The Silver Surfer debuted as an unplanned addition to Fantastic Four #48 (March 1966). The comic’s writer-editor, Stan Lee, and its penciller and co-plotter, Jack Kirby, had by the mid-1960s developed a collaborative technique known as the “Marvel Method“: the two would discuss story ideas, Kirby would work from a brief synopsis to draw the individual scenes and plot details, and Lee would finally add the dialog and captions. When Kirby turned in his pencil art for the story, he included a new character he and Lee had not discussed. As Lee recalled in 1995, “There, in the middle of the story we had so carefully worked out, was a nut on some sort of flying surfboard”. He later expanded on this, recalling, “I thought, ‘Jack, this time you’ve gone too far'”. Kirby explained that the story’s agreed-upon antagonist, a god-like cosmic predator of planets named Galactus, should have some sort of herald, and that he created the surfboard “because I’m tired of drawing spaceships!” Taken by the noble features of the new character, who turned on his master to help defend Earth, Lee overcame his initial skepticism and began adding characterization. The Silver Surfer soon became a key part of the unfolding story.
New X-Men: Academy X was launched during the X-Men ReLoad event. The Academy X subtitle was dropped from the title when the new creative team of Craig Kyle and Christopher Yost took over the series with issue #20.
Whereas the other X-Men comics mostly deal with established adult mutants, this series concentrates on the lives of young students residing at the Xavier Institute for Higher Learning as they learn to control their powers.
After the 2007 crossover X-Men: Messiah Complex, the New X-Men title was canceled and briefly relaunched as Young X-Men for 12 issues. The series was written by Marc Guggenheim. After the first arc of Young X-Men, the characters began appearing in the pages of Uncanny X-Men. With the cancellation of Young X-Men the characters were folded onto the main X-Men books, appearing most prominently in the pages of X-Men: Legacy, Wolverine and the X-Men, and most recently, in X-Men.
The Gunslinger Born is an expansion and interpretation of events covered in The Dark Tower series, beginning with Roland Deschain‘s manhood test against Cort and ending with the last events of the flashback sequences in Wizard and Glass. Later arcs will “cover the time period between Roland leaving Hambry and the fall of Gilead“. The Gunslinger Born is followed by The Long Road Home, whose first issue was released on March 5, 2008.
In 2009, Thomas explained he had been a fan of the soundtrack to the musical Jesus Christ Superstar and sought to bring the story to comic books in a superhero context: “Yes, I had some trepidation about the Christ parallels, but I hoped there would be little outcry if I handled it tastefully, since I was not really making any serious statement on religion… at least not overtly.” Choosing to use a preexisting character while keeping the series locale separate from mainstream Marvel Earth, he created Counter-Earth, a new planet generated from a chunk of Earth and set in orbit on the opposite side of the sun. Thomas and Kane collaborated on the costume, with the red tunic and golden lightning bolt as their homage to Fawcett Comics‘ 1940s-1950s character Captain Marvel. The story continued in the series The Power of Warlock, which ran eight issues (Aug. 1972 – Oct. 1973)
Writer-artist Jim Starlin revived Warlock in Strange Tales #178-181 (Feb.-Aug. 1975). Warlock’s adventures became more cosmic in scope as Starlin took the character through an extended storyline referred to as “The Magus Saga.”
The reimagined title continued the numbering of The Power of Warlock and began with Warlock #9 (Oct. 1975) and ran seven issues. The bimonthly series was initially written and drawn by Starlin, but was eventually co-penciled and inked by Steve Leialoha.
Due to strong sales on the character’s first appearance in Amazing Fantasy #15, Spider-Man was given his own ongoing series in March 1963. The initial years of the series, under Lee and Ditko, chronicled Spider-Man’s nascent career with his civilian life as hard-luck yet perpetually good-humored teenager Peter Parker. Peter balanced his career as Spider-Man with his job as a freelance photographer for The Daily Bugle under the bombastic editor-publisher J. Jonah Jameson to support himself and his frail Aunt May. At the same time, Peter dealt with public hostility towards Spider-Man and the antagonism of his classmates Flash Thompson and Liz Allan at Midtown High School, while embarking on a tentative, ill-fated romance with Jameson’s secretary, Betty Brant.
By focusing on Parker’s everyday problems, Lee and Ditko created a groundbreakingly flawed, self-doubting superhero, and the first major teenaged superhero to be a protagonist and not a sidekick. Ditko’s quirky art provided a stark contrast to the more cleanly dynamic stylings of Marvel’s most prominent artist, Jack Kirby, and combined with the humor and pathos of Lee’s writing to lay the foundation for what became an enduring mythos.
Carol Danvers, the first character to use the moniker Ms. Marvel, first appeared in Marvel Super-Heroes #13 (March 1968) by writer Roy Thomas and artist Gene Colan as a non-superpowered officer in United States Air Force. After being caught in an explosion with the Kree superhero Captain Marvel in Captain Marvel #18 (November 1969), Danvers resurfaces in Ms. Marvel #1 (January 1977) with super powers as result of the explosion which caused her DNA to merge with Captain Marvel’s. As Ms. Marvel, Danvers becomes a mainstay of the superhero team, The Avengers beginning in The Avengers #171 (May 1978). Danvers goes on to use the codenames Binary and Warbird. In July 2012, Danvers assumes the mantle Captain Marvel in honor of its dead, original holder, Mar-Vell, after Captain America tells her that Mar-Vell would want her to have it.
The series sees Norrin Rad severed from Galactus and free to explore the universe with a human friend named Dawn Greenwood. Slott said, “The way I look at the Surfer is that he’s the embodiment of freedom. The character has really been two things since he became the Silver Surfer. He’s been a slave to Galactus, and he’s been a prisoner of Earth, trapped beyond that great barrier. There’s something about him where, the minute you take that barrier away, and the minute you take him away from Galactus, he’s the guy with the board who can go anywhere and do anything. It really is that kind of joy and freedom like you’re 16 and you just got the keys to the car. But imagine not just driving near your home – you can go anywhere in the universe. There’s something very exciting about that.”