Spider-Woman: Origin (2006)

Origin does away with the spider-blood serum and genetic accelerator elements of the character’s previous origin story. Instead, Jessica’s powers derive from her mother’s womb being hit by a laser beam containing the DNA traits of several different species of spiders while she was carrying Jessica (the Drews were trying to splice and harness spiders’ environmental adaptive capabilities, in order to graft them into the human genome).

After Jessica’s parents disappear under mysterious circumstances, Jessica is recruited into HYDRA (under false pretenses), where she is made into a formidable fighter and assassin. She is trained and mentored by Taskmaster, who schools her in many martial disciplines and more than seven different fighting styles out of his own “arsenal”.

In this re-telling, Otto Vermis, originally recruiting her into HYDRA, is rather an old, retired HYDRA agent who Jessica seduces in order to gain information that will lead her to her mother.

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Deadpool V2 (2008)

In 2008, a new Deadpool ongoing series written by Daniel Way with artist Paco Medina began as a Secret Invasion tie-in. In the first arc, the character is seen working with Nick Fury to steal data on how to kill the Skrull queen VerankeNorman Osborn steals the information that Deadpool had stolen from the Skrulls, and subsequent stories deal with the fallout from that. Writer Daniel Way explained, “the first thing Osborn does to try and take care of the situation is to bring in a hired gun to take Deadpool down, which would be Tiger-Shark. That would be the standard thing to do, but of course everything about Deadpool is non-standard. So it goes completely awry and Norman has to get more serious about things.” The story also sees the return of Bob, Agent of HYDRA; “I don’t want the book to become ‘Deadpool and Friends’ so characters will drift in and out, but Bob was someone I definitely wanted to bring in. It just had to be at the perfect moment and when I was putting this storyline together that moment presented itself.”

Deadpool V2 #5 NM $8

X-Men (Silver Age)

Early X-Men issues introduced the original team composed of Cyclops, Marvel Girl, BeastAngel and Iceman among a few others, their archenemy Magneto and his Brotherhood of Evil Mutants featuring Mastermind, Quicksilver, Scarlet Witch, and Toad. The comic focused on a common human theme of good versus evil and later included storylines and themes about prejudice and racism, all of which have persisted throughout the series in one form or another. The evil side in the fight was shown in human form and under some sympathetic beginnings via Magneto, a character who was later revealed to have survived Nazi concentration camps only to pursue a hatred for normal humanity. His key followers, Quicksilver and the Scarlet Witch, were Romani. Only one new member of the X-Men was added, Mimic/Calvin Rankin, but soon left due to his temporary loss of power.

The title lagged in sales behind Marvel’s other comic franchises. In 1969, writer Roy Thomas and illustrator Neal Adams rejuvenated the comic book and gave regular roles to two recently introduced characters: Havok/Alex Summers (who had been introduced by Roy Thomas before Adams began work on the comic) and Lorna Dane, later called Polaris (created by Arnold Drake and Jim Steranko). However, these later X-Men issues failed to attract sales and Marvel stopped producing new stories with issue #66, later reprinting a number of the older comics as issues #67–93.

 

Daredevil (1980’s)

During the 80’s Frank Miller was hired to continue the title and did so in a similar vein to previous writer  Roger McKenzie. Resuming the drastic metamorphosis the previous writer had begun, Miller took the step of essentially ignoring all of Daredevil’s continuity prior to his run on the series; on the occasions where older villains and supporting cast were used, their characterizations and history with Daredevil were reworked or overwritten. Most prominently, dedicated and loving father Jack Murdock was reimagined as a drunkard who physically abused his son Matt, entirely revising Daredevil’s reasons for becoming a lawyer. Spider-Man villain Kingpin was introduced as Daredevil’s new nemesis, displacing most of his large rogues gallery. Daredevil himself was gradually developed into an antihero. In issue #181 (April 1982), he attempts to murder one of his arch-enemies by throwing him off a tall building; when the villain survives as a quadriplegic, he breaks into his hospital room and tries to scare him to death by playing a two-man variation on Russian roulette with a secretly unloaded gun. Comics historian Les Daniels noted that “Almost immediately, [Miller] began to attract attention with his terse tales of urban crime.” Miller’s revamping of the title was controversial among fans, but it clicked with new readers, and sales began soaring, the comic returning to monthly status just three issues after Miller came on as writer.

Chamber of Chills (1972)

The title was one of four launched by Marvel Comics editor-in-chief Roy Thomas to form a line of science fiction and horror anthologies with more thematic cohesiveness than the company’s earlier attempts that decade, which had included such series as Chamber of Darkness and Tower of Shadows. Whereas those titles generally presented original stories, these new books would instead adapt genre classics and other works.

With the four titles’ debuts set to be staggered over the course of four months, Marvel premiered Journey into Mystery vol. 2 (Oct. 1972),Chamber of Chills (Nov. 1972), Supernatural Thrillers (Dec. 1972), and, with a late start, Worlds Unknown (May 1973). The first issue features an original six-page story by science fiction novelist George Alec Effinger, “Moon of Madness, Moon of Fear”, penciled by P. Craig Russell (then credited as Craig Russell), and a slightly retitled adaptation of the Harlan Ellison short story “Delusions for a Dragon Slayer”, by writer Gerry Conway and artist Syd Shores; in-between was a story by writer Stan Lee and artist Russ Heath, “They Wait in Their … Dungeon”, reprinted from Menace #1 (March 1953), from Marvel’s 1950s forerunner, Atlas Comics.

The bimonthly series ran exclusively new material through issue #4, with one reprinted story added to the mix for the following two issues, and only one new story in issue #7, after which the series became all-reprint. Most of the reprinted stories were 1950s “pre-Code” horror stories, which the industry self-censorship organization the Comics Code Authority had forbidden on Code-approved comics until a loosening of the Code in 1971.

Black Panther: Panther’s Prey (1990)

The Black Panther, Avenger and King of Wakanda, is taking a bride. On the way to the church he must stalk a very deadly prey to stop a drug pipeline that threatens his nation. Solomon Prey is without mercy, and he’s importing drugs into the paradise of Wakanda. Prey threatens to destroy the lives of the people with drugs, to throw T’Challa from the throne, and to kill him in mortal combat. Written by Don McGregor, with art and cover by Dwayne Turner.

 

Miracleman by Gaiman & Buckingham Vol 1 – Book 4: The Golden Age (2016)

At New York Comic Con 2013, Marvel announced that they had solidified their rights to Miracleman and that Neil Gaiman would finish the story he had started 25 years earlier. The series is being reprinted in a giant-sized format, with each issue containing a reprint of the corresponding issue of the Eclipse Comics series, reprints of select Mick Anglo Marvelman stories, and non-fiction material such as essays, photos, and Marvelman design sketches. The first issue, reprinting the recolored and relettered stories from Warrior #1 & 2/Miracleman #1, was released on January 15, 2014.

The reprints continued, collecting remastered and recolored work of the original run, with hardcover collections following, and in September 2014 the first new Miracleman material under the Marvel Comics banner was announced. Featuring a ‘lost’ story by Grant Morrison that he wrote in the 1980s, and drawn by Joe Quesada, it will be joined by a brand new story by Peter Milligan and Mike Allred.

The reprints proceed through #16 when the series was retitled Miracleman: The Golden Age which reprinted issues 17-22. Miracleman by Gaiman & Buckingham: The Silver Age issues 1 to 3 were announced for release in 2017.

 

Vengeance of the Moon Knight (2009)

Moon Knight returns to New York after faking his death with Jake Lockley as his dominant personality, but still struggles against his violent nature and is hounded by Khonshu in the form of a small imaginary tormentor resembling a man in the Moon Knight costume with a bird skull who goads him to kill. While trying to walk the path of a hero he makes a bold return taking on many criminals but killing none of them; now the people of New York begin to see him as a hero and not a murderous vigilante much to Norman Osborn’s disdain. Jake’s personality has been one of struggle against the inner demon trying to get him to kill while juggling sobriety.

Vengeance of the Moon Knight 1 Variant NM 19
Vengeance of the Moon Knight 1 Variant NM 19

The Incredible Hulk V1 (Silver Age)

The Hulk first appeared in The Incredible Hulk #1 (cover dated May 1962), written by writer-editor Stan Lee, penciled and co-plotted by Jack Kirby, and inked by Paul Reinman. Lee cites influence from Frankenstein and Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde in the Hulk’s creation. The Hulk’s original series was canceled with issue #6 (March 1963).

In the debut, Lee chose gray for the Hulk because he wanted a color that did not suggest any particular ethnic group. Colorist Stan Goldberg, however, had problems with the gray coloring, resulting in different shades of grey, and even green, in the issue. After seeing the first published issue, Lee chose to change the skin color to green. Green was used in retellings of the origin, with even reprints of the original story being recolored for the next two decades, until The Incredible Hulk vol. 2, #302 (December 1984) reintroduced the gray Hulk in flashbacks set close to the origin story. Since then, reprints of the first issue have displayed the original gray coloring, with the fictional canon specifying that the Hulk’s skin had initially been grey. An exception is the early trade paperback, Origins of Marvel Comics, from 1974, which explains the difficulties in keeping the gray color consistent in a Stan Lee written prologue, and reprints the origin story keeping the gray coloration.

Lee gave the Hulk’s alter ego the alliterative name Bruce Banner because he found he had less difficulty remembering alliterative names. Despite this, in later stories he misremembered the character’s name and referred to him as “Bob Banner”, an error which readers quickly picked up on. The discrepancy was resolved by giving the character the official full name of Robert Bruce Banner.

 

The Son of Satan (1975)

The character Daimon Hellstrom first appeared in Ghost Rider #1 (Sept. 1973), then was spun off into a feature, “Son of Satan”, in Marvel Spotlight #12–24 (Oct. 1973 – Oct. 1975). During the “Son of Satan” run, Marvel Spotlight was a controversial series, with numerous readers writing to object to the depictions of Satanism and wiccanism as being either inaccurate or furthering the cause of evil. Nonetheless, sales were strong, prompting Marvel to launch the character into his own series, Son of Satan, written by John Warner. The character’s success faded soon after the series launch, and Son of Satan was cancelled with issue #7, though an unused fill-in was published as Son of Satan #8 (Feb. 1977).

Son of Satan #1 VF $15