Episode 1661 Talkback - Top Five Childhood Favorite Comics

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  • ChrisMurrinChrisMurrin Posts: 130
    Here are mine, as best as I can remember.

    #5 Batman: A Death in the Family TPB - This is the book that took me from occasional reader to fully dipped comic collector. The story showed younger me how serious and impactful comics could be.

    #4 Star Wars #1 - I was way into Star Wars from the get-go from the commericals and toys but was a little scared by Chewbacca at first, so I was afraid to see the movie. Reading the comic made me determined to see the movie, even though Chewbacca doesn't appear in the issue.

    #3 Power Records, Spider-Man: The Mark of the Man-Wolf - I think I got this on a family trip and devoured it hundreds of times.

    #2 Iron Man #163 - One of the first back issues I ever bought and the start of my collection of Iron Man single issues, which now extends from Tales of Suspense #84 to the present. Nothing special about it other than my nostalgia, though I thought the Chessmen was a fun idea at the time.

    #1 X-Men #207 - Bought in one of those plastic three packs as a present from my father, this book introduced me to Wolverine and started the casual comic buying that would develop into the hobby. The cover alone blew my mind. I once had a T-shirt airbrushed on the boardwalk in Ocean City of the cover, and I have a Chris Giarusso recreation in my art collection. If it weren't for this book, I would probably be hanging out on a Phillies forum right now.
  • BionicDaveBionicDave Posts: 265

    the origin and introduction of the greatest superhero of any time, Jack "Mr. Magnificent" Magniconte. Magniconte!

    I knew this would be an awesome list when you kicked it off with Kickers Inc.! :joy: Bravo on your choices
  • matchkitJOHNmatchkitJOHN Posts: 973
    edited August 10
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    Seeing this was hard.

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    And since it's the month of King Kirby's 100th. I really enjoyed the images of this run.

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  • ChrisBeckettChrisBeckett Posts: 379
    @johnnyhateschachi
    That run of G.I. Joe issues through the 20s, with "Silent Interlude", the capture and escape of Cobra Commander, and the origin of Snake-Eyes, is just a stellar run of comics, and Hama & co. kept that up for many, many issues to follow.

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    And those covers. Damn...
  • BionicDaveBionicDave Posts: 265

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    Comic books and soap operas use melodrama so damn well. This is such an emotional moment :.[
  • peteloafpeteloaf Posts: 2
    edited August 11
    This is likely the Spider-Man comic Murd was referring to as his number . Cover dated December 1986 image
  • I don't post here very often, but I do listen to nearly every podcast and I felt compelled to respond to this episode with my own top 5 picks. I'm a sucker for nostalgia.

    5. Peter Parker the Spectacular Spider-Man #100
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    This was the first comic I ever owned, along with another one on this list. My family was on Christmas break, taking a road trip to see the grandparents, and when we stopped at a gas station, my Mom popped inside to get everyone snacks. To my surprise, she came back with two comic books for me, which I still own to this day. I read and reread these two issues and, although I often read the paltry selection of Superman comics my Grandma kept for us, this was when I developed my love for comics. Thanks, Mom! This was also my first exposure to the Kingpin. I already knew Spider-Man from the cartoons.

    4. Batman and the Outsiders #19
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    I got this one along with the Spider-Man comic above. This series ended up being one of my favorites and this is the Batman I know and love and still have yet to see fulfilled in any movie or TV show. Maybe someday.

    3. What if... the Hulk Went Berzerk? #45
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    I love this comic because it takes a dark look at alternate outcomes and I always found that fascinating. Plus, !spoilers! Hulk kills 3/4s of the FF and Iron Man and that kind of blew my little kid mind. I had a period in my childhood when I was very sick and I remember lying in bed reading a Hulk trade (although they were more like traditional paperbacks than the trades we have now) which helped take my mind off how awful I felt. Curiously, the liquid medicine I had to take was Hulk green, so I thought that was a funny coincidence. Point being, I had a love of Hulk and seeing him going apeshit was pretty awesome.

    2. Daredevil #220
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    Although Born Again would shortly follow, this was my first Daredevil comic and it actually had one of the biggest impacts on me of any comic. Here was a dark tale of a hero who had some real complexity to him in a literally foggy backdrop. Not only was the writing tight, but the artwork by Mazzuchelli was like nothing I'd seen before. Daredevil was so graceful and balletic and the reaction panels were haunting. And the story? Heather calls Matt in distress. He begrudgingly shows up, disses her hard and abandons her. Next morning, he finds that she hanged herself. Or did she? Even though Matt wasn't entirely responsible for her death, the question hangs throughout the issue and it lends such a weight to this character that other comics that followed had a hard time measuring up.

    1. Batman - Robin Meets Man-Bat Power Record
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    "This can't be happening! But it is! I've become... a Man-Bat!"

    You can listen to it here:
    http://powerrecord.blogspot.com/2007/12/batman-robin-meets-man-bat.html

    I listened to this so many times as a kid. I absolutely loved this story and this format. Listening to it right now really takes me back. I haven't heard this in over 30 years. The combination of a paper comic and soundtrack with voice acting and sound effects and music was pure comic book gold.
  • bralinatorbralinator Posts: 5,834

    I don't post here very often, but I do listen to nearly every podcast and I felt compelled to respond to this episode with my own top 5 picks. I'm a sucker for nostalgia.

    Great picks and great post, @infinitetofu! Thanks for sharing.
  • BionicDaveBionicDave Posts: 265

    Great picks and great post, @infinitetofu! Thanks for sharing.

    Agreed! Love looking at these covers, and also hearing why these issues mean so much to you.
  • TheOriginalGManTheOriginalGMan Posts: 1,624


    This was the first comic I ever owned, along with another one on this list. My family was on Christmas break, taking a road trip to see the grandparents, and when we stopped at a gas station, my Mom popped inside to get everyone snacks. To my surprise, she came back with two comic books for me, which I still own to this day. I read and reread these two issues and, although I often read the paltry selection of Superman comics my Grandma kept for us, this was when I developed my love for comics. Thanks, Mom! This was also my first exposure to the Kingpin. I already knew Spider-Man from the cartoons.

    Man, that's a great story. Good stuff, right there.
  • alienalalienal Posts: 458
    edited August 27
    I haven't actually listened to this episode yet (it's in the queue following the August Previews episode), but I see it's getting a lot of response in the forums. Wow, looking over most of the posted Top Fives, either there are a LOT of "young" guys who contribute to this forum OR I'm one of the few "older guys." Anyway, since the title of the episode was "CHILDHOOD" favorites, I restricted my picks to BEFORE I was a teenager. Since I started reading comics when I was 10 (my dad bought me an issue of Batman because I liked the 1966 Batman TV show so much), that gives me a roughly two-year window (actually September 1966 to January 1968 my birth year/month). My other restriction is that for the comic to be one of my favorites it must be that I read it until the covers fell off! So, now that I've thought of my FIVE, I'm just listing them chronologically.......

    ONE) Superman 195: cover date April 1967- The Fury of the Kryptonite Killer - I just loved seeing Superman, Supergirl, and Krypto getting beat until they finally use their brains (not necessarily their powers) to beat the villain.

    TWO) The Avengers 41: cover date June 1967 - Let Sleeping Dragons Lie featuring Dragon Man - My first exposure to the Avengers basically Cap's Kooky Quartet with Wasp and Goliath added. Dragon Man and Diablo are the villains. Great John Buscema art!

    THREE) Fantastic Four 64: cover date July 1967 - The Sentry Sinister - Basically the first inkling we get that the Kree have been to Earth and it's funny that Crystal and Lockjaw are involved. Plus, KIRBY!

    FOUR) Superman 199: cover date August 1967 - Superman's Race with the Flash - I read this over and over thinking "How in the world can Superman beat the Flash? That's just ridiculous!" I loved the appearance of some gangsters who tried to fix the race. LOL!

    FIVE) Justice League of America 60 cover date Feb 1968 - Winged Warriors of the Immortal Queen. Now for me there was actually a tie between this and JLA issue 55 which featured the adult Robin from Earth 2. The fact that issue 60 featured as the villain the Queen Bee beautifully drawn by Mike Sekowsky lead me to chose this as my #5. Yeah, I was 12 but I think my hormones were starting to wake up so I loved that issue...
  • gingpogingpo Posts: 19
    I'm a little late to the game here but this episode really got me thinking about some childhood comics. Most of these I still have to this day.
    #5 SECRET ORIGINS SUPER-VILLAINS
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    This one took some research, because when my uncle gave me a bunch of his old comics it was already missing the front cover and some of the interior pages. It was pretty memorable though considering this book was printed in a larger format. I've always been a fan of learning the origins of characters, and getting insights on how the Joker and Lex Luthor came to be seemed pretty amazing to me. Unfortunately I was given this before I had a real understanding of comics or how to treat them, so even though it is still in my collection it was put through the ringer. It was folded in half and at some point I felt the need to draw pupils in Batman's eyes during the Joker/Red Hood story...

    #4 JLA 217

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    I'm pretty sure what I actually had in my possession was a reprint of this issue. First of all, George Pérez did penciling duty on the cover... which is glorious! Granted it didn't have much to do with the interior story, but it was still amazing. The story itself was cool because was about beings who were elementals that took over human hosts, and it took all of the JLA to take them down. This was also my introduction to Zatanna and Firestorm, which still remain some of my favorite characters to this day.

    #3 POWERMAN AND IRONFIST 81
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    SWEET CHRISTMAS! I was lurking in some short boxes at a local flea market and a stark red cover caught my eye. 22 pages later I was a huge fan of these odd couple characters who work so well together.

    #2 CLASSIC X-MEN 37
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    The cover grabbed me instantly... keep in mind this was long before I knew anything about the history of the X-men, Jean Grey, John Byrne... etc. So yes, Steve Lightle did the heavy lifting and got me to pick up an X-men reprint off the spinner rack at Walden Books just on his artwork alone. Then I cracked the cover and fell in love with the X-men, Chris Claremont's writing, and John Byrne's art. I was done.

    #1 UNCANNY X-MEN 209
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    This was the first comic I purchased on my own. It was in a back issue box in a collectibles store (I since forget the name of the store) outside of Reading, PA, in a collection of little stores called the Toll House Shoppes. While I would later discover Pagoda Comics in the same location and Golden Eagle Comics a few miles away, this was my first foray into the exciting and often overwhelming world of comics. I remember my mother set me loose in this store that looked like someone's attic filled with treasures, and with my hard earned chore money I purchased Uncanny X-Men 209. John Romita, Jr.'s dynamic artwork, and the snappy dialogue of Chris Claremont drew me into this tale where the heroes of the book seemed to be failing more often than winning. Who was the mysterious Rachel/Phoenix, and why did Wolverine feel like he needed to hurt her so badly? What was Nimrod and why would anyone make a character so difficult to beat? It really turned my understanding of what comic books were on its head and planted the seed to want even more.

    Alternates
    BATMAN 441
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    I really fell down the rabbit hole of comics thanks to three key factors. My uncle giving me his destroyed collection of Bronze Age DC books, winning a writing contest and getting a $25 gift card to Walden Books, and of course, the 1989 Batman movie. Even though I was mostly all about reading books at that time, I was also hungry for all things Batman, and one of the samplings on the spinner rack was Batman 441. Not only was it Batman, but it examined the origin of Dick Grayson, and also had a beautiful cover by Pérez.

    UNCANNY X-MEN 251

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    The cover to X-Men 251 was forever burned into my memory as a kid. This just wasn't what I expected to see in a comic. Opening it up to see someone as seemingly indestructible as Wolverine brought low and left to die, only to be rescued by a teenage girl who managed to escape capture not by using her mutant power but by wits alone... it was impressive.
  • bralinatorbralinator Posts: 5,834
    Awesome picks @gingpo!
  • BionicDaveBionicDave Posts: 265

    Awesome picks @gingpo!

    I concur! Terrific picks, and those covers... my God <3
    Also, I'd've loved to have been a fly on the wall at DC when they put together the cover for that SECRET ORIGINS SUPER-VILLAINS and had to decide who got "The" placed before their name and who didn't. I mean come on - The Flash, even The Cheetah, but not The Batman? grrrr
  • gingpogingpo Posts: 19



    Also, I'd've loved to have been a fly on the wall at DC when they put together the cover for that SECRET ORIGINS SUPER-VILLAINS and had to decide who got "The" placed before their name and who didn't. I mean come on - The Flash, even The Cheetah, but not The Batman? grrrr

    Yeah I'm curious to learn more about this format. I think they were primarily reprints of older stories, with very little new material, so maybe they weren't focused on as much as some other projects at the time.
  • TheOriginalGManTheOriginalGMan Posts: 1,624
    gingpo said:

    Yeah I'm curious to learn more about this format. I think they were primarily reprints of older stories, with very little new material, so maybe they weren't focused on as much as some other projects at the time.

    I've got that in my collection. This is a "treasury sized" one shot and reprints the origin tales of those villains. No new material. They did a sequel the following year, which I also have:

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  • nweathingtonnweathington Posts: 5,167
    gingpo said:





    Also, I'd've loved to have been a fly on the wall at DC when they put together the cover for that SECRET ORIGINS SUPER-VILLAINS and had to decide who got "The" placed before their name and who didn't. I mean come on - The Flash, even The Cheetah, but not The Batman? grrrr

    Yeah I'm curious to learn more about this format. I think they were primarily reprints of older stories, with very little new material, so maybe they weren't focused on as much as some other projects at the time.
    Sol Harrison, DC’s production manager, came up with the idea for the format in 1972. It was an effort to have a product that could sit in bookstores and airport newsstands for longer periods of time (not a periodical, bigger price tag—$1 instead of 20¢, more noticeable, etc.). The newsstand distribution of comics was just beginning its death spiral.

    DC eventually had two different lines: Limited Collectors’ Editions and Famous First Editions. The FFEs reprinted the Golden Age first issues of their most popular characters, while the LCEs were a mix of original stories and themed reprints. The first was Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer in late 1972, which was entirely reprints from DC’s 1950s Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer comic series, and from 1973 to 1981, DC produced a slew of the books.

    Marvel, always one to follow a trend, got into the act in 1974 and continued until 1982. They didn’t produce as many as DC, nor did they run as much original material in their treasuries as did DC. The Star Wars treasuries (four, all told) were among their biggest successes in the format.

    And of course, the first DC-Marvel crossovers happened in the treasury books, starting with the Marvelous Wizard of Oz in 1975.

    So, yeah, they were quite focused on the treasury books, DC probably more so than Marvel. I mean, DC actually held a press conference with Muhammed Ali in attendance to announce the Superman Vs. Ali book.
  • gingpogingpo Posts: 19



    So, yeah, they were quite focused on the treasury books, DC probably more so than Marvel.

    Thank you so much for the information about the Treasury Editions! I found a great cover gallery and info on each issue HERE. I can guess what happened to the cover now... looks like they had a cool diorama you could make by cutting out parts of it.

  • nweathingtonnweathington Posts: 5,167
    edited August 31
    gingpo said:



    So, yeah, they were quite focused on the treasury books, DC probably more so than Marvel.

    Thank you so much for the information about the Treasury Editions! I found a great cover gallery and info on each issue HERE. I can guess what happened to the cover now... looks like they had a cool diorama you could make by cutting out parts of it.

    No problem. I had a bunch of them when I was a kid, and I loved those things. Most of the LCE line had activity pages spread throughout the books—crossword puzzles, etc. The Super Friends book was one of my favorites because the back pages had Alex Toth showing how cartoons were produced.

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  • Fantastic episode that really brought back some memories of comics past. My list is heavy on late-70s Marvel because I did not really get into DC comics until much later (despite my love for the Batman TV series).

    What If? 22: Loved this story, which was my introduction to Dr. Doom's backstory, which was tweaked in it.

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    Fantastic Four 211: I thought Terrax was cool, despite his villainy, and John Byrne drew him best.

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    Avengers 195: Fabulous George Perez art, and the introduction of the Taskmaster on the final page

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    Avengers 160: More fantastic Perez art and my introduction to Ultron!

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    Uncanny X-Men 133: Great cover and interior art by John Byrne, and the issue that I think catapulted Wolverine to stardom! And part of the Dark Phoenix Saga, still my favorite story of all time.

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