Friday, July 20, 2012

Doc Savage - Part 3 The Cape-free Crusader

From April 2010: Continuing my look at the history of Doc Savage, today let's look at the many comic book lives of the character.
In this Gold Key issue from the 60s, Doc wraps his hands around a spitting cobra! Get you minds out of the gutter!
Doc headed over to Marvel in the early 70s with an all-new series done in the mighty Marvel style.
Readers (such as I) were introduced to Doc's team of fearless friends in this campy take on the character.
Doc is depicted as a "heart-stopping sight" - and his costume consists of tight white slacks and a skimpy black leather vest.
The text page in Issue #1 goes into detail about Doc's loyal teammates: Monk, Ham, Long Tom, Renny and Johnny!
Issue #2 featured the fearsome foe called The Feather Serpent!
Some dude called Silver Death was the villain in Issue #3.
Doc went topless and took on the Hell Diver in #4.
And then he faced the Night of the Monsters in Issue #6.
A giant sized adaptation of Warner Bros.' feature film  DOC SAVAGE: MAN OF BRONZE  followed. (More on the movie tomorrow!)
And oddest of all, Doc teamed up with The Fantastic Four's very own Thing in MARVEL TWO-IN-ONE.
A magazine-sized movie tie-in featured this iconographic image of Doc in all his manliness.
Doc donned rocket-powered skis for this magazine-sized adventure, but his tenure at Marvel was nearing it's end.

Years later, Doc & company showed up at DC, starring in an acclaimed four-part miniseries (recently collected into a trade paperback. Oddly enough, DC will be soon reprinting the Marvel stories in another trade collection).
A monthly series followed and ran for a while, but soon Doc was in comic book limbo once more.
Next he resurfaced in a short-lived series from an indie publisher called Millennium.
The homoerotic covers continued to follow Doc during this brief run.
So, that brings us right back to DC, where the new DOC SAVAGE comic debuted in April 2010. Doc also recently teamed up with Batman in a one-shot special and was featured in a miniseries called FIRST WAVE, which I covered in my tribute to Rima, the Jungle Girl. Come back tomorrow for my final Doc post.


Ookie said...

I'm pretty sure that Marvel's Giant-Size Doc Savage issue is reprints of their first two issues of the regular comic series. It's not an adaptation of the Pal movie, but like the movie, it is a loose adaptation of Doc's origin from the novels. Doc also co-starred in Giant-Size Spider-Man #3 in 1975. In the mid-1970s, Marvel was pushing Giant-Size books and seemed to mandate that they had to have a major co-star. Spidey's Giant-Size issues had him meet characters from novels like Dracula, (Shang-Chi the Son of) Fu Manchu and Doc Savage. Actually he didn't get to interact with them much because of copyright issues.

Ookie said...

Marvel Two-In-One #21 had a neat gimmick of vertically dividing the pages. On the left side was the story of Doc in the 1930s and on the right was the Thing in the 1970s. (Eventually they merge.) That issue (1976) introduced the character Thomas Lightner, who played a major role as the Nth Man in the classic 1979 Marvel Two-in-One "Project Pegasus" storyline.

Doug said...

Thanks for all that added info Ookie, 70s Marvel stuff was so awesome. Actually 70s comics in general were so much fun.


Marvel Two-In-One #21 had a neat gimmick of vertically dividing the pages.Other than this,the story was more utter crap by both Bill Mantlo and Marvel