Wednesday, October 28, 2015
Fantastic old stories
I've been having a lot of fun with E-Bay lately, using it to reassemble different runs of comic books that I used to own in my younger days. Pictured here are Fantastic Four numbers 196 through 200, originally published in the spring and summer of 1978 (click on the photo for a better look). This five-issue storyline features one of the better Dr. Doom stories from that period, concluding with the double-sized issue number 200.
I was thinking of this story because of my disappointment with the recent Fantastic Four movie, which I thought was needlessly mediocre. After seeing the movie, I had said to myself, "Why can't they just take inspiration from any number of great old FF epics from the last thirty years of comics storylines? Kind of like the way the Marvel movies that Marvel actually controls (the Iron Man, Captain America, and Avengers movies, for example) do all the time? And that's what got me thinking of this particular FF story, as Dr. Doom implements a particularly ambitious plan to both destroy his hated enemies and simultaneously assume control of the planet.
These issues originally cost 35 cents each back in the late 70's, except for the double-sized issue 200, which cost 60 cents. That amounts to my paying two bucks for the whole epic back in the day. Re-buying them in decent condition over the past month or so via different sellers on E-bay set me back about 25 bucks. A lot of that was postage, though. Still, it was nice to see that each comic book nicely appreciated in value (each one costing about three bucks minus postage), but happily not enough to make them prohibitive to buy now.
Anyway, the 25 bucks or so was actually not a lot of money to reassemble a bit of my youth, and I'm looking forward to buying a few more comics from the storylines I enjoyed as a teen. And, yes, these five FF comics held up when I finally sat down to read them. Many, many years after originally devouring them, I once again enjoyed a solid, entertaining story by writer Marv Wolfman and artists Keith Pollard and Joe Sinnott.
Hmmm, is it maybe time to look on E-Bay for some pages of original art from those comics, too? They would look nice in some decent frames, hanging in a hallway or two. I mean, who needs to eat, right?