Fans my age tend to have a fondness for the hunt and discovery of of back issues in a time before every moderately-sized city had a comic shop. In the part of North Carolina that I grew up in, the big mother-load of back issues were usually flea markets. I would find some gems at the flea market, whether it was the one off the Interstate that coated the family car in dust, or the one just outside of town that had only a few booths. In that last one, the comic seller had a really good selection of back issue Marvel comics. I seem to recall one in particular he had was Avengers #157, which sported a Jack Kirby cover. Of course, at the time. I had no clue who Jack Kirby was. Nevertheless, the cover had all of the Avengers taken out by one foe, and all I could see of him was his boots.
When I decided on this comic for review, I realized shortly thereafter that is was from the same year, and only a month away from the previous Reviews of Old Comics article. So what makes 1984 so ripe for memorable comics to review? Yes, I know that technically, this and the previous comics were actually from late 1983, but in the zeitgeist, if the cover is dated 1984, we tend to view it as being from 1984. This was the year that brought us the first Secret Wars and DC's Super Powers, which were some of the first big crossover comics with toy lines. Alan Moore's first issues of Saga of the Swamp Thing are from this year, a definite turning point in comic books for more mature readers. This year also saw the debut of Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, which vitalized an independent comics market with hope that a small book could become vastly popular with fans. It also saw DC Comics launch its prestige format Baxter line, available only through comic shops, which probably marked the beginning of comic book shops becoming a destination for fans of comics, eventually supplanting the newsstand as the preferred outlet for new comic books. 1984 was a benchmark year, as it saw significant change in the comic book market and industry.
Went through the comics I remember reading as a kid and thought of this old issue of Justice League of America that impressed me. The image of super-heroes with wacky starfish attached to their faces has stuck with me to this day, making Starro one of my favorite JLA villains. It's probably this issue's striking cover that caught my eye as a kid, .
Wow. It's been a while, hasn't it? Let's skip the apologies and continue like nothing happened to keep me from reviewing old comics and sharing a love of the Legion of Super-Heroes. I even love the Legion when they shared their title with Superboy. I'm taking a break from reviewing every single issue put out in order and instead jumping to one that I remember getting at a discount store in a Whitman 3-Pack.
Look at the End of this Article For An Update. On his Tumblr, comic book writer Gerry Conway took DC Entertainment to task for their policy of claiming that characters were derivative, justifying not paying their creators for the character's use in other media. Unfortunately, they also claim that the creators of the original character aren't the creators either, thus no one gets creator credit and thus, pay no royalties to anyone. He also points out that DC Entertainment stopped proactively crediting creators after the departure of former DC President Paul Levitz, and now creators have to request royalties for all characters that they created in their time working for DC. It's despicable that DC uses faulty logic to stop creators from benefit in any way from their creations' use in mass media that nets DC, and their parent company Warner Bros. millions in revenue.