Sunday, July 27, 2008
Thirty-four years or so ago, when Mike was 11, I was 10, John was 8, and Yen a mere lad of 5 (our sister yet to be born in three months time), we got a copy of Man-Thing #1. Pop bought it for us at Pic-n-Pac, for twenty cents. Times being what they were, such gifts were often community property in nature, even if nominally bought for one boy. It was read, and read hard, by a succession of kids with varied habits of care and a variety of places: while eating snacks, in bed, on the pot, up a tree, in the dog pens or the chicken coop, in short, wherever we thought we could get some privacy to concentrate on half an acre. The upshot was, that by the time I entered high school (1978) the comic was gone. Whether its surviving scraps were thrown away in one of Mom and Pop's systematic purges, or whether we threw it away ourselves piece by piece till nothing was left, I do not know. It was gone.
Gone, but not forgotten. We had read that comic with all the concentration of bored youth, and the storyline and many individual panels stuck with us for years. We picked up the thread of the Man-Thing's adventures with Korrek, Jennifer Kale, and Dakimh in Giant Size Man-Thing #3 (1975), and that comic still survived, and every now and then we ran across one of Howard the Duck's stories, and these helped us remember the old comic. For years, everytime I went into a store that sold comics I looked for Man-Thing #1, with no success.
Enter the Internet. I finally become adept enough to order something off e-Bay; a couple of weeks ago I find a copy for sale for $33. I look at the price. I waffle. I consult with John. "It's only gonna get more expensive," he says. I bite the bullet and order. This Saturday it arrived.
Above are a few of the well-remembered panels that I scanned today. My next posting should be more panels and a synopsis of the story.