Thursday, October 30, 2008

By the 10's: Marvel Tales AND Astonishing!


It's a two for one deal here in By the 10's, because tomorrow's Halloween, and this is the last of the horror comic By the 10's I have room for this month!

That, and both these titles had pretty short runs. Let's start with Marvel Tales (the first series... this series took over from Marvel Mystery Comics when the superheroes went out of vogue for a bit, taking the title over with issue 93 (Marvel Mystery 92 was a Torch cover, if you're curious).

Issue 100

Issue 110 - Yes, that is a human skeleton with fleshed-out bat wings.

Issue 120 - Sensing a trend in these books yet?

Issue 130 - Now, this looks more like what I'd expect a post WWII Marvel comic to look like!

Issue 140 - Note, if you will, that the logo in use by issue 140 would be retained when the new series of Marvel Tales starts!

Issue 150 - Incredible, isn't it?

The title lasted nine more issues... Of course, in 1966, Marvel Tales was revived with a new issue #1 (as Marvel Tales Annual, going to regular numbering with issue 3, and retitled "Marvel Tales" again) as kind of Marvel's answer to DC's 80-Page Giants (along with Fantasy Masterpieces/Marvel's Greatest Comics and others, giving new readers a chance to catch up!) for a 291-issue run!

And now, for Astonishing! You'll see that, for the most part, logo aside, there's not much to differentiate it from Marvel Tales! At least, for the issues I'm presenting here. Astonishing took over the numbering from Marvel Boy with issue 3, and started out with Marvel Boy on the cover and featuring other sci-fi tales... but then it went weird!

Issue 10

Issue 20

Issue 30

Issue 40

Issue 50 - I wonder just how many comics covers there are with a character who's been shrunken by someone else (as opposed to The Atom, Doll-Man, Ant-Man, and others who use shrinking as their super-power)?

Issue 60

Stan Lee must've liked the word "Astonish," because even though this series only lasted three more issues after this, he'd bring out "Tales to Astonish" in 1959 (about two years after this title ended) and "Astonishing Tales" would come out in 1970!



  1. Something about the cover of Astonishing issue 30 doesn't look right... i gotta check up on that artist when i get time

  2. The Grand Comics Database credits Joe Maneely with pencils and inks for that cover.

  3. yeah.. i noticed the sig.. no clue who he is ^_^

  4. Maneely's best-known work is Marvel's "Black Knight" series of the 1950s. He passed away in a tragic accident at age 32 in 1958, and it's been said that if he hadn't died, he would've been a heavy hitter in the Marvel Age of Comics.


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