Sunday, December 08, 2013

Special Feature: Fawcett Did It First!

As I've noted before, I spent quite a bit of time last spring and summer reading through old Fawcett Comics, espcially the Marvel Family issues. And one thing that I started seeing was things presented in the stories that ended up being used again, years later -- and many of these, ironically, in Marvel Comics! Check this first example out:

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I forget which issue this came from, but here's a Captain Marvel story in which Mole Men who live under the earth use machinery to draw buildings from the surface world to their subterranean world... Sound familiar?

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That's what happened in this issue of Fantastic Four, in a plot by the Mole Man!

There's more examples after the jump!

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Here's a Captain Marvel story from The Marvel Family, in which Cap battles a bald guy called the Radioactive Man... just like...
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Here, from another Captain Marvel story, someone finds the hammer of Thor, and it's established that the hammer returns to the person who throws it.

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Lava Men!

Coincidence? Possibly, but one can't discount that Stan Lee, Jack Kirby, and others in the early days of Marvel Comics weren't aware of these stories!

Not that Marvel is the only "guilty" party to borrowing an idea from Captain Marvel comics... oh, no! Check this out:
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A werewolf around a school... sounds like something out of Harry Potter, doesn't it?

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DC seems to have borrowed, too... here's Captain Marvel Jr. battling what sure looks to me like an "inspiration" for the Royal Flush Gang!

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These fourth dimensional tongs made a re-appearance of sorts in a Silver Age Jimmy Olsen issue, where they were part of a future burglar's kit!

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And finally, was this story an inspiration for the creation of Gorilla Grodd?

3 comments:

  1. I never knew about that Marvel Family story with Thor's hammer! How did I miss it?

    Interesting to ponder -- and I know you know this, but worth repeating for anyone else perusing these comments -- that Joe Simon and Jack Kirby produced Captain Marvel Adventures #1, and many years later Kirby was reportedly the one who persuaded Carmine Infantino to have DC revive the character with C.C. Beck. I've always thought it was obvious how much Kirby admired the series concept when looking at all the homages he snuck into his own creations -- the Infinity Man, OMAC, the Demon, and Thor himself can be construed as tributes to the magically-transformed Billy Batson. Consciously or otherwise, I wouldn't be at all surprised if Kirby looked at the comics every so often and some of these concepts and/or names stayed in the back of his head to emerge later.

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  2. Jon,
    Re: "I forget which issue this came from, but here's a Captain Marvel story"

    comics.org lists this is Captain Marvel Adventures #32 (Feb 1944).
    HTH!

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  3. Re: "was this story an inspiration for the creation of Gorilla Grodd?"

    comics.org IDs this story, "The Apes Who Could Make Fire", in Captain Marvel Adventures #114 (Nov 1950). Gorilla Grodd followed in April-May 1959.
    HTH!

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