Archive | Comics 101



Here’s a scary statistic for you. This week’s column marks the 400th column to be posted here at Comics Four hundred. That’s a lot of columns. I’m hoping to get back to the longer history columns soon, as I’m just now coming out of a very deadline-crazy period, and expect to have a little […]

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Protecting a World That Hates and Fears Them, Part II

In 1974, a suggestion was made by then-Marvel President Al Landau to introduce an international team of super-heroes that could then be sold in various countries. Marvel’s Editor-in-Chief at the time, Roy Thomas, felt this request could serve as an excellent means of reviving the X-Men, and assigned writer Len Wein and artist Dave Cockrum […]

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Gone Too Soon: Ernie Chan

All told, I really can’t complain too much about getting older. After all, it most certainly beats the alternative. But one of the things that I dislike most about no longer being a young punk is that it means I have to watch the heroes of my childhood leave us. I still find it difficult […]

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Earth’s Mightiest Covers

Had an interesting question at COMICS 101 HQ this week, from our erstwhile rasslin’ columnist, the Germantown Kid Scott Bowden. While talking AVENGERS, both movies and comics, the question was posed, “Hey, have you ever talked about your favorite AVENGERS covers on the site?” No. No, I haven’t. Let’s get right to it, shall we? […]

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Staying on Target, Part III

Previously: We’ve been talking of late about Hawkeye the marksman, the Marvel Universe’s resident archer extraordinaire, longtime Avenger and seemingly full-time member of the lonely hearts club. Brother has no luck with the ladies. When we left off last time, Hawkeye was finding his way on an Avengers team increasingly populated with much more powerful teammates, […]

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Joss Whedon Is My Master Now

So, that happened. Five days and two hundred million dollars later, THE AVENGERS holds the record for the most profitable opening weekend of all time, and director Joss Whedon is unquestionably Hollywood’s newest 800-pound gorilla, the man whose next career move is as close to “anything he wants” as any director has ever had it. […]

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Maybe Next Time

At this writing, I’m still five days away from seeing THE AVENGERS on the big screen (possibly only two if I’m lucky), and even though I’m still trying to stay as blissfully unaware of what’s in store as possible, I do know a fair amount about what we’ll be seeing in the film. And more […]

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Staying on Target, Part II

For Those Who Came In Late: Last week, we introduced you to Marvel Comics’ resident archer and malcontent, Hawkeye the Marksman. As we saw then, Hawkeye got his start as a misunderstood supervillain, repeatedly finding himself in conflict with Iron Man thanks to Hawkeye’s romantic fixation on the Soviet femme fatale the Black Widow. However, Hawkeye’s […]

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Going Rogue

We’re at just over a week and a half before AVENGERS hits theatres here in the U.S. (and I don’t need to hear from any of you European types who have already seen it, thank you very much), and it’s already more than clear that this is going to be a massive hit, and that […]

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Comics 101’s Most Wanted

As it’s become more and more more clear that I’m not really the audience for DC’s “New 52” (which isn’t a value judgment — it’s just becoming apparent that longtime fans are no longer the prime demographic, as the upcoming Earth-Two series seems to bear out), I find myself increasingly looking to back issues for […]

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Silver Age Insanity

One of my favorite things about the San Diego Comic-Con is the annual back-issue crawl that t Chris Ryall and I make on Sunday afternoon. Quickly filing through aisles and aisles of quarter and dollar longboxes, it’s the most prime example of comic-book Darwinism. Each comic-book cover has maybe a second and a half to […]

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WonderCon Goes South

After 25 years as a Northern California fixture, the long-running convention WonderCon made its Southern California debut last weekend in Anaheim, with decidedly mixed results. One thing’s for sure: any of the long-running scuttlebutt about Anaheim being a suitable substitute venue for WonderCon can be easily dismissed at this point. Not only were hotels as […]

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A New League for a New Age

A New League for a New Age

If it worked before, it’ll work again. That was what DC Comics editor Julius Schwartz must have been thinking in late 1959, as he prepared for the debut of the latest feature in his burgeoning line of super-hero titles. He had already revived the Flash and Green Lantern in the pages of the anthology book SHOWCASE, both of which […]

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Welcoming the Future, Treasuring the Past.