Marvel Handbook

Daron, I’ve got a good amount of questions this week plus some nice debatable opinions. So, what do you think?

Well…it’s rather hard to form an opinion when I’m seeing the column for the first time. Maybe you should ask me after we’re done…

Let’s start then

George emails

hi, Got a versus question. If Darkseid is actually really huge (according to WWITDCU) without the use of the boomtubes, then who would win in a fight, Darkseid or Galactus?

Thanks and keep up the good work,

I’m going to sound like the Marvel fan I am here, and can tell right now that this is going to get people complaining, but here goes.

I’m picking Galactus. He’s one of Marvel’s Demi-God like beings. Meaning, he’s high up on the cosmic scale. He’d take Darkseid in no time.

Thanos might even take Darkseid in a fight. They did have a slight battle but not one where we got to see a full winner.

You know as much as I like Darkseid, I’m thinking the big G man would probably win this fight, if no other reason he could step on him. I think we’d need to get a real list of their various powers and whatnot so we could do a side-by-side comparison… – Daron

Beadle posted

In that case, you could do a run-down on other Mighty Marvel Materials. Like Vibranium (both types), Adamantium, Uru, and some others that I can’t think of at the moment due to a significant brain-fart.

Alright, let’s list the ones that are just Marvel based and not in our normal world.

Vibranium :

Wakandan Vibranium, is found almost exclusively in the tiny African nation of Wakanda. It absorbs vibratory energy in its vicinity, such as sound waves, with in itself

Antarctic Vibranium: found in the Savage Land, emanates vibrations, which cause the atomic molecular bonds in nearby metals of other kinds to weaken. The result is to cause nearby solid metals to liquefy.

(For more information check: Here)

Adamantium : virtually indestructible man-made steel alloy which does not occur in nature and whose exact chemical composition is a United States government classified secret. Adamantium is a series of closely related compounds of iron created through a secret process discovered Dr, Myron MacLain.

(For more info check: (For more information: Here)

Uru : chief properties are durability and ability to maintain enchantment. This
mystical metal was used to create Thor’s hammer


Anti-matter: Matter composed of particles that are the counterparts of the particles composed of positive matter but have opposite charges.

Omniurn : A steel alloy stronger than titanium but weaker than Adamantium.

Roamdog posted

I stopped reading comics in 1980 and sold 9,000 of my 9,100 books. Was in a used bookstore recently and purchased the Death of Superman compilation.

And even more important, what has happened in the last 20 years?

Almost too much to put in one article. Let’s just say most of Marvel comics have had some big events and changes along the way. Most of it got put back where it belonged. Here is a little synopsis of some of the big events over the last 20 years, as they relate to Spider-Man.

1985: Big Crossovers: Secret Wars II. Spidey events: Spidey got a new black costume off the Black Cat but not an alien costume. Spidey and DD exchanged identities. Oh and Spidey got his third title: Web of Spider-Man. Jean DeWolff died as well.

1986: Spidey events: Flash Thompson got framed of being the Hobgoblin, Spider-Man went missing for a month, Spidey lost his red and blue suit for a time.

1987: Big Crossovers: Mutant Massacre. Spidey events: The Gang War happened, Ned Leeds was revealed to be the Hobgoblin, Kraven’s Last Hunt (Death of Kraven the Hunter), Spidey entered the Mad Dog Ward, Oh and Spidey married Mary Jane Watson.

1988: Big Crossovers: Fall of the Mutants, Evolutionary War. Spidey events: Todd McFarlane came on Spidey, Spidey’s symbiote suit came back with Eddie Brock as VENOM, MJ got kidnapped for a time, Pete went back to college, Robbie got put in the hospital by Tombstone for a time, Pete put out his own book called Webs, and Spidey faced the Cult of Love.

1989: Big Crossovers: Inferno, Acts of Vengeance, Atlantis Attacks. Spidey events: Pete and MJ got evicted, Spidey faced the Red Skull in the Assassin Nation Plot, Spidey got Captain Universe powers, Robbie got put in jail for time, Hobgoblin (Jason Macendale) got demon powers

1990: Spidey events: The Sinister Six reunited, Spidey was stripped of his powers for a few months, Spidey got involved in an Acts of Vengeance aftermath, Spidey got Hulks powers for a short time, Spidey was shrunk as well, Another Spider-Man series began as Spidey had problems with the Lizard and Calypso

1991: Big Crossovers: Vibranium Vendetta, Infinity Gauntlet. Spidey events: Spidey teamed up with Ghost Rider, Wolverine and X-Force, Child Within had him facing Harry and the Vermin, Venom came back, He fought Dr Doom, Round Robin began as well with Spidey teaming up with a few heroes to fight the Secret Empire.

1992: Big Crossovers: The Hero Killers, Infinity War. Spidey events: Name Of The Rose with a new Rose and the original becoming Blood Rose, Spidey had his 30th Anniversary, Hobgoblin was split from his demon half, Carnage was born (son of Venom), Peter’s parents came back, so did the Spider-Slayers, Funeral Arrangements had a battle with the Vulture, Puma also battled Spidey in Eye of Puma, Death of Vermin cured Vermin, Sinister Six came back again for Revenge, Spidey had Phoenix powers also for a few issues.

1993: Big Crossovers: Bloodties, Infinity Crusade. Spidey events: Maximum Carnage was the event of year for the Spider titles as Carnage formed his own group to cause havoc in NY. Spidey met a team called the Jury, he lost Harry Osborn, returned to the Mad Dog Ward, fought Tombstone and Electro among others. Also gained another title Spider-Man Unlimited and alternate future version Spider-Man 2099. Venom even started his own series of limited series.

1994: Big Crossovers: Child’s Play. Spidey events: In a story called Life Theft found out his parents where fake, Pursuit: Led him after Chamelion who was behind the plot, He battled villains like Shriek, Puma, Owl, Foreigner, Typhoid Mary, Hobgoblin, Grim Hunter (son of Kraven), Lizard, and Scorpion, along the way. Even finding his clone: The Scarlet Spider. Also getting an illness that almost killed him.

1995: Big Crossovers: Age of Apocalypse. Spidey events: Now the Clone Saga takes over the book for awhile. Spidey almost dies but is saved by Doc Ock in Web of Death (Doc Ock is killed), Smoke and Mirrors brings back the Jackal, Aunt May died, Mark of Kaine: Had another clone of Spidey frame Pete for murder, Another clone of Spidey: Spider-Cide and Jackal join forces to try to take out everyone important in Pete’s life in Maximum Clonage but both died. Exiled: Pete thinks he’s the clone. Greatest Responsibility: had him give up the Spidey suit, Scarlet Spider has a series of titles for 2 months. Web of Spider-Man also ends. MJ also gets pregnant. Untold Tales of Spider-Man also starts.

1996: Big Crossovers: Onslaught, Marvel Vs DC. Spidey events: Ben Reilly (Scarlet Spider) as Spider-Man to start the year. Sensational Spider-Man joins the line. Media Blizzard: he faced Mysterio, Return of Kaine: Kaine returned, Web of Carnage: him vs. Carnage, Blood Brothers: More secrets are learned about Pete/Ben as Hobgoblin returns, After those arcs Pete loses his powers for a time getting put in the hospital, Ben faces other old foes of Spidey as well during the year until Revelations where Pete finally gets the webs back and Ben is truly the clone dying. Oh and Norman Osborn was behind it the whole time. He’s back.

1997: Big Crossovers: Heroes Reborn, Operation Zero Tolerance. Spidey events: Pete’s back. Spidey gets a mix of new and old foes with the likes of Black Tarantula, Electro, Rose, Doc Ock returns to live, Absorbing Man, Titania, Carnage, Trapster, Vulture, Chamelion, The Legion of Losers (Gibbon, Spot, Grizzley, and Kangaroo), Jack O’ Lantern II, Calypso, Kraven II, Morbius, Hydra, Juggernaut, and Shocker along the way.

1998: Spidey events: Spider-Hunt starts the year with a bang as Norman Osborn frames Spidey and has most of NY hunting him, Identity Crisis: Has Spidey taking new identities to hide himself and be a hero to find how he was framed. After wards Spidey fought Rose (Jake Connover), Black Tarantula, Plant-Man, Hydro-Man, Arcade, and Rhino, until Goblins At The Gate: Norman Osborn vs Roderick Kingsley (the original Hobgoblin) in a Goblin fight. Winner take all. Gathering of Five: Norman collects together five ancient shards necessary to enact the ritual of the five, which could grant him godlike powers. Of course he fails giving the powers to a young girl and driving himself mad. Final Chapter: Spidey in and all out drag out fight to end all the series. Spidey’s possible future daughter gets a series as well Spider-Girl. Oh and Aunt May is alive

1999: Big Crossovers: Eighth Day. Spidey events: New series of Amazing Spider-Man and Peter Parker Spider-Man as well as Webspinners and Chapter One hit the stands to fix the mistakes of the clone saga. The girl who gained the powers in the Gathering replaced Pete since he retired. She replaced him for like two issues til Pete came back. More mix and match old and new foes show up: Scorpion, Shadrac, Trapster, Sandman, Doc Ock, Mysterio, Blob, Bullseye, Kingpin, Venom, Morbius, plus the Sinister Six, The chick becomes the new Spider-Woman after some time as well.

2000: Big Crossovers: Maximum Security. Spidey events: We start the year thinking MJ dies. Doom, Ghost, Sandman, Electro, Mysterio, Green Goblin, Venom, Spider Slayers, Kraven II are among the villains of the year. Also an alternate universe version of Spider-Man is created: Ultimate Spider-Man

2001: Spidey events: MJ returns, Green Goblin, The New Enforcers, Robot Master, Fusion are among his foes. Current Amazing Spider-Man J. Michael Straczynski joins the title as Pete goes to teaching with Ezekiel and Morlun join the title. Also Spidey gets effected by 9/11

2002: Spidey events: More new foes join the titles as well as old. Shade, Doc Ock, Shathra, Vulture, Fusion, and Green Goblin are among his villains that year.

2003: Spidey events: Shocker, Sandman, Shathra, Digger, Ezekial returns as Pete & MJ Reconcile. Also Peter Parker Spider-Man ends to be replaced by Spectacular Spider-Man. Dormammu and Venom end the year. As well as Amazing Spider-Man #500 hit the stand.

2004: Big Crossovers: Avengers Disassembled. Spidey events: Chasing a Dark Shadow with Loki, Book Of Ezekiel: with Ezekial and Gatekeeper, Sins Past: Story of Gwens’ son and daughter with Norman Osborn, Countdown with Doc Ock, Lizard’s Tale with Lizard, Under My Skin: a team up with Cap, Changes with the Queen take up the years stories (Spidey gains organic webbing as well). Marvel Knight Spidey (Mark Millar at helm) also started with Down Among the Dead Men: Aunt May is kidnapped as Spidey starts looking for who did it. Venomous gives up his symbiote and kills himself. The symbiote fights Spidey with a new host.

2005: Spidey events: Mindworm appeared, Sins Remembered has started with Sarah’s story, The Last Stand: Spidey must free Norman Osborn to get Aunt May back, Skin Deep: introduces Charlie Weiderman

Did Spiderman’s girlfriend also come back?

I’m guessing you mean Gwen. Gwen is still dead.

What about Captain America’s sidekick? (Cannot remember the names).

Bucky is still dead too.

Actually, now that I have a tiny bit of disposable income, I would like to catch up on some reading.

So, what stories/titles are worth picking up? I do realize that many of the books in the 70s were drivel (and probably many now?), but I did like some stories from J. Starlin, M. Grell (although I cannot remember if I just liked his art or the actual stories), and Roy Thomas (at least the stuff that was not about golden age characters–he seemed to be preoccupied with that theme for a while). Seems like there were some good Batman storylines as wells as Daredevil.

Alright I’ll list some good story arcs (trades)

Good Starlin:

Infinity Gauntlet
Infinity War
Silver Surfer (1987-1998) 34 – 38, 40 – 48, 50
Silver Surfer/Warlock Resurrection (1993) 1 – 4
Thanos 1-6
Thanos Quest 1-2
Warlock Chronicles (1993-1994) 1 – 8
Warlock and the Infinity Watch (1992-1995) 1 – 31

M. Grell

Iron Man (1998-2004) 50 – 66

Roy Thomas

Avengers West Coast (1989-1994) 60 – 63, 65 – 101
Dr. Strange Sorcerer Supreme (1988-1996) 5 – 24, 26 – 47, 52 – 56
Mighty Thor (1966-1996): 472 – 489
Secret Defenders (1993-1995) 1 – 8
What if? (1989-1998) 1, 9, 15, 19, 24, 35 – 39

There are some great DD Trades out there:

Daredevil: Man Without Fear: limited series.
Daredevil Yellow: limited series
Daredevil: Love’s Labor Lost: Daredevil #215-217, 219-222, 225-226
Daredevil: Born Again: Daredevil #227-233
Daredevil: The Fall of the Kingpin: Daredevil #297-300
Daredevil: Fall From Grace: Daredevil #319-325
Daredevil: Typhoid: Daredevil #254-257, 259-263
Daredevil Visionaries: Kevin Smith: Daredevil (v.2) #1-8
Daredevil: Parts of a Hole: DD(vol.2) #9-15
Daredevil: Wake Up: Daredevil (vol.2) #16-19
Daredevil: Underboss: Daredevil (vol.2) #26-31
Daredevil: Out: Daredevil (vol.2) #32-40
Daredevil: Lowlife: Daredevil (vol.2) #41-45

Not even sure where to start. Given my preferences before, What would you recommend for my reading list? And why? I am a bit older and probably will enjoy the more complex stories now.

Some current titles that are great reads:

Incredible Hulk
Astonishing X-Men
New Avengers
Captain America
Iron Man

And even though this is a Marvel column I’ll offer you some ideas from the OTHER companies.

From DC/Vertigo/Wildstorm you might want to check out:

Gotham Central
Y: The Last Man
Ex Mahina

From Image

Small Gods
Walking Dead

And From Marvel I’ll echo Jim’s recommendations for Astonishing X-Men, Captain America, and Strange, and will even add Supreme Power. – Daron

Moonknight25 emails

Hey I have a few questions for you column 🙂

Whats the deal with the whole Xorn/Magento stuff? Also I’m want to know about Onslaught saga.

Someone was impersonating Magneto impersonating Xorn. You see when the X-Men found Xorn in China they thought it was the real Xorn but it turned out to be Magneto who killed Jean Grey and was killed by Wolverine. In reality it wasn’t Magneto but an imposter. Magneto and Xorn are both still alive so the question is who the imposter was and who was he working for?

What issues did Emma Frost turn good and why?

Let’s do it this way.

Emma was put in a coma by Fitzroy way back in Uncanny 290. She later came out of the coma in 314 and took over the body of Iceman for a short time then returned to her body. During the Phalanx Covenant she helped Banshee save the Next Generation of X-Men. Generation X. She became good in Generation X #1 helping teach the group.

Why did daredevil go back to his yellow outfit a few years ago?

Marvel started a line called Over the Edge. This line included DD. Daredevil started having an identity crisis and soon was wearing all 3 of his outfits on and off. Matt was trying to be everyone at once and had been driven nuts so he had to battle his inner demons before going back to just the Red.



Nate emails

Hey Jim, great column (I just got into 411comics and have been reading all of your archives and the DCU ones as well). I was wondering if you have any information on what became of the Upstarts storyline in Uncanny? Fitzroy, Shinobi Shaw, Graydon Creed, Cortez (maybe some more) were competing for points to gain…something? Fitzroy got a lot of points for killing Reavers and Hellions, Shinobi for killing his pops, etc. The last I recall was Fabian Cortez bitching about points for his “killing” Magneto and Fitzroy being very ominous about it not being confirmed. Who the hell was the Gamemaster (I think) that was running it? Sorry about the run-on, feel free to paraphrase the question if you respond.

Upstarts: Shinobi Shaw, Siena Blaze, Fabian Cortez, Graydon Creed, Trevor Fitzroy, Selene, and the Fenris Twins Andrea and Andreas Strucker.

The Upstarts are a group of humans and mutants who were vying for leadership of their own group and were given points for assassinating mutant figures.

The Upstarts were responsible for the death of the Hellions and the apparent deaths of Magneto and Sebastian Shaw.

Gamesmaster initiated the Young hunt (Child’s Play crossover), in which the goal was to capture the surviving members of the New Mutants and the Hellions, which included members of X-Force and the New Warriors. The hunt resulted in the capture of the mutants Cannonball, Meltdown, Karma, Moonstar, Empath, and the New Warriors member Firestar.

The Upstarts ended when Husk challenged the Gamesmaster to a game to determine who would lead the next generation of mutants.

Full story:

Uncanny: 281-283,299-302, Annual 17
X-Men: 4-7,22
X-Men Unlimited: 1
Excalibur: 72-74
New Warriors: 43-46
X-Force: 32-33

Now let’s finish this up. Daron you may go last if you want.

Well, maybe I want to go first this week. Don’t think you can tell me what to do, flunky. Remember who’s the boss around here.

So, yeah, have a great week everyone. See you in seven.

My last notes:

1. Cover of the Year vote continues: Here)

2. vote of the week: Now that best-selling author Orson Scott Card’s Ultimate Iron Man has hit the stands, which Ultimate character should get their own Limited Series next?

3. Next week the X-Men Then End bio gets a fresh new start here with bigger.

Have a good week everyone and keep the emails coming (label them Marvel Handbook please). Reporting from the Marvel Universe I’m Jim Trabold.