Saturday, December 17, 2011

Return Of The Golden Age!

Easily one of the most exciting comics I ever read was The Avengers #97, the furious conclusion to the Kree-Skrull War which had been running through nearly a year's worth of the Assemblers comics. The artist on most of the storyline had been Neal Adams, who had teamed with Roy Thomas to create a true masterpiece. But deadlines were always an issue with Adams and the ultra-reliable John Buscema was pressed into service to finish the story. Under the graceful inking of Tom Palmer, I believe Buscema did a handsome job on this last installment.

Under a lush Gil Kane and Bill Everett cover the story unfolds. A double page spread featuring the memories of Rick Jones serves well to bring the reader up to date.

After this reprise the stage is set for one of the greatest finales ever fabricated in comics. Out of the mind and memories of Rick Jones spring versions of classic Timely heroes to take on Ronan the Accuser and his motley Kree.

It's difficult at this stage to explain, but it was truly mind-blowing to me as a youth to see this mini-army of heroes explode onto the page. I was thrilled, and still get excited to see these powerful pages featuring Captain America, Namor the Submariner, the Human Torch, the Angel, the Blazing Skull, the Fin, the Patriot, and the Vision.

The heroes emerge and take down the enemy before fading back into Golden memory from which they came. But they wouldn't stay down long.

Roy loved the Golden Age heroes and had brought them back at almost any juncture he could. I began as a young reader to yearn to see these colorful heroes on a regular basis. I dreamed of a series set in the days of World War II perhaps, and several years later we dreamers were rewarded for our patience with The Invaders.

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