Sub-Mariner Stories to Keep You Afloat All Weekend
Namor is getting the MARVELS SNAPSHOTS treatment next month -- read his greatest stories on Marvel Unlimited now!
Next month, on Wednesday, March 11, Prince Namor AKA the Sub-Mariner gets a new story told from a new perspective in SUB-MARINER: MARVELS SNAPSHOTS #1 written by Alan Brennert with art by Jerry Ordway. After pre-ordering your copy of the first installment of MARVELS SNAPSHOTS, have a look at some of Namor's best stories from Marvel's Silver Age until now!
It’s been almost 81 years since Prince Namor McKenzie AKA the Sub-Mariner made his debut in MOTION PICTURES FUNNIES WEEKLY #1. Namor was a part of Marvel’s Golden Age comics, but he also played a much larger role in the Silver Age when he returned in the pages of 1961’s FANTASTIC FOUR. Through the years, Namor has been a hero, a villain, an anti-hero, a pariah, a king, a CEO, and more. Namor’s adventures could fill a lifetime – they can also fill out a reading list! Imperious Rex!
The Prince Awakens
After decades spent living as a derelict in New York City, Namor’s lost memories were restored by the Human Torch’s carelessness in FANTASTIC FOUR (1961) #4. Upon his reawakening, Namor discovered Atlantis in ruins and he blamed the surface world. The only thing that stemmed the tide of Namor’s hatred was his immediate infatuation with Susan Storm Richards, the Invisible Woman.
Even in Namor’s early appearances, he blurred the line between hero and villain. But Namor’s nobility was undeniable.
The Serpent Crown
Namor soon earned his first ongoing series in 1968. In SUB-MARINER #1-13, the Saga of the Serpent Crown gave Namor an epic tale that was his alone. It also forced Namor to fight for his life in the arena against Naga, the Serpent Crown’s most powerful wielder. Decades later, this storyline helped set the stage for ATLANTIS ATTACKS in 1989.
Second Chance at Love
Years after the death of Namor’s first wife Dorma, he began a relationship with Marrina in ALPHA FLIGHT (1983) #12-16. Their romance reawakened Namor’s heart, and he even took his place among Earth’s Mightiest Heroes as an Avenger. Unfortunately, tragedy struck in AVENGERS (1966) #291-293, when Marrina’s alien physiology transformed her into a monster. Namor was ultimately forced to slay his own wife for the sake of the world, and it broke his heart yet again.
A Kingdom at Stake
Of course, Namor wasn’t without his own adventures during the ‘80s. In PRINCE NAMOR, THE SUB-MARINER (1984), Namor was under siege by forces in Atlantis as well as a vengeful villain from the surface world. It also forced Namor to realize that he had failed to live up to his promises as a ruler. When faced with that truth, Namor made the hard decision to leave his birthright behind.
In His Own Words
SAGA OF THE SUB-MARINER (1988) was essentially a retelling of Namor’s history to that point in time. But the fact that it was told from Namor’s perspective added additional color to the events that shaped the Sub-Mariner. It also paved the way for Namor’s second ongoing series.
John Byrne’s run on NAMOR, THE SUB-MARINER (1990) redefined Namor as a hero of the surface world and of the oceans. In the first 25 issues, Namor formed Oracle Inc. with the help of his friends Carrie and Caleb Alexander. This allowed Namor to accomplish his goals largely outside of the public eye. Namor also made new enemies, including Desmond and Phoebe Marrs, the Super-Skrull, and even Master Khan.
NAMOR, THE SUB-MARINER #26-41 was largely a showcase for a young Jae Lee as he gave Namor a savage makeover after Master Khan wiped his memories away. Once that storyline concluded, this series continued until issue #62 in 1995.
In the aftermath of CIVIL WAR, the SUB-MARINER (2007) miniseries gave Namor a new threat to his kingdom. While Tony Stark’s Initiative took hold in the surface world, Namor faced betrayal at home and a deadly confrontation with his illegitimate son, Kamar. Namor emerged triumphant, but Atlantis was shattered... and its people became more militant than ever before.
Curse of the Mutants
Although NAMOR: THE FIRST MUTANT (2011) only had an 11-issue run, it took place during a time when Namor had embraced his mutant heritage as a member of the X-Men. It also introduced Namor to Loa, a young mutant hero who essentially became his protégé. Within these issues, Namor struggled to uphold his obligations to both Atlantis and the newly formed mutant nation, Utopia. Namor was even dragged to Hell to face a few ancient adversaries before returning to Earth and settling his claim to the throne once and for all.
Now that you've seen the last few decades of the Sub-Mariner's sensational saga, get yourself ready for a new chapter from his past!
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