Culture & Lifestyle
Published June 3, 2019

This Week in Marvel History: May 31-June 6

See what happened at Marvel on these dates in its 80-year history!

Marvel's 80th Anniversary

With Marvel celebrating its 80th anniversary this year – and to scratch my own history and research itches – every week I’m digging through a whole host of important dates and details for a special segment of This Week in Marvel called… (wait for it) … This Week in Marvel History! Important comics, storylines, character appearances and moments, real world releases and special Marvel milestones—it’s all part of TWIMH! Here are just a few Marvel History notes for the week of May 31-June 6!

May 31

1960: TALES TO ASTONISH #12 gives us a classic big monster with Gorgilla by Stan Lee and Jack Kirby. This is the beginning of the dawn of the Marvel Age, but the monster action is straight fire at this point!

Tales to Astonish (1959) #12

What is Marvel Unlimited?

1977: Brian Falsworth took on the mantle of Union Jack in the pages of INVADERS #20. The same day, Bushmaster made his first appearance in IRON FIST #15.

June 1

1965: The Warriors Three—Fandral, Hogun, and Volstagg—debuted in JOURNEY INTO MYSTERY #119! In JOURNEY INTO MYSTERY ANNUAL #1, Hercules—THE LION OF OLYMPUS!—entered the Marvel Universe.

The Wand of Watoomb was first revealed in AMAZING SPIDER-MAN ANNUAL #2.

1967: THE GREATEST CHARACTER IN COMIC BOOK HISTORY DEBUTED IN TALES OF SUSPENSE #93 – IF THIS BE M.O.D.O.K.! Stan and Jack introduced one of the oddest, most perfect and transcendent characters in all of fiction. Don’t @ me.

MODOK debut
TALES OF SUSPENSE (1959) #93

Jimmy Woo, agent supreme and man of action, made his first Silver Age appearance in STRANGE TALES #160. He’d previously been introduced in the 1956 Atlas comic, YELLOW CLAW.

1982: Wolverine’s first solo series debuted, a four-issue affair featuring Wolverine in Japan (also battling a bear, not in Japan) by Chris Claremont and Frank Miller.

Wolverine (1982) #1

What is Marvel Unlimited?

June 2

1964: The Owl debuted in the pages of DAREDEVIL #3. Over in JOURNEY INTO MYSTERY #107, the Grey Gargoyle and Karnilla, Queen of the Norns, debuted in separate stories.

1966: THOR #131 introduced the Warlock’s Eye as well as the alien race known as the Rigellians.

1987: John Walker became Captain America in CAPTAIN AMERICA #333. Not his first super-identity, not his last!

June 3

1980: Dr. Karl Malus was introduced in SPIDER-WOMAN #30. Malus would later be adapted for the screen and show up in “Marvel’s Jessica Jones” Season 2.

2010: The Avengers Academy, along with characters Finesse, Hazmat, Mettle, Striker, and Veil were all introduced in AVENGERS ACADEMY #1 by Christos Gage and Mike McKone. Great series with a cool twist to it!

Avengers Academy (2010) #1

What is Marvel Unlimited?

2011: “X-Men: First Class” opened in theaters, providing a new direction and new series for the incredible movie franchise.

June 4

1968: Tiger Shark swam his way into the Marvel Universe for the first time in SUB-MARINER #5. NICK FURY, AGENT OF S.H.I.E.L.D. #1 was released, with one of my all-time favorite covers by Jim Steranko. It has been referenced countless times.

1985: Longshot and Spiral debuted in LONGSHOT #1 by Ann Nocenti, Arthur Adams, and Whilce Portacio. LONGSHOT HAS FOUR FINGERS!

Longshot #1
LONGSHOT (1985) #1

June 5

1959: Monstro smashes and rages in a Jack Kirby cover for JOURNEY INTO MYSTERY #54. The Monstro story is by Steve Ditko. Business for Marvel is picking up!

1962: Could this be the most impactful single week in Marvel history? Hmmm!

One of the most important comics in history is released—AMAZING FANTASY #15, which featured the first Spider-Man story starring Peter Parker as Spidey, Aunt May, Uncle Ben, Crusher Hogan, and Flash Thompson. It also featured the immortal phrase, “With great power, there must also come great responsibility.” Stan Lee and Steve Ditko changed comics with Spidey, and it all started here!

Amazing Fantasy (1962) #15

What is Marvel Unlimited?

Over in JOURNEY INTO MYSTERY #83, Stan Lee, Larry Lieber, and Jack Kirby gave us the first appearance of Thor, his previous connection with Donald Blake, and the Stone Men from Saturn—Korg’s people.

Also on this day, Hank Pym became Ant-Man in TALES TO ASTONISH #35 by Stan, Larry, and Jack.

1990: Last week we mentioned Gambit’s first cameo appearance, but here he is in all his trench-coated glory for the first time in UNCANNY X-MEN #266.

June 6

1972: The Shaper of Worlds was introduced in INCREDIBLE HULK #155. Shaper is essentially a kind of Cosmic Cube that gained sentience and took on a bit of the look and personality of its previous wielder—a really jerktastic Skrull emperor. A very cool, very weird, cosmic character.

2001: One of my all-time favorite runs of comics began in EXILES #1 by Judd Winick and Mike McKone. The team was put together by a mysterious “Timebroker” who had the squad traveling to different realities to fix problems that could affect the entire multiverse. The team included Blink from the Age of Apocalypse, Nocturne—a daughter of Nightcrawler and Scarlet Witch, as well as different versions of familiar characters—Thunderbird, Mimic, Morph, and Magnus. Their first mission? Deal with a murderous version of Charles Xavier. THIS SERIES IS MY EVERYTHING.

Exiles (2001) #1

What is Marvel Unlimited?

For more about these events and more Marvel news and history, tune in to This Week in Marvel every Friday wherever you get podcasts!

For more about Marvel’s 80th Anniversary, visit marvel.com/marvel80!

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