Monday, May 29, 2017

Marvel-ous Monday: "A Blast from the Past!" by Stern, Elias, and Mooney

Greetings, Groove-ophiles! Omega the Unknown #8 (February 1977) was second of two infamous fill-in issues. Writer Roger Stern and Penciler Lee Elias don't seem to have gotten the memo about not making waves, continuity-wise, during their filler ish, as we get some new faces from Omega co-creator Gerber's cancelled Man-Thing mag. Perhaps Gerber and fellow writer/co-creator Mary Skrenes were at least in on what was going on, as this ish smoothly segues into next issue (with the return of Gerber and Skrenes at the typewriter). Regular artist Jim Mooney supplies the inks, by the way, keeping some continuity going for this fill-in.

What Ol' Grovoe really gets a kick out of is the appearance of Captain Marvel villain Nitro. Only in a classic Marvel mag would a villain show up to fight a hero in the wrong hero's mag! And Omega, being a hero (or whatever he was), was obliged to duke it out with our explosive bad-guy. Another irony (we didn't know about at the time) was the fact that Nitro was out to kill Mar-Vell--not knowing that their first battle back in Captain Marvel #34 was actually slowly killing our Kree Captain....
Cover art by Gil Kane and Frank Giacoia


















3 comments:

  1. I'd not heard of Omega prior to following comic blogs. I'm assuming he was out of Marvel's active roster by 1988.

    Honestly, I've been pretty underwhelmed by the character (though this particular story was a little better).

    Are there any long-term Omega fans out there who'd like to tell me what I'm missing?

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    1. I think part of the problem is the clunky artwork of Jim Mooney. He kicked around the industry for decades turning out substandard pencilling and inking. I understand he was one of Stan Lee's best friends, so that guaranteed him work. Unfortunately, for us the consumer, that work wasn't too inspiring.

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  2. "Writer Roger Stern and Penciler Lee Elias don't seem to have gotten the memo about not making waves, continuity-wise, during their filler ish, as we get some new faces from Omega co-creator Gerber's cancelled Man-Thing mag..."

    Alternately, isn't it possible that Steve and Mary (or some permutation thereof) actually wrote the pages introducing Richard Rory to James-Michael? Those six pages can be detached from the rest of the issue pretty neatly with no interaction between them. At bare minimum, Gerber and Skrenes could easily have written a plotting note that said "At some point in this issue give us a sequence where Ruth, Amber, and James meet Richard Rory coming in on the bus and take him back to their apartment" and then the dialogue got written after the pages were drawn. Or those pages could have been fully scripted by the regular writing team and then slotted into the existing filler story by Stern for Lee Elias to draw. Either way, those pages with James-Michael read like they're written in Gerber's voice rather than by Stern.

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