Monday, May 21, 2018

Marvel-ous Monday: "Nova" by Wolfman, J. Buscema, and Sinnott

Greetings, Groove-ophiles! Wow, has it been nearly a DECADE since Ol' Groove posted this article about The Man Called...Nova? Wow! Well, what I said back then still goes today: Young Groove dug and Ol' Groove still digs Nova! Yeah, it was a Marvel-ous mix of Green Lantern's origin, Superman's powers, Archie Andrew's pals and gals (maybe a dash of Welcome Back Kotter's  Sweathogs), and Peter Parker-y angst (actually, the more I think about it, the more I feel Richard Rider was a mix of Archie Andrews and a teen-aged Charlie Brown), but it was FUN! Naturally, yers trooley had been diggin' stuff like Warlock, Deathlok, Black Panther, Killraven, et al, but Nova was different. Not so heavy as the aforementioned strips; more like an updated Silver Age Marvel mag. And of course, the art by John Buscema and Joe Sinnot (soon followed in ish #3 by the art team of Sal Buscema and Tom Palmer) blew me away, as well. And who knew that this was creator Marv Wolfman's "try out" mag (if you will) for writing super-hero sagas in a style that would make him a super-star in the 1980s with New Teen Titans? Remember, besides a few Supergirl sagas and a pretty good stint on Daredevil, Marv was best know as a horror and humor writer (Tomb of Dracula and Crazy Magazine) up until his Nova series. Hmmph. So much for Ol' Groove's short intro! Let's travel back to the last day of seventh grade (for me, that is) in June 1976 and dig into Nova #1!
Cover art by Rich Buckler and Joe Sinnott


  1. Loved the early issues of Nova the Human Rocket. The series didn't miss a beat when Big John handed off the artist chores to his brother Sal, in face for that feature they might have improved. To be honest when Nova burst onto the scene, the Marvel Universe had gotten a tad stale, with DD, Spidey, and other heroes seeming to fight the same villains over and over. That's strictly fair, but with Nova came a brand spanking new bevy of super-villains, many with a Flash Rogues Gallery vibe. Each issue was full of discovery. It lost some tempo when the Yellow Claw showed up and Carmine Infantino took the helm. It was still great art, but not quite so awesome as before. Eventually like so many Bronze Age characters, the Human Rocket sputtered out, but not before leaving a big impression on my memory. Thanks for igniting them all over again.

    Rip Off

    1. He did have a great rogue's gallery. And now that you mention it, they were very Flash-like in their unique and off-centeredness.

  2. I loved Nova when it came out. It was a breath of fresh air in 70s Marvel. A little more innocent and less complicated. I wasn't enamored of the Buscema/Sinnott art (In one interview I read of Big John's he said he never liked the way Sinnott finished him) and was happy when Sal and Palmer took over. The arrival of Carmine Infantino added to the nostalgic feel of the series and once Tom Palmer rejoined the team things took off. But the 70s readership didn't appreciate the lighter tone of Nova and I was sad when the final issue # 25 came out. Fortunately, Nova got a second chance in the 90s with The New Warriors and has been around in one concept or another since.

  3. Its always great to see any blog do an article on my fave Human Rocket! For more nostalgia check out Nova Prime Page for more on the early Golden Age issues as well as the more modern stuff that followed

  4. Its always great to see a blog do Nova especially this one. Didn't know you were a fan! Check out Nova Prime Page for both classic and modern Human Rocket goodness as well as Fan art and fics from fans in the creative sections!



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Special thanks to Mike's Amazing World of Comics and Grand Comics Database for being such fantastic resources for covers, dates, creator info, etc. Thou art treasures true!

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