Monday, June 19, 2017

Marvel-ous Monday: "The Mark of the Metazoid" by Drake, Heck, and Tartaglione

Greetings, Groove-ophiles! Okay, the honeymoon's over with Captain Marvel. With ish #5 (June 1968), Roy and Gene have abandoned our Space-Born Super-Hero leaving writer Arnold Drake and penciler Don Heck to take over. Yeah, the mood changes very swiftly, and the direction is already shifting, but Ol' Groove's gotta say that I still dig this ish. The villain is kinda generic, and Drake's story is a bit overwrought--but that's one of those things that makes the Groovy Age so groovy to moi. And a lot of you are gonna disagree, but I dig Heck's energetic, open, dramatic pencils on this particular ish, and inker John Tartaglione stayed pretty true to Heck's style. To Ol' Groove, Dashin' Don was really good at sci-fi slanted comics, and "The Mark of the Metazoid" is a doggoned good sample of what he could do!


  1. Where stalks the Metazoid!!
    One of the issues of Captain Marvel I don't own and haven't read. An interesting issue about two characters that have a lot in common--both soldiers from militaristic societies who question the morality of their governments and their individual missions.
    Thanks, as always, Groove, for showing a forgotten corner of the Marvel Universe. An interesting post.
    Any plans for showing any of the old, pre-Starlin Power of Warlock issues? For some reason this put me in mind of that.


  2. One of my sentimental favorites for sure. I missed Gene Colan, but to my young eyes the Don Heck artwork here had a bit more punch, more in keeping with what I expected from superheroes. The Metazoid is rather scary but alas was soon forgotten.

    Rip Off

  3. Hiya,

    I've got this one, or at least the tattered remains of a copy, somewhere in my collection.

    Always thought that some of Mr Heck's difficulties at Marvel were due to the pressure placed upon him to do panel layouts in a more dynamic style than he was used to.

    Still, I do enjoy his work but believe that either Colletta or Shores would have rendered a more pleasing finish to the pencils.

    Thanks for the memories.


  4. Don Heck taking over a comic caused an immediate drop in quality, sometimes pushing a title from the top of heap to the bottom. Much like he did with Iron Man from #26 on, Mr. Heck brought Captain Marvel down from the heights of Thomas/Colan to an also ran. The title would struggle from that point on until revitalized first by Thomas/Kane then reaching the pinnacle under Jim Starlin. Arnold Drake, who wrote the very un-DC like Doom Patrol, never seemed to fit in or shine at Marvel and wasn't around for too long.

  5. This is an important post! Colan's art preceding this is undoubtedly some of my favorite from bronze/ silver age! Don Heck's art hurt me here, with Daredevil too, very much. I dropped the titles.



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