Wednesday, March 2, 2016

The Wrecker, the Leader, and a Really Scary Guy Who Says He Can Teach Me Hypnosis

Tales to Astonish #63 had the first and only appearance of the Wrecker:

Yeah, I know.  He had nothing to do with the Wrecker that would head the Wrecking Crew.  Marvel recycles their own names sometimes.

Anyhoo, we start with something that kinda bugs me:

I'm pretty sure this officer is visiting Giant-Man at Hank Pym's lab.  Sooooo, does everyone know who Giant-Man is?  If so, why do he and the Wasp bother with the masks?  If you know the answer to this one, please tell me in the comics because I'm confounded.

Now, as to the Wrecker:

Hmmmm... it's not that we all haven't wanted to zap Jan with some bug spray.  I'm just kinda surprised they went there.  Until I saw this in the letters column:


No kidding?  So who was the "competitor's" character that was too similar for even the Big Two to rip off one another?  I've tried to find it, but I'm having no luck.  And I GOTS TO KNOW!

Anyway, on to the Hulk story:

I'll learn the truth about Banner SOMEHOW, General!  I've heard of this great new technique called "waterboarding" I've been looking to try out!

This ish marked the first appearance of the Leader.  Sorta.  I mean, he appeared off-camera in the previous issue, so I guess a purist would say that was the first appearance.  But you just see him all covered up, so I'm on the fence as to how much that counts.  I mean, Wolverine technically first appeared in Incredible Hulk #180, but he really didn't do anything until #181 and that's the one everyone talks about, so....

Anyway, the Leader made a "humanoid" to mentally command into doing his dirty work:

Which is really similar to the Mad Thinker's "Awesome Android," who had first appeared about a year and a half earlier:

I'm not sure what the requirement is that really smart guys in the Marvel Universe have to use things like that, but being super-smart really isn't that interesting unless you can bust some heads so what else can they do?

And once again, we see the Hulk going out of his way to save people from natural disasters:

I'm not sure how long that's going to go on, but that's really contrary to the Hulk we would see in later years and I'm glad they ditched it.  If I wanted to see stuff like that, I'd read... well, pretty much every other comic book.

And Banner is in trouble again:

These military guys really can't connect the dots, can they?  The Hulk disappears and Bruce Banner inexplicably shows up in the same purple pants.


And then I saw this: 

Just one evening?  How do I know you're on the level?

Well.... Touche! (tm!)

And then there was this:

Hey!  Is that Bill Cosby?

Sorry... I try to avoid topical humor, but it was too easy a shot.

See you tomorrow!

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