May 29, 2020

Spider-Rama: Marvel Team-Up #1


Welcome to Spider-Rama! Every weekday until the end of May, Ben and Duy will look at a Spider-Man issue from the very beginning, in chronological order, and answer questions for various categories, inspired in large part by one of our favorite podcasts, The Rewatchables by The Ringer. Our goal is to make it to Amazing Spider-Man #200. Will we make it? Grab your Amazing Spider-Man Omnibus or crank up your tablet to Marvel Unlimited, and then tune in every Wednesday to find out!

MARVEL TEAM-UP #1
by Roy Thomas, Ross Andru, and Mike Esposito

Spider-Man and the Human Torch, together again! Against the Sandman!



POINTLESS TRIVIA 

BEN: This is technically the first time Spider-Man got a second ongoing series alongside Amazing Spider-Man . It only made sense for the Human Torch to be the first character he teams up with. 

DUY: The Human Torch made 9 appearances in the Steve Ditko era (Amazing Spider-Man 1, 3, 5, 8, Annual, 17, 18, 19, 21) and then only a couple more after that (76 and 77). As mentioned before, Ditko didn't really want guest stars in Amazing, so it's not a coincidence that the appearances stopped when he got the reins. And with the benefit of time, it's clear that Johnny is the perfect complement to Peter. Roy Thomas, probably the first of the fans-turned-pros, probably was a fan of the very early issues. 

BEN: The only writer that keeps Roy Thomas from topping my least favorite list is JMS.

DUY: While Marvel Roy is pretty cookie-cutter (I kinda love him at DC), I'm sure there are writers I dislike more that aren't JMS.

BEN: He’s so plain I find it annoying.

DUY: Ross Andru will eventually be chosen for a big Spider-Man project, so let's keep an eye out for when he gets to the level where that decision is justified.  And Sandman is a villain both Peter and Johnny have fought, so the choice for Sandman makes sense. The other options are Paste Pot Pete and the Beetle.

BEN: This will not count as her first appearance, but this was later retconned to be Misty Knight, longtime supporting character for Luke Cage and Iron Fist, and one of the Daughters of the Dragon. It would chronologically be the first time she appeared in a comic.


WHAT'S AGED THE BEST?

BEN: Ross Andru will be a significant artist in the history of Spider-Man, though his art is a bit crude here. I love a good water tower death trap.



DUY: This is hilarious. Johnny is stuck in self-isolation (something we can all relate to these days, unless you're an essential worker or one of those idiots who don't care if you kill anyone) so he'll just talk to anyone.


BEN: I feel like Johnny will always talk anyone’s ear off.

WHAT'S AGED THE WORST?

BEN: 'Nuff said.



DUY:  Speaking of bad outfits, why is the Sandman in a costume? When did this happen?



BEN: I think it’s from when he joined the Frightful Four.

NITPICKS

DUY: 
I'm fairly certain no amount of fatigue is going to screw up depth perception this badly.



BEN: You’re not taking into account how many concussions they get on a regular basis.

DUY: This is out of character. Which is not to say this has never happened and will never happe
ned again, because it will and it will eventually lead to the creation of the Hobgoblin. It's just out of character.


BEN: He has his moments when he stops caring but then he runs into an old man that looks like Uncle Ben. 

FAVORITE PANEL

BEN:
 Sappy, but there wasn’t much to pick from in this issue:



DUY: I like the double-team move:


WHO WON THE COMIC? 

DUY: The two guys mugging Misty, who basically get let off with a stern warning because it's Christmas.

BEN: Green polka-dotted shirts.

DUY: That's it for Spider-Rama this week. 

BEN: Thank you, Stan Lee and Steve Ditko— 

DUY: —for telling us we aren't the only ones. 

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