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Marvel 1985 #1+2

July 14, 2008

While I was looking for the first Marvel comic I wanted to review for this site, I stumbled onto Marvel 1985, a six issues mini-series created by Mark Millar and Tommy Lee Edwards. Millar is probably one of the most original story writers at the moment, because he constantly comes up with something new and interesting to keep the readers on the go. I just put down the second issue and the feeling I had while reading the first two books, was quite remarkable. I was instantly catapulted back into my childhood, a time where you still wonder about the world around you, thinking that superheroes are real and wishing you could meet one of them.

Millar takes this notion and creates an incredible series around the possibility of superheroes and -villains invading our reality. The story revolves around young Toby, a thirteen year old boy whose parents have recently been divorced and whose sole comfort lies in escaping his reality through twenty-four pages of superhero action. His life as a teenager in the mid-eighties is pretty uneventful until he catches a glimpse of what he thinks to be Redskull standing at a window of an old house, Toby happens to visit with his father. He returns at night to satisfy his curiosity, but then he discovers Doctor Doom and Mole Man at the old villa and it finally dawns on him: They are all real. He tries to escape, but runs into yet another creature from his comic books, the Incredible Hulk. Here ends the first issue and one thing is clear for me: I’m hooked.

Luckily the second issue is also already available and I don’t have to wait a month to know how the encounter with the Hulk will end. In this book we are introduced to a few other villains and it becomes clear that a full scale invasion has taken place. So here we are now, unaware of what will happened to Toby’s world and who will stand in the way of the vicious criminals.

Mark Millar once again manages to surprise and immerge the reader in a fantastic world. Setting his story in our reality and in a specific timeframe makes it very easy to trade places with the teenage comic enthusiast. The art of Tommy Lee Edwards fits the 80s setting perfectly and is incredibly deep and satisfying. His depiction of the characters is spot on, as he manages to recreate the design exactly like it was in the eighties Marvel books. I for one can’t wait to read the next issue (which will of course be reviewed here).

Toby: “My parents’ divorce and a random issue of IRONMAN was all it took to reel me back into this simple world where every problem could be solved in twenty-four pages.”

Story                  9

Art                      9

Reread Value     9

Overall rating    9/10

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