Thursday, January 21, 2010

"Post No. 683"


Wayyy back in 1962, I was just getting into any superhero titles produced by Marvel, which wasn't very many. About all they had to offer at first was The Fantastic Four and Tales to Astonish w/"Ant-Man", but I knew already that I was hooked on that company during the 1960's.

I'd seen various other titles they'd produced, mostly under the Atlas banner for a couple of years by then, all of which contained either fantasy, sci-fi and/or monster tales. Of those there was one title that stood out from all others: Amazing Adult Fantasy. Each issue in its short run of eight issues (the first six being titled Amazing Adventures) was chocked full of the work of my favorite of the Marvel bullpen, being, of course, Steve Ditko.

Right at the end of this run with issue #14 (the next, and last, issue, being retitled again to simply Amazing Fantasy which introduced some minor character called "Spider-man"), they ran a short tale called "The Man In The Sky", which was all about a mutant named Tad Carter with great mental powers. According to one interview with Stan Lee that I read in Marvel Age, he'd probably intended this to be an ongoing series, but ... well... sort'a forgot about it when Spidey was introduced and became popular.

Instead the basis for "TMITS" went on to be incorporated into "The X-Men", as in that tale there had a being contacting Carter to join in with other like mutants.

I always thought that would have been a great storyline that could have run through practically every Marvel title, especially back in the early 1990's when they were known for doing such things. A story something like, Prof. X found Carter to be way too powerful a mutant and put him into some sort of suspended status, only to have him break free and now be quite insane and rage havok throughout the Marvel Universe. I always thought they missed their opportunity with that storyline with "Phoenix" when she went bad, keeping it all within the X-Men title. In fact, I wrote the then Marvel editor (I think maybe it was Bill Mantlo) suggesting such. But, as usual, I got one of those typical BS replies that Marvel didn't lend to accepting unsolicited story ideas from "their fans".

Oddly enough, it wasn't too long after that, that both "Man In The Sky" story was miraculously "rediscovered" and reprinted in an issue of Marvel Age, and then a story a little something like it ran through the pages of their x-titles called "Legion". Not that I suggest anyone got the idea from me, but I still wonder "why' they just didn't use the Tad Carter character instead of creating something new?

If they thought it too old for their current readers to relate to, just re-introduce him as a NEW one. But...anyhoo as Stan would say. I still think it's a great tale that someone at Marvel should expand on today.

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