Friday, 24 June 2016

Queen Of The Werewolves!

Nobody liked fill-in issues. They were those one-off inventory pieces that suddenly appeared right in the middle of a story you were really enjoying, the creative team on the book being cursed by the Dreaded Deadline Doom.
But at least a fill-in was better than a reprint, especially if said reprint was wrapped in a tricksy cover that made you think you were actually buying a new story. Until you got home and opened to the front page, and realised you'd been ripped off with yet another stinky copy of the main characters' origin.
Sometimes though, the fill-in was as good as the regular issues, like here with Captain America & The Falcon #164.
It's by Steve Englehart, then right in the middle of his classic Cap run, and illustrated by Alan Weiss, who never did enough work in the Bronze Age for me, and it's even got John Romita doing some blindingly obvious Cap paste-on faces, AND Jim Starlin on colours!
It has little to nothing to do with the issues preceding or following it, but seems to exist in a barking mad, vivid universe all it's own, making little sense unless as some kind of fever dream.
It's also all a bit pervy; I mean, what the hell is Nick Fury wearing?? Is that a regulation SHIELD combat outfit or has he finally gone the whole hog and decided to be a pirate?
And as for Deadly Nightshade, sure, she's a great villainess, but she was very confusing for little 'ol pre-pubescent me, as in: I knew I liked what I was looking at, but didn't quite know why....
And they say comics don't corrupt kids.


  1. One things that was great about Alan Weiss was his attention to anatomy. You could tell he had those Bridgeman anatomy books either around or memorized. You are right about Nick Fury's offbeat outfit, which resembles something out of a survivalist training corps.

  2. Actually, Pete, thats not quite right about this story having nothing to do with what followed, as Deadly Nightshade did in fact return, post-Englehart, for an even more barking mad issue.
    Cap 189 (and yes, I am aware its a bit sad I actually know that) although if you're interested I should warn you its drawn by Frank Robbins.

    And people say the Kirby issues are peculiar...


  3. Are you sure this was supposed to be a fill-in story? I can't see anything about it that would seem to indicate it.

    And that second appearance by Nightshade may have been barking mad, but I think it was less because of Robbins' artwork, and more the story it illustrated.

  4. Always seemed that way to me, but maybe that's just me.

  5. That's a weird one alright...especially Nick Fury: Cimmerean Warlord.😉