Monday, 8 August 2016

The Invaders Meet The Crusaders

For our gang, The Invaders was always low on the totem pole when the new monthlies were out. We didn't like Frank Robbins, we didn't like World War 2, and we could easily get our fix of Cap & Subby elsewhere.
Bucky was interesting, 'cos technically he was dead, but sad to say, for most of the '70's, The Invaders was right down there with Human Fly and Iron-Jaw when it came to worthless comics. When swapping books with friends you couldn't give this one away.
We were, of course, completely and utterly wrong.
This was actually one of the most consistently fun team books Marvel had in the Bronze Age, Roy Thomas' ultimate love letter to the comics of his childhood, but more importantly, it's an endless barrel of craziness, with Rascally inventing new ( and ever nuttier ) characters nearly every issue.
In fact, there were now so many new WW2 heroes and villains, The Invaders nearly approaches self-parody at times, were it not for the fact that you know Thomas meant every damn fanboy word of it.
And Robbins is right up there in terms of visual excitement, his characters leaping and gyrating all over the page, in trademark bodily contortions impossible for regular artists.
Here's a prime example, where Roy & Frank see how many new characters they can squeeze into one issue, and have it all make sense.
Ah, for the days when British people in comics talked like Spitfire does here, eh wot?


  1. I couldn't agree more with your assessment of this book. Like you I was not a fan of war comics (even DCs great artistic output in this genre at this time was of little interest to me) and I did not like Robbins art at Marvel at all (I did enjoy his DC Batman and mystery and humour work though) but this book changed all that for me, I seemed to "get" his style with this one and the stories were fun as well. I bought just about every issues of the Invaders (and still have all the Robbins ones) and became a big fan of Franks art through this (and still am today). I am always on the look-out for any back issues of Franks work I missed (and I missed a lot back in the day) a genuine missed classic imho.

  2. Y'know, if I had the free time, I'd do a blog just about Frank. But then I'd also do one about Gil Kane / Jeff Jones / Jim Mooney etc etc etc.

  3. Seeing as you've already done Ironjaw, Pete, does this mean we can now expect you to post a whole issue of the Human Fly soon?


  4. Well natch! With Frank Robbins & Lee Elias it can't be all bad.

  5. Thanks for posting this. Ever since I first saw the Spirit of 76, I thought he was an exceptionally cool-looking character (nevermind that years later I found out he was a knock-off of the Fightin' Yank).

    I found this once in my old comic shop as a kid and almost bought it...but I left it in the long-box that day to walk out with some (then) recent publication, telling myself, "I'll get that next time." Of course, 'next time' never came...until today.😀

  6. This comment has been removed by the author.

  7. We've all done that, Justin!