|Copyright MARVEL COMICS|
Time marches relentlessly on, and I find myself amazed by the fact that seven Annuals over a six year period were first published between 43 to 49 years ago. In that time I went from being a mere schoolboy to a working 'adult', yet I doubt I was aware of the distinction back then. I was just me, the same as always, and very often we're not really conscious of such changes in our circumstances until long after the fact. Or are we? It certainly doesn't feel like it to me in retrospect.
Anyway, several posts back I said I'd do a cover gallery of all 7 Marvel Annual tie-ins to the weekly comic The Mighty World Of Marvel, and as the final three that I needed to complete my collection arrived at Castel Crivens today, there's not much sense in hanging about. I remember reading somewhere that the cover of the Annual for 1979 was drawn by Frank Miller (and I may well have repeated that claim on the blog somewhere), but inside the book itself, the cover is attributed to Tony DeZuniga and Pablo Marcos.
Perhaps there's a story behind it. Is the book correct or is it a mistaken attribution after a last minute change of plan where Frank Miller had to step in to the breach after the credits were prepared? I assume that whoever first made the claim must have a reason for crediting it to Miller, so if anyone knows anything about the subject, kindly step up to the plate and enlighten us, ta much.
I suspect (though I'm not 100% certain) that I had all of these Annuals back in the day, though there's a possibility I might've missed a couple of the later ones. However, even if I did buy all of them as they appeared, I didn't always keep them from one year to the next, so today is the first time that I've owned all seven at the same time.
So which one's your favourite cover, fellow Crivvies? I tend to favour the first two, though the 1976 one by Herb Trimpe is good. Couldn't say whether he drew it specially for us Brits or it was lifted from a previous US source, but it's a nice piece of work. Anyone know if it appeared elsewhere first and was 'borrowed' for the Annual? Again, if so, share the details with your fellow Crivvies.
I have completed my task of attempting to entertain you all. 'Tis now your task to be entertained - so get to it and check out these captivating covers!
Incidentally, the 1975 book is the only one to have a different back cover, so I've included that as well. The '76-'79 books had the same illustration on the back as on the front, but without the Marvel masthead. The covers of the '73-'74 Annuals were the exact same on the back as on the front, mastheads and all.