Monday 1 December 2014

1977: THE HUMAN FLY Issue 1 (Marvel Comics)

From 1977: Another Marvel venture into the realms of licensed comics... THE HUMAN FLY.

This was based on the exploits of the alter-ego of real-life stunt performer Rick Rojatt (and not to be confused with Marvel's existing Spider-man villain of the same name).  A quick bit of Goggle action reveals that his final stunt was also in 1977, suggesting that Marvel came to the party a little late.

The problem with making a stunt man into a comic book superhero is that, on paper, his "real life" stunts would never look as impressive as those carried out by his super-powered contemporaries.  

Regardless, the comic book version managed a commendable nineteen issue run before shuttering.  As with many of Marvel's other licensed properties of the period, HF was fully integrated into the MCU with occasional appearances by Marvel properties including Ghost Rider in issue 3.  

It was also another book from the prolific Bill Mantlo, Marvel's go-to guy for licensed properties.

There was never any British editions (although this is a cents-to-pence import for sale in the UK), presumably because the character had no relevance here.  Or, Marvel's license didn't extend to a UK edition. 

This issue was another recent bargain box find.  I imagine that similar licensing problems (plus general disinterest) to those that have nixed reprints of ROM and THE MICRONAUTS have prohibited Marvel (or anyone else) from ever putting these stories back into print. 

I love his oh-so-phallic "belt" as well.  

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