Last week I presented a list of ten notable comic book runs that were inexplicably not available on the digital comics e-commerce site ComiXology. This included classic issues of Fantastic Four, Justice League of America, and Amazing Spider-Man. Well, this week things got a little better for fans of those titles, as ComiXology has added portions of those classic runs to its site this week.
The biggest news on the back-issue front is the digital release of ten classic Stan Lee and Jack Kirby issues of Fantastic Four, plus Fantastic Four Annual #2. FF #31-40 features some of the most pivotal moments in “World’s Greatest Comics Magizine’s” history. They include the engagement of Reed Richards to Sue Storm, the origin of the Dragon Man, the death of Sue and Johnny Storm’s father (a.k.a The Invincible Man), and the forming of the Frightful Four. The later event introduced the then-villainous Madam Medusa to the world, and paved the way for the introduction of The Inhumans a few issues later (which is sadly still not available.) The run also features battles with the Mole Man, the Skrulls, and the legendary “Battle of the Baxter Building” against Doctor Doom. Doom is also the spotlight of Fantastic Four Annual #2, which features more of the sinister sovereign of Latveria’s backstory.
ComiXology also added the first several issues of Roger Stern’s memorable run as scripter of The Amazing Spider-Man. ASM #224-228 feature classic Spidey confrontations with The Vulture and Foolkiller, and the return of the Black Cat. ASM #228, scripted by fan-favorite writer Jan Strnad, is also included in the mix.
Also of note, there are several notable issues from the “Satellite Era” Justice League of America I mentioned that are currently listed which I’m at least 98% sure weren’t there last week when I wrote the original article. This includes the Steve Englehart-scripted JLA #146, in which Red Tornado was rebuilt and rejoined the league. (Hawkgirl also finally became an official member that issue.) Also online is JLA #161, in which Zatanna (and her sometimes maligned, but way-underrated “genie” costume) joins the League after being voted in by readers.
More JLA issues featuring George Perez’s brief run on the book are also showing up on ComiXology as well. These include JLA 192-194, and JLA #200 a giant-sized anniversary which also features art from legendary DC artists like Gil Kane, Jim Aparo, Pat Broderick, Joe Kubert, Carmine Infantino, and Dick Giordano. The anniversary issue was also the first time Brian Bolland drew Batman in a DC comic book. JLA #193 is also notable for including the first appearance of the All-Star Squadron in a 16-page preview for the series. Sadly, the JLA’s trip to the USSR to fight the Shaggy Man in the very cool Perez-penciled JLA #186 still isn’t available.
I’m going to write it up as coincidence that these issues are up this week after I mentioned them in last week’s article. If the Superboy or All-Star Comics issues I mentioned last week had popped up, I’d be more suspicious...and narcissistic. Now if ComiXology did more to improve on its Silver-Age back-issue department, we could all be happy.
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