Meet one of the most deadly and persistent super villains of all-time!

1917 to 2017: 100 years of Kirby.

Join us to celebrate Jack “King” Kirby’s 100th birthday by learning about the characters and stories he created that changed comics forever. To commemorate Jack’s centennial, we’ve sat down with the modern-day creators he influenced—and the decades of work he gifted us all.

How do you stop a villain from the future, who knows the past and also comes stocked with weaponry to make even Tony Stark’s head spin? Jack Kirby and Stan Lee answered that very question in 1964 with AVENGERS #8. In that issue, Earth’s Mightiest Heroes met at Stark’s mansion by request from the Pentagon who showed them a video of an unidentified flying object landing in Virginia. Unafraid of the human element, the craft’s pilot smoothed over a mile of forest to land and then used another ray to vibrate the approaching tanks to pieces!

Before long, the invader revealed himself as Kang, the Conqueror! At the government’s request, the Avengers flew off to investigate. When they arrived at the craft, they found their foe lounging on an invisible, floating chair, completely unimpressed with their appearance. The villain then very simply stated his objective of taking over the entire planet and backed that up by tossing the mighty super heroes around like paper dolls.

Once the under-secretary of defense showed up, Kang explained that he had been born in the year 3000, mastered time travel, and then visited the past as Rama-Tut, first seen in FANTASTIC FOUR #19. While trying to return to his home time, he actually went to the year 4000 where warring barbarians wielded technologically advanced weapons built in a bygone era. However, the self-styled Conqueror grew bored with the war-ravaged climes and decided to return to an earlier Earth. He ordered his minions to build him another time machine and that’s how he came face to face with the Avengers.

Avengers (1963) #8

Avengers (1963) #8

  • Published: September 10, 1964
  • Added to Marvel Unlimited: November 13, 2007
  • Penciller: Jack Kirby
  • Cover Artist: Jack Kirby
What is Marvel Unlimited?

Uninterested in Kang’s claims of dominance, the Avengers attacked the would-be despot, but didn’t fair well. The time traveler zapped Giant-Man, deflected Mjolnir, and foiled Wasp’s attempts at de-powering his helmet. Tired of the battle, the rogue had the male members of his opposition sucked into holding cells inside his ship and then gave the world an ultimatum: surrender or die.

Kang would soon learn the error of his ways in ignoring The Wasp and Rick Jones, though. Jones called in his Teen Brigade pals and feigned allegiance, causing all kinds of trouble along the way. They even managed to free our heroes! Meanwhile, Wasp searched Hank Pym’s lab and found a power ray she thought would tip the scales in their favor.

Reunited, the Avengers pressed their attack, which included a blast from the gun that unleashed a suit-melting acid on Kang. The invader then unleashed a Neutrino Missile, but Iron Man easily deflected it as Giant-Man sealed off the launchers on the ship. Besieged and beleaguered, The Conqueror could do nothing more than retreat to his chronal conveyance and make a hasty retreat! And that’s how you beat a time traveler!

Check out more Kang in video game form with “LEGO Marvel Super Heroes 2”!

Stay tuned to Marvel.com for more throughout Kirby Month and beyond! And join the conversation on all of our social channels with the hashtag #Kirby100.

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The FF's fifth anniversary was marked by Doom stealing the Silver Surfer's powers.

1917 to 2017: 100 years of Kirby.

Join us to celebrate Jack “King” Kirby’s 100th birthday by learning about the characters and stories he created that changed comics forever. To commemorate Jack’s centennial, we’ve sat down with the modern-day creators he influenced—and the decades of work he gifted us all.

Traditionally, you celebrate a fifth anniversary with a gift of wood. The Fantastic Four would have probably appreciated a discarded piece of drywall instead of the challenges Stan Lee and Jack Kirby threw at their heroes in the pages of FANTASTIC FOUR #5760!

Fantastic Four (1961) #57

Fantastic Four (1961) #57

  • Published: December 10, 1966
  • Added to Marvel Unlimited: November 13, 2007
  • Penciller: Jack Kirby
  • Cover Artist: Jack Kirby
What is Marvel Unlimited?

The adventure began with Reed, Sue and Ben getting duped into thinking Sandman and The Wizard planned on confessing to their crimes as a ruse to break out of prison. Sandman succeeded, which Wizard said was part of their plan, but the team felt blindsided by their efforts. Later, Sandman attacked the FF in their own home and made off with some of Mr. Fantastic’s equipment.

Meawhile, Doctor Doom worked on a scheme of his own as he invited the Silver Surfer to visit Castle Doom. Intrigued, the spaceman accepted and demonstrated his astonishing mastery of Cosmic Power to the Latverian leader. The Surfer would live to regret this display and the trust he placed in his host as Doom distracted his guest and then stole his power!

To prove himself, Doom rode the Surfer’s board to Manhattan where he crashed through the FF’s headquarters only to find the Thing there. The ensuing battle tore through the Big Apple until the villain used Vibration Rays to slow Grimm to a standstill, turning him into a temporary statue!

Fantastic Four (1961) #58

Fantastic Four (1961) #58

  • Published: January 10, 1967
  • Added to Marvel Unlimited: November 13, 2007
  • Penciller: Jack Kirby
  • Cover Artist: Jack Kirby
What is Marvel Unlimited?

The souped up despot then made his way to the Southampton cottage the Richards’ had rented for some time away. Around this time, Lockjaw landed Johnny Storm and his pal Wyatt Wingfoot back in New York City as well. The trio had been fruitlessly searching for a way to find the Inhumans. Facing a new problem, Johnny saw the frozen Thing and then zoomed to the cottage to save his sister and brother-in-law from Doom’s attack.

Even though things got pretty hot during his fight with the Human Torch, Doom decided to simply leave the reunited Fantastic Four as they were. In his eyes, seeing Doom take over the world would prove a far worse punishment than actually killing them.

Doom’s arrogance would lead to his ultimate downfall. Richards appealed to the worlds’ governments to focus their efforts against Doom, but – after Ben gave him a walloping dose of motivation – he got to work developing a device that would weaken the villain.

Fantastic Four (1961) #59

Fantastic Four (1961) #59

  • Published: February 10, 1967
  • Added to Marvel Unlimited: November 13, 2007
  • Penciler: Jack Kirby
  • Cover Artist: Jack Kirby
What is Marvel Unlimited?

With time running out before Doom fully took over the planet and then moved on to the stars, the Fantastic Four jumped into action against the madman. Torch did his level best to fry the bad guy to no avail. Then Thing jumped into the ring to fight the foe for a second time. That gave Mr. Fantastic enough time to unleash the Anti-Cosmic Flying Wing.

The doohickey did the job of zapping and angering Doom while absorbing some of his power. However, the real reason for its presence came as it flew up into space where the bad doctor soon lost his power! As Richards explained, when Galactus stranded the Silver Surfer on Earth, that included his Cosmic Energy. When Doom passed a certain point, he lost the power! With that, Doom returned to his usual level of power and the board made its way back to the Surfer.

Fantastic Four (1961) #60

Fantastic Four (1961) #60

  • Published: March 10, 1967
  • Added to Marvel Unlimited: November 13, 2007
  • Penciller: Jack Kirby
  • Cover Artist: Jack Kirby
What is Marvel Unlimited?

It didn’t quite play into this particular story all that much, but Stan and Jack also finally released the Inhumans from their captivity. After Black Bolt told the citizens to hide underground tunnels, he unleashed the power of his voice to destroy the walls, and much of the city in the process. The Council of Elders then informed the Royal Family – that’s Black Bolt, Medusa, Gorgon, Crystal, Triton and Karnak – to return to the human world. Never let it be said that Lee and Kirby didn’t pack as much action and intrigue as possible into these big anniversary stories!

Stay tuned to Marvel.com for more on Jack Kirby’s legacy and join the conversation on all of our social channels with the hashtag #Kirby100.

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Nick Fury and S.H.I.E.L.D. meet up with the menace of A.I.M.!

1917 to 2017: 100 years of Kirby.

Join us to celebrate Jack “King” Kirby’s 100th birthday by learning about the characters and stories he created that changed comics forever. To commemorate Jack’s centennial, we’ve sat down with the modern-day creators he influenced—and the decades of work he gifted us all.

With 1966’s STRANGE TALES #148, the formula for Nick Fury’s segment of the book got a bit of shake up when Jack Kirby not only drew layouts for Don Heck to finish, but also scripted the story with regular writer Stan Lee reportedly on vacation! The resulting story, called “Death Before Dishonor,” began with a bang as Marvel’s top spy waded through fire while S.H.I.E.L.D. agents—wearing protective gear—fought the blaze with a series of chemicals.

Though the others wrote Fury off as dead from exposure to the elements, Dum Dum Dugan plowed through, tossed his Howling Commandos leader over his shoulder and made way for the Vita-Fluid-filled Restora-Tank. Distraught over the potential loss of his friend, Dugan responded with appropriate shock when Fury appeared behind him and revealed that a Life Model Decoy floated before them.

Fury and Jasper Sitwell then recounted how the fire started in the prisoner holding area. The head honcho wanted to question the captured members of A.I.M. in person, but instead used an L.M.D. as his eyes, ears, and mouth. This proved a good call as Advanced Idea Mechanics somehow used a remote detonator to blow their own people up!

The action then shifted to the public face of A.I.M., Count Bornag Royale, watching his enemies deal with the fire from a secret base. While he left to manipulate the Free Nations’ Justice Department to bring Fury in front of their Board of Inquiry, an A.I.M. contingent promised to grab an L.M.D. for research purposes. After checking out an x-ray projecting gun and hearing from Sitwell how easy breaking into his office proved, Nick sat down for another nail in the coffin: the official summons to appear before the Board on Inquiry.

Nick agreed to appear, and on the day of the supposedly secret meeting, A.I.M. took advantage of the timing to raid the S.H.I.E.L.D. L.M.D. facility. After listening to many bad-mouth him, Fury got fed up, smashed through a window of the Helicarrier, and used a belt parachute to land on the ground where Dugan awaited his arrival.

In the next issue—which featured a script by Denny O’Neil along with Kirby layouts and Ogden Whitney finishes—Fury and his soldiers make an epic move to save their facility while also putting a huge dent in A.I.M.’s operation!

Stay tuned to Marvel.com for more throughout Kirby Month and beyond! And join the conversation on all of our social channels with the hashtag #Kirby100.

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Captain America stands in the way of a massive jailbreak!

1917 to 2017: 100 years of Kirby.

Join us to celebrate Jack “King” Kirby’s 100th birthday by learning about the characters and stories he created that changed comics forever. To commemorate Jack’s centennial, we’ve sat down with the modern-day creators he influenced—and the decades of work he gifted us all.

Upon thawing out in the modern era, Captain America found himself duped a few times by people who took advantage of his optimistic nature. In TALES OF SUSPENSE #62, Stan Lee and Jack Kirby set our hero up to give a demonstration of breakout prevention maneuvers in 1965. However, instead of performing his fantastic physical feats for the warden, the Sentinel of Liberty unwittingly did so for an escaped con named Deacon who led an outbreak!

Deacon ordered the prisoners to jump Captain America, overpower him, and throw him into a cell with acting Superintendent Carlson. While both behind bars, Carlson explained that Deacon sparked the revolt, but they had no way of actually getting beyond the main gate. Having swiped Cap’s mighty shield, the criminal and company figured they could use the marvelous weapon to open up the door to the prison, but found themselves stymied. See, the mastermind knew that Iron Man had built magnetic capabilities in the shield and that the gate worked with magnetism, but could not figure out how.

Tales of Suspense (1959) #62

Tales of Suspense (1959) #62

  • Published: February 10, 1965
  • Added to Marvel Unlimited: November 13, 2007
  • Cover Artist: Jack Kirby
What is Marvel Unlimited?

And he didn’t have enough time, either, as an escaped Star-Spangled Avenger leapt into battle, taking on an army of armed prisoners desperate for a way out. Deacon tried making a break for it with Cap’s weapon in hand, though that also proved short lived as our hero slung a gun to trip the villain up so he could regain his rightful property. Before tossing his shield at the assembled bad guys, Steve Rogers revealed that they’d been wrong from the get-go! Though Iron Man had built magnetic implements for both the shield and Cap’s glove, he ditched the add-ons because “They ruined my shield’s delicate balance!”

Even without his famous weapon, Cap handled himself perfectly. A thug named Thumper tried socking him, but Rogers met that attempted blow with his own fist, illicitng a “Boang!” sound from the concussion. With the main action over—at least on his end—Captain America handily dispatched with the rest of the criminals and took a sneaking Deacon out by literally backing into him. From there, the guards burst in to regain control of the punch-drunk would-be breakout artists. Carlson then revealed that the main gate would not have opened because of magnets, but instead with a kind of magic phrase: “Captain America”!

Stay tuned to Marvel.com for more throughout Kirby Month and beyond! And join the conversation on all of our social channels with the hashtag #Kirby100.

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Thor gets caught in a war between Ego and the Devourer of Worlds!

1917 to 2017: 100 years of Kirby.

Join us to celebrate Jack “King” Kirby’s 100th birthday by learning about the characters and stories he created that changed comics forever. To commemorate Jack’s centennial, we’ve sat down with the modern-day creators he influenced—and the decades of work he gifted us all.

Ever since the dawn of comic books, readers have spent hours, days even, discussing what it would be like if their favorite characters met and what would happen in the ensuing fight. Fans themselves, Stan Lee and Jack Kirby actually got to make those dreams a reality as they continued building the Marvel Universe throughout the 60s. In THOR #160161, two incredible powers came into conflict for the first time: The God of Thunder and Galactus.

The issue from 1969 began with Tana Nile landing on Earth in hopes of drawing Thor out and requesting he return to Rigel with her to stop an unnamed, but grave menace, to which he agreed. Meanwhile, in Asgard, Odin interviewed The Recorder as Sif burst into the throne seeking leave to travel alongside her beloved Thor. Odin denied her, but did not stop the Rigellian robot from returning home.

Back on Nile’s ship, Thor’s journey came under siege as a lone but incredibly powerful Taurian crashed through the hull, demanding the crew cede control of the vessel. Upon losing the fight, the alien asked for mercy and explained that he’d lost his mind, just for a moment, because of the destruction Galactus wrought on his planet. Between that and seeing the results of the Devourer of Worlds’ most recent meal outside the ship, The Odinson vowed to punish The Planet Eater.

Thor (1966) #160

Thor (1966) #160

  • Published: January 10, 1969
  • Added to Marvel Unlimited: May 21, 2009
  • Penciller: Jack Kirby
  • Cover Artist: Jack Kirby
What is Marvel Unlimited?

While Recorder and Thor reunited on Rigel and left to find Galactus, the cosmic entity had come upon an unforeseen enemy in the form of Ego, the Living Planet! Their battle of might and mayhem proved strong enough to destroy the craft carrying Thor and his ally, leaving them seemingly stranded until the Wanderers swooped in to save the day. This group of survivors from the first planet Galactus consumed made it their mission to see their tormentor sated forever, one way or another.

As our heroes healed from the frigid vacuum of space on the Wanderers’ ship, Kirby treated us to a must-see confrontation between Ego and Galactus. In addition to the huge, bold traditional art “The King” created with apparent ease, we also got to see another of those amazing collages he dreamed up. Wishing to end the madness, Thor thrust mighty Mjolnir into the fray. Flying true, the mystic mallet found its target, smashing into Galactus and reminding the gargantuan what physical pain felt like. The Thunder God then took the fight directly to his foe, walloping him in the head with his trusted weapon.

Though The Recorder and the Wanderers all assumed that they’d been soundly defeated, Thor mounted Mjolnir to a device built on Ego to turn it into a kind of cosmic cannon. Calling upon the strength and power of Odin, his prodigal unleashed enough power to severely damage Galactus, sending him away to heal and continue his never-ending mission of sating his hunger. With their shared enemy defeated, Ego and the Wanderers became allies for a time as the living planet created a lush living place for the group on his surface and offered it as their home and sanctuary.

Stay tuned to Marvel.com for more throughout Kirby Month and beyond! And join the conversation on all of our social channels with the hashtag #Kirby100.

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Nick Fury and the Howling Commandos enter a new theater of war!

1917 to 2017: 100 years of Kirby.

Join us to celebrate Jack “King” Kirby’s 100th birthday by learning about the characters and stories he created that changed comics forever. To commemorate Jack’s centennial, we’ve sat down with the modern-day creators he influenced—and the decades of work he gifted us all.

Never ones to take it easy on their characters, Stan Lee and Jack Kirby gave the stars of SGT. FURY AND HIS HOWLING COMMANDOS a whole new challenge in the book’s sixth outing. The 1964 issue began with a distracted Fury running into a Nazi alarm wire while riding a bicycle because his Jeep broke down. Looking to meet his lady for a date, Nick put a little extra mustard into the fight with a trio of wannabe saboteurs. After dropping them off in the clink he met up with Lady Pamela Hawley and took in a picture that showcased how the Nazi  Rommel continued to run the table in North Africa.

Not long after Captain “Happy Sam” Sawyer informed Fury that he and the Howlers would take on The Desert Fox directly. Unfortunately, during a training exercise, Dino Manelli got banged up and had to stay behind which meant the unproven George Stonewell, would fill out the Howling Commandos. The newcomer immediately started raising eyebrows, though, as he had very clear problems with the Italian, Jewish, and African-American members of his squad. Nick called him on it, quickly saying, “You’re a genuine, 14-carat, dyed-in-the-wool, low-down bigot!” The commanding officer would have 86ed the new recruit, but they all rolled out for their mission the next day.

The action then cut directly to Tobruk, Libya where the Howlers found themselves just behind one of Rommel’s platoons. At first Stonewell seemed like he could put his prejudice aside to fight a common enemy, but once he and Gabe Jones approached a radio tent, his racism took over and a fight broke out between fellow soldiers. Fury broke it up, grabbed one of the surviving Nazis and used him as a guide.

During a brief respite, the Nazi noted to Stonewell how they shared similar views on the subject of non-whites. The U.S. commando said he had no use for Nazis just as a batch of Axis bombers flew in to attack. Thanks to some quick thinking by their sergeant, the Commandos avoided a potentially explosive situation and lived to wander the desert until coming upon a local tribe who offered to help overthrow the invasive Nazis.

Upon arriving at Rommel’s base, the sheer size of the Desert Fox’s operation, which included a whole fleet of tanks, struck the Howlers dumbfounded. Fury quickly devised a plan that required Stonewell to work alongside Izzy Cohen to his bigoted chagrin. Unable to control his baser nature, Stonewell not only planned to disobey Fury’s direct order, but also got into a scrap with Izzy that brought in all kinds of unwanted attention from their targets.

The pair got along well enough to defend each other, but Stonewell wound up taking some shrapnel, which meant that Cohen had to carry him out of the battlefield. With the larger mission scrapped, the Commandos tore out and got their newest member to a German doctor who helped without provocation, noting that he served the Nazis against his will. This man proceeded to facilitate a blood transfusion between the racist soldier and Gabe Jones to save Stonewell’s life. Later, the Allied forces crashed through Rommel’s outer defenses and got to Fury. They let him know that The Desert Fox secretly worked to assassinate Hitler, so they wanted to keep him alive in hopes that he and his co-conspirators would succeed in their mission.

Back in their British home base, the Howlers saw Stonewell off. Though he said nothing, he did leave a forwarding address to none other than Izzy and Gabe! Fury then closed the issue out with a lesson that we can all still learn from: “The seeds of prejudice, which takes a lifetime to grow, can’t be stamped out overnight—but if we keep trying—keep fighting—perhaps a day will come when ‘love they brother’ will be more than just an expression we hear in church!”

Stay tuned to Marvel.com for more throughout Kirby Month and beyond! And join the conversation on all of our social channels with the hashtag #Kirby100.

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Can Black Panther stop his mutated brother from destroying the planet?

1917 to 2017: 100 years of Kirby.

Join us to celebrate Jack “King” Kirby’s 100th birthday by learning about the characters and stories he created that changed comics forever. To commemorate Jack’s centennial, we’ve sat down with the modern-day creators he influenced—and the decades of work he gifted us all.

Family remained an important factor in Jack Kirby’s work throughout his entire career. He took on as much work as possible as the provider of his own clan and also wove that responsibility into many of his comics. BLACK PANTHER #810 from 1978 focused on these ideas as well when T’Challa dealt with problems while his own blood responded to a related threat back in Wakanda.

The first installment began with a masked man facing off against The Black Panther in Wakanda during the combat ritual which allows for any challengers to try and defeat the country’s champion for supremacy. To our surprise, the Panther fell and the hooded combatant turned out to be none other than T’Challa! We then cut to our hero himself flying a chopper back to his homeland and realize we’ve been feasting our eyes on a flashback. We’d seen something like this in AVENGERS #87, but not drawn by “The King”! His return home delayed once more upon seeing two people floating below him in a life raft.

Meanwhile, in Wakanda, the mutated Jakarra—T’Challa’s half-brother—continued his rampage throughout the nation after exposing himself to too much Vibranium. Driven mad, he decided to wage a war against his own people! Back in the copter, the men the Panther saved turned out to be less than reputable. In fact, the mobsters put a gun to the king’s head and demanded he fly them to Corsica. Instead, the savvy jungle king lurched the helicopter so that they all crashed. The mafia boss’ henchman perished, but Scarpa survived, leaving T’Challa questioning what he should do as he carried his unconscious attacker through the desert.

Black Panther (1977) #8

Black Panther (1977) #8

  • Published: March 10, 1978
  • Added to Marvel Unlimited: November 13, 2007
  • Writer: Jack Kirby
  • Penciller: Jack Kirby
What is Marvel Unlimited?

At the same time, in Wakanda, N’Gassi spoke to a quartet of T’Challa’s extended family members who had been called on to serve in the Panther’s stead during his absence. The group included race car driver Khanata, businessman Ishanta, Zuni, and genius youth Joshua Itobo. Though even they didn’t know if they stood up to the task of stopping their rampaging cousin, the foursome soon found themselves tested as Jakarra burst into their meeting. Between their quick-thinking and brave actions, T’Challa’s relatives chased the threat away, and suddenly felt a newfound desire to fight for their nation.

The rechristened “Black Musketeers” donned Black Panther-esque costumes to face off against Jakarra. Over in the desert, the actual Black Panther could not figure out why he suddenly came across robots and aliens, only later realizing he’d wandered onto the filming location of a sci-fi motion picture! After an incredibly long journey, T’Challa finally made his way back to Wakanda and just in time as Jakarra threatened to destroy the entire planet by taking his ever-changing form to the Great Vibranium Mound. Though his brethren did their best to stop the imminent danger, it took the Panther leaping into action to actually stop his brother, destroying him in the process.

Stay tuned to Marvel.com for more throughout Kirby Month and beyond! And join the conversation on all of our social channels with the hashtag #Kirby100.

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A Fantastic family vacation turns into a wet and wild adventure!

1917 to 2017: 100 years of Kirby.

Join us to celebrate Jack “King” Kirby’s 100th birthday by learning about the characters and stories he created that changed comics forever. To commemorate Jack’s centennial, we’ve sat down with the modern-day creators he influenced—and the decades of work he gifted us all.

In their time working together, Stan Lee and Jack Kirby conveyed many lessons to their readers, but one of the primaries included “things aren’t always what they seem.” The duo worked that theme in 1970’s FANTASTIC FOUR #97 on a variety of levels.

First and foremost, what seemed like a simple vacation for the First Family of Marvel turned into a monster hunt as Reed drove Ben and Johnny around in a borrowed Air-Sea Cruiser in an effort to find out what caused a series of sunken ships in Lost Lagoon. Seeing a humanoid shape in the water, the erstwhile Mister Fantastic thought they figured out part of the problem, but an enormous whale interrupted their search. Fed up, The Human Torch flew back to the nearby beach where Sue actually enjoyed their vacation with young Franklin.

As the teammates met up to try and just enjoy themselves, the action cut away to an undersea cave where the creature revealed itself as a green water-breather who could use some kind of agent to transform himself to look more human. He then swam up to the surface world where he worked a dolphin show at an oceanarium. The fish-man recognized Reed, Johnny and Ben from earlier that day and wondered if they did the same with him as he performed his act. Still driven to figure out the problem at hand, Richards asked the swimmer to help guide them underwater to find the party responsible for the downed ships.

Fantastic Four (1961) #97

Fantastic Four (1961) #97

  • Published: April 10, 1970
  • Added to Marvel Unlimited: November 13, 2007
  • Penciller: Jack Kirby
  • Cover Artist: Jack Kirby
What is Marvel Unlimited?

They seemed to work well together—even though the newcomer didn’t actually speak—until the would-be guide punched his way through the ship’s hull and swam off. The Thing managed to get his friends into another underwater cavern filled with air where they came face to face with their transformed foe for the first time! Though the creature proved strong enough to take Ben on in a fistfight, he made a break for it as soon as the Torch shot off some of his own brand of fireworks.

Moving further into the cavern, our heroes discovered the truth of the matter as they came upon the creature loading water balls onto some kind of spaceship! Reed explained that the alien must have landed on Earth and needed to stock up on H20, taking out any nearby ships just to keep him and his partner safe. Having fulfilled its immediate mission, the extraterrestrial motioned for the adventurers to back away as he entered the ship and blasted off for home! With that, the Fantastic Four could get back to their relaxation time and enjoy some fun in the sun.

Stay tuned to Marvel.com for more throughout Kirby Month and beyond! And join the conversation on all of our social channels with the hashtag #Kirby100.

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The King keeps us on the edge of our seats with scintillating sci-fi!

1917 to 2017: 100 years of Kirby.

Join us to celebrate Jack “King” Kirby’s 100th birthday by learning about the characters and stories he created that changed comics forever. To commemorate Jack’s centennial, we’ve sat down with the modern-day creators he influenced—and the decades of work he gifted us all.

These days, comic book titles have a tendency to start, stop, relaunch, and carry on under various titles. Back in the 50s and 60s, though, a book would move on with the times, even completely changing its format along the way, but maintain the same name. That’s what happened with TALES OF SUSPENSE, a comic that Jack Kirby had a hand in for most of it’s long run from 1959 to 1968. In that time it morphed from a sci-fi anthology to a monster-palooza and on to a full-on super hero starrer!

Kirby’s first tale in issue #2, called “Invasion From Space!,” began with a series of enormous ships suddenly appearing in the skies over Earth, drawing many eyes and questions from the people below. As citizens understandably panicked, the governments of the world decided to work together to blow this menace out of the sky even though one scientist countered, saying they had no reason to believe the visitors hostile.

After a massive joint attack on the crafts did nothing, the leaders decided to go the other way and destroy all of their major weapons in an effort to seem amenable to their potential invaders. When the ships flew off, the governments all decided to not restock their weapons and pledged to be more peaceful. But what of the dissenting scientist? As it turned out, he created the invasion as a hoax with his special dimensional projector and a series of slides magnified thousands of times over. To him, the ends of lasting world peace justified the means, which caused a panic.

Tales of Suspense (1959) #2

Tales of Suspense (1959) #2

  • Published: March 01, 1959
  • Added to Marvel Unlimited: November 13, 2007
  • Cover Artist: Steve Ditko
What is Marvel Unlimited?

Stories like these popped up often in this era after World War II, as many wondered if a threat like the Axis powers could rise again and what it would actually take for the world to remain peaceful. Kirby and other legendary comics creators like Steve Ditko, Stan Lee, Russ Heath Jr., Joe Sinnott, and others joined in on the sci-fi tales with a message and others for just plain fun!

These yarns also introduced a legion of giant monsters, aliens, and robots from the mind of Kirby and the gang, many of whom returned in MONSTERS UNLEASHED this past year. With the likes of Monstro, Sporr, Gor-Kil, Goom, Googam, and The Thing That Crawled At Night, these issues featured plenty of creatures to menace humanity with.

With 1963’s TALES OF SUSPENSE #39 the title changed forever as it introduced Iron Man who would go on to feature in the series for the rest of the run. While Ditko drew the Lee-penned story introducing ol’ Shell Head, Kirby gave the world their first look at the character on the cover. The following year, SUSPENSE shifted from an anthology to a split book starring Iron Man and newly returned Golden Age hero Captain America. Kirby returned to drawing the monthly adventures of the patrotic character he co-created with issue #59.

Stay tuned to Marvel.com for more throughout Kirby Month and beyond! And join the conversation on all of our social channels with the hashtag #Kirby100.

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The Human Torch steps up against an entire realm of invading evil!

1917 to 2017: 100 years of Kirby.

Join us to celebrate Jack “King” Kirby’s 100th birthday by learning about the characters and stories he created that changed comics forever. To commemorate Jack’s centennial, we’ve sat down with the modern-day creators he influenced—and the decades of work he gifted us all.

Many people think of Johnny Storm—aka The Human Torch—as the young, impetuous member of the Fantastic Four who would rather work on hot rods than take things too seriously. But, did you know that, in STRANGE TALES #103 by Stan Lee and Jack Kirby, he stopped an invasion from another dimension all by himself?

Upon arriving at school, Johnny overheard some kids talking about how a series of houses built by a man named Bentley kept sinking into the supposedly reinforced swamp land they’d been built upon. All of this mystified Bentley and his crew who had taken precautions to solidify the base of these domiciles safely. An old man appeared out of nowhere to inform them that the Swamp Demons had decided to get even with the builders for invading their home.

This warranted the attention of the Fantastic Four, though Mr. Fantastic told Johnny that he’d have to investigate this one solo. Upon arriving on site, Torch burned his way under the marsh and saw that the land looked solid enough. Storm stuck around the swamp until dark when he spied a trio skulking his way. He recognized the old man, but not his two alien-looking companions. Right before his eyes, the newcomers used an electro-gamma ray gun to disrupt the soil and sink another house!

Strange Tales (1951) #103

Strange Tales (1951) #103

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The duo vanished right before our hero’s eyes, so he jumped out to confront the elderly fellow who then pulled off a mask to reveal himself as one of the aliens as well! After a blast of anti-matter electrons shorted out his powers, Johnny found himself transported to the invaders’ home in the 5th Dimension! There, Storm met their ruler and warlord Zemu, who revealed that they planned to invade Earth and needed to keep the swamp clear of humans so they wouldn’t stumble upon the portal entrance. They then chained the Torch up in a water tank to keep him from flaming on.

Johnny would have been stuck there too had it not been for a woman named Valeria who hypnotized the guard and freed the do-gooder. Once safe, she and her people revealed themselves as Zemu’s opposition. Torch quickly signed on to fight alongside them against their common enemy and lived up to his fiery name by burning through as many of Zemu’s weapons as possible. The warlord upped his own game by sending out his fireproof giant tank corps. Johnny whipped up a super tornado to take out these new war machines and then soared into the sky with a message of rebellion against Zemu for the denizens of this dimension.

It didn’t take long for them to respond in kind and finally topple the tyranny of Zemu. With this adventure wrapped up, Johnny returned to his own dimension where he did what all conquering heroes do: head back to high school!

Stay tuned to Marvel.com for more throughout Kirby Month and beyond! And join the conversation on all of our social channels with the hashtag #Kirby100.

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