Friday, January 06, 2006
THE OFFICIAL HANDBOOK OF THE MARVEL UNIVERSE, DELUXE EDITION #8 Marvel Comics, 1986
My copy of The Official Handbook of the Marvel Universe, Deluxe Edition #8 is beat to hell. I’m not complaining; a lot of my comics are kind of trashed. Let me share a little secret with you about my comic book collection, which is bigger than some and smaller than others:
None of my comics are in bags.
Sure, I have a few dozen cherished comics that are bagged up; for some reason all of Grant Morrison’s JLA comics are in bags and are therefore in great condition. But the rest of them are just sitting naked in my long boxes, vulnerable to the ravages of time, ultraviolet radiation, and my cat. Believe me, I have tried bagging them in the past, but I have so many frickin’ comics now that the prospect seems daunting. My laziness is going to be the death of my comics collection some day.
You know what? I don’t really care. I’m one of those strange people that buys comics to read. Bags just get in the way.
Anyway, if the condition of a given comic in my collection is an indicator of how much I enjoyed it, then OHMU(DE) #8 and I should move to Oregon and get legally married, because that comic is fucked up. You should see my copy of Daredevil #181, it looks like it’s spent a year on the bottom of an elephant cage. It would make you cry how badly I’ve taken care of it.
This beat-up edition of OHMU(DE) has mandroids, Man-Thing, The Mandarin, and a roster of The Masters of Evil drawn by Kevin Maguire. Is it any wonder why I love it so much?
Plus! Ripped from the pages of West Coast Avengers, one of the Greatest Villains Ever (he said sarcastically): Master Pandemonium!
I had started to describe Master P, the man with the demon arms, but he is so lame that he is worthy of a post all his own. For now, be satisfied with just gazing on his OHMU(DE) entry and contemplating the brilliance that is Master Pandemonium.
In addition to the Mandarin character entry, OHMU(DE) #8 has this great layout of The Mandarin’s rings of power. For those who do not know and love The Mandarin like I do, let me explain: The Mandarin wears ten strange rings of alien origin, each with its own super-power. Check them out:
The Marvel Universe version of Merlin is included in this issue as well, and boy does he look pissed:
Maybe it’s the cone hat. I’d be in a foul mood if I had to wear that, too. Merlin’s probably just angry because people mix him up with Gandalf, even though he precedes Gandalf by a couple hundred years. I can just imagine some punk kid coming up to Merlin and yelling: “Hey, Gandalf! Yooou shall not pass!!!” I’ll bet he gets that all the time, and if people don’t think he’s Gandalf they think he’s Santa. No wonder he’s so agro. There’s only so much disrespect a wizard can take before he turns somebody into a frickin’ toad.