Review: Marvel Fanfare #15

Marvel Fanfare #15
Cover by Barry Windsor-Smith

Marvel Fanfare #15
Published and © by Marvel, July 1984

Title: “That Night …”
Synopsis: The Thing awakes to an elaborate practical joke staged by the Human Torch. Will payback work out?

Writer: Barry Windsor-Smith
Penciler: Windsor-Smith
Inker: Windsor-Smith

Review: Barry Windsor-Smith has been a bit of a comet throughout his comic-book career, disappearing for awhile, then returning to shine for lucky fans. This short tale is a masterpiece of both story and art, with lovely characterization, amazing visual storytelling and an emotional heart. Confident work from a master.


Title: “Crimson Ash”
Synopsis: When an arson wave hits New York City, Daredevil suspects another orphan from his Hell’s Kitchen past.

Writer: Roger McKenzie
Penciler: Jack Sparling
Inker: Ian Akin and Brian Garvey

Review: This throwaway tale adds new Daredevil backstory in hopes on an emotional reaction. The art is pedestrian. Meh.

Grade (for the entire issue): B+

Second opinion: “Barry Windsor-Smith has written and drawn the most delightful Thing story since the glory days of Lee and Kirby.” – R.A. Jones, Amazing Heroes #50, July 1, 1984 …“Clever and amusing. … Recommended.” – The Slings & Arrows Comic Guide (second edition), 2003

Cool factor: That Barry Windsor-Smith is really good. (Also, great use of little details, including a Cerebus the Aardvark cameo.)
Not-so-cool factor: The weak backup story cost this issue the rare A+.

Marvel Fanfare #15 back cover
Back cover by Ian Akin and Brian Garvey

Notable: Inclues a one-page “Editori-Al” and a one-page house ad written and illustrated by editor Al Milgrom. … The back cover is a Daredevil pinup by Ian Akin and Brian Garvey.

Character quotable:Nyah nyah!!” – Al Milgrom, taunting complaining fans

Editor’s note: This review was written June 5, 2021.

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