Review: Marvel Team-Up #18

Marvel Team-Up #18 cover
Cover by Gil Kane

Marvel Team-Up #18
Published and © by Marvel, February 1974

Title: “Where Bursts the Bomb!”

Synopsis: The Human Torch and Hulk team to stop a revenge plot that involves bringing back Blastaar.

Writer: Len Wein
Penciler: Gil Kane
Inker: Frank Giacoia and Mike Esposito

Review: Your friendly neighborhood Spider-Man gets bumped from Marvel Team-Up for the first time for a done-in-one story featuring the Human Torch and the incredible Hulk. Unfortunately, it’s not a very good story, as coincidence and dues ex machina plot devices – Gamma radiation! Adamantium! – undermine any suspension of disbelief. Such problems plagued many Bronze Age comics, of course, but it’s so obvious here that writer Len Wein actually calls attention to it in a “Time Out for an Explanation Dept.” Still, it’s not an bad issue, thanks in large part to the always-dynamic pencil work of artist Gil Kane.

Grade: B

Cool factor: A Marvel Team-Up without Spider-Man!
Not-so-cool factor: A Marvel Team-Up without Spider-Man!

Notable:  One of only 11 issues of Marvel Team-Up – #18, #23, #26, #29, #32, #35, #97, #104-105, #137 and Annual #3 – not to star Spider-Man.
Collector’s note: According to MyComicShop.com, there is a Mark Jewelers variant of this issue.

Character quotable: “Out of Hulk’s way, puny humans – or Hulk will land on your heads.” – Hulk, who must own a trademark on the word “puny”

Editor’s note: This review was originally published by Comics Bronze Age on June 9, 2009.

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