Wednesday, 25 February 2015

My Review of Golden Age Sub-Mariner Volume 1

As part of my Panels read harder comic book challenge, the one category I really thought that I'd struggle actually finding anything to read was the Golden Age (30's to early 50's). However, while deciding on my options I went to the library with my husband and he spotted Marvel Masterworks: Sub-Mariner - Volume 1 (Marvel Masterworks #47) by Bill Everett, Ray Gill, Stan Lee and Mickey Spillane. This was originally written and published individually in 1941, so it fell perfectly right in the middle of that time frame.

Much as I wanted to love this, as this time period was when comics really got started, I really struggled with the stories and the way the text was written. I felt that each story with Namor was pretty interchangeable as each issue followed the same arc of finding the Nazis did something bad and then punishing them for it, usually by punching them in the face. (action was certainly very different in the 40's)

The writing itself felt very formal and stilted, however that could be due to how people spoke in the 40's, but its not all that long ago in the whole scheme of things.

I believe the stories were run as part of a propaganda plan to try and get America involved in the war (I seem to think we saw Captain America fighting in the war too before America officially joined). This does give at least the reason why the Nazis are in every story, however how they are shoehorned in or blamed in some of the stories is quite unbelievable.

Overall with the Namor stories, I got bored after the second one, so it was quite a slog to get through the rest of the book.

Saying all that, there were stories at the end of each issue about The Angel. These stories and this character I absolutely loved and looked forward to getting to his pages. I liked his character, I thought the stories were good and slightly cheeky. I also loved the idea that when he left a scene, he left a shadow of an angel on whatever surface there happened to be (wall, gravestone etc)

I gave the book 3 stars, mainly because of The Angel, however had this been a more modern book, I would have given less.

I started this book on the 14th of February 2015 and I finished it on the 20th of February 2015
I gave this book 3 stars on Goodreads

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