Friday, January 27, 2017

A Month of... Celebrities in Comics, Day 27: Nick feels like he's fixin' to die

Yesterday we saw what happened when the Howling Commandos were in the audience for the Big Show of '44, which featured real-life celebrities that Nick Fury liked, goldarnit it, and not these modern kids with their underpants showing and their cone bras and their dancing with cartoon cats. Why, back in Nick's day when he was young and white, he and his gal pals jitterbugged to the smooth rhythms of Glenn Miller and Gene Autry and Spike Jones and the Fabulous Stains and Figrin D'an and the Modal Nodes! That was just the way music was, and Nick liked it that way!

Which is why Nick Fury, Agent of S.H.I.E.L.D.* would rather be dead than at a concert for today's Celebs in Comics, Country Joe McDonald and the Fish!

Panels from Nick Fury, Agent of SHIELD (1968 series) #15 (November 1969); co-plot by Gary Friedrich, Herb Trimpe, and Dick Ayers; script by Gary Friedrich; pencils by Herb Trimpe and Dick Ayers; inks by Sam Grainger; letters by Jean Izzo

Yes indeed, those verses about the FF and Doc Strangely are not an invention of the Mighty Marvel Bullpen, but the actual song lyrics from C.J.&F.'s classic song "Superbird!" (There are lyrics referencing Superman and Kryptonite too, but I don't see any sign of the band appearing in that month's comics from Distinguished Competition.

Why, it's such a short song even Nick should be able to stand it, but no! As soon as the band rocks into the freaky riffs of "Not So Sweet Martha Lorraine" Nick's head totally expands, man! I mean, like literally! He's completely blown away by this song!

Is Nick dead, Nick's generic date? Why, he's not only rockapelic dead, he's also psychedelic dead.

Is Nick really dead? Who knows? Who cares? Because this is the last original issue of his comic book and we don't get to find out! In fact, the next three issues are completely filled with reprints. Way to duck the press asking the probing questions about Nick Fury's death, Dum-Dum Dugan!

And nobody ever saw Nick Fury, ever again.

...until two months later.

Panels from Avengers #72 (January 1970), script by Roy Thomas, pencils by Sal Buscema, inks and colors (?) by Sam Grainger, letters by Sam Rosen

Turns out Nick had gone undercover as his evil identical twin brother to infiltrate Z.O.D.I.A.C.**, leaving a Life Model Decoy in his place mid-concert, presumably when he left Laura and went to get a hot dog or warn somebody about the brown acid. An L.M.D. instead of a dead body in a Marvel Universe story?!? By golly, we never saw that twist coming!

* Some How I'd Envy Literal Death
** Oh sorry, that shouldn't have been acronymed. Those letters don't actually spell anything.

1 comment:

Blam said...

Why did the Mad Thinker step in for Country Joe (and when did SHIELD know about it)?