Template:About Template:Infobox company

Marvel Publishing, Inc., commonly referred to as Marvel Comics, is an American company that publishes comic books and related media. Marvel Entertainment, Inc., a subsidiary of The Walt Disney Company, owns Marvel Publishing.[1]

The comic book arm of the company started in 1939 as Timely Publications, and by the early 1950s had generally become known as Atlas Comics. Marvel's modern incarnation dates from 1961, with the company later that year launching Fantastic Four and other superhero titles created by Stan Lee, Jack Kirby, Steve Ditko, and others.

Marvel counts among its characters such well-known properties as Spider-Man, Iron Man, the X-Men, the Hulk, the Fantastic Four, Thor and Captain America; antagonists such as Doctor Doom, the Green Goblin, Magneto, Galactus, and the Red Skull; and others. Most of Marvel's fictional characters operate in a single reality known as the Marvel Universe, with locales set in real-life cities such as New York, Los Angeles and Chicago.[2]

In 2009, The Walt Disney Company acquired Marvel Entertainment for $4.24 billion.


Timely PublicationsEdit

Main article: Timely Comics

Martin Goodman founded the company later known as Marvel Comics under the name Timely Publications in 1939,[3] publishing comic books under the imprint Timely Comics.[4] Goodman, a pulp magazine publisher who had started with a Western pulp in 1933, expanded into the emerging—and by then already highly popular—new medium of comic books. He began his new line from his existing company's offices at 330 West 42nd Street, New York City, New York. He officially held the titles of editor, managing editor, and business manager, with Abraham Goodman officially listed as publisher.[3]

Timely's first publication, Marvel Comics #1 (cover dated Oct. 1939), included the first appearance of Carl Burgos' android superhero the Human Torch, and the first generally available appearance of Bill Everett's anti-hero Namor the Sub-Mariner, among other features. The issue was a sales blockbuster[5] and the contents came from an outside packager, Funnies, Inc., but by the following year Timely had its own staff in place. With the second issue the series title changed to Marvel Mystery Comics.

The company's first true editor, writer-artist Joe Simon, teamed up with imminent industry-legend Jack Kirby to create one of the firstTemplate:Citation needed patriotically themed superheroes, Captain America, in Captain America Comics #1. (March 1941) It too proved a major sales hit, with sales of nearly one million.[5]

While no other Timely character would achieve the success of these "big three", some notable heroes—many of which continue to appear in modern-day retcon appearances and flashbacks—include the Whizzer, Miss America, the Destroyer, the original Vision, and the Angel. Timely also published one of humor cartoonist Basil Wolverton's best-known features, "Powerhouse Pepper",[6][7] as well as a line of children's funny-animal comics featuring popular characters like Super Rabbit and the duo Ziggy Pig and Silly Seal.

Goodman hired his wife's cousin,[8] Stanley Lieber, as a general office assistant in 1939.[9] When editor Simon left the company in late 1941,Template:Citation needed Goodman made Lieber—by then writing pseudonymously as "Stan Lee"Template:Citation needed—interim editor of the comics line, a position Lee kept for decadesTemplate:Citation needed except for three years during his military service in World War II. Lee wrote extensively for Timely, contributing to a number of different titles.

As the late 1940s went on, Timely branched out into new genres, notably romance, Western and crime.Template:Citation needed

Goodman's business strategy involved having his various magazines and comic books published by a number of companies all operating out of the same office and with the same staff.[4] One of these shell companies through which Timely Comics was published was named Marvel Comics by at least Marvel Mystery Comics #55 (May 1944). As well, some comics' covers, such as All Surprise Comics #12 (Winter 1946-47), were labeled "A Marvel Magazine" many years before Goodman would formally adopt the name in 1961.[10]

Atlas ComicsEdit

Main article: Atlas Comics (1950s)

The post-war American comic market saw superheroes falling out of fashion.Template:Citation needed Goodman's comic book line dropped them for the most part and expanded into a wider variety of genres than even Timely had published, featuring horror, Westerns, humor, funny animal, men's adventure-drama, crime, and war comics, and later adding jungle books, romance titles, espionage, and even medieval adventure, Bible stories and sports. Like other publishers,Template:Citation needed Goodman also courted female readers with mostly humorous comics about models and career women.Template:Citation needed

Goodman began using the globe logo of Atlas, a newsstand-distribution company he owned,Template:Citation needed on comics cover-dated November 1951.Template:Citation needed This united a line put out by the same publisher, staff, and freelancers through 59 shell companies, from Animirth Comics to Zenith Publications, under the umbrella name Atlas Comics.

Atlas, rather than innovate, took a proven route of following popular trends in television and movies—Westerns and war dramas prevailing for a time, drive-in movie monsters another time—and even other comic books, particularly the EC horror line.[11] Atlas also published a plethora of children's and teen humor titles, including Dan DeCarlo's Homer the Happy Ghost (à la Casper the Friendly Ghost) and Homer Hooper (à la Archie Andrews). Atlas unsuccessfully attempted to revive superheroes from late 1953 to mid-1954, with the Human Torch (art by Syd Shores and Dick Ayers, variously), the Sub-Mariner (drawn and most stories written by Bill Everett), and Captain America (writer Stan Lee, artist John Romita Sr.).



The first modern comic books under the Marvel Comics brand were the science-fiction anthology Journey into Mystery #69 and the teen-humor title Patsy Walker #95 (both cover dated June 1961), which each displayed an "MC" box on its cover.[12] Then, in the wake of DC Comics' success in reviving superheroes in the late 1950s and early 1960s, particularly with the Flash, Green Lantern, and other members of the team the Justice League of America, Marvel followed suit.[13] The introduction of modern Marvel's first superhero team, in The Fantastic Four #1, (Nov. 1961),[14] began establishing the company's reputation. From then until the end of 1969, Marvel published a total of 831 comic books with at least one new superhero story,[15] the majority of them written by editor-in-chief Stan Lee, in addition to a smattering of Western (such as Rawhide Kid), humor (such as Millie the Model), romance (such as Love Romances), and war comics like Sgt. Fury and his Howling Commandos.

Editor-writer Lee and freelance artist Jack Kirby's Fantastic Four, reminiscent of the non-superpowered adventuring quartet the Challengers of the Unknown that Kirby had created for DC in 1957, originated in a Cold War culture that led their creators to revise the superhero conventions of previous eras to better reflect the psychological spirit of their age.[16] Eschewing such comic book tropes as secret identities and even costumes at first, having a monster as one of the heroes, and having its characters bicker and complain in what was later called a "superheroes in the real world" approach, the series represented a change that proved to be a great success.[17] Marvel began publishing further superhero titles featuring such heroes and antiheroes as the Hulk, Spider-Man, Thor, Ant-Man, Iron Man, the X-Men, and Daredevil, and such memorable antagonists as Doctor Doom, Magneto, Galactus, the Green Goblin, and Doctor Octopus. Lee and Steve Ditko generated the most successful new series in The Amazing Spider-Man. Marvel even lampooned itself and other comics companies in a parody comic, Not Brand Echh (a play on Marvel's dubbing of other companies as "Brand Echh", à la the then-common phrase "Brand X").[18]

Marvel's comics had a reputation for focusing on characterization to a greater extent than most superhero comics before them.[19] This applied to The Amazing Spider-Man in particular. Its young hero suffered from self-doubt and mundane problems like any other teenager. Marvel often presents flawed superheroes, freaks, and misfits—unlike the perfect, handsome, athletic heroes found in previous traditional comic books. Some Marvel heroes looked like villains and monsters. In time, this non-traditional approach would revolutionize comic books. Writer Geoff Boucher in 2009 reflected that, "Superman and DC Comics instantly seemed like boring old Pat Boone; Marvel felt like The Beatles and the British Invasion. It was Kirby's artwork with its tension and psychedelia that made it perfect for the times—or was it Lee's bravado and melodrama, which was somehow insecure and brash at the same time?"[20]

Comics historian Peter Sanderson wrote that in the 1960s, Template:Blockquote


Lee, with his charming personality and relentless salesmanship of the company, became one of the best-known names in comics.Template:Citation needed His sense of humor and generally lighthearted manner became the "voice" that permeated the stories, the letters and news-pages, and the hyperbolic house ads of that era's Marvel Comics. He fostered a clubby fan-following with Lee's exaggerated depiction of the Bullpen (Lee's name for the staff) as one big, happy family. This included printed kudos to the artists, who eventually co-plotted the stories based on the busy Lee's rough synopses or even simple spoken concepts, in what became known as the Marvel Method, and contributed greatly to Marvel's product and success. Kirby in particular is generally credited for many of the cosmic ideas and characters of Fantastic Four and The Mighty Thor, such as the Watcher, the Silver Surfer and Ego the Living Planet, while Steve Ditko is recognized as the driving artistic force behind the moody atmosphere and street-level naturalism of The Amazing Spider-Man and the surreal atmosphere of the Strange Tales mystical feature "Doctor Strange". Lee, however, continues to receive credit for his well-honed skills at dialogue and sense of storytelling, for his keen hand at choosing and motivating artists and assembling creative teams, and for his uncanny ability to connect with the readers—not least through the nickname endearments he bestowed in the credits and the monthly "Bullpen Bulletins" and letters pages, giving readers humanizing hype about the likes of "Jolly Jack Kirby," "Jaunty Jim Steranko", "Rascally Roy Thomas", "Jazzy Johnny Romita", and others, right down to letterers "Swingin' Sammy Rosen" and "Adorable Artie Simek".

Lesser-known staffers during the company's growth in the 1960s (some of whom worked primarily for Marvel publisher Martin Goodman's umbrella magazine corporation) included circulation manager Johnny Hayes, subscriptions person Nancy Murphy, bookkeeper Doris Siegler, merchandising-person Charles "Chip" Goodman (son of publisher Martin), and Arthur Jeffrey, described in the December 1966 "Bullpen Bulletin" as "keeper of our MMMS [Merry Marvel Marching Society] files, guardian of our club coupons and defender of the faith".

In the fall of 1968, company founder Goodman sold Marvel Comics and his other publishing businesses to the Perfect Film and Chemical Corporation. It grouped these businesses in a subsidiary called Magazine Management Co. with Goodman remained as publisher.[21] In 1969 Marvel finally ended the distribution deal with DC which it had reached under duress during the Atlas years and which had constrained its growth by signing with Curtis Circulation Company.[22]


In 1971, the United States Department of Health, Education, and Welfare approached Marvel Comics editor-in-chief Stan Lee to do a comic book story about drug abuse. Lee agreed and wrote a three-part Spider-Man story portraying drug use as dangerous and unglamorous. However, the industry's self-censorship board, the Comics Code Authority, refused to approve the story because of the presence of narcotics, deeming the context of the story irrelevant. Lee, with Goodman's approval, published the story regardless in The Amazing Spider-Man #96-98 (May–July 1971), without the Comics Code seal. The market reacted well to the storyline, and the CCA subsequently revised the Code the same year.[23]

File:Howard The Duck -8.jpg

Goodman retired as publisher in 1972 and Lee succeeded him, stepping aside from running day-to-day operations at Marvel. A series of new editors-in-chief oversaw the company during another slow time for the industry. Once again, Marvel attempted to diversify, and with the updating of the Comics Code achieved moderate to strong success with titles themed to horror (The Tomb of Dracula), martial arts, (Shang-Chi: Master of Kung Fu), sword-and-sorcery (Conan the Barbarian, Red Sonja), satire (Howard the Duck) and science fiction (2001: A Space Odyssey, "Killraven" in Amazing Adventures, Star Trek, and, late in the decade, the long-running Star Wars series). Some of these were published in larger-format black and white magazines, that targeted mature readers, under its Curtis Magazines imprint. Marvel was able to capitalize on its successful superhero comics of the previous decade by acquiring a new newsstand distributor and greatly expanding its comics line. Marvel pulled ahead of rival DC Comics in 1972, during a time when the price and format of the standard newsstand comic were in flux. Goodman increased the price and size of Marvel's November 1971 cover-dated comics from 15 cents for 39 pages total to 25 cents for 52 pages. DC followed suit, but Marvel the following month dropped its comics to 20 cents for 36 pages, offering a lower-priced product with a higher distributor discount.[24]

In 1973, Perfect Film and Chemical Corporation changed its name to "Cadence Industries", which in turn renamed Magazine Management Co. as "Marvel Comics Group". Goodman, now completely disconnected from Marvel, set up a new company called Atlas/Seaboard Comics in 1974, reviving Marvel's old Atlas name, but this lasted only a year-and-a-half.[25]

In the mid-1970s a decline of the newsstand distribution network affected Marvel. Cult hits such as Howard the Duck fell victim to the distribution problems, with some titles reporting low sales when in fact the first specialty comic book stores resold them at a later date.Template:Citation needed But by the end of the decade, Marvel's fortunes were reviving, thanks to the rise of direct market distribution—selling through those same comics-specialty stores instead of newsstands.

Marvel held its own comic book convention, Marvelcon '75, in spring 1975, and promised a Marvelcon '76. At the 1975 event, Stan Lee used a Fantastic Four panel discussion to announce that Jack Kirby, the artist co-creator of most of Marvel's signature characters, was returning to Marvel after having left in 1970 to work for rival DC Comics.[26] In October 1976, Marvel, which already licensed reprints in different countries, including the UK, created a superhero specifically for the British market. Captain Britain debuted exclusively in the UK, and later appeared in American comics.[27]



In 1978, Jim Shooter became Marvel's editor-in-chief. Although a controversial personality, Shooter cured many of the procedural ills at Marvel, including repeatedly missed deadlines. The company enjoyed some of its best successes during Shooter's nine-year tenure as Editor-in-Chief, most notably Chris Claremont and John Byrne's run on the Uncanny X-Men and Frank Miller's run on Daredevil. Also under Shooter's editorial reign, Walt Simonson revamped The Mighty Thor and made it a bestseller again. Shooter brought Marvel into the rapidly evolving direct market,[29] institutionalized creator royalties, starting the Epic imprint for creator-owned material in 1982; introduced company-wide crossover story arcs with Contest of Champions and Secret Wars; and in 1986 launched a new, albeit ultimately unsuccessful line named New Universe, to commemorate the 25th anniversary of the Marvel Comics imprint. Star Comics, a younger-oriented line than the regular Marvel titles, was briefly successful for a time during this period.

Despite Marvel's successes in the early 1980s, however, it lost ground to rival DC in the latter half of the decade, as many former Marvel stars defected to their competitor. DC scored critical and sales victories[30] with titles and limited series like Watchmen, Batman: The Dark Knight Returns, Crisis on Infinite Earths, John Byrne's revamp of Superman, and Alan Moore's Swamp Thing.

In 1986, Marvel was sold to New World Entertainment, which within three years sold it to MacAndrews and Forbes, owned by Revlon executive Ronald Perelman.



Marvel earned a great deal of money and recognition during the comic book boom of the early 1990s, launching the successful 2099 line of comics set in the future (Spider-Man 2099, etc.) and the creatively daring though commercially unsuccessful Razorline imprint of superhero comics created by novelist and filmmaker Clive Barker. Yet by the middle of the decade, the industry had slumped, and in December 1996 Marvel filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection.[31]

Marvel suffered a major blow in early 1992, when seven of its most prized artists—Todd McFarlane (known for his work on Spider-Man), Jim Lee (X-Men), Rob Liefeld (X-Force), Marc Silvestri (Wolverine), Erik Larsen (The Amazing Spider-Man), Jim Valentino (Guardians of the Galaxy), and Whilce Portacio—left to form the successful company Image Comics.[32]


In late 1994, Marvel acquired the comic book distributor Heroes World Distribution to use as its own exclusive distributor.[33] As the industry's other major publishers made exclusive distribution deals with other companies, the ripple effect resulted in the survival of only one other major distributor in North America, Diamond Comic Distributors Inc.[34][35] In early 1997, when Marvel's Heroes World endeavor failed, Diamond also forged an exclusive deal with Marvel[36]—giving the company its own section of its comics catalog Previews.[37]

Creatively and commercially, the '90s were dominated by the use of gimmickry to boost sales, such as variant covers, cover enhancements, swimsuit issues. In 1991 Marvel began selling Marvel Universe Cards with trading card maker SkyBox International. These were collectible trading cards that featured the characters and events of the Marvel Universe.

Another common Marvel practice of this period was regular company-wide crossovers that threw the universe's continuity into disarray. In 1996, Marvel had almost all its titles participate in the "Onslaught Saga", a crossover that allowed Marvel to relaunch some of its flagship characters, such as the Avengers and the Fantastic Four, in the Heroes Reborn universe, in which Marvel defectors (and now Image Comics stars) Jim Lee and Rob Liefeld were given permission to revamp the properties from scratch. After an initial sales bump, sales quickly declined below expected levels, and Marvel discontinued the experiment after a one-year run; the characters soon returned to the Marvel Universe proper. In 1998, the company launched the imprint Marvel Knights, taking place within Marvel continuity; helmed by soon-to-become editor-in-chief Joe Quesada, it featured tough, gritty stories showcasing such characters as the Inhumans, Black Panther and Daredevil.

In 1991, Ronald Perelman, whose company MacAndrews and Forbes had purchased Marvel Comic's Parent corporation, Marvel Entertainment Group (MEG) in 1986, took the company public in a New York Stock Exchange stock-offering underwritten by Merrill Lynch and First Boston Corporation. Following the rapid rise of this popular stock, Perleman issued a series of junk bonds that he used to acquire other children's entertainment companies secured by MEG stock. In 1997, Toy Biz and MEG merged to end the bankruptcy forming a new corporation, Marvel Enterprises.[31] With his business partner Avi Arad, publisher Bill Jemas, and editor-in-chief Bob Harras, Perlmutter helped revitalize the comics line.[38]


With the new millennium, Marvel Comics escaped from bankruptcy and again began diversifying its offerings. In 2001, Marvel withdrew from the Comics Code Authority and established its own Marvel Rating System for comics. The first title from this era to not have the code was X-Force #119 (October 2001).

Marvel also created new imprints, such as MAX (a line intended for mature readers) and Marvel Age (developed for younger audiences). In addition, the company created an alternate universe imprint, Ultimate Marvel, that allowed the company to reboot their major titles by revising and updating its characters to introduce to a new generation. Template:As of, Marvel remains a key comics publisher, even as the industry has dwindled to a fraction of its peak size decades earlier.Template:Citation needed Some of its characters have been turned into successful film franchises, the highest-grossing being the X-Men movie series, starting in 2000, and the Spider-Man series, beginning in 2002.[39]

In a cross-promotion, the November 1, 2006, episode of the CBS soap opera The Guiding Light, titled "She's a Marvel", featured the character Harley Davidson Cooper (played by Beth Ehlers) as a superheroine named the Guiding Light.[40] The character's story continued in an eight-page backup feature, "A New Light", that appeared in several Marvel titles published November 1 and 8.[41] Also that year, Marvel created a wiki on its Web site.[42]

In late 2007 the company launched an online initiative, announcing Marvel Digital Comics Unlimited, a digital archive of over 2,500 back issues available for viewing, for a monthly or annual subscription fee.[43]

In 2009 Marvel Comics closed its Open Submissions Policy, in which the company had accepted unsolicited samples from aspiring comic book artists, saying the time-consuming review process had produced no suitably professional work.[44] The same year, the company commemorated its 70th anniversary, dating to its inception as Timely Comics, by issuing the one-shot Marvel Mystery Comics 70th Anniversary Special #1 and a variety of other special issues.[45][46]

On August 31, 2009, The Walt Disney Company announced a deal to acquire Marvel Entertainment for $4 billion, with Marvel shareholders to receive $30 and 0.745 Disney shares for each share of Marvel they own.[47]


The Marvel editor-in-chief oversees the largest-scale creative decisions taken within the company. The position evolved sporadically. In the earliest years, the company had a single editor overseeing the entire line. As the company grew, it became increasingly common for individual titles to be overseen separately. The concept of the "writer-editor" evolved, stemming from when Lee wrote and managed most of the line's output. Overseeing the line in the 1970s was a series of chief editors, though the titles were used intermittently. By the time Jim Shooter took the post in 1978, the position of editor-in-chief was clearly defined.

In 1994, Marvel briefly abolished the position, replacing Tom DeFalco with five "group editors", though each held the title "editor-in-chief" and had some editors underneath them. It reinstated the overall editor-in-chief position in 1995, installing Bob Harras. Joe Quesada became editor-in-chief in 2000 and held the position until 2011 when Axel Alonso took up the position.

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Located in New York City, Marvel has been successively headquartered in the McGraw-Hill Building,[3][48] where it originated as Timely Comics in 1939; in suite 1401 of the Empire State Building;[48] at 635 Madison Avenue (the actual location, though the comic books' indicia listed the parent publishing-company's address of 625 Madison Ave.);[48] 575 Madison Avenue;[48] 387 Park Avenue South;[48] 10 East 40th Street;[48] 417 Fifth Avenue;[48] and 135 W. 50th Street.[49]

Marvel characters in other mediaEdit

Marvel characters and stories have been adapted to many other media. Some of these adaptations were produced by Marvel Comics and its sister company, Marvel Studios, while others were produced by companies licensing Marvel material.

Television programsEdit

Main article: List of television series based on Marvel Comics

Many television series, both live-action and animated, have based their productions on Marvel Comics characters. These include multiple series for popular characters such as Spider-Man and the X-Men. Additionally, a handful of television movies based on Marvel Comics characters have been made.


Main article: List of films based on Marvel Comics

See: Marvel Studios

Theme parksEdit

Marvel has licensed its characters for theme-parks and attractions, including at the Universal Orlando Resort's Islands of Adventure, in Orlando, Florida, which includes rides based on their iconic characters and costumed performers.[50] Universal theme parks in California and Japan also have Marvel rides.[51] In early 2007 Marvel and developer the Al Ahli Group announced plans to build Marvel's first full theme park, in Dubai, United Arab Emirates, by 2011.[51]

Video gamesEdit

Main article: List of video games based on Marvel comics

Role-playing gamesEdit

TSR published the pen-and-paper role-playing game Marvel Super Heroes in 1984. TSR then released the Marvel Super Heroes Adventure Game in 1998. In 2003 Marvel Comics published their own role-playing game, the Marvel Universe Roleplaying Game. This incarnation was discontinued a short time later after several team specific supplements. Marvel has also released two games under the title of Marvel Ultimate Alliance, both within the last decade (2000–2010). The same game has been remodeled as an arcade game as well.



See alsoEdit

Template:Portal box



  1. "Marvel Entertainment/Inc. 10-K for 12/31/07", filed February 28, 2008
  2. Ultimate Marvel Universe. Retrieved October 18, 2008.
  3. 3.0 3.1 3.2 Per statement of ownership, dated October 2, 1939, published in Marvel Mystery Comics #4 (February 1940), p. 40; reprinted in Marvel Masterworks: Golden Age Marvel Comics Volume 1 (Marvel Comics, 2004, ISBN 0-7851-1609-5), p. 239
  4. 4.0 4.1 Daniels, Les. Marvel: Five Fabulous Decades of the World's Greatest Comics (Harry N. Abrams, New York, 1991), pp. 27 & 32-33. ISBN 0-8109-3821-9. "Timely Publications became the name under which Goodman first published a comic book line. He eventually created a number of companies to publish comics ... but Timely was the name by which Goodman's Golden Age comics were known." "Marvel wasn't always Marvel; in the early 1940s the company was known as Timely Comics...."
  5. 5.0 5.1 Per researcher Keif Fromm, Alter Ego #49, p. 4 (caption), Marvel Comics #1, cover-dated October 1939, quickly sold out 80,000 copies, prompting Goodman to produce a second printing, cover-dated November 1939. The latter appears identical except for a black bar over the October date in the inside front-cover indicia, and the November date added at the end. That sold approximately 800,000 copies—a large figure in the market of that time. Also per Fromm, the first issue of Captain America Comics sold nearly one million copies.
  6. Powerhouse Pepper at the Grand Comics Database
  7. A Smithsonian Book of Comic-Book Comics (Smithsonian Institution / Harry N. Abrams, 1981)
  8. Lee, Stan, and Mair, George. Excelsior!: The Amazing Life of Stan Lee (Fireside, 2002), p. 22. ISBN 0-684-87305-2
  9. Simon, Joe, with Jim Simon. The Comic Book Makers (Crestwood/II Publications, 1990), p. 208. ISBN 1-887591-35-4
  10. Cover, All Surprise Comics #12 at the Grand Comics Database
  11. Per Les Daniels in Marvel: Five Fabulous Decades of the World's Greatest Comics (Harry N. Abrams, New York, 1991) ISBN 0-8109-3821-9, pp. 67-68: "The success of EC had a definite influence on Marvel. As Stan Lee recalls, 'Martin Goodman would say, "Stan, let's do a different kind of book," and it was usually based on how the competition was doing. When we found that EC's horror books were doing well, for instance, we published a lot of horror books'".
  12. Marvel : MC (Brand) at the Grand Comics Database.
  13. Apocryphal legend has it that in 1961, during a game of golf, either Jack Liebowitz or Irwin Donenfeld of rival DC Comics (then known as National Periodical Publications) bragged about DC's success with the Justice League (which had debuted in The Brave and the Bold #28 [February 1960] before going on to its own title) to Timely and Atlas publisher Martin Goodman. However, film producer and comics historian Michael Uslan partly debunked the story in a letter published in Alter Ego #43 (December 2004), pp. 43-44: Template:Cquote Goodman, a publishing trend-follower aware of the JLA's strong sales, did direct his comics editor, Stan Lee, to create a comic book series about a team of superheroes. According to Lee in Origins of Marvel Comics (Simon and Schuster/Fireside Books, 1974), p. 16: Template:Cquote
  14. Fantastic Four at the Grand Comics Database
  15. "Marvel Original Superhero Comics of the 1960s",, n.d.
  16. Genter, Robert. "'With Great Power Comes Great Responsibility': Cold War Culture and the Birth of Marvel Comics", The Journal of Popular Culture 40:6, 2007
  17. Commentators such as comics historian Greg Theakston have suggested that the decision to include monsters and initially to distance the new breed of superheroes from costumes was a conscious one,Template:By whom and born of necessity. Since DC distributed Marvel's output at the time, Theakston theorizes that "Goodman and Lee decided to keep their superhero line looking as much like their horror line as they possibly could," downplaying "the fact that [Marvel] was now creating heroes" with the knock-on effect that they ventured "into deeper waters, where DC had never considered going". See: Ro, Ronin. Tales to Astonish: Jack Kirby, Stan Lee and the American Comic Book Revolution, pp. 86-88 (Bloomsbury, 2004)
  18. Template:Cite news
  19. Roberts, Randy, and James S. Olson. American Experiences: Readings in American History: Since 1865, 4th edition (American Experiences / Addison–Wesley, 1998), p. 317. ISBN 978-0-3210-1031-5: "Marvel Comics employed a realism in both characterization and setting in its superhero titles that was unequaled in the comic book industry."
  20. Boucher, Geoff, "Hero Complex" (column): "Jack Kirby, the abandoned hero of Marvel's grand Hollywood adventure, and his family's quest", Los Angeles Times, September 25, 2009 (online; scheduled for print edition September 27, 2009)
  21. Daniels, Marvel: Five Fabulous Decades of the World's Greatest Comics, p. 139.
  22. Marvel Entertainment Group, Inc.
  23. Nyberg, Amy Kiste. Seal of Approval: History of the Comics Code. University Press of Mississippi, Jackson, Miss., 1998
  24. Daniels, Marvel, pp.154-155
  25. Template:Cite web
  26. Bullpen Bulletins: "The King is Back! 'Nuff Said!", in Marvel Comics cover dated October 1975, including Fantastic Four #163
  27. Specific series- and issue-dates in article are collectively per GCD and other databases given under References
  28. Both pencils and inks per UHBMCC; GCD remains uncertain on inker.
  29. "Marvel Focuses On Direct Sales," The Comics Journal #59 (October 1980), pp. 11-12.
  30. "DC Overcomes Marvel In Sales," The Comics Journal #118 (December 1987), p. 24.
  31. 31.0 31.1 "Marvel Reaches Agreement to Emerge from Bankruptcy," New York Times (July 11, 1997), p. D3.
  32. "Bye Bye Marvel; Here Comes Image: Portacio, Claremont, Liefeld, Jim Lee Join McFarlane's New Imprint at Malibu," The Comics Journal #148 (February 1992), pp. 11-12.
  33. Duin, Steve and Richardson, Mike (ed.s) "Capital City" in Comics Between the Panels (Dark Horse Publishing, 1998) ISBN 1-56971-344-8, p. 69
  34. Template:Cite web
  35. Template:Cite news
  36. "Hello Again: Marvel Goes with Diamond," The Comics Journal #193 (February 1997), pp. 9-10.
  37. Duin, Steve and Richardson, Mike (ed.s) "Diamond Comic Distributors" in Comics Between the Panels (Dark Horse Publishing, 1998) ISBN 1-56971-344-8, p. 125-126
  38. Raviv, Dan. Comic Wars. New York: Random House, 2002. page number?
  39. Template:Cite web
  40. Template:Cite web
  41. Gustines, George. "Pulpy TV and Soapy Comics Find a Lot to Agree On", The New York Times, October 31, 2006
  42. Template:Cite web
  43. Colton, David. "Marvel Comics Shows Its Marvelous Colors in Online Archive", USA Today, November 12, 2007
  44. Template:Cite web
  45. Frisk, Andy. Marvel Mystery Comics 70th Anniversary Special #1 (review),, June 6, 2009.
  46. "Celebrate Marvel's 70th Anniversary with Your Local Comic Shop", Marvel Comics press release via Comic Book Resources, July 31, 2009. WebCitation archive.
  47. Template:Cite web
  48. 48.0 48.1 48.2 48.3 48.4 48.5 48.6 Sanderson, Peter. The Marvel Comics Guide to New York City, (Pocket Books, 2007) p. 59. ISBN 978-1-4165-3141-8
  49. "Marvel to move to new, 60,000-square-foot offices in October", Comic Book Resources, September 21, 2010.
  50. Universal's Islands of Adventures: Marvel Super Hero Island official site
  51. 51.0 51.1 Reuters newswire, "Marvel Theme Park to Open in Dubai by 2011", March 22, 2007


External linksEdit


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