A History of the Marvel Universe, Mine.
February 23, 2010

The Marvel Universe deserves more support here at AFi.

I’m part of the problem.  I grew up on the Super-Friends.  Spider-man and his Amazing Friends just did not have the same impact.  But I always loved team books.  Here is one area where Dan Didio and I agree.  Buying a team book with a bunch of heroes in it instead of a solo title made us feel like you were getting a good deal.  Many for the price of one.

So at some point I decided it was foolish to limit myself to one comic company.  I jumped into the Marvel Comic universe with Avengers 225.  The Black Knight was either in that issue or appeared shortly thereafter.  I read the Avengers for years after that.  West Coast Avengers too.  I love the characters and the crazy huge roster.


pictures credit to: The Grand Comic Book Database –


I found the X-Men to be untouchable.  Maybe it was the 4 books a month.  More likely it was the huge back story and the fact they felt like a universe unto themselves.  I also was unable to figure out why mutants were ‘bad’ in X-Men and ‘good’ in Avengers at the same time.  I also bought Iron Man’s solo title for a while.  Then came Cable.  Rob Liefield’s X-Force.  Marvel used 1990 to launch a new era of the X-Men and I saw it as an opportunity to jump in.  I loved X-Force back then.  I picked up the new adjective-less X-Men and started Uncanny X-Men and X-Factor shortly thereafter.


pictures credit to: The Grand Comic Book Database –


So what happened?  As prices on comic books increased, I bought fewer books.  Every time the cover price went up, I reviewed my titles and dropped something.  The independents such as Red Circle and First(Nexus, Badger), went first.  My history is a bit foggy as to which happened next.  The story, Age of Apocalypse, bugged me personally to the point that I dropped the entire X-Men line.  In terms of Avengers, I dropped the main book.  West Coast became Force Works and then ended.  I picked up the Avengers again when it relaunched a few years back, but only for a year or so.

The move to 3.99 books is making me once again reconsider my choices of comics.  At the same time, the Avengers is being relaunched anew, with familiar names.  I’m thinking of giving it a shot again.


pictures credit to: Marvel.com –



Erik "Superfriend" Skov
"Gathered together from the four corners of the universe." Oh, wait, that's the show, not me. Erik "SuperFriend" Skov never actually got to appear on the show, although he did watch it every week. Erik spent 6 years working for Hasbro in Pawtucket, RI before leaving for a job that paid more (Why else would a collector leave the company that was making Star Wars, Transformers, and while I was there Batman). I used to post all over the net. These days I tend to hang my hat at AFI.
Read other articles by Erik "Superfriend" Skov.





  • chad says:

    the avenges now that all that dark reign is coming to an end and the three big guns are back together deserves another shot. for i stopped the book once disassembled happen and Bendis made the scarlet wtitch go bat suck crazy. x-men never stopped reading the title. cable never touched the title for he was not my taste

  • Lt. Clutch says:

    I began reading comics on a regular basis in 1981 and for every DC book I got, there were 5 Marvel titles I loved better: Avengers and its “trinity” of Cap, Thor, and Iron Man. Amazing and Spectacular Spider-Man. Marvel Tales, Team-Up, and Two-In-One. G.I. Joe. Transformers. The MU Handbooks.

    By contrast, the only DC title I read on a regular basis was JLA.

    Nowadays, that number has been reversed. I used to like JR Jr. on Spidey and X-Men but much like Byrne or Perez, his style has changed too much for my tastes. And I don’t plan on reading another Avengers book until Bendis is no longer on it, which probably means forever from the looks of things.

    But I agree that AFI does need to show Marvel more love. There’s a heavy emphasis on DC due to all the JLU fans who post here along with Mattel/DCU collectors in general. Maybe if this new “Heroic Age” angle works out for them things will change somewhat.

  • Eric Qel-Droma says:

    Except that Bendis is Bendis and that’s not going to change. Nor should he, really–he is what he is. But my love for Bendis has waned, and I don’t want to sit through any more of his Avengers stories. Therefore, Marvel doesn’t get my money. (And I’m not being fanboyish about it–if people whose tastes correspond with mine say his new “Heroic Age” take on the Avengers is awesome, well, then I’ll buy it.) But he’s just lost me through all the stuff he’s done to the team.
    The general pathetic state of super-hero comics these days has gotten me to read more independents, though, and there’s some awesome work going on that has nothing to do with spandex. It’s fun.
    Still the fanboy in me has to ask: Would Thor really let Spidey lay a web on Mjolnir??

  • jzachery says:

    I would love to give them equal love if they would let me. All the figure toylines they release are not quite up to par. The best was when they had toybiz in the 90’s, but then they starting messing up the styles and scales. Secret Wars was a shadow of Super Powers and the current Marvel line is just not my cup of tea with articulation. Legends were too big for my apartment. LOL.
    Release a classic line in Super Powers or JLU style and I’ll show you some lovin!!! Great Blog!!!

  • jzachery says:

    As for the comics, they def get an equal share of my money:)

  • Bill says:

    I was a Marvel zombie for a very long time, not buying any DC until Death of Superman kind of roped me in. Then I bought Robin, Superboy, and Morrison’s JLA. I later discovered the New Teen Titans and got all the back issues of that legendary W. and P. run. That cemented me as a Titans fan, which I still collect. I bought PAD’s Aquaman as well. But lately (last two-three years) DC has lost me for the most part. I’m down to three DC books (and Brave and the Bold will be toast once JMS leaves).
    I wish the best for the relaunch of Avengers, but don’t get your hopes up too much, I’m pretty sure Cap is actually Bucky (check out the gun on his picture), so we’re really only getting 2/3 of the Big Three.

  • stcardinal says:

    It was the X-Men and X-Force for me as a kid. I grew up reading them in the late 80s and 90s.

  • Joe says:

    Generally, in my case, a DC line gets me into collecting before I expand to the Marvel counterpart.

    Minimates- Got the DC ones, backtracked and now collect Marvel as well.

    6-inch Scale- Started with DC Direct (back when it was really 6 inch scale) and then expanded to Marvel Legends and now DCU. Dropped ML when Hasbro effed it up.

    3.75 inch- Because I never got into DCIH, (I may yet still), I never got into buying Marvel Universe. The new DCIH sculpts might make me change my mind though…

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