Taking a look through the thousands of back issues at Von’s comics, we find our…
Obscure Back Issue of the Week:
Not Brand Echh #7
I actually had another comic lined up for this week’s Obscure Back Issue, but when I stumbled across this thing I knew I had to write about it. I love spoof comics, especially when they are actually funny. While this book wasn’t a gut buster, it made me chuckle a few times. It was mostly an interesting look at how Marvel saw themselves as a company compared to DC in the late 60s. (The publishing date for the book is April 1968.)
As you can see by the cover, the book boasts being an origin issue, featuring the beginnings of the Fantastical Four and Stuporman. I’m not quite sure who did what on the issue, but Stan Lee is credited as the Zoo Keeper, which I’m assuming means writer. But who knows.
The actual content of the book is mostly made up of quick jabs at DC and the original man in tights, Superman. I found it funny that Marvel made fun of the competition by putting a big money symbol on Stuporman’s chest. Was Marvel not in it for the money, merely the love? Yeah, right. Another big portion of the book is parodying celebrities of the time, many of which I couldn’t remember names for, but recognized some of their caricatures (one being Ronald “Ronnie” Reagan). One of my favorite things, though, was the ads. There is an awesome ad for the Frank Zappa & the Mothers album, We’re Only In It For The Money, as well as an ad that asks if you are “Shamed by Your English?”
It’s a fun book overall, part of a short-lived series I’d buy if they had a relatively cheap collection of. As for this particular issue, Overstreet Price Guide lists it at $40 in mint condition, but we’re selling it for a measly $6.95 in pretty good condition. So if you want something to tickle the ol’ funny bone, as well as wet that nostalgic collector’s appetite, look no further than the back issue bin at Von’s Comics!
Check out the Wikipedia article for more info on the series.