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John Byrne
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Grumpy Old Guy

Joined: 11 May 2005
Posts: 129258
Posted: 22 November 2022 at 4:33pm | IP Logged | 1 post reply

For no particular reason, this morning I found myself flipping thru the trade paperbacks of THE OFFICIAL HANDBOOK OF THE MARVEL UNIVERSE.

OH, the pain! So many truly ugly characters, and so many decent characters turned to mush by constant retcons and archeology. And sadly, the fingerprints of my old friend Mark Gruenwald are everywhere. He did so very much want to turn Marvel into DC.

Iíve joked that the real Marvel died when I started working there, but the rot was beginning to set in long before that.

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Michael Penn
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Joined: 12 April 2006
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Posted: 22 November 2022 at 4:57pm | IP Logged | 2 post reply

I could not say that there was any one deathblow to what the real Marvel had been, but for me a wounding early strike was the final page of AMAZING SPIDER-MAN #100 and the ensuing so-called "Six Arms Saga." Even to this day, my reaction is... what the f...?!
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Brian Floyd
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Joined: 07 July 2006
Location: United States
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Posted: 22 November 2022 at 8:37pm | IP Logged | 3 post reply

One More Day/Brand New Day is what finally soured me on Marvel.

DC feeling the need to reboot every time an editor-in-chief sneezes is what soured me on them.


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Joe Hollon
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Posted: 22 November 2022 at 9:07pm | IP Logged | 4 post reply

Ironically, OHOTMU is one of the key things I encountered
as I was getting into comics that solidified me as a
Marvel Kid.

Marvel has unquestionably become what pre-Crisis DC was.
I notice this whenever I read a Spider-Man comic that
ties in with the whole "Spiderverse" thing which I don't
really understand (nor do I want to). Alternate versions
of multiple characters and where I really think they go
off the rails is how the characters are so AWARE of the
fact that they are "alternates". Like they literally
introduce themselves "Hello I'm Gwen Stacy from Earth-
422" or whatever. Stupid.
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Robert Bradley
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Joined: 20 September 2006
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Posted: 22 November 2022 at 9:13pm | IP Logged | 5 post reply

Ms. Marvel, Spider-Woman and She-Hulk was the beginning of the end.

They went from having ideas to having defivitive names and creating characters to plug into them in order to squeeze as much as they could out of successful characters.

You could say Captain Mar-Vell was the first sign of this, and maybe he was, but at least they had an somewhat interesting concept for him (scout for an alien invasion, who blends into society and then becomes sympathetic to it).

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John Popa
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Posted: 22 November 2022 at 9:20pm | IP Logged | 6 post reply

As a kid, I love OHOTMU just to see all the cool characters I hadn't encountered yet! Even then a lot of the histories were pretty convoluted. Trying to do a similar approach with today's continuity is probably impossible. 
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Peter Martin
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Posted: 22 November 2022 at 9:38pm | IP Logged | 7 post reply

I liked OHOTMU a lot when I was young, but I can see what you're talking about, JB. It was interesting to discover some of the things it contained, but looking back on it, there were a lot of characters I would have been quite happy to never learn about! One that sticks out in my head is Angar the Screamer. The way they coloured him in OHOTMU made it look like he was some kind of leonine character, rather than basically a hippie.

It was always fun to find out who had been chosen to draw the faves and to see which panels had been chosen to illustrate their powers/history. I used to get a kick out of it if I had an issue with one of those panels (and I recall a lot of JB panels were included).
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Greg McPhee
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Joined: 25 August 2004
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Posted: 22 November 2022 at 10:05pm | IP Logged | 8 post reply

He did so very much want to turn Marvel into DC.

====================================================

I've always said that given his work on CAPTAIN AMERICA, SQUDRON SUPREME and QUASAR that Mark Gruenwald would have been a natural fit for SUPERMAN, JUSTICE LEAGUE OF AMERICA and THE FLASH.
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Brian Miller
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Joined: 28 July 2004
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Posted: 22 November 2022 at 11:44pm | IP Logged | 9 post reply

I still have a soft spot in my heart for the DELUXE EDITION with the
connecting JB covers.
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Mark Haslett
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Joined: 19 April 2004
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Posted: 23 November 2022 at 12:58am | IP Logged | 10 post reply

JB: Iíve joked that the real Marvel died when I started working there, but the rot was beginning to set in long before that.

**

It's hard to grapple with what you're saying here since I wasn't around until after you started-- but there is the ring of a dark truth here. It's a VERY strange thought!

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Michael Casselman
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Posted: 23 November 2022 at 1:50pm | IP Logged | 11 post reply

I'm surprised Marvel hasn't introduced a character named 'Ohotmu' as some omniscient character who catalogs their alternate realities.
Or... have they?
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John Byrne
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Grumpy Old Guy

Joined: 11 May 2005
Posts: 129258
Posted: 23 November 2022 at 4:15pm | IP Logged | 12 post reply

Amazing Gruenie didn't think of that!!
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