Friday, May 30, 2014
Number 1585: Man of the atom
And now, back to our regularly scheduled post...
Doctor Solar, Man of the Atom was created by Gold Key comics to compete against the popular superheroes of the day. At the time I liked the first three issues, finding them well drawn in a more sophisticated, illustrative style, but lost interest when Dr. Solar gained a costume. I just didn’t think he could go toe-to-toe with what was coming from Marvel Comics. But I was wrong; the costume was what fans were clamoring for.
Jerry Bails, the godfather of comics fandom in the early '60s, had a letter in Doctor Solar Man of the Atom #7 in 1964, praising Gold Key for putting Dr. S. in a costume. Jerry was a bit more conservative about villains. He said, “Nothing destroys a super-hero faster than fantastic villains.” I’m reasonably certain the readers of superheroes wanted those fantastic villains...as Marvel Comics had proved.