Dangling Plot Threads and... er, what was I saying?

It seems to me that there were a repeating number of subplots running in some Marvel silver age series, that never were resolved...or, that were going somewhere and dropped along the way.

 

For instance, there's the soap opera plight of Coach Thorton and Whitey Mullins... head football coach for Empire U, who was agonizing over his lack of a team-player quarterback in FF #50-61, but never paid off anywhere....did it? Some place along the line, we just left his plight dangling, with he coach hoping for a winning season and realizing Wyatt Wingfoot was the solution...except he was off adventuring with Johnny "flaming youth" Storm.

 

How about the Inhuman's research into humanity from the Tales of the Inhumans in the back of Thor #146-152... did Triton's adventure ever pay off with any intellegence?

 

And how about that pesky "Growing Man" of Kang's?  You know, they one that keeps getting loose and being discovered "before his time" in Thor #140?  Have we ever established a coherent timeline for Kang's weapon?  I mean, what exactly was he being saved and set up for?  Did we ever get to see it?

(And wasn't that supposed to be Hank Pym's game, anyway?  Did Kang see the value in having a GiantMan on his team, and decide to copy him?  Just were does this fit in Kang's battle plan anyhow?)

Any other major plot threads left dangling?

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I'm not so sure... after all, Stan ALSO brought Peter Parker into it as late as FF #61 or 62 when he had him photographing the football game where Torch had just left, when Crystal arrived... only one year after they were imprisoned behind the "Great Barrier" Dome.

I think Stan basically just forgot about them all... as Johnny and Wyatt got the rover from T'Challa, the college subplot was all but left behind.

I think there's at least a one shot there... maybe an "Untold Tale of Spider-Man" or "Untold Tales of the Torch" or the FF.... and it could pick up the thread and take the characters to conclusion, working in an around established continuity of Johnny and Wyatt Wingfoot... whom we know came back to civilization as late as FF #68 with Johnny... but wasn't really seen in the series again until #80 "The Living Totem". Seems there's a lot of wiggle room to pitch a one shot, or maybe a mini series... possibly a pitch to see if there's any interest in a Football/College campus drama series involving some of Marvel's heroes and Wyatt, Whitey Mullins, the Coach, the wife, etc...

After ish #61, I don't recall any references to Johnny being in college pop again until early in Gerry Conway's run, #138 I think, when Wyatt shows up to invite them to his graduation and we learn that Johnny had actually dropped out.  More likely it seems it proved too difficult to have Johnny in college and still be an active member of the team and Kirby just opted not to show him in college at all (and even before Johnny was shown on his first day at college in #50, Kirby never showed Johnny in high school in the pages off FF; for all the readers who didn't follow his adventures in Strange Tales knew, Johnny might have been a high school dropout!).  And Lee never bothered to make any verbal references to Johnny's college career either, not even after Kirby left and Lee might have instructed Romita or Buscema to give Johnny some class time in the mag; instead, we usually saw Johnny moping because Crystal had returned to the Hidden Refuge.  Hmm, seems Lee wasn't quite as keen on keeping Crystal around as Kirby was.

Since Wyatt WIngfoot was originally supposed to have his own series, I wonder what the idea was? Would it have been an attempt at a Millie the Model for guys? Would it have revolved around the coach trying to get Wyatt to play on his team? Would it have been a Challengers like series with Wyatt searching for Bigfoot and the Loch Ness Monster? It seems like a lot of interesting and unusual ideas got tossed around for awhile then dropped to do more typical superhero stuff. Wyatt helps Johnny look for the Great Refuge with Lockjaw, a story that goes absolutely nowhere, and the Inhumans get out anyway while they're playing Time Tunnel, so their storyline really went nowhere and seemed to have no purpose except to introduce the Evil Eye so that years later a different writer could have two teams (one not even existing at the time) fight over it. Was Jack trying to do something with the character but Stan said give him powers and put a costume on him or he's gone? After establishing Franklin's nanny was a witch, nothing is done with the character until after Jack leaves. Is Agatha Harkness the last character Jack gave Marvel? If he had stayed and given Marvel The Demon, would Witch Boy have been her nephew? Since coming to this site I am shocked at the ideas and creativity Marvel just tossed away for apparently no particular reason, like Captain Marvel#16 establishing a new storyline that suddenly got tossed out on the last page so the next issue could rip off Shazam. As for Stan not wanting Crystal around, didn't the idea she suddenly had no immune system and had to leave Johnny (again) just before Jack left? Sometimes it almost sounds like Stan was trying to see how much he could annoy Jack before he walked out.
 
Kirk G said:

I'm not so sure... after all, Stan ALSO brought Peter Parker into it as late as FF #61 or 62 when he had him photographing the football game where Torch had just left, when Crystal arrived... only one year after they were imprisoned behind the "Great Barrier" Dome.

I think Stan basically just forgot about them all... as Johnny and Wyatt got the rover from T'Challa, the college subplot was all but left behind.

I think there's at least a one shot there... maybe an "Untold Tale of Spider-Man" or "Untold Tales of the Torch" or the FF.... and it could pick up the thread and take the characters to conclusion, working in an around established continuity of Johnny and Wyatt Wingfoot... whom we know came back to civilization as late as FF #68 with Johnny... but wasn't really seen in the series again until #80 "The Living Totem". Seems there's a lot of wiggle room to pitch a one shot, or maybe a mini series... possibly a pitch to see if there's any interest in a Football/College campus drama series involving some of Marvel's heroes and Wyatt, Whitey Mullins, the Coach, the wife, etc...

I'd wanted to reply to the Iron Man and Daredevil Together Again? topic but it appears to be locked. It mentioned several titles were off a month before they switched to 48 pages for one month. I've noticed when the switch happened that both Thor and Avengers (which always had exactly a 100 issue gap between them) skipped a month. Don't remember reading the announcement about Iron Man and Daredevil merging but that would explain the Zodiac story, and another Iron Man appearance in Daredevil not long afterwards. Iron Man was bimonthly for quite awhile so it's likely there was talk of cancelling him, but I think that happened a few years after the announcement. I do know Stan stated in 1973 that Marvel had finally pulled ahead into the number one spot the year before. Didn't realize it was because DC lost ground with those 48 page giants.

Re the Shazam rip-off, when Roy Thomas took Captain Mar-Vell in that direction I wouldn't call it a rip-off so much as a tribute to a Golden Age hero who hadn't been in print in about 15 years by that point (and whom most young readers at the time, such as myself, had never even heard of) having been forced into cancellation by DC (remember the Golden Age Captain Marvel was part of the Fawcett Comics line) and was not expected to ever be brought back.  Who knew then (in 1969) that DC themselves would bring back the Big Red Cheese about 4 years later but due to Marvel owning the copyright on the name Captain Marvel, they had to title the comic Shazam!
 
Ron M. said:

Since Wyatt WIngfoot was originally supposed to have his own series, I wonder what the idea was? Would it have been an attempt at a Millie the Model for guys? Would it have revolved around the coach trying to get Wyatt to play on his team? Would it have been a Challengers like series with Wyatt searching for Bigfoot and the Loch Ness Monster? It seems like a lot of interesting and unusual ideas got tossed around for awhile then dropped to do more typical superhero stuff. Wyatt helps Johnny look for the Great Refuge with Lockjaw, a story that goes absolutely nowhere, and the Inhumans get out anyway while they're playing Time Tunnel, so their storyline really went nowhere and seemed to have no purpose except to introduce the Evil Eye so that years later a different writer could have two teams (one not even existing at the time) fight over it. Was Jack trying to do something with the character but Stan said give him powers and put a costume on him or he's gone? After establishing Franklin's nanny was a witch, nothing is done with the character until after Jack leaves. Is Agatha Harkness the last character Jack gave Marvel? If he had stayed and given Marvel The Demon, would Witch Boy have been her nephew? Since coming to this site I am shocked at the ideas and creativity Marvel just tossed away for apparently no particular reason, like Captain Marvel#16 establishing a new storyline that suddenly got tossed out on the last page so the next issue could rip off Shazam. As for Stan not wanting Crystal around, didn't the idea she suddenly had no immune system and had to leave Johnny (again) just before Jack left? Sometimes it almost sounds like Stan was trying to see how much he could annoy Jack before he walked out.
 
Kirk G said:

I'm not so sure... after all, Stan ALSO brought Peter Parker into it as late as FF #61 or 62 when he had him photographing the football game where Torch had just left, when Crystal arrived... only one year after they were imprisoned behind the "Great Barrier" Dome.

I think Stan basically just forgot about them all... as Johnny and Wyatt got the rover from T'Challa, the college subplot was all but left behind.

I think there's at least a one shot there... maybe an "Untold Tale of Spider-Man" or "Untold Tales of the Torch" or the FF.... and it could pick up the thread and take the characters to conclusion, working in an around established continuity of Johnny and Wyatt Wingfoot... whom we know came back to civilization as late as FF #68 with Johnny... but wasn't really seen in the series again until #80 "The Living Totem". Seems there's a lot of wiggle room to pitch a one shot, or maybe a mini series... possibly a pitch to see if there's any interest in a Football/College campus drama series involving some of Marvel's heroes and Wyatt, Whitey Mullins, the Coach, the wife, etc...

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