OK, a gap opened up in the Sourcewall, see, and out dropped disks of the old 60's Marvel Captain America, Hulk, Thor, Iron Man and Sub-Mariner cartoon.  It's been close to forty-five since I've seen them last, and I never even knew they was Thor and Sub-Mariner ones when I was a kid. So, anyway, let's see what I see.

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Episode Seven:  "The Grey Gargoyle"

"Everyone knows you are his Earth friend." What? When did that become common knowledge?  The whole "Odin refuses to let Thor marry Jane Foster" thing becomes wearisome fairly quickly.  One wishes that Odin would just sit down and  tell Thor his reasons, he must have some. Heck, I can think of some good reasons why a god marrying a mortal would be a bad idea.

Episode Eight "The Mysterious Mister Hyde"

Standard "Thor vs. Bad Guy story with the Thor/Jane thread hovering in the background

Episode Nine: "Every Hand Against Him"

In which Loki enlists the Cobra and Mister Hyde. Isn't Thor a little bit out of these guys' league? Didn't Daredevil end up kicking their asses at some point? Oh, and apparently, Thor could create time warps back in those days, which he did while waiting for Odin to decide to save Jane.

Immortus took away Thor's ability to create time warps in the 70s. The explanation was his mastery of time was greater than Odin's so he could break his enchantment.

Cobra and Mr. Hyde fought Thor first. When Daredevil faced them, he tried to lure them to him by dressing like Thor. Unfortunately the real Thor attacked him for impersonating him and told him not to do it again or else.

The Baron said:

Episode Seven: "The Grey Gargoyle"

"Everyone knows you are his Earth friend." What? When did that become common knowledge?

Does "Everyone" mean Asgardians? I guess they used "Earth" because "Midgard" wouldn't be understood by most viewers.

Now the cartoon has taken a few steps back. The full picture here is that Stan Lee began scripting the feature himself with #97, and that's when the Thor/Jane/Odin soap opera started. Jack Kirby had pencilled #83-#89, #93 and returned for #97, but the #98-#100 instalments were drawn by Don Heck. "Tales of Asgard" also started in #97 and was always done by Kirby (as were all the covers). Kirby permanently returned to the main feature with #101.

#98 introduced the Human Cobra, and #99-#100 Mr Hyde. They subsequently twice fought Thor as a team, in #105-#106 and #110-#111. Loki increased their power the second time.

The Grey Gargoyle episode combines his two appearances to that point, in #107 and #113. He was used elsewhere in the Silver Age, but not again as a Thor foe.

The Mr Hyde episode was based on the #99-#100 two-parter (drawn by Heck).(1)

The title of and time warp in the Cobra/Hyde episode are from #110-#111.

(1) Episode two, the hammer theft/Sandu one, was based on two Joe Sinnott stories.



Richard Willis said:

The Baron said:

Episode Seven: "The Grey Gargoyle"

"Everyone knows you are his Earth friend." What? When did that become common knowledge?

Does "Everyone" mean Asgardians? I guess they used "Earth" because "Midgard" wouldn't be understood by most viewers.

To clarify - this is the Grey Gargoyle speaking to Don Blake, apparently implying that it is common knowledge  that Don Blake is pals with Thor.

Episode Ten: "The Tomorrow Man"

In which Thor battles the Tomorrow Man.

1)We see Thor helping out the Army with a missile test.  Thor is much more of a conventional "super-hero" in these early stories.

2)Thor has "hurricane breath"!

3)Odin reduces Thor's powers by half, but then restores them the first time he gets into trouble.

Zarrko the Tomorrow Man debuted in #86 and returned in #101-#102. This episode combines both stories. He was the first Thor-foe other than Loki to make a return appearance, but he didn't appear again in the Silver Age, presumably because he was superseded by Kang.

The shot of the world where Zarrko will rule "in loneliness and terror" is from #122. Thor takes a reporter who has learned his secret identity and is blackmailing him into the far future and threatens to leave him there.

Wonder what they based their decision on which comics to adapt? Zarrko is a poor choice.

So many Avengers episodes yet they skipped #1. I'd guess they avoided #3 for the same reason they left Namor out of #4, they didn't want any of the five stars to be the villain.

Episode Eleven: "Enter Hercules"

Jane's in the hospital, and Odin asksZeus for help to break up Thor and Jane, so Zeus sends Herc to Earth, where he takes up with Jane. Herc and Thor fight, and Odin takes away half of Thor's power mid-fight, so Thor loses, but Jane still loves him anyhow. So, I guess there'll be more of this in the next episode.

Interesting they rewrote it so Odin asks Zeus to have Hercules steal Jane from Thor. The studio apparently doesn't like coincidences.

Episode Twelve: "The Power of Pluto"

Herc goes to Hollywood, where he is quickly tricked by Pluto and Hippolyta, and Thor goes to rescue him.  You  know you're a dummy if you make Thor look like a rocket scientist.

There's another episode, but it's glitchy so I couldn't watch much of it. It seems to involve Thor and the Avengers fighting the Lava Men.  I'll assume the Lava Men won and humanity was wiped out.

Next up: Iron Man!

The Thor/Hercules/Pluto storyline (from Journey into Mystery #124-Thor #130) is commonly seen as one of the feature's greatest. Hercules had appeared previously, in Journey into Mystery Annual #1 in which he and Thor met and fought on Mt Olympus.(1) The present story was the one that introduced him into the present-day Marvel universe. While it was running he also met and fought the Hulk in Tales to Astonish #79.

By the sounds of things the cartoon's story is a simplified version of the comic's. In #124 Don Blake reveals his true identity as Thor to Jane.(2) In #125 he compounds this by defying the furious Odin and returning to Earth, which is why Odin reduces his power during the fight in #126. Thor and Hercules don't meet up until the end of #125 and their fight takes up the whole of the #126 instalment. In #130 Thor takes on the whole might of Hades to free Hercules from his contract with Pluto. I think this was where Kirby's depiction of the gods as using advanced technology really broke through, although there were examples of it earlier. At the instalment's end Thor and Hercules pledge friendship.

#126 was the issue with which the comic became Thor. Its cover is much-homaged.

Thor fought the Lava Man in #97. In Avengers #5 the Avengers took on his whole race.

(1) A different version of Hercules was summoned by Immortus to fight Thor in Avengers #10. Kirby's version was obviously modelled after the versions portrayed by Steve Reeves and his successors.

(2) So for her remaining time in the book - she was written out in #136 - she was basically Thor's girlfriend. Don Blake hardly appeared.

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