Marvel Premiere was an anthology title that Marvel comics published to showcase characters that didn’t have their own comics. This issue features Star Lord who debuted in Marvel Preview which was a black and white magazine with a similar concept. One curious thing is, in the colorized re-prints of Star Lord’s previous appearances, his hair is colored as brown. In his Marvel Premiere stories, he is blond. The tagline on the cover promises us ” a truly bizarre science-fiction blockbuster”. I’m not sure what Marvel’s definition of “blockbuster” was seeing as this was the last issue of the series, but we did get an interesting story.
The creative chores were handled by Doug Moench on script and Tom Sutton on art. Peter Quill, the Star Lord investigates a strange planet that seemed to once have had life on it, but now is deserted. Star Lord seems to be assaulted by various elemental forces and then is forced into cave. There he is presented with a hologram that tells the story of what happened to previous inhabitants of the planet. The next part of the story is told from the planet’s point of view. The planet is a sentient being and all the threatening natural occurrences were attempts by the planet at “sharing”. The story ends on a sad emotional note.
The art by Tom Sutton is good. It’s a change of pace from the typical Marvel art of the time, but it is suitably quirky and engaging. The storytelling is clear and Tom’s designs for the organic landscapes and floral of the planet are otherworldly and spooky. And although, we only see them in flashback, I really like the design of the planet’s past inhabitants.
There’s a couple of interesting ads in this issue. Right in the middle of the comic, there’s a double page spread for a Marvel Comics/ 7-11 Slurpee Contest. What I find interesting about this is the characters they use in the ad are Spiderman, Hulk, Captain America and…Spider Woman? Was Jessica Drew really that popular at the time that the average 7-11 consumer would have recognized her? On the other hand, although I’m not sure of the date I believe the Spider Woman Saturday morning cartoon might have aired around this time, so that may have influenced the decision to include her. There’s no credits for the artwork, but it features figures of the heroes that were used alot during that time period by John Romita Sr. For fun there’s a Hostess Fruit Pie ad starring the Fantastic Four ( art by Joe Sinnott? I’m totally guessing ).
The Bullpen Bulletin page has, of course hype concerning Marvel Comics coming out that month, there’s a couple mini-profiles on editors Jim Salicrup and Al Milgrom, and an interesting piece explaining why the price box on some Marvel Comics were different than others. The answer is because some comics were distributed through Curtis Circulation Company and some were direct sales.
Anyway there you have it. Marvel Premiere # 61 featuring Star Lord. An offbeat story with quirky art, but ultimately an entertaining comic book.