Having become enamored of the Fantastic Four, I went in search of more information about the team. Specifically, I went to my local library, which had a pretty decent selection of books about comics in its adult section. I knew that ORIGINS OF MARVEL COMICS featured the first appearance of the FF, so that was what I was looking for. When I got there, ORIGINS was checked out (and I never did find it there), but SON OF ORIGINS was on the shelf. Flipping through it, it was the two-panel appearance of the FF in the first AVENGERS story that got me to check it out–remember, I hated Marvel Comics at this point based on a couple of bad experiences, so this represented a leap of faith. Not that big a leap, of course, since it was coming from the library, and I wasn’t paying for it…

I found that I liked about half of it. The Silver Surfer, Watcher and SHIELD stories put me off, and I wasn’t crazy about the second Daredevil and Iron Man jobs either. (In retrospect, it’s clear that the art style was what did it, Gene Colan and John Buscema being far removed from the classic DC style that I then liked.) But the X-Men tale got me to pick up the current issue (#108, John Byrne’s first), which, though confusing, was enticing enough to make me a regular reader. The first Iron Man story was good, so even though I didn’t care for the second one, I bought IRON MAN #111. Similarly, I liked the first Daredevil story, and the first issue I bought on the stands, #150, didn’t disappoint either. The Avengers story was my favorite thing in the book, but the first issue of AVENGERS I sought out (#168, by Jim Shooter and George Perez) didn’t win me over–three months later, I’d pick up both #170 & #171 together on the racks and become a convert. 

I was now a Marvel Comics reader…

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