The Rocket’s Blast/ComiCollector was one of the longest-running fanzines of its era. Originally, it had begun as two separate ‘zines both started in 1961–the Rocket’s Blast, created by Miami-based fan G.B. Love, and the Comicollector by Jerry Bails. Eventually, the two combined their mailing lists and merged with #29 (continuing the numbering of The Rocket’s Blast) in 1964, Over time, the unwieldy title would cause most to refer to it simply by the initials RBCC. This particular issue saw print in 1982, two decades after the original founding, and it featured a strip that is noteworthy for the talent that produced it.
The Strangest Heroes of All was an elaborate history of the entire publishing history of Marvel’s mutant super team, with words by Kurt Busiek and illustrations by Scott McCloud. It was produced in 1979 when both of them were still simply students with aspirations of breaking into the professional world of comic books, but didn’t see publication until this release in 1982–at which point, each of them were on the cusp of realizing their ambitions.
It’s a fun little fannish piece, one that shows the formative talents of each man in evidence. Scott would, of course, go on to create ZOT! and UNDERSTANDING COMICS and THE SCULPTOR and other works, while Kurt would innovate ASTRO CITY and AUTUMNLANDS and have long stints writing AVENGERS and SUPERMAN and IRON MAN and UNTOLD TALES OF SPIDER-MAN and a bevy of other things.
Kurt would also rather notoriously come up with the story concept for how Jean Grey came back from the dead after her demise as Dark Phoenix–an event that hadn’t yet happened when this story was crafted. But given the precision of information and the depth of its subject matter, you can get a sense as to why he would have cared enough to have put that much thought into the matter.
2 thoughts on “The Rocket’s Blast/ComiCollector #152”
We did the first chapter of this for a small local fanzine called X-MANIACS. I forget whether we did the second chapter for them, too, and RBCC wound up reprinting both, or whether we did the first for X-MANIACS and the second for RBCC.
Or maybe, considering the copyright date, we did the second but X-MANICS folded, and so we had it available for RBCC?
I no longer remember, but it was fun to do.
That’s great! Like an early version of X-Men: Grand Design.