Marvel Treasury Ad

And so it came to pass: three months after its inaugural tabloid, Marvel fired up the old hyperbole machine for the second. This time the subject was, perhaps not surprisingly, the Fantastic Four. After all, was not their host publication “the world’s greatest comic magazine”?

The cover image for Marvel Treasury Edition #2, by Jazzy John Romita, remains iconic, later showing up on any number of t-shirts and lunch boxes, while the interior housed a bunch of top notch reprints from the glory days of Lee and Kirby. Prime amongst these was an edited presentation of the Galactus “trilogy” from FF #48-50, that saw the first appearance of both the planet-eating antagonist and his greatest herald, the Silver Surfer. As if that wasn’t enough Big John Buscema provided a two-page pin-up of Marvel’s first family. A lavish—nay, “deluxe”—package indeed!

This ad still appeals to me now, so you can easily imagine how it would’ve looked to a kid at the time. As if the gigantic dimensions weren’t enough of a draw, that magic phrase “100 pages” would be enough to get me day dreaming about someday owning this monster. A hundred pages of comics seemed like an almost unimaginable number. Of course, in the UK we never saw these things—not where I was living anyway—though the tabloids did receive some limited distribution, and were advertised in Marvel UK comics. The first tabloid I ever clapped eyes on was Marvel Treasury Edition #11, published in 1976, which was, coincidentally, another FF volume.

It was to be another decade and a half before I finally got my grubby mitts on #2, but it was worth the wait. I wanted it, and I got it! Good ol’ Stan, he always knew how to press my buttons. Kids today really don’t know what they’re missing.

Image ©2011 Marvel Characters, Inc