I don’t think Marvel did house ads that were anywhere near as good as DC’s. I did, however, like this one for its Marvel Treasury Edition line. Those oversize, tabloid comics still hold a strange fascination for me. I’m quite willing to accept that this is mainly down to sheer nostalgia. Whereas DC seemed to make a little bit of an effort for its tabloid line, Marvel just seemed to chuck any old bunch of reprints between new covers and hope for the best. So, it’s not content that draws me to the Marvel Treasuries—it’s the size.
When you’re a little kid, these things are huge! And, yes, size IS important when you’re seven. A big and chunky comic is far superior to a thin, floppy one.
Another big part of the draw is that they were not well distributed in the UK. I remember seeing my first ever in a local newsagent—Marvel Treasury Edition #11—and racing for home in order to borrow some money to buy it. And I don’t think I saw another one until several years later when #17 appeared. These books were like gold dust.
These ads for Marvel Treasuries offered the enticing opportunity to order back issues. But, as a kid, I had no idea how to go about this. How did one order something from the US? And just what the heck was a zip code?? These were the tough issues we had to struggle with as British comics fans in the 1970s.
The prices on these ads are amusing now. Marvel Treasuries for just a couple of bucks??! If only that was still true. While you can get issues fairly cheaply, the rpice rises steeply for higher grades. Not surprising really, considering that the tabloid size made them award to store in anything like mint condition. Not that we, as kids, had any intention of doing such a thing!
Marvel Treasuries. I love ‘em.
For loads more in-depth information, check out TREASURY COMICS
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