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90's Comic Book Speculation Crash...Again?

Hello, friends, and welcome to another face-melting episode of The Bags and Boards Show With ComicTom101 podcast! You’ll have to excuse the delay on this one, but a certain someone went to the Toronto International Film Festival and may or may not have seen the upcoming Joker; there will be more of that at a later time. So with formalities out of the way, let’s get into it!

As always, we like to take a look back at the previous week just in case you need some catching up! One of the highlights revolved around the upcoming Venom Island comic event! Marvel and writer Donny Cates made the announcement, creating a spectacular buzz for a variety of reasons. First of all, having a series with Venom in the heading seems to indicate that Spider-Man’s nemesis survives the events of Absolute Carnage. Secondly, Amazing Spider-Man #347 is getting a bit of attention, seeing as it’s probably where Venom Island will take place!

We also addressed the idea of 1st appearances vs. cameos in comics. Granted, that’s a whole article in and of itself, but suffice to say the debate is alive and well again. In House of X, Marvel listed the first appearance of Wolverine as The Incredible Hulk #180, rather than the highly sought after The Incredible Hulk #181; the debate is upon us once again!

That’s enough catch-up, because now it’s time for the latest and greatest in the world of comic book speculation with our Bags and Boards with ComicTom101 episode 90’s Comic Book Speculation Crash…? If that title alone isn’t enough to send you rushing over to the ComicTom101 YouTube channel, then allow us to instruct you to hurry on over!

Previously, we mentioned the whole Hulk 180 vs. 181 debate, but the matter is not yet resolved! Granted, the subject will likely almost never find a solid resolution, but that’s life. Even so, in an effort to try and bring some light to the situation, the comic book speculation and collecting app Key Collector posted the above image from Marvel’s official handbook, pointing out that Incredible Hulk #181 is the money book, in clear contrast to the House of X post; clearly someone somewhere is confused. With prototypes, cameos, and first appearances, comic book collecting can be like diving headfirst into a swampy miasma. This causes folks to question what books to put their money into.

In following the trend of first appearances, writer Donny Cates was tweeted by a fan, asking about Dylan Brock’s first appearance. You see, according to CGC, Venom #7 is a cameo and issue #9 is his first “full” appearance. Mr. Cates didn’t and doesn’t agree with CGC’s analysis, in turn causing a ruckus. If even the creator’s voice is ignored, then who really is responsible for dictating “first appearances”?

Let’s take a deep breath now and move on to a slightly easier topic: what’s under the Thing’s rocks? Well, while we’ve taken a peak under the Thing’s skin once before in the 90’s, courtesy of Wolverine, the recent Fantastic Four #13, gave a rather harrowing look about what lies beneath Ben Grimm’s rocky exterior. Turns out, there’s some pink, gooey flesh that’s positively revolting! Poor guy, Ben Grimm just can’t catch a break! So for anyone who was dying to know what it looked like if you peeled the Thing’s rocks off him like an onion, well now you know! We hope you’re happy!

And that concludes last’s weeks Bags and Boards Show With ComicTom101! Of course we discussed a whole lot more, but to hear to everything you missed, you’ll have to check out the ComicTom101 YouTube page and/or listen the podcast itself over on iTunes, Spotify, Soundcloud, and Stitcher! And don’t forget, come back every Sunday for a brand new episode!

As always, geek responsibly! ‘Nuff said!

- Octavio Karbank

A writer by trade and aficionado of all things pop culture, Octavio Karbank is a recent addition to the ComicTom101 team! A devoted comic book collector, with plenty of long boxes to prove it, Octavio is always on the hunt for those elusive key issues! A freelance writer who has penned articles for websites like CBR and Bleeding Cool, he’s excited to be working alongside some of the greatest minds the world of comic book speculation has to offer! If you’re interested in checking out more of his ramblings, go to his Twitter page:

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Welcome, Octavio! Great name ;)

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