Saturday, 11 April 2015

Marvel Flashback: Machine Man #10

Machine Man #10 (Marvel Comics)

Marv Wolfman (w) Steve Ditko (a)

"If we delay even another moment Machine Man will be dead"

The issue opens with Machine Man being rushed into a laboratory following a bust up with the Hulk which actually took place in the Hulks own mag (#235 to 237). Will he survive?

Silly question really as this was a re-launch of title that had been discontinued eight months earlier after the original run with Jack Kirby came to en end. This time the reigns were with two other Marvel "big guns", Marv Wolfman and the great Steve Ditko.


These days it would be launched with a new #1, but back then it was fairly common practise for companies to revive series with the old numbering.

This issue relates or rather reboots the origin of Aaron Stack, the "Machine Man" as robot X-51 from a military programme. Not quite the origin we all knew but then Marvel had lost the 2001 franchise so in order to integrate the character into the Marvel universe a new origin was necessary.

Of course like so many Marvel heroes he had to find his way in the world. As he muses his existence:

"But if I'm not a robot..and I'm not a human being.. what am I?"

His "father" Abel Stack a scientist appears in a hologram message (think Star Wars) and tells him that;

"Aaron, you are not merely a walking, talking computer. You are a thinking living creature of God. If you were a mere thing you would not have found a human being to help you.."

There's more but you get the gist.

Regretfully this only lasted until #19, but I've always been a fan of both the original Kirby and this Ditko run. Worth getting an issue or two if you come across them.

Aarron does appear in the MU from time to time but his last solo series didn't last too long.


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