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Walk Down the Comic Book Memory Lane Hulk Smash MASH!
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Click for larger image of the cover of Marvel Two-In-One the Thing and the Incredible Hulk

I hope to make this walk down memory lane a continuing series of articles choosing a particular story from comic's past that either have some comic book historical significance or just important for my own personal nostalgia's sake. This time I want to look at Marvel Two-In-One number 46 that came out in 1978. This one isn't like the first story ever written by Alan Moore, John Byrne, Stan Lee, or anything like that. No this one is just one I used to carry around all over the yard reading all through the following summer. My original copy was extremely worn out. Luckily I found a much better copy for my collection.

It does have a lot of points in the nostalgia department for kids that grew up in the 70's. This one written and drawn by Alan Kupperberg was wrote around the Incredible Hulk TV show, and if you liked superheroes back then you probably were glued to the set every Wednesday or Friday night the Incredible Hulk aired.

It starts out with the Thing the blue eyed idol o' millions coolin' his heels like some superhero has been while the Hulk makes it big with his own TV series.

The Thing get's so mad he smashes his own TV set.

 In the first 3 pages alone not only is the Incredible Hulk show referred to but also the Fonz from Happy Days, Sesame Street, and Laverne and Shirley.

So the Thing heads for Hollywood, California to set things straight and get his own TV show going. Of course in real life he had his own show with the Fantastic Four in 1978 and in 79'  with Fred and Barney Meet the Thing.

Meanwhile, back in the cold nighttime of the Nevada desert, a tortured scientist roams the streets with no shirt or shoes of course walking upon a TV in a store window. On the set plays the Hulk getting kissed by a girl. Instead of being overjoyed Banner is angered by having his life turned into a soap opera and transforms into the Hulk smashing the sets. Then he's off to California.

Meanwhile Karen Page Hollywood actress is kidnapped at the same time the Thing arrives on set and the Hulk lands busting through the M.A.S.H. set. Of course the Hulk blames the Thing for making Hulk look dumb on TV and a huge fight begins. The Thing does the best he can fighting the Hulk and trying to catch up to the kidnappers at the same time.

Hulk Smash MASH!

What a shocking twist ending, the Thing starring Thing in the Family!

By the end the Hulk decides his show is ok, or he'll be back to smash of course. The kidnappers are caught, and the Hulk jumps off into the sunset. Meanwhile, the Thing goes back to New York to await what he hopes to be a grand and glorious TV contract. Instead what he gets is a proposal to star in, "Thing in the Family"!

Perfect fun to read.  A comic story that doesn't take itself too seriously, it has some chuckles, a fight scene, and a little bit of comic book destruction. What else could a kid ask for in a comic book.

Trivia note: The writer of this story, Kupperberg has an extensive video archive and is known as an expert on TV history, particularly the history of TV comedy.

A few of the more Memorable Ads From This Issue

Click Energized Spider-man for larger image
Found this commercial for Energized Spider-man!

Check out the modern day Spider-man Toys


Man would this have been cool to own. If memory serves me correctly mom must have thought this cost too much. Spider-man Energized actually had a light, pulled things with his web, and had an awesome helicopter. Man I was deprived!

NBC cartoon promo
 1978 Fantastic Four Intro

Notice the Fantastic Four cartoon in the ad, and Godzilla who also had his own Marvel Comic that year. Godzilla was roughing it up with the entire Marvel Universe back then and in Godzilla #20 the Fantastic Four were seen on the cover pounding away at Godzilla.

The Bullpen Bulletins
In this one Stan Lee talks about the Japan Spider-man TV show. Notice another ad for the Fantastic Four cartoon with Herbie replacing the Human Torch.