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Marvel Premiere #26: Review

Nov 1975
Bill Mantlo, George Tuska

Story Name:

The Games of Raging Gods

Review & Comments

2.5 stars

Marvel Premiere #26 Review by (April 28, 2021)

Review: First solo adventure for the mighty Hercules in this tryout comic gauged to see if there was any interest among readers; the answer was apparently “no” as Herc’s next solo adventure was seven years later in the classic HERCULES: PRINCE OF POWER by Bob Layton. It’s not hard to see why this failed: there is nothing special about any of it. Pretty unimaginative story by Bill Mantlo. Unexceptional art by George Tuska. Hero and villain are almost the same loud and blustery character, shouting at each other in a lengthy but not creative battle scene. Hero is a big strong guy who speaks in the same phony old English as Thor but without a dual identity, special weapon, and large supporting cast that made Thor a big hit. It wasn’t until Bob Layton placed a more boisterous and fun-loving version of Herc in a futuristic sci-fi setting that allowed a great deal of humor to come out that Herc finally got the attention of readers.

Comments: Story takes place between CHAMPIONS #1 and 2. Typhon first appeared in AVENGERS #49-50; this is his second appearance. Richard Fenster was introduced in CHAMPIONS #1; this is his only appearance outside that title. Only appearance of Cylla.


Synopsis / Summary / Plot

Marvel Premiere #26 Synopsis by Peter Silvestro

Hercules and his publicist Richard Fenster are driving along the California coast when they come upon a crew fighting a wildfire; Herc rescues the trapped firefighters then creates a firebreak by swinging a burning tree in an arc. Herc and Richard resume their journey…

…watched by the villains Typhon the Titan and the witch Cylla. Typhon had tried to overthrow Zeus but he was defeated by Hercules with the help of the Avengers. He was banished to the pit of Hades where he met Cylla, who also has a grudge against Hercules over a nasty breakup. She is free to leave the pit and takes him with her; they go to the Temple of Prometheus where Typhon seeks to recover his battle axe. Taking it from a burning brazier sears it to his hand and it can only be removed by the blood of his worst enemy, according to Cylla. They then descended to Earth, causing the wildfire seen earlier….

The villains run Richard’s car off the road and into the ocean; Herc manages to escape, bringing Richard with him. Herc and his Titan enemy fight, while the witch causes vines to sprout from the ground trapping Hercules. But Typhon resents her interference, causing her to want vengeance against him too. Richard, meanwhile, has recovered from his faint and helps Herc by bashing Cylla over the head with a big stick. The two mighty combatants plunge into the ocean—and Herc delivers the final blow to Typhus, who yields. But a bit of Typhon’s blood drips on his hand and the axe is suddenly released; Cylla confirms that Typhon was his own worst enemy. Then Zeus arrives to transport the villains back to Hades, leaving Herc and Richard to hitchhike to their destination….

George Tuska
Vince Colletta
Irene Vartanoff
Jack Kirby (Cover Penciler)
Vince Colletta (Cover Inker)
? (Cover Colorist)


Listed in Alphabetical Order.

Plus: Richard Fenster, Typhon.

> Marvel Premiere: Book info and issue index

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