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Essential Warlock, Vol. 1

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Part super-hero spectacle and part spiritual allegory, Adam Warlock must struggle with his inner demons even as he strives to oppose such dreadful threats as the Man-Beast, the Magus and Thanos of Titan! Collecting MARVEL PREMIERE #1-2, WARLOCK (1972) #1-15, INCREDIBLE HULK (1968) #176-178, STRANGE TALES (1951) #178-181, MARVEL TEAM-UP (1972) #55 and ANNUAL #2, and AVENGER Part super-hero spectacle and part spiritual allegory, Adam Warlock must struggle with his inner demons even as he strives to oppose such dreadful threats as the Man-Beast, the Magus and Thanos of Titan! Collecting MARVEL PREMIERE #1-2, WARLOCK (1972) #1-15, INCREDIBLE HULK (1968) #176-178, STRANGE TALES (1951) #178-181, MARVEL TEAM-UP (1972) #55 and ANNUAL #2, and AVENGERS ANNUAL (1967) #7.


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Part super-hero spectacle and part spiritual allegory, Adam Warlock must struggle with his inner demons even as he strives to oppose such dreadful threats as the Man-Beast, the Magus and Thanos of Titan! Collecting MARVEL PREMIERE #1-2, WARLOCK (1972) #1-15, INCREDIBLE HULK (1968) #176-178, STRANGE TALES (1951) #178-181, MARVEL TEAM-UP (1972) #55 and ANNUAL #2, and AVENGER Part super-hero spectacle and part spiritual allegory, Adam Warlock must struggle with his inner demons even as he strives to oppose such dreadful threats as the Man-Beast, the Magus and Thanos of Titan! Collecting MARVEL PREMIERE #1-2, WARLOCK (1972) #1-15, INCREDIBLE HULK (1968) #176-178, STRANGE TALES (1951) #178-181, MARVEL TEAM-UP (1972) #55 and ANNUAL #2, and AVENGERS ANNUAL (1967) #7.

30 review for Essential Warlock, Vol. 1

  1. 5 out of 5

    Mark

    My all time favourite comic arc. The Warlock Epic. Forget "Him" and all the FF stuff. Jump straight into Strange Tales 178 and the first major work of Vietnam vet and Sci-Fi buff Jim Starlin. Marvel at the way he turns a minor, silly, one-dimensional character from Counter Earth into a noble, tortured symbol of the human condition - at once capable of great heroism and at the same time, capable of great atrocities. The dialogue was way ahead of its time, the art stupendous, capturing the sheer c My all time favourite comic arc. The Warlock Epic. Forget "Him" and all the FF stuff. Jump straight into Strange Tales 178 and the first major work of Vietnam vet and Sci-Fi buff Jim Starlin. Marvel at the way he turns a minor, silly, one-dimensional character from Counter Earth into a noble, tortured symbol of the human condition - at once capable of great heroism and at the same time, capable of great atrocities. The dialogue was way ahead of its time, the art stupendous, capturing the sheer cosmic scale of what Starlin envisioned. The series introduced a panoply of unforgettable characters. Pip The Troll, the rascally, good for nothing smuggler - ripped off countless times in the interim. The gorgeous Gamora - the deadliest (and sexiest) woman in the whole galaxy, presaging bad girl comics by twenty years. The In-Betweener. The Magus - a magnificent villain. And it reintroduced Thanos, the slave of mistress death (and soon to be the major villain in the forthcoming blockbuster "Avengers Assemble 2"). And the climax, between Warlock, the Avengers and Thanos is one of the most unforgettable fights in comic history. I cried at the end (inside of course - big boys don't cry). Thanos stick - and he nearly wins. Everyone saw the potential of comics in 1986, but Starlin saw it much earlier - comics as literature. Comics as epic. Comic as grand theatre. Ignore everyhing else I've reviewed - go out and buy this. It is terrific value for money and it has absolutely everything you could want in two hundred odd pages.

  2. 4 out of 5

    Rick

    Many of the Marvel comics of the 70s featured metaphysical concepts and characters. While most of these efforts failed, Jim Starlin's Warlock melded these ideas within the worlds of prose science fiction and the Marvel universe. The Essential Warlock Volume 1 collects all these star-spanning stories. Starlin's vision, elevate Warlock from a forgettable, ill-defined character (the previous mediocre adventures are also included in this volume) into a fascinating exploration of good vs evil, past v Many of the Marvel comics of the 70s featured metaphysical concepts and characters. While most of these efforts failed, Jim Starlin's Warlock melded these ideas within the worlds of prose science fiction and the Marvel universe. The Essential Warlock Volume 1 collects all these star-spanning stories. Starlin's vision, elevate Warlock from a forgettable, ill-defined character (the previous mediocre adventures are also included in this volume) into a fascinating exploration of good vs evil, past vs future, and love vs hate, all along a backdrop of space opera and intergalactic religious wars. Some heady stuff for a seventies Marvel comic. Starlin's art and writing, though clunky at first, evolve alongside the ambitious story. The one downside to this collection, beyond the often terrible stories that precedes the good stuff, is that the black and white remove some of the extra worldiness of the work. Seemingly inspired by Kirby's Fourth World, Starlin's magnificent Warlock saga emerged as one of the finest comics of the decade.

  3. 5 out of 5

    ***Dave Hill

    This black and white collection of all of the in-title appearances of Adam Warlock, including the classic last few cross-over Annual appearences -- is trippy in the extreme. Originally in the early 70s he was the hippy super-hero Jesus figure of Counter-Earth, fighting the corrupting evil of the Man-Beast at the best of the High Evolutionary. Yeah, it's as zany as it sounds. But it got even more wild, once Jim Starlin got hold of him and starting running him through his cosmic paces in deep spac This black and white collection of all of the in-title appearances of Adam Warlock, including the classic last few cross-over Annual appearences -- is trippy in the extreme. Originally in the early 70s he was the hippy super-hero Jesus figure of Counter-Earth, fighting the corrupting evil of the Man-Beast at the best of the High Evolutionary. Yeah, it's as zany as it sounds. But it got even more wild, once Jim Starlin got hold of him and starting running him through his cosmic paces in deep space against his mad other self, the Magus, the Universal Church of Truth, and, ultimately, Thanos of Titan. Along the way we also pick up a couple of other characters in the saga, including Pip the Troll and now-member of the Guardians of the Galaxy, Gamora the Assassin. It's wild, crazy, psychodelic psycho-drama, , and some truly great comics to boot. For sheer audacity, richness of ideas, and faboo Starlin writing and art alongside the efforts of authorial luminaries like Roy Thomas, Gerry Conway, and Bill Mantlo, this one is a true classic.

  4. 4 out of 5

    Rick

    This volume illustrates the problem with these omnibus collections. The second half of this volume is among the best stuff from Marvel during the 1970s, while the first half suffers from mediocre writing with unfulfilled potential. It was the arrival of Starlin that helped realize that potential and the second half of this volume shows that. Starlin's take on the character is nothing short of inspired and brilliant. This volume is also a great primer for the anyone interested in getting to know This volume illustrates the problem with these omnibus collections. The second half of this volume is among the best stuff from Marvel during the 1970s, while the first half suffers from mediocre writing with unfulfilled potential. It was the arrival of Starlin that helped realize that potential and the second half of this volume shows that. Starlin's take on the character is nothing short of inspired and brilliant. This volume is also a great primer for the anyone interested in getting to know more about the Avengers' villain Thanos.

  5. 4 out of 5

    Eamonn Murphy

    Adam Warlock is one of those secondary Marvel characters that talented people sometimes get a chance to play with, often with great results. Originally named Him and created in Fantastic Four # 66-67 by some mad scientists, Him vanished for a while after killing his creators and then reappeared to fight a certain Asgardian in Mighty Thor # 166. Him had decided he needed a Her for a companion and chose Sif, Thor’s girl-friend. The Thunder God was miffed and gave him a sound thrashing. After this Adam Warlock is one of those secondary Marvel characters that talented people sometimes get a chance to play with, often with great results. Originally named Him and created in Fantastic Four # 66-67 by some mad scientists, Him vanished for a while after killing his creators and then reappeared to fight a certain Asgardian in Mighty Thor # 166. Him had decided he needed a Her for a companion and chose Sif, Thor’s girl-friend. The Thunder God was miffed and gave him a sound thrashing. After this defeat, Him retreated into his cocoon and didn’t re-emerge until Amazing Adventures # 1 which is the issue that kicks off this collection. Perhaps it was the name Him, with a capital H, that inspired Roy Thomas to get all biblical with the character. The story goes like this: the High Evolutionary, having evolved into a god-like being in one of those grand metamorphoses that were all the rage in the seventies, decided to make a better Earth with better men. On the far side of the Sun, he made Counter-Earth and then evolved life on it at a speeded-up rate. This was tiring and he fell asleep at a crucial point. His old nemesis, the Man-Beast, evolved from a wolf way back in Mighty Thor # 135, ruined his plans out of pure spite. Devilishly, he introduced hatred and violence into the soul of man and so the old Earth’s history was repeated, albeit without super-heroes as Man-Beast didn’t want any competition. Him had befriended the High Evolutionary and so set out to act as the new Earth’s saviour and restore the dream, albeit with more fisticuffs than the biblical messiah used as this is, after all, an action comic. It all started pretty well, with Roy Thomas scripting and Gil Kane drawing, but it soon lost its way under lesser talents. To be fair, this was a tricky theme, especially in the USA where Christianity is very strong. Although Adam Warlock got his own mag after a couple of issues it only lasted for eight and the story had to be wound up in The Incredible Hulk # 176-178. It wasn’t a bad story and it set the scene for greater things to follow. Jim Starlin took over the character with Strange Tales # 178 and really followed on with the quasi-religious theme. Adam Warlock encounters an evil empire of religious fanatics devoted to a Man-God called the Magus. He makes it his mission to topple the Church of Universal Truth and defeat its leader. This gets complicated. As there are a number of surprises along the way, I will not spoil the plot for any comic fans who haven’t read it yet. Suffice to say that it’s all very cosmic and one of the greatest epics in the history of graphic storytelling. Jim Starlin is a brilliant artist and an even better writer. The Magus epic was almost bound to be followed by a sense of anti-climax but not so. True, there is a brief interregnum of quieter tales, including a comedy troll yarn, but then another cosmic episode occurs, tightly linked to the preceding stuff. Again, however, Adam Warlock couldn’t sustain his own mag and his tale concludes in those of other heroes. There are some stories any comic fan worth his salt should have read, classics of the genre. ‘Watchmen’, Kirby’s ‘Fourth World’ stuff, Alan Moore’s ‘Swamp Thing’, the ‘Dark Knight’ stories of Batman, and Jim Starlin’s ‘Adam Warlock’. Therefore this volume really is… Essential! Eamonn Murphy This review first appeared at https://www.sfcrowsnest.info/

  6. 4 out of 5

    Rexhurne

    I agree with most reviews here. The start of the volume is not worth reading, but the stuff from issue 9 onward is some of the best marvelcomics stuff from the 70s era i did read. With the start of issue 9 comes a 4 page summery of what came before, and that's all you need honestly. To bad a lot of people will get turned off before they reach it. It fascinates me how early the famous infinity war saga from the 90's and the (inner) workings of the soul stone are set up here. Even the fact that th I agree with most reviews here. The start of the volume is not worth reading, but the stuff from issue 9 onward is some of the best marvelcomics stuff from the 70s era i did read. With the start of issue 9 comes a 4 page summery of what came before, and that's all you need honestly. To bad a lot of people will get turned off before they reach it. It fascinates me how early the famous infinity war saga from the 90's and the (inner) workings of the soul stone are set up here. Even the fact that the gem is one of the six infinity gems is mentioned, i always thought those would enter the marvel universe much later in time. The philosophical undertones of Thanos relationship with dead, and the inner thoughts of Warlock as a champion of life were really interesting. The difference and conflict between life and death is the theme here. The perfect space opera with lot of exitcement and drama. The art is amazing for it's time, it has a distinct style that i like. The dialogue is suprisingly good for a 70's comic. I wasn't that impressed with Starlin's captain marvel stories, but this made me a fan of his work.

  7. 4 out of 5

    James

    In the early days of Marvel's Essential volumes series, the newsprint paper was really dark and grainy, and the reproductions were second rate at best. I'm happy to report that things have changed for the better, and the Warlock volume (which I would say is truly essential) looks a lot better, and in some ways (I think) looks better in black and white than it would in color (though I think I would probably buy a color volume too). My lone cavil with this particular edition is that it omits the cha In the early days of Marvel's Essential volumes series, the newsprint paper was really dark and grainy, and the reproductions were second rate at best. I'm happy to report that things have changed for the better, and the Warlock volume (which I would say is truly essential) looks a lot better, and in some ways (I think) looks better in black and white than it would in color (though I think I would probably buy a color volume too). My lone cavil with this particular edition is that it omits the character's very first appearance in Thor--but it has everything else, including the Ron Goulart issue (which I'm pretty sure was the first one I ever got my hands on as a kid, and it was a back issue at that time, but I remember thinking, hey! Ron Goulart!), and the glorious Gil Kane work from the earliest days of the character (I can't say enough good things about the late, great Gil Kane), and of course, the mind-blowing art and story of Jim Starlin, at his peak. I'm way behind on these Marvel Essentials, though, and I see that there are a number of volumes (like, oh, the Thor volume where Warlock first appears as "Him") that are already out of print, like so many of Marvel's trades. I'd better get on that soon.

  8. 5 out of 5

    Fraser Sherman

    A tricky one to review because it includes two different Warlock series. The first run took an obscure Silver Age footnote, the lab-created entity Him, and turns him into a Christ-allegory: a super-scientist takes six hours to create Counter-Earth, a world that will be just like our own but devoid of evil, hate and violence. A previous creation, the Man-Beast, corrupts Counter-Earth but Him—now renamed Adam Warlock—is ready to sacrifice himself to bring it salvation. I wouldn't say it's good, bu A tricky one to review because it includes two different Warlock series. The first run took an obscure Silver Age footnote, the lab-created entity Him, and turns him into a Christ-allegory: a super-scientist takes six hours to create Counter-Earth, a world that will be just like our own but devoid of evil, hate and violence. A previous creation, the Man-Beast, corrupts Counter-Earth but Him—now renamed Adam Warlock—is ready to sacrifice himself to bring it salvation. I wouldn't say it's good, but it's a heck of an interesting experiment. I'd probably give it three stars with a YMMV warning. Then comes the really good stuff, a second Warlock series in which Jim Starlin has Adam fighting his own counterpart, the Magus. Starlin tackles religion, freedom and other issues in a way that nobody else did (and few people have done it as well since) and ends with some breathtaking dramatic stuff. It easily justifies a five-star rating as far as I'm concerned.

  9. 5 out of 5

    Solitairerose

    Why three stars? I have be blunt, the first half of the book reprinting the early 70's stories became utterly unreadable. A ham fisted Jesus analogy complete with cliche followers and a mutated wolf as the Satan of a world evolved in minutes that was a near exact replica of Earth? The whole thing was mess until Jim Starlin showed up and revamped the character into a cosmic adventurer. Once Starlin shows up on the scene, the book becomes a brilliant mix of underground comix sensibility, SF/Fantasy Why three stars? I have be blunt, the first half of the book reprinting the early 70's stories became utterly unreadable. A ham fisted Jesus analogy complete with cliche followers and a mutated wolf as the Satan of a world evolved in minutes that was a near exact replica of Earth? The whole thing was mess until Jim Starlin showed up and revamped the character into a cosmic adventurer. Once Starlin shows up on the scene, the book becomes a brilliant mix of underground comix sensibility, SF/Fantasy and Marvel at its best. A true classic, but really, when you buy it, skip the Gil Kane/Roy Thomas stuff and jump straight to Starlin.

  10. 4 out of 5

    Sean Brennan

    The story of Adam Warlock can be broken down into two very different parts. Firstly we have his origin by The High Evolutionary and his subsequent mission to restore order and stability to the quite ludicrous counter earth, mostly drawn by Kane and written by a trio of writers who did not know what to do with the character or in what direction he should advance. Very poor. Then along comes Jim Starlin who transforms who uses Warlock as part of his Thanos crossover event, which is magnificent, whic The story of Adam Warlock can be broken down into two very different parts. Firstly we have his origin by The High Evolutionary and his subsequent mission to restore order and stability to the quite ludicrous counter earth, mostly drawn by Kane and written by a trio of writers who did not know what to do with the character or in what direction he should advance. Very poor. Then along comes Jim Starlin who transforms who uses Warlock as part of his Thanos crossover event, which is magnificent, which evolved the comic book into an adult space opera which is qite simply awesome.

  11. 4 out of 5

    Philip

    The first half of the book isn't very good. It's filled with ham-fisted religious symbolism layered over stock superhero fights. (Although the issues with art by Gil Kane look fantastic.) But in the second half, Jim Starlin takes over, and the story gets a lot better. It's a lot more complex and nuanced than was typical of superhero comics of the time. Great to have these stories collected. The first half of the book isn't very good. It's filled with ham-fisted religious symbolism layered over stock superhero fights. (Although the issues with art by Gil Kane look fantastic.) But in the second half, Jim Starlin takes over, and the story gets a lot better. It's a lot more complex and nuanced than was typical of superhero comics of the time. Great to have these stories collected.

  12. 4 out of 5

    Patrick Hudson

    I'm reviewing this one issue-by-issue (well, almost) on my blog: http://philosophicalasides.blogspot.c... I'm reviewing this one issue-by-issue (well, almost) on my blog: http://philosophicalasides.blogspot.c...

  13. 5 out of 5

    Joshua

    Jim Starlin could both write and draw. His Warlock stories are intermittently fun, but they're still just above average for mid-'70s Marvel nonsense. I didn't like the pre-Starlin stories at all. Jim Starlin could both write and draw. His Warlock stories are intermittently fun, but they're still just above average for mid-'70s Marvel nonsense. I didn't like the pre-Starlin stories at all.

  14. 5 out of 5

    Mitch Romig

    Three stars for the pre-Starlin material, five stars for the Starlin stuff. The collection is about half and half.

  15. 4 out of 5

    Lawrence

    http://gnomeship.blogspot.com/2012/10... http://gnomeship.blogspot.com/2012/10...

  16. 4 out of 5

    Ricky

  17. 4 out of 5

    Katie Finnell

  18. 4 out of 5

    Alex Holt

  19. 4 out of 5

    Nick ComicBookGuy

  20. 4 out of 5

    aaron below

  21. 4 out of 5

    Michael

  22. 4 out of 5

    Craig

  23. 5 out of 5

    Christopher Luke

  24. 4 out of 5

    Fausto Rodríguez

  25. 5 out of 5

    Mike Clooney

  26. 5 out of 5

    Zack

  27. 4 out of 5

    Javier

  28. 5 out of 5

    Steven Davich

  29. 4 out of 5

    Mark

  30. 5 out of 5

    Drewr15

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