MCP #3 – The Thing

Marvel Comics Presents #3 (The Thing)
“The Measure of a Man!”
By Al Milgrom
Letters – Jim Novak
Colors – Greg Wright
Assistant Edits – Michael Rockwitz
Edits – Terry Kavanagh
Chief – Tom DeFalco

Welcome back to the Milgrom “anchor” chapter… and, y’all know what that means: more Fear Bug!  This, as far as I can tell, is the penultimate chapter of Fear Buggin’… so, uh, let’s enjoy (?) it while it lasts, eh?

We open with Ben Grimm walkin’ down the street… freakin’ everybody out.  Ya see, this is following his second run-in with cosmic rays (editor’s note missing) that left him far more “spiky” than his initial dose.  So, what we’re getting at here is, he’s even uglier to the folks about town.  He tires of the gawking and decides to give the normies an eyeful.  He tears his trenchcoat off and shows off his new lumpy bod in all its glory!  It’s at this point that our new-ish friend, the Fear Bug, has spied his next target.  Just like with the prior two chapters, we get the “scanning” bit… and the quick ‘n dirty on the character in question.

Ben is suddenly overcome with weird feelings… likely predicated in, ya know, fear.  People run from him, though… honestly, I can’t really blame them.  Dude did just tear off his clothes while shouting in their direction.  Ben collapses by some water, and notes that his reflection has changed a bit.  His spikyness has dulled down to his “normal” Thing look… but, much to his disappointment, that’s where the transformation stops.

He suddenly sees himself surrounded by generic monsters… they all tell him how great it is to be a monster… how he can be the King of Monsters (sorry, Godzilla).  Ben flips out… declaring that he is not an animal monster, he’s a man.  To this, the Fear Eater makes a bit of a pervy face, and changes the monsters to beautiful people.

These beautiful people proceed to pounce on Ben, and beat the hell out of him.  This actually manages to snap our hero back to reality.  He comes to the realization that while he may look like a monster… underneath it all, he’s still a man.

Welp, that’s all the Fear Bug needed to hear before he skidoo’s outta Ben’s craggy hide.  If he doesn’t find some fear to eat soon, poor little bugger’s gonna starve!

Much as I love the Thing (who doesn’t?), this was a pretty flat story.  Then again, “Milgrom Corner” has been pretty flat overall, hasn’t it?

I mean, what is there to say here?  Ben Grimm learns, for the million-and-oneth time, that he’s still a man underneath his rocky shell.  Um… that’s really all we got.  Nothin’ new, nothin’ novel… at least it looked nice.  Would’a been great if they included a footnote to exactly when Ben got that second dose of cosmic rays though.

Sorry gang, this one was just sorta “there”.

Tomorrow: The Wrap-Up and Poll!

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