I’ve realized while sampling a wide range of 1960s-era Marvel Comics that my interest only extends to the Stan Lee era. After the first 60 or so issues of each, main title, Stan “The Man” started to pass the reins to his old assistants, such as Roy Thomas. Perhaps writers such as Thomas became markedly better later in their career. In reading a batch of Thomas’s run on “The Avengers,” there wasn’t much that left me interested in exploring late 1960s and early 1970s Marvel much deeper.
This Masterworks volume contains the “Kree-Skrull” war, a multi-part saga that still gets referenced quite a bit. It does get points for being related to a story from all the way back in “Fantastic Four” #2. Given the years of reading hype, I assumed that it would be stellar, but I found the writing painful at times to slog through. There were flashes of interesting ideas and the later couple of issues in the saga were entertaining, but it seemed too little too late.
The Neal Adams art is fantastic, when he was able to draw a given issue. Adams had problems meeting his deadlines and the fill-in art in his place by Sal Buscema is only serviceable by comparison. A young Barry Windsor-Smith provides the rest of the art in this volume and one can tell that he would be a rising star. Despite the art, I can’t recommend much more than finding this chapter in Marvel history on a deep discount table.