Topic: Comic Book History
...was known by many names during the years. It was known as Timely Comics, Atlas Comics, and later as Marvel Comics! Yes, that Marvel Comics!
Martin actually had several different companies, as he was a magazine publisher, but it was the comic book titled 'Marvel Comics" #1, (pictured below), that was his first entry in the Comics World in 1939!
Martin was the Editor of this issue, and other contributors were names that would become well known in the industry: Bill Everett, Carl Burgos, Frank Paul, Paul Gustavson, Ben Thompson, Ray Gill, and Fred Schwab.
You'll notice a few names that aren't listed there, that I blog about quite a bit: Joe Simon, Jack Kirby, and Stan Lee.
Joe and Jack came in later as a team, and Stan came on board soon after that.
Comic characters that are well known to this day from this first issue are: The Sub-Mariner and the Human Torch, (not the FF's Torch). There are other versions of the characters with the same name of Ka-Zar and The Angel.
Martin had been born in 1908. He was a salesperson for a publisher, and then a joint owner in another publishing company, before starting his own magazine company in 1933.
Martin contracted with newly formed comic book packager Funnies Inc in 1939 to supply pages for a test comic book, as Superman had started in 1938 in Action Comics, and everyone was trying to get into that new publishing field of superheroes!
Martin had two hits in his first comic, with Sub-Mariner and the Human Torch. In 1941 Captain America was added to his publishing empire and the 'Big Three' of Subby, Torch & Cap enjoyed a good sales run until the end of WWII.
Even though the first comic was 'Marvel Comics', Martin's company was considered to be called 'Timely Comics'.
This name lasted until the end of the Golden Age of Comics circa 1949.
In 1951 Martin started using the Atlas Globe Logo for his comics that were printed on the covers by his multiple companies, which caused those comics to be called 'Atlas Comics'.
'Atlas Comics' were big sellers in the HoRRoR and MoNSTer days of the 1950's until the Comic Code Authority (CCA) came into being, and made publishing such comics not viable.
By 1957, Atlas Comics had 'imploded', and Martin centered on his mens' magazines and other publications, leaving his now dwindled down comics publishing empire to his relative Stan Lee to handle on a day to day basis.
It wasn't until 1961 that Stan along with Jack Kirby kick started the 'Marvel Age of Comics' with the first issue of the Fantastic Four.
The newly re-named Marvel Comics Group added several more superheroes into their anthology books, with co-creators Steve Ditko, Don Heck, and others.
(continued next column below the photo's text...)
Photos of Martin Goodman are not plentiful to say the least! For a man who brought us so many comics and magazines during the decades, his face is not widely known. Above is a photo during the 'Golden Age of Comics' era!
(... continued from bottom of first column)
Marvel Comics also added even more comic book titles in 1968 when Martin changed the distribution company that he had used since the 'implosion' in the late 1950's.
Martin sold his interest in the company to Perfect Film and Chemical Corporation in the Fall of 1968, staying on as publisher till 1972.Perfect Film, made other acquistions and thus changed their corporate name to Cadence Industries in 1973.
Shortly afterward Martin left in 1972, he felt that the new Cadence didn't keep their part of the sales agreement in purchasing Marvel from him, so he went back to publishing comics... the new line being called "Atlas Seaboard Comics".
That was a time when there really only were the Big Two in comics publishing, DC - National Periodicals, and Marvel Comics. The 'independent comics' publishers hadn't really started yet...
This new Atlas - Seaboard was a short -lived publishing attempt due to several internal changes and because of spotty newstand distribution.
Martin's publishing empire 'Magazine Management Company' had published many magazines. That will be a blog post for another time, as those mags included 'Stag', 'Male', 'Modern Love Stories', 'Sports Action' and a lot more!
Martin passed away June 6th, 1992. His contributions to the comics industry is not always noted in mainstream articles.
A good source of stories about Martin Goodman have been written in magazines like 'Alter Ego', which I recommend for comics history buffs!For those of you that are new to our blog today, we have an ongoing 'Comics Convention and Pop Culture Show' ourselves here at "Make It So Marketing Inc.", what with our daily blog posts and new listings of items for sale in our online store!
Thanks for reading this blog post today, and please join us again for more!
Above is a photo of Michael and Tina from the 2008 SDCC - San Diego Comic Con International. Click on that photo to see 'Our World'!
Each comic / comics book. Graphic Novels or magazine in our eBay Featured Store is individually graded by Michael, inventoried, priced, bagged and boarded, before being listed for sale!
We attend several Pop Culture Conventions and Comic Cons during the year to replenish our comic books and other pop culture inventory for resale!
If you don't see what you are looking for, feel free to email us a 'want list' and if in stock, we'll place it in our eBay Featured Store 'Just for You' to purchase!
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