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CSBG Archive

When We First Met #25

Each day in June you’ll get an entry showing you the first appearance of seemingly minor characters, phrases, objects or events that later became notable parts of comic book lore. Not major stuff like “the first appearance of Superman,” but rather, “the first time someone said, ‘Avengers Assemble!'” or “the first appearance of Batman’s giant penny” or “the first appearance of Alfred Pennyworth” or “the first time Spider-Man’s face was shown half-Spidey/half-Peter.” Stuff like that. Here is an archive of what I’ve featured so far.

Today is a day of births!


Franklin Richards’ birth is too famous for this bit. So here are some slightly less celebrated comic book births…

First appearance/birth of Aquababy

Even before there was Franklin Richards, there was Aquababy!

1965’s Aquaman #23 is a weird comic book. In the beginning of the issue, we learn that Mera is pregnant…

Aquaman and Aqualad then go off on a quest to find a serum that will save Mera and the baby…

By the middle of the issue, Mera gives birth (this is all in one issue!)…

Things get weird after this (when Aquababy’s powers manifest), but that’s another story!

First appearance/birth of Luna

Crystal and Quicksilver’s baby had a fairly drama-free delivery in 1982’s Fantastic Four #240 (it is good to know that both Reed Richards and Stephen Strange – who delivered Scarlet Witch’s babies – can deliver babies)…


First appearance/birth of Aleea Strange

The 1990 three-book Adam Strange mini-series was not poorly written in a vacuum, but as an Adam Strange story it really did not work (Mark Waid later did an absolutely brilliant job of explaining it all away in the pages of JLA).

In any event, a doctor from Earth gets stuck on Rann and is helping Alanna give birth along with Alanna’s mother…

Adam (who was about to go off and do hero stuff when he realizes his place is with Alanna) returns only to find bad news…

Alanna’s mom seems way too serene. I guess it could be shock.

Feel free to send in ideas for future debuts I should feature here to bcronin@comicbookresources.com!


Things get weird after this

Wait…things “GET” weird? I’d say they started off pretty weird already! :D

Wait…things “GET” weird? I’d say they started off pretty weird already!

That’s how weird things get! It makes what came before it seem normal!

Much as I like Alan Moore and, to a lesser extent, Richard Bruning, the attempt to deconstruct Adam Strange was a horribly misguided one in retrospect.

Much as I like Alan Moore and, to a lesser extent, Richard Bruning, the attempt to deconstruct Adam Strange was a horribly misguided one in retrospect.

I think it was a horribly misguided idea as it was happening, even.

But yeah, in retrospect it looks even worse. Moore’s idea was bad, but Bruning just took it to a whole other level of bad.

And again, though, each story, in and of itself, was well told (Moore’s more so than Bruning’s, but Bruning did a good job, storytelling-wise, as well), it was just that the basic idea to do it with Adam Strange was really poor.

Who did the artwork on the Adam Strange story?

interesting to learn that Mera had to have a serum to be able to give birth to aqua baby and its the reason aquaman was also born. plus always wondered when Luna arrived in the marvel universe.

Who did the artwork on the Adam Strange story?

Adam Kubert doing colors over his brother Andy pencils (and presumably “finishing” Andy’s pencils in the process).

And who was the writer? I never heard of this Adam Strange mini-series, is it that bad??

The aforementioned Richard Bruning.

It is not a bad series if you either:

A. Don’t like Adam Strange or

B. Don’t know anything about Adam Strange

It’s a well-told riff on the Genesis tale, but boy, it does not work as an Adam Strange story at all.

I feel bad saying it, because I really do like Richard Bruning’s work, but hey, in this case, the guy who first screwed up was Alan freakin’ Moore, and we all know he is an amazing writer, so Bruning following in Moore’s missteps is easy to forgive.

And what´s Moore conection to the story?

In the mini-series, Bruning is following up a bit Moore introduced in one of his later issues of Swamp Thing. He reveals that Adam Strange was brought to Rann because the race is infertile and he is basically intended to be a breeder for their race. While Moore wrote it well, it was a really bad idea.

Man, I am loving that Aquaman art. is that Nick Cardy?


Thanks Brian, I only read the first and the second Alan Morre´s Swamp Thing TPB.

Bernard the Poet

June 24, 2011 at 4:39 pm

As someone who had never read an Adam Strange story prior to the Swamp Thing, I thought the Rann/Thanagar story was excellent – and I really enjoyed Bruning’s mini-series.

So in a roundabout way, I suppose I’m agreeing with Brian.

How did Waid ret-con it?

Is anyone else puzzled by Mera’s ability to drink a serum out of an open flask underwater? Shouldn’t it dilute, or flow awy, or something?

Is it wrong that I feel worse for the little fish than I did when Aquababy died?

Maybe Moore should have given Strange a telepathic dog, and drawn him like Don Johnson????

It’s funny that back then not even Mera was on a first-name basis with Aquaman.

Agree with Bernard. As an Adam Strange fan, I must say that I loved Alan Moore´s vision of AS. I think it´s one of his best ST stories, maybe because it was the “first” time that a english “invader” introduced a DC silver age character in an adult-themed comic (well, we didn´t know at that time that it was adult-themed, but…).These ST stories were published here in Brazil around 89/90, a very fertile DC moment even here in South America, the post-Crisis (Killing Joke, Grant, Neil, the Prestige format mini-series of forgotten characters). And Bruning mini-series is very well plotted. Maybe it was just a golden adolescence moment, to suddenly discover what was DC Comics past, but, wow, I love it until now. I just don´t know what was Waid´s retcon. Someone?

One thing I noticed in the Aquaman pages is Mera’s belly bulge, the sign of her pregnancy, is never shown. Was that considered taboo back then?

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