Strange Tales #123:The Birth Of The Beetle

Review By:


The first story I am reviewing from Strange Tales #123 is “The Birth Of the Beetle” ,  The title given to the human torch feature; but for the first time in a while, equal featuring The Thing! but more than just that, this tale was illustrated by Carl Burgos, whom created the original golden age Human Torch! while this one is not the same character  there is something to be said for him illustrating one of his tales.  but is a classic Illustrated  heroic team ups, and a new foe named the beetle enough to make this comic book worth the read? I hope to address my thoughts on that below in my comic book review.


On more panels than not, I feel that this issue was well drawn, and paced;  Johnny storm as well as the human torch looked great, and the thing also was quite lovable (although not as good as Jack Kirby does the thing).  The design and look of the Beetle is what got me the most, from his suction cup fingers, to his wings,  he just seemed to look menacing, and his powers combined with his knowledge all seemed to work quite well together.

The panel I decided to includes shows the battle up close with the torch not far behind, while a highway is seen far below in the background, giving  a scene to the height of the battle

Originally & Continuity

the real world and contempory nature of marvel had the human torch chasing the bettle past the site of the 1964 New York world’s Fair.

Self made menaces taking after creatures of the animal kingdom is nothing new; even with the ongoing string of robberies or the feeling of needing to top a super hero.  We have seen this several times so far, yet it seems to not get old, perhaps due to the  uniqueness many of this characters exhibit from each other.  The beetle’s enhanced strength making the rest of his suit possible, seems to be just one such example;  and one that in the issue did not seem to suffer power bloat.

This issue however offers little in terms of tie in’s with other titles before it, something that as been quite common in the last several reviews.

Characters & Development

The main development in this issue, is though reinforcing things that we already know, such as reminding us of the The Yancy Street Gang, and Aunt Petunia. two things important to our guest star this issue. Doris Evans  also got to reappear, and reinforce her feelings – in a way at least – about Johnny Storm being the human torch.  Quite an interesting dynamic I think, the girlfriend of a super-hero wishing he was just normal.

The Story

While never giving a overwhelming feeling of significant, this story was quite an enjoyable read, and almost a little lighter than some of the stories as of late. it felt like a brake, and was a tale i enjoyed reading; having both good dialogue, and scene of brotherhood between the Thing and The Human Torch.

Book Information:
Cover Date: Aug 1964
Read At:
  • Stan Lee
  • Carl Burgos
  • Dick Ayers
  • Sam Rosen
Review Ratings:
Character And Development&#9733&#9733&#9733&#9734&#9734&#9734
Originality And Continuity&#9733&#9733&#9733½&#9734&#9734
Locations And Things:
  • New York World’s Fair






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