Chasing the Cool Kids

Back in the 1970s Marvel Comics was trying to chase an audience beyond the typical comic reader which was comprised chiefly of seven to twelve year old boys. Somebody thought a rock album based on their most popular character would be far out and would go a long way towards attracting new, hipper and happening audience to the Mighty Marvel Universe. Comics were sophisticated! They weren’t just for kids.

My brother had this album, and while we nearly wore it out listening to it repeatedly, it was bad. The story and John Romita’s artwork that adorned the album cover and a fold-out spread were great, but the songs were terrible. Professional song writers churned out some ditties and studio musicians played them, but it was sort of cringe inducing like The Osmonds. There was never going to be a world tour or even a Grammy Award. Kids were not going to line up for tickets.

Still, people at Marvel thought the album rocked and tried to chase down the head shop crowd with a huge color spread in this 1973 issue of Creem.

Creem April 1973I was aware of Creem, but I had never seen this particular issue before a friend of mine snagged it from an eBay seller. The layout was beautiful within, but it was another one of those “comics are really cool and you should read them” articles that are supposed to bring in new readers. Being that comics went for 20¢ back then and could be found on newsstands, it was an easier proposition. Maybe the big spread in Creem would bring in a fresh crop of readers!

Judging from the ads in that issue of Creem, it would appear their readers had other concerns.

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2 Responses to Chasing the Cool Kids

  1. Old NFO says:

    I don’t remember that one, but those ads… WOW!

  2. Joe says:

    Print was king and there was so much of it, that a lot of it flew under the radar.

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