“MORBIUS THE LIVING VAMPIRE” #1
PUBLISHER: Marvel Comics
WRITER: Vita Ayala
ARTIST: Marcelo Ferreira
COVER PRICE: $3.99
The 1970’s were a time of experimentation for Marvel Comics. Several characters who appeared during that decade have become even more popular: Wolverine with the new X-Men, The Punisher and Ghost Rider. A resurgence of popular monsters including Frankenstein’s Monster, Werewolf by Night, the Living Mummy, Man-Thing and of course, Dracula! With these monsters came a new cast of heroes and antiheroes such as Blade the Vampire Hunter/Killer and Morbius the Living Vampire!
Dr. Michael Morbius was once a Nobel Prize-winning researcher, with a rare blood disorder, but after trying to cure himself using vampire bat DNA, he became a living vampire! While he desperately tries to cure himself, he must feed on blood in order to survive.
First appearing in “The Amazing Spider-Man” #101 in Oct. 1971, created by writer Roy Thomas and designed by artist Gil Kane, the character originally started out as a villain. Due to his popularity the hero would go on to appear in many different comics, earning his first starring feature in “Adventure into Fear” #20, Feb.1974. With the 1990’s came the revival of the darker heroes like Dr. Strange and Ghost Rider, with Morbius to follow in his own short-lived title as part of the “Midnight Sons” series until 1995. Later in 2013, he would receive another very brief series (only 9 issues) by writer Joe Keatinge and artist Richard Elson.
Now as part of Marvel’s “Next Big Thing” for 2020, Morbius has risen again to feed on the blood of the guilty! Still struggling to find a cure for his vampirism, Morbius believes he is getting closer to the answer. Yet he still wrestles with his uncontrollable hunger for blood and the pain that comes with it. When Morbius comes across petty villain, The Melter, in an old warehouse in Brooklyn, he takes out his henchmen and also takes The Melter’s scientific equipment to be used for “worthier pursuits.” But when he tries out a new serum, he thinks it is working, but only for a moment and his pain and hunger return with more intensity. Meanwhile The Melter and his men, who are still alive, are approached by a mysterious (but familiar?) woman who offers to kill the vampire Morbius!
While I am excited for Morbius to finally get another shot at a new ongoing series, along with Ghost Rider, I am uncertain at just how long it will last. This coming year is full of even more Marvel reboots and relaunches, including the X-Men, Guardians of the Galaxy, Thor, Dr. Strange and Iron Man 2020. It seemed like only yesterday (actually it was last year) that Marvel gave us a “Fresh Start” in 2018 following 2017’s “Marvel Legacy”. In the last 5 years Marvel has given us a constant flow of reboots and relaunches, which are becoming a bit redundant as they don’t give readers much time to get to know these characters, both with new versions of old heroes (Amadeus Cho/Hulk) and new (often female) incarnations of older ones (Thor, Ironheart). Just as the “All-New, All-Different Marvel” came to pass in 2015, 2016 brought us Marvel NOW! With all sorts of new #1 issues to correct and re-correct their continuity. While a title may be able to last well into the teens, you can be sure that it won’t last long before the creative team at Marvel decide to cancel the series and restart it again. They’re doing the same thing with their “Star Wars” titles after a 75 issue run, they are restarting it in 2020. Hopefully, we will get a year or two worth out of these titles before they press the proverbial reset button.
Written by Dave “Chernabog” Whiteman, a Native Texan, Metalhead🤘, Writer, Star Woid, Funatic, and all-around Fanboy/Nerd/Geek! 👓