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1962-06-01 00:01:10
Hulk #1
1962/Box 1/Silver Age
Strange Tales #114 (Dr. Strange)

Amazing Adult Fantasy #14

Issue(s): Amazing Adult Fantasy #14
Published Date: Jul 62
Title: "The Man In The Sky!"
Stan Lee - Writer
Steve Ditko - Penciler

Review/plot: Open reaching puberty, Tad Carter finds out that he has telekinesis and telepathy.

However, despite the fact that he wants to use his gifts to help humanity, they shun and attack him...

...and he is spirited away by a mysterious powerful mutant who rescues mutants in trouble and keeps them hidden until the day that mankind is ready to welcome them.

It's a quirky little horror/fantasy story like the ones we read throughout the monster age, but it's amazing how it introduces the mutant theme over a year before Uncanny X-Men #1.

This was originally meant to be a one-off story that had nothing to do with the super-hero stories they were kicking off, but everything here is the starting point for the mutant theme. John Byrne brought this into continuity with his X-Men: The Hidden Years series, but unfortunately not much was done with it. We will learn that the mutant that contacts Tad is named Tobias Messenger, and he's the leader of a group of mutants called The Promise that basically stays in suspended animation waiting for the day when the mutant/human war is over. That's somewhat different than what Messengers says here:

They are too savage, too primitive to understand! But we will bring you to us now, and you will wait with us... we shall wait together until the world is ready to welcome us! We shall wait, in hiding, until that fateful day... when mankind comes of age!

Note that the mutant concept was introduced even earlier at Marvel, in Yellow Claw #2 (Byrne uses that story in Hidden Years as well).

Quality Rating: C+

Historical Significance Rating: 3 - Early mutants.

Chronological Placement Considerations: I've got this placed based on the publication date (this was the last issue of Amazing Adult Fantasy before it changed its name to Amazing Fantasy in time to introduce Spider-Man and then get cancelled), but due to the suspended animation aspect introduced in Hidden Years, it might actually take place earlier.

References: N/A

Cross-over: N/A

Continuity Implant? N

Reprinted In: X-Men Rarities

Inbound References (1): show

Characters Appearing: Tad Carter, Tobias Messenger

Hulk #1
1962/Box 1/Silver Age
Strange Tales #114 (Dr. Strange)


I'd have much preferred it if the mutant that contacted Tad had been revealed as Josef Huber.

I remember reading on the Marvel Appendix that there was another comic of the "Monster Age" involving a woman who calls herself a "mutant", some time before this one. Obviously it was a convenience matter that just lead to more inspiration later by writers who could use it.

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