Amazing Adult Fantasy #14
Issue(s): Amazing Adult Fantasy #14
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+
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.
Continuity Insert? N
My Reprint: X-Men Rarities
Inbound References (1): showTad Carter, Tobias Messenger 1962 / Box 1 / Silver Age
1962 / Box 1 / Silver Age
I'd have much preferred it if the mutant that contacted Tad had been revealed as Josef Huber.
Posted by: Nathan Adler | July 7, 2012 8:31 PM
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.
Posted by: Ataru320 | August 16, 2012 6:17 PM
I love the tagline on bottom of the cover of this issue: "THE MAGAZINE THAT RESPECTS YOUR INTELLIGENCE." Classic.
Posted by: Robert | January 22, 2016 3:14 AM
"We are the telepaths, the teleporters, the mind readers!"
Uhm... you already said "telepaths." Isn't "mind readers" kind of redundant? Surely you've got a guy with wings or someone who can affect the weather or something...
Posted by: Dan H. | April 5, 2017 9:12 AM
I wonder if there used to be more of a distinction between the ability to project thoughts (and maybe allowing the other person to respond back to you) vs. the ability to read minds deeply.
Posted by: fnord12 | April 5, 2017 9:38 AM
Maybe I'm wrong, but I've always thought of "telepathy" as an umbrella for several talents and "mind reading" as just one example.
Posted by: Dan H. | April 5, 2017 10:01 AM
Mutants were introduced in Strange Tales #31 in August 1954. It was a one-off story where all the known mutants died by the end.
Posted by: Steve P. | May 1, 2018 12:52 PM
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