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Review: Origins of Marvel Comics #1

A concise primer on Marvel for new readers.

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The origin stories of every major Marvel character are recounted in page-long summaries.

The Good

Van Lente does a great job of distilling these characters' complex histories into concise recounts without it ever feeling like dull summary. Even though I'm well aware of everything covered in this issue, it was still a good refresher to see how all these characters can be defined thematically, both on their own and in contrast to eachother. Also, there's no shortage of amazing art from these twenty two or so contributors.

The Bad

If you've been reading Marvel's titles for more than a year (being generous), than this won't tell you anything you don't already know, thoroughly.

The Verdict - 4/5

This is a tricky book to evaluate since it isn't really a story. It's sort of like reviewing one of Marvel's Official Handbooks. If you're new to Marvel or have friends whom you'd like to give a concise primer on Marvel, too, then I highly recommend this book. It executes its educational purpose exceptionally well. But if you're an established reader, this will be covering well-tread territory for you.