Saturday, August 26, 2023

Monster Kirby Taboo

In that nebulous time between Captain America being frozen in the ocean and his revival in the Avengers, there were monsters roaming the Marvel Universe.

One of those menaces to Earth humans that they had to face without costumed heroes was Taboo, and here is his story.

Strange Tales #75 (June, 1960)

"Taboo! The Thing From The Murky Swamp!" first appeared in this story by Stan Lee, Larry Leiber, Jack Kirby and Dick Ayers (under a cover by Kirby and Steve Ditko). Taboo was an alien who crashed into the Amazon jungle, where he waited until he was found by author Lewis Conrad.  Taboo explained to Conrad that he needed Earth's knowledge so he could return home.  Conrad helped convince the United Nations to help, and presented Earth's knowledge to him.  With this information, Taboo revealed he was really an advanced scout for an invasion, and that the knowledge would help his people conquer Earth.  But, as he left Earth, a hydrogen bomb secreted in the records exploded, stopping Taboo from reuniting with his people.

But, that was not all for Taboo!


Strange Tales #77 (October, 1960)

Stan Lee
, Larry Leiber, Jack Kirby and Dick Ayers brought back the monster with "The Return Of Taboo!".  Taboo reformed after the hydrogen bomb explosion, and went on a bit of a rampage all over New York, especially menacing Officer Dan and his wife, Susan.  Then, even worse, more alien ships approached.  It was more of Taboo's race, but, far from being an invading force, they were benevolent aliens, who were appalled by Taboo's actions, taking him into custody and repairing the damage he did to Earth.

Still, Earth wasn't about to see the last of Taboo.

Taboo would return, usually in tandem with other monstrous menaces, such as the time he was part of a group of monsters the Avengers' villain, the Collector, had kept in a flashback tale from Marvel Monsters On The Prowl #1 (December, 2005) to being one of the monsters duplicated by Xemnu (like Groot, the Blip and Goom) in Hulk Annual #5 (November, 1976).

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