Timeline Tuesday: October

Taking a look back at ten, twenty-five, fifty, even seventy-five years of October comicbook anniversaries!

The Walking Dead #1 hit the stands, by some accounts, exactly ten years ago today: October 8th, 2003. Ten years and still a major benchmark not only for ‘independent’ and Image comics, but also for comics history as well. (We really need another term for those comics not published by the big two, but not small enough to truly be called independent. Any thoughts?)

– It’s only because I love the mini-series so much that I’m allowing JLA/Avengers to show up again. This would be for issue #2 featuring the two teams engaging each other while zooming around on a scavenger hunt for some of DC’s and Marvel’s most infamous devices. This is also the issue that made Thor fans weep for years to come. Suckas.

Amazing Spider-Man returns to its original volume one numbering in time for issue #500.



– Jason Todd’s fate is in the hands of 10,000+ comic readers. Did you allow him to live or die? Batman #428, the third part of the “A Death in the Family” storyline, led the way for a new Robin, brought speculation to the identity of “Hush”, and gave us the surprisingly good “Under the Hood” story and the eventual return of Jason Todd. Maybe those voters did us a favor?

– This was a good month for Marvel milestones: Captain America #350, Thor #400 and Avengers #300.

– The DC Universe is about to experience an Invasion! This three issue event crossover gave DC the concept of the metagene – a latent gene within most (if not all) humans that, when triggered, empowered them with a variety of different abilities. I suppose it was DC’s answer to the mutant gene – but nowhere near as organic a concept or permanent, thankfully. It was even being used to explain why a character like Green Arrow could be so good with his weapons of choice. A bit overkill on that and I’m glad it was quickly done away with as a concept.


Fantastic Four #22. First appearance of Mole Man’s Moloids. Sue Storm starts to use her powers to make invisible force fields. And the Thing utters his catchphrase for the first time: ‘It’s clobberin’ time!’. I probably would’ve kept the phrase that came right before his battlecry. ‘Yay bo!’ needs to make a comeback!


– Described only as “an inquisitive office-boy”, this appearance of an unnamed blonde-haired youth in Action Comics #6 is steadily getting the credit as Jimmy Olsen’s first comicbook appearance. The character and name of ‘Jimmy Olsen’ was introduced on the Adventures of Superman Radio Show in 1940 and appeared for the first time in comics as a named character (‘Jimmy’) in Superman #13 (1941). That Superman appearance had Jimmy as a blonde as well – so connecting it back to this earlier appearance certainly seems appropriate.