Comic Collection Monday #48: Solar, Man of the Atom #31
In today's Comic Collection Monday, I’ll take a look at “Solar, Man of the Atom” #31 with a publication date of March 1994.
In Comic Collection Monday, I post the cover of a comic book from my collection, along with a brief note about the issue – what I thought about it, where I got it, whatever comes to mind. Spoilers are ahead if you haven’t read the issue in question. I'm continuing a December theme of Christmas-themed comics with this issue.
The issue: The issue was written by Kevin VanHook, with art by Peter Grau and Jimmy Palmiotti.
The title is "Noel Nightmare.”
The superhero Solar has captured Ravenus, who can drain the life force from living beings. But with no safe place to hold him, he brings him home to his home in Cupertino, Calif., where his girlfriend Gayle isn’t thrilled. They’re already late for a Christmas party in Muskogee, Oklahoma and have missed their flight.
With no better immediate plan, they take the bound villain with them to the Christmas party, arriving via Solar’s powers. They stash him in a back bedroom, but when he escapes, he nearly drains Gayle’s life force as well.
Solar has to come up with a safe place to stash the bad guy, and the only answer that comes to mind, he’s not entirely comfortable with. Also, his powers are beginning to freak out Gayle, leading to additional complications. And a few more family and holiday complications rear their heads before the end of the issue! Overall a solid, fun issue in a good run of comics that to my knowledge hasn’t been reprinted anywhere.
(The current Valiant Comics has the rights to the characters created for the original Valiant, but not the Gold Key characters that Valiant licensed: Magnus, Solar and Turok.)
How it got in my collection: I think I was still collecting a good number of the Valiant Comics at this point, and Solar was a favorite besides. While it may never have been better than Valiant’s initial 10 issues with the character, Solar was a solid title. Kevin VanHook is an underrated comics writer to be sure.
Going on in the world: According to Mike’s Amazing World, this March-dated comic book would have gone on sale on Dec 22, 1993. The top show of the TV season was “60 Minutes.” The top film at the box office was “The Pelican Brief.” The top song on the Billboard hot 100 was “Again” by Janet Jackson.