So let’s wrap up these two weeks of Man-Thinging with a little bit of class, as we turn our gaze upon one of comicdom’s favorite only-just-barely-double entendres, the title of the five issue series Giant-Size Man-Thing.
We’ve all heard the jokes, a few have popped up in the comments for my last few posts, and I’m sure you’ve noticed how I’ve tagged my Man-Thing entries. I even had someone message me on the Twitter, commenting on how “Man-Thing” sounds like a euphemism for “penis,” and I almost responded “Huh…never noticed that before,” but I couldn’t be that much of a jerk. I do wonder if someone at Marvel in the ’70s ever went through their catalog of titles and suddenly realized what they’d done by adding Man-Thing to their “Giant-Size” line of books. “Let’s see…Giant-Size Avengers, Giant-Size Fantastic Four, Giant-Size Invaders, Giant-Size Man-Thing, Giant-Size Spider-M…wait, hold on.”
The last time I addressed it, I asserted that there was only one “in-universe” Giant-Size Man-Thing gag that I knew of, and some of you responded letting me know of a couple of others I’d forgotten about.
The one I’d mentioned comes from issue #6 of the 1997 Man-Thing series by J.M. DeMatteis and Liam Sharp, where Manny’s old pal Howard the Duck observes the creature magically increasing in size, and Howard’s commentary is as follows:
Some folks, both in my comments and across the Internet, have mentioned a gag in Peter David’s Captain Marvel series where a character protects his modesty with a copy of Giant-Size Man-Thing. However, it’s not Rick Jones, but rather a person (unnamed during this storyline) who appears to be the Modern Age version of the Red Raven, and who had been transformed into a bird by Merlin, and…well, there’s a lot to get into here. Suffice to say, he ended up nekkid and in search of his armor, appropriated by another character, and there you go. Here’s the scene from Captain Marvel #21 (Sept. 2001) by David, ChrisCross and Anibal Rodriguez:
Some additional information, including some possible background on the gag, can be found at the end of this Marvel Universe Appendix entry.
And here’s the one in-universe gag I didn’t own, but has since been provided to me by that most stuffed of little stuffed bulls, Bully. (He’s too young to get the joke, so don’t tell him, okay?) From Deadpool Team-Up #894 (June 2010) by Ivan Brandon, Sanford Greene and Nathan Massengill:
And there you have it, a tour of Giant Size Man-Thing jokes from within the Marvel Universe itself. If there are more, I’m sure we’ll hear about ‘em in the comments.
Thank you, everyone, for putting up with my peculiar obsession with Marvel’s swamp monster over the last couple of weeks. Sometimes I just get that urge and have to let it all hang out.
For the last word on Man-Thing (for now) let us go back to the very first words, as they were blurbed on the cover of the mag with Manny’s debut, Savage Tales #1 (May 1971):
Well, sure, why not.