Giant-Size Man-Thing.

§ March 24th, 2011 § Filed under giant-size man-thing § 9 Comments

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.

9 Responses to “Giant-Size Man-Thing.”

  • Nat Gertler says:

    I talked to Gerber about Giant-Size Man-Thing once. He claimed that they really were unaware of what they were doing while they were doing it. It wasn’t until a neighbor expressed an interest in what Steve did, and Steve brought over a copy of G-S M-T, which she looked at the title, blanched, and handed back to him saying “I didn’t realize they did that kind of comic!” before quickly closing the door on him that he realized just what they had done…

  • Old Bull Lee says:

    That coming ad tops all the giant-size jokes.

  • Rich Handley says:

    I wonder if women who know fear burn at the coming of the Man-Thing.

  • buzz says:

    I can vouch for Nat’s story; Steve told me the same thing.

  • Matthew E says:

    I did a different GSMT joke about halfway down the comments to this blogpost which most here would probably find interesting on its own merits:

  • Dan Lokhorst says:

    There’s Giant-Size Man-Thing, and then there’s Giant-Size *Double-Length* Man-Thing

  • Tim O'Neil says:

    Something I’ve always wanted to ask you, Mike – I know you’re a big Man-Thing fan, but do you have any feelings about Swamp Thing? I don’t think I’ve ever seen you discuss the character.

  • Tom Mason says:

    Back in the Ultraverse days, Chris Ulm and I tried to get Gerber to admit that Dr. Bong from Howard The Duck was a drug reference. He swore, without any twinkle in his eye, that he didn’t know the word had a drug culture background when he came up with the character; it was strictly “guy has a head shaped like a bell, he’s Dr. Bong.” He was quite insistent, so I buy into his GSMT story as well.

  • If Marvel had caught on to the “Bong” reference, they may have changed it to something innocuous like “Dr. Ding-a-ling”…
    Imagine Giant-Size Man-Thing -vs- The Dingaling (Giant-Sized or not).

    *sigh* I miss Steve Gerber…

    Thanks for the Man-Thing Marathon, Mike.