Monday, 14 July 2014


Incredible Hulk #121 cover by Herb Trimpe
Welcome back to Muck Monster Monday, where this week we'll be looking at Marvel's first returning swamp creature. No, not the Man-Thing, whose debut was still a year and a half away. We are talking about The Glob. Now, if you don't remember The Glob, it's not that surprising as the character only appeared a handful of times, most notably as an antagonist for The Hulk. And it was in the pages of The Incredible Hulk that he/it made its debut.
Oh, a quick aside here. There had been another character called The Glob in the pre-hero Marvel monster title Journey Into Mystery (#72, September 1961). That Glob has no connection to this one, and although it looks like a typical swamp creature it is actually just a statue that comes to life because of some magical paint. Which is why I've not included it in Muck Monster Monday.
A Glob is born! Art by Herb Trimpe.
Right, let's get back to this Glob. We first meet him (or is it it?) in the pages of Incredible Hulk #121 (November 1969). Joe Timms was a petty criminal in prison when he received a letter telling him that his wife was close to death. In an attempt to be with her one last time, Timms broke out of jail, but in attempting to get across a nearby swamp he stumbled upon a patch of quicksand and was pulled down. For a number of years his body lay there, until a passing Hulk kicked a can of radioactive waste into the swamp. The waste reacted with the swamp and Timms' remains and then from out of the mire rose a grotesque mockery of a man, which we (or rather Roy Thomas, who wrote the story) shall call -- The Glob!
The Glob stumbled upon Betty Ross, and mistook  her for his/its lost love. It grabs Betty and drags her into the swamp pursued by  both the army, led by her father General "Thunderbolt" Ross, and The Hulk. After an initial confrontation between the Hulk and The Glob, during which the emerald hued monster discovers that his blows have no effect on the swamp creature, The Glob continues to take Betty further into the swamp. However, as the Glob approached the spot of it's birth, the same radioactive waters that spawned it, start to destroy it. The Glob starts to melt away, it's last action is to protect Betty, allowing the Hulk to get her to safety. Writer Roy Thomas shows great affection for the swamp monster genre, while penciller Herb Trimpe, surely one of the industry's most under-rated artists, in on top form. Check out his full page illo of The Glob rising from the mire somewhere on this page.
The Glob obviously proved popular and was quickly brought back a mere eight months later in Incredible Hulk #129 (July 1970).  The Hulk's arch-nemesis The Leader learns about The Glob's existence and re-creates the swamp creature. Planting the idea in the Glob's mind (or, at least, what passes for a mind) that The Hulk is attacking Betty, The Leader sends the swamp creature on a cross country rampage ending in Los Angeles, where the Hulk's alter ego Bruce Banner is currently hiding out.
The Glob attacks Banner, triggering the inevitable transformation into the Emerald Titan. The two engage in battle, ending up in a power station. High up on a tower, the Hulk electrocutes the bog monster, causing him/it to fall to the ground. There's an explosion and the Glob is blown into a million pieces. That's not quite the end of the story though, for as the Hulk strides off into the metaphorical sunset, we see two of the Glob fragments start to move slowly, but surely, together.
I TOLD you! I'm NOT going there!
It was a few years before readers once again encountered the Glob. In 1974 he/it returned again, not in the pages of The Incredible Hulk, but in Man-Thing. Or rather Man-Thing's quarterly companion title Giant-Size Man-Thing. No, I'm not saying anything. We've all heard the jokes about that title. 
After his encounter with the Florida based swamp monster, the Glob once again encountered The Hulk in a two part story in Incredible Hulk #197/8 which also featured a guest appearance by Man-Thing.
And then the Glob disappeared. A second Glob popped up in Incredible Hulk #398, but the original vanished, not to be seen again until 2005 when he/it turned up alongside Clone of Frankenstein, Gorilla-Man, Grogg, N'Kantu (The Living Mummy), Nina Price (Vampire By Night), Warwolf, and The Zombie as one of Nick Fury's monstrous Howling Commandos. One final appearance in the pages of She-Hulk, and that's all she wrote for Joe Timms.
Now, the first appearance of The Glob obviously proved popular, hence his rather rapid return eight months later. But was The Glob popular enough for someone at Marvel to think about a regular comic featuring a swamp creature? Who knows, but it wasn't too long before Marvel's more familiar muck monster Man-Thing made his first appearance. And we'll come to him in a couple of weeks. Next week however -- The Heap! Again! 
Before that of course there's another Fourth World Thursday, and a little feature in the works about some of Marvel's short horror stories.
'Til next time,

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