I love old comic advertisements. With my background in marketing and having worked as a comics retailer, I find this stuff fascinating! Today we’re featuring a number of Firestorm promotional blurbs from Amazing Heroes. If you’re not familiar with Amazing Heroes, it was a magazine about comic books published by Fantagraphics Books from 1981 to 1992. It regularly featured industry news, comics creator interviews, histories of comic book characters, and reviews. It was the precursor to publications like Wizard Magazine, but without the price guide and overly-hyped content.
These promotions cover issues starting around Fury of Firestorm #22, and run all the way up to #100. One of the things I love is finding plots or concepts in the promotions that never appeared in the comic. These were story ideas the author was considering while planning future months, but ultimately chose not to pursue. I find those “road not taken” ideas fascinating.
These scans were compiled by Match-head and Nuclear Sub, Joe X! My apologies to Joe for taking so long to post these pages. He sent them to me way back in July 2014! Sorry, Joe! I chose not to crop the surrounding page(s) as they make for fascinating reading. You’ll notice the Firestorm entries have been highlighted in yellow to make it easier to find. Click each image to enlarge and read!
Amazing Heroes #39 – January 15, 1984
Note the mention of the never-published Firestorm Graphic Novel. Man, I would have loved to have seen that book!
Amazing Heroes #62 – January 1, 1985
Note the mention that Cliff Carmichael will be Ronnie’s roommate in college. I don’t recall that happening, but to be honest it’s been a while since I read issues in the 40s & 50s. I may be mis-remembering.
Amazing Heroes Preview Special #1 – Summer 1985
Note the mention of Firehawk joining the Justice League! Wow! This was during the Justice League Detroit era, so Firestorm was no longer on the team. That would have been fantastic to see Firehawk battling crime without Firestorm. A real chance to spread her wings (pun intended) and show the readers she’s a strong independent character. Also, another mention of the never-published Firestorm Graphic Novel.
Amazing Heroes Preview Special #2 – Winter 1986
Note the interesting ideas about Firestorm working for the Police and concerns of brutality. That would have been an interesting plot thread to see develop. Another mention of the never-published Firestorm Graphic Novel and Conway’s hope to place Firehawk in the Justice League!
Amazing Heroes Preview Special #3 – Summer 1986
This one is a little sad. This promotional copy would have been written about the time Gerry Conway was let go from the Firestorm book. Notice editor Denny O’Neil is being interviewed instead of Gerry. Many of these ideas were either never realized, or written by subsequent writers. There is mention of a new villain named “Lava” that never appeared. Also, Denny definitively put an end to the hopes of a Firestorm Graphic Novel.
Amazing Heroes Preview Special #4 – Winter 1987
Shades of the Blank Slate Firestorm being hinted at here.
Amazing Heroes Preview Special – Summer 1987
Pretty much everything here happens exactly as they described (except the spelling of Zuggernaut). I’m surprised they gave away so much of the plot in this preview magazine. I’m glad I didn’t read this before the issues; all the surprises would have been spoiled!
Amazing Heroes #133 – January 15, 1988
Again with the major spoilers! Geez! Save your 75 cents kids. Read this and you don’t even need to pick up the issues to know what is happening!
Amazing Heroes #145 – July 15, 1988
More issue by issue spoilers this time. Plus, a nice mention of Firestorm’s rising sales, and suggestion of a Soyuz mini-series that never materialized.
Amazing Heroes #157/Preview Special #8 – January 15, 1989
Building towards the Elemental Firestorm storyline! Interesting that they compare Rasputin to John Constantine. Plus an abandoned plot of Doreen in trouble. Man, it would have been great if the Parasite had eaten Doreen!
Amazing Heroes #170/Preview Special #9 – August 1989
Whoa, satire? We’ve come a long way.
Amazing Heroes Preview Special #10 – March, 1990
A slight hint about the series ending with issue #100 in the phrase, “… final, fateful changes…” Other than that, no real way to tell the adventures of our favorite Nuclear Man (or Elemental Man by this point) would be coming to an end.
What a fun trip down memory lane! Plus some new realizations about abandoned plot threads. My thanks to Joe X for sending these my way!
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