Every day this month I will share with you the first (at least as far as I know) U.S. professional work by a notable comic book creator. Here is an archive of the creators who have been featured so far.
Today’s featured creator is Bill Mantlo!
Bill Mantlo was one of the most prolific writers for Marvel during the 1980s, writing notable runs of Micronauts and Rom the Spaceknight. He also wrote Spectacular Spider-Man and the Incredible Hulk. He also did fill-ins for pretty much every book Marvel published during the late 1970s and early 1980s.
After holding a few odd jobs here and there, Bill Mantlo gained an assistant job at Marvel in 1974 when he was roughly 23 years old. He worked for Marvel’s production manager at first, and his first pro work of ANY kind was doing some coloring work. However, his first work as a writer came in December of 1974, for Marvel’s black and white martial arts comic magazine, The Deadly Hands of Kung Fu, the seventh issue to be precise.
The Deadly Hands of Kung Fu was also just the fourth art assignment for George Perez as a pro artist.
Here is the opening of #7’s story (both stories star the Sons of the Tiger)…
And here is the opening of #8’s story…