J.M. DeMatteiis has an acclaimed run on Captain America, working mostly with penciler Mike Zeck, from issue #261 through #300.
However, his first three issues were not actually written to be part of any sort of run!
No, issues #261-263, which came out in the Summer of 1981, were actually part of DeMatteis' very first paid work at Marvel Comics, for a project in 1979!
You see, in 1979, there was a TV movie made starring Reb Brown as Captain America.
Here's a cool poster for the TV movie from French television...
Here's Brown as Cap...
The movie was popular enough that it had a sequel.
In any event, Jim Shooter thought that it would be a good idea for Marvel to do a project tying in with the film, so DeMatteis was hired to write a Treasury Edition comic about the movie - rather than an adaptation, the comic would be about Cap having an adventure with the people from the movie, including meeting Reb Brown.
The project fell by the wayside, but a couple of years later, Captain America Editor Jim Salicrup was looking for some fill-in issues (the book had been all fill-in issues since John Byrne and Roger Stern's run had ended), so he dug out DeMatteis' issues and had DeMatteis re-work them from a Treasury Edition into three regular issues of Cap.
Here are some pages from #261 to give you an idea of what the original plot must have been...
Anyhow, I guess the issues went over well, as DeMatteis was named the regular writer for the title and stayed on the book for three years!
Thanks to Mike Higgins, Jim Salicrup and David Kraft's Comics Interview for their great interview with DeMatteis back in Comics Interview #39 (and, of course, thanks to DeMatteis for the interview!).
Okay, that's it for this week!
Feel free (heck, I implore you!) to write in with your suggestions for future installments! My e-mail address is firstname.lastname@example.org.
As you likely know by now, last April my book finally came out!
Here is the cover by artist Mickey Duzyj. I think he did a very nice job (click to enlarge)...
If you'd like to order it, you can use the following code if you'd like to send me a bit of a referral fee...
See you all next week!