Sub-Mariner #64-72 (1973-1974): Series Ends

I love Steve Gerber, but this is not the right book for him-and Sub-Mariner had been running on fumes for a long time.  He sticks around through issue #69, and then it’s a bunch of one-offs before the book finally dies.

The Gerber parts are the best: Namor leaves Atlantis on principle, when he learns that the Amphibian people from #62 have been put in prison camps for being different.  It makes sense that Namor, with his white skin, would empathize, but he’s also always been such a nationalist that I wish we’d seen more inner conflict about this.

Anyway, he leaves Atlantis over this, taking Namorita with him, and moves to the abandoned Hydrobase.

Lots of other Marvel heroes guest star at various points.  And a young inventor, Clay Wilson, makes his first appearance.

He is a truly minor character at this point, and will alter become a less-minor-but-still-minor character, Force.  But nothing can elevate this book.  It’s done.

When Gerber leaves, it moves to bimonthly publication, and it ends with him figuring out he shouldn’t be so impetuous about fighting.  It’s a long story, not worth telling because he just reverts to his original personality the next time we see him.

Here’s the final panel…

Creators: Scripts: Steve Gerber (#64-69), Marv Wolfman (#70-71), Steve Skeates (#72)

Pencils: George Tuska (#64-71), Dan Adkins (#72)
Grade: D-
For the complete history of the MU, year by year, go here.

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