- The Fantastic Four
- The Avengers
- Thor (and Tales of Asgard)
- Iron Man (Tales of Suspense 1st feature)
- Captain America (Tales of Suspense 2nd feature)
- Giant Man (Tales to Astonish 1st feature)
- The Hulk (Tales to Astonish 2nd feature)
- Human Torch and the Thing (Strange Tales 1st feature)
- Dr. Strange (Strange Tales 2nd feature)
- The X-Men (bi-monthy)
- Daredevil (bi-monthly)
plus Sgt. Fury & the Howling Commandos, three Western comics, and Millie the Model.
Here's how Marvel's web site describes their current line-up:
- Black Panther
- Captain America
- Doctor Strange
- Fantastic Four
- Ghost Rider
- Iron Man
- Squadron Supreme
Things get a little better when you look at individual titles. There is a Cable/Gambit limited series. Both of these characters are from the 1990s. The current Thor title stars Beta Ray Bill who was introduced in 1983.
The current X-Men are almost all from the 1960s-1980s. The newest character in the "New Avengers" is Spider-Woman and she is from the late 1970s as is Wolverine. Cage is from around 1970. Daredevil was also in for a short time.
The one new character is the Sentry who was originally created as a retro-Stan Lee character.
So, where are the new characters? In the 1970s Marvel was taken over by martial arts and supernatural characters (Shang-Chi, Iron Fist, Dracula, Werewolf By Night, Morbius the living vampire, Ghost Rider, Man Thing, the Living Mummy, and the Zombie) plus Conan and Red Sonya. In the 1980s they added a few new heroes like Power Pack. In the late 1980s and early 1990s they added a half dozen mutant titles.
So, where is the current creativity going? Where are the new characters?
I'll tell you what I think has happened in my next post.