Lodestone Publishing; $1.50

Marvel Graphic Novel #9 (January 1983) had introduced The Futurians – Terrayne, Vandervecken, Avatar, Mosquito, Sunswift, Blackmane, Silkie, Werehawk, and Silver Shadow – a new super team from New X-Men co-creator Dave Cockrum. The original graphic novel garnered fan support and went through at least two printings.

Then nothing.

It seemed like Cockrum’s second successful stint on X-Men might have led to a Futurians series, but for whatever reason the creator-artist didn’t take the plunge until publisher David Singer, also known for the Deluxe Comics series Wally Wood’s T.H.U.N.D.E.R. Agents, came along and offered him a deal.

Lodestone Publishing launched The Futurians By Dave Cockrum with Cockrum serving again as writer-penciller with this October 1985 issue. Inker Ricardo Villagran was added, and his style meshed well with Cockrum’s, particularly on the elements of the story that leaned toward horror.

Events in the issue continue from the Marvel Graphic Novel appearance. While Cockrum wasn’t as sophisticated a writer as X-Men scribe Chris Claremont, he was a character-generating machine and continued to introduce new characters, including Dr. Zeus and Hammerhand.

This series is little more than a footnote in the lengthy list of “What could have been…” when all is said and done, but for those who enjoy Cockrum’s work, this issue, the two that follow, and the rare Eternity Comics trade that collects them (and the fourth issue) are great reminders of the potential.

– J.C. Vaughn