Marvel Feature #1, Marvel Comics, December 1971

The Avengers were Marvel’s unchallenged super hero team for a full 8 years before their first real challengers appeared. The Defenders were born on the pages of Marvel Feature #1 written by Marvel wonder boy Roy Thomas. Hulk, Sub-Mariner and Doc Strange made up the team while Silver Surfer showed up in a cameo role (though he would later officially join) The Defenders gained huge popularity right out of the gate and it wasn’t long before Marvel launched The Defenders (Aug/72) The Defenders run lasted a very respectable 152 issues. Early in the run an epic 8 issue cross-over with the Avengers (Avengers #115-118 and Defenders #8-11) remains highly collectible and also set the standard for big Marvel cross over events in the future.

The Overstreet Price Guide shows $111/$206/$300 as the splits at the 8.0/9.0/9.2 grades.

Strengths that make this comic book a good long term investment are:

– Neal Adams cover, Silver Surfer Cameo, solo Doc Strange story,

– Marvel’s 2nd big Team title and featuring heavyweights the Hulk, Sub-Mariner and Doc Strange

– A 52 page Giant Size format with only 3 graded at CGC 9.8 and only 31 at 9.6 make it relatively scarce for the era

– A Bronze Age Marvel Key!

– Big name members like Hulk, Doc Strange, Sub Mariner, Luke Cage and Silver Surfer means the Defenders will be forever considered and revisited

Walter Durajlija is an Overstreet Advisor and Shuster Award winner. He owns Big B Comics in Hamilton, Ontario, Canada