Marvel Two-In-One launched in 1974, teaming the Thing with a different hero each month. This guide will tell you everything you wanted to know about the series – and more!

Marvel Two-In-One #15Publisher: Marvel Comics
Cover Date: May 1976
Cover Price: 25¢
Writer: Bill Mantlo
Artist: Arv Jones

WHO stars in this issue?

the Thing – Benjamin J. Grimm was bombarded by cosmic rays in a space exploration flight, alongside three friends. The cosmic rays gave each of them different powers, and they formed the Fantastic Four. Ben underwent the most physical change of the foursome: his skin mutated into orange rock and, as a result, he gained super-strength.

Morbius – Doctor Michael Morbius was a Nobel Prize-winning biochemist who suffered from a rare blood disease. He devised and experimental treatment to cure the ailment and tested it on himself. The treatment went wrong and Morbius now needs to feast on blood in order to survive. He also developed super powers from his experiment including flight, speed, and super-strength.

WHAT happens?

Morbius breaks into Alicia Masters‘ apartment, intending to make her his next meal but, his attack is quickly stopped by a visit from her boyfriend, the Thing. As they battle in her apartment, in the alleyway below, the Living Eraser makes his return to Earth. He intends to create havoc here in order to convince the military from his home, Dimension Z, that control should be taken from their Supremor and given to him.

As Morbius is driven out of Alicia’s apartment, he flies through the alley below and spies the Living Eraser – his next target! The Thing sees the attack and suspects that Morbius is just attempting to feast on another unfortunate human – not suspecting that Morbius’ victim is a malevolent invader from Dimension Z. And, as the Thing and Morbius do battle for a second time, the Living Eraser turns his erasers on both of them – transporting them to a prison cell in Dimension Z.

The Thing and Morbius decide to set aside their differences and work together to get back to Earth and stop the Living Eraser’s rampage. They break free from the cell, fight through the Eraser’s forces, locate some erasing devices and use them to return to Earth. Once there, they make quick work of the Living Eraser. But, rather than bask in is victory, Morbius turns the erasers on himself in a bid to save the Earth from being inhabited by the monster he considers himself to be.

WHERE does the story take place?

That battle against the Living Eraser takes place in Midtown Manhattan – but in between, the Thing and Morbius are dispatched to Dimension Z.

WHEN does the villain next appear?

In Sensational She-Hulk #35, it’s revealed that the first Living Eraser was executed! That very same issue introduces a new Living Eraser.

WHY is Morbius the guest-lead?

I fight it rather interesting that Morbius (originally a Spider-Man villain) later went on to feature in his own solo series. He took over Fear with issue #20 (cover date: February 1974) and was featured there until the series ended with issue #31 (cover date: December 1975). The last three of those issues were written by Bill Mantlo – who wrote this very issue! So, it seems that Mantlo enjoyed writing the character (he also used the character in Marvel Premiere #28 [cover date: February 1976]). If you’re curious to find out what happened next to Morbius, check out Spectacular Spider-Man #7-8.

HOW was it?

To be honest, there was far too much coincidence in this book for me to really enjoy it. Morbius attacking the Thing’s girlfriend? OK. I can accept that – but once the Living Eraser just happens to transport himself into that very same location … at the very same time – well, now you’ve lost me. There was also quite a blooper that I just couldn’t help but notice. On page 26, the Thing turns the eraser on the Living Eraser – erasing his right arm. The arm is still missing on page 27 but somehow, it magically reappears on pages 28 & 29. Similarly, the Eraser erases the Thing’s left leg on page 26. It’s missing on page 27 but it magically reappears on pages 28 & 29. On the plus side, it’s nice to see the Thing knock Morbius around and then form a tentative alliance only because they absolutely need to rely on each other to free themselves from Dimension Z.

Note: This issue’s letters column features commentary on Marvel Two-In-One #13 and includes letters written by Paul Dini and Ralph Macchio. Additionally, this comic includes Marvel Value Stamp [Series B] #79 (part of the Silver Surfer puzzle).

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