Marvel Two-in-One #44: The Wonderful World of Brother Benjamin J. Grimm

Writer: Marv Wolfman
Penciller: Bob Hall
Inker: F. Giacoia
Letterer: J. Costanza
Colorist: Michele W.
Editor: Marv Wolfman

The Guest Star:

The Villain:
      Y'Androgg; Manduu the Merciless; Krokarr the Cruel

Guest Shots:
      Human Torch; Zeus

The Set Up:
      Bashful Benjy is at Camp Run-A-Mok, having been stuck with the lovely duty of visiting and entertaining the kids. As seems to be usual with Ben and kids, they seem to be getting the better of him. To keep 'em under control, Ben tells them a "real-fer-honest-and-true story."
     The story starts with Ben in the Baxter Building, working out. The Human Torch comes home and picks a fight, which ends with Ben's weights melted. With nothing else to do, he takes a walk, only to be shanghied by Hercules, who has been flying the streets of New York City in a chariot being pulled by a pegasus, looking for Ben. Not giving the Thing a chance to say 'no', Hercules literally lifts him off the street and flies them to Mount Olympus. It seems a race of giants from afar have invaded Mount Olympus and taken over, and Hercules needs Ben's help. The two land where the first of the three giants lives, and Ben bashes them an entrance in...

Clobberin' Time?:
      Nope. A kind of fun exchange, though, from Page 10, panel 1, as Hercules and the Thing take on some Flying Pythons:
          Herc: "For Zeus! For Olympus!"
          Ben: "Fer the Luvva Pete! Ya know ya jaw almost as much as Reed?"

Petunia's Patch:
      No Petunia in here.

Things of Interest:
      I'm still waiting to hear about Iron Man and the Ravagers of Raguu!
     This is one of those 'guilty pleasure' issues for me. The plot is unbelievable and not at all extraordinary- Ben and Hercules simply beat up everything they meet. That's it. What makes this work is the format of the story- Ben telling it to the kids. It allows Ben to inject a lot of humor into the storyline, and makes the whole thing very enjoyable. Though far from a great story, there's quite a few laughs in it for me everytime I reread it...
     Given that this was written and edited by Marv Wolfman, I suspect that this was an inventory written during his tenure as editor (issues 25-38) and pulled out when they need a fill-in. The fact that the next several issues are all written by different writers supports this theory.