RETRO HOT PICKS! On Sale This Week — in 1985!

Scott and Dan hit up the comics racks from 36 years ago!

This week for RETRO HOT PICKS, Scott Tipton and I are selecting comics that came out the week of May 5, 1985.

Last time for RETRO HOT PICKS, it was the week of April 28, 1974. Click here to check it out.

(Keep in mind that comics came out on multiple days back then — as has become the case now. So these are technically the comics that went on sale between May 2 and May 8.)

So let’s set the scene: Ronald Reagan was in his second White House term but May 5, 1985, was one of the most eventful days of his presidency due to his controversial visit to a cemetery in Bitburg, West Germany, where 2,000 German soldiers, including 49 SS troops, were buried.

On a far less sober note, a movie that I’ve never heard of — a RETRO HOT PICKS first — was tops at the box office: Code of Silence, starring Chuck Norris. As usual, The Cosby Show was a Nielsen ratings powerhouse. Madonna’s Crazy For You was the No. 1 single, supplanting the celeb-heavy We Are the World, which dropped to second. (The We Are the World album, on the other hand, led the Billboard 200.) Personally, I prefer the wacky No. 5 single: One Night in Bangkok, by Murray Head.


Scott Tipton, contributor-at-large, 13th Dimension

Wonder Woman #326, DC Comics. I really liked this Wonder Woman logo but it didn’t stick around long. Similarly, I thought this issue’s writer, Mindy Newell, had real potential with WW, but her arc got cut short by Crisis on Infinite Earths.

The Avengers #258, Marvel. This was a great issue, a stealth crossover with that month’s Amazing Spider-Man, in which Firelord, former herald of Galactus, comes to Earth in search of a slice of pizza, and winds up in a crosstown brawl with a petrified Spidey, who realizes he’s way out of his league.

DC Comics Presents #84, DC Comics. Wait a minute, wait a minute, wait a minute. This was a new comic in 1985 with art by Jack Kirby and Alex Toth and I’ve never seen it?! Unacceptable. I just bought a copy off eBay.

The Shadow War of Hawkman #4, DC Comics. I bought this issue off the shelf at my then-new local comic shop, and it was a huge relief, because they had convincingly suckered me into believing that they had killed off Hawkgirl in the first issue, and boy, was I angry about it.

Dan Greenfield, editor, 13th Dimension

Best of DC Digest #63, DC. C’mon it’s Plop! How can you go wrong?

Sword of the Atom Special #2, DC. Look, I totally get the desire to do something different with what is essentially a one-trick character. (Don’t @ me: I love the Atom.) Nevertheless, the whole concept seemed awfully strange to me, especially the whole barbarian shtick. But hey, A for effort.

Marvel Tales #178, Marvel. I will always pick Marvel Tales when it’s serving up classic ’60s or early ’70s Spidey. And this is one of the classic-est: John Romita’s first spin at the wall-crawler, from ASM #39.


— RETRO HOT PICKS! On Sale The Week of April 28 — in 1974! Click here.

— RETRO HOT PICKS! On Sale The Week of April 21 — in 1966! Click here.

Primary sources: Mike’s Amazing World of Comics, the Grand Comics Database.

Author: Dan Greenfield

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  1. Man, I would buy a hardcover PLOP! collection in a minute! Such a weird mix of horror and comedy.

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    • Ditto for Sword of the Atom!

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      • They did release a complete softcover collection a few years ago.

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  2. Always fun to see comics I bout at the local 7-11 in Southwest Philly!

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  3. “One Night in Bangkok” was written by Benny Andersson and Björn Ulvaeus (of ABBA fame) for their musical “Chess.” I always loved the single and, as a chess player myself, I can’t help but notice that the song lyrics show a more than a casual knowledge of chess history & culture. For example, Iceland, Hastings, & the Philippines- mentioned in the lyrics, are sites of famous chess tournaments and championship matches.

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