Archive for February, 2023

Posted Thursday, February 9th, 2023 by Barry

X-Men Pizza Hut Marvel Collector’s Edition (1993) 1-4

Pre-heat the ovens or punch the buttons, but get that pie on the table for National Pizza Day.

Last year we discussed the Pizza Hut promo with Marvel Comics; more precisely the X-Men. We re-warming the same idea this year, but with new material.

Pizza Hut and Marvel proved a powerful pairing as they brought diners the Pizza Hut Super Savings Book featuring the X-Men. That only prepared the way for four, original 16-page X-Men comic books.

For the price of a personal pizza, diners received the free comic book.

The timing was no coincidence with the critically and commercially acclaimed X-Men animated feature airing on Fox Kids Network every Saturday morning beginning in October of 1992.

With Marvel’s mutant franchise on the rise, licensing was proving very lucrative. From the source comic books to the small screen and into the hands of eager youngsters with action figures and video games, the once stagnant title was proving a cash cow.

Stan Lee and Jack Kirby first created the X-Men in 1963. The book did little on the bookshelves and was relegated to reprints by decades end. Not until Len Wein and Dave Cockrum revamped the team title in 1975 did dividends begin to pay off.

Having introduced a new team in Giant-Size X-Men issue one, Wein stepped back allowing a young Chris Claremont to helm the book for the next 20 years.

In 1989, Pryde of the X-Men, an animated television pilot, aired on the Marvel Action Universe. It was not well received and plans for an animated X-Men series was ignored – until 1992.

By the time Marvel and Pizza Hut partnered, the series was airing in over 23 million homes.

Currently Pizza Hut has over 18,000 restaurants worldwide while Americans alone consume, on average, over four billion pizzas a year. That includes both pizzerias and the grocery-store, frozen variety. As related last year, that’s an average of 23 pounds of pizza per person in an annual basis.

To commemorate, order or warm up your pie of choice, then settle in to some X-Men goodness. Be sure to wash your hands so as not to get the pages greasy.


Posted Friday, February 3rd, 2023 by Barry

Captain Carrot and His Amazing Zoo Crew! (1982) 1

We’ve called on him before, and we’re doing it again today. Captain Carrot and His Amazing Zoo Crew are helping celebrate National Carrot Cake Day.

While carrots may seem an odd choice for cake flavoring, the confection has been around since the middle ages. It is believed carrots were selected as a sweet substitute for sugar. Most likely carrot cake was developed from a carrot pudding.

A carrot cake is a form of quick bread; a mixture of wet and dry ingredients done separately then combined. The finished product is coarser than a traditional cake. Cinnamon and nutmeg compliment the natural sweetness of carrots. Nuts and raisins are sometimes added.

Having offered more information on carrot cake then probably needed, let’s delve into the origins of Captain Carrot.

Captain Carrot and His Amazing Zoo Crew! (1982) 1

The Captain and crew were created by Roy Thomas and Scott Shaw. They were given a 16-page tryout as a special insert in The New Teen Titans issue 16. A 20-issue series followed beginning the same year.

Superman discovered the parallel Earth, C, while investigating a ray causing the citizens of Metropolis to act like primates. While flying to the source of the ray, Superman encountered a barrier. The Man of Steel attempted to smash through with a meteor only to find he had skipped to another dimensional plain. There he found Earth C where fragments from the meteor caused members of that Earth to gain super powers.

Together they formed the Amazing Zoo Crew.

Various crises have caused the demise and rebirth of the characters over time. Their most recent reincarnation came in Final Crisis issue seven when Monitor Nix Uotan restored the Zoo Crew to their former selves.

Team members include Roger Rodney Rabbit. His alter ego is Captain Carrot. He gains his powers by consuming a cosmic carrot allowing his superpowers to last 24 hours.

Felina Furr, aka Alley-Kat-Abra who helps with her magic wand.

Peter Porkchops, aka Pig-Iron. A freak accident caused his skin to harden like steel.

Byrd Rentals, or Rubberduck, who is also known as the malleable mallard due to his stretching abilities.

Rova Barkitt, aka Yankee Poodle, can project a force beam consisting of stars.

Timmy Joe Terrapin, also known as Fastback, who can run at superfast speeds.

Chester Cheese, or Little Cheese. Cheese can shrink to atomic sizes

Johnny Jingo, aka The American Eagle. He has no super powers, but functions like Batman.

Though only 20 issues, Captain and crew earned a rogue’s gallery to rival Flash’s as well as Starro the Conqueror and Gorilla Grodd, both of Earth-One.

So, enjoy the day with a piece of cake, topped with a cheesy title.