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102: Tales to Astonish #48 (v1)

" The Porcupine! "
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Tales to Astonish #48 (v1)
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Editor-in-Chief: Stan Lee
Cover Artists: Jack Kirby, Sol Brodsky
Writers: Stan Lee, H.E. Huntley
Pencilers: Don Heck
Inkers: Don Heck
Letterers: Sam Rosen
Editors: Stan Lee
Cover Date: October 1963
Release Date: July 1963
Story Arc: -
Pages: 13
Cover Price: $0.12
Times Read: 1,070                 Times Rated: 583
Plot Flags:  
Universes:   Earth-616  
Go to Issue #47 Go to Issue #49

Journey into Mystery #97b (v1)
Tales of Suspense #46 (v1)
Tales to Astonish #48 (v1)
Strange Tales #114a (v1)
Strange Tales #114b (v1)
100: Journey into...
#97b (v1)
101: Tales of Sus...
#46 (v1)
103: Strange Tale...
#114a (v1)
104: Strange Tale...
#114b (v1)
Expanded Order
Journey into Mystery #97b (v1)
Universe Tag
Tales of Suspense #46 (v1)
Universe Tag
Tales to Astonish #48 (v1)
Universe Tag
Rawhide Kid #36a (v1)
Universe Tag
Rawhide Kid #36d (v1)
Universe Tag
Journey into Mystery #97b (v1)
Tales of Suspense #46 (v1)
Rawhide Kid #36a (v1)
Rawhide Kid #36d (v1)
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Issue Blurb
Alex Gentry has invented a suit consisting of micro quills that can dispatch a variety of small pellets from tear-gas to liquid cement. However he is disgruntled with his government salary and so armed with this small arsenal Alex Gentry has become a bank robber called the Porcupine!
Issue Detail Divider
Character Appearances
Main Characters
Ant-Man last appeared in Tales to Astonish #47 (v1). Ant-Man next appears in Tales to Astonish #49 (v1).
Wasp last appeared in Tales to Astonish #47 (v1). Wasp next appears in Tales to Astonish #49 (v1).
First Appearance
This is the first appearance by Porcupine in the mainstream continuity. Porcupine next appears in Tales to Astonish #53a (v1).
Equipment, Items & Vehicles
Ant-Man Cybernetic Helmet
Ant-Man Cybernetic Helmet last appeared in Tales to Astonish #47 (v1). Ant-Man Cybernetic Helmet next appears in Avengers #93 (v1).
Porcupine Armor
Porcupine Armor next appears in Captain America #130 (v1).
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Issue Notes
  There are no notes for this issue.

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Issue Review
There is no review of this issue.
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Issue Synopsis
There is not synopsis for this issue.

Issue Detail Divider
  TStarnes Says:    
  2011-10-25 09:45:41  
  Dumbest...looking suit....ever.  

  Redsvetz Says:    
  2011-10-25 10:52:11  
  Man, call me crazy. I know I've been quick to pull the trigger on bad costumes, but for some reason, I kinda dig ol' Porc. I love Ant-Man wallowing in the tub on the cover too.  

  thomassp74 Says:    
  2011-11-23 08:51:21  
  I agree with both of you. Lame costume, but I've always liked Porky for some reason. Not sure I like him being able to fly though.

Man, Pym's got a huge guest room behind his lab.

I can suspend disbelief enough to accept Ant-Man communicating with the ants and giving them orders, but now they're intelligent and carrying on conversations with Wasp?

Wasp is the best female character in the Marvel stable up to this point, and still one of the best to this day in my opinion.

Maybe Janet should try being forward and letting Henry know how she feels. haha

  superheroguy1 Says:    
  2012-05-24 11:19:16  
  The Porcupine? Seriously?  

  Dark_Knight93 Says:    
  2012-07-07 15:43:45  
  Tales to Astonish and Strange Tales are the breeding grounds of terrible villains, with this issue being no exception. At least Ant-Man and Wasp haven't fought any commies lately.  

  Agrippina Says:    
  2012-07-25 01:59:13  
  Every time I feel like I couldn't possibly like TtA less... Putting the sexism aside, Henry is a patronising prat in this one. Not one thank you to Janet, but plenty of insults!  

  Ice Says:    
  2012-07-26 22:36:25  
  Pym seems to get more and more stuffy and unlikable as his character is fleshed out. I'm guessing that's why so many people seem to not like him.  

  chrisWhite Says:    
  2012-08-01 22:34:19  
  Terrible villain mixed with an extra helping of condescension isn't helping Ant-Man/Tales to Astonish but at least Jan is slowly getting to be a stronger hero in spite of the characterization.  

  specialque Says:    
  2012-09-18 12:04:52  
  Why the hell doesn't ol' Porky here just drown Ant-Man by lightly pressing his finger down on him while he's in the tub? That dumbass deserved to have his plans foiled.  

  sputnix Says:    
  2012-10-02 13:56:28  
  this is now my favorite villain, I mean come on the porcupine how much more awesomely cheesy can a villain get?  

  cmp_doctor Says:    
  2012-10-19 22:17:08  
  I agree the suit looks horrible  

  Phantasmagoria Says:    
  2012-11-02 18:55:45  
  Wow, Jan is written REALLY sexist in this issue, as is Henry. Other than that, The Porcupine is incompetent in this story, and completely deserved to be beaten. I kind of like his costume though, especially the face mask.  

  Maidel Says:    
  2012-12-15 02:43:37  
  I'm starting to be torn over these issues. While I still really hate ant man and hate the massive plot hole riven stories thank surround him, I'm really starting to like the Janet/pym interaction which I'm finding really amusing.

The issues are still really terrible, I just wish the main bulk of the superhero bit was better written.

  edgar987 Says:    
  2012-12-29 20:02:04  
  Janet Van Dyne is awesome!  

  Dopey Says:    
  2013-02-14 18:10:23  
  Janet Van Dyne is my dream girl too. Yes, she's written like a ditz, but those are my faves anyway.

In the pairing, she's the only useful super hero[ine]. Regardless that Henry treats her like a child and gives her no thanks for rescuing him, she is the boot wearer in the equation. It's refreshing to see a girl who kicksa**and means business, as opposed to one who stands in the background and sticks her invisible foot out to trip up villains at her best.

This was Ernie Hart's last hurrah, as Stan Lee is about to start writing these TtA comics with his undivided attention. Hart didn't do such a bad job as Lieber did, but since the issue that introduced the Wasp, I haven't seen anything reach that level of enjoyment, so here's to some more astonishing tales in our future.

The porcupine? It's all been said already... Again, he'll be back more times than once for some reason. I agree that his flying ability is nonsense.

One star for Janet! Another star for Janet!

  TaoTaomona Says:    
  2013-02-16 10:53:28  
  1 star- Banter was horribly sexist, which is typical for this time period, but the idea of the Porcupine follows false assumptions, PORCUPINES CAN'T SHOOT ANYTHING! Also, artwork was very poor for Marvel standards. Heck, what happened?  

  rebelmswar Says:    
  2013-03-11 18:34:26  
  "Take an idea, no matter how diabolical... add opportunity, then sprinkle with ruthlessness and we have the birth of a new menace!!" H.E. Huntly, take a bow that man.

Someone needs to call Samuel L Jackson so he can chain Janet Van Dyne to a radiator and play blues to her. "I'd rather think about all the glamorous eligible males who must be working there! *sigh* I wish we had something to investigate down there." Mad with hormones, that girl at least needs a bucket of cold water thrown on her.

The Porcupine is not a bad villain for someone who looks like Chewbaccas fat sleep apnea suffering uncle. His use of slow lingering drowning in a bath tub to show his utter disdain for Ant-Man was inspired and much appreciated.

  Spider-Borg Says:    
  2013-03-14 17:21:09  
  This was going to be a 1-star issue for me until the second-to-last panel made me laugh so I added another star  

  littlebitzer Says:    
  2013-04-07 22:38:52  
  Bawww I kinda liked Henry Pym up till Janet came in... He didn't have a whole lot of character development, true, but there was something about him that I enjoyed.
Now I only see him being a jerk- especially towards Janet, who is awesome. I suppose he's putting up a wall and trying to prevent himself from falling in love with her, but he doesn't have to be so... cold.

I still don't understand why Ant-Man's enemies don't just... squash him... when they pick him up...

  Anonymous Says:    
  2013-04-22 10:43:32  
  Query: Why is there a bathtub in a government lab?  

  leisch Says:    
  2013-07-25 17:31:30  
  Good dumb fun with a mid grade villain. He knows enough to bring Ant Man to the brink by removing all his equipment.  

  rook420 Says:    
  2013-07-31 23:27:22  
  If the Ant-Man can retain his normal strength when small, why couldn't he have just pushed The Porcupines fingers apart when Hank was grabbed by them?  

  wedgeskywalker9 Says:    
  2013-09-18 17:19:18  
  As much as I'm growing to love Janet, everything about the Porcupine is just too dumb for me to handle. His backstory is the most generic we've seen yet, his costume is the stupidest we've seen yet, and he fights Ant Man with a pair of tweezers and a bathtub. Sorry, Jan, but there isn't anything anyone could do as long as Porcupine was going to stink this one up. 1/5.  

  Psychopat Says:    
  2013-10-19 22:44:49  
  One of the worst villain here... Henry and Janet are really sexist... my favorite girl at this point is Sue... even if she don't do much!  

  Tarquinnff3 Says:    
  2013-10-22 04:26:35  
  Unforgettable villain huh? Um, not really. This wasn't a very good issue, in my opinion. There have been much better issues and stories about Ant-Man and The Wasp up to this point. I'd recommend a skip on this one for noncompletionists.  

  marvelcomicslover Says:    
  2013-11-17 22:38:44  
  Unfortunately for me, I am compelled to complete the order, so I had to endure this comic. The art was ok. 1 star.  

  phogbear Says:    
  2014-01-14 11:39:38  
  The Ant-Man is no longer my least favorite comic in the order to read. The Wasp is making these Ant-Man stories slightly better than the Torch's stories. Unlike Sue, Janet is actually doing something.  

  MediocreMan Says:    
  2014-02-01 04:06:32  
  Am I the only one who thinks Ant-Man (and Wasp) would be much more effective against villainy if they just stayed his regular size? Wasp could still poke her needle at bad guys and Pym wouldn't have to worry about drowning in a freakin' bath tub.  

  Locust75 Says:    
  2014-02-07 16:25:14  
  2 stars for Porcupine. Who does get a better costume years later.

Bank Job - Pym should stick to test tubes and not security systems.

Alf - A funny scene of the guard dog noticing Ant Man.

Hindsight - If only the Porcupine used his atomic pellet on Ant Man instead of a bathtub!

'Nuff Said - "Where else does a bank robber belong but in a bank?"-Porcupine

  opusaug Says:    
  2014-02-17 00:38:07  
  Okay, so first we had Don Blake, M.D., God of Thunder and android manufacturer. Now we've got Henry Pym, Ph.D., biologist and burglar alarm technician. WTH?

Sorry, but the Porcupine is a dumb idea for a villain. Pym is a moderately fun character for a whole host of really bad reasons. Wasp is just plain awesome, and I love the art - Janet Van Dyne has to be the consistently best-drawn face in the Order. Three cheers for sexism in the 60s, three jeers for anachronism among 21st century comic-book readers in the comments. It all averages out to 3 stars.

  Bramwell Says:    
  2014-03-13 03:13:15  
  1. The splash panel art is excellent. The dialog....not so much
2. Good concept for a villain but he just looks terrible
3. The heist was well-scripted and executed
4. Same with putting Jan to bed and getting into the base
5. Alright, every sentence Jan says is a nagging annoyance
6. Very weak and abrupt ending
I wasn't expecting to like buy some of it was really good...3 stars

  zengosm Says:    
  2014-05-01 17:19:41  
  I like the cheesiness of Ant Man, but I don't like the sexism. I do like how Janet is a strong character and gets stuff done though.  

  rainbowsad Says:    
  2014-07-24 15:46:31  
  Not a good issue. Jan is a cool character who's actually helpful, and yet, the way she's written is just plain awful.  

  CosmicCostello Says:    
  2014-10-11 23:45:23  
  I hated The Wasp as a kid. She was annoyingly shallow, I thought. As an adult, I read her as a smart-ass woman who is intentionally bucking against society's version of a 'good girl.' She's the Joan Rivers of super-heroines, blatantly admitting her amorous feelings, her wealth and ability to have a good time doing whatever she wants be it swanky dinners or fighting supervillains. She don't care what ya thinks of her!

And like Plantman from Strange Tales, I love the Porcupine. Not because he's cool, but because he is so so horrible a "super" villain that I'm forced to read tales with him in them as examinations of his pathetic psyche. Frankly, most TtA Henry Pym stories are made much better if they're read as examinations of non-self-confident Henry Pym and all the loveable losers who choose him as their nemesis. ("No way I could fight Iron Man, but even *I* gotta be able to beat Ant-Man! I'm doing it! I shall become... a porcupine!")

The Wasp is the only self-confident person in the whole run! And these idiots, Pym and his villains alike, completely miss that in order to stay in their own twisted, self-fulfilling hells.

It's really the only way to get through these stories without shooting yourself they're so bad. Or are they? ;)

  J-Smack Says:    
  2015-01-29 11:11:35  
  Nope, it's going downhill again; Jan's hair is short once more. Also *SPOILER* as in, a few years down the line spoiler; I see the seeds of domestic being sewn--I know they probably didn't have that plot in mind, but it's sort of dark knowing it's coming and seeing these constant squabbles between Hank and Jan.  

  indypaul @ MediocreMan (original post):    
  2015-03-02 15:37:09  
  Came here to say exactly this. Each issue, I continue to ponder this exact sentiment.  

  rodyoungerblood Says:    
  2015-06-09 09:58:38  
  Ominous Porcupine suit. The sexual tension between the Wasp and Ant-Man is overwhelming.  

  jbb10499 Says:    
  2015-11-19 16:55:10  

  yack Says:    
  2015-12-23 14:33:38  
  I always hated dumb villains ...but I dig Porcupine.  

  gonzo Says:    
  2016-01-02 18:31:59  
  Yet another scientist who feels overlooked/underpaid turning to crime. Made lamer by that ridiculous looking suit. Especially cringe worthy dialogue between Hank and Jane. So bad. Just skip it.  

  J-hat Says:    
  2016-03-21 07:26:06  
  Not sure why everyone is always hating on the Ant-Man. Going this far in the order I can't think of any hero or villain that hasn't had "Cringe Worthy Dialogue".


  RobinHoodMtl Says:    
  2016-03-31 14:31:41  
  • That’s my line – “I bet if I had six legs, you'd like me better!” (Janet van Dyne)

  • When a scientist starts referring to himself in the third person, you know he’s about to turn to the Dark Side!

  • Not a very elegant villain. One must admit that the suit is effective though.

  • The Swiss Army quills are a bit too much!

  • What was in that gas that made Janet so obsessed! I want some! No wait… she was born this way!

  • What bugs me the most with Ant-Man (no pun intended), is that almost everything the hero does, he could do easier and faster if he were human size. That makes his powers virtually pointless, unlike the Wasp who turns this to her advantage.

  • Average story. 3 stars!

  Billstar2 Says:    
  2016-05-13 20:23:59  
  Not my favorite villian and I noticed he returns in a few issues so more time to learn to like him.

  KnuckIfYouBuckley Says:    
  2016-09-25 10:27:24  
  Ahead of this one I figured "Oh, a villain modeled after a porcupine, he must only show up once" only to learn that no, he will be making appearances in the future. Agree with others that it's almost like Strange Tales and Tales to Astonish are at a race to the bottom to see who can come up with the lamest villains.  

  kent18 Says:    
  2016-11-06 04:33:37  
  "You and your old ants! I'll bet if I had six legs, you'd like me better!"

Whatever happened with Korr last month in the space behind the kitchen sink *stays* in the space behind the kitchen sink, Jan baby.

  philvt101 Says:    
  2017-04-02 21:36:29  
  Porcupine shoulda flushed Ant Man down the toilet instead of dropping him in the tub.  

  Allencthulhu Says:    
  2017-06-11 21:04:05  
  And we get only the second Ant-Man villain that I like. Hooray for Porky Pine.  

  CrazyforRAMU Says:    
  2017-07-19 15:09:12  
  Watching the 60s Bullpen try to write a flirtatious adventuring partnership is just painful. It's like these dudes are studying third-hand reports of 40s screwball comedies and coming to all the wrong conclusions about what makes romantic chemistry work.  

  bill_the_cat Says:    
  2017-12-20 20:11:43  
  Don't be hating the Porcupine. I can't say that he becomes awesome, but eventually he is written very well in at least one story line.  

  jennychan Says:    
  2018-01-13 19:01:42  
  The Porcupine had interesting motivations and unmasked looks like George Lucas. I liked him. He could have killed Pym easily as soon as he had him in hand.

I loved the dialogue from everyone in this issue. I really dig the Wasp. I didn't like her in the 1980s: did not know why she was leader of the Avengers, always flirted with everyone and was obsessed with her looks, and even made out with Magneto in Secret Wars #2. But now that I am experiencing her genesis, she really impresses me. I knew a few older males that had a crush on her, and now I know why they did- she was the first real exciting, tough female Marvel hero. She's a smart, feisty little thing. So much better than Pym.

  ScottG12 Says:    
  2018-04-21 05:42:18  
  I thought the villain was somewhat practical to begin with, it seemed more realistic than a man controlling trees with a magic hedgeclipper. However, the hypnotism lost me.. And not to mention Janet's character getting worse, and the fact that it's becoming increasingly clearer that Ant Man is just a dumb power because it makes everything so much harder than it needs to be. Atleast they introduced Giant Man in the next issue.  

Issue Detail Divider
Essential Ant-Man, Volume 1
This collection includes Tales to Astonish #35 (v1), Tales to Astonish #36 (v1), Tales to Astonish #37 (v1), Tales to Astonish #38 (v1), Tales to Astonish #39 (v1), Tales to Astonish #27 (v1), Tales to Astonish #40 (v1), Tales to Astonish #41 (v1), Tales to Astonish #42 (v1), Tales to Astonish #43 (v1), Tales to Astonish #44 (v1), Tales to Astonish #45 (v1), Tales to Astonish #46 (v1), Tales to Astonish #47 (v1), Tales to Astonish #48 (v1), Tales to Astonish #49 (v1), Tales to Astonish #50 (v1), Tales to Astonish #51a (v1), Tales to Astonish #52a (v1), Tales to Astonish #53a (v1), Tales to Astonish #54a (v1), Tales to Astonish #55a (v1), Tales to Astonish #56a (v1), Tales to Astonish #57a (v1), Tales to Astonish #58a (v1), Tales to Astonish #59 (v1), Tales to Astonish #60a (v1), Tales to Astonish #61a (v1), Tales to Astonish #62a (v1), Tales to Astonish #63a (v1), Tales to Astonish #64a (v1), Tales to Astonish #65a (v1), Tales to Astonish #66a (v1), Tales to Astonish #67a (v1), Tales to Astonish #68a (v1), Tales to Astonish #69a (v1)
Marvel Masterworks: Ant-Man/Giant-Man, Volume 1
This collection includes Tales to Astonish #27 (v1), Tales to Astonish #35 (v1), Tales to Astonish #36 (v1), Tales to Astonish #37 (v1), Tales to Astonish #38 (v1), Tales to Astonish #39 (v1), Tales to Astonish #40 (v1), Tales to Astonish #41 (v1), Tales to Astonish #42 (v1), Tales to Astonish #43 (v1), Tales to Astonish #44 (v1), Tales to Astonish #45 (v1), Tales to Astonish #46 (v1), Tales to Astonish #47 (v1), Tales to Astonish #48 (v1), Tales to Astonish #49 (v1), Tales to Astonish #50 (v1), Tales to Astonish #51a (v1), Tales to Astonish #52a (v1)
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Date User Name Update
   January 29, 2018 TStarnes Added Porcupine Armor listing.
   January 29, 2018 TStarnes Added Ant-Man Cybernetic Helmet listing.
   November 22, 2017 TStarnes
   November 20, 2017 TStarnes
   June 19, 2014 TStarnes Changed comic details.
   June 19, 2014 TStarnes Changed comic details.
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