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Monday, May 25, 2009

As Seen on TV

One of their earliest foes used television as part of a disturbing attempt to manipulate the children of Earth. Using his muppet-like appearance to his advantage, the extraterrestrial named Xemnu was a hit on a Saturday morning kids' show (seen in Marvel Feature #3).

Through his popularity and mind-control abilities, the furry giant intended to lure hoards of children to a hijacked rocket, then use them to repopulate his planet. Beneath the surface of this offbeat tale was a serious message about the threat of child abduction.

Dr. Strange, Sub-Mariner, and the Hulk thwarted the plot. Although Xemnu's hypnotic powers could influence both children and adults, the Hulk's altered intellect was resistant. Xemnu returned in Defenders #12 and appeared briefly in #100.

Marvel Feature. Vol. 1. No. 3. June 1972. "A Titan Walks Among Us!" Stan Lee (editor), Roy Thomas (writer), Ross Andru (artist), Bill Everett (inker) Art Simek (letterer).
Before Bruce Banner ever overdosed on gamma rays, the monstrous Xemnu was billed as the "Hulk" in Journey into Mystery #62 (November 1960) and #66 (March 1961). To avoid confusion, the giant extraterrestrial later became "Xemnu the Titan."

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