Wednesday, March 22, 2017

Retro Foreign: Philippine Marvel Special Edition #2: The Empire Strikes Back

Vintage Philippine Star Wars comics are among the rarest Star Wars comics in the world.  The Philippine edition of Marvel Special Edition #2: The Empire Strikes Back is an example.  One copy that has found it's way into my collection is from a posting in Joel Reyes Noche's blog titled Marvel Super Special #16.  If you compare the front cover of his copy to the picture I have taken of the book in my possession, it is clear these are the same exact comic.

Marvel Special Edition #2: The Empire Strikes Back a - Alemar's?, Philippines (1980 - 1985?)
contains Marvel Super Special #16
I have a second copy which is even more beat up with a detached front and back cover and has the blank price box colored in with a black marker.

Marvel Special Edition #2: The Empire Strikes Back a - Alemar's?, Philippines (1980 - 1985?)
contains Marvel Super Special #16
2nd copy
Like it's U.S. counterpart, it is treasury-sized.  There is a blank white box where the price, issue number, and packager name is on the U.S. edition.  There is a U.K. edition of this comic which is another variation of this; it keeps the issue number and packager name with only the price removed.  The interior pages are reprinted from Marvel Super Special #16, not from Marvel Special Edition #2 which is apparent when looking at the title page.  Like the Alemar's Star Wars #1 - 4, this comic is published in English.

Marvel Special Edition #2: The Empire Strikes Back a - Alemar's?, Philippines (1980 - 1985?)
title page
I am speculating this book was published by the Alemar's bookstore chain based on a response found in Noche's posting and a stamp found on the cover of my second copy:

I use to own a copy that was bought in Alemars. This one was of my first comic books.

Marvel Special Edition #2: The Empire Strikes Back a - Alemar's?, Philippines (1980 - 1985?)
Alemar's stamp
An argument against it being an Alemar's exclusive is there is no ad in this comic for Alemar's.  Like all the Philippine Star Wars comics I have in my collection, these comics are extremely worn with one copy structurally sound and the other not.  Despite the wear, I am happy to have these specimen in my collection.

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