In the most unsurprising news ever, George R.R. Martin has always been a passionate and vocal geek. Back when words like Targaryen, Joffrey, and direwolves were nothing more than gleams in Martin’s eyes, he was just like you and me: a fan. A fan with a crazy imagination and Really Big Feelings about all of the content he consumed, but a fan nonetheless.
Martin expected a lot from the things he loved, and wasn’t afraid to speak out when he thought his heroes were missing the mark. Way back in 1964, when Martin had but 16 Name Days, he wrote to Marvel and Stan Lee to express his feelings over a continuity error found in the Fantastic Four comic. He starts out his letter with high praise for the comic, using phrases like “sparkling script” and assuring the writers he was “swept away by the sheer magnificence” of the story. But where George R.R. Martin giveth, he must also taketh away. He doesn’t wait long in his letter to launch into an eagle-eyed critique on continuity in the comic. Martin points out it was never explained how the Red Ghost was able to escape after being trapped on the moon with his apes chasing after him in Fantastic Four #13, and then goes on to point out other continuity errors he noticed throughout the life of the comic. An image of his letter, which was published in Fantastic Four #29, recently surfaced on Imgur, and Vanity Fair broke the story.
Of course this isn’t the first time we’ve heard of Martin writing in to Marvel, but this is the first time we’ve seen him really poke holes in the story. I’m really not sure what I find more wonderful. The fact that George R.R. Martin has been this vocal of a fan since his youth, or the fact that he’s now having to field these types of questions—as well as our incessant cries for the next Game of Thrones book—on a daily basis. Either way, the anecdote kind of makes you love Martin a bit more.
Are you surprised to read this letter from 16-year-old George R.R. Martin? If you could ask Martin one question about something you’ve noticed from his books, what would it be? Let’s talk about it in the comments!
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