Murdock and Marvel: 1964

Comics Over Time

Feb 8 2024 • 59 mins

Episode 2 - Murdock and Marvel: 1964

On last week’s show we discussed the long history of Marvel Comics from 1939 to 1963. This week we finally see where Stan, Jack and the rest of the Marvel bullpen had been leading up to.  It's time to talk about 1964, and the debut of the World's Most Interesting Superhero – Daredevil!

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The Year in Comics

1964 was an eventful year in America, and many of the things going in politics and culture made their way into the comics.

New Comics, Creators & Characters

Big Moments

Best Selling Books... and Marvels

The Year in Marvel

By the start of 1964 most of the characters that would headline the Marvel Universe were already in place.  But there were still new characters and places to fill in, and 1964 added a number of Avengers and villains to the world.  Even as the cast of characters grew, though, Lee still had a limited number of monthly titles he could put out due to a restrictive distribution deal.  His solution?  Tales to Astonish would be divided in half, and would co-star the Incredible Hulk and Giant Man.  Later in the year Tales of Suspense would follow, with Cap and Iron Man sharing the title as of issue #59

Starts and Ends

New Characters

Who's in the Bullpen

  • ROOKIE OF THE YEAR: George Tuska

Stories to Remember

The Year in Daredevil

Appearances: Daredevil Issues 1-5, Amazing Spider-Man #16 and #18

  • The stories were all written by Stan Lee by art was by three different artists: Bill Everett for issue 1, Joe Orlando for 2-4, and Wallace “Wally” Wood for issue 5 – who’s announced in the title as the permanent artist.
  • Daredevil’s origin story (April 1964)
  • Nelson and Murdock law firm is formed right after Nelson and Murdock graduate college. Karen Page joins them as their assistant.
  • First cross over heroes/villain from another book, Thing/Fantastic Four and Electro in book 2 (Electro first appeared in Spider-Man #9)
  • Mostly single book stories involve Daredevil taking down the villain while hiding the fact he’s Daredevil from Nelson and Page.
  • Letters column added starting in book 4
  • Full page “pin-up” of Daredevil at the end of issue 5.

New Powers, Toys or Places

This Week's Spotlight: Daredevil #4 October 1964


Why We Picked This Story

The Takeaway

Daredevil and the Blind Community

Questions or comments

We'd love to hear from you!  Email us at or find us on Twitter @comicsoftime.



Music: Our theme music is by the very talented Lesfm.  You can find more about them and their music at

The Grand Comics Database: Dan uses custom queries against a downloadable copy of the GCD to construct his publisher, title and creator charts.

Comichron: Our source for comic book sales data.

Man Without Fear: Kuljit Mithra’s Daredevil site contains a staggering collection of resources about our hero, including news, interviews and comic details.

The American Comic Book Chronicles: Published by TwoMorrows, these volumes provide an excellent analysis of American comics through the years.  Because these volumes break down comic history by year and decade they are a great place to get a basic orientation on what is happening across the comic industry at a particular point in time.

Joshua and Jamie Do Daredevil: A fantastic podcast that does a deep-dive into Daredevil comics.  This ran from 2018-2020, and covered most of the first volume of Daredevil, and was a fun way to get an in-depth look at each issue of Daredevil from 1-377.

My Marvelous Year: This is a reading-club style podcast where Dave Buesing and friends chose important or interesting books from a particular year to read and discuss.  This helped me remember some fun and crazy stories, and would be a great companion piece to Murdock and Marvel for those who want more comic-story-specific coverage.


The following books have been frequently used as reference while preparing summaries of the comic history segments of our show.  Each and every one comes recommended by Dan for fans wanting to read more about it!

Licari, Fabio and Marco Rizzo.  Marvel: The First 80 Years: The True Story of a Pop-Culture Phenomenon.  London: Titan Books, 2020.  This book is sort of a mess, as the print quality is terrible, and Titan doesn’t even credit the authors unless you check the fine print.  It’s like this was published by Marvel in the early 60s! But the information is good, and it is presented in an entertaining fashion.  So its decent, but I would recommend you see if you can just borrow it from the library instead of purchasing.

Wells, John.  American Comic Book Chronicles: 1960-1964.  Raleigh: Two Morrows, 2015.  Not cheap, but a fantastic series that is informative and fun to read.

Wright, Bradford.  Comic Book Nation: The Transformation of Youth Culture in America.  Baltimore: Johns Hopkins University Press, 2001.  This is the revised edition.

Marvel Year By Year: A Visual History.  New York: DK Publishing, 2022.  The academic in my rails at using information from any work that doesn’t have an author credit, but this is a decent (if very surface) look at each year in the history of Timely / Marvel from 1939 to 2021.

Cowsill, Alan et al.  DC Comics Year by Year: A Visual History.  New York: DK Publishing, 2010.  Because its nice to occasionally take a peek at what the Distinguished Competition is up to.

Dauber, Jeremy.  American Comics: A History.  New York, W.W. Norton & Company, 2022.  An excellent, relatively compact history of the domestic comic industry from its 19th century origins through to recent 21st century developments.  An excellent successor to Bradford Wright’s Comic Book Nation.