Marvel Comics is the common name and primary imprint of Marvel Worldwide Inc., formerly Marvel Publishing, Inc.and Marvel Comics Group, is an American publisher of comic books and related media.In 2009, The Walt Disney Company acquired Marvel Entertainment, Marvel Worldwide's parent company.
Marvel's modern incarnation dates from 1961, the year that the company launched The Fantastic Four and other superhero titles created by Stan Lee, Jack Kirby, Steve Ditko and many others.
Marvel counts among its characters such well-known superheroes such as Iron Man, Captain America, Hulk, Thor, Spider-Man, Wolverine and Ant-Man, such teams as the Avengers, the Guardians of the Galaxy, the Fantastic Four, the X-Men and the Inhumans, with antagonists such as Doctor Doom, Red Skull, Green Goblin, Ultron, Doctor Octopus, Thanos, Magneto and Loki.
Most of Marvel's fictional characters operate in a single reality known as the Marvel Universe, with locations that mirror real-life cities.
Characters such as Spider-Man, the Fantastic Four, the Avengers, Daredevil and Doctor Strange are based in New York City, Martin Goodman, a pulp magazine publisher who had started with a Western pulp in 1933, was expanding into the emerging—and by then already highly popular—new medium of comic books.
As well, some comics' covers, such as All Surprise Comics #12 (Winter 1946–47), were labeled "A Marvel Magazine" many years before Goodman would formally adopt the name in 1961.
Goodman's comic book line dropped them for the most part and expanded into a wider variety of genres than even Timely had published, featuring horror, Westerns, humor, funny animal, men's adventure-drama, giant monster, crime, and war comics, and later adding jungle books, romance titles, espionage, and even medieval adventure, Bible stories and sports.Goodman began using the globe logo of the Atlas News Company, the newsstand-distribution company he owned, Atlas, rather than innovate, took a proven route of following popular trends in television and movies—Westerns and war dramas prevailing for a time, drive-in movie monsters another time—and even other comic books, particularly the EC horror line.Atlas also published a plethora of children's and teen humor titles, including Dan De Carlo's Homer the Happy Ghost (à la Casper the Friendly Ghost) and Homer Hooper (à la Archie Andrews).Launching his new line from his existing company's offices at 330 West 42nd Street, New York City, he officially held the titles of editor, managing editor, and business manager, with Abraham Goodman officially listed as publisher.Timely's first publication, Marvel Comics #1 (cover dated Oct.1939), included the first appearance of Carl Burgos' android superhero the Human Torch, and the first appearances of Bill Everett's anti-hero Namor the Sub-Mariner, Timely had its own staff in place by the following year.