Marvel Illustrated Swimsuit
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From 1991 through 1995, Marvel Comics published an annual magazine-sized Marvel Swimsuit issue featuring pin-ups and tongue-in-cheek articles. The first was titled Marvel Illustrated: The Swimsuit Issue, but subsequent issues were called Marvel Swimsuit Specials, probably to avoid litigation from Sports Illustrated, which has published an annual swimsuit edition for years.
Cover girls and pinups
- She-Hulk was the cover girl for the first issue released in 1991, which boasted such feature articles as "The Boys (and Girls) of Summer" and "The Super Olympics Down Under."
- Storm was the cover girl for issue #1, ("Take a Wakanda Wild Side") released in July 1992. She would go on to become the queen of Wakanda, marrying King T'Challa in 2006.
- Rogue was the cover girl for two issues: 1993 ("Big Fun on Monster Island") and 1995 ("Mad for Madripoor"), sharing the latter with Gambit.
- Sue Storm shared the cover with Namor ("Come to the Moon and View Heavenly Bodies") in June 1994.
Rogue's Swimsuit Pinup Page features pictures of scantily clad X-Men characters, some of which are taken from the Swimsuit Special issues. Mary Jane Watson-Parker (Spider-Man's ex-wife), the Wasp, and the Enchantress were also featured as pinups. The swimsuit issues also presented male pinups of such characters as Thor, the Hulk, the Punisher, and Tony Stark (Iron Man).
The Brothers Hildebrandt drew the preliminary sketch for the 1995 Marvel Swimsuit Special in which Rogue and Gambit appear. Tom Smith painted the watercolor illustrations of the Hulk and Tony Stark.
Inspiration and imitators
Amazing Heroes began producing swimsuit issues in 1990, which sold well in the direct market comic book stores, which along with Sports Illustrated inspired Marvel Comics. Although the Marvel Swimsuit magazine was discontinued after five years, it spawned many imitators such as Lady Death: Swimsuit from Chaos Comics, and Homage Swimsuit Special from Image Comics. Most of these were standard comic book size publications.
- The non-stop erotic thrills of the 1990s Marvel Swimsuit Specials by Cyriaque Lamar, io9
- "Marvel's swimsuit special". New Sunday Times. November 11, 1990. p. 19. Retrieved December 26, 2010.