In September 1975 Gloria Jones gave birth to Bolan's son, whom they named Rolan Bolan (although his birth certificate lists him as 'Rolan Seymour Feld'). That same year, Bolan returned to the UK from tax exile in the US and Monaco and to the public eye with a low-key tour. Bolan made regular appearances on the LWT pop show Supersonic, directed by his old friend Mike Mansfield and released a succession of singles, but he never regained the success of his glory days of the early 1970s. The last remaining member of Bolan's halcyon era T. Rex, Currie, left the group in late 1976. In early 1977, Bolan got a new band together, released a new album, Dandy in the Underworld, and set out on a fresh UK tour, taking along punk band The Damned as support to entice a young audience who did not remember his heyday barely five years previously.

Later in 1977, Granada Television commissioned Bolan to front a six-part series called Marc in which he hosted a mix of new and established bands and performed his own songs. By this time Bolan had lost weight, appearing as trim as he had during T. Rex's earlier heyday. The show was broadcast during the post-school half-hour on ITV earmarked for children and teenagers and it was a big success. One episode reunited Bolan with his former John's Children–bandmate Andy Ellison, then fronting the band Radio Stars.

Bolan's longtime friend and sometimes rival David Bowie was the final guest on the last episode of Marc. The two performed Bowie's song "Heroes" near the end of the show, and after Bolan's signoff, they began to play a bluesy song over the closing credits. Right as the vocals were about to begin, however, Bolan stumbled off the stage and out of the camera frame. Bowie's amusement was clearly visible, and the band stopped playing after a few seconds. With no time for a retake, the occurrence was aired. Another musical guest of note for the final posthumous episode (#1.6 or episode 6) of Marc was Generation X. Marc Bolan's quote about another artist "(SNIFF!) Supposed To Be As Pretty As Me" occurs during that episode while introducing Generation X and directly refers to their lead singer Billy Idol.