Armagideon Time

Archive for the ‘Nobody’s Favorites’ category

It’s the dawn of 1966 and a truly glorious era for superhero funnybooks. The Fantastic Four were up against the planet-devouring power of Galactus, Captain America had run afoul of the ferocious feet of Batroc the Leaper, and the mighty Thor was reeling from a disastrous defeat at the hands of Hercules. Meanwhile, over on […]

As the first wave of the translated manga gained traction in the North American direct market in 1987, so too did a number of home-grown works pop up to homage and/or parody these “strange” and “exotic” funnybooks from the Land of the Rising Sun. Eclipse Comics, one of the first and most prolific purveyors of […]

The news that DC was going to use the Zero Hour event to stage a hard reset of the Legion of Super-Heroes franchise, I seriously considered dumping the associated titles from my pull list. Even though the grimy and gritty charm of the “Five Years Later” era had worn thin after the resolution of the […]

Mark Gruenwald once stated that “every character is somebody’s favorite,” and this feature was launched to stress test the validity of the late Marvel continuity guru’s theory. From the beginning, I took pains to distance what I did here from the facile “Mort of the Month” nonsense which characterized so many write-ups of the obscure […]

There are some comics and characters whose inclusion as Nobody’s Favorites bring me a certain degree of guilt. Mocking the unabashedly lousy one thing. Performing a post-mortem on a sincere effort gone sour is another, grimmer, matter entirely. Yet no matter how much I wish things had turned out otherwise, the damnation of faint praise […]

Dazzler may have been Marvel’s most famous roller disco themed character, but she was not the first. That dubious and dated honor goes to the heelie-rockin’ heel known as… …Blue Streak. A member of SHIELD’s short-lived “Super Agents” initiative, Blue Streak was pure and simple roster fodder built around a harried writer’s asking himself “What […]

Sometime in the early months of 1985, a young writer struggled against a looming deadline. The story outline for the upcoming Peter Parker, The Spectacular Spider-Man annual was due the following morning, and the stressed scribe could not think of a single workable concept. The paralytic grip of writer’s block was made even worse by […]

Riddle me this, faithful readers: When is a funnybook not a funnybook? The correct answer is “when said funnybook is The Fury of Firestorm Annual #2.” I suppose a little context is in order. For some reason (my guess would be “cheap bastardy”), the newsstand where I used to purchase new comics as a tweener […]

Perhaps you’ve wondered how things would have turned out if Dashiell Hammett had looked at an early draft of The Maltese Falcon and said “You know what? Let’s make the titular McGuffin into a mystical artifact that transforms Sam Spade into a goofy looking energy being who zooms around but doesn’t really do anything. Oh, […]

When it comes to hobbies which lend themselves to effective supervillainy, the art of juggling is right down there next to philately and marigold cultivation. It’s not that I’m impugning the quick-thinking and manual dexterity of juggling enthusiasts, it’s just that it’s difficult to perceive an appropriate aura of menace from something I reflexively associate […]

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