Pretty, Fizzy Paradise

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Sunday, January 16, 2011

So group question...

What, in your opinion, is the worst concept for a superhero in DC or Marvel (or Indy, I suppose, but there's a lot less likelihood that I'll know what you're talking about)?

For me, I think it's still X-23. I won't say I hate the character, not like I do Gambit, and there have been times in group comics where the character has even made me chuckle a bit. And I've always thought there was an interesting element in the conflict between Cyclops and Wolverine over her role in X-Force, namely because, for all that she's Wolverine's clone/daughter, in a certain way, she's got a lot more in common with Scott than Logan. (For example: choosing to become a living weapon as an adult is a lot different than essentially being raised as one.)

But even granting that the character has potential, can be amusing, and has some good writers behind her, I still can't really get beyond the whole "female clone of Wolverine with history of prostitution and toe claws" thing.

Yeah, it's just kind of one of those things, y'know?


  • At January 16, 2011 10:38 PM, Anonymous Andrew Weiss said…

    I don't think they come any worse than Bloodlines' Jamm.

  • At January 16, 2011 11:48 PM, Blogger Skye said…

    I haven't read X-23's backstory yet - it's in the shelf waiting - but the prostitution thing seems really odd to me. Like, the character was introduced as part of a children's cartoon, but then they had to make her darker and edgier for the comics? and of course that means SEXUAL ABUSE OF SOME KIND. I'm reserving final judgment until I read it all, but I have an icky feeling about it already.

    (Like your comparison to Scott, though, as far as the childhood.)

    As for your main question, um, Cable? His mutant powers are telepathy and telekinesis and a metal arm and being from the future and big fuck-off guns and possibly some other stuff all smashed together? Like, is there even a concept here, or did we just throw everything we could at him to see what would stick?

  • At January 17, 2011 12:24 AM, Blogger kalinara said…

    Basically yes, but that's part of being a Summers, I think. :-P

  • At January 17, 2011 1:21 AM, Blogger BDS said…

    Sentry. The making of the Avengers into a Marvelized Justice League was bad enough, but then the creation of "Superman" came with it. His back story was weird and weak. He was the most powerful, yet it was how many issues until he actually did something. It was more of an, "we wrote ourselves into a corner, have Sentry get us out." Just seemed like a waste of character space.

  • At January 17, 2011 3:34 AM, Blogger Eyz said…

    Cable has the most complicated backstory ever!
    Like he was born from Cyclops and a parralel Jean Grey, sent to the future to grow up in a war, then..huh..lived in the past defeating Apocalypse every time he almost rised to power, then the future again..or the past?..?!?

    I keep forgetting about that whole prostitution part of X-23 unnecessary...
    (apart to create some obscure past events like Wolvie?)

  • At January 17, 2011 4:41 AM, Blogger kalinara said…

    I think my favorite part of Cable's backstory is the twelve years Scott and Jean spent raising him in the post-apocalyptic future (literally), and Slym Dayspring basically single-handedly started an entire guerilla war against Apocalypse.

    I always wished they'd bring that up more often because it's awesome.

  • At January 17, 2011 4:07 PM, Blogger SallyP said…

    The New Guardians that they came up with in Millenium. I actually enjoyed reading Millenium, but I only read it long after it had come out, and laughed myself sick through the whole thing.

    But the whole build up to...those guys? And then they were practically never heard from again. Rather similar to Bloodlines, in a way.

  • At January 17, 2011 4:11 PM, Blogger Tom Foss said…


    Lightning Comics, best known in my mind for the "Hellina" nude variant cover that had to be polybagged with the naughty bits covered, devised a very '90s superhero whose blood caught fire when exposed to oxygen. And who also had AIDS. Yeah.

    There's also George Perez's "Crimson Plague," featuring DiNA, whose blood was corrosive and whose menstruation could wipe out a planet. Uncomfortable symbolism there, too, but not really a "superhero."

  • At January 17, 2011 11:30 PM, Blogger notintheface said…

    Penance, hands down. This was made worse by the fact that he used to be Speedball.

    To me, that character symbolized everything WRONG with superhero comics in the 2000's. A fun, zany character turned dark and emo. Just what we needed. It was like they took Speedball and gave him a fun-ectomy.

  • At January 17, 2011 11:38 PM, Blogger notintheface said…

    I used to call Penance "the S&M Hero" because his power came from feeling pain, so he donned a costume patterned after an iron maiden, with small spikes perpetually pricking his skin. One representing every death at Stamford in "Civil War". Can you see why I hated him so much? When Karla Sofen finally drugged him and carted him off, I cheered.

  • At January 18, 2011 2:36 PM, Blogger SallyP said…

    I didn't even think of Penance...but that's an awfully good one. Er...for being terrible that is.


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