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Wednesday, February 01, 2006

Johnny Sorrow is a Sick Fuck

Johnny Sorrow is one of the creepiest comic villains I have seen in a long time. I seriously believe that. He's a fascinating reject from Lovecraft who also happens to be a melodramatic ex-silent film star with a scary fixation on the hero who defeated/killed him.

A hero who also happens to be a kid.

So it shouldn't be any surprise really that I think the guy is a sick bastard. Especially given my particular subtextual reading of certain events. But it's not just that. He also has some really really creepy lines.

JSA 17:

"Dear Mr. Sendak is indisposed at the moment-- --but I would be more than happy to receive you."

(Hmph, I'd bet you would be.)

"Ah Sanderson, the decades have treated you well. All grim and grown up, are we? No longer Wesley Dodds' Golden Boy, I see."

(Christ man: that's like one step better than "Well, you've certainly grown up pretty, haven't you?" for creepy things a man shouldn't say to a kid he's had tied to a chair in an empty theatre.)

JSA 18:

"Hello, Sandy, it's so good to see you again-- --So awfully, terribly good."

(Okay, personally, I'd find that line creepy in any context. But Sorrow's not satisfied with that, he has to say while hovering above the kid's bed, about to kidnap him for dire purposes. Creepy.)

"Time to wake up, my fair haired child."


"I took the liberty of dressing you. I wanted you here in your official capacity."


"I wanted the Golden Boy."

(I'll bet you did.)

"Don't be frightened, child. The time for fear has passed."

(...yeah. Somehow I doubt the poor kid finds that reassuring.)

"Now Sandy, tell me, my Golden Boy. Where is your Spectre now?!"


(See, that'd be not so bad, if he weren't talking to the *adult*)

JSA 19:

(He's actually relatively restrained in 19. He gloats about his plan and has a captive in bondage on a stalagmite, but at least avoids the creepy innuendo!

That's it Sorrow, just keep manhandling the kid instead! It works much better! I'll try not to notice how infuriated you seem to get when the kid's talking back or laughing at you. Just keep away from the innuendo.)

JSA 20:

(This issue also is heavy on the bondage and hitting tied up victims but light on the innuendo. Much to my relief. In fact the creepiest line uttered isn't actually Sorrow's this time)

"That's it-- Take Sorrow's focus off commanding the King of Tears-- and just on you."

(Yeah, see, this is what we call a "martyr complex", Sand. Not to mention, it's really fucking creepy that the ploy worked. That Sorrow really *was* distracted from the King of Tears by the mere fact of his captive *laughing* at him. Dominating his captive is more important than a Lovecraft-reject Elder God. Creepy)

Virtue and Vice:

"Come now, Sand. Surely you haven't forgotten your old friend..."

(Welcome back, creepy guy!)

"Did you really think you could destroy me, Golden Boy."

(I shudder whenever Sorrow calls him that. Really. He makes it sound sleazy.)

"I made you a promise. I told you I would bring this world to its knees."

(This is creepy twofold. 1, because I'm internally about twelve and thus any reference to knees like that makes me have scary thoughts. and 2. We didn't *see* him make this promise in issues 17-20. Which means the scenes continued off-panel. Which I knew already had to, as it'd take Mid-Nite forever to climb that damn spire. But I was ignoring that muchly, thank-you-very-much.)

After that it gets too action packed for more creepy lines. And then he doesn't show up again for a long time, until JSA Classified 7 when they set him free. So he can lead the Injustice Society again. And be really fucking creepy again.

How wrong is it that I'm sorta looking forward to it?


  • At February 01, 2006 4:56 AM, Blogger Ragnell said…

    And how wrong is it that I just kept giggling through that entire post?

    But, Kali, you neglected to realize the other place he might've made the promise. In the JSA #18 flashback, when Sandy was kidnapped.

    But of course, that's worse, because it implies that Sandy was awake between the time he was snatched from his nice, warm bed and the time he was dressed up in his costume.

    And somebody stop me from looking at te art and breaking these scenes down panel by panel, because those two pages in JSA #20 have a lot of suggestive imagery.

  • At February 01, 2006 8:56 AM, Blogger Scipio said…

    I want the original Clayface, Basil Karlo, who is also a has-been film star to return, and I want him to be just like Sorrow.

  • At February 01, 2006 4:02 PM, Blogger kalinara said…

    ragnell: Very, you're evil. :-)

    And yeah, that's true. Especially since "I dressed you", as we said, has different connotations than "I changed your clothes"

    Stop you? Analyze away!

    scipio: They could start a Creepy ex-Actor Guild or something.

  • At February 01, 2006 4:20 PM, Blogger Bhotanni said…

    The problem with creepy villains is that they all get together at the creepy villains convention once a year in grenada.

    Muraki was probably only a mild mannored villain until he spoke with johnny sorrow one vile evening. Many nameless manga denisons were never the same after that namely Hisoka and Tsuzuki.

  • At February 01, 2006 6:08 PM, Blogger Centurion said…

    Scipio, I agree whole-heartedly with that notion.

  • At February 01, 2006 11:38 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    Heh, I'm now realizing that all this went past me when the story was published because I was intently seeking out the outing of Obsidian that was promised (and didn't happen).

  • At February 02, 2006 2:09 AM, Blogger kalinara said…

    lyle: Better late than never, I guess. :-)

    On both counts. :-)

  • At February 02, 2006 2:10 AM, Blogger kalinara said…

    bhotanni: And that's a fanfic I will never be writing, thank you. :-)

    Sorrow would have lost patience with Muraki and gone Gorgon on his ass a long time ago anyway.

  • At February 05, 2006 2:56 AM, Blogger Hale of Angelthorne said…

    Okay, well thanks for inserting a mental image into my brain that I couldn't remove even if I used a melon baller. Johnny Sorrow = Michael Jackson ((shudder))
    Even worse than the extended discussion I had with friends one time over just why super-stretching is truly the most gross, vile and heinous power imaginable.

  • At February 05, 2006 3:09 PM, Blogger kalinara said…

    I always rather liked how it was dealt with in Ultimate Fantastic Four actually. Lack of internal organs and all. :-)

    And welcome to my brain. If you think it's bad when someone else puts the idea in your head, you try *having* said idea in the first place. :-P

    If I have to go through this, so do you. :-)

  • At February 07, 2006 2:22 AM, Blogger Hale of Angelthorne said…

    Yeah, UFF handled stretching powers as realistically as you can get, but the power itself is still morbidly gross, and closer to certain grotesque Japanimation, than anyone cares to admit. I actually created a villain in an old Champions campaign with just this in mind. He ended up being so disturbingly creepy, he never appeared again.

  • At February 07, 2006 2:24 AM, Blogger kalinara said…

    Heh, sounds like a blast! :-)

  • At September 28, 2010 1:09 PM, Anonymous Viagra Online said…

    Johnny Sorrow is the best comic villain because he combines passion with creepy stories that's the perfect mix.


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