Dedicated to the definitive superhero non-team.


Monday, February 29, 2016

Rainbow Connection

Incredible Hulk #267 (January 1982) had long sported one of my favorite covers of that series. While looking for back issues recently, I spotted Justice League of America #151 (February 1978), which featured a similar cover four years earlier. A key difference between the covers was that the JLA rainbow enveloped seven of Wonder Woman's teammates while Hulk's rainbow spotlighted his enemies.

Saturday, February 13, 2016

E.S.P.

Devil-Slayer's debut appearance established that the character's real name was Eric Simon Payne (Marvel Spotlight #33). Considering how few comic book characters ever receive a middle name, why did Devil-Slayer get a middle name off the bat?

I suspect that the initials E.S.P. were a subtle nod to the character's paranormal abilities. If my own extra-sensory perception was stronger, I might have figured this out a long time ago.

This image of Devil-Slayer originally appeared in The Official Handbook of the Marvel Universe.

Monday, February 8, 2016

Love Triangle

As manipulative as Moondragon could be, sometimes she was right. Take for example a biting remark she made about Iceman's attitudes toward women (New Defenders #132).

Moondragon: Mr. Drake, if you continue to demonstrate your subconscious hostility towards women, I'm afraid you'll never emerge from adolescence.

Although Iceman did not see himself this way, a pattern of chauvinism played out in his reactions toward Cloud. All of the New Defenders were startled at first when Cloud initially transformed from the woman they originally met (#123) into the form of a man (#136). Yet Iceman was particularly brusque whenever Cloud became male.

Iceman wanted to pursue a romantic relationship with the female Cloud and treated her male self as interference. The fact that Cloud typically was nude when transforming back and forth undoubtably made the situation all the more complicated for Iceman.

What Iceman couldn't fully accept, however, was that Cloud's female and male selves saw themselves as the same person—and that, male or female, Cloud's feelings toward Iceman were merely platonic.

In many ways, the situation with Cloud harked back to Iceman's earlier disappointment with Lorna Dane. During his time with the original X-Men, Iceman couldn't accept that Lorna Dane loved Havok instead of him. Rather, Iceman blamed Havok for interfering with his potential relationship.

This image of Cloud and Iceman comes from New Defenders #138.

Tuesday, February 2, 2016

Cold Shower

One of the first posts on this site looked back at a humorous remark Beast made about kissing Iceman before introducing him to the rest of the Defenders (#122).

Iceman discarded his Champions uniform and returned to simply wearing trunks, boots, and gloves as a member of the New Defenders. Although the hero might have looked more comfortable, his personal life remained deceptively complicated.

Soon after joining the New Defenders, both Iceman and Angel became sexually attracted to teammate Moondragon (#126). But those feelings were not real. The self-proclaimed goddess later revealed that she had been using her telepathic powers to plant those thoughts in the minds of both men (#140).

During his four-issue Iceman limited series, Bobby Drake was immediately drawn to a woman he bumped into on the street. But Bobby again was being played. The seemingly perfect Marge Smith (codenamed Mirage) had orchestrated this "chance encounter" to lure Bobby into using his Iceman powers against her father, the entity called Oblivion.

Marge Smith had no connection to Danielle Moonstar (the member of the New Mutants originally called Psyche, who would later use the codename Mirage).

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