Dedicated to the definitive superhero non-team.


Monday, January 25, 2021

Neutral Evil: Purple Man

Daredevil #4 marked the first appearance of Zebediah Killgrave (a.k.a. The Purple Man). With the power to control minds, Killgrave would make a career forcing others to do his bidding. Both methodical and self-serving, the vindictive supervillain demonstrated characteristics of the Neutral Evil alignment from Dungeons & Dragons.

  Lawful Good    Neutral Good    Chaotic Good  
  Lawful Neutral    True Neutral    Chaotic Neutral  
  Lawful Evil    Neutral Evil    Chaotic Evil  
Daredevil was the first person with willpower enough to resist the Purple Man. This panel from Daredevil #4 shows the hero in a precarious position. As attorney Matt Murdock, the the court appointed him to defend Killgrave. One could make the argument that Murdock followed one alignment (Lawful Good) when practicing law and adhering to a professional code of ethics but veered outside that alignment (toward Neutral Good) as the costumed crimefighter Daredevil.

Sunday, January 24, 2021

Lawful Evil: Ytitnedion

Tunnelworld, perhaps more than any other dimension visited by the Defenders, would make and apt setting for Dungeons & Dragons. That being the case, the realm deserves attention in a discussion about the nine alignments outlined in that game.

A principal antagonist within Tunnelworld was Ytitnedion, a sorcerer from a race of Buzzard People. Ytitnedion employed magic to create a race of Winged Ones soley to inflict misery upon them. Ytitnedion also commanded a powerful army to do his bidding, in service of an unnamed evil. All things considered, the oppressive regime adhered to the alignment of Lawful Evil.

  Lawful Good    Neutral Good    Chaotic Good  
  Lawful Neutral    True Neutral    Chaotic Neutral  
  Lawful Evil    Neutral Evil    Chaotic Evil  
This panel from Defenders #82 features the evil sorcerer Ytitendion and the heroic Aeroika, a member of the Winged Ones who served as a guide to the Defenders during a trip to Tunnelworld.

Friday, January 15, 2021

Lawful Neutral: Project PEGASUS

In the world of Marvel Comics, Project PEGASUS (Potential Energy Group/Alternate Sources/United States) was a sizeable research center operated by the U.S. Department of Energy. Quasar was the first costumed crimefighter hired to protect the facility, where scientific inquiry included the study of super-criminals with energy powers. Even with heroes and villains involved, research was the guiding objective. As such, Project PEGASUS would qualify as Lawful Neutral under the alignment structure of Dungeons & Dragons.

  Lawful Good    Neutral Good    Chaotic Good  
  Lawful Neutral    True Neutral    Chaotic Neutral  
  Lawful Evil    Neutral Evil    Chaotic Evil  
Quasar gives Thing a tour of Project PEGASUS in this panel from Marvel-Two-In-One #53. The supervillain Silas King (also known as Solarr) went into custody at the research station following his appearances in Defenders #42-43. Project PEGASUS had no connection to Valkyrie's horse Aragorn or other winged horses.

Thursday, January 14, 2021

Neutral Good: Black Knight

Giant-Size Defenders #2 reprinted an adventure of the Black Knight originally published in 1955. Set during the time of King Arthur, this version of the character battled treacherous forces while masking his true identity. To throw enemies off guard, Sir Percy of Scandia feigned cowardice under ordinary circumstances … until suiting up as the mysterious Black Knight.

Dieties & Demigods, a sourcebook for Advanced Dungeons & Dragons, described King Arthur as the alignment Lawful Good. The Black Knight's clandestine chivalry, on the other hand, would more closely fall under the ethos of Neutral Good, the alignment that Dieties & Demigods ascribed to Merlin the magician. Merlin was the only one who knew Sir Percy was the Black Knight.

The modern superhero Black Knight, who appeared in early issues of the Defenders, was descended from the original version of the character.

  Lawful Good    Neutral Good    Chaotic Good  
  Lawful Neutral    True Neutral    Chaotic Neutral  
  Lawful Evil    Neutral Evil    Chaotic Evil  

Wednesday, January 6, 2021

Chaotic Evil: Foolkiller

Following in the footsteps of a costumed assassin called Foolkiller (Man-Thing #3-4), a self-appointed successor adopted the Foolkiller persona and granted himself poetic license to murder anyone he deemed a fool. For his first target, the new Foolkiller assassinated the supervillain Blockbuster (Omega the Unknown #9).

Foolkiller next arrived at Nighthawk's ranch intent on murdering the serial killer Lunatik (Defenders #73), only to attack the Defenders for looking foolish in a recent televised documentary. Foolkiller escaped from the heroes but not without setting fire to their headquarters (#74-5). Foolkiller's idiosyncratic criteria for dispensing violence would fit with an interpretation of Chaotic Evil using the alignment system from Dungeons & Dragons.

  Lawful Good    Neutral Good    Chaotic Good  
  Lawful Neutral    True Neutral    Chaotic Neutral  
  Lawful Evil    Neutral Evil    Chaotic Evil  

Saturday, January 2, 2021

Chaotic Neutral: Hedy Wolfe

The alignment sytem popularized by Dungeons & Dragons is worth revisiting, as each of the nine alignments can encapsulate a variety of characters. Often represented as a grid (with Lawful versus Chaotic, with Good versus Evil, and with Neutral tendencies in-between), the alignments describe competing values and potential sources of conflict among characters.

  Lawful Good    Neutral Good    Chaotic Good  
  Lawful Neutral    True Neutral    Chaotic Neutral  
  Lawful Evil    Neutral Evil    Chaotic Evil  

Before she became Hellcat, Patsy Walker appeared in teen romance comics, often sharing the spotlight with classmate Hedy Wolfe. In these stories, Hedy could be spontaneous and abrasive, while envious of Patsy's popularity. Balancing between friend and rival, Hedy's up-and-down disposition would seem Chaotic Neutral.

This take on Hedy Wolfe held true with grown-up depictions of the character, including Marvel Fanfare #59, when Patsy Walker returned to her hometown of Centerville to reunite with old acquaintances. Patsy, like many of the Defenders, would lean toward Chaotic Good.

Patsy and Hedy starred together in a series that spanned most of the 1950s and 1960s.

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