Super-Villain Team-Up #2


Poor Namor.

I love the whole concept of Super-Villain Team-Up so much. The idea of Dr. Doom and Sub-Mariner just teaming up and going on there own adventures just entertains me so much.

On one hand, you have the extremely self centered ruler of Atlantis. And his best friend (well, at least for this story’s purpose) is an egotistical mad scientist with an inferiority complex. It’s like the adventures of Cousins Larry and Balki, especially since Dr. Doom and Balki are eastern Europeans.

The second issue of this series has Namor by his longtime villains Attuma, Tiger Shark and the worst named villain in the history of comic books–Dr. Dorcas. His name is just s ridiculous as it sounds.

It’s up to Dr. Doom to save his bestest friend in the world, using a remote controlled camera masquerading as a fish to find his location. And with some help from Namor’s longtime love interest Betty Dean Prentis, the prince is rescued. During the ensuing facas, poor Betty gets hit fatally by a blast from Dorcas’ laser cannon. And this sets up the next issue, where we assume the Sub-Mariner gets a little savage.

The book is just what you would expect of a Marvel issue from the mid 1970s. It’s a fun story, sublimely over-the-top in all aspects. But what makes the book is the artwork; with a cover by Gil Kane and interior art by Sal Buscema, it’s just full of awesomeness.

So does Betty survive? Or at the very least, does Namor avenge her?

Who knows.

I don’t have Super-Villain Team-Up #3, but I would be happy to review it if one of you doesn’t mind passing it along.

Splash Page Saturday #9


I know this is late, so what? Last week was the fiftieth anniversary of the Fantastic Four’s debut! Hooray! Here’s a pinup by Jack Kirby featuring the Fantastic Four back in the Thing’s old neighborhood on Yancy Street.

And as usual, it’s a bad experience. You can see Dr. Doom up in the right corner, and he’s responsible for the welcoming graffiti. Happy anniversary!

30 Things I Like About Comics—#10 Namor the Sub-Mariner

Let’s face it–Namor is awesome. He’s technically both Marvel’s first super hero but the first of its mutant characters. Created back in 1939 by Bill Everett, he’s consistently been one of the best in comics.

In his earliest appearances, the half-Atlantean, half-human prince of Atlantis was an anti-hero. He was really arrogant and hated the surface world. He would get upset and rip the antenna off the Empire State Building. Sometimes he would flood Manhattan, sometimes brawl with the original Human Torch.

But sometimes, at the urging of his would-be policewoman Betty Dean, Namor would help the surface world, whether it be fighting the Nazis during World War II or catching criminals.

When Namor returned to comics in the 1960s they played up the fact that he was torn between two worlds. He wasn’t necessarily respected as the ruler of Atlantis because he was pink-skinned like the surface dwellers. He loathed mankind, because they didn’t respect him as a leader or the ocean. Namor is constantly at conflict with the world around him. To top it all off, he’s also completely self-absorbed. Why else would he run around in his green speedo for the last eighty years? Namor thinks–and knows–he’s royalty and constantly demands to be treated that way.

What makes Namor likable is how much he cares for Atlantis and his people, even though he is not truly one of them. His outbursts against the surface world are to protect them and their honor. He would do anything to ensure their survival, whether it’s ally himself with Doctor Doom and have them relocate to Latveria, or have them form a mutual protection with the mutants on Utopia at the urging of his former lover Emma Frost.

So to those of you who think Namor is just a more scantily clad version of Aquaman, think again.

30 Things I Like About Comics—#18 Spider-Man Ride @ Universal Studios Florida

Sorry this is so late, but I enjoyed my holiday weekend and got a little behind in this blog business. Today’s adventures are actually blog-worthy, so you’ll find out what I was up to.

Today’s thing is the Spider-Man ride at Universal Studios’ Islands of Adventure in Orlando, Florida. The whole section is themed like a city straight out of a comic book, with giant graphics of your favorite Marvel characters.

The highlight of this section of the park is the Amazing Adventures of Spider-Man, which is probably the closest any of us will ever get to being a super hero. The ride starts with you walking through the Daily Bugle building, which is filled with hidden referenced to Marvel’s history. After J. Jonah Jameson assigns you to get a Spidey story, your loaded into a vehicle and given 3D glasses.

Then things get real. Spidey’s worst villains have teamed up to make things dangerous, and its up to our friendly neighborhood wall-crawler to save the day.

The ride is a lot like Disney World’s Star Tours simulator, except the vehicle is open and moves on a track through various scenes projecting 3D images, combined with special effects like lasers, flame throwers and fog machines. Remember the tram vehicle? Well it shakes and spins to add to the effect, as well as an intense soundtrack.

This video does a better job describing everything that goes into this ride then I can. The visuals and effects are just amazing. Spidey also has his trademark sense of humor, which adds to the fun.

And at the end of the ride, make sure you look for the movie theater’s phone number. Make sure you give it a call after you get off the ride for some fun and chuckles.

In the Marvel section, there are some more standard low-tech theme park rides, like the Incredible Hulk Rollercoaster.(which is pretty crazy) and Storm’s Force Accelatron, a Mad Tea Party liked spinning ride themed after the X-Men.

Oh, then there was this thing–Dr. Doom’s Fear Fall. After walking through his lab and seeing Doombots, it is revealed that Dr. Doom is harvesting fear and terror from park attendees for his diabolical needs. After being strapped to a chair, this ride shoots you up 150 feet into the air and you bounce around for a good minute, going up and down. I was literally scared to death, screaming a string of obscenities that would make even Lobo blush.

And I don’t know if it was intentional or not, but all the ride attendants were from Latvia. How could I tell? All the theme park workers have their home town shown on their name tags. If they weren’t, then kudos to Universal’s costuming department for adding this extra bit of authenticity.

The Marvel section also features an Avengers decorated food court, and a gift shop filled with TPBs, toys, shirts and more.