Thursday, July 31, 2014

The Marvel Super Heroes Podcast Episodes #2-3

I love my Martian Manhunter blog, but this podcast thing has been pretty awesome so far, and I'm going to be too busy seeing Guardians of the Galaxy tomorrow to generate content tonight...

Marvel Cosmics & Warlock (2004)

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Note: We like our language NSFW salty, and there be spoilers here...


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Face Front, True Believer! The world renowned San Diego Comic-Con International held its 2014 gathering this past weekend, and our vociferous speakers Diabolu Frank and Illegal Machine have graciously spent a half an hour discussing the scintillating revelations of this momentous occasion in a bonus second episode of the week for the comic book faithful, totally free of charge to you! Now you can't complain that you have nothing to do while standing in line during the Thursday "midnight" debut showing of the most magnificent motion picture in film history, Marvel's Guardians of the Galaxt! How's that for service, effendi?

As you can tell, we love a fierce conversation and a pretty picture, so why don't you socialize with us, either by leaving a comment on this page or...

Wednesday, July 30, 2014

Brad Devon

Devon, pictured at center, flanked by two members of his gang.

Brad Devon and his gang attempted to extort a poor performance from Big Bob Michaels as he pitched for the Flamingos baseball club against the Wonders, but was thwarted and arrested by Detective John Jones in one of his earliest cases. Appeared in Detective Comics #226 (December, 1955).

Quote: "It's not the weather! He's got another kind of heat on him! If he tries to win this one, it's the end of his career!"

Created by Joe Samachson and Joe Certa

Tuesday, July 29, 2014

The Man-Thing That Unearthed Secrets vs. The Animal-Vegetable-Mineral Man

“Driftwood” Dagan
Debut: 1965
Nemesis: Martian Manhunter
Other Major Foes: Zook
Appearances: One comic story
Powers: Shapeshifter.

A drifter who was zapped by the idol-head, then transformed into various creatures in search of a hidden artifact. Forms included a man-sized mole, a mammal with a steel screw power drill nose, a massive condor with spontaneously combustion feathers, a colossal winged caterpillar, and a giant weasel.

Vile Menagerie Stats
Win: 0
Lose: The Giant-Maker (0-4)
Draw: 0


Sven Larsen
Debut: 1964
Nemesis: The Doom Patrol
Other Major Foes: None
Appearances: 20+ comics and a cartoon appearance.
Powers: Giant-sized hybrid human being made up of ambulatory wood, gemstone, and a dinosaur, allowing him plant control, claws, rock protrusions, super-strength and relative invulnerability.

Bio: Scientist and former student of Dr. Niles Caulder who fell into a vat and came out with the ability to turn into any animal, vegetable, or mineral, often several at once. Turning these powers against the Chief, Larsen was repeatedly beaten by the Doom Patrol, often through his own anti-decay ray.

Vile Menagerie Stats:
Win: 0
Lose: 0
Draw: 0

Idol Speculation:
As much as I hate the slaughter the Idol-Head has seen in these matches, often erroneously in my opinion, this one was based far more on similarly tortured titles than fairness. The Animal-Vegetable-Mineral Man devours the competition with his T-Rex head.

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Monday, July 28, 2014

Superman & Bugs Bunny #1-4 (2000)

The last of the Do-Dos "used to be the lord high muck-a-muck of a place called Wackyland," playing pranks with its magical powers. When encroaching seriousness put the kibosh on its fun, the Do-Do used a dimensional transporter to pull pranks on Looney Tunes Earth. Again, life became too weird and complicated for the Do-Do to have any fun, so it tried to move again, and ended up meeting Bugs Bunny and Elmer Fudd. With a bit of help, the Do-Do reached the 5th dimension at the same time Mr. Mxyzptlk had been banished from DC Earth, and the two mixers decided to team up for trouble. The best gag they came up with was sending the Looney Tunes to DC Earth, where they wrecked havoc.

The Flash raced with Speedy Gonzales, Beaky Buzzard buzzed Wonder Woman's invisible plane, and so forth. Martian Manhunter was forced to stop the Tasmanian Devil from eating people. "MMMM! Lawyer am good food! Taste just like weasel!"

After further hijinks, the JLA and Looney Tunes teamed-up to make things right. Bugs Bunny noted of J'Onn "I was that shade of green once! Got hold of a batch of bad carrots!" The Alien Atlas expressed concern about the association. "I don't know! This could be-- will be-- dangerous," but Superman made the lot honorary members of the Justice League of America anyway.

The extended JLA split up, and the Martian Marvel joined Wonder Woman, Aquaman, Sylvester, Tweety, Yosemite Sam and Porky Pig in tackling a giant toy dragon that was busting into a bank. "Not if I have anything to say about it!" Except this dragon breathed flames. "Fire... my dread weakness... losing consciousness..." J'Onn went down and his League friends were seized in red paws. The mechanical menace didn't bother with the Tunes, who mostly cowered, but an heroic Tweety flew up its nose. The human operators within remained dismissive, until Tweety began jerking the controls.

Porky helped J'Onn up. "M-M-Mister M-M-Martian M-M-M-Manhunter-- are you o-k-k-k-kay?" The shocked Sleuth asked what the dragon was doing. Sylvester believed "Looks like the Macarena to me!" Wonder Woman broke free and lassoed the operators as they tried to escape Tweety. Diana asked for a way to show they gratitude, but all Tweety wanted was a way home. The recombined Looney League helped Daffy Duck arrest the Toyman. Finally, the Do-Do turned on Mr. Mxyzptlk so he could permanently separate the worlds and have the DC Universe all to itself for pranks galore.

That's All Folks! Thanks to Mark Evanier, Joe Staton, Tom Palmer & Mike DeCarlo!

Sunday, July 27, 2014

High Gate Bridge

The High Gate suspension bridge in Middletown U.S.A. was the site of the attempted murder of Detective John Jones but hirelings of Killer Fisk during one of his first recorded cases. After falling a perilous distance, Jones discretely transformed into the Manhunter from Mars and carried himself over the water to safety.

First Appearance: Detective Comics #227 (January, 1956)

Friday, July 25, 2014

Thursday, July 24, 2014

2014 “Top 10 Justice League Members” article by Jerry Whitworth

Click To Explore

Following “Heart of Justice: The Manhunter from Mars”, columnist Jerry Whitworth offers a similarly Alien Atlas favorable piece for Comic Art Community. His tastes skew toward a very Silver Age/first-in-last-out selection for the top of the team, which I can roll with, especially with an underdog favorite like the Atom making the cut. Whitworth doesn't offer rationales for his rankings, and while they do somewhat mirror the top picks poll by inclusion, the ranking is off. I could almost allow for the Flash, but hell freezes over before Green Arrow outranks Wonder Woman in anything but archery (maybe!) Still, I can't fault his logic in choosing the very best Leaguer ever, as you can see for yourself.

Wednesday, July 23, 2014

Icicle vs. The Fireball-Creature

The Fireball Nightmare
Debut: 1965
Nemesis: Martian Manhunter
Other Major Foes: Zook
Appearances: One comic story
Powers: Extremely inflamed.

Released by the idol-head, it set fire to part of a forest, and had to be sent to an alien world to chill out.

Vile Menagerie Stats
Win: 0
Lose: The Giant Watery Hand of Gilgana (1-3)
Draw: 0


Dr. Joar Mahkent
Debut: 1947
Nemesis: Green Lantern Alan Scott
Other Major Foes: JSA/JLA
Appearances: 50+ comics.
Powers: Freeze Gun

Bio: Evil scientist, member of the Injustice Society of the World and father of the second Icicle.

Vile Menagerie Stats:
Win: 0
Lose: 0
Draw: 0

Idol Speculation:
Neither of these characters are exactly household names, though Icicle should be known to the DC faithful through the JSA and his more famous son. Regardless of how boring and underutilized the Fireball-Creature may have been sharing its one comic story appearance with a more fanciful monster, this nightmare is in a whole other league of power that Icicle can't tolerate.

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Tuesday, July 22, 2014

2014 “Piccolo Vs Martian Manhunter” fan art by decoyOctopusX

Click To Enlarge

"I figured since Piccolo could split into multiple forms Martian Manhunter would be able to also. Just a quick sketch I had to get out of my head. Used Gimp and a wacom tablet. I prefer drawing on paper. Just do a lot sloppier job on the comp."

The Marvel Super Heroes Podcast Begins!

Aside from denying the Martian Manhunter the sweet, sweet launch push potential of a solo ongoing series in September of 2011, the New 52 has treated J'Onn J'Onzz reasonably well. Unlike my blogging buddies at The Aquaman Shrine and Firestorm Fan, my hero was not officially dead when I started this blog. In late 2007, the Sleuth from Outer Space had just received his first Showcase Presents volume, had recently wrapped up a prominent role in the World War III and Justice mini-series, and was still appearing regularly in JLA: Classified and Justice League Unlimited. True, a year earlier the Alien Atlas had been dumped from all contemporary in-continuity Justice League series for the first time since 1992 (which was retconned away through Bloodwynd, so really more like 1984.) His 8-issue mini-series was a dud, and even a flirtation with founding a new Outsiders line-up fizzled out, but things could have been worse. Yes, he was murdered in 2008, but he'd been resurrected by 2010, and traded out his silly Coneheadhunter redesign for a featured role in the very popular Brightest Day biweekly maxi-series while sporting a more classic look. Since the New 52, Martian Manhunter has gotten a nifty new costume, done a tour with Stormwatch, beaten up the JLAers that forgot him, and joined a couple of satellite Leagues, including the first ever Canadian branch.

Despite Manhunter doing okay for himself, I've been growing more bitter with and disengaged from DC Comics since the turn of the century. I like to think of myself as an amateur comics historian, but after setting up five DC-themed blogs and running them with widely varied regularity/quality, I'm rather put out that all that continuity I memorized and memorialized got tossed out with the rubbish. This blog has made a small blip in awareness about the minor lore that encircles the Manhunter from Mars, but my other efforts haven't even had a fractional benefit in comparison to that dubious accomplishment. I'm feeling terribly burnt by and burned out with the DC Universe, so for the most part, my blogging has contracted to this venue and semi-weekly reviews at ...nurgh... I don't have the energy or see the point of working beyond that anymore.

On the other hand, the Marvel Cinematic Universe has done wonders for revitalizing my early love of their comics, and while there remain considerable flaws in the narrative that have often worsened since I jumped ship for DC in the early '90s, I still find myself wanting to engage more with Marvel stories. I've also had an itch to try podcasting for a while now, so I recently enlisted my two best friends to do some heavy duty recording sessions. The result is our new weekly effort, The Marvel Super Heroes Podcast. Between the podcast and my behind-the-scenes work on 2015 posts in anticipation of the Martian Manhunter's 60th anniversary, I recognize this blog has suffered somewhat, but I'm also still invested and looking to the future with J'Onn J'Onzz. I just want to explore other realms, as well.

I encourage readers to give the podcast a chance. Episode Zero reintroduces myself in audio form and my two best friends as we discuss our childhood favorites Captain America, Iron Man and the Hulk, as well as how we got into the comic book medium. The just released Episode #1 focuses on the first ever Marvel (anti-)hero, Namor the Sub-Mariner, as well as very recent Marvel news. It's fun hanging out with my buddies, reminiscing and opining without all the baggage of DC exclusivity I felt shackled to in blogging. Also, while we're trying to build a listener base with Marvel properties, the goal is to expand to other topics, not only from other comic publishers, but other entertainment mediums. Hell, I might even try some DC or even Martian Manhunter episodes, and I hope you'll be there listening and commenting!

Monday, July 21, 2014

2013 Young Justice: Legacy video game trailer by Little Orbit

"One Will Rise. One Will Fall. One Will Die.

The creative team behind the smash hit TV series Young Justice have joined forces with Little Orbit to bring you the ultimate in fan service - Young Justice: Legacy, an interactive bridge between Seasons 1 & 2!

Find out what happened during the missing years by playing through 15 pulse-pounding missions. Be a part of the story in co-op and multiplayer modes and level up in this action packed, RPG styled game. Assemble your team of up to 12 playable characters, take on cunning villains, and define your legacy!"
Danica McKellar reprised her role as M'gann M'orzz/Megan Morse from the television show as the playable character Miss Martian in this team building action role-playing game.

Saturday, July 19, 2014

2013 “Yoshi Manhunter” fan art by Peter Townsend

Click To Enlarge

Part of "Justice League of Nintendo," which you can read more about by clicking on the picture.

Friday, July 18, 2014

2014 The Fire & Water Podcast Presents “The Elements Club” Fumetti by Ryan Daly

Click To Enlarge

Occasional blog commentator and regular Twitter buddy Count Drunkula of Flowers & Fishnets: A Black Canary Blog fame has crafted a photonovel with action figures as an unlicensed byproduct of The Fire and Water Podcast called “The Elements Club” on tumblr. While I too thought this was insane and would probably be awful, I underestimated the sarcastic wit of good Mr. Daly, as it's actually a funny and brisk read of an 18 "page" comic. The Martian Manhunter is referenced throughout the strip, so I highly recommend fans check this out. There's even a bonus section with "bloopers," promos, script samples and such!
  1. Swamp Thing
  2. Red Tornado, Metamorpho, & more
  3. Ever more dubious candidates
  4. The bottom of the barrel.
  5. Epilogue

Thursday, July 17, 2014

The Vast Stadium

A baseball stadium in Middletown which has hosted games featuring the Flamingos and Wonders big league teams. Presumably, the Flamingos were the local team, although it was never explicitly stated. Pictured are a Wonders batter amidst the Flamingos, including rookie pitcher Big Bob Michaels. Appeared in Detective Comics #226 (December, 1955).