Friday, April 15, 2011

"1967 Manhunter from Mars Movie Mister V Promotional Still"



Detective John Jones (Woody Strode) saw a flash of memory from the mind of Monty Moran (Jeff Corey) in its last flickering, depicting a faceless figure of menace. Jones then wandered through the Getaway King's abandoned hideout, thumbing through loose bits of paperwork. Finding a telephone, Jones requested the operator connect him to Captain Harding (Simon Oakland) of Middletown Police Precinct 225. Reaching his commander, Jones notified Harding of the mastermind's demise, and parts invoices found on the premises from Apex Manufacturing corporation. The Captain explained that Patrolwoman Meade (Jill Ireland) had managed to trace serial numbers off the discarded drill used in the bank robbery back to Apex. However, Lieutenant Saunders had pursued the lead "like a bull in a china shop! Barging into the offices of the heart pumping the lifeblood of Middletown without a search warrant! Commissioner Meade will have all our heads for this."

Detective Jones heard sirens in the distance, and assumed Saunders (Lawrence "Larry" Dobkin) had pursued a lead from Apex Manufacturing to his location. Jones told Captain Harding he had his own clues to follow, and wanted to set out before Saunders arrived...

Diane Meade was furious that Lt. Saunders had run with her lead without regard for procedure. She was standing in the offices of Apex Manufacturing, and instead of pursuing an investigation, Meade was struggling to smooth all the feathers Saunders had ruffled. There was no guarantee Saunders had found anything of value in the Apex files, and the likelihood of getting further cooperation, from Apex or a judge, was razor thin...

Night had settled over the outskirts of Middletown by the time Detective Jones had followed the tracks of the getaway wagon from its first safe house to its second. Jones' eyes gleamed in the dark, no less effective for lack of sunlight. Peering through the window of a garage, Jones could see shadows moving under the door of a dimly lit office, but no one on the floor itself. Closing his eyes, Jones peered into the mind of one of the men inside the room, who was interacting with a large television monitor. On the screen was the foreboding faceless man from Moran's last vision, referred to as "Mister V." The group was discussing strategies for consolidating their power over the Middletown underworld, and whether to try stealing Moran's discarded drill from police lock-up, or pay Apex Manufacturing for a replacement. Mr. V was more concerned about another criminal genius still at large that was fighting the thumb of Vulture.

Just as Mr. V planned to shut off communications to pursue that concern, the gang heard a metallic wrenching sound come from the garage. As several men rushed to the office door to check it out, an automobile engine flew through a nearby window. Light flooded the room, and the shattered glass framed a strange alien figure better than a hundred feet away, atop the ravaged getaway wagon. The towering creature had green skin, while wearing a blue cape, red chest straps, and black pants. One would think such a figure would be easy to track, but as the men drew on it, the creature appeared to vanish from sight. The men divided up to seek it out, and one hood missed the intruder reaching for his gun hand from out of the shadows. A second jade hand covered his mouth, and whisked him away into the black unknown. Another hood turned in time to fire on an unseen specter which emerged from nothingness to charge him, ramming the thug with such force as to cast him several yards into a wall. A goon told his fellow to stick close, right before being lifted off his feet and brutally flung into his compatriot. From a distance, the final gunman drew a bead on the green giant, and began firing rounds at the unblinking, ever nearer invader. On impact, the trigger man tumbled violently through the office door, before laying like a rag doll in the middle of the floor.

J'onn J'onzz strode proudly into the office, to look into the televised image of Mr. V. "What kind of man are you," queried the crimelord. "I am not a man at all, at least as you know them on this planet. I am a Martian, and I hunt evil men like you, Faceless!" After a pause, Mr. V bellowed, "We'll see who hunts whom, Manhunter from Mars," and cut off his transmission...

3 comments:

LissBirds said...

Half asleep + mouthless picture of FDR(?) = officially freaked out.

"Precinct 225?" Nice touch. :)

I like that the toughness of of Silver Age J'onn J'onzz isn't lost here. When Batman was hitting people with giant clocks or whatever, J'onn J'onzz was getting things DONE.

Professor Frank Diabolu said...

I love disturbing people, and while FDR would have been appropriate given my abandoned but tenacious nom de guerre of Frank Lee Delano, that ain't him. I just altered the face of the actor playing Mr. V.

Toward the end of the HoM run, J'Onn got pretty serious about tossing people around like rag dolls, and I wanted to push that. When someone as big as Woody Strode comes at you, it's okay to go poo a little bit.

LissBirds said...

The chair threw me off, but now I see it's not FDR.

Not only tossing people around but giving the occasional "crime doesn't pay" lecture, too. Or the "he knew the risks" comment. It just makes the violence all the more sweeter.