Friday, November 2, 2012
Suiting the Sleuth From Outer Space #3
After having gone through so many Bloodwynd inspired designs that had ties to a misguided fanfic that had been metastasizing in the back of my brain for half the '90s, I wanted to go a different way. Emphasize the Tars Tarkas over the Chromium Age style. I've always liked the weightlifting girdle as design element from the Golden Age, as it accentuated both strength and a masculine sensuality that rubs homophobic fanboys the wrong way. The best known icons of that fashion choice were the original incarnations of the Atom and Doctor Fate. Al Pratt ditched his for a long while, went back to it, and then died with a permanence rare in comics. Kent Nelson stuck by his, and passed them to other Fates, including a female (on whom a girdle was passe rather than unique.) Jared Stevens would have nothing to do with the gold and blue suit though. I really wanted to get away from the chest straps so common amongst DC characters, and I figured the girdle was up for grabs and would allow for the showcasing of plenty of green martian man-flesh. Aide from adding the wholly unnecessary wrist braces and incorporating the white pie symbols on the cape clasps, this was a pretty safe and faithful design. While the green and dark blue scheme is somewhat of an Alien Atlas trademark, it's also a bit flat and drab. No Martian Detective visible here, either. Back to the drawing board. Do note the red and black garbed Bloodwyndwannabe at the right. That went in the exact opposite direction in terms of loudness and the excesses of the zeitgeist. I did try the "wrestler" design on one of the Maguire sheets, just to see if that worked better than my anatomically incorrect Howard Porter swipe. If anything, viewed statically, it's even less interesting.