Thursday, March 3, 2011

Martian Manhunter Menagerie March Madness, Division 2, Round 1

If I had it all to do again, I'd make some changes. The original idea for the qualifying rounds was to trim off the fat of the Vile Menagerie to allow for longer voting periods on the more popular characters. Initially, everybody in the Martian Manhunter rogues gallery was going to have to compete, until I realized I couldn't pit Darkseid against Wiley Dalbert without it being an unfair and boring Godzilla vs. Bambi match-up. Likewise, having Darkseid or Mongul take the other out in a qualifying match that Nemusus passes through would be insane. I still ended up with some lopsided and ill-considered contests, and people I would have liked to have seen fight never managed to meet up, but I'll try to keep things interesting for the rest of the duration.

More Disqualifications

Tybalt Bak'sar: I cast the first vote for the competitor, B'rett, who I consider one of the top ten most important Martian Manhunter villains. That said, Tybalt took an early lead that I thought would sink B'rett, who only won by that single vote. I have a noted and run-encompassing disdain for the Ostrander/Mandrake series, and I figure Bak'sar makes more sense as a Green Lantern villain, but I still more readily accept him into the Vile Menagerie than most of that lot. He's pretty cool, and might have gone farther without the hyped B'rett as an early obstacle.

The Invaders From the Space Warp: I confess that I still haven't read the first appearance of Zook or the erythematous Ric Ocaseks from another dimension that helped facilitate his stay on Earth. My bad.

Scary Monsters: I like these guys, and think they're pretty bad ass. I was looking forward to pitting them against other overwhelming forces like the Clanetary System, but either folks hated that mini-series or never read it in the first place. Maybe folks voted on the historical significance of the goonie-looking Thythen?

Effigy: Aside from his role in the very short-lived homicide of J'Onn J'Onzz, this guy is totally Kyle Rayner's property, and rather dead. Scorch was both a natural match and a certain kill.

Malador: I started a Vile Menagerie entry for this dude years ago, got sidetracked, and it has languished ever since. I actually like Malador and think he was a lot cooler than the wizard Diabolu. I suspect it was the impact of the Idol-Head that really trounced Malador, who only played into two stories total.

Professor Proxon: The Crime College may have been on the cover of the first Showcase Presents collection, but King Zeus helped close out that collection with a bang as one of the few true super-villains to be found inside. Proxon was also pretty unexceptional, set apart from the numbingly usual '50s suspects only by his one gimmick.

Wiley Dalbert: The dorky Doc Brown of chronal crime got an early lead on Alex Dunster, but ended up choking over the long haul.

The Falcon: Probably a better equipped and more effective villain than Mr. Moth, but when silly meets stupid, may the most ridiculous one "win."

Porto: The one person who voted for "The Man of 1,000 Disguises" over the vastly superior "Wizard of 1,000 Menaces" was just screwing with me, weren't they?

Division 2 Matches






Femme Fatales!

Bette Noir




Ancient Evils!

Vandal Savage


Diabolu & his Idol-Head


Experimental Slavers!

The Hyperclan


The Thythen (Vonn/Mars II)



The Lizard Men (American Secrets)


VULTURE (International Mob)


Servants of Darkseid!





Mooth & Squirrel!

Mr. Moth


The Human Squirrel


Get Them To The Greek!



King Zeus


Not the Manhunter!

B'rett (Yellow Martian Criminal)


B’enn B’urnzz (Future Green Martian)


Weird Science!

Alex Dunster (Robot Brain Teleporter)


Professor Arnold Hugo (Wizard of 1,000 Menaces)


LissBirds said...

"Mooth And Squirrel?" Oh, that was absolutely priceless. Your poll headings are making my day.

Wow, I don't even remember Malador! I'm going to have to sort through the Vile Menagerie one of these days. I don't think I've read The Thythen's appearances at all.

Diabolu Frank said...

I put very little thought into the match blurbs, so if they have any entertainment value at all, I'm extremely pleased with the return on investment.

Malador was the wizard shrunk by his rival Sorbo, but was restored to normal by the Giant-Maker. He'd make a great Atom villain.

The Thythen were the aliens that enslaved the Martian survivors on Vonn, and used Bel Juz as bait against J'Onn and Superman. It happened in 1972, so it falls under the heading of all the Bronze Age stories that are unreferenced, unreprinted, and unloved.