Friday, March 25, 2011

Martian Manhunter Menagerie March Madness: Round 3 Wrap-Up

Despero vs. TOR: Congratulations to the Robot Criminal of Mars for holding a solid tie for the first couple of days, and this was a fun match to picture in my head, but the end result was pretty much inevitable. Despero is a popular villain outside Manhunter fandom whom I've done theme months around several years running. I just got around to adding TOR, one-shot bad guy, to the blog's rogues gallery. Math's easy, and with TOR's innate fire weakness, the Kalanorian simply overwhelms. (12-6)

Commander Blanx vs. Vandal Savage: This was a dicey proposition, because Blanx is the more important Martian Manhunter villain, but Vandal Savage is vastly better known and more popular. Thankfully, this is a Martian Manhunter blog, so relevancy won out, even among those that only know Blanx by reputation. (11-6)

The Hyperclan vs. The Devil Men of Pluto: This was in no way the closest of the matches, but it was the last one I did a write-up on, because I've learned to never underestimate the Devil Men. Those guys are gnarly, but it took a gang to take on one relatively sedate Desert Dweller, and the Hyperclan are a bunch of raging White Martians, so no.(11-7)

Mr. V vs. Mr. Moth: As you might have guessed, this here was a killin' round. I'm never going to fill in the blanks on the March Madness score card this year, because we've had too many ties and triple-headers to compensate. I've groused about Mr. Moth causing a number of such incidents, and he initially looked to be doing it again here, then it passed, and then he almost did it again. I've got to say that despite my complaints, Mr. Moth's esteem has risen in my eyes, as sort of the David Lynchian gonzo surrealist super-villain of the set. Still, Mr. V is one of the big guns, so he deserved to progress without any namby-pamby close calls. Despite my confidence in Faceless, this was a squeaker! (9-8)

Bette Noir vs. Doctor Samedi: I have not developed a respect for Dr. Samedi. If anything, his vexing me with ties and progressing far beyond his worth made me dislike him all the more. However, Bette's finally offing him for me by such a wide margin certainly makes me appreciate her more. I thought losing Scorch was going to be a major blow for the female spoilers in a sausage showdown, but Bette may just have some legs. It remains to be seen whether they're illusory... (14-3)

Doctor Trap vs. Professor Arnold Hugo: I've been looking forward to this match, because I feel Dr. Trap is the grim n' gritty Post-Crisis take on Prof. Hugo, with regard to how his abilities play out against the Martian Manhunter. Hugo was a mad scientist in the Luthor/Sivana mode, but much lower rent. Trap pits murderous devices from his garage against super-heroes, with a decent success rate. I don't care to see an adulterated, gory Arnold Hugo in comics, especially when Trap can accomplish the same ends while originating from a dark place. That said, Prof. Hugo was J'onn J'onzz first real archenemy, and a whole lot of fun, so I'm much more excited to see him advancing. (6-11)

Asmodel vs. Ma'alefa'ak: I like Asmodel, and he's done very well based on appeal and raw power, but he's come about as far as he's earned. J'Onn J'Onzz hasn't fought him in something like a decade, and while Asmodel might just kill Malefic, the lord of the Bull Host's star has fallen far enough that it would hardly be assured. (6-13)

B'rett vs. King Zeus: Damn, but I'm loving B'rett more and more. The yellow bastard has killed the hell out of some competition, and he's never had a "gimme" match. I think he's a big deal, and I'm glad folks are seeing what he brings to the table. I've already got him cast in the 1960s fake Martian Manhunter movie sequel... (12-5)

Round 4: Polls close midday on the 28th, so get cracking:


Clan of the Fiery Plague!

The Hyperclan




Murderers of Mars!

B'rett (Criminal Yellow Martian)


Commander Blanx (Genocidal Pale Martian)


Master of the House!

Mr. V


Professor Arnold Hugo


Eye of the Beguiler!

Bette Noir





mathematicscore said...

TOR had too much power to be handled by lesser opponents, but Despero brings enough to the table to clinch this.

I believe I voted for Savage, as I've built him up pretty high in my head, but Blanx is Martian and not without cunning, so I'll buy it.

The Hyperclan clean this up in a big way. Pluto; Bah!

I can't believe the battle of the MR's was this close. In context: Mr V = R'as al Guhl, Mr Moth = Killer Moth? Catman? Signalman?

I can't believe Samedi made it this far. Bette Noir is legit, although she doesn't have the personality of a perennial villain.

Hugo by superscience. Probably just a giant magnet to deal with that jaw. Done.

I don't recall how I voted, but I think Malefic wins this via Darkseid ex machina. Asmodel just isn't a winner, at the end of the day.

B'rett is just cool. That's all.

Diabolu Frank said...

Too busy to talk until tonight...

Diabolu Frank said...

I have a lot of affection and respect for Vandal Savage, to the point that I tend to forget he's still strictly B-list. A little sorcery, some enhanced strength, plenty of cunning... but then there's the mental instability, the spotty record of super-villainy, the millenia of never quite conquering the planet. When I try to think of his greatest atrocities, I come up with associations to historical deviants, dirty dealing D-listers like Damage, and blowing up Montevideo. Even Cheshire managed to nuke an entire nation. Blanx, whom I do not have a fraction of the love for, is still a Martian capable of trading blows with Superman (for a while) and responsible for killing 99% of his own species. His Q rating sucks, but he remains impressive when you lay down the deeds. The easiest way I can put it is that Blanx fights J'Onzz with a trident, and Savage fights him in an ubertank.

I suspect I am not alone in acknowledging Mr. V while remaining somewhat apathetic about him. He's less a Ra's al Ghul than a Rupert Thorne or Carmine Falcone. On the one hand, they're untouchable crime bosses who were around in the early days (retroactively in the Batman cases) and stuck around for longish hauls. On the other hand, they're not all that unique, interesting, capable or deep, especially when compared to the more colorful figures that followed. I guess there's more enthusiasm for the Moths. I think you're right to call Mister Moth as a Calender Man level novelty level Batman foe.

I thought "Samedi" was a voodoo reference, but now I think it's "WTF" in some obscure dialect.

mathematicscore said...

Good call on the B-listery of Savage.

Mr. V does lack the legs of R'as, so you're probably right there.

Samedi = lazy villain crib.