A forever in-work compendium of Marvel and DC canon immigrants. What's a canon immigrant? Go here to find out!

Wednesday, October 18, 2017

Spider-Man's Marriage

This is one of those tricky ones where an idea was created for an adaptation, then they decided to introduce the idea in the comics as well, before the idea appeared in the adaptation. What makes this trickier is that they tried to have the two storylines coincide.

Since 1977, Stan Lee has written a daily newspaper strip called The Amazing Spider-Man. At some point he decided Peter Parker and Mary Jane Watson should get married in it, and he approached Marvel Comics about them doing the storyline in the comics as well, ideally having them take place the same week.

They didn't happen in the same week, but they did happen close together. In the comic strip, the marriage took place on June 21, 1987:

In the comics, they got married in Amazing Spider-Man Annual #21 (August 1987):

Of course, they're no longer married, which is unfortunate. But it still counts!

Wednesday, October 11, 2017

Nickname Spotlight: The Last Son of Krypton

I've addressed some of the common phrases attached to Superman before, such as "strange visitor from a distant planet," but this is one I'd never even considered might be an immigrant: did you know "Last Son of Krypton" first appeared outside of comics?

According to CBR, Elliot S! Maggin had been trying to get the moniker into comics for a long time, but he was always told he couldn't use it. When Maggin got a gig to write a tie-in novel for the movie, however, no one could stop him. Hence, we got an origin story titled Superman: Last Son of Krypton (1978).

I don't know the exact first time it was used in comics, but I know it definitely appeared by 1993 on the cover of Action Comics #687. And the way it was used, alongside other phrases like "Man of Steel" and "Man of Tomorrow" - each Superman replacement used one of his nicknames - makes me think it was already well-known to comics readers by then.

Wednesday, October 4, 2017

Character Spotlight: Selena

I love when I'm surprised by a canon immigrant. This one is one of the more surprising ones I've seen.

Selena first appeared as the villain of Supergirl (1984). She started out as a would-be witch working with a warlock named Nigel, but she developed real powers when she discovered an object called the Omegahedron. The movie was not well received, so it didn't have much impact on the comics (though it also didn't have NO impact, as seen here).

That is, until now. Thanks - I'm guessing - to the new cachet all things Supergirl has because of the show, Supergirl #10 (June 2017) featured the debut of a new version of Selena. This one seems to have always had powers, and has ties to Limbo Town (where Klarion the Witch Boy is from). She appears as part of a new Fatal Five, which - despite the name - seems more like a Supergirl Revenge Squad. This is a revealing choice in my eyes, because it instantly ranks her as one of Supergirl's greatest threats.

Wednesday, September 27, 2017

Location Spotlight: Hall of Doom

The Hall of Doom was formerly featured in the "Super Friends Super Post", where I said this:

Hall of Doom

The Hall of Doom first appeared in 1978's Challenge of the Super Friends as the headquarters of the Legion of Doom.  It made its first comics appearance in Justice Society of America #6 (July 2007) as a former base of the Secret Society of Super-Villains. It has since had a handful of appearances in such books as Justice League of AmericaFinal Crisis, and Superman/Batman.

More recently, it has popped up in Dark Nights: Metal #2 (September 2017). As with some previous entries, Rebirth is somewhat nebulously a continuation of both the New 52 and pre-New 52 DC universes, so I've decided to treat it as a first appearance just to be safe. Strangely, this Hall of Doom is in the lava pits of Antarctica instead of a swamp.

Wednesday, September 20, 2017

Who Designed Captain America's Shield?

In the comics, Captain America's circular shield was designed by Myron Maclain. Surprisingly, we don't learn this until Avengers #66 (May 1969).

In Captain America: The First Avenger (2011), we learn that Howard Stark - Iron Man's father - was a key member of the Super Soldier Program and designed the shield himself.

In Captain America: White #3 (2015), however, Cap mentions he believes Howard Stark invented it.

This is an interesting canon immigrant because it's not concrete. We don't see Howard Stark working on it; it doesn't even say for sure that he did invent it. All we know is that Steve heard he invented it. This allows writers going forward to keep it Myron Maclain or change it to Howard Stark and pretty much be right either way.

Wednesday, September 13, 2017

Character Spotlight: Gustav Fiers (aka The Gentleman)

Gustav Fiers is a rare case of a canon foreigner appearing in another adaptation before appearing in comics.

He first appeared in a novel called Spider-Man: The Gathering of the Sinister Six (1999) as the brother of Karl Fiers, an established character who was responsible for the death of Spider-Man's parents, Richard and Mary Parker. As the Gentleman, he became a man behind the scenes in the criminal underworld and was responsible for the creation of the Sinister Six, a team-up of some of Spider-Man's greatest foes. He went on to appear in Spider-Man: Revenge of the Sinister Six and Spider-Man: Secret of the Sinister Six, where he was killed off.

He later appeared in The Amazing Spider-Man (2012), where he was only credited as "The Man in the Shadows". He also appeared in the sequel, called Gustav Fiers this time, where he talks with Harry Osborn about forming the Sinister Six.

Fiers received a cameo in Civil War II: Kingpin #4 (October 2016), where he was one of several villains who supported Janus as the new Kingpin.

Friday, September 8, 2017

Costume Spotlight: Mr. Freeze's Goggles

I'm a little behind this week because of work, but better late than never.

Mr. Freeze is no stranger to this blog. From his name to his origin to his costume, plus more, nearly everything about him has come from non-comics sources at one time or another.

One thing that's never appeared in comics is his goggles. In Batman: The Animated Series (1992), Mr. Freeze had very distinctive red goggles that strongly contrasted with the cool colors of the rest of his outfit.

Even in Batman: Mr. Freeze (1997), which introduced a lot of changes based on the animated series, it didn't include the goggles. 

Unfortunately, one of those changes was walked back in the New 52. Freeze's origin was basically the same, only now Nora Fries was Nora Fields and Freeze only THOUGHT he was married to her. Surprisingly, he was given his iconic red goggles in the same issue (Red Hood and the Outlaws #9, May 2012).

It's's like DC can't help themselves. Even when they distance themselves a bit from one instance of canon immigration, they introduce another one!

(Note: while finding pictures for this piece, I discovered the red goggles had shown up before, in Batman: Legends of the Dark Knight #190-191 [April/May 2005]. In fact, an entire Animated Series-accurate outfit appeared. Many stories in this series are of uncertain continuity so I don't know if this counts, but I've included them below for thoroughness.)