Mayday Mayhem: Look

MaydayMayhemPic

Above is Mayday Mayhem in her Superhero costume!

Below is an illustration and some notes from the creation of the Mayday Mayhem story. It displays the idea of the plane crash, along with Mayday Mayhem holding onto the IC, falling from the plane crash.

MaydayMayhemPic2

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Mayday Mayhem: Look

Mayday Mayhem: The Superhero!

Origin:

Madison Flame was an ordinary government spy. She went on secret missions in order to protect the lives of innocent people. In working for The Spy Force, Madison was able to do just that. The Spy Force caught wind of an illegal chemical being developed that could allow for people to shape shift in order to physically enter the internet, and maneuver themselves into top secret government files. Madison Flame was assigned to the case to stop the evil twin duo Mischievous Margaret and Dangerous Dan, nicknamed MaDa, from transporting the illegal chemical (IC) to their lair. She boards their plane in hopes of hijacking it. As they are flying though, the plane begins to malfunction, a plan set in motion by MaDa. They have rigged the plane to crash so that it would look like they had died, while in reality they jump off the plane with parachutes in order to safely get the IC to their lair. Close behind is the illegal chemical, also rigged up to a parachute, set to land in another location for the Twins to go retrieve. Madison grabs the IC just in time for the bottom of the plane to open up and drop them out. As she is falling, she realizes the parachute is not functioning. Holding on to the IC she does everything she can to help soften her inevitable fall. Due to her spy training she is able to move around enough that the trajectory of the fall doesn’t have as much impact as it would if they had fallen straight down. Right before they are about to hit the ground the IC container bursts open due to the weight of Madison and the fast shift in atmospheric pressure, dousing Madison in the chemical. As soon as she is covered, and only inches from the ground, Madison is able to stop the fall completely and hover in mid-air. She then realizes that something has changed within her. She now has super powers! Thus begins the adventures of Spy turned Superhero, Mayday Mayhem!

Abilities:

Mayday Mayhem can shapeshift into anything she wishes. This ability comes from being doused in the illegal chemical, which was developed to give the ability to shape shift enough for a human to go into a computer/internet. She also has the ability to fly, which comes from her flight and fall leading up to her transformation.

Mission:

Her mission is to serve people and protect the country. She began her career as a spy prior to gaining her superpowers, so her mission is the same as she has always believed, but not she is able to better achieve her goal.

Look:

I have pictures of Mayday Mayhem, but I am currently experiencing technical difficulties in uploading them. I will attempt to post them in another post!

Mayday Mayhem: The Superhero!

Final Floppy Post

Hey Guys! For this post I read Batman and Robin Issue #38 for March 2015. It is the comic in between the two I have already blogged about. It is an interesting perspective, to read it knowing what had just happened and then also knowing what is about to happen. In this comic Robin and Damian both strive for trust and independence from his father. He wants to prove his powers are enough, and that he can be trusted to go out on his own. Batman has a lot of one-liners about parenting in this issue, including “Fair doesn’t start until you’re twenty-one” (Gleason 10). By the end of this issue we see Robin encounter his villainous mother in a dream, swim to the depths of the ocean to visit Aquaman, and release his mutant siblings, created by his mother, onto land. At this point I wish I had brought Issue #39 with me today in order to re-read, as I believe the mutant brothers Robin releases in this issue are the ones he must “teach a lesson” in the next issue. Looking over my blog from #39 it appears as though Robin may be dealing with these same creatures, but I cannot be sure.

Of all three comics I read, this issue was by far my favorite. It was interesting having Robin coming into his own with his powers and seeing Batman unsure of how to handle it. I really enjoyed the writing of this one, as Batman has some great lines. I also like that it gives us more information and background on Damian’s mother, and how he came to be. I for one did not know she was a villain until this issue. She wanted to create him to be a monster, like his siblings, but she failed and Batman won. I like seeing more about Robin’s story, as I know a lot more about Batman. One issue this comic raises for me though it that it appears to be way more about Robin than Batman. Batman makes a comment about him and Robin’s relationship saying, “Haven’t you heard? We’re the dynamic duo” (2). This sounds sarcastic to me, as throughout the issues I’ve read, Batman and Robin are not working very well as a team, and most of the plot seems to revolve around Robin. I wonder why this comic isn’t just about Robin, as in the title doesn’t necessarily need to include Batman. It could just be the issues I have happened to read, but Robin is getting way more panel time than Batman. I would be interested to see how as this comic goes on if Batman and Robin are able to learn to work together better. It could be that Robin hasn’t learned to harness his power yet, or it could be that Batman hasn’t been able to fully accept Robin with his powers yet.

Also, another thing I just noticed about these comics is that they all have “THE NEW 52” written on the covers. Batman’s original comic issue, when he was introduced, was Detective Comics #52. I just made the connection that this comic is trying to be a new start to Batman. I wonder if the first issue in this series included Robin, because if it includes him from the beginning, it would be a new way of telling Batman’s tale.

Overall I really enjoyed reading this comic, and I think I might continue to read it even after the class ends, as I want to see how the continue to grow the relationship of Batman and Robin.

That’s all for now! Thank you for reading! Feel free to post questions or comments!

Final Floppy Post

Critical Analysis of a Superhero Film: The Fantastic Four

Finally, the post you’ve all been waiting for! It has been sitting half written on my desktop since early spring break, but now it is finally finished and ready for viewing!

The superhero film I chose to watch and analyze is the 2005 movie Fantastic Four directed by Tim Story. I had never seen it before, and I thought it would be really cool to watch it and see how it compares/contrasts with the original Fantastic Four comic. Luckily I watched it with one of the kids I nanny for, a self-proclaimed “Marvel Genius”, because I didn’t really understand who everyone was at the beginning of the movie, and he was able to explain everyone to me. (I kept confusing Reed, Ben, and Doctor Doom!) I was especially confused about the character Victor Von Doom. I knew about Doctor Doom, but I didn’t expect him in the beginning of the film. In fact, the way the film depicted him, his relationship to the Fantastic Four, and his back-story were very different from what I read in the comic. The first comic for the Fantastic Four did not include any information about Doctor Doom or Victor Von Doom. His character wasn’t introduced until I believe the 6th issue. From my understanding, Von Doom had no relationship to the Fantastic Four’s mission to space in the comic. As a refresher I looked up his bio page on the Marvel site, and found that while he did know Reed and Ben from college, that is the extent of their relationship in the comics. In the film, however, Von Doom is the backer for the space mission, and is in space with them when they receive their powers. In fact, the story behind his scar is changed for the film as well. In the comic, it is told that he gets the cut on his face in college from an experiment gone wrong, which he blames on Reed. In the film, he gets his scar and powers while in space. The whole back-story of Doom receiving his powers from sacrificing his childhood love to Hazareth Three is changed to receiving his powers the same way the Fantastic Four do (Marvel.com).

Another strange plot change is the relationship of Susan Storm to both Victor and Reed. In the comic, Susan is engaged to Reed from the get go. In the film, however, she is engaged to Victor, but it is made clear that she has a past with Reed. After they get their powers, Susan breaks up with Victor in order to rekindle her relationship with Reed. It is a strange plot change, as Victor could have just seen her as an object of lust, as he did in the comics. The film feels the need to make his tie to her more important than just sexual. The two of them having an actual committed relationship may be a way of tightening their bond, as well as upping Doom’s stakes in the mission. It is interesting that they made Doom’s tie to the Fantastic Four a relationship with Susan, rather than the original plot of his connection with Reed.

Finally, I want to talk about The Thing. He is such a unique character in that he is the only Superhero who is permanently changed. The film explains this by having him outside of the spaceship when the ray hits, but in the comic there was no difference for the four characters. In the comic they were all inside, and yet The Thing is the most gruesomely effected. I like that the film explores a way to explain his major deformity, because it doesn’t make sense that he would be so affected and not be in closer proximity to the ray. What interested me the most is that The Thing, being the only Superhero that cannot change out of his superhero-ness, DOES change back in the film! Reed is working on a machine to reverse the effects, and ultimately Dr. Doom helps Ben get enough power to change back into being human. As far as I have read in the comics, this event does not happen. Ben, as The Thing, spends a lot of time complaining about being The Thing, but never has the opportunity to change. I think that based on the attitude of the comic version, if given the chance he would change back. But it’s noteworthy that the Ben of the film, while he has the opportunity and TAKES the opportunity to change back, he ultimately chooses to be The Thing. It becomes a deformity that is no longer imposed on him, but rather he chooses to accept it and use it for good. He isn’t like The Thing of the comic that is moody and angry about his condition (well, at the beginning he is), but he is a Thing that chooses to be such. I think that is a very significant change that shows a new message of self-acceptance that other superhero narratives (majority comics) seem to avoid. By The Thing not having a secret identity, nor the ability to create one, he must fully accept himself.

Overall I really enjoyed watching The Fantastic Four. I think I enjoyed it more having read the comics, and being able to see how things connected or didn’t. I am now really interested in watching Rise of the Silver Surfer, to get a better understanding of him!

That’s all for now! Thank you for reading! Feel free to post questions or comments!

Critical Analysis of a Superhero Film: The Fantastic Four

Critical Paper Rough Draft

Superman has been long held as the original superhero. He is the first to break out into the genre and really stick. We have seen his story told over the past 80 years, and he is one of the most recognizable figures in American culture. And yet, from his conception there has been the desire to hide him, to keep him hidden. His alter ego/secret identity Clark Kent is introduced within five pages of his comic. Throughout the comics he continues to go back and fourth between these two identities. He keeps his identity as Superman secret, while living daily as Clark Kent. A complete 180 from his super identity, Clark is “a mild-mannered reporter” who can’t seem to be tough enough to impress his love interest Lois Lane (DC Comics). He is a little clumsy and seems to be very shy. In these early comics Lois cannot stand Clark, yet pines over Superman, unaware that they are the same person. Presenting himself as Clark only seems to put him at a disadvantage. It keeps him separated from the girl he likes and causes him to have to keep the secret of, what I believe is his true identity.

Before Superman becomes Clark, he begins his life as Kal-El. He was born on the planet Krypton and given that name there. Upon his arrival on Earth his super strength increases, and from infancy he is “Super”. The alias of Clark Kent is created around him to hide his identity, yet it is neither of his true identities. It is not his Kal-El given name, nor is it who he truly is as a character. He must “put on a mask” so to speak (his glasses) and hide his true self. This character does Superman a disservice, because it alienates him further than the alien he already is. There is no identity to protect, at least in the earliest comics, because there are no established villains outside of typical human issues (rich fat cats for example). The effect of Superman being known as such doesn’t seem to be very threatening. In fact, it would only help him to not be the shy and goofy Clark Kent. It is very odd that such a powerful character would take on such a wimpy persona. The true him is not a wimp by any stretch of the imagination, so why feel the need to play one? This affects his life at work as well as his love life. If he were to be revealed as Superman, he could live freely as himself, and not a made up alias so diametrically opposed to his true self.

The superhero Spider-Man, however, differs from Superman here. While Superman has always been super, making that his true identity, Spider-Man was first Peter Parker. He lived as Peter Parker for fifteen years before that fateful day when the radioactive spider bit him. Upon becoming Spider-Man he must now reconcile the two parts of him. He is both still Peter, while also adding on to his true self. This contrasts Superman, as he had always been super and created Clark Kent. Peter Parker had always been that, but then becomes a superhero, making that his alternate identity, but one that can still go with who he is as a person. It doesn’t change his personality so far from himself that he is no longer recognizable. Both Peter and Spidey flow together very nicely. They share the same morals and perspectives on life. From an audience standpoint, Spidey and Parker are reconcilable characters. Neither side has to put on an act in order to portray the other. They go hand in hand with what the other feels. Superman, however, is not like this. He has created up an alternate identity for himself that is not reconcilable with his superhero self. It must be kept very separate and consciously different. Superman and Clark do not share very many qualities.

Here I want to go more in depth about the secret identity as a convention of superheroes. Why it is important/why it isn’t. There is potential here to bring up superheroes that either lack an alias (are only known as their superhero self) or who are known as who they were before becoming super and who they are after. And example of the latter is Captain America, as his identity is publically known. He is still a successful superhero, despite people knowing who he is. Same goes for Iron Man. The convention of the secret identity seems to be outgrown at a certain point. (Possibly bring up how the convention is made fun of in The Incredibles—they only need put on an eye mask and suddenly their identities are hidden).

Works Cited/Referenced

“Captain America.” Marvel. Marvel Comics, n.d. Web. 29 April 2015.

Lee, Stan and Steve Ditko. Amazing Fantasy #15. Web.

Seigel, Jerry and Joe Shuster. Superman #53. Web.

Siegel, Jerry and Joe Shuster. The Superman Chronicles. New York: DC Comics, 2013.

Print.

“Spider-Man.” Marvel. Marvel Comics, n.d. Web. 29 April 2015.

“Superman.” DC. DC Comics, n.d. Web. 29 April 2015.

***Thank you for taking the time out to read my paper! I know this is a VERY rough draft. I still feel very uncertain about how to go about arguing my perspective with research. Professor Hatfield has directed me to some very great works from the library, but unfortunately my schedule this week has not allowed me to get over there yet. For my final draft I of course will have many more academic sources, as well as a complete paper. If you have read my paper and believe you have any sort of input or help for me, PLEASE comment below! I am looking for as much feedback and input as possible. I know that what I have written above is not a solid paper, but I am looking at it as more of a very detailed outline, or at least an outline written to look like a paper. Again, thank you for reading, and please do not hesitate to critique, give feedback, or any input for that matter!

Critical Paper Rough Draft

Critical Paper Prospectus and Annotated Bibliography

For my critical paper I would like to focus on Superman. He is the only superhero that was truly born a hero. I would like to focus on his alter ego, Clark Kent, and how he represents Superman’s view on humanity. Clark Kent is a representative for normal life, whereas Superman represents human potential. Clark Kent is Superman’s alter ego, Superman being the dominant figure. I would like to look deeper into his origin story and his early comics and compare them to another superhero who is first their alter ego, then their superhero self, such as Peter Parker/Spider-Man. The argument I would like to make is that Superman does not need the Clark Kent cover. He is a superhero outright, where as Peter Parker is a boy who is then changed into a superhero, therefore the dual identity is necessary.

Annotated Bibliography

Siegel, Jerry and Joe Shuster. The Superman Chronicles. New York: DC Comics, 2013. Print.

-This book of the first Superman comics is helpful both for background on Superman, as well as for evidence as to why I believe that Superman’s dual identity is unnecessary. I want to use a few comics from this book that show the issues of Superman’s dual identities with his relationships with others.

Lee, Stan and Steve Ditko. Amazing Fantasy #15. Web.

-This comic is necessary for discussing Spider-Man’s origin. This will help set up my argument that Peter Parker is a necessary cover for Spider-Man.

Seigel, Jerry and Joe Shuster. Superman #53. Web.

-This is Superman’s origin story. This is crucial for setting up my whole argument. This story will help me show that because Superman is from another planet, he doesn’t necessarily need to cover for himself.

Critical Paper Prospectus and Annotated Bibliography

Floppy Post #2

Hey guys! This is my second floppy post on Batman and Robin! Unfortunately the newest issue of the comic wasn’t available when I went to get it from the store, so I backtracked a bit and got the two comics that came out before the one I did my first post on. This post will be about Batman and Robin issue #37. In this comic, from what I gather, Robin/Damien is dead, and Batman is attempting to get the sliver of chaos shard that he needs in order to bring Damien back to life. In this particular issue Damien is never mentioned as Robin, as this is before he has powers. Throughout this issue Batman is battling Darkseid and Darkseid’s son. Batman has the help of Batgirl, Cyborg, Red Robin, and Red Hood. These characters and their relationship to Batman are not explained in this issue. I personally have never heard of Red Robin or Red Hood. I am not really sure where or when they come into the world of Batman, but they seem to be very minor characters. Their action in the comic is separate from Batman’s. They are in support of him, but they don’t really interact until they are going home. Continuing with the plot, Batman defeats Darkseid and gets the chaos sliver, although it almost kills him. He must use full power in order to get it and bring it back to save Damien. Upon their return, Batman’s suit, at full power, is close to self-destruction, but he must power through in order to save Damien. Somehow through great red and yellow illustrations, Batman is successful in bringing Damien back to life. Once he is alive, somehow Batman is no longer wearing his full suit (no mask) and is now there to greet Damien as Bruce Wayne, Damien’s father. The second to last page is a picture that takes up both sides of the page. On one side are Alfred, a dog, and the “Bat Team” (as I have named them), and on the other side of the page are Bruce and Damien hugging, with light white/orange flame like thing coming off of Damien. The “Bat Team”, Alfred, and the dog all have shocked looks on their faces. Bruce and Damien are smiling, Bruce’s face looking a little like Tom Cruise. The final page of the comic consists of a few panels with everyone seemingly relieved that the chaos sliver worked, then on the other side of the page Bruce/Batman has collapsed and Damien is screaming, “Father!” with a greenish full moon behind him surrounded by bat silhouettes.

The panels in this comic are very interesting. They are not cookie cutter at all. Each page has different size panels, or no panels, or characters breaking out of panels. It is a very dynamic comic, which makes it feel more engaging. It is interesting how many people are credited for this comic. I think that the different people’s input definitely adds to the dynamic element of the comic. There is a writer (Peter J. Tomasi), penciller (Patrick Gleason), inker (Mick Gray), colorist (John Kalisz), letterer (Carlos M. Mangual), and collaboration on the cover by Gleason, Gray, and Kalisz. This multiplicity of input makes for an incredible story. Each panel is brought to life through the different styles of each of these guys’ creative skills. I just find it very cool!

That’s all for now! Thank you for reading! Feel free to post questions or comments!

Floppy Post #2