After an exploration of the mediocre in Hollywood’s treatment of super-hero brands (link), I figured it was worth following up with a post on digging out the strangest characters from comic-lore and the world of super-heroes. While Batman, Superman and Spiderman have always been seen as blue-chip brands as far as super-hero prowess goes, a host of less-obvious and down-right bizarre personalities lurk in the shadows of the world of crime-fighting vigilantes. If Warner Brothers are running out of original ideas for their portfolio of comic-book world-savers, they need not look any further…
1 – Powdered Toast Man
“Leave everything to me!” is the hallmark declaration of a hero that is a living being of the toast genus, as featured on ‘The Ren & Stimpy Show’. Powdered Toast Man can fly by being projected from a toaster, or through flatulently ejecting the titular powdered toast from his anus. His powers also include projectile raisin breath and the ability to fire hyper-corrosive croutons from his arm-pits.
2 – Arm Fall Off Boy
What could be any stranger a power than to be able to shed limbs and put them to use as bludgeoning crime-fighting weapons? Welcome to the world of the awkwardly titled ‘Arm Fall Off Boy’. The DC comics creation from 1989 heralds from the 30th century and claimed to have gained his strange ability whilst holding the anti-gravity metal Element 152. School boy error! And nothing beats a character with a weird helmet.
3 – Matter-Eater Lad
This former resident of the planet Bismoll claims his titular power through the nature of his homeworld. Deadly Bismollian microbes rendered all food inedible, causing the planet’s residents to evolve the ability to eat any kind of matter. Need someone to eat a hole through a wall made of glass, turd or solid steel? Titter ye not for Matter-Eater Lad is here!
4 – Dogwelder
Another Ronseal-style hero, in that this one ‘does what it says on the tin’. That being possessing the skill to weld canine forms onto any surface. One can imagine how much an enemy could be impeded by having a dozen great Danes attached to his/her body. A fascinatingly bizarre super-power…
5 – The Green Bastard
Sunnyvale trailer park in Nova Scotia provides the residency of an individual known as Bubbles. This proud pillar of the community fulfills an important role in the trailer park in providing the common sense that is very often lacking in the various nefarious enterprises that other residents of the trailer park typically engage in. Beyond his familiar role, Bubbles has an alter-ego in the form of The Green Bastard. Little is known of The Green Bastard’s powers beyond his affinity with the various techniques of wrestling, in which he can be seen to excel. Behold, one all, the magnificent Green Bastard!
6 – The Toxic Avenger
Old Toxie himself! After falling into a vat of nuclear waste, Tromaville’s geekiest resident, Melvin Ferd is transformed into a deformed hulk in the form of The Toxic Avenger. It’s unclear exactly what Toxie is particularly skilled at, other than punching and throwing jocks and displaying copious amounts of chivalry.
7 – Infectious Lass
Drura Sehpt is an alien hailing from the planet, Somahtur. A place infested with deadly microbes. As such, she has the strange super-power of being able to infect all that cross her path with deadly disease. A nasty way to bring down an enemy for sure, but it must surely limit her social life!
8 – Bouncing Boy
Chuck Taine gained the ability to transform his body into a bouncy sphere after having mistakenly drunk a super plastic liquid at a sports event (as you do…). Whilst in sphere form, Bouncing Boy becomes invulnerable and is effectively a self-contained ballistic missile. Yeah, we’re still waiting for the green light here. Peter Kaye as Taine maybe?
9 – Bananaman
A character devised from the producers of the old-school British comics, The Dandy and The Beano, Bananaman is loosely based on Superman. When Eric Wimp ingests bananas, he attains super-human strength and the ability to fly. Bananaman’s kryptonite is in the form of mouldy bananas, which weaken his powers. Nutritionally ill-advised, but suitably weird enough for this post!
10 – Superdupont
Superdupont is France’s proud superhero representative against the sinister terrorist organization, Anti-France. He is the son of an unknown soldier, buried beneath the Arc De Triomphe. Armed with the power of flight and a host of stereotypical French character attributes, he stands in the fight against all things that would threaten the French way.