By Beau Smith

Many years ago the crown of “The Last Real Man In Comics” was put upon my head by readers and fans of comic books. Since then I’ve tried to wear it with manly pride as any real man would. I have since become the Mecca of Manly ways to thousands.

I get asked a lot of questions on manly matters when I go to conventions and trade shows. I always try and answer em’ with truthful, testosterone filled words. Words they can live by. I usually get the standard questions? what’s the best beer? Who’s the hottest babe? How many men have you’ve killed? you know?.

Recently I was asked a pretty good question that got me thinkin’.

What comic book character is a real man?

That’s not an easy question to answer. The reason bein’ that not every super powered hero is a true real man when ya come down to it. Lemme give ya a few examples of comic book characters that ARE NOT real men.

Batman: This guy is constipated. He hasn’t cracked a smile in 60 years. Hell, he hasn’t gotten laid in 60 years. He’s just a psycho in a cape and cowl. He’s got all these millions of dollars and he hasn’t had a party in years. Every bad girl in comics has thrown themselves at him at one time or another and he’s rebuffed em’ all. I think the guy is a little light in the loafers if ya know what I mean and I think ya do. Batman ain’t known for his crisp dialogue either. Ya never hear anyone ever quoting him on anything. He’s got way too many problems to be any sort of real man.

Spawn: The world’s biggest crybaby. “I’m Burnt.” “I miss my wife”. “I’m dead.” “Waaaaaagh!” This guy needs somebody to wipe his ass. He’s another character with no sense of humor or hair on his chest. Like Batman, he’s supposed to be a super bad ass, but in reality he is the world’s biggest Nancy-Boy. Spawn has been whining for over 125 issues non-stop. I’ve had enough!

Superman: Boooooooooring. This guy wears the phrase “Comic Book Icon” like it was a stick shoved up his ass. Nobody can be this much of a farm boy! With all those powers he’s gotta have some moments when he abuses his X-ray vision and has his own nudie show on the city streets of Metropolis. At least he is more of a real man than Batman, after all, he gets to bang comic book babe Lois Lane.

The Punisher: Marvel’s version of Batman only with a gun. Frank Castle hasn’t been an interestin’ character since Chuck Dixon and John Romita, Jr. had their fling with the character. The guy needs a sadistic sense of humor.

So now you say?”Come on, Beau?name some real man characters.”

I can do that. After all it’s what I do best.

Nick Fury: He was a nazi bustin’ soldier in the last great war. Not a page went by when he wasn’t crackin’ a kraut in the jaw and makin’ with a wise crack. He ran around with a bunch of other real men and went by the name The Howling Commandos and he was always getting’ a pretty nurse to look after him. You knew the action was hittin’ full throttle as soon as his shirt got ripped off. Now days he’s a super cool secret agent for S.H.I.E.L.D.. He gets all the great gadgets and girls. As a hobby he gets to bust up Terrorists and crazed bad guys. His eye patch is the most manly piece of wardrobe in the Marvel Universe. He hangs out with Captain America from time to time and that’s always a good time.

Ben Grimm The Thing: “It’s Clobberin’ Time!” Ya just gotta love a guy that drops the G’s off his words. Bustin’ heads and drinkin’ beer are the things Ben does best. He takes no lip from anyone and ain’t afraid to go toe to toe with anyone. His classic fights with The Hulk have always been the blueprint for action. The Thing has a huge fighter’s heart. He will not back down for nothin’. Yeah, he has his tragic “I look like a monster” side, but he has never let that beat him down. Even in his orange rocky form he still gets the ladies. And as we all know, getting’ the ladies is very important in bein’ a real man.

Wolverine: Logan is the Robert Conrad of comics. He has always dared ya to knock the battery off his hairy shoulder . .Tough guy attitude has been with Wolverine from day one. He loves his beer and the other guy’s girlfriend. Ya can’t beat that. Size means nothin’ to him. He takes on all comers with no hesitation. He’s got a mysterious past and that the way it should stay. He fights with reckless abandon and his healin’ powers are perfect for his fightin’ style. Wolverine is also one of the few characters in comics that dresses like a real man. Ya gotta admire a man that will wear a cowboy hat from time to time.

Captain America: Here is a case where you can see Marvel and DC Comics are different. If Captain America was a DC character he would be a lot like Superman. Boring and a super boy scout. Marvel has always treated Cap right. He busts heads for the good ol’ red , white and blue and still keeps from being a preachy goody two shoes. He has also had his share of the ladies. They are drawn to his square jaw and all American looks. He is a loyal friend and a great team leader without bein’ pushy. He’s one of the few characters that can hang with most anyone.

Guy Gardner: Warrior: I wrote this character for two years so he has to be manly. I wouldn’t have it any other way. You can pick up any issue between #20 and #44 and see that. He took no shit and always had an eye for the ladies. If left to my own devices I had a story line workin’ up where he was gonna get together with Wonder Woman. Now there’s a couple! Guy had the personality of John Wayne, Indiana Jones and Bruce Willis all rolled into one. He was loyal to his buddies and loved nothin’ more than a good bar room brawl. If you were his friend he had your back. If you were his foe then he broke your back. It didn’t matter if he had the power ring, no ring, Vuldarian powers?whatever? Guy was always a hero and a real man.

Understand that I just skimmed the top here. There are lots more characters that are not real men and more characters that ARE real men. I thought I’d just get things started for ya. Now you can think of what ones you think are real men. Part of my job here is to get ya to think. I ain’t your daddy, but I try to teach ya a little along the way.

Then again? maybe I am your daddy.

One thing is for sure? I aint hard to find.

Your amigo,

Beau Smith
The Flying Fist Ranch
P.O. Box 706
Ceredo, WV. 25507

Prove your manhood by visiting Beau at the Flying Fists Forum!

About The Author

Beau Smith

Beau Smith is a writer for Comics Bulletin