How well do you know your comics trivia? Test yourself with the following quiz…
1. The couple who raised Peter Parker are named a) Jonathan and Martha b) Ben and May c) Abner and Daisy May d) John and May
2. Jughead’s last name is a) Juniper b) James c) Jones d) Smith
3. What kind of animal is Goofy? a) dog b) horse c) llama d) mule
4. From where does Mr. Mxyzptlk come? a) the Fifth Dimension b) the planet Poppup c) Mxyville d) Herkimer, NY
5. What is the name of Richie Rich’s butler? a) Alfred b) Cadbury c) Jenkins d) Bucksley
6. In what “universe” does a sigil play an important role? a) Marvel b) DC c) Dark Horse d) CrossGen
7. Who was NOT one of the founders of Image? a) Todd McFarlane b) Erik Larsen c) Jim Lee d) Alan Moore
8. Which of the following does not belong with the other three? a) Glynis Oliver b) Jerry Serpe c) Artie Simek d) Tatjana Wood
9. Who was Bruce Banner saving when he was exposed to radiation? a) Bucky Barnes b) Rick Jones c) Lucas Carr d) Betty Ross
10. Where were Bruce Wayne’s parents killed? a) Suicide Slum b) Yancy Street c) Crime Alley d) The Hub
Those were the questions handed out to folks who attended the Mighty Mini-Con at Herkimer County Community College in upstate New York on Saturday, May 10th. Taking a stab at them entitled attendees to take part in my Trivia Contest that afternoon.
Now, I’d like to say that we had dozens of contestants competing for the prizes, but, in reality, there were only four (and one of them had to leave early). Still, we had a fun time for more than an hour as I asked and they answered a barrage of questions, each of the contestants earning a prize culled from my “Cabinet of Goofy Stuff.”
Thanks for playing, guys – and thanks to Mighty Mini-Con organizer Rick Olney for inviting me.
And while we’re on the subject of the Mighty Mini-Con, I had a great time there.
It’s been a number of years since I’ve seen Dick Ayers, who was the penciller on most of the FREEDOM FIGHTERS issues I wrote. I’ve always appreciated the way Dick would manage to fight everything I’d ask for in a page or panel – no easy feat in a book with seven heroes and a new gaggle of villains virtually every issue.
I can also say I was there for a part of Tony Isabella’s Farewell Tour. As readers of Tony’s columns (online at http://www.perpetualcomics.com/Column.asp?ColId=LatestTonyIsabella and http://www.worldfamouscomics.com/tony/ and in CBG) are aware, he’s decided that 2003 is the year he will attend a dozen conventions and submit twelve concepts to various comics publishers, then hang up his comics biz cape and cowl.
And two of my old colleagues, Stuart Moore and Tom Peyer, were also there, promoting the work they’re doing for Dark Horse’s ROCKET COMICS. Be sure to check out Lone by Stuart and Go Boy 7 by Tom — proof that there is life after DC Comics.
In the small world department, this was not the first time I’ve been to Herkimer. The “real world” company I work for, Preload, Inc., built a concrete water storage tank there in the fall of 2001 and I visited the site during the construction. That tank sits directly across the parking lot from where the Mighty Mini-Con was held.
And if that wasn’t coincidence enough for one day, one of the guests at the con, Chris Watkins, pointed out that we had met before… six years ago during one of my summer teaching sessions for the Johns Hopkins University Center for Talented Youth program. Chris was introduced to me by one of the other instructors and we discussed the comics business at some length. Today, Chris does an online comic strip, “Electric Spirit,” (at http://www.borderwalker.com) and thanked me for spending the time and giving him insight into the industry.
And just to make the small world stuff ever more obvious, my son Chuck attended the con with me. Chuck is graduating from Princeton next month with a degree in Economics and did his senior thesis on web comics and how one could earn a living from such a venture. He and Chris had a lengthy discussion on the topic.
I’m pretty sure that Keith GRIFFIN and Keith Giffen are one and the same. The earliest Giffen art I recall is (if I’m not mistaking) in DEFENDERS #42 and the name listed is Keith Griffin.
— Harry Tzvi Keusch (email@example.com)
I don’t have the actual issue handy, but the Grand Comics Database (http://www.comics.org) lists Keith Giffen as the artist. As I said previously, only Keith can tell us for sure.
Concerning Metamorpho’s sudden return to life — I’m not sure when he came back either, but I think it bears mentioning that this isn’t the first time. He was “killed off” towards the end of the first OUTSIDERS series, only to be resurrected some time later during Keith Giffen’s INVASION! crossover. The alien Dominators released a virus that affected — even killed — many DCU characters possessing the Metagene, while activating the same gene in previously normal folks. Somehow, that same virus restored Metamorpho’s remains, probably through the mystical process of Giffen wanting to use the character in the new JUSTICE LEAGUE EUROPE title. At the time, I believe the theory was put forth that due to Metamorpho’s unique molecular structure, he probably can’t really die at all, but only rendered inert for a period of time until something restores him.
— Blake M. Petit (BlakeP_NW@hotmail.com)
Metamorpho was not “killed” at all. I think the phrase Morrison used was “dispersed” or some such thing. He was reduced to a gaseous state and drifted about for a long while.
— Raymond Neal (firstname.lastname@example.org)
Regarding Metamorpho’s resurrection, the explanation was shown in the JLA/JSA SECRET FILES (though quite some time after he mysteriously turned up in DOOM PATROL). Basically, he was floating around as a spirit until some nasty types forced Simon Stagg to open his secret vault which contained (for some reason) the Orb of Ra. This (for some reason) allowed Rex to re-assume his physical form and he has since started floating round the DCU, appearing in BIRDS OF PREY and GOTHAM KNIGHTS.
— David Bedford (email@example.com)
Once again, not a question but I’ve read on you’re column about CANCELLED COMICS CAVALCADE. I found this site http://www.comicfandom.com/cancelled_comic_cavalcade.htm
and I hope I’m not getting anyone in trouble. I thought your readers would like to know that they can find the stories they’ve heard so much about.
— David H. Rangel (Badp@netzero.net)
After all these years, I discovered a site that has the pages of Canceled Comics Cavalcade, including SECRET SOCIETY OF SUPER VILLAINS #16 and 17. SSoSV #17 ended with a cliffhanger, revealing the Silver Ghost’s identity. Unfortunately, his face is unclear (pencils only). What was the Silver Ghost’s ID, and what was his relationship to Rod (Firebrand) Reilly?
— Harry Tzvi Keusch (firstname.lastname@example.org)
I don’t know how happy DC’s legal department will be to learn about all that copyrighted material being posted (so you’d better click on over there soon if you want to read any of it).
As for the conclusion of the Freedom Fighters battle with the Secret Society, I told all in a column about three years ago. Thanks to the wonderful archiving system set up by SBC Big Kahuna Jason, you can read it by clicking over to http://www.silverbulletcomicbooks.com/bobro/96199065378826.htm.
Re: The Clark Kent Glasses Controversy
Forget the rest of the world, how is it that the residents of Smallville don’t recognize Superman and Clark Kent as being the same guy?! In post-Crisis continuity, Clark Kent never wore glasses until he reached adulthood… in fact, John Byrne made it very clear in The Man of Steel mini-series that Clark spent the first 25-odd years of his life looking exactly like, well… Superman! You’d think that someone back home would’ve made the connection by now, no? Smallville may be some quaint, backwoods farm town, but they’re not Amish. They still have access to TV and newspapers and the internet. Granted, the red cape and blue tights may be a bit distracting at first, but I’m sure someone in Smallville has to have noticed by now that this Superman fella looks awful familiar in the face. To Byrne’s credit, he at least tried to address this issue peripherally by establishing the now-notorious “vibrating face” trick… but I think that this notion has been abandoned by even the editors themselves.
The recently-announced Mark Waid Superman series promises a new look at the origin of the character. One would presume Mark will have his own ideas about the recognizability (I just made that word up!) of Clark with and without his glasses. In any event, I suspect we will continue to beat this topic to death in the weeks to come.
In case you were wondering about the answers to the quiz: 1 (b), 2 (c), 3 (a), 4 (a), 5 (b), 6 (d), 7 (d), 8 (c), 9 (b), 10 (c).
And if you enjoy trivia (and want to a shot at the prizes from my “Cabinet of Goofy Stuff”), don’t forget to check out my daily Anything Goes Trivia at www.worldfamouscomics.com/trivia. And I’ll see you back here again next week.