Latimer: My love of comic book characters comes from the past; the not so, and yet so, distant past. Back in the mid 90s, Saturday mornings were filled with marvel cartoons. Ah yes, despite it being a non-school day I would be up at the crack of dawn to see them, my favourite being X-men (and come on, I can still hum that epic opening tune!).
Sometimes I had to watch Spiderman, or The Incredible Hulk, to get to X-men; now Spiderman I didn’t mind, but God, the Incredible Hulk left me feeling so depressed (even as a child). Nothing ever, ever, went right for Bruce Banner.
I traveled with him, though he didn’t notice, and every episode the promise of a hulk-cure made me feel elated along with Bruce and we’d go together to the place of promised salvation, only to find it wasn’t what we thought and then we’d leave – him with ripped clothes and inevitable fleeing from the army, and me, with a broken heart and dejected for about an hour afterward.
In my reality of Saturday morning cartoons, ‘Earth 90s’, Bruce never found a cure. Also, his cousin became the She-Hulk… Which, by the way, what the hell was the deal there?
How come she became this buxom babe with full control of her powers (remained a practicing lawyer) and Bruce… Bruce was essentially this instinct-driven beast. Well, in the cartoons a least this was never explained (only that she was really, really happy to be the She-Hulk, well in fairness, she looked amazing, of course she didn’t mind!).
Then there was Spiderman, where I left him… let’s see, vaguely I remember he was searching for Mary-Jane (she had gone missing, then he had found her again, for a while, only it turned out she wasn’t really Mary-Jane she was a water clone! Yeeaah…).
A water clone who evaporates and is no more! It was horrific to me at the time, honestly it still kind of is…
He never found the real Mary-Jane in my Earth 90s. Either I stopped watching (that’s unlikely!) or they stopped showing it (more likely!).
The X-men was the same; I remember lots of stories. I remember I really didn’t like boring, boring, Jean Grey (she was always collapsing – always – even though subsequently I found out that she is one of the strongest mutants in Marvel – what the…?!).
Oh my God, and I remember Jubilee… argh, she was so pointless (sparks… seriously? You are lucky Wolverine was your friend, that’s all I’m saying!).
Rogue and Gambit – now this is me all over; perfect couple, I shipped them all the way! I also remember Cyclops and Jean Grey got married (okay I didn’t like her but I shipped them – I still ship them, ships are hard to leave).
fantastic fanart by New Moon Night Mike Choi
Now in Earth 90s, Gambit and Rogue never kissed and couldn’t touch, because of Rogue’s powers, but in comics… love must’a found a way! I’m fan-girl squee-ing even after all these years…
They brought the X-men cartoon back; years and years later and I watched it, but it just wasn’t the same anymore. Spiderman’s not the same, and God, I’m not watching the Hulk. There’s a time for everything and my days of watching them had passed – unless it’s my other thought, that 90s cartoons were just better.
This brings me full circle; recently I’ve being sticking a toe (here and there) back into the Marvel world, via comics. There is some absolutely beautiful, gorgeous artwork in comics too…
Stunning image of Magneto (who survived a concentration camp) by Marko Djurdjevic… Stunning
I’m now skirting around the great cosmic comic-world windows, peaking in and going; ‘ohh, err, can I come in? I think I’m ready!’. This I should warn you, is how obsessions start for me!
In preparation for my skipping into comic books (baring in mind, I know very little and these are just random nuggets I uncovered!) – I have found out some strange things about the heroes I actually never knew at all…
Firstly (and shockingly) Peter Parker… is dead… seriously… You killed Peter Parker…. What…?
There are only like 200 mutants left in the Marvel universe following a big ‘event’ (an epic arc of a story that crosses across lots of titles etc)… WHAT?! NOOO, they are the coolest thing in Marvel!
Jean Grey is dead… Do I care…? Argh, yes, with age I now care, because she married Cyclops and damn it, a ship must not sink while part of me is still on it, or I turn into a pumpkin! Save me Marvel!
Cyclops was unfaithful when married to Jean Grey – okay, hold on a damn minute, I’m not happy about this! He is now, subsequently, having a relationship with the mutant he was having an affair with – a mutant called Emma Frost (who was played by January Jones in X-men: First Class). Main thought here; ‘Oh NO you didn’t…!’ Of course on the other side I wouldn’t be surprised if Jean Grey had a fling with Wolverine… I can tell relationships in comics will hurt me
Jean Grey is not happy when she finds out! In this instance, I am with you Jean, even though I don’t like you really…
Weirder still, Cyclops has turned into like a revolutionary leader for mutants (where Magneto is almost his second in command!) and he’s – my thought? ‘When did Cyclops get so interesting?’
What the hell… Cyclops has gone mad! MAD!
AND Cyclopes killed Prof X… buh?
Don’t just stand there! This isn’t going to end well Prof!
Hard to know how permanent that is, he’s died ALOT apparently! As has Cyclops!
Cyclops is in jail… look at this. God, what happened to him, what made him turn into this character? I really want to know! What a spiral from the pure boy scout I remember!
Psychologically what the hell happened to you?
Wolverine is on the opposing side to Cyclops. He also runs a school for mutants…
Okay this is weird, but I’m intrigued by this school (there seems to be some interesting characters there)…
There are so many stories that happened before and after my time; the world of the Marvel characters is far bigger than I realised. Earth 90s was an introduction and I thought it was the story. It’s funny really, but I’m starting to wonder again about all those crazy characters. I love a good story and I really did love those characters.
Okay, it may be time to open the door to that comic book world, step in and have a look around 🙂