Firestorm Fan Rotating Header Image

Bob Haney Showcase IV with Metamorpho – FIRE & WATER #148

Firestorm and Aquaman: The Fire and Water Podcast

The 148th episode of THE FIRE AND WATER PODCAST is now available for your listening pleasure! THE FIRE AND WATER PODCAST is the official podcast of FIRESTORM FAN and THE AQUAMAN SHRINE.

Back by popular demand, it’s another Bob Haney Showcase, this time focusing on Metamorpho, The Element Man! Shag profiles “The Freak and the Billion-Dollar Phantom” by Haney and Ramona Fradon from First Issue Special #3 (June 1975), and then Rob tackles “How To Make A Super-Hero” by Haney and Jim Aparo from Brave and the Bold #123 (Dec. 1975) starring Batman, Plastic Man, and Metamorpho! It’s more Zany Haney! Don’t forget kids, use the hashtag #ZanyHaney online for this episode!

You can find the 148th episode of THE FIRE AND WATER PODCAST on iTunes. While you’re there, please drop us a review on the iTunes page. Every comment helps! Alternatively, you may play the podcast using the player below or by right-clicking “download”, choosing “Save Target/Link As”, and selecting a location on your computer to save the file (72 MB).

As always, thanks to my co-host Rob Kelly, Sea King of THE AQUAMAN SHRINE, for doing all the post-production on these episodes!

Have a question or comment? Looking for more great content?

#ZanyHaney Fire and Water Podcast

Thanks for listening! Support Firestorm and Aquaman! Fan the Flame and Ride the Wave!

Related Posts with Thumbnails


  1. Xum Yukinori says:

    Thank you for making part of my Thanksgiving weekend trek home from Colorado more enjoyable, gentlemen. My kids want me to pull out these two comics from my longboxes to read before bedtime tonight…

    Regarding the Metamorpho animated series, my understanding from a Brian Cronin “Comic Book Legends Revealed” article is that the Metamorpho and Plastic Man series plans were put on hold in favor of rushing out a new Batman animated series when Filmation suddenly managed to attain the rights in 1968.

    Can you imagine how neat it would have been to hear the booming voice of Ted Knight say:

    Fab freak of a thousand-and-one changes!
    Able to transmute his body into any element and form he can imagine!
    Once soldier-of-fortune Rex Mason!
    Now transformed by a mysterious meteorite, he uses his amazing chemical powers to fight evil!
    Along with his beautiful girlfriend, Sapphire,
    He travels the globe in search of a cure… and adventure!
    Metamorpho! The Element Man!”

    I always thought Jim Aparo was the best artist to draw Metamorpho after Ramona Fradon (and it was nice that she came back to illustrate the First Issue Special story). In fact, I always loved the Brave and the Bold series because I liked Mr. Aparo’s take on so many other DC Comics characters…

    Ruby Ryder makes one final appearance in a two-part story in The Brave and the Bold #135 and #136… so I suppose that is technically two more appearances…

    Pom Poms was a bite-sized chocolate-covered caramel candy that is similar to Milk Duds, though I believe Milk Duds may have been in the market first by a few years or decades (that narrows it down…). I remember seeing Pom Poms in the 1970s under Nabisco, which also sold sister product Junior Mints. And the reason I am mentioning that is, when Tootsie Roll Industries essentially took over the production, they changed the name of Pom Poms to “Junior Caramels” to better connect the two sister products. 

    Rob, I am sure you will have a blast going through some of the other First Issue Specials. I myself have a soft spot for “Dingbats of Danger Street” only because it demonstrates how Jack Kirby would draw a caricature of… myself.

    You will know it when you see it… 

  2. Listening to the Zanyness now, but I have often heard the designation of “Earth-B” used, I believe “officially” by DC beginning with an answer in one of Bob Rozakis’ old “Ask the Answer Man” columns. The “B” stood for Bob Haney, Murray Boltinoff, and The Brave and the Bold.


    1. Kyle Benning says:

      I want to live on Earth-B. Wish they’d bring it back!

  3. Man, it’s great to hear you guys having fun with your comics. I always enjoy the show, but when you two are excited by the comics you cover, it makes me want to leave work and go dig into my longboxes.

    If you guys want some more awesome Fradon artwork from around this time, check out the Super Friends comic. It’s a whole lot of fun, written by the Anti-Haney, E. Nelson Bridwell. Where Haney eschewed continuity, Bridwell wallowed in it, desperately trying to make the Super Friends fit into “real” DC Earth-One continuity. But the majority of the series is drawn by Miss Fradon, and it’s spectacular stuff. An overlooked Bronze Age gem, for sure.

    I find it ironic that this particular issue caused Barr so much grief in the long run. Heck, Aparo drew this AND Barr’s Outsiders, and Barr himself “replaced” Haney as the semi-regular writer of B&B before the title morphed into BATO.

    Plastic Man’s down-on-his-luck woes continued into B&B #148, where Batman finds him operating as a sidewalk Santa! From there, Haneyness ensues! No Ruby Ryder, but Bob continues his portrayal of Plas as a luckless loser…which no one else ever picked up on! I cover this issue in the Back Issue article Rob plugged (thanks!).

    As for the next Zany Haney, I’d love to see you guys do the Teen Titans. If you could squeeze another one in before Christmas, I’d suggest issue #13’s classic “The TT’s Swinging Christmas Carol”, but if not, then how about issue #3, where they take on Ding-Dong Daddy? The final Haney B&B/Titans issue #149 would make for a nice combo.


  4. Michael Chiaroscuro says:

    Oh man, this was a blast! It made me realize just how much I really do love Metamorpho, a character I’ve had an affection for since Batman and the Outsiders (get in your jibes now, Shag) but tend to take for granted. I’ve never read any of his early adventures from Haney and Fradon and damn I really wish they’d just collect them along with the 1st Issue Special and assorted backups into one generous sized color trade paper collection. I’d buy the heck out of that.

    The Metamorpho song is one of the most 1960s pieces of pop culture I’ve ever heard, and every time I heard it (mostly on your show), I smile broadly. It’s amazing. Fantastic. Sublime. GROOVY.

    Okay, so it’s not like I don’t have enough books yet to read, but this Metamorpho special has made me want to seek out anything featuring the character, including making me think it’s about damn time I pulled the trigger on ordering the Jim Aparo Legends of the Dark Knight Vol. 2, which features this Brave and the Bold story you covered. I own a few of the issues from that volume, but I really need to spring for this collection. It’s moved to the top of my wishlist. Thanks guys, more money will be leaving my bank account soon.

    So, for the next Zany Haney, I humbly suggest The Teen Titans Lost Annual. It’s from 2008 and I only discovered it earlier this year. And don’t let that 2008 publication date throw you – the book might as well have been published in 1964. It’s NUTS, in the very best way possible. So in other words, it’s typical Zany Haney. And the art from Jay Stephens and Mike Allred is gorgeous, so that’s a nice bonus. I’m no expert on Haney, but I wonder if it’s his last work for DC? I assume he passed away sometime soon after, right? So, check it out, and please add it to your rotation to cover – you won’t be disappointed!

  5. Kyle Benning says:

    YAY!!! ZANY HANEY!!!

    Great Instock Trades picks, I’ve long wanted the Wednesday Comics collection, had it on my Christmas list for years now, really hoping that this is finally the year I get it! Of course when I go on buying sprees, it always slips my mind to pick this one up.

    Metamorpho is my favorite member of the Outsiders, definitely the biggest draw to that title for me, outside of seeing a Batman drawn by Aparo of course.

    I really dig that early 90’s Metamorpho mini-series, drawn by Graham Nolan before he jumped on the Bat Books if I’m remembering correctly. Good stuff, love those eclectic gems from that era of DC.

    Rex Mason’s fantastic life-like human mask should be a super-power onto itself. I assume he gets his mask from the same shop that gives Batman his Matches Malone mask that looks life like even with the cowl underneath.

    Great episode! The comic podcasting world needs to give Metamorpho more love, he is a fantastic character! C’mon, some out there start a Metamorpho podcast!

  6. rob! says:

    C’mon, some out there start a Metamorpho podcast!

    Comes with pre-fab theme music!

Leave a Reply to Kyle Benning