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WHO’S WHO: Update ’88 Podcast, Volume 1

Who's Who: The Definitive Podcast of the DC UniverseThe Fire and Water Podcast Network Presents… WHO’S WHO: UPDATE ’88 PODCAST, volume 1!

The first episode of our WHO’S WHO UPDATE ’88 podcast is now available — the show that dares to tackle one of DC Comics’ greatest publications! Each episode Rob and I cover a single issue of the legendary 1980s series, Who’s Who: The Definitive Directory of the DC Universe. This time around we chat about WHO’S WHO: UPDATE ’88, volume 1, discussing characters such as Atom II, Doctor Fate II, Duchess, Firestorm, Green Arrow, Green Flame, Green Lantern, and more! We wrap up with your Listener Feedback! This episode sponsored in part by!

You can find the first episode of WHO’S WHO: UPDATE ’88 on iTunes. Each episode is released as part of THE FIRE AND WATER PODCAST feed. While you’re on iTunes, please drop us a review. 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 (164 MB).

Thanks to my co-host Rob Kelly, Sea King of THE AQUAMAN SHRINE, for doing all the post-production on this episode! Special thanks to Daniel Adams and Ashton Burge with their band The Bad Mamma Jammas for our fantastic Who’s Who theme song!

One of the coolest aspects of each Who’s Who issue was the amazing wrap-around cover! Check out this exceptional cover by Ty Temploton! Click the image to enlarge.

Who's Who Update 88 #1 cover by Ty Templton

Here are your Firestorm-related Who’s Who entries from this issue…

First up is Firestorm himself! The “Blank Slate” version of the character as he appeared in Firestorm the Nuclear Man Annual #5! Click to enlarge.

Who's Who Update 88 Firestorm by Joe Brozowski

Up next is Ray Palmer, the Atom! Ray Palmer served as a scientific adviser to Ronnie Raymond when he was flying solo as Firestorm in the late 1990s and early 2000s. Click the image to enlarge!

Who's Who Update 88 The Atom by Dwayne Turner

Support Firestorm (and the WHO’S WHO podcast)! Fan the flame!

Related Posts with Thumbnails


  1. Frank says:

    1) I was very complementary of Ty Templeton’s work on the Blue Devil Secret Origin, in sharp contrast to my opinion of his Who’s Who Update ’88 covers, which I thought were the worst run of any of the series. The characters were too close up, so that instead of a multitude of figures interacting, they were mostly a wave of head shots and entirely too much wasted space. In this case, at least a fifth of the wraparound image is a blue gradient, and it’s at the freaking center line! Dr. Mist’s face takes up the lower left quarter of the back cover! Even taking this stylistic choice into account, those faces are fairly basic without the delicate flourishes of an Alex Toth or a Paul Smith, and the actual full figures are so lacking in detail that Larry Marder might as well have done them. Not everybody can be Perez, but this felt like such a cheat by comparison. At least Ernie Colon was interestingly bad.

    A) I didn’t fully understand the concept of the retcon as a kid, so when I first saw Amazing Man, I was impressed DC had a black hero in the 1940s. I used to think his costume was hideous, but as I got older, I came to appreciate the uniqueness of the green and yellow color scheme. Honestly, if Will Everett were white, I wouldn’t care for him one bit, but instead I perhaps overvalue him as the only African-American DC hero closely associated with World War II (even if he’s got less of a legitimate period vintage than Wolverine.) While you could cry foul on his being an heroic Absorbing Man, that’s still a heck of a lot more distinctive than magnetism, so I’m glad his ’90s legacy defaulted back to his first power set (though I think he’d be cooler outright stealing the real Golden Age Amazing Man’s look and more basic abilities.) I liked the tweaks made to Amazing Man II’s costume, and he was one of the only good things about Extreme Justice. Too bad he was murdered by the Mist in Starman and then replaced by Ving Rhames. At least James Robinson came out and said he wasn’t meant to actually be dead, given his enormous powers, but later writers preferred him buried, I suppose. Dynamic art for Howard Simpson #BackhandedCompliment

    B) Power of the Atom was arguably the worst thing that ever happened to Ray Palmer, which is saying something. It ran only 18 issues at a time when 25 were virtually guaranteed for an ongoing series, and despite THE NEW DC– THERE’S NO STOPPING US NOW hype, felt entirely like a bland Bronze Age throwback. I understand the loose hair look for Sword of the Atom (more than I do wearing a mark at all under those circumstances,) but here it’s merely a harbinger of the ’90s cliche of ripping up a quality Silver Age design to make a square hero look hipper (followed inevitably by a superfluous brown vest.) They didn’t stop there though, making one of the few old school heroes to wear pants take up the hoary “underwear on the outside” look, presumably to bring him closer to his short-lived animated incarnation. I want the record to be made perfectly clear that I DID NOT recommend this book to Shag, and in fact tried to warn him of its “meh, if you can get them cheap” pseudo-merits.

    C) I like Axis America, which is to see Übermensch looks cool(er than Master Man) and the concept is appealing, but it’s too bad about the execution. Axis America came back in a somehow inferior form in Kelly/Mahnke JLA, plus there was Aryan Brigade in JLTF. I think Nazis work well in a period setting, but that their descendants were rendered so cartoonishly in the media for decades that it forced white supremacy into acting more covertly, like Hydra or Trump supporters. I prefer them out in the open with their spiffy uniforms instead of hiding under bad toupees.

    D) I bought the first half year of Action Comics Weekly as a back issue in 1989 in anticipation of reading them over the summer, only for most of the run to be swiped from me during the school year. I did skim some issues, and found them mostly not so good, so I can’t explain my compulsion. I’m just glad I didn’t feel like I missed anything, especially when I read the remaining/later acquired issues. However, I far and away preferred Blackhawk to any of the other strips. It retained some of Chaykin’s unsavory “realism,” but mostly skewed toward an update of Milt Caniff. As a I recall, Marty Pasko did many of the stories, and Rick Burchett did most/all of the run, even on to the short-lived ongoing series. Appreciated the revamped P.C. Weng Chan & Natalie Reed.

    E) You’d have to ask Paul Kupperberg, but his books took on many of the lesser loved Charlton Action Heroes, and I suspect Black Thorn was intended as a revamp of Nightshade that was rejected either because Captain Atom wanted to use her or the design offended Dick Giordano’s eyeballs. I’ve never been overly fond of Steve Erwin, but Al Vey is one of the greatest inkers in the industry.

    F) The only time I ever read and enjoyed The Flash regularly on purpose was during the Baron/Guice run. My recollection is that Blue Trinity started out as commie foes of Wally West, but they defected and he befriended them. They became a super speed messenger service, and Flash was briefly employed by the same company. Speed Demon had intentionally warped anatomy, so maybe they underwent the same process?

    H) I don’t know who thought Zippy the Pinhead should be the model for the Brainiac of the 1980s, but they were mistaken.

    I) I read a few issues of Checkmate in the late ’80s/early ’90s after liking their intro in Byrne Superman, and decided it was the single most boring comic book I’d ever read up to that point and for years afterward. It didn’t lack for action, but it was written and drawn so dully, they might as well have been DC’s Agents of I.R.S. I wouldn’t even read issues of other series that crossed over with it. “It looked at Harvey Bullock and saw a candidate for the C.I.A.” is an excellent summation/condemnation of the book.

    J) Between Black Mass, Chunk, and a second thought given to a Cosby joke, you’re welcome. This guy was also around during my Flash reading, plus he turned up in Eclipso. I didn’t mind him. I’m skipping the Crimson Avenger now.

    I) Like Shag, I had little to no contact with Danny Chase prior to Titans Hunt, but I did go back and read issues from a year or two prior (late Barreto/early Grummett.) He was routinely hated on in the letters column, and he could be jerky sometimes, but what precocious maladjusted thirteen year old boy isn’t? I think either he hit too close to home with the readership, or he fell victim to the global problem of ginger persecution. I liked him more than Chunk, maybe, I guess.

    J) I left one of a series of very long comments on the Secret Origins podcast about Dr. Fate. An abridged version is I want Shag to take everything he relayed about the ’80s series and chuck it in the bin along with any further Electric Boogaloo jokes. Given the revamp, Doctor Fate 2: The Quickening seems more apropos anyway.

  2. Xum Yukinori says:

    Another great episode so far, gentlemen. I have listened up to the beginning of the feedback section, but I thought I would submit some answers and random comments on the issue itself while they are still fresh in my mind:

    BLUE TRINITY: According to page 1 of Flash v2 #8, Gregor Gregorivich was “The first human specifically designed to live comfortably at 700 MPH.” So I presumed his misshapen anatomy was intentional and possibly due to genetic modification.

    BLACKHAWKS: The first “Lady Blackhawk” from the Quality Comics, who first appeared in issue #40 of the first Blawkhark series, was actually named “She-Hawke”, and her real name was (wait for it…) Sheila Hawke. I believe she was a rich debutante that was inspired by the Blackhawks to create the “She-Hawke” identity.

    CHUNK: The “THE CHUNK!” logo was taken right off the cover of Flash v2 #9, which may explain the exclamation point.

    DANNY CHASE: I do remember this character’s “Phantasm” phase when Danny Chase pretended to be dead to be one of the more interesting concepts (at least to me) of the otherwise uninspiring (again, at least to me) “Titan’s Hunt” storyline, though I found the “mystery” behind who the Phantasm was to be blatantly obvious. I must admit I did enjoy the portrayal of Danny Chase during the brief times Marv Wolfman and George Pérez worked together again on the Titans series – especially during the (not so) recent “Games” graphic novel in which Pérez depicted him as a young River Phoenix.

    DR. FATE: I did not read this new direction of the series, but it was interesting to hear that the “original” (albeit retconned) intention of Dr. Fate was to be a merging of Kent and Inza. Interesting fact: Nabu, Kent, and Inza actually merged into the Dr. Fate form once in the back-up story in The Flash v1 #313, which I believe was reprinted in the “The Immortal Dr. Fate” deluxe edition reprint mini-series.

    DR. MIST: I briefly remember that short-lived “adorable” Zatanna costume from Secret Origins v2 #27, though I do not remember it ever being shown again after that story…

    DUMAS: Anyone who had seen the “thick-headed” A&W Root Beer television advert campaign may have thought of a third alternative for pronouncing this name…

    FIRESTORM: Joe Brozowski is actually renowned (or it that notorious) for re-using (re: swiping) artwork, as we will see eventually when we start covering those issues in future episodes of THE FIRE AND WATER PODCAST…

    Of course, many of my “Xum’s Who” entries lifted (and will continue to lift) a lot of existing comic panel artwork from artists (though they are credited), so my apologies in advance for that…

  3. Xum Yukinori says:

    FOREVER PEOPLE: I would definitely be sold on an “Up With Forever People” Hanna Barbera cartoon with Mel Blanc as “Speed Cycle”…

    GANGBUSTER: The decapitated woman’s head is Lois Lane’s, by the way. This was during the time she and Delgado were starting to become romantically involved, I believe.

    GHOST: I am curious if the “other purpose” for that full-color Broderick-Janke pin-up artwork was for the Captain Atom series… or even the canceled “Comics Cavalcade Weekly” project…

    G’NORT: Another take on this joke character: the producers of “Green Lantern: The Animated Series” uses “G’nortz” as a curse word used by Kilowog on numerous occasions (and Hal used it a few times as well)…

    GODIVA: Though I see her as a “one-time” character, she did show up one more time in the New Teen Titans series (issue #44 of the Baxter run), and then in a minor role in a Wonder Woman issue in the early naughties that featured a team of several female villains led by Circe.

    GREEN FLAME: I believe the “radiator pillow” Green Flame is leaning on is actually a bag of charcoal. And Shag is actually correct in his use of the term “voracity”, which is an actual word that means “the quality of being voracious”. What’s more, Shag actually pronounced it correctly (vaw-RASS-ih-tee).

    HARLEQUIN: As the Who’s Who entry has no doubt stated, the Marcie Cooper version of this character was inspired by the Golden Age Molly Mayne version, who also wielded a mandolin. Duela Dent’s Harlequin never used that instrument, but did sport a checkerboard pattern on parts of her costume, I believe…

    More to come. My thanks for the hours of fun and somewhat-nostalgia, gentlemen…

  4. This is the only “comic-book format” DC Universe Who’s Who I still happen to own (specifically because of Firestorm’s inclusion, of course). I do have both issues of the Star Trek edition, and at least a couple loose-leaf editions (although those are currently stored in combined alphabetical order).

    Shag often says “find your joy,” and I very much appreciate the concept, but when Rob hates something, BOY does he get nasty about it! What did Danny Chase do to you? I have no emotional investment in the character, myself, but he seems to be guilty of nothing more than being a normal-, if perhaps geeky-, looking human being in a super-hero comic. And since quite a few of us who became comic book fans fall into some of that stereotype, I struggle to see that as sufficient reason for the kind of vitriol Rob heaped on the character. Seriously, dude, what’s the problem? Shag lets his feelings be known, too, but perhaps it’s just his personality. When he openly mocks something, it feels more like a joke we’re invited to laugh along with. Rob’s intense hatred just made me want to squirm. Dude, “find your joy,” remember?

    1. Shag says:

      Mark – I might be speaking out of turn, but I think Rob was really playing for laughs with Danny Chase. I think he’s pretty indifferent about the character. While we take the research pretty seriously, the podcast is essentially for entertainment. I think you might be taking it more seriously than intended. Thanks for the comments and thanks for listening!

      1. Fair enough. Like I said, most of the time when you do it, it feels like a joke we’re invited to laugh along with. I’ve not been getting that vibe from Rob. Perhaps it’s just because he’s the “straight man” of your comedy-duo.

        Neither of you are expected to like every character, of course.

        1. Shag says:

          Rob’s got a really sharp dry wit. I love it. He cracks me up. Mainly because he’s wrong all the time, and I’m right.

          All’s good. We’re all buddies here in the Nuclear Submarine!

  5. rob! says:

    Shag is right. I am indifferent to Danny Chase, since I have never read a single comic book with him in it. I simply thought it was funny to lean in to the hyperbole and act as though he’s the worst thing since Hitler (which he is).

    Consequently, on the other side, remember my unvarnished, bordering-on-cult-like love of Lady Cop, based on all of one comic book? So I can go the other way at times.

    1. I apologize if I took it too far, myself. See my response to Shag above.

      1. Shag says:

        All’s good. We’re all buddies here in the Nuclear Submarine!

  6. Darrin and Ruth says:

    Another great episode of Who’s Who as always. Just halfway through right now, but wanted to drop a note.

    I definitely think Green Arrow deserved an updated listing. New costume, new location, and new “urban hunter” storyline. I honestly think the version of Green Arrow by Mike Grell redefined the character in a way that still resonates today as can be seen in the Arrow TV series.

    It’s a shame that Mike Grell didn’t draw the entry, but since Hannigan and Diordano were drawing the main series, it makes sense. I think the two of them do an admirable job in the comic and the style matches Mike Grell’s Longbow Hunters quite well.

    Like Shagg, I think the top half of the drawing looks great, but do have to agree with Rob that those legs are just wrong.

    Since they are two of my favorite characters, I’ve always liked that both Aquaman and Green Arrow debuted in the same issue of More Fun Comics and were both co-created by Mort Weisinger

    Thanks sincerely for the shout-out for Warlord Worlds. It’s great fun covering the many fantastic titles by Mike Grell!

    Sadly, I don’t think Mercy St Clair will turn-up in Who’s Who, so I don’t think you’ll get a chance to plug Trekker Talk :-)

    Take care Shagg and Rob!


  7. JoeX says:

    Hey, once we hit the Legion and non-DCU titles, can we get an updated theme song?

    Love Ty the Guy, and I suppose you could ask him at or @tytempleton
    I like that the Forever People aren’t paying attention, and looking towards the background. Ch’p looks more like the original Don Newton version than the toon Staton one.
    Danny Chase’s hair is miscolored, that’s why he looks like a viable character. Kamikaze seems to be the only Axis Amerika to make the cover.

    Yeah, Amazing Man’s powers went from Absorbing Man to Yankee Poodle. I do like that his heroic descendents kept the original powers.

    Killing the little yellow people was the impetus for the Power of the Atom series, the CIA was behind it so he would work for them/

    Axis Amerika was part of Roy’s “replace the lost 5″ effort that dragged down Young All-Stars.
    It has Gudra’s first appearance as YAS#1, but wasn’t she supposed to be the Valkyrie for the JDA origin in DC Special #29?

    The Pasko/Burchett Blackhawk series was a blatant Terry & the Pirates knockoff, but it was pretty good.
    The only Blackhawk to show up in the late 80s DC was Chop Chop, who ran Blackhawk Express.

    Yeah, Blue Trinity were deformed by the experiments that created them. Christina ended up as Lady Savitar later on.

    Koenig is German for King. This version of the Checkmate concept would make a good TV show

    Chunk also started dating Wally’s supermodel ex, but was dropped as soon as Waid took over the book.

    In continuity at the time, Crimson Avenger was the first costumed DC hero. Was hoping you could avoid the Greg brooks joke as well.

    Wasn’t Danny Chase editorially mandated to add more actual teens to Teen Titans? He’s the Titans version of Cousin Oliver.

    KALI YUGA! NO! DeMattheis spewed that crap all over the DCU in the 80s, and it still hurts.

    Tom Artis did Tailgunner Jo, and the Web for Impact, but doesn’t seem to have any credits in the last 20 years.

    Doom Patrol. Erik Larsen. Bring on Invasion and Grant Morrison, please.

    John K Snyder inked McDonnell for a while, and he was way too loose.

    Didn’t Dumas end up being one of the Paul Kirk clones as well?

    Gangbuster appeared in the Busiek/Bagley Trinity weekly comic, and still sucked.
    The Gangbuster costume statement is exactly the same thing you guys were ripping on Wild Dog for last time.

    Godiva looks more like Shawn McManus art to me.

    Bea could also fly by shooting flame from her nostrils.

    GLC has Eddore of Tront, Driq and Flodo Span! Why didn’t Johns and Ross use them when dragging the DCU back to pre-Crisis status?

    There is ONE Infinity Inc entry. And it sucks, like the book did at that point. I think the costume could be done more easily today with computers.

    “Mort-bag”! BWA HA HA HA HA!!!!

    I listened to Siskoid’s Invasion podcast, and it was pretty good.

  8. Greetings From Naltor!

    Is it just me, or does this Brainiac (especially on the cover) not resemble Svenghouli, the horror film host from cable tv?

    The cover does seem odd the way it doesn’t feature Green Lantern, Firestorm, or Green Arrow in “spotlight” positions. And The Ghost definitely looks like the KKK there. And Danny Chase definitely looks like Tim Hunter aka Harry Potter. I wonder if the colorist didn’t realize who he was and colored his hair brunette by mistake.

    I had forgotten my Planet Master comment, so was pleasantly surprised to hear my name and email on the Listener Feedback. Thanks, guys!

  9. Michael Chiaroscuro says:

    That Ty Templeton cover! Gorgeous! I remember being wowed by his Update ’88 covers when I first saw them at the comics shop back then.

    Dr. Occult looks so badass in this entry I still can’t get over that ludicrous origin story – his REAL name is Doc Occult so he got a PhD to make his name valid?!? Really?!? Ugh. It’s so stupid it hurts my brain. Anyway, beautiful work by Stasi and Rankin in this one. And I love how his right eye is colored yellow, in contrast to the overall green used in the surprint. Nice touch.

    Dr. Fate. I’ve said it here before, but I do really like Giffen’s art during this period. I think he has a good handle on the character’s design, and while I favor Walt Simonson Dr. Fate above all else, I think Giffen’s will always have a nostalgic appeal to me because he was drawing him for a bit during this era when I was really getting into comics collecting.

    Duchess looks fantastic here too. I’m with you guys, I tend to waffle on his work – for instance, I think his work in the Deadshot miniseries from this era was stellar. Did he ink that himself too? Maybe, because that would explain why I love it and his Duchess piece.

    Green Arrow. I agree with you fellas, this isn’t that special. I like Hannigan too, and he certainly did some great covers in his day. And while I haven’t read much of this Green Arrow series, from what I did read I found most of Hannigan’s work on it to be fairly stiff and dull.

    Green Flame looks hot (ha ha, I couldn’t resist that one). Seriously though, as a kid reading Justice League, Beatrix had a very strong impact on young me. Especially that issue where she went undercover with Batman. Yikes. Consequently, to this day, I still have a big time crush on Green Flame/Fire. Plus I really love the Fire and Ice tandem, basically for the same reasons I love Booster Gold and Blue Beetle – they bring me joy. They’re a blast together, and after all these years I keep holding out hope that one day we’ll get a Fire, Ice, Booster, and Beetle series. Drawn by Kevin Maguire please. DC, are you listening? Fat chance, I know, but a guy can dream.

  10. Michael Chiaroscuro says:

    Sorry, for the Duchess comment I neglected to mention who I was referring to – it was Luke McDonnell, obviously.

  11. Anj says:

    Love this update as I feel the post-Crisis DC universe was really hitting its stride in ’88. Love the Templeton covers as well and anyone that can make the Forever People look cool needs a raise.

    Lots of comments this time.

    1) Shag’s discussion about all Batman stories actually still happening in continuity was embraced by Grant Morrison. He in fact wrote much of his run looking back at old stories. Batman Inc. Zurr-en-ahrr. It all leans heavily on stories from the ’50s that seemed ‘in continuity’.

    2) Axis Amerika – Anyone who is a Dune fan always will say ‘Tell me about your homeworld, Usil (sic)’. I have to say that for me, the craziest member of this group is Sea Wolf! An underwater breathing werewolf! That is insanity. As I always say, the early issues of Young All-Stars were drawn beautifully and made these guys look pretty good.

    3) Blackhawk(s) – I’ll say that I was a just coming into my love for Howard Chaykin around this time and I love that mini-series. The Chaykin mini is definitely placed during the war and not afterwards. Chaykin gave Blackhawk a standard liberal back story. Natalie Reed was also introduced in that mini-series. She was an ex-pat American who moved to Russia because she believed in Communism and a great aeronautic engineer and pilot. I love Zinda. But I like Natalie more as a character.

    4) Blue Trinity – I think the guy looks warped because steroids and implants don’t do a body good. They remind me of ‘Speed Demon’, another human who tried to get superspeed and whose body became weird looking. Lastly, I think the reason Red Trinity look more human is because they were the next iteration of experiments so not as stretched.

    5) Danny Chase – Rob saying he makes Jericho look like Nightwing made me laugh out loud. And hearing Rob throw him mercilessly under the bus despite not having read anything reminds me of the reverse of my love of some characters without a good reason. I have Hyathis, Golden Age Fury, Manhawks, and the Gang. Rob has the anti-love for Chase.

    6) Dr. Fate – I always thought the little blurby bubbly thing over Fate was a sort of nod to him being a lord of order. Weren’t shapes like that how Giffen portrayed them in their natural form?

    7) Doom Patrol – I’ll save my love of Lodestone for her own page

    8) Felix Faust – the artist drew the Zatara/Zatanna/Dr. Mist Secret Origins issue. Rob really was on his game with the zingers today. I’ll never look at that picture again without think of Cats. But clearly he would be dancing to ‘Magical Mr. Mestophiles’ not ‘Rum Tum Tugger’.

    9) Garguax – he reminds me so much of Sidney Greenstreet when drawn this way. “The stuff that dreams are made of!”

  12. Jeff R. says:

    Omissions are going to be weak in this series, especially since this time around they’ve changed to policy to exclude non-dc-universe titles. There are a lot of licensed characters who got books during the year in question (like Doc Savage or Flash Gordon) and a couple of things outside the DCU that fit alphabetically (Cinder and Ashe, maybe the Dead Detective from Wasteland), but it would be unfair to pick one of those. Also unfair would be expecting a full entry for the character find of 1988, Extrano, when he’s going to get covered under New Guardians. I could argue that Amethyst deserved a new entry with the changes to the character in the mini that year, but it hadn’t finished yet and I’m not on the revised entry beat anyhow. Batgirl could also have had a updated entry, but I don’t think they’d actually decided that The Killing Joke was in-continuity and that would have been a depressing update. Deacon Blackfire just barely misses the cut, having first appeared in Batman: The Cult #1 the same month as this issue. And I’m saving supporting character omissions for #4. So I’m stuck with The Flying Dutchman of Time as the pick for this issue.

    And you’re wrong. It absolutely is Guh-nort. If it were nort there wouldn’t be an apostrophe in there.

    1. Shag says:

      Jeff – Thanks for the comments. Flying Dutchman! Great Firestorm pick!

      Regarding Gnort… the pronunciation of “Nort” came directly from J.M. DeMatteis himself. Also, you referenced the apostrophe. … time to get glasses, buddy. No apostrophe. :)

      1. Xum Yukinori says:

        Also, the “G’nortz” swear word on Greeb Lantern TAS is pronounced “norts”…

      2. Jeff R. says:

        I could have sworn I’d seen it with in some books. I still have the “why would green lantern rings’ universal translators put in a silent letter when transliterating a completely alien language” issue, but I’ll accept it.

        Also, there’s actually a more egregious omission this month, but I’m going to group that character with two others in a future issue rather than have that group take two wins and an HM over the course of this series.

        1. Floyd Lawton says:

          I would swear on Batman Brave and the Bold it was “G’nort”. That was one of the funniest episodes of the series. My 5 year old can still recite the nonsense oaths that G’nort says before he gets to the right one.

  13. Heads up Shag: Felix Faust appeared on an episode of the late lamented Constantine in live action. He’s portrayed as an old man with dreams of grandeur and accolades but iOS ultimately a nobody. However he’s powerful and evil enough to be a threat.

    1. Is* not iOS. Stupid autocorrect.

  14. Anthony Durso/The Toyroom says:

    Cover: Ty Templeton is no George Perez (but who is?) but I like his take on the DCU with this series of covers. He also did the full-page house ad trumpeting this update revival if I recall.

    Re: The Comic vs. Loose-Leaf format of Who’s Who…I fall between Rob and Shagg on this. While there is some great artwork, I’m not a fan of the format. It’s…messy, to put it mildly. To this day I can (and do) still pull out the original series and its updates to re-read but don’t find myself dragging out my loose-leaf binder(s) with as much frequency.

    Amazing Man/Axis Amerika: What I think is amazing is how I (and others apparently) loved everything Roy Thomas did with DC’s Earth-2/Golden Age characters initially but then avoided them like the plague after the dust from Crisis on Infinite Earths had settled. Poor Roy was never able to get his mojo back after that debacle.

    The Atom: I was never a big (pun intended) fan of The Atom, although I have an appreciation for his classic Silver Age stories. Sword of the Atom was pretty good but I could care less about Power of the Atom. I’m probably one of the few people that liked the Tiny Titan’s role as part of Dan Jurgens’ Teen Titans series.

    Blue Trinity: It seems as though Wally West has been having problems with Russians since the Red Star (original Starfire) days of the Teen Titans…

    Brainiac: Stop me if you’ve heard this one before…Brainiac, Hawkman and Wonder Girl walk into a Post-Crisis bar and proceed to discuss who has the most convoluted continuity…

    Danny Chase: I too had lost interest in the New Teen Titans by this point. Once George Perez left the Baxter series it was kind of all downhill from there. I think he was more instrumental as a co-plotter than we might realize. Exactly when did Marv Wolfman start suffering his infamous bout with writer’s block? Was it before or after Danny Chase?

    Firestorm: On a whole, I have to say that a lot of the art in this issue is very lackluster. Not a lot of dynamic poses. This is a prime example. Horrible, absolutely horrible.

    G’nort: I pronounce it “Nort” as in Ed Norton. I don’t think the apostrophe should come in to play because J’onn J’onzz is pronounced John Jones, no?

    Green Arrow: Why is he aiming for Dr. Fate’s back on the cover? Shouldn’t people from the same Super Powers wave be friends?

    Harley Quinn: One of the most well-known and interesting characters of the last 25 years has never had a proper Who’s Who listing, either in original flavor or loose-leaf format. Think about that…
    (Paging Xum Yukinori?)

  15. Frank says:

    K) Like Amazing Man, is Dr. Mist an especially compelling character with a catalog of beloved stories? No. Is he an exceptionally powerful black super-hero unburdened with the “legacy” of a white forebearer and embedded for decades in a major comic book universe in desperate need of diversity? Why, yes he is, and that’s my primary point of interest. Did the absolute FUBAR that was the Zatanna origin retcon literally leave Dr. Mist FUBAR. Nah, especially factoring in the New 52/Rebirth. There’s still plenty of good material to work Dr. Mist up to at least the C-list.

    L) What is the deal with Dr. Occult? This dude is a nobody, but he gets a second Who’s Who entry, and deserves it, based purely on the rockin’ art. I still want to read a period adventure drawn in this art style, and I kinda have because he strongly resembles Max Allan Collins & Terry Beatty’s Mike Mist (who also resembled Dick Tracy, but without any supernatural elements or grotesqueries.)

    M) I understand the logic behind making the Doom Patrol more like the X-Men, given their very similar initial premises and character types. The problem is that it was the All-New, All-Different X-Men that took comics by storm, and that was a super-heroic riff on the Blackhawks formula. Original Flavor X-Men was one of the least popular properties of the classic Marvel period, and when it was recycled for New Mutants, nobody liked it so much as they bought it because it was the only other regular X-Men related series available. They were completely different from the Teen Titans, who were less “young green metahumans in training” and more “the unsupervised JLA of younger super-heroes.” Even then, the Titans were pretty anemic until they too became Blackhawks + capes + genre bending adventure soap opera. The Doom Patrol failed because they decided to start with the aftermath of The Dark Phoenix Saga via the death and overwrought mourning of their token female co-lead in Rita Farr, a good decade & a half gone already. Aside from Days of Future Past, that wasn’t even a good period for the actual X-Men, who coasted on the goodwill from John Byrne’s epic run until a couple years later with the Brood arc. This Doom Patrol was less X-Men than post-Byrne Alpha Flight, and as with that book, their saving grace ended up being their weirdness.

    I’ve never been a big Erik Larsen fan, but he benefited not only from his similarity to Todd McFarlane following his run on Amazing Spider-Man, but also in their shared ability to elevate their popularity through a crunch of excess detail that was not employed before moving to Marvel. Doom Patrol wasn’t quite up to Infinity Inc’s standard, which is rather damning. I do think that everyone but Robotman should have stayed dead, logically, but I also believe Elasti-Girl is more valuable to the DC Universe, especially today, than any of the rest of that lot. She’s a non-derivative Silver a Age heroine whose essential characteristics have been proven by The Incredibles and Monsters vs. Aliens. I recognize the contributions of Rebus & The Chief in Morrison’s run, but he was an imaginative enough writer to pull things off without them. Frankly, I think he rendered Niles Caulder radioactive by the time he was done, and that toxicity has impacted Doom Patrol as a property.

    N) Given how well received Duchess was, it’s a shame all her development was dropped as soon as she reverted back to Lashina. Also, I don’t think one figure drawing is enough to judge Luke McDonnell as an inker, especially when that inker should always be Bill Wray, because you don’t even have to look past the surprint before things descend into “just okay.”

    O) Dumas was an awesome villain in a suspenseful Manhunter mini-series that was unfortunately extended to a comparatively drab ongoing. The book never recovered from Dumas’ demise, and knew it, which is why they went all Son of Flattop in their latter days (which somehow extended even to the Chase Lawler & Kate Spencer series.) This is exactly the sort of character the New 52 should have revived, though I’m not sure anyone but Doug Rice can quite pull this guy’s look off.

    P) Felix Faust is another magic dude who has an outhouse icon on top of his helmet, plus the booties. No amount of impressive interpretive dancing can change that, and even when he gets bare-chested hawt necromancer redesigns, he’s still that dude named Felix.

    Q) Remember Wally Wood’s rule about never drawing what you can trace? Plus, maybe the budget on Who’s Who shrank with each volume, like Planet of the Apes sequels, and Firestorm is wearing a store-bought gorilla mask in the background?

    R) I think that even Fourth World diehards seeming not bring up The Amazing Technicolor Forever People says something.

    S) I went all the way back through comments of the previous two volumes of G characters certain that I’d previously discussed my instant and endless dislike of Gangbuster, only to be given one more reason by not finding any such thing. Why do Superman writers feel the need to feature non-powered costumed vigilantes in Metropolis? They just look like chumps, and Superman’s just humoring them, because if you’re not Batman you’re nothing compared to him. He’s looking at you as the basis for his Clark Kent dork role/Jules Feiffer critique of humanity. On tap of that, Gangbuster is wearing a dookie colored costume with numb chucks (not a typo) like that convenience store dood in Ghost World and a 1920s sidecar motorcycle helmet with that pathetic prohibition chest icon that was on everything from cigarettes to ghosts in the 1980s. And then… AND THEN… he’s basically the highest profile Latino superhero in the DCU but manages to get crippled in a Superman book subplot before getting totally shown up by Superman himself in his own retired-due-to-disability costume while Kal-El was off his nut for a triangle number or two before some editor decides a clone of an old timey c-lister is preferable to Jose Delwhitewash as the already lame ass not-Captain America Guardian. F this loser with all the Fs in a Scrabble set.

  16. JoeX says:

    *Checks Twitter feed*

    Wow, that’s a lot of Who’s Who tweets.

  17. Paul Hix says:

    Shag, thanks for the mentions of Waiting For Doom, the Doom Patrol podcast. It’s a little thing but we can see the podcast audience growing every time you do it.

    Rob, thanks for nothing.

  18. Phylemon says:

    Welcome back, gentlemen. A few thoughts:

    1. Sorry, Shag, I’m with Rob that things are going downhill from here. Who’s Who never got as good again as it was in the original 26 issue run. The only episodes I’m truly excited about coming up are the Star Trek ones, but I’m sure listening to you slogging through these next few issues will be entertaining.

    2. The cover is enjoyable, although there isn’t nearly enough interaction between the characters.The Ghost is definitely applying for Klan membership in the corner over there.

    3. I’m fairly sure it is only the Forever People facing away from the cover. It reminds me of the story from the Bible where God puts Moses in the cleft of the rock when He passes by because Moses couldn’t live if he saw the full glory of God’s face. In short, the Forever People are awesome.

    4. Atom: I spent a fair amount of Christmas money picking up Atom comics, including finishing out my collection of Power of the Atom. It will definitely had to be added to the “to-read” pile along with Checkmate and Manhunter. There is a surprising amount of late 80’s DC I have never read.

    5. Axis Amerika: I love the idea of a sea borne werewolf and would buy the heck out of a series like that. Not Sea Wolf, though. He’s horrible.

    6. Action Comics Weekly and Vigilante also need to be added to the “to-read” list. Heck, I’ve got some sick days stored up.

    7. Thanks, Shag. Now I can’t unsee the differences between the A’s in the Braniac logo.

    8. I completely agree that the Checkmate costume is an incredible design. Again, I know nothing about the series, but I’m fairly sure it can’t live up to the hype generated by these cool uniforms. As a side note, Konig (really Koenig) is German for King, so it may be continuing the Chess motif.

    9. If Chunk is really Chester Runk, shouldn’t his super name be “Crunk” instead of “Chunk”.

    10. Danny Chase is a total punk. He is really the Cousin Oliver of the DC Universe. I will take issue with Rob saying that Danny Chase makes Jericho look like Nightwing. I think what he meant was that Jericho makes Nightwing look like Danny Chase because he is so cool.

    11. Teen Titans Blog: I have no clue how y’all find time to do these podcasts and blogs and such, but I am half way through my reading of the Original Teen Titans and own all of the other issues, so I’m as qualified as any one, I suppose.

    12. Dr. Occult: How did neither of you mention the weird thing going on with the good doctor’s eye in the surprint. We’ve seen a couple of dual colored surprints, but never one used so capriciously.

    13. Junior Groups: Shag, not sure if this fits your thought process about this, but my mind always goes to Justice League Detroit. Poor in execution or not, I loved the idea of the experienced heroes training the new comers. I do wonder if this is a chicken-egg sort of thing. Are these junior groups popular because they spun into their own series, or did they spin into their own series because they were popular?

    14. Doom Patrol: Ah, my old nemesis Erik Larsen. Forever ago, I got into an internet argument with the Savage Dragon creator over our political differences in the comments section of a Newsarama article. He gave as good as he got, if I remember correctly, which surprised me from a “professional” (I assumed he would be more diplomatic). Funnily, right after this spat, Newsarama disabled the ability to comment on their articles. I choose to belief that I am responsible for that policy decision.

    14. Duchess’ identity is definitely a mystery for the audience, a mystery you ruined in this issue. I’m confused by your fawning praise of this entry, though. It’s fine, but only fine. The surprint specifically is a mess, in my opinion. The first two trades of Suicide Squad were pretty good, by the way. It is nothing exceptional, mind you, but it exceeded my admittedly low expectations. The only thing I had ever heard about the series was its pension for killing off minor villains, so I had envisioned it being much more dark and gritty. Anyway, I will read more as more trades come out.

    15. The surprint on Dumas, although minimal, is beautiful. I’ve mentioned that I need to read this series, right? In truth, many of the surprints in this issue appear phoned in. Hate to see this tradition being lost.

    16. Thrilled to see Forever people back in Who’s Who, although I’m less than enthused by the updates to the character (Beautiful Dreamer, in particular, is a travesty). It does appear that Ty Templeton chose to cast a young Owen Wilson in the role of Serifan.

    17. Garguax: opinion time. Is his head really small, or does it just look like that because the rest of him is so big?

    18. The Ghost: This entry provided me with an existential crisis. In flipping through the issue the first time, I quickly identified this as my favorite piece of art. As I look at it longer, though, I think it only pops for me because they messed up and the “surprint” (if you can call it that) is in full color. So, can I truly call myself a Who’s Who fan if I would prefer a piece that lacks the typical surprint? (Side note: Doom Patrol likewise breaks from the mold and has a full color background. Darn Larsen!). The Ghost logo is legitimately my favorite thing in this issue.

    19. G’nort: I’ve been co-opted by the forces of the Politically Correct. I love G’nort, but I was genuinely taken aback by a hero having a cigarette.

    20. Godiva: Shag, just because a character has boobs doesn’t mean she is hot. Godiva is not a physically attractive character. She is also not a compelling character. Let’s just say that you shouldn’t hold your breath waiting for the coverage of her on my nonexistent Teen Titans blog.

    21. I loathe this version of Green Arrow with the bile of a hundred million overactive gall bladders. Ollie Queen should always have the little hat with the feather in it. ‘Nuff said.

    22. I love this version of Green Flame as much as I loathe that Green Arrow. I don’t mind Fire, but early Beatriz is the best. I love the idea of a Justice Leaguer with such a minimal power. How is it, though, that no one else has mentioned that, although her powers & weapons says her fire breath extends to a half a foot, that the surprint shows it going to 8 inches? Was something mistranslated in the conversion to metric?

    23. I am not a fan of either the Green Lantern entries, although I do like the classic GL logo.

    24. Feedback: My community comment was not meant as a dig (I’d like to think I’m part of that community), but since it earned me a little bit of credit from you, I’ll take it. Oh, Im very familiar with the Brave and the Bold series. It is the best Batman animated show ever made.

    25. Where are the Xum entries? I checked the tumblr. I even did a Google search and, after spending a few hours looking at other awesome pieces of Xum’s work, still didn’t see the items you discussed. Hopefully you will direct us to that work soon.

    1. Michael Chiaroscuro says:

      I’ll second that question. And that’s so funny that I wasn’t the only one Googling for these images. At least we got to look at some great Xum art during both our searches. But we need to see Xum’s Satin Satan!

  19. Late to the party, but here’s a few comments:

    • Danny Chase: The cousin Oliver of Teen Titans, and he even kind of looks like him. Yes, he deserves all the ire he gets. He sucked. He was cool for 2 seconds as Phantasm, then they killed him and merged him with the souls of Azarath, Metreon, Mentos the Freshmaker or whatever. Bleh. I forgot that was Danny on the cover, and assumed it was Tim Hunter, too.

    • Green Flame: The charcoal bag makes sense, because I have struggled with that thing for years. I finally decided (much like Shag) it was a pillow made to look like a heater/mini-furnace. I know that doesn’t make any sense, but neither does this art. Giffen was starting to enter his indecipherable art period, and it’s showing here.

    • I liked Templeton’s covers. I’m not a huge fan of his upcoming JLI entry, although I think it may be where they got the bright idea to cast David Ogden Steirs as Martian Manhunter. J’onn has a beer gut in that image.

    • I do think you can tell Who’s Who was less of a priority at this point. Less big name artists, and a lot of newbies or “journeymen” on display, as well as “fonts” instead of logos.

    • Regarding the feedback, the Windfall figure was indeed from an Outsiders set which featured the team and the Masters of Disaster. No Batman. You had to buy the JLA set for him, which I did!

    I’m looking forward to the loose-leaf. I think it’s fun to go back and look at my binders and see how my young brain worked as far as organizing the characters. The artwork is indeed gorgeous.


  20. Siskoid says:

    While I’m glad to see Golden Age characters show up from time to time, they’re only really in U’88 because their stories were tweaked or changed in Secret Origins, not because they’re likely to appear any time soon. I mean, Midnight?! (spoilers)

    You make a big deal of the Ghost being subprint-free, but so is Axis Amerika. In the Ghost’s case at least, regardless of why the art was originally commissioned, it’s interesting that he’s a fading character and the background is solid, whereas most characters are solid with “transparent” surprint backgrounds.

    Hard to take Black Thorn seriously, and it’s not just the horrendous costume – it was the name of a character in my very first D&D campaign and a real jerk. Not much of a difference between the character and the player, come to think of it.

    Agree with Frank (it BURNS) that Dumas was only ever cool under Doug Rice’s pencils, and that’s almost true of Mark Shaw’s Manhunter costume as well.

    DISAGREE with Frank (ahhh Calgon take me away!) on Gangbuster though. Loved that era of Superman, liked José (elevated Trinity for me), and liked the twist with Superman in the role.

    Agree with Phylemon (it double-burns!!!) that the Duchess surprint is lacking. The lines are too thick to make the art at all legible. Still love the character though.

    Green Lantern Corps: There are only 4 left but let’s show a bunch of them anyway? Well at least the zombie GL got into the shot

    Junior groups inside a group? How about Legion Academy? Recently had their own strip in Adventure Comics.

  21. Oh yeah, junior groups. I think you can trace it back to Snapper Carr in a way, and definitely to Wendy and Marvin and then the Wonder Twins on the Super Friends. Heck, the first issues of the SF comic had the villains come up with a sidekick training program!


  22. Frank says:

    T) Garguax is one of the only Doom Patrol villains I can maybe name on a good day, and if we’re continuing the X-Men parallel, he’s no Blob. The Ghost was coming into the Post-Crisis Captain Atom series around the time my collecting/reading that title gets spotty. He could use a less generic name, but Peter Cannon and J’Onn J’Onzz already fight Faceless One(s). I don’t tend to notice or overly much care if there’s a surprint or full color.

    U) While I was interviewing J.M. DeMatteis about anything but G’nort, his love for the character “beyond all reason” still came up. I don’t particularly like or dislike Ed NORTon as the basis for a comic book character, but I also only see him as a utility for comedy involving other characters. To me, Justice League Antarctica and “Aliens Night Out” are about my enjoying the story’s stars reacting to circumstances created by this furry device/prop.

    V) Until I glanced at the credit, I had no idea Michael (Mike?) Collins drew Godiva, as it’s far better than and doesn’t remotely resemble a familiar artist I tend to consign to the Alex Saviuk spectrum of resigned tolerance. Given her limited exposure and overall look, I assume she’s a terrible character, but she looks hot (…and, uh, an empowered being with unlimited potential, or whatever I need to say to not totally objectify her, even though I doubt she’s worth the effort.)

    W) I didn’t know Rob Liefeld was doing layouts for any Who’s Who besides the Legion edition. Truth to tell, I’ve always liked Mike Grell as an artist, but I’ve never been much impressed with him as a writer, especially if you exclude Warlord. The visuals were the strong suit of The Longbow Hunters, and the series that followed suffered journeyman art by the likes of Ed Hannigan and Rick Hoberg. I can’t explain how such lethargic craft limped along for seven years, except I guess DC readers missed it the first time when it was done better by Frank Miller in Daredevil. Such a long wait until Connor Hawke validates this series’ existence.

    X) The strongest impression Green Flame ever made on me was in the last issue of JLI with Kevin Maguire as the regular artist where he did an impressive job of drawing her breasts as she spent the entire issue in bed sick with Gene Bomb. I’m not a breast man, but he gave them a grand sense of volume and texture. I want to like Bea because she’s a highly visible Latin heroine (eventually) with decent powers, and I liked the idea of her being a secret agent for Brazil. Unfortunately, I’ve always found her to be defined by sex appeal and her relationship to other characters like Ice & Guy Gardner. She’s also never been terribly effective in her adventures. I don’t recall Fire ever saving the day, and even in Checkmate, she was one of the lesser agents, barely an afterthought of a presence around the likes of The Wall and The Typical Greg Rucka Heroine: DC Edition whose name I forget (Sasha Bordeaux.)

    Y) Joe Staton isn’t a favorite, though it’s funny how I’m fine with him drawing stories for John Stewart or Guy Gardner, but he’s the artist of my most pronounced hatred of Hal Jordan. I liked the zombie Lantern, but seeing him in this entry just reminded me how Steve Englehart threw out clever concepts like a power ring that failed to allow its bearer to die in favor of trying to pull off DC’s 19th quasi-Marvel team book, this time made up of characters that all have the same powers.

    Z) I agree that Mark Waid pulled a Roy Thomas and turned Who’s Who into a catalogue of the changes made to characters in the Secret Origins title that he also edited. I feel the decision to focus on second entries for contemporaneous but ultimately inconsequential characters like Harlequin II instead of continuing the original volume’s mission of cataloging the whole of DC history rendered Who’s Who irrelevant and to be honest, increasingly undesirable. I’ve got hardbound copies of the Updates sitting on my bookshelf collecting dust while I schlep to the comic room to pull individual issues of the main series out of long boxes. When Rob joked “it’s all downhill from here,” he was late by about six episodes. Update ’88 is the nadir of Who’s Who, with the looseleaf and even Secret Files climbing out of its slump.

  23. Benton Grey says:

    This was another very enjoyable post, gents. I appreciated the mention of my little project, which is off to a swimming start. It’s your work in these podcasts that made me start thinking about this and started the itch in my mind to go back and discover all of these interesting characters y’all were talking about. Thanks for that!

  24. Martin Gray says:

    Shagg, Hal didn’t takes n the secret ID of Pol Manning in those future green Lantern adventures, he was kidnapped by the future people and made to think he was a native of the era after the time travel erased his memory.

    I’m with rob, original format all the way

    I heard Tom Artis died, Xum

    The honeymooners indeed

    Thanks for another tiptop show, a few comments.

    I’m with Rob, I prefer the original format, rather than having to faff about with clunky folders and having to put pages on order – there is no better ordering system than alphabetical.

    I like that cover, it’s frothy and fun.

    I’m tickled to hear that ‘mort’ in the comic book sense was ever ambiguous, it seems so obvious. But then again, there is SO much that goes over my head, it’s untrue.

    Love love LOVE Amazing Man’s costume, it’s like A-SS teammate Tarantula’s in being too stylish for the time, but gorgeous.

    I was delighted that the little jaundiced people were written out of Ray Palmer’s life, opening the way for the sheer delight that was Power of the Atom. I loved Ray grabbing his life back, having new powers and generally not wearing a ridiculous loincloth over his costume. We were back to a world in which Ray’s six inches was special, rather than him being a titchy person among fellow shrimps.

    Axis Amerika – what’s ‘mort’ in German?

    Blackhawk – a strapping man in leather with a peaked cap, what’s not to like?

    Blackhawks – I say, why no English stereotype?

    Black Thorn – she’s welcome to the glasses and hair of the post-Crisis Phantom Lady, I hate Dee the dog-killer.

    Blue Trinity – Lordy, they were boring.

    Brainiac – Milt Fine, note how ‘Milt’ is just two letters away from ‘Mort’? He was just rubbish, the classic Brainiac couldn’t come quickly enough.

    I never read a single issue of the original Checkmate, they didn’t pique my interest at all in Action Comics. I did think the revamp sounded interesting, but then I read it … Greg Rucka’s admirable attempt at realistic spy speak sucked the life out of the script.

    Chunk was great, dropping him, along with the magnificent Mary West, was one of the excellent Mark Waid’s few bad moves when he took over The Flash.

    The Crimson Avenger – it’s a shame that the only story anyone can cite is his death scene, and that was done better in the Doom Patrol.

    Duchess – sigh, Ostrander, Yale and O’Donnell were so very, very good, even making a dull Fourth World biddy interesting

    Danny Chase – the reason people hated him was that he was written as a conceited, over-entitled pipsqeak and drawn with a ginger bowl cut. He should’ve Inc dissected by the Controllers, not hanging around with a once-decent team of teenagers of pensionable age.

    Doctor Fate II – I enjoyed the DeMatteis/McManus series lots, though the romance was seriously icky.

    Doctor Mist – And talking of creepy, honestly, he’s more irredeemable than Shagg. It’d be interesting to see if anyone could do anything with him that doesn’t involve him and a team of not-as-good-as-the-Justice-League heroes. Primal Force got close, but the final issue retroactively ruined the series, by being unintelligible. I do like that Dr Mist was created by H Rider Haggard. I believe artist Tom Artis is no longer with us, sadly.

    Doctor Occult – the name business is hilarious. I wonder if there’s a Sneezy and Dopey Occult out there.

    Doom Patrol – I enjoyed this version of the team, bar Erik Larsen’s art, which just wasn’t for me.

    Dumas (pron. Dumbass) – I’ve never read a book with him in it, but that costume. It’s as bad as the horrific Manhunter outfit.

    Felix Faust – I will not accept, Shagg, that he’s not one of the biggest villains in the DC Universe, having starred on one of the most iconic covers ever. OK, it was a, let’s say, ‘homage’, but even the accompanying story was amazing.

    Firestorm was just wonderful and they threw it away; I’m not saying I didn’t like some of Ostrander’s stuff, but the Russian version was strangely proportioned and dull, while the elemental was, well, just not Firestorm.

    Forever People – I’ve only ever read them in the most recent series, which was great fun from DiDio and Giffen, otherwise, space hippies, bah.

    Gangbuster – I liked Jose Delgado as a supporting character, but not as a dull, fifth-rate superhero, with no powers and a self-limiting concept (Gangbuster; he busts gangs. Zzzzz)

    Garguax- comics needs more green fatties. That is all.

    Ghost – yes, the look is unfortunate, and he’s obviously no gentleman, but I enjoyed the few stories I saw him in.

    G’Nort- H’ate. Oh, I was sure he sometimes had an apostrophe too. Anyway, he was stupid looking and so crap even Itty wouldn’t have him as a sidekick. The Honeymooners reference is lost on me, I didn’t even know Ed Norton was acting back then.

    Godiva II, by virtue of keeping a Brit offstage, was obviously a tosser. Why call a character Godiva if she’s neither nude nor hair-themed?

    Green Arrow – I hated the Seattle years, he should’ve been in a decent superhero costume, driving the Arrowcar and stocking up on boxing gloves.

    Green Flame showed how a nothing character could have her blank slate filled with glowing goodness. To this day, she’s lighting up the DCU, in JL3001.

    Green Lantern II – ah Hal, if only you know what lay ahead. Mind, hasn’t he already started the reprehensible ‘romance’ with Arisia around this point, so he was already ruined as a character. Shagg, Hal didn’t take the identity of Pol Manning, he had it imposed on him when his memory vanished when he was pulled into the future.

    Green Lantern Corps – I loved this bunch, it pains me that there’s not been a consistently readable GL Corps book in years.

    Harlequin II. She was called Marcy. Nuff said.

  25. Stella says:

    I had my doubts, but Who’s Who ’88 is every bit as good as Who’s Who ’87. I was surprised to hear about the history of Green Flame/Green Fury, not aware of this beyond her just being Fire. I also always associate Fire with her BFF Ice, and I was wondering if you knew when they first crossed paths and how their friendship began. Will that be covered on a JLI podcast if one is ever created?

    Thank-you so much for the work you put into this show. I have learned a great deal and really enjoy it because of that. When I got back into comics (during Civil War and Infinite Crisis), the DC and Marvel encyclopedias, as well as Wikipedia, really helped me figure out who the characters are, and I appreciate character history. Keep it up! :)

  26. Wolfgang Hartz says:

    I wonder if amazing man and ‘mazing man ever teamed up, and if not, they should have!

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