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WHO’S WHO: The Definitive Podcast of the DC Universe, Volume XXIV

Who's Who: The Definitive Podcast of the DC UniverseThe Fire and Water Podcast Presents… WHO’S WHO: THE DEFINITIVE PODCAST OF THE DC UNIVERSE, Volume XXIV!

The twenty-fourth episode of our WHO’S WHO 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: Volume XXIV, discussing characters such as Tomhawk, Tommy Tomorrow, The Trickster, Two-Face, Ultra Boy, Ultra The Multi Alien, and more! We wrap up the show with your Who’s Who Listener Feedback! This episode sponsored in part by!

Be sure to check out our Tumblr site for several pages from this Who’s Who issue:!

Have a question or comment? Send us an e-mail at:

You can find the twenty-fourth episode of WHO’S WHO: THE DEFINITIVE PODCAST OF THE DC UNIVERSE 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 download the podcast by right-clicking here, choosing “Save Target/Link As”, and selecting a location on your computer to save the file (137 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 beautiful Eduardo Barreto cover for Volume XXIV! Click the image to enlarge.

Who's Who the Definitive Directory of the DC Universe #24 cover by Eduardo Barreto

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

First up is Typhoon drawn by Joe Brozowski and Steve Mitchell. While Typhoon’s first appearance was in The Flash #295 (March 1981), he was slated to appear in the unpublished Firestorm The Nuclear Man #6 (Dec 1978/Jan 1979)! Click to enlarge.

Typhoon drawn by Joe Brozowski and Steve Mitchell

Next is Tokamak, villain of one of the greatest Firestorm epics of all time (Fury of Firestorm #14-18, Annual #1 – July-Nov 1983)! Click to enlarge!

Tokamak drawn by Denys Cowan and Greg Brooks

Finally the shadowy organization known as the 2000 Committee drawn by Joe Brozowski and Art Nichols. This group hired many of the Nuclear Man’s foes, including Multiplex, Enforcer, Slipknot, Breathtaker, and Mindboggler. This shadowy group counted Clarissa Clemens, former wife of Professor Martin Stein, among it’s members. Click to enlarge.

2000 Committee drawn by Joe Brozowski and Art Nichols

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  1. Siskoid says:

    The cover: Thia getting on two covers by mistake? Or is it that Marv Wolfman used Who’s Who to spotlight Titans-related characters more than usual? Yes, Titans was a best-selling book (though on the wane by this point), but Thia? Come on now.

    Tim Trench: Who’s Tim Trench? This article will answer a number of your questions. I don’t think Tim was included as a Wonder Woman character, but rather, because he had his own feature (short-lived, but still, a back-up in Detective Comics where he is a pretty different character from the WW stuff, and the one pictured here), he deserved an entry. He was a solo star! And deserving of more adventures, in my opinion. The entry adopts the same style he himself narrated his adventures in, affecting a Sam Spade delivery. He was like a man born out of his time. That was his whole shtick.

    TNT: Who are TNT and Dan the Dyna-Mite? They’ve got masks, but actually DIDN’T for most of their Golden Age careers!

    Tommy Tomorrow: Who’s Tommy Tomorrow?

    Matt Savage Trail Boss: My next Who’s This victim. He appeared in the last few issues of Western Comics and apparently killed the series. I want to see how.

    Also on my list: Turtle Men, Ultraa, Ultra Man… maybe Ultra and Unimaginable.

    Tyr: The gun arm I favor is the one with the energy bubble which he sported around this time in the Legion of Super-Villains arc that began the Baxter series.

    Ultra Boy: Moose head, Shag? I’m pretty sure it’s a thunderbird.

    Oops, gotta go, I’ll finish the ‘cast in a bit!

  2. Anj says:

    So great to hear this episode in the Thanksgiving week. Reminds me to thank you guys for doing your podcasts.

    This is an odd issue with a bunch of little known cowboys and space characters. Insanity.

    Here are a couple of thoughts about some of the characters.

    1) TNT and Tsunami: Like Shag, I also like the idea of Young All-Stars more than the comic themselves. As said, the initial covers by Brian Murray, and the internal art by Michael Bair, was very good. And I actually like the idea of ‘Iron’ Munro, a place holder for the Earth-2 Superman. But overall the title fell short. I love the art of Tsunami.

    2) The Top – it is ridiculous that the Top doesn’t spin at super speed. In the comics, he spins away like a top and is a blur. Picture the best male dancer you know spinning on his feet. It ain’t that fast. The Flash would have laughed at this guy spinning in front of him. I am retconning that line in my mind.

    3) The Toyman – visually he always reminds me of actor Ed Wynn, which is how I rationalize his first name of Winslow. While he did kill Cat Grant’s kid in the Jurgens books, Geoff Johns then retconned that as being a Toyman robot out of control. The Toyman ‘loves’ kids. Great art by Marshall Rogers.

    4) Twoface – so fascinating to look at this now. The image of him looking through the prison bars with a bar splitting his face is reproduced in The Killing Joke in the opening scene of that book. Bolland’s stuff is just incredible. Two-face is my favorite Batman villain as he feels like ‘Bruce gone wrong’ a little.

    5) Tyr – I keep trying to read it like the beginning of Tyrant. But that makes it sound like ‘tire’ which is odd. He had a couple of moments in the Baxter Legion series (explaining his surprint and Ultra Boy’s). First, he is one of the LSV in the initial storyline. But more importantly, in the early book a group of Legionnaires destroy a sun-eater … a sun eater being made to engulf and destroy Tyr’s warworld of Tyrraz. Later, a Controller gets those same Legionnaires to destroy Tyrraz. (Ultra Boy is one of those Legionnaires.)

    6) Universo – I just never really liked him as a villain although he has come very close to ultimate victory any number of times!

    Thanks again! Have a good holiday!

  3. Anj says:

    Ack … forgot to hammer home something else …

    Tommy Tomorrow is one of the re-imagined space characters in the Chaykin/Garcia-Lopez Twilight series. He is abhorrent in the book, the main ‘villain’.

    That series is finally getting collected in a trade!

    And yes, Reactron and Hyathis rule! Deal with it!

  4. Joe X says:

    Ooh, new Who’s Who. A great way to waste a Sunday.

    Cover: Not too terrible. Ed Barreto was always a solid artist and good with a short deadline.
    Ultra Boy was probably the best choice for the lead spot, but a case could be made for either Uncle Sam or Two-Face. Actually Harvey should have been centered, so the spine fold could split his face.

    Art Young? He was a DC editor who was set to be the editor of Disney’s aborted Touchmark Comics, and when that collapsed, he brought those titles to Vertigo, things like Enigma and Sebastian O.

    Hey, if it’s Roy Thomas’s birthday, it’s also the anniversary of the first meeting of the Justice Society!

    Brian Murray drew those YAS covers, as well as the first few issues. He then went to Image to draw Supreme, where his deadline issues were welcomed.

    Looks like Fred Ray was the main Tomahawk artist for the early years.

    The Top logo looks like it came right out of a Golden Age strip.

    Most of the classic Flash villains reformed after Barry died, with various levels of success. Then Geoff Johns happened.

    The best Trigon is in Tiny Titans, but that’s true for almost every Titans character.

    There was a different set of Tweedles later wasn’t there? For that matter, Chuck Dixon created new versions of the Trigger Twins in the 90s.

    True, Paul Sloane could be differentiated from Dent in that the right side of Sloane’s face is scarred.

    As Legion of Super-Bloggers readers know, Tyr’s gun hand was always that goofy.

    Norm Breyfogle was drawing Whisper for Capital/First Comics at the time.

    Not Megaton Man, that was Don Simpson. Just Megaton, a company that gave us both Larsen, and Rob Liefeld. More at

    Post Crisis Ultraa was indeed getting it on with Maxima.

    Gary Concord appeared one of the reboot Legion annuals fearturing XS, where he played the Captain America role in a story slamming the financial shenanigans at Marvel.

    Love those Murphy Anderson Quality characters. If we can’t have Lou Fine or Will Eisner drawing it, then Murphy’s the choice.

    The Unimaginable reappeared in the Valor solo series.

    Hey, only 2 and a half hours this time! You guys are slacking off.

  5. wolfgang hartz says:

    Sorry Shag, but I will always like Syonide. I think she’s very sexy and that her whip is bad ass. I’m also going to defend Looker from the Outsiders and the Council from Supergirl because I just want to watch the world burn. (cue evil Heath Ledger-ish laughter)

  6. Yep, Fred Ray (famous for penciling that awesome GA Superman cover with the eagle on his arm) was the originator of Tomahawk and drew him for years. He even drew the character in that fantastic History of the DCU gatefold from the Graffiti hardcover edition of that book. Wonder why he didn’t draw him here?

    Harvey Kent WAS the Earth-Two Two-Face per issue #211 of Superman Family (tying back to that title mentioned in the show), where Mr. and Mrs. Superman attend the wedding of Batman and Catwoman. Lois stumbles on a plot to kill a guy named “Kent”, and she thinks it’s her husband, but no, it’s really the reformed Harvey Kent!

    Bolland’s Two-Face entry is fantastic, and honestly the first time Harvey’s face really frightened me. I haven’t picked up those Batman ’66 issues yet, but I read that the TV producers were planning on adapting the origin of Two-Face II, Paul Sloane mentioned in this issue. Rather than acid, it was going to be an exploding Hollywood lighting rig (or something like that) that disfigured him.

    Man, “Mr. Legion Hater” Rob is really schooling Shag on his Legion lore this episode. I think the Legion of Super-Bloggers constitution may call for an immediate dismissal. Or at least a day of scrubbing the men’s room with a tooth brush.

    Two Team Titans references in one episode? What are the odds?


  7. Jeff R. says:

    As the series goes on, the editors clearly got more and more desperate to fill the pages, which makes finding an Egregious Omission of the Month harder. So no runners-up this time, (I considered Ultivac, but he did get covered in the Forgotten Villains entry, so nope.) And the winner is the Tornado Tyrant, who, as a major villain of classic Justice Leaguer should have gotten the spot. [Incidentally, when people draw the line between ‘classic’ and otherwise Justice League, as we know, the main controversy is pre-Firestorm vs post-Firestorm, but the pre-viewpoint is deeply incoherent, relying on wanting Zatanna on the list so strongly as to be willing to include Reddy, but once you’re calling Red Tornado a classic League one has no grounds whatsover to exclude Firestorm.]

    DC had two major missed opportunities at the turn of the century. The first was the lack of a serious Armageddon 2001 follow-up when it actually was 2001, but the one I missed more was the lack of any kind of 2000 Committee story in 1999 or 2000. I imagine that they’re still out there, waiting on a definitive report from the Renaming and Rescheduling Subcommittee…(Actually, I vaguely recall them showing up briefly as the 2020 Committee, which was probably chosen more for the double meaning with clear vision than any realistic planning horizon.)

    Ultra Boy Trivia: according to the Legion constitution, each member has to have at least one power that no other member [excluding Superboy] already has. The Legion already had Mon-El when Ultra Boy was added, who also had all of the powers of Superboy. So how did Ultra Boy get in? Well, instead of X-ray vision, he has penetra-vision, which can see through anything except copper. So the super-power that actually qualifies Jo Nah to be in the Legion is the ability to see through lead. (Which came in handy surprisingly often, mostly for telling which hidden lead boxes or pipes or spaces under lead floors actually contained Kryptonite…the future contained what now seems like an astonishing amount of still-in-use architectural lead.)

    Mr. Element and Dr. Alchemy were the same person, though. One wound up being revealed as a psychic projection golem thing of the other.

  8. Anthony Durso/The Toyroom says:

    Cover: When this series started out the Perez covers seemed to signal that this
    was a very important series to DC…a companion piece to Crisis. When Perez left,
    it seemed that eventually the covers became an afterthought and were thrown at
    whoever had an opening on their schedule that month. No consistency (with
    the exception of the admirable but inevitably sub-par effort by Paris Cullins).

    Tim Trench: A digital platform version of Detective Comics would serve these
    old obscure P.I. and spy characters well IMO.

    Titano: There was a great bit in an old Silver Age Superman story where
    Superman was flying back to the past in order to get an accurate measurement
    of Titano’s height for a story Clark kent is doing. While there he is struck by
    Kryptonite rays from his Titano’s eyes and wound up landing in Al Capone’s era
    while he recuperated. (Superman #142)

    Titans of Myth: Sort of odd that Thia got her own listing where her
    husband Hyperion did not. And he was the first original Titan that the
    NTT encountered.

    TNT and Dan the Dyna-Mite: Of course Dan the Dyna-Mite played a pivotal
    role in “The Golden Age” when his body was taken over by the brain of
    Adolf Hitler.

    Tomahawk and Dan Hunter: I still have issues with Tomahawk due to the
    bait-and-switch “Superman Salutes the Bicentennial” (Limited Collectors’ Edition #47)

    Tomahawk’s Rangers: The Revolutionary War version of the Blackhawks?

    Tommy Tomorrow: How is it that Geoff Johns or Roy Thomas never tried to connect
    Tommy Tomorrow with T.O. Morrow? Seems like it’d be right up their alley…

    * I think a companion podcast about “The History of the DC Universe” is
    in order before you guys tackle the Who’s Who Updates.

    The Top: Here’s another Egregious Omission kind of related to the Top…
    in one of the Golden Glider’s early story arcs (Flash #261-264) she creates a villain,
    The Ringmaster, to help her break up Barry and Iris Allen, to avenge her broken
    heart. The Ringmaster should have got a listing IMO.

    Toyman: I agree…considering the fact that he appeared on “Challenge of the Superfriends”
    I think there should have been a Toyman II entry featuring Jack Nimball.

    Trail Boss, Matt Savage: The TV show “Rawhide” ran from 1959-1965 and featuring
    stories about a trail boss (Gil Favor) and his underlings (including Rowdy Yates played
    by Clint Eastwood) driving cattle from Texas to Missouri. So apparently there was some
    story potential there after all.

    Trigon: I always pronounced it as Trig-On…like in trigonometry.

    Tweedledum and Tweedledee: Background characters who get an ass-whooping by
    The Batman Family whenever there’s a massive jailbreak from Arkham Asylum and
    Blackgate Prison

    Two-Face: As a kid, Two-Face was one of those villains whose modern appearances
    were scarce but I was always intrigued by the various reprints that featured the
    character. The #2 Batman villain when done right…

    Tyr: Always reminded me of He-Man’s old foe Trap-Jaw…

    Tyroc: Tyroc’s origin is kinda reminiscent of Vathlo Island, where the Black Kryptonians lived…

    Ultraa: Ultraa was in the first issue of “Justice League of America” (#158) that I ever purchased.

    Ultra the Multi-Alien: LOVE, LOVE, LOVE the absurdity of this character!
    Why he isn’t headlining a digital version of “Mystery In Space” I’ll never know!
    Eventually I’ll figure out how to make a custom Mego of this guy.

  9. Kyle Benning says:

    Yay Who’s Who! What a way to celebrate my Birthday, by listening to a new episode of my favorite podcast!

    This issue is a perfect example of why this Who’s Who series is so great. Not a whole lot of heavy hitting A-Listers in this issue, but whole lot of characters that have at least at some point and capacity been a crucial member of the DCU. Whether that was in a string of out there, sci-fi explorer of space during the Silver Age, a time traveller, or a colonial frontiersman that occasionally impacted or played a fiction part in an otherwise very real moment of American history. This issue may not have any superstars that you can go to comic shop and pull a new issue off the stands starring them, but it has a lot of characters who at some time and in some fashion did matter to what DC was publishing. Western comics were a huge part of the entire comic industry in the post WWII, pre-Showcase #4 era of comics (what some call the Atomic Age), and continued to have a regular and meaningful presence in the DCU offering into the 1980’s, with at least bouts of reprisal in the post-Crisis DC era. So it was great to see a number of forgotten Western characters make it into this issue; as a big fan of western movies and comics dating back to my early childhood, I always found these characters and entries interesting, even if the art and poses weren’t particularly stellar or eye-catching.

    The funny thing about reviewing this series 30 years later, there are a lot of characters that were hot at the time, and reading those stories within a 5-10 year span that they came out, gives us that context that Trigon would’ve been a “hot” character at the time (and no I don’t just mean because he inhabits in a firey nether dimension) but would readers who had been tracking the DCU say since Infinite Crisis even know who he is or think he is important? What about Ultra-Humanite? Same with Ultra Boy (who is probably my 3rd favorite Legionnaire after Superboy & Mon-El), the Legion unfortunately doesn’t even have their own title at the moment, and thankfully have just recently shown up again in JL United (to read a recap on their recent appearance in the annual, check out Legion of Super-Bloggers and a summary/review written by your’s truly), so despite Ultra Boy being a mainstay and hot character in the 1980’s, is he still A-List or even B-List status now? One of the things I love most about comics is the ‘time capsule” element of preserving the pop culture and comics culture of the time, and a series like OHOTMU or Who’s Who emphasis that even more when it comes to who’s hot and who’s not with comics. You have this generation lag, where the creators of the series who are inventing new characters for the (primarily) younger reading audience, and they are introducing these epic storylines with new characters, but they still have the stories and characters they grew up with in their minds as “top tier characters.” By that I mean now currently, you two gentleman and most of us listeners would be around the same age as many of the creators in comics right now who would be in charge of putting together a new Who’s Who volume. And so I wonder if a new generation of readers picked up a new volume released in 2014, would they have the same reaction to some of the characters like Trigon that we have for some of the lesser known characters in our minds from the 60’s, 50’s, and 40’s? Many of the creators that worked on Who’s Who in the 80’s would have been late 20’s to mid 40’s, and sticking in characters that their generation grew up reading that may have had Trigon-like status at one point but fallen by the wayside ever since. While this issue definitely seems to have the filler vibe, I wonder how many of these characters that only had a handful of appearances really hit home and reasonated with the Who’s Who staff back when they were young, and really stuck with them ever since, resulting in their inclusion in the series, despite seeming obscure to younger readers when Who’s Who was hitting the stands in the mid 80’s.

  10. Phylemon says:

    You have the worst timing! I’m currently in the middle of the Carribean Ocean on a cruise that cost entirely too much, and now is costing even more to get the Internet access to listen to this podcast and write this comment. So, if I’m going to post the most expensive comment in the history of “Who’s Who: The Definitive Podcast of the DC Universe” I want to start it out right: JERICHO ROCKS!

    Alright, with that out of the way, I have to confess that I don’t have much to say. With my comics a few time zones away, I will hold off on the majority of my comments. What I will say is that Shag is absolutely right about Trigon! Sorry, what I mean to say is that Shag is absolutely right about getting an angry message from me about his Trigon comments. The whole point is that, yes, in a physical battle, Trigon would have trounced the Titans (even with Jericho as part of the team), but Trigon was more interested in a psychological battle. The Titans innate goodness allowed them to overcome Trigon’s machinations in a classic “Wolfman / Perez” style story about the power of righteousness. His appearance as the big bad in the first arc of The Baxter version of Titans is some of the most beautiful work I’ve seen in comics and my favorite story aside from Ambush Bug #3.

    Alright, until next week when I am fully armed with my copy of this issue.

  11. Shag says:

    You guys are the best! Reading your comments is the highlight of my day! And Phylemon… LOL!!! That internet time probably cost you more than buying a Near Mint 9.8 CGC Graded copy of Jericho’s first appearance! Bwah-hah-ha!!!

  12. rob! says:


    We post new episodes every Monday, have done so for about 2 years. You should have scheduled your cruise around our release schedule to avoid this problem.

  13. Frank says:

    1) I applaud Shag’s courage in taking the difficult, unpopular stance by recommending The Dark Knight Returns, especially on the heels of his joining Rob for a hard-hitting Star Wars episode. Looking forward to your controversial explorations of The Beatles, cheeseburgers, and a literal Fire and Water Podcast discussing the elemental forces’ positive impact on earthen life. I hope you guys get sponsored by Deep Discount DVD, where listeners can save up to 40% on M*A*S*H Season One and Doctor Who: The Complete Paul McGann Collection with offer code “Ground Fruit.” Allow me to offer a recommendation to Shag: 2013, the year everyone else finished Breaking Bad while consoling themselves that Game of Thrones had years to go in its run.

    2) I used to hate Ed Barreto’s art style, especially as a stiff follow-up on New Teen Titans. I later realized he was beautiful on period pieces, especially works evoking a mid-century aesthetic like Martian Manhunter: American Secrets and Mickey Spillane’s Mike Danger. This cover is busy and technically competent enough to appear to be a Perez at a quick glance. The only part of it I like is the rendering of Tomahawk.

    A) Tim Trench is definitely a Zook-denier (32 co-starring appearances in the Silver Age versus four supporting appearances in Bronze Age issues of Diana Prince.) I don’t actually think Russell compliments the majestic Sandy Plunkett all that well, but it doesn’t matter, because the finished piece is so exceptional it makes up for the anorexic subject matter.

    B) Titano is another fun Weisinger era Superman premise that’s both fun and would look fairly awesome if translated to live action, but was deemed too “silly” and used as a throwaway gag in occasional modern era one-offs. Superman movies could only benefit from King Kong with Kryptonite Vision. The John Byrne art looks like a convention sketch hacked out with a Sharpee.

    C) José Luis García-López (Sometimes He’s Merely Serviceable!) Understandable, as the Titans of Myth are an excellent source of raw bulk melatonin.

    D) TNT and Dan the Dyna-mite look like the bottles that melatonin would be sold in. They are seriously potent propaganda figures against remembering DC Comics’ long history and continuity.
    “I can’t stand the New 52! Look what they did to–”
    “Dan the Dyna-mite.”
    “Okay, I’ll just see how Futures End plays out every week for a year and go from there.”

    E) I like everything about Trevor Von Eeden’s art on the Tobias Whale entry except a) it features the Black Lightning villain Tobias Whale; b) who I assume is 3’7″ and could battle Puck in the next DC vs. Marvel and; c) his skull makes me wonder is he’s supposed to be a sperm whale. In Tobias’ defense, Kingpin wasn’t Kingpin when he was created.

    F) I agree with Rob about the Tokamak logo being a snazzy design… for a 1970s diet cola. Seeing as he wears an aluminum can and is much more svelt than usual, Tokamak could be its mascot, though he’ll need some remedial emoting lessons from Punchy and the Frito Bandito.

    G) Was Dan Hunter still around for Son of Tomahawk, and if so was he dispossessed and angry like Jason Todd or did he want to tongue kiss his much younger adoptive pseudo-sibling like Earth-2 Dick Grayson? I inherited a coon skin cap from my uncle, and wore it every now and again, but beyond the feral fake ponytail aspect I could never see the appeal of boring old Daniel Boone. I hear he was a big man, and he didn’t get scared, and he could see good, and he was fashion challenged in the extreme. Whoop. Never was much for Spiegle, either.

    H) According to Jones & Jacobs, Tommy Tomorrow was created by Jack Schiff and Mort Weisinger in 1947 “intended for actual scientific speculation, but the ’50s saw it transform into a backup strip about an interstellar police force… with uninspired Jack Miller scripts and muddy Jim Mooney art.” In the same paragraph, many of these folks were referenced in relation to a strip starring the Martian Manhunter and Zook, unlike Who’s Who. Peter Cannon probably rocked masculine booty shorts better than any other hero, but props to Tommy for making schoolboy short pants look ‘tuff. I very much like the atypical Jim Mooney art on the entry. Didn’t they make a horror of this dude in Twilight?

    I) T.O. Morrow invented Red Tornado, so he’s easily one of the worst menaces to plague the Justice League. The entry really sells the “uninteresting portly scientist with zero winks on eHarmony.” Can someone please skip buying Volume XXIV brand new off the stand just this one time and instead set the Wayback Machine to no later than the Spring of 1968 in order to stab T.O. Morrow in the brain through his ocular cavity with one of those pens in his pocket protector?

  14. Xum Yukinori says:

    A few random thoughts as I listen to this brilliant podcast:

    Tomahawk’s Rangers—the logo lettering here (also used for Multi-Man) looks just like that used to denote the story titles in the Sliver Age DC books in the 1950s and 1960s. In fact, this “logo” is taken straight from the cover caption of Tomahawk #83.

    Speaking of logos taken from covers. The Top’s logo is from the… *ahem* top of the cover of The Flash #303 – which was your first Flash Top story, Shag.

    Backtracking to Tommy Tomorrow. The changed history of Kamandi being Tommy Tomorrow was first revealed in Crisis #12, and not The History of the DC Universe book.

    T.O. Morrow’s “death” by apparent disintegration at the end of The Flash #143 was revealed to actually be a planned escape via “Earth hopping” to Earth 2 in Justice League #64. In his words, he “vibrated [himself] into that other Earth [he] learned about by peering into the future!” (O-o-okay.) I suspect that since this Who’s Who issue was published after Crisis #12, the “Earth hopping” aspect of his history was removed since the JSA and JLA are now on the same Earth.

    Toyman’s post-it note says: “This’ll drive Big S Nuts”. Michael Bailey has the proof:

    Back to the show…

  15. Xum Yukinori says:

    The listing of the other Two-Faces’ first appearances in the Two-Face entry made me realize that the Jack Nimball (odds are his middle initial was “B”) Toyman’s was not. For those who are wondering, he first appeared in Action Comics #432.

  16. Mark Sweeney says:

    Ultra Boy:

    Fell in love with his costume before the character. His insignia was eventually revealed to be the emblem for Jo’s Rimborian gang, the Emerald Dragons. He even sported a tattoo of the dragon, 5YL and adopted a new Emerald Dragon costumed identity at the tail end of that run. Confession – I’m in the vast minority of Legion fans, here, but I love that Emerald Dragon costume on Jo.


    An Ultraa DID appear in Justice League Quarterly – this version was from Maxima’s planet, I think, and was aggressively pursuing her. Got to say, NO version of this character had ever done anything for me.

    Nice tidbit re: Dobie Gillis/Scooby Doo. You really do learn something new every day.

  17. Martin Gray says:

    Great podcast boys, but this issue was, of course, ruined for me by the addition of the connective hyphen in the Toyman logo.

    I would imagine Romeo Tanghal drew the TNT and Dan the Dyna-Mite entry because he inked the Nightwing and Flamebird strip in Superman Family.

    Tommy Tomorrow once guested in Supergirl story in Action Comics, back when crossovers wee most exceeding rare. I wonder if that was Jim Mooney’ idea.

    Rob reckoned the top logo had to be the only one in Who’s Who with motion lines… er Flash?

    What is so surprising, Shag, about a bit of Two-Face business in the terribly overrated Dark Knight Returns dating back to an older story? It wasn’t like that Miller didn’t borrow from the previous stories in other instances.

    ‘Martin Gray’ is in England? How very dare you! But I AM a chimney sweep.

    I wouldn’t hard on Shag for not knowing all the the Legion characters, despite being so proud about his status a member of the Legion of Super-Bloggers – has he heard of those ultra-obscure guys Saturn Girl, Lightning Lad and Cosmic Boy?

    It’s only right that compliments are still coming on for Xum’s brilliant Earth One Superman entry. Me, I forgot to commend one and all on Triumph’s double page spread.

    This is the first I’d heard of the contents of Superman Salutes the Bicentennial, thanks Anthony – what the heck was going on there? DC must have had something else planned originally, surely. I mean Tomahawk? We’re there reports of thousands of disappointed readers storming the shops to return my copies?

    And well done, too, Anthony – linking Trigon with trigonometry brings forth a whole new level of evil. Oh yeah.

    Belated happy birthday Kyle. And you raise an interesting point – I wonder who’d get the cover spots if this project were being done today.

    Am I the only one who can never keep Professors Ivo (which surely should be pronounced the Dutch way?) and TO Morrow straight?

  18. Siskoid says:

    You’re not the only one Martin. But it’s dead easy:
    Ivo is awesome, and created Amazo, who is awesome.
    TO Morrow is lame, and created Red Tornado who is more than lame.

  19. Martin Gray says:

    Oh, clever stuff, nice one Siskoid!

  20. Frank says:

    3) Siskoid’s article teaches us that TNTnDan go from retro-neuterboys to disturbing Catholic imagery-invokers without the domino masks. They’re like male nuns, but slightly less violent.

    J) The Top’s logo looks like something that would appear over Woodstock’s head after the bird fell out of a tree. Contender for worst costume ever, as he looks like he was created for a dreidel safety instruction video (you could put your eye out with the wrong flick of the wrist, boychik!) The art is bad even by Who’s Carmine “standards,” and this was the one Flash rogue Geoff Johns couldn’t redeem with all of his might.

    K) I tend to be critical of the drive toward constant revision of established characters by talent who did not create said characters and do not understand the concept behind said creation, but Toy-Man is an exception to that rule. Schott’s a schmuck who cooler heads have repeatedly replaced with superior variations on the premise, only for canon-thumping dummies to revive the toothless original again and again. Toyman Mk.1 makes Superman look like a bad character through association with such a lame-o. Toyman is arguably one of the Man of Steel’s upper echelon foes, which demonstrates the desperate need to develop and sustain new foes who are at least remotely threatening. Grade schoolers look at Scott and figure to take him.

    L) James Robinson linking fourteen forgettable period characters through the surname “Savage” only to build up to a supporting character named O’Dare for the relatively minor Starman legacy is the Roy Thomasest of unfortunate retcontinuity implants. The picture is up to Who’s Carmine standards.

    M) I’m with Shag in forever seeing the Trickster as a Blue Devil frienemy over a Flash foe, likely because he was more effective and impactful as the former than the latter. Cullins and Martin made a lovely pair as well.

    N) As depicted, the Trigger Twins totally look like country themed male strips and/or lovers who look similar enough to pass themselves off as brothers in the old homophobic west. Giordano makes Who’s Carmine slightly more palatable, but the fact that this is the third Infantino entry tells the tale of this issue containing the dregs of filler material for an unwise extension of the series.

    O) Having been introduced to Trigon through the Baxter series, I was at the perfect entry point and age to develop a lasting appreciation for the villain in spite of his relative lack of accomplishment. He was the focal point of an extended “Galactus Trilogy” rewrite with strong supernatural/psychological overtones (always preferable to science fantasy) featuring the Titans when they mattered to me. Besides figuring into some of the best art Perez ever produced, I also dug the overt sexuality of Trigon, an uncommon feature in any male comic book chatacter. He’s literally horny, wears white thigh high boots, and his devilish parts are covered only by a loincloth despite his enjoyment of standing over cities at sixty feet tall in high winds. His defining moment is impregnating a woman with his demon seed. He’s Mephisto as Rosemary’s Babydaddy, and he’s probably the most terrible lay, if his name has any bearing on his primary occupation. Most importantly, he was destroyed by the power of purest, most platonic born-again-virgin friendship love, the super-heroic equivalent of the Care Bear Stare. That’s so awful it spins around the chastity ring until it becomes awesome again. Worth noting: Superman, Batman, Wonder Woman, and Justice League Detroit were petrified by him.

    P) Tsunami is a poster child for well-intentioned inclusion failing to bridge the gaping chasam to actual inspiration. Like too many characters created since the Bronze Age, her name is a non-specific noun and she has the basic look and power set of every aquatic-themed hero ever. Nothing makes me resent Ian Karkull more than his “everybody stays young indefinitely” continuity patch extending all the way to Neptune Perkins and Tsunami so they could sire a disposable ’90s legacy act. I’m also in the Excited About Young All-Stars Until I Have To Read It Club.

    Q) I have to wonder if Peter Laird wasn’t tapped to draw Turtle Man because as second bill on TMNT the editors assumed he was the main artist on that book. Ridiculous as Turtle is, in an issue featuring The Top, he looks viable by comparison.

    R) Tweedledee & Tweedledum mark the point of maximum exploitation of character concepts from Lewis Carroll as super-villains. You know you have to stop when you smack into the Tweedlebarrior. These are exactly the sort of characters you have the Penguin murder to give his reputation of slight lift. There is no Batman story that can be told where the Tweedles are essential. They are in the public domain. They are not a valuable trademark. Make them be dead, please, for the love of god almighty. And have Bill Sienkiewicz draw it.

    S) I greatly disliked Two-Face until B:TAS showed me the light and I realized he’s probably the greatest Batman villain, and I saw The Dark Knight for Harvey Dent, not that stupid clown (who as written should have been The Riddler anyway.) if only Brian Bolland had drawn a masterpiece story with this character instead of that joker.

  21. Xum Yukinori says:

    I also take some issue with the Top not being able to spin at “superhuman speed.” While it is unclear exactly how he developed his spinning power, in The Flash v1 #243, the Top explained that he gained his mind-over-matter powers because the repeated centrifugal force of his spinning was pushing “millions of dormant brain cells to the outer levels of [his] cerebrum, where they became active.” (Bates-comic-book science.) If this was accomplished by spinning at non-super human speed, the DCU would be running rampant with telekinetic figure skaters…

  22. Darrin and Ruth says:

    A great episode as always. You two make the most obscure characters interesting. If I remember correctly, not only was a Two-Face script written for the Batman TV series, but a little known actor named Clint Eastwood had been cast to play him. However, before production started, ABC pulled the script saying that the Two-Face character was not appropriate for a family show.

  23. Darrin and Ruth says:

    As fans of both Scooby-Doo and Dobie Gillis, it was fun to hear Shagg educate Rob about this very significant piece of television history.

  24. Frank says:

    4) I have to wonder if “Todd Smutz” is a real person, or a combination of numerous critical letter hacks that the book’s editors could address without attacking any one reader. Plus his name sounds like “smut” and “schmutz.” Just as the mainstream uniformity of OHOTMU defines it, Who’s Who’s willingness to reach beyond the contemporary and common makes it singular.

    5) “It Ain’t Me Babe” is one of my favorite Bob Dylan songs, which was covered by Johnny Cash, and Dylan helped inspire one of my favorite Cash songs, “Understand Your Man'” while the similar subject matter makes me wonder if “Man” helped lead to “Babe.”

    aops) Forgot to mention that Sandy Plunkett did many of the best OHOTMU entries and a lot of gorgeous Marvel covers because he was far too slow to produce sequential stories on any kind of schedule. In defense of Roy Thomas’ under-use of Aquaman, he tended to shy away from the Earth-1 paralleled heroes outside of Infinity Incorporated, and even there tended to only use the heroes with progeny. It wasn’t his fault that Aquaman was left out of the JSA because there is no Earth-2 Aquaman. I want to say my first Two-Face story was about one of the multiple versions (Moench and Mandrake?) Rob’s recollection reminded me of the dissonance I experienced when Skeletor appeared to die by the sword to his breast during his debut story in DC Comics Presents only to brush it off in the subsequent MotU mini-series. That story was drawn by Curt Swan, who also finished out the previously-Michael Nasser drawn Martian Manhunter serial of the 1970s, so I can see where Shag’s Trigon hate comes from.

    T) So the Firestorm-related entries are back-to-back and dull-to-duller. Shadow agencies are a dime a dozen, and the 2000 Committee is simply Firestorm’s. Meanwhile, the Typhoon entry is downright ugly, and I don’t see much to the character beyond his sad sack origin.

    U) I’m not sure why I never bought a Tyr action figure, but it’s probably because he was an amputee with a prosthetic, and that was a fate shared by about 40% of my action figures through normal play. I think my toy collection just had a gross overrepresentation of handicapped combatants without buying them that way. The Mohawk/handlebar mustache makes an excellent combo, though. I cannot recall if I’ve ever encountered the character in actual comic books. Danny Trejo was the Latino Al Leong until Machete, so I can cut Shag a little slack.

    V) That Tyroc entry is just like BAM! He wouldn’t be out of place in the Eros Coley Running Wild series. Dude is accentuated in ways usually reserved for female exploitation. Props to Norm Breyfogle for this daring art. I don’t want to discuss this character. At all.

    W) Ultraa is exactly the type of character that gets your nerd senses tingling with his extraordinary power levels and unique place in Multiple Earthery, but in execution is such a tool that it kills your interest. He’s the only character so awful that getting drafted into Maxima’s backstory was an upgrade (the issue of JLQ that became “hot” due to an early Joseph Michael Linsner cover.) Mike Machlan does not “get” Erik Larsen, and inked him terribly as a result. Shag was very wrong about the Savage Dragon, a character Larsen had been drawing since childhood in his own personal mini-comics and had already made two small press appearances by the time this issue came out.

    X) I’ve never felt strongly enough about Ultra Boy to dislike him, but I have difficulty seeing why anyone would like him, either. He’s Superboy stuck using one power at a time, simultaneously too powerful and not powerful enough. Post-Zero Hour, he was an actual reformed gang member, but it didn’t make him any more interesting. The main book I associate Ron Frenz with is Thor/Thunderstriike, and I didn’t like him at the time, but I came to appreciate his work. He also replaced Dan Jurgens as artist on Superman, drawing the Red/Blue period.

    Y) Ultra-Humanite is a cool concept that outside of maybe The Golden Age I haven’t seen used all the well, and I haven’t detected much of a personality in the comics. Wasn’t he one of the first true super-villains, and was he the guy the Superman newspaper strip artist confused with Lex Luthor, prompting the shift from ginger to cueball? John Statema was one of my favorite inkers in the ’90s, and I think the only Ultraverse comic I still own was an issue of Mantra he drew very well.

    Z) I’m reasonably confident that I’ve read one Gary Concord story from the ’40s, but can’t elaborate beyond that. Maybe it was just a lookalike, unlikely as that seems? Ultra is an idea that seems ginchy, but I lack the imagination to see where you could go with stories of a Multi-Alien. Liking the stark ’60s retro-art on the entry. Neapolitan ejaculate.

  25. Frank says:

    $) Uncle Sam is like the Spectre of Earth-X; this funny dressed guy who can be a run of the mill super or cosmic depending on the story. I could never fully accept him in comics, as he’s like having Santa Claus on your super team. Plus, he wears striped leggings with spats. As I recall, the U.S. Prestige mini-series was explicitly out of continuity and not officially related to the Quality Uncle Sam as far back as the solicitation materials.

    ) Back when I was first doing the Idol-Head blog, I read library copies of multiple Showcase Presents and did write-ups for all the early JLA stories, only to have the drive that stored my copy crash. The Unimaginable was in there. That is my sole connection to the concept.

    û) The ex-GL bit is played out, but I otherwise dig Universo, mostly because I liked a story arc of his from the Baxter format series where he enslaved and imprisoned the Legion. He’s your classic Ming-y vaguely exotic tyrant, and he taught Dr. Mindbender how to dress. His logo could use more pizzazz, but the art here is swell.

    6) DC is going to take at least half as much money during Convergence as I’ve spent on the whole of the New 52. I’m irritated by that, but I still care enough about prior incarnations of DC properties to support this “love letter.”

    7) My period of familiarity with the Legion began with the Baxter series and ended with the start of DnA, though there are other areas before and since I’ve delved into. Especially in the reboot years, the Fatal Five were major players, which means my perception of Tharok’s prominence has been colored by this reading.

    8) At some point I’d like to talk at greater length about dropping a whale on my co-host, but between still feeling guilty about screwing up my recording session with Rob and the planned subject matter being pushed into next year, I expect that discussion will have to wait until 2015…

  26. Siskoid says:

    Volume 24, the issue that keeps on giving…

    Who’s Ultraa?

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