Saturday, April 30, 2005

Bruce Wayne, Botanist

"Must...redirect snarking...away from...Rumsfield and Spiderman!"

Sorry; talking out loud again. Comic books will do that to you.

I have long been waiting for DC to fix some of its high profile villians. Like Per Degaton on his disc-thingie, I watched, pained, from a distance, as the Riddler became a joke, the Penguin a punching bag, Catman a wife-beating tubbo (no, Brad, I haven't forgiven you for that, yet!), Killer Croc a Spiderman-animal-of-the-week villain, Gorilla Grodd an anthropophagic moron, and Poison Ivy a Floronic Man with a D cup.

But things have been looking up for DC villainhood! A new Catman with shoulders to die for! A metrosexualized Riddler! And now Poison Ivy rehumanized...perhaps.

The "animated" Batman comic did it first and brilliantly so (of course). It portrayed Poison Ivy's becoming less and less human, finally to wither and die like a deracinated flower. But then it was revealed that the "Poison Ivy" we'd been following for some years in that comic was merely a plant-creature left by the real (perfectly human) Pamela Isley, who was off doing research (with Alec Holland). Sheer genius.

But sheer genius is distinctly lacking in the mainstream DCU's treatment of Ivy's rehumanization. In the current Legends of the Dark Knight storyline, they credit Jason Woodrue with her "herbification", yet claim that he's dead. If he's dead, who is the Floronic Man? They muddled the story further by involving as her romantic interest the absurd Hush, who remains a meaningless and uninteresting cipher, despite the fanboy attention he receives (He's the Golden Calf of villains). Oh, and the best part! Without Woodrue on hand, Poison Ivy goes to the obvious botany expert to help her regain her humanity...

BRUCE WAYNE!?!?!?!?!?

Rrrriiiiight. Bruce Wayne, billionaire playboy and philanthropist. Yes, I'll seek HIS help in detoxifying my body of its plant-like aspects. Once that's done, I'll ask Lex Luthor to teach me concert piano, Simon Stagg to instruct me in ballroom dance, and Steve Dayton to do my hair.

I mean, what the FO?


Jer said...

What do you mean by Hush being the "Golden Calf" of villains? Do you mean he's some kind of false idol that the fans worship or something?

I wish Hush was actually interesting. I had friends who raved about how great the arc was, but when I read it in the trade collection I was disappointed. He doesn't seem like that great of a villain to me.

Scipio said...

Yes, like the Golden Calf, he is worshipped as an empty idol. No personality, no sensible motivation, no comprehensible goals, no real accomplishment. He's an empty icon of villainous, the blank eye of a whirlwind of real villains whipped about him in a frenzied but ultimately nugatory storyline.

Yeah... you could say I don't like him either!