Wednesday, July 15, 2009

Vol. 2 of Martian Madness

Okay, as previously mentioned, the Martian Manhunter went from weird to weirder when he left Detective Comics for House of Mystery.

Now, I know you all think I'm INSANE ("Mad! So, my colleagues think me mad, eh...?!") for harping on the insidious evil of SURREALISM lurking with comic books, yet surrealism is exactly the new foe that J'onn was pitted against.

There was a certain bizarre logic to it. No one ever had any idea what to do with this ridiculous Martian character they'd cobbled together out of breakfast martinis, deadlines, and old pulp sci fi mags. For that matter, no one ever has. Might as well have him fight equally bizarre and ridiculous 'foes', in a symbolic struggle of classic art versus surrealism, or as a metaphor for humanity's never-ending efforts to impose meaning on a chaotic world. Who better to thrust in unknown and nonsensical territory?

J'onn was no longer fighting crooks in ties or even crooks in stupid costumes.

Even for comic books, that's a stand-out sentence.

Now he fought things like...

evil sentient orchestras.

Pity J'onn's career in Zydeco never took off.

Or bank-robbing genies.

Or really peevish, bioelectric Fruit Loops

Thank H'Ronmeer they didn't join forces with the Sinister Spaghetti-o People.

Or presidential candidate Pat Paulsen.

But it was all a battle against SURREALISM, in a vain attempt to keep its madness confined to the canvas...

See? And you think I make these things up...!


K26dp said...

J'onn was wasted on the Justice League. He really should have been on the Doom Patrol.

Diamondrock said...

I would never ever presume that anything you say was made up...

Scipio said...

Actually, I was going to say that Morrison was wasted on the Doom Patrol; he really should have been writing J'onn.

rich said...

Heavens, and I thought I might be first to make the Obligatory Doom Patrol reference. Have to try something more obscure, then.

Ah, I know:

Yes, the villains in the later Martian Manhunter stories would have been right at home in Milestone's Xombi, don't you think? I could easily see J'onn teaming up with Nun of the Above and Catholic Girl.

Anonymous said...

Some of my favorite comics stories, *ever!* I always liked J'onn, and never more than in Journey Into Mystery, when his stories got truly weird. Artist Joe Certa never got enough credit for being able to bring that consummate weirdness to life, either. Thanks; now I'm inspired to go get Showcase Presents: The Martian Manhunter, to re-enjoy these stories in glorious black and white!