You remember The Hangman, don't you? He used to lurk in the back of Pep Comics, hiding in the shadows cast by The Shield's bright shining goodness. If you don't remember, it's probably because you've never read any of his stories. Frankly, I'm here to make sure you DON'T, with my ...
Ten Reasons Not to Read
1. It's full of torture porn that would make even the Cenobites grimace.
2. Its grotesque close-ups of human terror will make you long for the cheery wholesome all-ages art of EC Comics.
3. Its figure work is what you would get if Plastic Man had a baby with the WPA, while possessed by Satan.
4. It will destroy your faith in the use of storyboard art as a means of storytelling and undermine your sense of narrative time and space.
5. The Hangman's punches have the power to turn human bodies into rubber upon impact, and it is NOT a good look for the human body.
7. His name is "Anthracite" (which I consider bad enough to stand as its own separate item).
8. It will permanently pervert your sense of perspective as surely as if you were trapped in an Assyrian bas-relief from the reign of Ashurnasirpal II.
9. You'll feel as if you've fallen into a Nazi propaganda film about 'degenerates' who make Mike Sekowsky's villains look like the Greek ideal of beauty.
10. You will realize that, as if the world were a Final Destination film, hideous and ironic death awaits your every step.
Oh, and here's a freebie for white folks:
Besides taking over his dead brother's Pep strip, Hangman also took custody of his brother's romantic relationship, which...it's not nearly as objectionable as Anthracite, but it certainly doesn't help his case.
You'll be happy to know that, when Jerry Siegel (I think) rebooted the Archie superhero line in the '60s, the Hangman was a villain. Nobody seemed shocked by the change, and he didn't seem particularly interested in the fact that his brother (the Comet) was alive and one of the people he was trying to kill. And, if I'm not mistaken, every reboot since has ignored the fact that he's probably comics' first legacy hero...
(Upshot: I agree. Don't read.)
It's good point; stepping into his dead brother's shoes instantly was perhaps the creepiest thing about him. And, for the record, they got a lot of grief for killing off the Comet from readers (you can see it in the messages from the editor in subsequent issues).
Wasn't the Comet also a killer?
Still, at least the Hangman's a golden age character who's neither the Shield nor Green Arrow [and Speedy]. IHMO we've been needing one of those around here for a while. Not that my opinion's relevant, I'm just sayin.' ;-) Thanks.
"Hangman also took custody of his brother's romantic relationship"
How very biblical of him.
I actually found the artwork intriguing in a surrealistic sort of way.
And then we got to Anthracite.
Even if you set aside the, ahem, social difficulties inherent in Anthracite's portrayal...
he's drawn in a jarringly different STYLE. This was a phenomenon in Golden Age characters, where comic relief characters were drawn in a different style to indicate their role. It may have been a convention of the time, but it's pretty jarring to the modern eye.
Blatantly offensive racial caricature-ness, Anthracite might qualify as one of the "funny fat friends" you once discussed in article. I mean...if he'd been FUNNY. :-|
At least he got to help fight the villains and save the day like any other comic relief sidekick however stereotypical. Unless...he didn't and was instead a theoretically humorous screw-up. :-|
"Good lord, it can't be!"
"The Hangman!" "Leaving for the
But the unintentional haiku are there. Do you know how long it's been since you pointed out unintentional haiku, Scipio? Too long.
It feels good to find them, doesn't it, Nathan?
Now that I mention it, yes, the Comet WAS a killer.
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