Sunday, May 23, 2021

Heroclix Sunday: The Mystery of Prof. Barnes

Prof. Barnes.

P R O F E S S O R   B A R N E S

Who IS Professor Barnes? Only Dennis Marks knew for sure, and it's too late to ask him.

Professor Barnes is a scientist, certainly. He works in a Vast Lab Complex outside Midway City.

I like to imagine that "Vast" is brandname, like "S.T.A.R.".

He has not only lab coat but a COLLARED LAB JACKET. That's the sign of a SERIOUS scientist.  He's not labcoat Aquaman.

He's Doctor Sivana.

He's not the pharmacy tech.  He's the actual PHARMACIST.

Is he merely Carter Hall's colleague? Or is there something more Carter Hall requires of him?

"I sure he would."
"And I'M sure he DOES!"

He knows Carter's secret identity as Hawkman, so clearly it's something more.

Hawkman is a man of needs. Strong ones. Sudden ones.

Is Prof. Barnes The Alfred?

"You may need to look at this, Carter."

Is Prof. Barnes The Commissioner Gordon?

"Well, you DEFINITELY need to look at this, Professor Barnes."

There is no Hawkgirl. So, in her absence, is Prof. Barnes The Vicki Vale?

"Oh, Carter! Did you import that one from Thanagar or buy it here...?"

I am not entirely certain what role he serves in the Filmationverse. But I know what role he must serve in Heroclix.  Like any vague scientist who backs up a superhero, Professor Barnes goes on a S.T.A.R. Labs Scientist dial.

S.T.A.R. Labs Scientist are potentially powerful but unreliable support figures in Heroclix; they work better in pairs, since whatever ability they temporarily gain is held by all of them at the same time, and since if you don't get the ability you want from the first one's roll, you can always try the second one's roll.  

Since no one else seems to work in the Vast Lab Complex (just Carter and Professor Barnes; alone; all day), I had to draw from other versions of Hawkman for a companion scientist: Mavis Trent.

Not the Marvel universe "Mavis Trent"; I refuse to comment on the absurdity that BOTH Marvel and DC have a character improbably named "Mavis Trent".  

I mean Mavis Trent of Midway Museum, the shameless hussy who constantly hit on Carter Hall, even though he was married and his wife was RIGHT THERE working in the museum with them.

Seen here trying to remember how to keep at least one strap up.

Hawkman isn't the only person with strong sudden needs.  

Mavis Trent made Vicki Vale look like a nun.  

This is from the time she decided to move in with Carter, like, the week after Shayera left him.  

But, although it wasn't much emphasized after her first few appearances. she was indeed a scientist, specifically a naturalist.  

Which may explain why she had such trouble keeping her clothes on.


John C said...

The Trent family presumably hails from Rutland, Vermont. The Archie version of Mavis Trent was the insurance adjuster that the company sent to deal with Steve Englehart's stolen car. She's also a murderer, I have to assume, because comic book writers have not historically been particularly even-handed when writing women, Dr. Trent being a case in point...

This setup does raise the question, however, of how Heroclix-Hawkman has time for his adventure, what with all the extracurricular activities his assistants seem to have planned for him. It also brings up all the times that I've heard about male writers saying something unkind about the presence of LGBT characters, then later complain about a "Hawkman replacement," because he's not a muscular shirtless man ready to hammer things. Which is all to say that there's subtext in the franchise, apparently.

Bryan L said...

Filmation! Time for me to rewatch my DVDs. I had completely forgotten Professor Barnes.

MarkAndrew said...

How the hell does Scipio know MARVEL trivia that I don't?

Scipio said...

Just because I don't LIKE it doesn't mean I don't know anything about it :-)