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 411mania » Movies » Columns

Comics 411: The Worst X-Men Characters Ever
Posted by Steve Gustafson on 08.13.2014

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Welcome back to the Comics 411! My name is Steve Gustafson and this is a corner of 411mania reserved for those interested in talking comics! As always, I want to thank everyone who took a few minutes to read and comment last week. Check out my 20 Women You Must Follow on Instagram and write up about Why Michael Bay Doesn't Care What You Think! You can also go and read my interview with Playboy's Miss June, Jessica Ashley and my interview with Playboy's 2014 Playmate of the Year, Kennedy Summers!


The Comics 411 you see before you is about to undergo some serious renovations. I've spoken to the "higher power" and would love to split this into two. I'll have more details next week. Just giving you an FYI.

Apologies for the shortened column this week. I'm camping and limited internet has made it tough to function.


I had two Cat Woman covers from Adam Hughes last week. Which one did you like better?

#53 83.28%
#55 16.72%

No surprise that the cheescake one took this easily! This week is about Spider-Man! Specifically, when Spidey got his new black duds. First up is Marvel Super Heroes: Secret Wars #8 by Mike Zeck and John Beatty. It's up against Amazing Spider-Man #252 by Ron Frenz and Klaus Janson. Which one would you buy?

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Last week we had fun talking about 5 Oddball Marvel Comics That Deserve a Movie. I put up a few choices and had you vote. Here are the results:

Damage Control 25.41%
Squirrel Girl 24.04%
Rom: Spaceknight 21.86%
Micronauts 20.22%
Devil Dinosaur 8.47%

Squirrel Girl fans came out in force! Impressive! Here's what you all had to say in the comments!

Dorath: "Peter Porker, Spider-Ham."

Electrichotdog: "Rom... My brother got the action figure for Xmas back in the 70s. I had the 6 Million Dollar Man."

CCF: "Moon Knight could make for either an interesting movie or TV show. Sure, sure, he's Marvel's answer to Batman, but the guy is also completely insane with multiple personalities that could make for an interesting story line."

Save.Us_Y2J: "I really don't want to see any of those, but Strikeforce: Morituri was all kinds of awesome until it turned into a conspiracy theory crap. That would make an awesome series for Netflix."

W. Ryne Hall: "No love for Devil Dinosaur here. Too bad."

Video Beagle: "I voted Damage Control, though I'd rather tv series than movie."

CyberVenom: "I feel this is a challenge! Consider it accepted!

10. The Circus of Crime
9. Albert and Elsie Dee
8. Willie Lumpkin; Mailman Extraordinaire
7. Arcade
6. Great Lake Avengers (all kidding aside, I want)
5. Beak and Angel
4. Lady Stilt-Man
3. Golden Oldie
2. Sleepwalker
1. Slapstick"

K. Bett: "Damage control can be worked into a few episodes of s.h.I.e.l.d introduce the characters and concept and see how viewers respond. Great lakes avengers could work the same way."

Megalomaniac: "How about we get a Silver Surfer movie before we talk about any other lesser known characters getting their own movie?"

billfnmurray: "IMG Everyone here missed the no fn brainer.


This could be the Neverending Story for Marvel. A mega kids film with classic hero references throughout. Including the Fantastic Four. Disney at the helm? Haha Hell, they could throw in Arcade as the villian. The film would be iron FN clad if they can some way get a G rating. A shear money making machine. Adults and YOUNG children could attend. I'm certain that someday it will be come. I'd bet money."

VT_JizzyFingerz: "Dammit a Barracuda movie is money on the table, for god sakes someone pick it up (looking at you Spike Lee). I also wouldn't mind a movie for Daughters of The Dragon n"

Christian Michaels: "Darkhawk would be awesome!"

AO: "What about a Hit Monkey film?"

Gold Any Ranger: "Rom and the Micronauts would be tricky, as those were both licensed properties. Of course, Rom as a comic outlived Rom the toy by many years. And when they brought back the Spaceknights in a miniseries years after the original run ended, they had to change Rom's name."

Solomon Grundy: "Hard to find something really good, but Arcade as a character could be kinda neat and Cloak & Dagger could be good. TBH one of my favorite movies of the 80's had the same name (Cloak & Dagger) and revolved around a kid, his imaginary friend who was a GI Joe type action figure (played by Dabney Coleman!) , and old couple who were spies and an atari 2600 game cartridge that held the secret info

And if DC ever went this route with their movies, I'd like to mention Doom Patrol!! (though I wish they would get their main characters done right first...those not named Batman)"

Jimmy Jett: "I'd love to see a limited series TV show (or even movie I guess) based on The Twelve. I thought all the issues tying to the change in times were handled well, although I don't see it happening. The issues would likely cause some drama and I thought I heard a few of the characters were in public domain"

moonknight1superfan: "Ahem, Crystar..."

G-Walla: "I'm not really feeling any of these. While Devil Dinosaur is awesome, I think a movie with Ka-Zar or Shanna the She-Devil would be more accessible. How about Agents of Atlas. Though I'm also a fan of Cloak and Dagger and the New Warriors."

A.More: "I feel ROM, with the synopsis you gave, would be better suited as a TV series. Great Lakes Avengers, while i enjoyed them, would be more of a spoof i guess (and you could include Squirrel Girl in that, she was a member). Could as well make Marvel Zombies then.

I would really like a Thunderbolts movie, maybe take over for the Avengers for a movie and then lead into Avengers 4? Although that is not oddball...

Hmmm, how about giving Speedball and the New Warriors (in their reality TV incarnation) a shot? Could even lead into Civil War.

And then there is Forbush Man. 'Nuff said."

Thanks again! Good stuff all around. If only we could get Hollywood to listen! This week we take a look at our favorite mutants! Instead of praising them, we look at the ones who aren't...so cool.

The WORST X-Men Characters Ever!

When you cast the net to gather the WORST X-Men characters, you get surprised how much selection you get back. I'll present MY worst, YOU vote, and then tell me who I missed below!

Power: Invisible skin. I don't know what inspired his creation but that's not a handy power to have unless you're teaching a class on the human body. It should be noted that in Wraiths first appearance, his look set a street full of people to start beating him to death.

Slipstream‘s can "generate a warp portal in the fabric of space and ride the resultant warp-wave…Slipstream could use this ability to travel to virtually any point on Earth at faster-than-light speed, and can ferry others through the portal with him." What does that mean? He can teleport but only when he's on his little surfboard. He's a poor, poor, poor man's Silver Surfer.

This guy can mimic any sound. Oh, has magic swords which could not harm the pure of heart. I get the feeling they designed him to do something cool but that didn't work out so they kept adding to him, trying to turn him into...something. Didn't work.

UGH. Pure '90's right here. Adam Neramani never had a chance. He had the power to set fire to people's blood and his own blood is acid. To note how cool he was, they had him wear his cap backwards and wear a motorcycle suit with lots of pouches and gadgets. Oh, he turned down membership in the X-Men. I remember reading rumors that he was to be the "third Summers brother," but thankfully that idea was ditched.

Maggott. Where to start with this guy. His mutation was that his digestive tract could crawl around likes large worms and turn his skin blue. He also spoke in South African slang.

The original lame character, in my book. Cypher can read any language. That's his power.

I wanted to put Ink and Skin together but the jokes would be too obvious. OK, Ink is on the list but isn't a mutant but he is actually empowered by another mutant. See, there's another mutant named Leon whose powers is giving power-bestowing tattoos and Ink is that guy. This could have been cool but is really, really dumb.

Hey! Shocker! Lifeguard is actually Slipstream's sister! Her mutant power? When people are in trouble, she saves them, either by transforming or developing a situation-specific mutant power. Credit this one to a lazy writer.

Shatterstar was created by the other-dimensional being known as Mojo, Shatterstar is a genetically bred gladiator. He went through a lot of rumored origins but his long ponytail, double-bladed swords, and ridiculous poses are enough to get him on this list.

Multi-ventriloquism. That's all.

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Do YOU want to be a reviewer for COMICS 411? Send me an email at stevethegoose@gmail.com to find out how! If we can get enough people doing a weekly review on a consistent basis, I would love to spin it off into it's own column. One step closer to getting a Comic Book section back at 411mania! Take it away, RobF and Rob Bonnette!

New Avengers #22

By RobF

The storylines and tension that has been growing since issue #1 have come to a head here in #22. The strained relationship between Namor and T'Challa has escalated into a first class war with the remaining members of the Illuminati caught in the middle. Can they recover in time to prevent the next incursion?

The story begins with the aftermath of the bomb that murdered 7 billion people. Namor contemplates how with just a flick of a switch they could cause a whole world to be destroyed. While he proudly proclaims himself and his partners "monsters" each member of the team is left feeling different levels of revulsion about what they have just committed.

The majority of the issue focuses directly on the ongoing tension between the Black Panther and Namor. The hatred between these two characters has been building for almost two years now, and it finally comes to a head here. This is a deeply personal battle for which there is no return. One can only wonder where these 2 will take this feud. It looks like only the demise of one of these men will end this blood feud.

With the incredible moral strain of Namor's decisions taking its toll on the team, there's little time to mourn the dead as the issue ends with another attack on the way. The endless cycle of death continues unbroken, and the Illuminati must accept what they have become.

The one detriment to the issue is the artwork. I don't think Kev Walker's art is appropriate here. Some characters like the Hulk are oddly proportioned and the Beast just looks strange.

With another incursion only hours away and the team in shambles one can only wonder how they will rally to save the Earth and what steps they will take to do so. Whatever's coming next has me wishing this book would go weekly.

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Grayson #2

By Rob Bonnette

This is the second issue in the new series that features Dick Grayson going undercover in the secret organization Spyral in order to determine what they're after for Batman. It opens up with Helena Bertinelli, Dick's partner, at some kind of finishing school leading an archery lesson to a class of female students when she's interrupted by an injured Spyral agent codenamed Hood dropping in. We then flash over to Gotham where Batman is dismantling a street gang while having a secure conversation with Dick. The go over everything from how Dick's work is progressing to his staged funeral back in Gotham. A cool tidbit is the use of codenames for everyone they speak about: Bruce's name is Malone (as in Matches Malone, the alias he uses when going undercover in plainclothes among Gotham's criminals), Dick is Birdwatcher, Alfred is the Butler, and Batgirl is Red Riding Hood. Dick mentioning Batgirl is an important thing. Before he was attacked in the first issue of Forever Evil, he and Barbara were heading in the direction of putting aside all the pretenses and excuses and getting together. Of all the people in the Bat family, lying to her is the most difficult. Tim Drake would be cool with it once the bigger mission was made clear and Jason Todd is cynical enough to not be outraged or even surprised. When the eventual reveal happens, Barbara is going to be extremely pissed at both Bruce and Dick. But anyway, Bruce and Dick end their talk right as Helena is walking in the room to inform Dick of their next assignment.

The mission involves tracking down a missing scientist who stole some secret equipment that gives her super speed, but also makes her ravenous to the point of cannibalism. When Dick and Helena finally are able to catch her, Dick gets a his first real view of how Spyral operates when it comes to dealing with the super-powered fugitives it catches. We end with the head of Spyral looking at his master board of Superheroes with secret identities, seeing that he has uncovered that the Flash is Barry Allen (in the first issue he'd found that Batman is Bruce Wayne), followed by a final conversation between Bruce and Dick where Dick gives an update on the mission and they reminisce on a fun time a while back with the two of them, Alfred, and Barbara. This issue continued where the first one left off, literally a day after. It continued the story of Dick trying to get his bearings in a secret organization and dealing with the moral compromises he's going to have to make while serving a bigger mission. Yes, as Nightwing he toed the line between following and breaking the law, but here he's having to keep his morals in check while carrying out missions for Spyral. This issue had a good bit of action and some more insight into the relationship between Dick and the other members of the Bat family, focusing more on life away from the costumes and crime fighting. Spyral is also proving to be every bit as shady an organization as ARGUS; their bigger purpose is still unfolding. All in all an interesting follow up to the debut issue.

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Before I say GOODBYE!
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