Monday, October 22, 2007

D-List Monsters of Super-Hero Land: The Spook, Part One

Starting now and lasting until Halloween -- at least! -- I'm taking a jaundiced gander at some D-List Monsters of Super-Hero Land, and every post is going to feature the Gosh-Darned Batman! (Y'know, the pre-Crisis one.) First up, the Spook!


Let's all pitch in and buy the Spook an iron, shall we? 'Cause he's wrinklier than a mummy's balls. And he needs to go a size or two down with his gloves. (The Spook thinks droopy fingertips are positively spine-tingling.)

But I'm most concerned about Batman's fighting stance on this splash page. He's got the Spook by the throat, hoisting him up in the air --as is his wont -- but check out the Spook's feet!


If Batman lets go, the Spook is going to fall a grand total of one inch. Maybe if Batman wasn't attempting to do the splits, or surreptitiously unstick his sweaty junk from his left thigh, or whatever, he could lift the Spook up a tad higher. Jeebus. I know that super-heroes think they look cool when their legs are spread wide open -- as do pole dancers -- but in this case it just seems counter-productive.

So, what's the Spook's deal? He's an illusionist!

*snaps fingers, signaling Tusker to play farty-sounding "stinger" on his ocarina*

Which means the Spook is damn lucky he lives in the DC Universe and not the Marvel one, 'cause over there he'd be pitted against Thor, or the Punisher, or some equally violent brute, and he'd be pounded into little bloody gobbets in his first appearance. And then Scourge would show up and finish him off. The Marvel folks, they don't stand for fakey magician-types. They hate 'em worse than mimes, actually. Just look what happened to the Miracle Man! Sure, Mysterio was a mainstay, but that's only because he wore that protective bubble helmet, and because he chose Marvel's gooiest, whiniest, puss-pants neurotic for his "arch-foe."

In the DCU of 1976, however, the Spook gets to match wits with a fallible Batman who can be induced to utter things like this:



Phillip said...

If he wasn't holding on to that rope, he would've clasped his hand to his chest as he gasped...

Jon the Intergalactic Gladiator said...


Anonymous said...

You do have to appreciate Batman's sense of wonder, there. Any of us? We'd sigh at the gimmick and call in one of our dozen friends who pass through walls on a regular basis. And then have a good laugh at those raggedy pixie-shoes.

Batman? He dangles from a rope that can't possibly be attached to anything, jaw agape in awe.

Speaking of the pixie-shoes and looking at those eyes, that's a very Gothamesque costume. I'm surprised no writer since has brought the Spook back as one of Batman's mob of enforcers. Sidekicks! I meant to say sidekicks. Anyway, I guess the unfortunate name might have something to do with that.

Scipio said...

Gasp! Ernie Chua made Batman look hot; always.

And please give the Spook his due, BB: he was an illusionist and architect.

Scipio said...

P.S. Morrison did bring back the Spook recently; he had Damien behead him, so it's really more like "The Rolling Head of the Spook".

Anonymous said...

I hate it when my sweaty junk sticks to the inside of my thigh just as I'm lifting some jerk one-handed by the neck.

As usual, hilarious.

Anonymous said...

I spent the whole 1970s and 80s suspecting that the Spook was just the Gentleman Ghost's back-up outfit, for when his ectoplasmic tux was at the cleaners. Looks like that one's finally been laid to rest.

Jeremy Rizza said...

Phillip: And if only his mom's beautiful necklace of pearls hadn't been broken, he could have clutched them.

Jon: You're getting overstimulated. I'm going to have to walk you out of the blog and have you lie down on the divan while I fetch you a cordial.

Anonymous: Good point. And nowadays, he might snap a photo with his Bat-camera-phone.

Scipio: An illusionist and an architect? Ah, so he's like the Phantom of the Opera. If only somebody had written an overwrought, incomprehensible opera about the Spook, he might have made it into the big leagues! (Or at least, into one of the Schumacher Batman films.) And I didn't mean to imply I didn't like the guy; it's just that his modus operandi seems kinda nonsensical.

Scipio: Balls. Although it sounds like he had a cooler demise than Kite Man.

Justin: That's why I always used to have Weight Wizard unstick my balls for me. *sighs wistfully*

Interloper: That's a good idea, though. Kind of a netherworldly muumuu.

MaGnUs said...

Yeah Bats, you're friends with a man who can travel in time under his own power (not to mention bending steel with his bare hands and all that), and you gasp at a dude walking through walls. Firestorm can do that too, so can J'onn.

Jeremy Rizza said...

Maybe he's just really impressed by the Spook's shoes. One doesn't see cobalt blue leather pixie boots every day. Hell, I kinda wish I owned a pair.

MaGnUs said...

Uhm... ok....