The man who would be Man-Man was once an ordinary joe like you or me -- until one day, he was bitten...by a RADIOACTIVE MAN!
Normally, that sort of thing leads to hair loss, dizziness, copious vomiting, bleeding gums, a throbbing lemon-sized tumour in one's throat and a lingering, agonizing death. But not always.
The essence of normalacy, Paul was an average mild-mannered insurance claims adjuster until he ran into Man-Man while sampling a grape in his local convenience store. He remained an average mild-mannered insurance claims adjuster, but after saving Man-Man from an agonizing withdrawal from the snack treat "Meat in a Straw," became Man-Man's de facto sidekick. Paul refused the dubious honour.
Then his house burnt down and he lost his job and his house insurance along with it. Now, Paul lives on Man-Man's couch.
But he's still not his goddamned sidekick.
Clerk's destiny was set from birth, the victim of a bad typist in the hospital's registration office, a mother who had seen Gone with the Wind 3,249 times and a father who was too soused to remember the proper spelling of "Clark."
After years of schoolyard bullying, Clerk became a hardened and world-weary young man, rapidly rising through the ranks of convenience storedom to rule the roost as much more than a mere clerk. His keen eye, unflagging spirit and sheer tenacious grit led to him rocketing to the top as the assistant part-time day manager at Salacious Mart!
The next day, he got killed and eaten by Slim, the sentient result of an ill-fated attempt to artificially produce Meat in a Straw.
Slim was the result of the aforementioned ill-fated attempt to artificially create Meat in a Straw. It promptly killed and ate Clerk Gable, then had a nap.
Its current whereabouts are unknown. It might be running a craps game on a cruise ship.
Then again, it might not be.
|The Melon Fondler|
On every world, in every universe, there are titans...men who by their sheer existance warp and skew the aspects of the world they live in, carving destiny with their mighty thews as legendary John Henry once took hammer to steel.
This man fondles melons.
Man-Man's GREATEST FOE.
|The Moving Men...|
Once, they were noble and jovial blue-collar heroes, jesting and laughing as they carried pianos and lovingly packed the china into specially-padded boxes.
Now, they are villains...roaming from house to house and moving whatever they darn well please. What happened to these noble men? What changed them?
A story for another time, perhaps...
If the origins of The Moving Men are shrouded in mystery, so are those of Dolly...more shrouded, even. And, uh, more mysterious. She's shrouded in mystery and such.
She's a woman and she's big and she likes to break things. And people.
That's about it.
Belgium is one of Europe's shining cultural jewels, producing great cartoonists such as Hergé, brilliant singer/songwriters like Jaques Brel, and even Agatha Christie's famous fictional detective Hercule Poirot. Belgium is the homeland of proud Belgian Guillaume Boisfrancs, who left home to seek his fortune and wound up the butler for a mentally unstable super hero who insists that he is french and his name is Frenchy. Frenchy spends his days plotting revenge against his idiot employer and all his stupid friends. Walloon! Walloon!
Globetrotting socialite, superstar brain surgeon, friend and philanthropist to people the world over...Garth Weston is NOT Man-Man's demonic clone, just his twin brother. But try telling Man-Man that.
One baby is a handful. One EVIL baby is a trial. But an infinite number of replicating evil babies? The GooGooPlex may be the most evil force the world has ever known. If you ever babysit a child with unibrow -- NEVER FEED HIM AFTER MIDNIGHT.
Has Paul found love at last? Or just a semi-negligent mother willing to leave Paul to tend to the most insidious force of evil the world has ever known? Or both? Who knows? Paul doesn't. He thinks Linda's purty.
When Man-Man bought the Man-Mansion, it came with a surprise...Doctor Vivisectus, the most evil genius on three continents! The former tenant of the house, the evil Doctor appealed to Man-Man's good nature to allow him to keep using the basement to build creations of pure evil. He comes out from time to time to try and vanquish Fun City's greatest champion as part of his ongoing quest to (ba bum bum) RULE THE WORLD!
There ain't nothin' worse than a forty-foot sentient cheese dinosaur bent on your utter destruction. Or is there? Made of reconstituted pizza cheese in one of Dr. Vivisectus' mad schemes, the Lactosaurus may or may not be the scion of a new race of cheese-beings destined to rule the world. He was checked, thank gouda, by...
Formerly the small-time acne-ridden crook known as Pizzaface, Zitgeist turned to heroism to clear his name of a crime he didn't commit. Now reborn in the crucible of justice, he has sworn to use his amazing acne for good as Zitgeist -- possibly the world's grossest hero!
|The Lifeless Cheddar Woman|
"Love is Love," the old saying goes. And if you're a certain mad genius named Dr. Vivisectus, "Love is a crudely-carved cheddar woman with a mop for 'hair.'" Let's move on, shall we?
|Doze of the Interminable|
Imagine, if you will, a race of gods older than gods themselves. Timeless, eternal, and incapable of SHUTTING UP. These seven "Indeterminables" talk, and talk, and talk, and talk, and talk...Doze is one of them. He's all spooky and stuff.
|Betty the Chicken Cultist|
Ever been to one of those all-day breakfast diners? Did you ever wonder how many eggs you have to serve before you start looking at chickens as something more than just, say, livestock -- much, MUCH more...
|Scary Story Man|
A camp counsellor gone mad, Scary Story Man wants to tell his scary stories to the world and wrap Fun City in a discomfort blanket of ABJECT TERROR! Thankfully, Man-Man stops him, with a little help from your friend and mine...
|Jacques Derrida! A two-fisted French philosopher and the father of Deconstructionism, Derrida is there when the fight for justice runs straight into an ethnoculturally-biased narrative! Who knows what evil lurks in the space between words? DERRIDA knows!|
|Future Dr. Vivisectus|
Dr. Vivisectus doesn't get any less evil...or mad... in the future, as Paul finds out when Future Doctor Vivisectus travels to our present to give his time machine to Present Doctor Vivisectus! That's not the end of the horror, however, as Paul meets...
|Future Hunchback Paul|
In an extreme tactical error, Paul once plunged himself away from Wardship under Man-Man by becoming Dr. Vivisectus' ward. He thought it would be temporary...until Future Hunchback Paul visited him, as bitter as ever and with an eerie taste for jerky treats!
When is the Googooplex not the Googooplex? In the future...when a 17-year-old GGPlex has overrun the world with depressed teenagers! Paul abandoned ship on his plans to save the future from Team Angst...but when time travel is involved, who knows what may happen in the future, or the past, or an alterate timeline, or a possible world, or...aw, screw it.
The father of modern microbiology and inventor of Pasteurization, Louis Pasteur went head-to-head with Man-Man in a municipal election that wound up being a little...well...silly. This storyline also saw the re-introduction of...
Nobody remembered quite who elected him, or exactly when, but Mayor Pope ruled over Fun City for um...a while... with his benevolent smile and jaunty wave from the Mayormobile keeping people from asking too many questions. But what WAS his secret?
A self-styled "trapsmaster" and one of Man-Man's oldest foes, Jerry Rigg went from being the 1978 World Champion at the "Mousetrap!" Board Game Play-O-Rama directly into villainy! Brilliant but tedious, he has been known to work with another bright light with its dimmer switch turned to "Evil..."
What happens when a game-show themed villain realizes there's a glut of game-show-themed villains on the market and decides to incorporate a second (and wholly unrelated) gimmick -- his lifelong love for delicious licorice treats? Quick answer, reader: (A) The Quizzler! With his patent-pending Licorice Gun and a penchant for snappy patter, he's (A) the answer to crime's greatest hopes and (B) the worst enemy Fun City could ever hope to have!
Part of the fray for the Municipal Council seat in the Fun City 2001 General Election, Kyle Lanz (called "Randy" by his friends) is an axe-wielding, baby-kissing politico with a ha ha murder tendency to be kill all babies drink blook arrgh be perhaps a little too open with whatever's chop chop death death on his mind.
Ever notice how in old comics, most of the heroes seem a little more...jaunty...than perhaps they should be? Rosy cheeks, a somewhat overwrought gleam in the eye, a few too many teeth showing... let's face facts, kids, Superman spent most of the '60s sauced. I mean, how else could a guy with the ability to destroy the planet by tap-dancing real hard put up with the constant losers trying to trip him up? He has LASER GODDAMN VISION and can TRAVEL THROUGH TIME and REARRANGE MOLECULES WITH HIS HANDS and FREEZE THINGS WITH HIS FRIGGIN' BREATH and he spends all his time fighting A REALLY SMART BALD GUY! C'mon!
Um. Anyway, the Breathalizer is that era's worst enemy. Why he wants to fight Man-Man is anyone's guess.
Well hell, what's a master villain without a minion to do his bidding? Aspiring to the fast-paced world of zucchini farming, Minion Piotrowski quickly disvoered that his ill-fated name pretty much locked him into a destiny not of his choosing...that of full-time minion. It's a living, right? Right?
Um...it's Beethoven. He's a grumpy genius.
|The Amazing Kenn Scott|
We can't tell you who he is, lest you haven't read the archives yet and we ruin one of the plots of the comic. But he's important, O reader. Yes, he is.
Finally and unwittingly fulfilling Man-Man's lifelong dream to have a bona fide evil clone, Dr. Vivisectus provides Cheese-Man, an evil replica made entirely out of Skittles. Just kidding! He's made out of cheese, you silly! Hence the name.
Maternal love knows no bounds...except for fifteen bucks and a pack of smokes! Unlike many mothers, who just complain about their ungrateful children, Paul's mom takes capitalist action -- if he's not gonna send her a birthday card, she's gonna take what she can get!
|Hipmunk and Chipfunk|
Beat-talkin', disco-dancin' rodents that know how to organize a mean squirrel posse! Duck and cover, F.W. Burgess -- Tales of the Green Freakin' Forest was NEVER like this!
If Jacques Cousteau had been interested in squirrels instead of marine life, we would probably already know a lot more about the little fellers. Unfortunately, he wasn't. So Paul finds out rather indadvertantly that squirrels are attracted to his extreme grumpiness, becoming their de facto leader for a short time -- and a reluctant "hero" that Man-Man dubs "Grumpy Squirrel."
A hard-drinkin' man's man of a cop, Officer Hemingway is an asset to the force. He also talks in very short sentences.
Inventor of the Reality Bomb, Rex Nihilo wages an unrelenting war against reality, obscurity, good in general, and babies.
Lauded as the world's most brilliant mind since some guy named Einstein, rendered eerily Professor X-like in his wheelchair, Stephen Hawking is a hero for millions! And, thanks to the Reality Bomb...ALL HAIL GOD EMPEROR HAWKING!
|The League of Man-Men|
What do you do when Man-Man just isn't enough? Summon the LEAGUE OF MAN-MEN! Well, I mean, you could. We don't recommend it.
Former members of Man-Man's Rogues Gallery, these poor devils fell victim to his short-lived emulation of Doc Brass, pulp hero of the 1930s. Doc Brass had a "Crime School," see, where he'd OPERATE ON PEOPLE'S BRAINS to remove the "parts of their brains that made them criminal." I'm not making this up. Check out some (real world) old Doc Savage pulp novels if you don't believe me.
|The Cosby Menace|
Look out! What's worse than a cosmic menace? Anything created by Jim Starlin! I mean, that man makes, like, MULTIVERSE-sized disasters. Ever read "Infinity War?" Holy crap! Ahem. Anyway, a simple error in communications leads Man-Man to believe that an approaching Cosby threat is...uh...never mind.
|The Evilbot 9000|
You know when the answering machine does that thing where it flashes, but the message doesn't play, so you don't think there are messages, so you hit "rewind," and then when you're listening the next day you hear a message and you've recorded over the very important bit with the phone number and you yell "I HATE YOU, ANSWERING MACHINE!" Guess what? It hates you too.
Say what you like about the Flemish, but they're a dedicated bunch. Dedicated enough to send one of their top men over to Fun City to disguise himself as a Walloon and become Fun City's greatest hero, only to disgrace himself to ruin the good name of Walloons everywhere! Dedicated, those Flems...and held narrowly in check by...
|Albert II, King of Belgium!|
Keeping the world safe for peaceful interactions between Walloon and Flemish alike, Albert II has to sit astride that powderkeg that is modern Belgium! A level-headed leader with a saintly disposition and access to the best technology Interpol has to offer, Albert is ready to fight for justice, truth, and Belgians of every creed!
|Gutsy: The Man With Guts!|
Hoy! Ninja! Fight GUTSY, THE MAN WITH GUTS! Blinded in a radioactive accident and trained by the deadly martial arts master Stuck, Gutsy: The Man With Guts is all about ninja-battling action! Beware, Hand! Hoy!
|The Misdemeanour Society|
Advancing anarchy through increments -- it's the MISDEMEANOUR SOCIETY! Tired of the broad-strokes approach taken by most villains, the Society has reversed the Broken Window Theory and turned it -- to CRIME! The next time you see litter...the next time somebody sticks their hamburger pickles to the window of a fast-food chain...the next time somebody leaves their gum in the fountain, wonder: carelessness? Bad citizenship? Or the BEGINNING OF THE END?
Great malice starts young, and this l'il feller is the meanest man ever to sling a GRIT! Thankfully, Man-Man is hip to his unique brand of evil, even if nobody else is...
|Pyrex, the Relatively Transparent and Highly Heat-Resistant Man!|
I mean, hell, after a weird accident at the glassworks, what would YOU do? Go on DISABILITY? Villainy, baby! It's the only way to travel!
A fiend among fixers, and the trouble with technicians...the Repairerer is responsible for the Evilbot 9000 and a bothersome spelling conundrum. He's also a nod to Shep's favourite Lee/Ditko creation from the early Spider-Man days, The Tinkerer.
|Daylight Savings Tim|
Weilding the uncanny power of the Counter-Clock, with its ability to collect and disburse the "lost" and "gained" hours of Daylight Savings Time at will, Daylight Savings Tim's career in villainy was cut short when he didn't even make it to Man-Man, but got his Counter-Clock smashed by an evil-induced Garth and was promptly lost in a time vortex. Them's the breaks, I guess...
Back to Man-Man!