Charlton vs Mighty MLJ

Two parallel universes from two silver age comic book publishers examined ad naseum!

Sunday, February 28, 2010

Sideline Sundays: Faithful Fake Fauna

Faithful Fake Fauna? Que? Well the silver age of comics was quite literally littered with various animal sidekicks of their heroic masters, yet most times they were actual animals. In the golden age of comics, Robotman created a robotic pet/sidekick named, you guessed it, Robbie the Robot-Dog. The "pets" we consider today weren't typically on the "sidelines", so to speak, like most ficitional supporting characters. Still they never had speaking parts, very rarely displayed any thinking abilities, and were more or less flying devices with cool gadgets that aided their gravity-bound owners. We give you...Blue Bettle's Bug and Black Hood's Nightmare, for your viewing pleasure (or not):


As you no doubt observed, the Bug was a vehicle of vertitable visual delights! Part aircrafter, part laboratory, part lounge for the stressed out scientist needing a break from the anxieties of capturing corrupt criminals.


By way of comparison, Nightmare was rather aaestically dull or outright goofy in its presentation. Looking like a slapped together menagerie of sheetmetal. At least it recovered quickly from attacks before its master went splatts on terra firma below.


In this sequence, after Ted Kord aka the Blue Beetle faces a robotic duplicate of Dan Garrett aka the former Blue Beetle, its the Bug that lashes out using a powerful charge of electricity to destroy the droid. How was it able to accomplish this feet, since it originally operated by remote control? Did Cord accidentally hit the switch activiating it, or did it acquire some rudimentary intelligence?

Nightmare also saw to the preservation of its master, in the only manner it could provide this, by sacrificing itself to save the Black Hood from an alien adversary. And mercifully, despite the Hood's promise to himself, this robotic monstrosity was quickly forgetten. Well..until this post...sorry.