Charlton VS Mighty MLJ

Monday, August 30, 2010

Marvel Mondays: Blonde Brickhouse Boys/Babes

So far with Fawcett Comics' Marvel Family we've considered the main man, the young apprentice, the long lost sister, the evil ancestor and the wizened old coots that empowered such beings. Today we depart from the template to reflect on the long-time friends, once foes, of this family. While not appearing a great deal throughout the decade their presence was known and their influence on both the Marvels and their opposite number, the Sivana Family, was felt.

For you see, our two candidates today were actually the first two additions to Doctor Sivana's infamous family, sometime before their younger siblings Georgia and Thaddeus Junior appeared. Magnifus was the firstborn son of Sivana, and a more marvelous physical specimen you could not find, at least not without the souped up powers of Captain Marvel. Both he and his older sister Beautia were the offspring of Sivana and an unidentified woman, whom he left on the planet Venus to rule while he himself returned to Earth to attempt conquering it without success. Evidently, at least on Venus itself, Magnificus' might matched Caps for a brief period. After initial tension between the two, however, Cap and Mag became friends.

The aforementioned Beautia was installed by her father as queen over Venus' strange creatures. Herself immediately enamored by the rugged looks of her papa's arch-foe, she nevertheless did his bidding off and on for awhile trying to defeat the "Big Red Cheese". Instead, she ended up falling in love with him and later returning with her brother to Earth to become extended members of the Captain's family. Both she and her brother were instrumental in later years overturning their sire's sick schemes. On on occasion, Magnificus actually impersonated Captain Marvel while being flown around and protected by Captain Marvel Junior, in an attempt to free Cap's alter ego Billy Batson from a death trap. In the end, both brother and sister were among the Marvel's closest friends and biggest supporters.

Mister Muscle's career in the limelight was about as long (or as brief) as that of Magnificus, as was that of his girl Friday, Miss Muscles. Both filled in the "perfect specimens" of humanity niche on Earth-Four like that of the Sivana siblings.

And finally, on Earth-MLJ, you can't have more direct parallels for Magnificus and Beautia than Steel Sterling and Ms. Sampson, two paragons of perfection!

In 1954, aspiring comic book publisher Charlton purchased the rights to several prominent characters from the expiring Fawcett Comics, such as Ibis, Golden Arrow and Lance O'Casey. In 1980 and 1985, DC Comics purchase Fawcett's Marvel Family then Charlton's Action Heroes, and the two were linked once more, now on parallel Earths, Four and Shazam.Now the MLJ has been added to their stable of characters, we examine the parallels in this series. 

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