Friday, June 22, 2018 • Morning Edition • "Your boob-window into the world of comics."

Your Top Modern Characters part 68

Written by Chris Mitchell on Wednesday, April 01 2009 and posted in Features
Top List
Some fun characters this batch.




142. Jack in the Box (27 points) jackinthebox.jpg

Year first appeared: 199

I love this book. I LOVE THIS BOOK!! Buy it. Please. I will accept your thanks later.

In the history of Astro City, three men have taken the identity of Jack-in-the-Box. The first Jack-in-the-Box was Jack Johnson, who was one of the first African Americans to work in the toy manufacturing industry and design toys for the Whamco Corporation in the 1960s. Active from 1964 to his death in 1983. His son Zachary Johnson, owner and CEO of Z.J. Toys, took the identity of Jack-in-the-Box from 1989 until recently.

Due to his wife pregnancy and visitations from three alternate future versions of his to-be-born child, showing him what his son might become if his father kept fighting crime and ultimately die, he left the role to his protégé, Roscoe James, active from now on.

Two individuals from the Jack-in-the-Box line of heroes come back from the future to try to "rectify" errors they see in history. One is a genetically mutated clown, the other is a deadly cyborg. Both of them hate crime with such a passion that they would rip a jay-walker's limbs off because jaywalking is a crime. A possible son of Cracker Jack advised him about these potential futures.


leatscake.jpg141. L (27 points)

Year first appeared: 2003

"We got Batman, Japan has L. Be it that I'm more a fan of the live action version than the anime or manga. But that's only because the live action had the logical conclusion to the story, with L beating the protagonist, Light.

L is just one of those characters who instantly grabs your intention and keeps hold of it long since the story he's in is done."

Light Yagami is an extremely intelligent young man who resents the crime and corruption in the world. His life undergoes a drastic change when he discovers a mysterious notebook, known as the "Death Note", lying on the ground. The Death Note's instructions claim that if a human's name is written within it, that person shall die. Light is initially skeptical of the notebook's authenticity, but after experimenting with it, Light realizes that the Death Note is real. After meeting with the previous owner of the Death Note, a shinigami named Ryuk, Light seeks to become "the God of the New World" by passing his keen judgment on those he deems to be evil or who get in his way. A shinigami's Death Note is a notebook that can kill any human whose name is written in it. All Death Notes are governed by the same set of rules determining the extents and limitations of the Notes' powers.

Soon, the number of inexplicable deaths of reported criminals catches the attention of the International Police Organization and a mysterious detective known only as "L". L quickly learns that the serial killer, dubbed by the public as "Kira" (derived from the Japanese pronunciation of the English word "killer"), is located in Japan. L also concludes that Kira can kill people without laying a finger on them. Light realizes that L will be his greatest nemesis, and a game of psychological cat and mouse between the two begins.

After several murders, Misa Amane, a possessor of another Death Note, meets Light and tries to help him to do his work but she is captured by L. Light makes a plan involving renouncing ownership of both Death Notes, and all of his memories of them, and turns himself in to L for surveillance. After losing his memories, Light and L start to investigate a criminal group named "Yotsuba" together who had Misa's Death Note. When arresting them, Light recovers all his memories while touching the Death Note, remembers his plan, and forces the former owner of Misa's Death Note, the shinigami Rem, to kill L.

After L's death, Light is granted the position of the "new L". Light is challenged by L's successor, Near, in a battle of minds. Near automatically suspects Light to be Kira and plans different ways of attack. In the meantime, Kira has gained much of public support, and has contacts to help him continue killing criminals. Mello abducts one of these contacts, and Kira kills his own contact. Mello dies in the aftermath, Near is then able to use his SPK members to find Kira's other contact, and create a fake, duplicate Death Note. This is used to trick Kira into "killing" Near and the SPK with a fake death note. Obviously, Near and the SPK remain alive and use Kira's own signed Death Note as evidence to arrest him. In the end, Light is caught by the SPK and killed by Ryuk.


damage.jpg140. Damage (27 points)

Year first appeared: 1994

After World War II, German biogeneticist Klaus Schimmel was brought to America, under the identity of Egrin Wahrman, to continue the research which created the Nazi super-soldier Baron Blitzkrieg. Failing to create results, Wahrman's government funding was eliminated and lingered until Vandal Savage became his secret financer and Wahrman founded the Symbolix Corporation. Providing Wahrman with the genetic material of several members of the Justice Society and All-Star Squadron, Vandal Savage was well on his way to creating an instrument of revenge.

After successfully creating DNA, which would carry the metagene, Vandal Savage abducted a donor whose biology would be receptive to the genetic manipulation - the recently pregnant Mary Pratt, wife of the superhero known as the Atom, Al Pratt. After his birth, the child was left in the care of Symbolix employee John Emerson and his family, and the boy was named Grant. When the young Emerson was still a child, Vandal Savage acquired the genetic material of several Justice League members, which were grafted upon the boy's DNA.

At age 16, Grant's powers began to manifest and Symbolix killed the Emersons attempting to collect him, but he escaped to join the Titans, who helped him learn control over his powers as the explosive Damage. After a tour of duty with the Titans and Freedom Fighters (where he got his face mangled by Zoom). He now serves with the JSA as their resident blower upper.



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