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Your Top Modern Characters part 79

Written by Chris Mitchell on Monday, April 06 2009 and posted in Features
Top List
The last four before the Top 100. Who will make the cut and who will not?



ezekielstane.jpg104. Ezekiel Stane (33 points)

Year first appeared: 2008

Ezekiel Stane first appeared in Matt Fraction's The Order #8 dated April 2008, where he was penciled by Barry Kitson. Within this critically acclaimed but short-lived comic book, Stane was revealed to be the behind-the-scenes manipulator pulling the strings of other villains, including Black Dahlias, Maul and M.A.N. from S.H.A.D.O.W. Androids, who have set out to destroy The Order. The Order being Tony Stark's showcase Initiative team of California, Ezekiel targets them as the first part of his revenge on Tony Stark for the death of his father.

In the final issue of The Order, #10, Stane meets Iron Man face-to-face for the first time. Due to Stane's life off the grid, Iron Man fails to realize who he is, and despite Tony Stark's resources as Director of S.H.I.E.L.D., Stane leaves California and prepares for the next stage in his vendetta against Stark.

Fraction would follow The Order with a new monthly on-going Invincible Iron Man title, with Ezekiel Stane appearing in its first story arc "The Five Nightmares" to further his vendetta against Tony Stark. Ezekiel Stane is first seen attending a meeting with the Board of Directors of a big tobacco company who had hired him to tweak their tobacco to produce a higher basal metabolic rate in the people that smoked it. Stane says he succeeded in doing it, but reveals he only took the job to use the tobacco company’s money to create bio-upgrades for himself, upgrading his own hypothalamus to utilize energy within the body which Stane swiftly uses to execute the board of directors with energy blasts from his finger tips. Stane is later updated by his girlfriend/assistant, Sasha, on his upgraded African suicide bombers who were the test subjects of Stane's biotechnology.

Stane ultimately confronts Stark with his own unique armor, while also using terrorists armed with his technology to attack sites around the world. However, Stark defeats Stane's plan with his control of all of his various Iron Man armors. Stark then disables both of their armors with a massive electromagnetic pulse and defeats the younger man in hand-to-hand combat. Stark delivers the final emotional blow to the defeated Stane by telling him that his father was "smarter than Ezekiel. And harder to beat." However, Stark is left disturbed by Stane's attack, particularly with the notion of what he may have to become in order to face the future Stane represents.


seaguy.jpg103. Seaguy (34 points)

Year first appeared: 2004

"A powerless slacker "superhero" who never does anything super. It's by Grant Morrison, so expect weirdness galore."

Seaguy is a super-hero who has never really had an adventure and spends his days in New Venice playing chess with Death, watching Mickey Eye (a cartoon show about an all-seeing, all-knowing, psychopathic eye, and an obvious spoof on Mickey Mouse) and going to the Mickey Eye amusement park. He constantly expresses his wish to go on adventures and impress a beautiful bearded warrior woman named She-Beard but he never seems to get around to it because he's told the world doesn't need heroes anymore. However, when Seaguy and Chubby discover that a new food staple called Xoo is sentient, they decide to protect it from evil forces and bring it home.

Seaguy exists in a seemingly perfect world in which all the super-heroes no longer save lives or do much of everything except ride the rides at the Mickey Eye amusement park. It is public knowledge that all the evil in the world was finally destroyed after a powerful entity called the Anti-Dad was destroyed by all the super-heroes, effectively leaving the heroes without jobs. The style of the book is equal parts dark tragedy and light-hearted whimsy as the main character travels from one adventure to the other, but with each adventure becoming more tragic than the one before it, until Seaguy discovers the secret history of the moon.

The first sequel, Seaguy: The Slaves of Mickey Eye has been released on April 1, 2009 by DC Comics/Vertigo.


flycatcher.gif102. Flycatcher (34 points)

Year first appeared: 2002

"Straight out of left field the lowly janitor of Fabletown has gone through a lot. Hearing his numbingly sad history in 1001 nights brought me to tears. Seeing him become a star and a major player in the fables universe has been a better underdog story than Rudy"

Flycatcher was a happily married prince of a small kingdom in the Homelands, with a beautiful wife and many children. He lived peacefully with his family, his only quirk being the occasional resumption of his frog curse when he was nervous, scared or especially excited. Fortunately it only took a kiss from his loving wife to return him to human form, and, as time went on, he would often go for years between instances of the curse asserting itself. His tranquil family life was shattered when the Adversary invaded his realm. Fly geared up in order to fight, unaware that the enemy troops had already invaded his castle. As he bid farewell to his family, enemy soldiers burst into the room, causing Fly's curse to manifest immediately. Trapped in his frog form, he could only watch helplessly as his younger children were murdered immediately and his wife and eldest daughter repeatedly raped before being killed herself. How Fly returned to his human form is unknown - it is speculated that he took a last kiss from his dead wife. Unable to face the truth, Fly wandered as a beggar, asking everywhere he went if people had seen his family. Finally he learned of the sanctuary of the mundane world and, figuring that his family would have fled there, he traveled there as well. He still wonders what happened to them and has asked one of the magic mirrors retrieved from the Homelands to search for them on his behalf. Some of his fellow Fables are aware of the true situation, but conspire to keep the truth from him, knowing that it would destroy him. When drunk, Fly appears to have a greater awareness of what really happened to them, which is believed to be the reason why he rarely drinks.

Flycatcher acted as the janitor for the Woodland building, the center of government for Fabletown. Fly was not employed in the traditional sense, since the nature of his history is such that, if he has a job that he could choose to quit, he would have to do so and return to the Homelands to seek his missing family. As this would almost certainly result in his death, Bigby Wolf developed a system whereby Fly is working off a never-ending series of community service orders for a series of minor infractions, usually eating flies. As such, Fly can remain in the job that he enjoys doing and where he feels important. This arrangement was nearly disrupted by the well-meaning Beast, who intended to employ Fly legitimately, before Rose Red put him straight on the real nature of the situation.

Fly has been spending a considerable amount of time with Red Riding Hood, having been asked to look after her by Boy Blue before the latter departed for the Farm. She accompanied him to Bigby and Snow White's wedding. Fly, however, seemed oblivious to the fact that Red was falling for him, something that he only appeared to realize when she went on an expedition out into the mundane city, where she had a makeover with him in mind. He was shocked when he saw her and ran away, hiding in the depths of the business office. His curse then manifested, reverting Fly to his frog form.

Eventually, Santa Claus visited Flycatcher and forced him to reveal that he can speak, and also that he remembers what happened to his family. Santa then brought the ghost of Fly's wife so she could restore him to his human form. Santa explained that Fly is destined to play a crucial part in future events, but only if he can learn to accept the past and move on.

Tall and decidedly gangly, Fly is almost universally popular in Fabletown, being kind and friendly (if not exceptionally bright), to the extent that Snow and Bigby name one of their children Ambrose in his honor. Although still searching for his family, he has developed something of a crush on Briar Rose, to the extent that his kiss was enough to wake her from her curse.

Fables artist Mark Buckingham has stated that Flycatcher is his favorite character; Buckingham has said that he is the only truly innocent character in the series. This has since been backed up in the series itself, in which it has been noted that Flycatcher was the only Fable to reach the mundane world who had nothing to be forgiven, covered up, or otherwise absolved of, under the Fabletown amnesty.


thegovernor.jpg101. The Governor (34 points)

Year first appeared: 2006

"Long have I thought of zombie apocalypse scenarios, and never could I have imagined a threat as twisted as the Governor. I look forward to the day that Kirkman takes a flashback, which shows just how a character can get this powerful and this crazy. Absolutely fascinating and horrifying."

"The living proof that the human being is the worst monster you could face."

The Governor is the man in charge of the little but very well fortified town of Woodbury, Georgia, where are large group of survivors are gathered. They were discovered by Rick, Glenn and Michonne who were following the trails of a crashed helicopter. But for their horror, the group found out that the Governor was using living human beings to feed the zombies in a twisted mix of perversion and sport for the locals. Furthermore, the Governor tried to force Rick to reveal the location of the prison and due to his negative, he cut off Rick's hands, locked Glenn down, and raped Michonne.

Ironically, the locals love the Governor because the protection and safety he and his group brings. It was later discovered that the Governor keeps a macabre secret. He not only hides in his house his zombified daughter, but also uses the heads of his victims for his own disturbed pleasure.

When Martinez helped Rick, Glenn and Michonne to escape, Michonne decided to stay a little longer to pay the Governor a visit. After a vicious fight between them, Michonne got her revenge but torturing and mutilating him. But the arrival of the Governor's men stopped Michonne from putting and end to his life. This later would become a huge mistake when the Governor led a full attack against the prison, when he convinced the folks from Woodbury that Rick and his friends were completely evil.

Nevertheless, things for the Governor didn't go the way he planned as the people from the prison put a tenacious defense that forced the people from Woodbury to a humiliating retreat. But Michonne and Tyreese made a huge mistake following the trails of the Governor. Tyreese gets caught and Phillip used him as bait. He threatened to execute Tyreese if Rick wouldn't open the prison doors. But they refuse to do so, and the Governor beheaded Tyreese. When he returned to his camp, Michonne was very much alive and once again tried to kill him. The Governor saved his life and completely enraged, he led a brutal and final assault to the prison.

This time, he was taking no hostages. He crushed the prison defenses, killing Axel in the process and to obliterate any further attempt to fight back, he ordered the tank to drive trough the fences. The prison was lost for Rick and his friends, but the Governor stopped their escape route. The people from Woodbury began the massacre following the Governor's orders. They killed Patricia, Billy and Hershel Greene and Lori Grimes and her newborn baby, Judy.

But the rejoice of victory was short-lived for the Governor. Lilly, one of the survivors from Woodbury just couldn't stand any more the horror of the massacre when she realized that for following Phillip's orders, she had murdered a baby. The Governor tried to calm his people once more, but this time, Lilly put a bullet through his head, ending his life and the brutal assault.




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