Wednesday, May 23, 2018 • Evening Edition • "*the sound you hear when PAC-MAN dies*"

Your Top DC Heroes part 28

Written by Chris Mitchell on Thursday, January 14 2010 and posted in Features
The last batch of the day...


110. Swamp Thing (24 points)

swampthing.gif"I liked him when I was a kid. I liked him more when I read Moore's run."

In the 1970's, Scientist Alec Holland, working on a secret restorative formula in the Louisiana swamps that can "make forests out of deserts" He was killed by a bomb planted by agents of the mysterious Mr. E, who wants the formula. Splashed with burning chemicals in the massive fire, Holland runs from the lab and falls into the waters of a muck-filled swamp. Some time later, a creature resembling a humanoid plant appears. This creature, called Swamp Thing, was originally conceived as Alec Holland mutated into a vegetable-like being, a "muck-encrusted mockery of a man".

Holland is eventually hunted down by the villainous Sunderland Corporation, who seek to find the secrets to his research, and kill him in a hail of bullets.

During the autopsy it is discovered that Swamp Thing's body was only superficially human, its organs little more than crude, nonfunctional, vegetable-based imitations of their human counterparts, meaning that there was no way Swamp Thing could have been human. This meant the Swamp Thing was not Alec Holland, but only thought that it was: Holland had indeed died in the fire, and the swamp vegetation had absorbed his mind, knowledge, memories, and skills and created a new sentient being that believed itself to be Alec Holland. Alec Holland would never be cured because there was nothing to cure.

It is later revealed that there have been dozens, perhaps even hundreds of Swamp Things throughout the time of man and that all versions of Swamp Thing were created for the purpose of being the "defenders" of the Parliament of Trees, an elemental community also known as "The Green" that represents all plant life on Earth which includes the original Swamp Thing Alex Olson.

The Swamp Thing has a romantic relationship with Abigail Arcane, the niece of his nemesis Anton Arcane.

109. Cosmic Boy (24 points)

cosmicboy.jpgIn the Future…

The residents of the planet Braal all had a natural ability to control magnetism. The Krinn’s were just a typical migrant family from the planet Braal. Mom, Dad, kid brother Pol and Rokk the teen. Rokk excelled at the game Magno-Ball but that didn’t stop his parents from sending him off planet to Earth to find some work to help the family out.

On board the ship for Earth, Rokk is alerted to an assassination plot against RJ Brande. With two fellow teen travelers, they thwart the plan and in recognition of their heroism Brande asked them to continue together as a team. The Legion of Super-Heroes is formed with the newly named Cosmic Boy a founder and first leader.

The Legion under his tenure would grow from three to eighteen.

Rokk’s natural talents, both powered, physical and belief in what the Legion is all about made him one of the most respected Legionnaires of them all. Lydda Jath, the hero called Night Girl had a major crush on Rokk and tried out for the Legion just to be with him. She was rejected by the Legion but in time accepted by Rokk. The two developed a lasting relationship.

Even when not Legion Leader, Rokk carried a leadership quality about him, He presided over most of the Legion elections and always took part in any Legion Constitution changes. Rokk is also a history buff, especially the 20th/21st Century and the heroic age of Earth (while Braalian Rokk was actually born on Earth).

Rokk’s family suffered tragedy when the neighborhood they lived in was firebombed. Rokk’s mother was killed and his father gravely injured. Rokk’s little brother Pol also was caught in the explosion but Rokk was proud to see him turn tragedy to triumph as Pol applied for the Legion Academy following in big brother’s footsteps.

With his best friends and fellow founding members, Lightning Lad and Saturn Girl happily wed and his little brother excelling and eventually offered membership in the LSH; Rokk stepped away from most of Legion duties and took time off to travel with Lydda.

As with his storied life tho, the Legion was never far away. He would assist from time to time before joining backing full force (with wife Lydda as a member at long last as well).

Rokk currently has taken on the role as Legion diplomat with Lightning Lad and Saturn Girl as they try to re-establish the Legion power and reputation after the xenophobic fervor that swept the galaxy.

108. Rorschach (24 points)

rorschach.jpgWalter Joseph Kovacs was born March 21, 1940 in an unknown city. His parents split when he was very young, and he grew up with his mother, a drug-addicted prostitute. He would constantly walk in on her jobs, believing she was being hurt. She would beat him whenever he did this. When he was ten, he was attacked by two bullies, who called him whoreson, shoved a half eaten fruit into his face, and told him that he would make them appointments with his mother. He lashed out at the boys, shoving one of the bully’s cigarettes into said bully’s eye. He proceeded to tackle the other boy tearing at his cheek with his teeth, and pulling his hair and mouth. He was pulled off of the boy by passing pedestrians. After this incident, he was sent to Lillian Charlton Home for Problem Children located in New Jersey (homage to Charlton comics). At the school he excelled in religious education and literature, and was a natural athlete, excelling in boxing and gymnastics. During his time there, he wrote an essay commending Truman on his bombing of Hiroshima and Nagasaki, believing that it was a necessary sacrifice that saved millions of lives. This is ironic, due to the fact that he reacts the exact opposite way at the end of the graphic novel.

It was while he was in high school that he learned of his mother's death, a force-feeding of Drano from her pimp. His one word reply to the event: "Good." He was sixteen.

The same year as his mother’s murder, he dropped out of school. He took a job as a garment worker. Here his phobia of working with women, or anything relating to women began to take affect. This was caused by his being beaten by his mother whenever he saw her doing sexual activities. When working at the factory, a women ordered a dress, made of fabric, developed by Dr. Manhattan that consisted of two liquids, black and white, which were constantly shifting in response to heat and pressure making images like a Rorschach test. The women did not like the dress, but Walter grew to love the fabric. When he was 18, Kitty Genovese (a real life figure) was brutally murdered while people looked on from their tenants.

No one responded to her screams. Kovacs was certain that Kitty was the women who ordered the dress, and this spurred Kovac to the belief that he needed to personally avenge her and many others like her, the victims of crime. He made her dress into a mask, while still keeping the moving patterns. As a result, his mask has a constantly changing pattern on it which terrifies those to whom he speaks. This also emphasized his low, emotionless voice.

Later on, in 1965, he would team up with Nite Owl, another superhero who used many technical gadgets. Together the two fought against organized crime, bringing down Jimmy The Gimmick, Big Figure, Underboss, and Twilight Lady. One year after teaming up with Nite Owl, the team was invited to a meeting by Captain Metropolis. He tried to create a new team called the Crimebusters. It was here that Kovac met The Comedian. Everything fell apart and Kovacs left with Nite Owl. At some point, Nite Owl and Kovacs went their separate ways.

In 1975, a young girl named Blaire Roche, believing that she was connected to the Roche chemical company, a family worth a fortune. The kidnappers were erring, kidnapping the daughter of a bus driver instead. Rorschach heard of the Kidnapping, and after days of waiting without word from the kidnappers, he began imagining her abused, scared, and scarred for the rest of her life. He remembered his childhood, and decided to offer up his services to the parents, promising them he would return her unharmed. 
Rorschach went to the underworld, visiting bars and roughing up the drinkers. He put fourteen of them in the hospital, but the fifteenth one told him that a man named Gerald Grice had kidnapped the girl, and to check a disused dressmaker somewhere in Brooklyn. Rorschach described it as a “Bad neighborhood''. Smelled of dam plaster and stained mattresses.” Rorschach arrived at the shop around dusk, and the building had no lights in it. In the back of the warehouse where two German Shepherds were fighting over a bone. Rorschach avoided the rear entrance, avoiding the two attack dogs. Rorschach entered the building from the front door, commencing a search for the girl. When looking in a furnace for clues, he discovered a little girl’s underwear. Commencing the search, he discovered a meat cleaver and a recently used cutting board.

Looking outside at the fighting attack dogs, he discovered, to his horror, that the bone they were fighting over was a human femur. In a fit of rage, he took the meat cleaver and walked outside. He described the event with “It was Kovacs who said ‘Mother’ then, muffled under the latex. It was Kovacs who closed his eyes. It was Rorschach who opened them again.”

At ten forty-five, the man returned to the store, calling to the two German Shepherds, Fred and Barney, trying to get them to bark. He brushed off their silence, and entered the store. As he passed by a window, the dead body of one of the dogs came busting through the window in front of him. He backed away in fright, shouting that he hadn’t done anything. Suddenly, the other dog was thrown through the door window, hitting the man in the back and knocking him down. Rorschach then walked silently through the door, lifting the man up, forcing him against a pipe, and handcuffing him to the pipe. He then put a saw in front of the man before picking up a gas canister and spreading its contents around the room, all the while in silence. He then took out a box of matches, telling the man “Shouldn’t bother trying to saw through handcuffs. Never make it in time,” implying that the man had to saw through his arm to escape. He then lit the match, dropping it into the kerosene. The man did not make it out, and Walter Kovac ceased to exist, and Rorschach was born.


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