Sunday, May 20, 2018 • Morning Edition • "Bring your own straight jacket."

Your Top Marvel Heroes part 16

Written by Chris Mitchell on Wednesday, April 14 2010 and posted in Features
Three more. Enjoy. {nomultithumb}

187. Bengal (12 points)

The boy who would one day grow up to be Bengal watched his village and parents in the central highlands near Bang Me Thuot killed by American GI's during the Vietnam War. American soldiers including Talltrees, Brasel, Janes and Fong were good at killing and didn't leave anything breathing in that village except Duc No Tranh who witnessed the massacre behind a hut. Duc jumped onto the runner of the dustoff chopper during an evac but was kicked in the face by Private Janes. Duc fell from the chopper and landed back into the jungle where he vowed revenge for his village and family. Duc became the Bengal and began to murder some of the soldiers that participated in the slaughter. Bengal would come into conflict with Daredevil as he tried to protect one of the veterans named Willie Lincoln. The two masked men would clash in Central Park and Daredevil was able to best Bengal in combat after breaking his left wrist and disarming his sais. Daredevil carried Bengal to Lincoln's apartment and placed him on the couch. Duc woke up and jumped out of the window after seeing Lincoln's face.

Bengal would come into conflict with Silhouette and Night Thrasher after he attempts to kill a priest named Father Janes. Janes was one of the soldiers that massacred Duc's family and village in Vietnam. Janes was court-martialed and found guilty so he was sentenced to twenty-five years in Quantico. Janes found God and was paroled after fourteen years in prison. Janes dedicated his life to help the underprivileged but realized he was damned forever after turning that young boy into a killer. Thrasher decided to lure the Bengal out by keeping Father Janes in his apartment. The two warriors fought outside Dwayne's apartment until the Punisher intervened and stopped the fight. Father Janes apologized to Duc for what happened and the two embraced with tears flowing down their face.

Bengal has recently joined the Initiative and is in training at Camp Hammond. He was even selected as part of the first Shadow Initiative. The Shadow Initiative was a secret black ops team that consisted of Bengal, Trauma, Mutant Zero, Constrictor and the Scarlet Spiders. This team would take on special assignments and only follow the orders of Henry Gyrich. One of their first assignments was to retrieve the young cadets of the Initiative that broke ranks and went into the battle zone against the Hulk and the rest of his Warbound. Bengal and the rest of the Shadow Initiative act as Gyrich's personal bodyguards and they would come to his aid when the fifth clone of MVP takes control of an omega class weapon called the Tactigon to become KIA. Bengal is very protective of his wife and young son. One of his greatest fears is the possibility of his family getting killed by his enemies. Duc tells his family to hide and lay low when they discover that the Skrulls have invaded the Initiative. Bengal and his teammates attempt to assassinate the Skrull queen to possibly end the invasion but they end up killing a Skrull posing as the queen.

Members of the Initiative including Bengal would fight Ragnarok, the clone of Thor when it was activated. The Shadow Initiative was no longer covert ops and consisted of Initiative members deemed expendable. This group was the first wave of Initiative members to assault a prison in the Negative Zone called 42 after it was taken over by Blastaar and his army. This group acted as cannon fodder to soften up Blastaar's forces before sending in the big boys to clean up. Bengal would survive the assault and continue to serve with the Shadow Initiative.

Bengal and the rest of the Shadow Initiative were confined to their quarters when the Avengers Resistance raided Camp H.A.M.M.E.R. and fought the Hood and his crew. The Hood would use the Norn Stones to upgrade the powers of his crew and things started to look bad for the Resistance. Penance took down two guards and broke out of his quarters. Bengal, Butterball and Batwing heard the commotion and Penance asked them to come with him if they were sick of being used as cannon fodder. The tables were turning against the Resistance until reinforcements arrived with Bengal and the rest of his friends. Bengal threw a sai at the Hood with his resignation papers attached to it. They quit the Initiative and Penance removed his helmet to reveal himself as Robbie Baldwin to the rest of the Resistance. Bengal joined the fray and took down Ringer with a left uppercut. The Hood received a distress signal and was forced to leave with his Brooklyn crew. Bengal and the rest of the Resistance took down the foes that were left behind.

186. Elsa Bloodstone (12 points)

Elsa was born from Ulysses and Elise Bloodstone. Ulysses distanced himself from Elise and so she moved to England with her baby. Elsa grew up without knowing anything about her father, and her mother made sure she did not find out about his monster hunting career. Before Ulysses died, he entrusted Adam (a Frankenstein-like being that works as Ulysses' handyman) to give Elsa his Bloodgem choker. Elsa began having dreams about monsters and vampires, when they found out about Ulysses' death they flew out to his estate in Boston.

They arrived at the Bloodstone estate and are given a tour by Charles Barnabas (secretly a good pure blood vampire), who is the lawyer and executor of the estate. Elsa would later explore the estate against her mother's wishes to find a hidden chamber. There Adam would explain Elsa's legacy and heritage to her and give her the choker. A genie lamp in the chamber starts flashing and Elsa rubs it. She is then transported to Bosnia right in front of Dracula who is seemingly being pursued by some sort of special-ops soldiers. Dracula recognizes the Bloodgem and starts to close in on Elsa. The Bloodgem blasts Dracula away and Dracula was staked and caught by the soldiers, who it would later be revealed were servants of Nosferatu (another vampire). Adam arrives and brings Elsa back to the estate.

Elsa accepts the mantle her father left for her and so Elsa turns into a monster hunter, but she has to keep it a secret from her mother. Adam designs a costume for Elsa tailored like her fathers (and seemingly to maximize upon her already impressive cleavage, much to Adam's delight). The lamp would flash and Elsa and Adam begin another mission. This time the lamp teleports them to Egypt where they meet N'Kantu, the Living Mummy. They enter the pyramid to stop whatever is happening, leaving N'Kantu behind to keep guard, and giving N'Kantu the gifts of modern slang. Elsa and Adam would soon figure out that Nosferatu had Dracula captured and was trying to become powerful by sacrificing Dracula and other powerful "pure blood" vampires including their own Barnabas.. Elsa would confront Nosferatu and battle him, Nosferatu was able to bite Elsa on the neck. But the Bloodgem energy in her blood hurt him and so while Nosferatu was reeling from the pain, Dracula and Adam open a hatch in the roof to expose Nosferatu to sun light, killing him.

Elsa now lives in the Bloodstone estate with her mother and Adam. They also befriend Charles Barnabas who would help her on missions. Elsa began blogging about the monsters she has hunted and made an encyclopedia about all the monsters she killed in the Marvel Universe. Her first series of adventures ends with them setting out to combat a kraken.

Elsa would later join Nextwave and in this series she claims that she comes from a long line of near immortal monster hunters (in another Nextwave issue, she says she is "second in a long line" of monster hunters stretching back thousands of years; i.e., her dad and herself). When she talks about her past in Nextwave, it differs radically from the Bloodstone comics. In Nextwave she claims that she was trained by her father when she was young, such as dropping her into a pit with a monster as a toddler armed only with a spoon, and that when her parents were absent she was trained by a robot/torture device called "Hate Mother". It has been noted by the writer that they know her past differs a little bit and was used for the comedy of Nextwave. ''Civil War: Damage Report'' states that the memories and personalities of Nextwave members were altered by H.A.T.E. Elsa seems to have a strong report with Nextwave teammate The Captain, though whether this is just a friendly bond or anything more is open to interpretation.

Sometimes later, Elsa gets together with her teammate Boom Boom and they talk about their love lives and the men they have dated leading to an encounter with one of Elsa's ex-boyfriends, Franken's Teen, who Boom Boom blows to pieces.

185. Squirrel Girl (21 points)

"She beat Doom."

Fuck you.

Doom beat your mom.

Squirrel Girl started her career at age 14 trying to be sidekick to Iron Man with her pet squirrel Monkey Joe. After politely declining her offer, Iron Man and Squirrel Girl were captured by Doctor Doom . However Doom would become the first villain (out of many) defeated by her for underestimating her power.

Squirrel Girl was next seen joining the Great Lakes Avengers after saving them from muggers, witnessing Grasshopper die, and defeating Maelstrom. Monkey Joe was soon killed by rejected GLA member Leather Boy in a Doctor Doom suit. She was soon partnered with Tippy Toe, her new squirrel sidekick. She was able to defeat Thanos, Terrax, and M.O.D.O.K and was offered a position at S.H.I.E.L.D. because of the number of villains she has beaten but declined.

She is one of the few mutants retaining their powers after M-Day. Squirrel Girl has a big crush on Speedball aka Penance and tried to get him to change back to his old ways even going so far as using a time machine in Latveria that belongs to Doctor Doom, to go to the past but accidentally goes to the future. After meeting an alternate Speedball and Mr. Immortal she is told she has things to do in the past mainly kicking Deadpool out the group.

Squirrel Girl has many squirrel-like powers. She has superhuman strength and agility, allowing her to leap several stories, as well as an enhanced sense of smell. She also has 2-3 inch retractable knuckle spikes that can slice wood, in addition to sharp claws on each digit that can be used for climbing. Squirrel Girl has buck teeth that can chew wood, and a 3-4 feet long prehensile tail. She also has powers allowing her to work with squirrels, beyond the abilities of normal training. She can speak and understand squirrel's language and they seem to be able to understand her speaking English. This is often the means for which she defeats her more powerful enemies as she can summon large armies of squirrels for help. Her eyes glow in low light so it is possible that Squirrel Girl may have supervision.


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