iFanboy Video Podcast

iFanboy – Episode #187 – Superheroes Gone Bad

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With all these stories of superheroes being the shining beacon of light in the dark, and fighting for truth, justice, and the American way, it's about time for some alternate takes on the common superhero theme.  Luckily, in the last couple years, there have been some very good comics about what happens when those with great power kick great responsibility to the curb.

A God Somewhere, an original graphic novel written by John Arcudi, with art by Peter Snejbjerg tells the story of what happens when a man is imbued with incredible powers, and just loses his marbles.  It's a cynical view to be sure, but one that's not unbelievable an example of what might happen if someone who's not in the best mental place ended up super strong with the ability to fly.

The Mighty, a 12 issue mini-series, focuses on Alpha One, the greatest hero the world knows, and the organization that has sprung up behind him, and how he always shows up outside your window when you don't expect it.  Plus a ton of other creepy stuff guys with broad shoulders and the ability to fly might do with enough rope.  The story, by Peter J. Tomasi and Keith Champagne, is complimented by wonderful, moody artwork by Peter Snejbjerg (also), and Chris Samnee.

Irredeemable sprung from the mind of superstar writer, Mark Waid and BOOM! Studios, and the ongoing series explores the question, "What if Superman was dangerously unhinged, and just wrecked the bejeezus out of the world?"  Peter Krause provides art for the story of the Plutonian, and the world he wrecked in a fit of psychotic, superpowered rage.  Why no one took a hint that the guy had his HQ in a volcano as a bad sign, we'll never know.

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Comments

  1. jackietam jackietam says:

    Well, that was an interesting ending.

  2. WheelHands WheelHands says:

    Interesting topic. I’ve always enjoyed the way these types of stories can turn the capes-and-tights genre on it’s head. They hold up a mirror to the fans of superheroes, making us pause. They force us to step out of our usual bright and shining fantasy world of good vs. evil and think, "Whoah. Our world would definitely not benefit from superpowers." What’s ironic (and kind of depressing) is that every one of these stories is probably a more accurate description of what would actually happen if these things were real. 

    I’m kind of embarassed to admit I haven’t read any of the books featured here. I’m definitely gonna have to check out The Mighty (love me some Tomasi and Samnee), and myabe I’ll even give Irredeemable a shot.

    Good episode. Thanks guys.

  3. stuclach stuclach says:

    Loved The Mighty and have enjoyed Irredeemable.  This should be a fun show.

  4. ericmci ericmci says:

    Ha- what was issue 12 of The Mighty again now?

  5. excalipoor excalipoor says:

    I like this episode. It took me awhile to warm up to the idea of getting the irredeemable book. I definitely like that book. I don’t know if I can see that book can go on for so long. Eventually, people just want to see Plutonian get destroyed. I think it’s almost there. I wonder if an episode on bad guys turn good can happen.

  6. s1lentslayer s1lentslayer says:

    The Mighty and Irredeemable are amazing. They both have lots of WTF moments in them.

  7. I remember really, really wanting to read The Mighty, but having no interest in Irredeemable. Then, on a whim, I picked up the first Irredeemable trade and now it’s one of my favourite series. I have still yet to read The Mighty. C’est la vie.

  8. boosebaster boosebaster says:

    I’ve often thought that when you boil the Superman mythos down, its main theme is about good parenting. Here is a guy who could crack the earth in two, but he is the paragon of virtue, because out of everyone in the world who could have found him, he was found by Jonathan and Martha Kent and raised properly.

  9. @ron, conor & josh: There was a second trade of The Mighty. Came out about a month back.

  10. Gray Gray says:

    What, no Black Summer? Didn’t Warren Ellis start this whole thing off?

  11. Conor Kilpatrick conor (@cskilpatrick) says:

    @Gray: Wasn’t about an entire genre: it was about these three books we love.

  12. gobo gobo says:

    @ericmci I laughed out loud at Ron’s reaction when Josh said dénouement. He was like "ooooh look at mr. fancy words over here"

  13. Gray Gray says:

    @Conor: Fair enough. Do you have a comment on Black Summer? Have the three of you read it? Is it in the love pile for goodguys gone bad?

  14. "Blow me, I wanna fit it in!" – Ron

    :)

  15. Latimagic Latimagic says:

    Was SHE a great big fat person!?

  16. Goaduk Goaduk says:

    Actually thought Conor had gone for the cup then, Ron seemed unfazed??

  17. AMuldowney AMuldowney says:

    Thanks, guys!  

    A quick question: is there an ETA on the new RSS feed for the video show?  Or are you not going to use one? 

  18. Cedric Cedric says:

    I was kinda interested in Irredeemable, but still doubting. You guys won me over. Looks like I’m going to be buying some trades.

  19. gobo gobo says:
  20. edward says:

    I’ve recently been re-reading large chunks of my collection. I read a lot of irredeemable issue just last night. 

    Here’s what i noticed, every issue ends really abruptly. i’m laying in bed, reading away and then bam the issue is over

    but it’s still alright  

  21. Bryce31 Bryce31 says:

    Tomasi had another mini series called The Light Brigade that was also published by DC but out of continuity. 

  22. AMuldowney AMuldowney says:

    @gobo thanks, you’re a mensch.  

  23. Has anyone mentioned Alan Moore’s Miracle/Marvel Man yet…? If not, allow me to be the first…ahem…Miracle Man.

  24. cutty cutty says:

    Looking forward to this episode as I haven’t read any of these.  I thought Bendis did the concept very well in Powers

  25. at first I missed the ads.  there has always been a certain charm to the ads in the video show.  but with each week without them, I like an ad-free video show more and more.

    anyway, I find it funny that you guys hesitated to call this a "trend".  are there a lot of other stories with this theme?  I know some people have mentioned a few already.  are we going to soon see a slew of knockoffs, or worse, knockoffs with a slight, negligible twist.  "No, this is like Green Lantern, but gone bad."  "This book is what if Superman went bad, but was only faking it."  and on and on.

  26. Conor Kilpatrick conor (@cskilpatrick) says:

    @ABirdseysView: Enjoy them while you can, ads will be back soon enough.

  27. srh1son srh1son says:

    They’ve done a video podcast about "Miracleman".  Good stuff.

     I hope my buying of "Marvelman Family’s Finest" is helping Marvel Comics out.  Someone said they only have the rights to the original character/work, so the 80s/90s work is still in legal limbo; don’t know if that’s a nasty rumour.  Maybe they are just trying to test the waters and reintroduce the character slowly, and help Mick Anglo out by reprinting his stuff?  I definitely want omnibuses of Moore and Gaiman’s work. 

  28. Jeff Reid JeffR (@JeffRReid) says:

    Damn. After hearing you talk about THE MIGHTY again and seeing that DCBS has each volume on sale for only $10.79, I just added them both to my next order. This is on top of my normal budget. No one tell my wife.

  29. This was an awesome gang topic to cover, what with these three books on the stands at the same time. Looks like iFanboy just took care of a little advance Christmas shopping for this member.

  30. doctorsporen doctorsporen says:

    What, no Sentry? Sadface.

  31. M927 M927 says:

    This was a fine show the kind of topic, that with proper discussion, has made me want to purchase all the books discussed. It also makes me ashamed that when I once meet Samnee in St Louis I could only rave about his art in the book,  Capote in Kansas, foolish and small minded me!

  32. LEXPRIME LEXPRIME says:

    I am looking into getting the mighty since the main reason I droped ireedeamable was because it is too long. so a 12 issue story should be good for me:)…altho I have seen the trades and I am surprised at how thin these two volumes are, I cant believe they each hold 6 issues but whatever.

    I have a QUESTION for anyone who can answer it, if you have read the mighty can you tell me if there is a opposite that the alpha one fights at all?  does he have an enemy who can hurt him or he fights in the book at all or is it just the government or something. I like my stories to have a nice enemy for the main character to go up against so before I pick these trades up I just like to know if there is a enemy for alpha one?  thanks.

  33. alpha one is the enemy, that’s the point. the conflict comes between him and his number one fan (and new ‘captain’ or whatever); it’s something of an emotional rollercoaster as he essentially deals with the loss of a friend and in some ways patriach.

  34. Great show, but I was a little disappointed. When you said a show on bad heroes, I thought you were doing a show on lame heroes like Sentry. I thought that would’ve been hilarious.

  35. newway12 says:

    Why are most indie superheroes just riffs on Superman. I’ve always thought creating new powers for your Superhero was the most fun part of creating one.  

  36. Isn’t Mark Millar’s Nemesis essentially about "What if Batman went bad?" A slight variation on the usual Superman archetype.

  37. rjspring rjspring says:

    Love Irredeemable, wish Mighty would come out in one volume – but two is better than none…

  38. chelsea chelsea says:

    A God Somewhere looks/sounds amazing.

  39. diebenny diebenny says:

    Great show.  Wished more people read the Mighty in issues.  It was great.  Also love Irredeemable, and now you guys got me really interested in A God Somewhere.  I’d never even heard of it before.  Looked great though.

  40. Loser13 Loser13 says:

    it’s is my favorite show yet. i love all those books.

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