Vaughan & Chiang's "Paper Girls" Builds a Familiar Yet Disconcerting World
Every day this month will have the five goofiest moment from a five-issue stretch of a particular comic book run. Once a week it will be the ten goofiest moments of a ten-issue stretch. Here is a list of the moments featured so far.
Today we’re looking at the first five issues of Astonishing Tales, specifically the Doctor Doom feature, written by Roy Thomas (#1-2) and Larry Leiber (#3-5) and penciled by Wally Wood (#1-4) and George Tuska (#5), with inks by Wood (#1-4) and Mike Esposito (#5).
As always, this is all in good fun. I don’t mean any of this as a serious criticism of the comics in question. Great comics often have goofy moments (Kirby/Lee’s Fantastic Four is one of the best comic book runs of all-time and there were TONS of goofy stuff in those 100 plus issues!).
The delightful point where goofy meets awesome…
That’s where you get stuff like Cadavus, monarch of the murder chair!!!
Oh, is THAT how it works?
So, in #1, Doom is working on this android based on his brain patterns (sort of like the Vision), but his work is interrupted and the android escapes. Doom’s rival, the Faceless One (who keeps trying to conquer Latveria), catches up to the Doomsman (as they began calling the creature) and tries to set him against Doom at the end of #2…
but in #3, we learn that if two people tell you to do contrary things, that breaks all your programming!
Sure, why not?
5. Yeah, Doom is just a dick.
In #1, with GORGEOUS Wally Wood art, we see Doctor Doom do nothing more than just being a dick to NASA…
4. Doom’s version of Bat-Shark Repellent…
So in #3, now that the Doomsman is free, things look bad for Doom and the Faceless One, but Doom loves to pull things out of thin air just when needed. In this instants, mind fusion!
I just love how non-chalant Doom is about it. “Duh, mind fusion.” Doom is sort of like Charlie Sheen.
3. “Ted, you take Havana!”
That quote is from Mystery Science Theater making fun of the movie, Red Zone Cuba, where a tiny team of soldiers tries to invade Cuba (in a twist on the actual Bay of Pigs fiasco).
In #4, we see a variation of that theme. The Red Skull meets back up with the Exiles, a group of old Nazi agents who served the Red Skull during the Silver Age (Ed Brubaker has brought a bunch of them back in recent years)…
The seven of them decide that they will, just the seven of them, invade Latveria…
And as absurd as that might sound, by the end of #4…
2. How can I stop him? How? Oh yeah. Never mind.
In #3, Doom is worried about the Doomsman. Doom can’t do mind fusion ALL of the time. He needs to get sleep eventually. So how does he destroy him!?!
Oh yeah, that’s right, I’ll just send him to another dimension…
How is that not part of Doom’s everyday tactics? Reed just walking down the street and WHAMMO another dimension.
1. Of course, it is so obvious, how could we not have seen it sooner!
In #5, there is a sentence I’d like you to finish.
“That rocket – it carries the one weapon I’ve no defense for…”
There are so many different answers that I personally could accept. I think I would even accept “true love.”
However, I don’t think you’d ever predict the actual answer…
I love that Doom can travel in outer space, but he can’t handle chemi-sleep gas.
I desperately need some writer to have someone stop Doom in a modern comic by using chemi-sleep gas. Maybe it could be on a test at Avengers Academy! “How do you stop Doctor Doom?” “Chemi-sleep gas.”
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