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Comic Book Easter Eggs – The Three Stooges Meet Batman (and More)!

Every week, I will be sharing with you three comic book “easter eggs.” An easter egg is a joke/visual gag/in-joke that a comic book creator (typically the artist) has hidden in the pages of the comic for readers to find (just like an easter egg). They range from the not-so-obscure to the really obscure. So come check ‘em all out and enjoy! Also, click here for an archive of all the easter eggs featured so far! If you want to suggest an easter egg for a future column, e-mail me at bcronin@comicbookresources.com (do not post your suggestion in the comments section!).

This week, all the easter eggs involve the Three Stooges!

Jack H. and Chris N. both suggested the appearances of three thugs working for a crime boss that Batman deals with in Vengeance of Bane (by Chuck Dixon and Graham Nolan). They are quite stooge-like…

Scott suggested Defenders #150, by writer Peter B. Gillis and artists Don Perlin, Alan Kupperberg and Randy Emberlin. In it, the Defenders encounter a race of aliens. They aliens give them a spaceship along with a crew. The crew is intended to look like the Stooges…

Finally, PaxHouse noted the two-part Stooge reference in Power Pack by Terry Austin. First, in Power Pack #21, a popular children’s author (who Katie Power is a big fan of) is kidnapped by two thugs who are trying to force her to tell them where she hid the $100,000 promotional treasure that her book company hid based on clues in her latest book. The two thugs (who Katie and Jack try to stop dressed as characters from the authors’ books) are clearly meant to look like Larry and Moe…

Power Pack #21 is a classic. Brent Anderson did the artwork. Anderson did a marvelous job on an adorable story by Austin. I have always held a special place in my heart for Power Pack #21, although I can see the argument that it is perhaps a bit too saccharine. Whatever! I still loved it.

So over 20 issues later, Terry Austin does a sequel to #21 with a fill-in issue for #46, this time with artwork by Whilce Portacio and Mark Badger. The prize that Moe and Larry were trying to get in Power Pack #21 has been found, only there’s no money! The world believes that the author has stolen the money herself. Katie and Jack try to prove her innocence.

Jack enlists the help of Dakota North, who visits Larry and Moe in prison…

Katie has enlisted the help of the Punisher, and the two visit Shemp at his bar…

This leads to the reveal that Curly was the mastermind behind it all and that he stole the money before it was ever buried. Dakota North tries to take him down…

It does not work. Now it is the Punisher’s turn…

It does not work.

Eventually, Jack and Katie use props from #21 to essentially haunt Curly until he confesses.

Cute stuff, although I missed Brent Anderson.

Thanks for the suggestions, folks!

If anyone wants to suggest a future easter egg, feel free to e-mail me at bcronin@comicbookresources.com

16 Comments

Even with guns, the Three Stooges find themselves in all sort of hijinks and wacky situations.

Get youse butts over here? Man, comic writers use youse as poorly as they use y’all.

The Stooges got sent up as X-Men, with Moe as Wolverine, Curly as Colossus, and Larry as Nightcrawler on the cover of issue 2 of Power Plays, a brilliant but overlooked indy.

http://www.comics.org/issue/40475/cover/4/

The Stooges can be seen in panel one of this page from Marvel Premiere #48:

http://3.bp.blogspot.com/_qZK742rc1hc/SP-5MMZhVeI/AAAAAAAACZs/HXWYruze2E0/s1600-h/09.jpg

The Jean-Paul Valley Batman also fought some Stoogish villians during Knightquest. I don’t recall the exact issues off-hand (I’d have to look it up at home), but they were trying to collect the bounty on Abitoir during “Batman”‘s team up with one of the Bloodlines heroes. They were grunged-up some, but pretty obvious Stooge analogues.

Any Fake Shemps?

love how the power pack issues made curly the brains of the stooges instead of normaly moe and he even out witted of all the characters the punisher .

The Three Stooges also appeared in a later issue of G.I. Joe, I think it was the storyline where Baroness blames Snake Eyes for her brother’s death. The Stooges were dressed as Cobra Vipers.

I thought of those Knightquest issues as well; I’m pretty sure it was in Batman #507-508. They were a gang called the Maniaxe, or something similar. There was a rather odd letter a few issues later where a gang member wrote in complaining about the depiction of gang members as bumblers in those issues.

Of course the Stooges were in Cerebus too, but that series was packed with homages like that.

It’s interesting that they’re such beloved cultural icons. I never saw the appeal.

And “Curly’s” last name in the issue is Horwitz, the real last name of the Howard brothers.

There was also a scene from Marvel’s G.I. JOE #96 where Storm Shadow was climbing up the Cobra Consulate building and took out a trio of Vipers who bore an, uncanny, resemblance to the Stooges.

Folks, if Power Pack #1-#25 aren’t on your treasures list, I feel sorry for your soul.

I also like how they specify that Larry is the dim-witted friend, where Moe, Shemp, and Curly are all “brothers” .

Good Lord, that last page art is awful!!!

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