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CSBG Archive

Comic Book Easter Eggs – When John Byrne Homages Someone, He REALLY Homages Them

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!).

Today we look at three, count ‘em, THREE homages to Larry Niven’s creations, the alien race known as Pierson’s Puppeteers by John Byrne.

The Puppeteers (Pierson was the human who first encountered them) have two long snake-like heads.

The great comic book artist John Byrne is a big Larry Niven fan (as well as he should be) and he paid homage to Niven by featuring the Puppeteers a number of times over the years in his comic book work.

First, in X-Men #125…

Next, in Ganthet’s Tale (made particularly special by being written BY Niven!)…

Finally, in Byrne’s Star Trek prelude mini-series starring Doctor McCoy…

Awesome stuff.

Thanks to Jim Means for starting me on this path.

If you know of any other comic book easter eggs, let me know at bcronin@comicbookresources.com


Also, don’t blink or you’ll miss Popeye in the first panel. (Terry Austin, I believe, used to put Popeye in the bg of crowd scenes and look! There he is!)

Ahh…X-Men 125, when comics were still good!!

You missed two more homages on the X-Men page. Popeye to the right of the Shi’ar lady and the Phantom Stranger right behind the Puppeteer.

Towards the end of his FF run Byrne had Reed and Sue temporarily move to the suburbs, and when they threw a neighborhood get-together the guests were all newspaper strip husbands and wives. A great Easter egg.

helps if you know what the heck a puppeteer looks like i suppose. i had to go back and look for the two headed beastie after the IDW cover…

Isn’t that blue guy on the right in X-men #125 an easter egg also? Isn’t he one of the guys from the Claremont/Byrne Star-Lord? Or am I misremembering?

Hey Brian, you missed some references that weren’t the thing you were pointing out here. WTH?

So…the Puppeteers are giant walking reversed double cocks? One eye on each, a hairy bush on the back…

Also, you missed some references that weren’t the thing you were pointing out here which have themselves been pointed out in this feature before.

Does anybody remembers Crankshaft making an appearance in the pages of JB’S NEXT MEN?
Hellboy, Concrete popped in too. Not sure if that’s really an Easter Egg.

That’s not how I pictured Puppeteers when I first read Niven.

Thanks to TAS, that Star Trek cover could happen as more than a simple homage…the Kzinti were introduced into the Trek-verse The Slaver Weapon (an adaptation of the Soft Weapon), so…the rest of the Known Space races could well be there, too.

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