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Superman, Spider-Man, X-men, Batman... They are in spotlight - extremely famous superheroes that kick a**s ! But, behind them stand a group of heroes that fight crime out of the spotlight...and for good reason. These are superheroes who do their job quite well, but they are somehow... I don't know, they simply sucks. Any more suggestions?
After being abducted while test piloting a military rocket, Chuck Chandler found himself between a Skrull and a hard place, causing him to shift into a two dimensional plane. With the help of his crippled brother and pair of seemingly magical sunglasses, Chuck returned to earth - now sporting a red and green jumpsuit, super strength and a zest for fighting crime. That's great and all, but James Cameron would have a sh*t fit if he knew 3-D man was utilizing anachromatic stereoscopic techniques. C'mon 3-D man, it's 2011 - we've gone polarized!
It's one thing to be the Canadian knock-off of Captain America...but it's another thing to be the lesser of two Canadian knock-offs of Captain America. Often confused for Alpha Flight's leader Guardian (and rightfully so - both of their costumes are based on the Canadian flag), Captain Canuck bounced from the future and present day, fighting Canadian crime whenever needed. He might be goofy, but while Alpha Flight is off fighting the big Canadian battles, Canuck was sweeping up biker gangs and border-crossing arms dealers, allowing Canadians to feel safe and never stoop to locking their front doors.
There's something wrong with the world when the only black superheroes Hollywood can help get to the screen are Blade (who sticks to shredding vampires to bits) and Meteor Man who helps prevent neighborhood gang violence. Nope, no narrow-mindedness there. Meteor Man has every power a mild-mannered guy could ask for (super strength, x-ray vision, healing powers,...the ability to talk to dogs), but it's like seeing your dorky high school English teacher strap on hockey pads and fight crime. Helpful, but you'd be sitting alone in the cafeteria if anyone caught you cheering.
They're like Superman! Except they crap on the floor and lick themselves clean. Krypto the Dog and Beppo the Monkey were from Krypton. Streaky the Super-Cat was genetically altered by a piece of kryptonite. Comet the Horse came from the future. All of them remind us that you should never send your pet to do a man's job. Mainly, save the world from impending destruction.
Lightray: defender of kindness and user of compromise. Yes, because shaking hands and exchanging kind words always works when tackling the thugs of Apokolips. The happy-go-lucky New God's pacifist techniques never stood much of a chance in the superheroic universe - even the Big Blue Boy Scout threw a rage-filled punch once in a while - which is probably why he ended up slammed into the pavement, consoled by Jimmy Olsen (surprised?) as he slowly faded out. We feel his pain.
As her name implies, Squirrel Girl fights evil-doers with a combination of squirrel-like attributes (giant tail! giant incisors! giant nuts!) and a crack team of agile squirrels. Remarkably, she's taken down some of the biggest baddies in the comics world, including Mandarin, Deadpool, Ego the Living Planet and Doctor Doom. But standing in her way of greatness will always be one thing: squirrels. Never pick a fluffy rodent in an attempt to strike fear in the hearts of men.
One part Punisher, one part TMNT's Casey Jones and one part Lee Harvey Oswald, Wld Dog is a pissy ex-Marine who took to the streets for revenge. The vigilante dresses like your potato chip-eating, couch-potato brother that never left home, but with a drive for gunning down domestic terrorists or electrifying them with his "shock gloves." Perhaps his methods are a little harsh - OK, they're really frickin' harsh - but we see it as getting the job done. Messy, but done.
Henry Pym should sue Jack Jameson for copyright infringement. When J. Jonah's grandson fell into a military armor experiment gone wrong (don't they all?) the young newspaper heir donned the Wasp-looking armor and patrolled the streets of New York as The Buzz. Unfortunately, with a 1,000,000,000 other superheroes already running amok in the city, the last thing anyone needed was another masked hero (and without powers - for shame!), leaving Jack all but swatted.
Never base your comic book character creations on present day technology. Like U.S. Archer, they will fade slowly (and painfully) out of existence. Archer, star of the Marvel book US-1, was born of the CB Radio craze, becoming the Convoy of comic books. He had a metal plate in his head that allowed him to pick up CB signals, which helped him defeat such enemies as "Highwayman." We assume that during the recent Civil War arc, Archer was living in a carboard box on the streets begging for quarters, desperately awaiting another radio transmission...
The last two decades weren't kind to Vibe. Paco Ramone was lucky to be born during the '80s, where his ability to emit rockin' good vibrations and his knack for breakdancing helped the Justice League out of some sticky situations. When the '90s hit (and his look never evolved), Vibe and his vinyl threads took a backseat to the evergreen swagger of his teammates. Perhaps one day, when the '80s make a comeback, so will Vibe. But more likely are Vibe's reoccurring cameos as "oh right, that guy" in the background of wide panels, such as his recent undead appearance in Blackest Night.
Only one issue of Skateman was ever published, but it was a really really really good issue. As you can imagine, the adventures of a former Vietnam vet/martial artist who finds a future in the roller derby and later decides to fight crime with a scarf wrapped around his head was the illustrated equivalent of Shakespeare. Just kidding. Never read Skateman - but appreciate someone's risk to make roller skating cool.