Monday, March 10, 2014

Down With The Establishment!


Name This Marvel Villain??

Gary Gilbert is something of an activist, like his sister, Roxanne--only where Roxanne struggles for peaceful solutions to problems, Gary dons the super-powered costume of Firebrand and becomes an anti-establishment, anti-capitalist terrorist:

Firebrand's outlook on money and industry of course put Tony Stark's factories on his hit list:

Which consequently put him square in the sights of Iron Man, who defeated him. Later, at a time when Stark was dealing with a string of business crises, Firebrand reappeared, striking a deal with a treacherous member of Stark's own Board:

Despite these two being at odds, Firebrand agrees to blow up Stark's factory. But, again, Iron Man is there to foil his attack. In the midst of the battle, though, the man who met with Firebrand, Simon Gilbert, attempts to complete the plan by detonating a bomb, only to be fatally caught in the blast--and Firebrand, now in custody, is doubly enraged, revealing a secret he never even disclosed to Gilbert:

Firebrand would later escape and show up on his sister Roxanne's doorstep--and, though giving him shelter, his pacifist sibling would fail to dissuade him from his revenge on Iron Man:

But Firebrand's battle with Iron Man would be as unsuccessful as the others. Unfortunately, Roxanne would also find herself in his line of fire:

Iron Man jets the critically wounded Roxanne to the hospital, while Firebrand is again taken into police custody. Firebrand would later become involved with the Black Lama in a struggle with Iron Man on an alternate, alien world, but was eventually returned to Earth, suspending his one-man war against corporate America and instead becoming something of an agent for other costumed criminals.  He would eventually meet a deadly end from the gun of the Scourge of the Underworld, as well as that of the Punisher.


Anonymous said...

I remember Gary transferring to our High School at the beginning of Senior year. Quiet guy, bit of a loner. I do remember though, during Career Day, when the teacher asked us what we wanted to do, Gary answered:

I don't want to sell anything, buy anything, or process anything as a career. I don't want to sell anything bought or processed, or buy anything sold or processed, or process anything sold, bought, or processed, or repair anything sold, bought, or processed. You know, as a career, I don't want to do that.

And I think he was into kickboxing?

The Prowler (getting so lost, sometimes days passing and this emptiness filling his heart).

Anonymous said...

Pretty hard to be Jeremiah Johnson in the 21st century.
Hell, even if you cut down trees and build your own log cabin, your rifle you use to shoot squirrels n' such was made in a factory somewhere.
Guys who attempt complete independence starve to death or get eaten by bears.

Comicsfan said...

That's quite a good point, Anon. The components for his wrist blasters probably even came from one of Stark's factories. My impression of Firebrand, though, was that his mad-on was mainly aimed at the imbalance of wealth in the country, repression, and certainly at munitions factories--all of which he arguably sees wrapped up in Iron Man.

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