Friday, February 7, 2020

I'm Your Friend... Your Enemy... Your Friend... Enemy... Friend...


Name This Marvel Villain??

Our mystery villain is actually one of three featured in the story in which he makes his debut. And that's a guarantee, because there's a cover caption telling us so:

See? And there are two more clues here: He's reportedly one of Marvel's most sinister super-villains (up to mid-1970, that is)--and because he's counted among the most sinister, that means he's likely been around awhile. So you've got enough info to make a pretty fair guess as to his identity, yes?

Phooey. You know nothing. You've been hoodwinked again by the House of Ideas.

As for the other two, they are definitely card-carrying villains who go way back. Behind Door #1, we have:

Tyrannus, banished to Subterranea by Merlin and who vies for control of the Fountain of Youth he's discovered there. As for whom he's vying with, we can find him behind Door #2:

The Mole Man, who banished himself to Subterranea due to rejection by his fellow man. Partially blind, he possesses a "radar sense" that allows him to anticipate the movements of any attacker, which, along with the power-laden staff he carries, makes him a credible threat. (Or so he keeps telling us.)

Which leaves Door #3 for... for....

That's right, Mogol, one of Marvel's most sinister super-villains... er, in his first appearance. And you know he has to be really sinister if he already has such a rep without ever being seen. I mean, look at the fanfare this guy is getting--but does he care? No! Just make way, because it looks like Tyrannus has a job for him.

So now we know how the Hulk enters the picture. But why would the Hulk put his trust in Mogol, one of the most sinister super-villains in existence? Well, it looks like Tyrannus is already softening the Hulk up in that respect.

By the way, welcome to your new home in Subterranea, puny humans. Unfortunately, you'll be staying indefinitely--mainly because writer Roy Thomas will have forgotten about you by the time this story wraps up.

As for Mogol's meeting with the Hulk, our green goliath's memory may be spotty on a few things, but his past encounter with Tyrannus isn't one of them.

Nor does Mogol help matters, waffling between wanting to be the Hulk's friend yet declaring his intent to kill him.

Whoops, looks like he's wanting to be friends again. Then again...

...friends don't usually bludgeon you from behind after calling a truce. Make up your mind, Mogol!

The takeaway from this exchange is: Hulk, you have got to be one of the most gullible dopes ever.

As for that line of Mogol's about the Hulk being respected where they're headed, being verbally disrespected while working as part of Tyrannus' slave labor force would have had the Hulk I know dropping that machinery with a snarl and using that helmet of Tyrannus as a gong for his fist. Instead, he's now a Stepford-Hulk.

Soon enough, however, the attack is launched against the Mole Man. But there is a secret behind the reason why Mogol has no memory of his prior life--a secret that the Mole Man knows, and doesn't hesitate to exploit.

Regardless of his anger--or perhaps because of it--the Hulk nevertheless follows through on Tyrannus' command to destroy the Mole Man's fortress. But too late, Tyrannus realizes why the Hulk then suddenly leaps away, and where he's headed--back to the city of the one who brought him here.

Our humans from the surface probably have nothing good to say about Mr. Thomas right about now.

Assuming any of them are still alive.


JungGRT said...

I tried entering my office, saying "Away,you brainless dwarfs! I wait for no one to clear my path!" It did not go over well.

Thanks for posting this-always nice to see early Thomas/Trimpe stuff.

Comicsfan said...

Well, JungGRT, Mogol already had quite the rep when he made that entrance--get a few conquests under your belt, and you should start to see your fellow office workers scattering in no time!

Anonymous said...

"Tis but a scratch!"
Sorry, a little Monty Python reference there. I couldn't help myself.