The Champions: Pure Comics Genius
Whoever thought a super-team like the Champions was a good idea was very, very wrong.
It was an awesome idea.
I've mentioned them a couple of times over the past week, but in case you're just joining us, the Champions are quite possibly the worst team in Marvel Comics history, composed of what seems like a random grouping of Marvel characters that weren't realy doing anything else at the time.
There's Iceman and Angel, who got shoved out of the X-Men to make room for some guy called Wolverine; Ghost Rider, seen here in his whiny Legion of Monsters days wherein he rode the Skull Cycle and had to deal with his head bursting into flames anytime danger was near; Hercules, whose major accomplishments involve drunken brawls with real super-heroes; and, fresh from her breakup with Daredevil, the bewitching Black Widow.
Incidentally, aside from a lone scene where she's lounging on a beach in a bikini pondering whether or not to go save Hercules from being pressganged into marriage, the Black Widow always appears in her costume, a fetching black leather full body ensemble with dart launchers on her wrists. She wears this even when she's on a job interview to become UCLA's new Russian professor, and that is weird.
Weirder still, however, is the fact that in what can only be called a misguided attempt to pass as a civilian, she elects to put normal clothes on on top of her costume, despite the fact that a skirt and fashionable blouse do little to hide the fact that you're wearing a full-body black leather catsuit underneath--and in fact, actually make it kinda creepy.
Seriously, Tony Isabella: What's that all about?
Anyway, that's the lineup. And while the Defenders get a lot of flak for being one of the worst teams ever, that's a team that has the Hulk, Dr. Strange, the Silver Surfer, and the frigg'n Sub-Mariner, and those four guys are badass. Even the minor-league version of the team had a female Thor analog with pigtails and a sword, which is probably one of the greatest character ideas ever.
The Champions, meanwhile, have two part-time third-string Avengers and what essentially amounts to three scrubs. And considering that Chris Claremont pits them against a group of super-strong retarded hobos in Champions #3, that pretty much makes them the spiritual predecessor to Nextwave.
Regardless, even without the issues where Bill Mantlo first introduced the world to the magic that is Swarm, it's my kind of comic, and by that I mean that there is a lot of punching. So what better to shed light on the unappreciated genius of the Champions than with a look at the astounding sound effects:
Wait one second. I was willing to just roll along with "CRAM!," but the sound of the Black Widow kicking someone in the head is "BUNCH!"? Holy crap that is awesome.
The Champions: Because you're not going to see someone get hit with a lamppost to the sound effect of "SWATT!" anywhere else.
Belive me. I've looked.