Saturday, June 15, 2013

One Chicken Leg, One Lightning Leg

Reading another old comic book: MYSTERY IN SPACE #104, from December, 1965. It's all about this guy Ultra the Multi-Alien, who I guess was a human until four aliens shot him with ray guns at the same time! They show it in flashback, and when the guy is getting shot by four ray guns he is saying, and I quote, "YIIIII!" And who can blame him? Anyway, one of the aliens shooting him looks like a chicken, and one looks like a bolt of lightning, and another guy is smooth and blue and a fourth guy is furry and green. And for some reason, when they get through shooting him, this former human has one chicken leg and one lightning leg, while up top he is half smooth and blue, half furry and green. WHAT KINDS OF GUNS ARE THESE? And also he is suddenly and magically wearing a diaper. And thus he has become... ULTRA THE MULTI-ALIEN. He is tickling me so much! The narration box informs us: "LATER, A GRIM FACT WAS REALIZED..." Love that passive construction! Ultra is shown studying a couple of sheets of paper and saying, "THESE SCIENTIFIC PAPERS STATE I CAN NEVER REGAIN MY HUMAN FORM AGAIN -- I'M DOOMED AS THIS AWESOME... MULTI-ALIEN! BUT I MUST GO ON LIVING... HAVE A PURPOSE... AN IDENTITY!" All right, I can dig it. And now his ex-girlfriend, who thinks he is dead, mournfully gazes at his picture, as Ultra peeps and creeps around outside her window, moaning, "OH, BONNIE... BONNIE..." I don't know why this is making me laugh! But just look at his face in the next panel. (He's still lurking right outside Bonnie's window.) His thought balloon, which I have cropped out while taking this photo for you, says, "OH WHY... WHY DID THIS TERRIBLE THING HAVE TO HAPPEN TO ME?" Look how mopey he looks! The mopiest! The champion mope. Arguably, a superhero should not place his hands on his face in such a frail fashion! Somehow he makes me think of Tom Chaney, the villain of the novel TRUE GRIT, who is always saying things like, "Nothing is going right for me," and "Everything is against me. Now I am shot by a child." Well, I'm only on page 3 of this story about old Ultra the Multi-Alien. Maybe I'm misjudging him.