With underpants bombs making headline everywhere, a look at similar comics themes of groinal aggression have hit a few blogs. Comics Alliance examines a Punisher action figure from Toy Biz who is so glad to see you, he’s going to blow you to kingdom come with a giant ground to air missile launcher emerging from his junk. Was such a figure a joke or really offered for sale to the nation’s youth? A comment reveals Frank-en-killerweenie was in fact part of a shape-shifter line sold at Toys”R”Us and the killer rocket was a merely a transitional — but memorable — stage for the shape shift.
Meanwhie, Topless Robot presents 16 Incredibly Impractical Superhero Costumes — the full list is well worth perusing — but we’ll confine our attention here to Codpiece, who sports a similar crotch rig, with a similar danger of loin-bursting recoil.
Jesus Christ, look at him. If you can’t tell what’s impractical about this costume, you’re either not a guy or don’t live in a place we like to call reality. This bazonkers costume traces back to Codpiece’s even more bazonkers origin story; basically, when this dude was in high school he asked out a girl who rejected him on the grounds that he wasn’t “big enough.” Now, she meant his height, but he took it as a blow to his manhood, which drove him crazy because there was no way for her to know that he was a few quarters short of a dollar. This self-conscious attitude continued to haunt him his entire life, to the point where his doctor suggested he get counseling and he took offense to getting his head “shrunk.” Instead of investing in an expensive car, he decided to hell with subtlety and went straight for blatant overcompensation.
While Rob Bricken is as hilarious as usual in his analysis, he does fail to mention that the character originally appeared in Doom Patrol #70, by Rachel Pollack, Scot Eaton and Tom Sutton, so it was quite probably that the issues inherent in strapping a big gun to your dingus were apparent to the creators involved. If you want to go the full monty of psychoanalysis, you might even recall that writer Pollack is transsexual.
Head Injury Theater has a more thorough write-up on Codpiece, and is similarly alarmed by the story, even though it’s clearly written with a knowing eye (As the splash page shows, it’s also a nod to THE CRYING GAME, a film in which a man unwittingly dates a transsexual.)
Looking at all this, one can’t help but regret that Vertigo and DCU characters don’t cross over, as Codpiece could have served many useful functions in 52, Countdown, or any of the Crisis books. Grant Morrison, why have you forsaken us?
As long as we’re on the topic, let’s salute Tom Savini’s Sex Machine from DUSK TO DAWN:
And finally, one that NEVER goes out of style, Alex Ross’s Citizen Steele. Instead of instilling fear, when this crotch rocket goes off, people cheer!