With the recent announcement that The CW is developing another new DC Comics TV series featuring some of the side characters from established franchises Arrow and The Flash, and with the revelation that the series will include “three major DC characters who have never appeared in a live-action TV series,” now’s as good a time as any to share my top 5 choices for which comics characters should pop up:
This one’s a pipe dream, but it’s one of my all time favorite DC characters. Lobo, “the Main Man”, is an intergalactic bounty hunter whose power is only rivaled by his ego. Originally created by Roger Slifer and Keith Giffen, Lobo eventually became something of a parody in the comics, poking fun at the grim and gritty style of characters who inhabited the comic book world. While mostly giving Superman problems, the Main Man has encountered nearly every hero in the DC Universe at one time or another. Lobo’s powers include super strength, a rapid healing factor, some serious heavy artillery, and a flying motorcycle he uses to traverse the cosmos looking for his next big score.
We have yet to really see any alien involvement in the Flash/Arrow universe, so it would certainly be a curve ball to have the first evidence of extraterrestrial life be a cigar chomping, booze swilling, albino loudmouth. Lobo isn’t a stranger to television, however, as he has appeared in several animated series including Justice League Unlimited, Superman the Animated Series, and Young Justice. Lobo has also danced with film in his time, as Guy Ritchie was attached to direct a feature film adaptation in 2009 at Warner Bros. The film fell to the wayside, and so Lobo may be free to collect some bounties on a television screen near you.
Try saying this guy’s name five times fast! Onomatopoeia is a pretty terrifying villain, as he gave Oliver Queen quite a run for his money in the comics. Created by Kevin Smith of Clerks and Chasing Amy fame, Onomatopoeia is a psychopath whose mission is to specifically kill any heroes who are operating in whatever city he is currently inhabiting. While he doesn’t exactly speak in full sentences, he mostly tends to mimic sounds that he is hearing around him. For example, if water is dripping near him, he’ll say, “drip” or if a gun goes off, he’ll say “blam” and so on and so forth. What makes him scary is his unrelenting nature and ability to really get under the heroes’ skin. While not having powers himself, he’s on a similar level with Oliver Queen and Bruce Wayne, wherein he’s apparently a martial arts and weapons’ expert.
So Onomotopoeia is a tricky case, as apparently the creators of Arrow had wanted the character to appear in an earlier season. Heeding advice of Mr. Smith that the character wouldn’t really “work” on screen, they decided to tweak him and go a different route with the new character, Mr. Blank. I’m of the opinion that he could work as a villain in the upcoming team-up show, if only for an episode, so why not give him a shot? Make him somewhat similar to the Joker with a creepier theme and you’d be good to go.
Well this one’s a slam dunk. Vixen is actually set to star in an online animated series created by The CW, which takes place in the Arrow/Flash Universe this fall, so it’s really only a matter of time before we see Mari McCabe make her debut in live action form. Originally created in 1978 by Gerry Conway and Bob Oskner, Vixen was actually set to become the first female African-American superhero with her own title, but unfortunately just missed the mark when her premiere book was pushed back. Mari received her powers from the old gods of Africa, who imbued within an ancient totem the ability for the wearer to access any power from the animal kingdom they see fit. In essence, she can slam on the necklace and get the strength of a rhino, the speed of a cheetah, or the flight of an eagle among many others.
Much like Lobo, as previously mentioned, Vixen has appeared in a ton of animated series, including Justice League, Batman: Brave and the Bold, and Teen Titans: Go. This is a far out there theory but bear with me on it: so in the Justice League cartoon, Vixen was an item with Green Lantern John Stewart (no relation to the host of The Daily Show) and there have been some online talks about the idea that Arrow’s Diggle is in fact going to be revealed to be that same character. While it’s certainly out there, we’ve seen crazier things come out of this universe as it stands.
Victor Sage happens to be an investigative reporter who moonlights as a superhero without a face! Originally created by Spider-Man co-creator, Steve Ditko, The Question is one of the stranger heroes who populates the DC Universe. Originally, Vic started as a character in the Charleston comic book universe, alongside other heroes such as Blue Beetle and Captain Atom. In fact, if you watched the movie or read the book Watchmen, these three characters were the original templates for Rorscach, Nite Owl, and Dr. Manhattan. The Question tends to be something of a conspiracy nut, rambling to himself most of the time and thinking that everything may be part of some bigger threat. While he may not have any powers to speak of, his “false face” sometimes allows for him to take on any identity he chooses and scare the heck out of criminals in his path. He is also one of the best detectives this side of Bruce Wayne and he didn’t even have to lose his parents to become so…I think. In comic books these days, you sort of just assume the characters have lost their parents.
It’s somewhat surprising that we’ve yet to see Victor Sage in any live-action incarnation. With his stories usually focusing mostly on his detective work and not so much on the side of the supernatural/superpower side of things, he seems like an easy character to bring to life budget wise and he does offer quite the stunning visual. Perhaps this new show will give an answer to the Question.
ETRIGAN THE DEMON
Injecting some of the supernatural into the mix, I would have to pick Etrigan to round out our top five characters, along with his human counterpart, Jason Blood. Created by comic book legend Jack Kirby, the Demon first appeared in the time of King Arthur and the Round Table. Jason Blood, a knight in Arthur’s court, was chosen by Merlin to bond with the demon Etrigan in order to use his power for good. The bond made Blood immortal but thrust him into something of an Incredible Hulk situation wherein he had to wrestle with a demon who was quite bloodthirsty to say the least. Aside from his heightened strength and ability to spew fire from his mouth, Etrigan had the quirk of only being able to talk in rhymes. In fact, the method Blood had to use to bring forth Etrigan was saying, “Gone, gone, the form of man, rise the demon, Etrigan!”
I’ve always had a soft spot for the Demon, as he’s one of those classic characters that shows up from time to time, but in the right hands can be someone that just leaps off the page. I can understand the reasoning behind his not coming to the screen sooner as he’s difficult to bring to life from both a technical and creative standpoint. Technical because he’s a 7-foot-tall yellow demon, and creatively because you’d have to be writing everything he said in rhymes. Still, he’s a character who’s long overdue.
Who are some characters you’d like to see added to the new CW superhero spinoff show’s roster? Respond in the comments below, but remember, they can’t have appeared in a liv- action show before now (trust me, a lot of my original choices were knocked out when I saw who all had appeared in Smallville’s run.)