First crossover appearance: The Savage Dragon Vs. The Savage Megaton Man Special
|Publisher||Kitchen Sink Press (1984–1990)|
Image Comics (1994)
Fiasco Comics (1995–1996)
|First appearance||Megaton Man #1 (Kitchen Sink Press, Nov. 1984)|
|Created by||Don Simpson|
|Alter ego||Trent Phloog|
|Team affiliations||The VW Gang|
|Notable aliases||Man of Molecules, Megaton Lad|
|Abilities||Flight, Super-Strength, Durability, "Megaton vision" (X-ray vision), Bulletproof, Explode|
Megaton Man (civilian alter ego: Trent Phloog) is a satirical superhero created by cartoonist "Dandy Don" Simpson. A parody of the superhero genre, Megaton Man is a gigantically-muscled but dim-witted oaf who starred in Simpson's cheerfully absurd stories.
- 1 Publication history
- 2 Character
- 3 Supporting cast
- 4 Teen Idols
- 5 Other Heroes of the Fiascoverse
- 6 Foes of Megaton Man
- 7 External links
Megaton Man is also the title of the creator-owned comic book series (published by Kitchen Sink Press beginning in 1984) Simpson wrote and drew, in which the character first appeared and starred. The original Megaton Man series ran for ten issues, but the character was later revived in a limited series, The Return of Megaton Man, and a series of one-shot issues spun off from the concept.
In 1994, Simpson left Kitchen Sink to form his own company, Fiasco Comics, through which Simpson self-published his new title Bizarre Heroes, featuring Megaton Man (and many members of his old supporting cast) as part of a large ensemble cast. Bizarre Heroes ended when Fiasco went out of business during the mid-1990s contraction of the American comics industry, but Megaton Man and the rest of the Bizarre Heroes went on to appear in several projects published by Image Comics.
Trent Phloog lives in Megatropolis, a futuristic city in Michigan, United States, and he makes his living as the superhero Megaton Man, otherwise known as "The Man of Molecules". Whenever he says the magic word "Overkill", he explodes. Megaton Mans' costume is metallic blue, with yellow gloves and boots. His allies include X-Ray Boy and Yarn Man, who both assist Megaton Man in battles against his arch foes, Bad Guy and Bulky Guy.
The origins of Megaton Mans' powers remain unknown, but the comic suggests two possibilities: he was either bitten by a radioactive frog, or he was the result of a military megasoldier program. When he first gained his powers, Megaton Man was known as Megaton Lad and he had a sidekick called Plutonium Pup. When Plutonium Pup died on his 21st birthday, Phloog changed his name to Megaton Man.
Trent Phloog is married to Stella Starlight, who is the superheroine known as Earth Mother, and they have one child. In recent times, Megaton Man has discovered other incarnations of himself that were active in the past or are active in the present. These include Golden Age Megaton Man, Silver-Age Megaton Man, and a Russian Megaton Man whose costume is red. Outside Megatropolis, Megaton Man is allied to The Phantom Jungle Girl. Villains outside Megatropolis include Irving the Living Cactus, and the Tomb Team, a band of supernatural villains including the Bride of Frankenstein and Dracula's Daughter.
There were two incarnations of X-Ray Boy. The existing one (Larry Barton) lives in Livonia, Michigan. He is Megaton Man's sidekick, and has a robotic arm. His x-ray vision derives from his oversized glasses. When he sent off for a pair of x-ray glasses in an advertisement, he was given real x-ray glasses accidentally released by the Pentagon. The powerful vision burnt his left arm off (hence his cybernetic new arm). When asked to give up the goggles, Larry didn't need them, as the powers had fused into his eyes, giving them a green colour. His schoolfriends now have the goggles, as the Pentagon Representatives were accidentally killed by X-Ray Boys' powers. The current X-Ray Boy is a member of the VW Gang.
The 1980s X-Ray Boy was Preston Percy. Hurt by being dropped at a young age, he became evil and formed a group of supervillains known as the Tomb Team. Both versions of X-Ray Boy are heavy smokers.
Yarn Man (AKA: Bing Gloom) was a member of the Megatropolis Quartet, but is now part of the VW Gang. Yarn Man is so-called because his entire body is made from yarn. Unlike other members of the VW Gang, Yarn Man is the only other superhero who has his own sidekick (Kozmik Kat) and his own personal foe, Irving the Living Cactus (see below). The character of Yarn Man seems very similar to The Thing from Fantastic Four. He was based on Spooner, a real life crocheted man from Ann Arbor.
The Phantom Jungle Girl
Donna Blank works as an activist in Detroit, Michigan, but when trouble strikes, she becomes The Phantom Jungle Girl. A long-time ally of Megaton Man, she is also known for discovering the secret of Preston Percy and the Tomb Team.
The Phantom Jungle Girl has also made appearances alongside another superhero called The Tick, a superhero similar in design to Megaton Man. Her boyfriend is the Meddler, a living corpse dedicated to defending Detroit.
There was also an incarnation of The Phantom Jungle Girl from the 1950s, known as The '50s Jungle Girl, and the mother of the current incarnation, who took up the mantle in later days.
A talking gorilla from the state of Texas, Cowboy Gorilla was the fourth member of the Megatropolis Quartet. Since the group disbanded, he continues to aid Megaton Man frequently as part of the VW Gang, but has never got on with Yarn Man.
Gower Goose and Kozmik Kat
Two anthropomorphic animals, Gower Goose and Kozmik Kat are the mascots to Megaton Man and his friends and members of the VW Gang.
- Kozmik Kat is a feline version of Megaton Man, who speaks fluent English and will gladly attack any predators, within reason. He doesn't believe in violence towards women, and is more laid back than other heroes. Kozmik Kat is officially sidekick to Yarn Man, and preferred the "megahero" business as he is descended from a family of alley-cats, which didn't appeal to him. Kozmik Kat could possibly be a reference to Streaky the Supercat.
- Gower Goose is a cowardly goose and a heavy drinker. Although not tough on the side of action, he feels better suited to doing odd jobs for his friends, such as cleaning the dishes and mopping the floor. A good friend of X-Ray Boy, Gower Goose has also had a crush on Mooncat, a member of Tomb Team. Outside his megahero image, Gower Goose is a radio presenter for his own radio station, WUCK (Named after his catchphrase). Gower Goose looks very similar in appearance to Howard the Duck.
As the X-Thems are a parody of X-Men, the Teen Idols are a parody of Teen Titans. Little is known about their background, except that they operate in Novi, Michigan, and reports say that they have recently disappeared.
Other Heroes of the Fiascoverse
The "Bizarre Heroes" as they have been called since their debut are the other minor heroes of the Fiascoverse, but all of them seem to operate within Michigan. These are:
Anti-Matter Woman (Andrea Revell) is another superheroine in Megatropolis. Originally called Negative Woman, the name was altered in order not to be confused with Negative Woman of DC Comics' Doom Patrol.
Little is known about Captain Keystone, but he is known to be an elder superhero of Megatropolis. He is a tutor to all superheroes in Michigan, and his powers are unknown. The idea of a superhero mentor could possibly refer to Captain Atlantis (sometimes Captain Newfoundland), a Canadian hero who tutored other heroes such as Captain Canada.
Formerly "See-Thru Girl", Earth Mother is a superheroine in Megatropolis who is often accompanied by Miss Megaton Man. In reality, she is Stella Starlight, wife to Megaton Man. The change of name was because the original was too risqué.
Little is known about this bandaged mummy-style vigilante save that he is a living corpse. He has had a relationship with the Phantom Jungle Girl.
Liberal senator Pete Teriano wears a costume which makes him look like an anthropomorhic Pterosaur. He is assisted by Lisa Kopernick and the Cave Babes.
A young vigilante armed with a gun that shoots an adhesive substance. Seems similar to Spider-Man.
Foes of Megaton Man
The Kickstand Kid
The first villain Megaton Man encountered after changing from Megaton Lad, The Kickstand Kid was a young boy in an enormous robotic body with guns built into almost every part of the machine. As bullets have no effect on Megaton Man, The Kickstand Kid was easily defeated. He seems to bear some resemblance to Gizmo of the Teen Titans.
A foe of the now-disbanded Megatropolis Quartet, Dr. Software plagued Megaton Man frequently, and still does following the disbanding of his rivals' "megahero" team. Dr. Software was also responsible for the capture and holding to ransom of a newspaper journalist, Pamela Jointly (a possible reference to Lois Lane).
Bad Guy & Bulky Guy
Two clumsy cousins, Bad Guy and Bulky Guy are both behemoths residing in Megatropolis, who cause as much havoc as possible for the various incarnations of Megaton Man. They have frequently been defeated by not only Megaton Man, but Golden Age Megaton Man, Miss Megaton Man and Anti-Matter Woman.
Irving the Living Cactus
Not a foe of Megaton Man himself, but an enemy of Yarn Man. Irving is able to use his spikes to pin himself to Yarn Man and slowly rip his fibre-body apart. He was supposedly killed by an electric shock from X-Ray Boy in a ghost-town west of Detroit, Michigan, but was merely dehydrated. When he was thrown into a river filled with chemically-polluted water, Irving was resurrected in a new anthropomorphic form, and has sworn revenge against the VW Gang.
The Tomb Team
A team of supernatural entities residing in the catacombs of Ypsilanti Cemetery in Michigan, the Tomb Team can all only speak German, and are led by Megaton Mans' 1980's sidekick, Preston Percy. The Tomb Team are supposedly killed after a battle with Megaton Man, Yarn Man and Cowboy Gorilla while en route to Detroit, Michigan, but interference by Count Dracula has led to the revival of the Frankenstein creations and revival attempts are being made on Dracula's Daughter.
Members of the Tomb Team include:
- Forbidden Frankenstein - A purple behemoth who previously battled solo with Megaton Man.
- The Bride of Frankenstein - Beautiful wife of the above, who can speak English as well as German.
- Dracula's Daughter - Green-skinned daughter of Dracula, who is somehow able to move about in daylight. Since the Draculas emigrated to Cleveland from Transylvania, Dracula's Daughter has constantly pestered her father, and it is her vampire bite that places Cowboy Gorilla out of action for a time.
- An unnamed Werewolf (deceased).
- The Mooncat - A spoiled nurse who became a demoness after giving a bad image to The Phantom Jungle Girl in a brief superhero gig.