Thursday, February 25, 2016

Earth 10: Rogues Gallery 3: Vigilante

Rogues Gallery 3: Vigilante

Vigilante’s Rogue’s Gallery is a bit of a challenge as he didn’t have much of one in the comics. On the plus side this lets me tailor his rogues to match the new version of him, on the negative side there’s a little less connectivity. Still, I can rescue some of his old rogues thanks to the wonders of Wikipedia. (I also think that during his WWII adventures he absolutely need to have a sidekick in Stuff, the Chinatown Kid, who passed away a political leader of the Chinese community before the age of heroes.

The Dummy

This diminutive desperado has somehow acquired a copy of MacTaggart’s uncle’s notebooks, giving him access to the same genius that powered Adam’s resurrection and all of his electromagnetic gear. This makes the Dummy very dangerous indeed. Unfortunately shortly after their first encounter (when he was still an ordinary weapons manufacturer working for criminals) his attempt at self-healing went gloriously awry, reducing him in stature but increasing his density to that of hardwood, making him a human ventriloquist’s dummy. In this form he manages a small stable of criminals who use his advanced technology for crime. He’s doubly dangerous since he’s slightly more technogically adept than Adam, making him better able to adopt his uncle’s technologies.

The Rattler

Another western themed villain, the Rattler is Vigilante’s opposite number when it comes to cowboy skills, and has a definite edge over Adam in those skills. He’s a killer for hire, travelling across the west, and his trademark is using rubber bullets laced containing slivers of concentrated rattlesnake venom. While Vigilante has never been able to best him in a gunflight Adam’s technological and physical advantaged let him carry the day. Someday the Dummy and the Rattler will team up and that will be a dark day for the defender of liberty.

The Rainbow Man

This classic costumed villain operates across the American west pulling color themed crimes. He carries with him light and gas based devices, with the Red, Orange and Yellow pistol generating flames, lasers or blinding flashes while the Green, Blue, Indigo and Purple gasses change depending on the crime, but always tying to some common phrase or idiom (such as hallucinogenic purple haze, depression generating Blues, or something that generates a marijuana –fueled introspection called Mood Indigo). Like all obsessed theme villains he’s kind of a goober but surprisingly effective.

Dead Man’s Hand

This group of 5 card themed villains as existed in some configuration since the fateful day when Wild Bill Hickock was shot by Jack McCall on August 2nd, 1876. Hickock’s hand at the time was the ace of diamonds with a heel mark on it; the ace of clubs; the two black eights, clubs and spades, and the queen of hearts with a small drop of Hickock's blood on it – that drop of blood completed a dark ritual, binding spirits of lawlessness to those hands and humanity. Since then the Dead Man’s Hand has always reconfigured itself whenever the Vigilante has taken it apart, be it a gang of desperados, a motorcycle club, a group of dandified assassins or a dark riverboat magician who was enslaving peoples souls for gambling debts. In this case it is a quintet of actual super-villains, with the ace of clubs having a high tech energy-projecting staff, the ace of diamond having a flying ‘ace’ board that contains a variety of weapons (and acts as the teams transport), the eight of clubs being a martial artist able to make duplicates of himself, the eight of spades able to create and throw spades of pure solid darkness and the queen of hearts with mind and emotion control powers. This is a villain set that will definitely require the JAA’s help to permanently take down. (this is obviously the Earth 10 version of the Royal Flush Gang, but I like mine better).

Zalozhniy

Pitor Ivanovitch was born on February 2nd 1918, a day that never existed with the adoption of the Georgian calendar, this child of the Revolution was blessed by a kindly old grandmother in a forest hut who swore he would be on Earth for his 100th birthday. Fleeing the chaos in Mother Russia to the United States, where at the age of 18 he was unceremoniously killed in some mob violence and dropped in an unmarked grave. But as a member of the unhallowed dead he rose and has stalked the earth ever since, waiting for his 100th birthday and the end of his time. During that century he has raised up mob after mob to tear down society. He can be incredibly persuasive in leading mobs of the downtrodden. His undifferentiated anger sometimes leads him to embrace white supremacy, other times mobs of the homeless, or the mad. His only constants are directing the anger of the mob against civilization and the inability to die.

The Chainman

A recent edition to the Vigilante’s super-powered rogues’ gallery, the Chainman has constructed technology to the point of magic (perhaps under Brainiac’s influence?) incorporated into collars and chains and manacles that force those wearing them to operate under Asimov’s laws. High tech slavery, with no risk of revolt. Already too much of the world’s slave trade is under his control, and he is extending it, bit by bit into the United States. He will find that attracting the attention of the defender of liberty will have been his greatest mistake.