Some heroes get their powers from magic, others from the light of alien suns… And then, there are those who are empowered by ingestion, proving once and for all the adage that ‘You are what you eat!’ Welcome to Ten Things!
Whooshman-Bicarbonate Films, in conjunction with ‘An Amateur Comics Historian’, and the legendary hero known only as Cookie Monster, Presents:
TEN FOOD-POWERED HEROES!
10) THE HUMAN TOP
Known only as ‘The Top’ within his stories (but billed as ‘Human Top’, one of several to bear the name, which may say something about the nature of comics in the 1940s), Bruce Bravelle gained his superhuman power to spin at superhuman speed (making him essentially invulnerable) due to the efforts of a mysterious scientist. The thing that qualifies him for this particular edition is that the goal of the experiments was NOT to imbue super-powers, but in fact to discover if the human body could be nourished with electrical energy rather than food. Short answer: Yes, but you’ll only get two comic book appearances out of it…
9) POPEYE THE SAILOR
One of the greatest cartoon characters of all time, Popeye began as a bit player in the ‘Thimble Theater’ comic strip circa 1929. Within a few years, he had taken over the lead role of the strip, with former star Olive Oyl as his lady-friend. His super-strength comes from ingesting spinach, a story point that came about (according to some sources) thanks to a misplaced decimal point which assigned the vegetable ten times as much iron content as it actually contained, making it seem as though spinach was the proverbial super-food. Waaaal, blow me down!
8) MATZAH WOMAN
One of the esteemed heroes of the Jewish Hero Corps, Matzah Woman gained her powers (Super-strength, flight, enhanced senses, microwave vision, and hyper-immunity which means that nothing can hurt her except for being submersed in water for more than 18 minutes) by ingesting matzah made with radioactive water. As origins go, it’s no goofier than “bitten by a radioactive spider” or “mongoose-blood”, and it has the bonus of teaching young readers about the traditional unleavened bread eaten by Jews during Passover…
The official superhero of Lazytown, Sportacus follows the Batman tradition, in that he has no real super-powers, but is incredibly fit, strong and agile, thanks to his diet of healthy fruits and vegetables and such, and always arrives in the nick of time thanks to a seemingly clairvoyant crystal built into his uniform. Indeed, his healthy diet is the cornerstone of his abilities, as eating candy actually weakens his physical prowess, forcing him to refuel with some fresh fruit (which he always has on hand in his dirigible/home.)
6) MAN-EATING COW
Trained by the villainous Chairface Chippendale to eat people, she is remarkably tough and much faster than your average bovine, after a steady diet of people in a death-pit, surrounded by alligators and such. After escaping Chairface’s clutches, she takes up fighting crime in the streets of The City, using her “super-power” to keep crime at bay…
…by eating all the criminals, with blinding speed.
5) CAPTAIN CARROT
When a strange, radioactive meteor broke through the barrier between Earth-1 and Earth-C, Roger Rodney Rabbit found that his window box full of carrots was suddenly full of more than just vitamins and carotene. Thanks to these “cosmic carrots”, Rodney is able to become Captain Carrot, Earth-C’s greatest hero, and leader of the mighty Zoo Crew. Nearly as powerful as Superman himself, Captain Carrot’s world was seemingly erased by the Crisis On Infinite Earths, but recently has reappeared in not one, but THREE new incarnations…
4) MILK AND COOKIES
She builds up your teeth and bones. He breaks them down. They are… MILK AND COOKIES! Young mutants with food-powers, they actually enjoyed several adventures in the pages of ‘What The–?” in the early 1990s, and no matter what you think about their gimmick, they’re still cooler than Sabretooth.
3) CALORIE QUEEN
The classic overachiever, Taryn Loy shared her races’ ability to eat and digest all forms of matter, but thanks to an experiment by her father, could convert her stored caloric energy into superhuman strength. Joining up with other Legion Rejects (LSH bylaws at the time forbade duplicate powers, and Tenzil Kem was already a member as Matter-Eater Lad, effectively barring any other Bismollian from membership), she attempted to force her way onto the team, but was bested by Tenzil. Years later, Cal would reappear as Tenzil’s attaché in his role as Bismollian Senator before eventually being drafted into leadership herself…
2) THE CONDIMENT KING
Depending on the incarnation, he is either stand-up comic Buddy Standler or criminal Mitch Mayo, but regardless of the iteration, his ketchup and mustard guns make him more annoyance than actual threat (unless you’re allergic to ketchup or mustard.) Still, his puns were okay, and his presence was quite memorable, making him a likeable, if goofy villain. Naturally, DC Comics had him brutally beaten to death on panel circa Final Crisis…
1) UNKOSHER-ACTION BATTLE-ARMOR DEADPOOL
When faced with the menace of Bullseye (then masquerading as Hawkeye of the Dark Avengers), the Merc With A Mouth donned a suit of meat, the better to offset the advantage of broad-tipped hunting arrows. Honestly, the idea of using a ham bone as a weapon and body-armor of pork is remarkably resourceful, and serves as some advanced tactical brilliance on Wade’s part.
Plus: The helmet is a hoot…
Thanks to Faithful Spoilerites Dawn (@knittybob) and Sydness (@Imthe7eventh) for this week’s INCREDIBLY DIFFICULT theme, and feel free to follow along @MightyKingCobra for more Ten Things madness on Twitter. As with any set of like items, these aren’t meant to be hard and fast or absolutely complete, but good luck finding more, Faithful Spoilerites…
Either way, the comments section is Below for just such an emergency, but, as always: Please, no wagering!