The Combined DCU-Marvel Universe thread

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Libra
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Post by Libra » Mon Dec 29, 2008 12:44 pm

Well, I must be my own hardest taskmaster then. 8)

I'm also rather intimidated by playing with the Big Boy's Toys, so to speak. :shock:
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Post by Libra » Mon Dec 29, 2008 12:51 pm

Earth-777s Mightiest Heroes

Thankfully in a world where costumed madmen can rob Fort Knox, masked megalomaniacs could potentially Conquer the World and cosmic monstrosities destroy entire planets on a daily – or at least weekly – basis there are a lot of superheroes around, masked men and women prepared to fight for Truth, Justice and all the other Virtues.

While it’s difficult to be comprehensive in a world where new teams spring into existence – and sadly disappear – at a moments notice, these teams are the most well-known and generally held in the highest regard.

The Avengers: In the past the team’s media-given title of ‘Earth’s Mightiest Heroes’ might be called a bit of a stretch, given the existence of another team that includes the likes of Superman, Wonder Woman and the Martian Manhunter and the fact that while the Avengers tend to work together more often, their individual members tend to be less powerful than the average Justice League member.

This is still the case – but the title is no longer arguable. As the face and heart of the US Superhuman Initiative created by the Stamford Registration Act (Technically the Superhuman Registration Act, but the term has been use in the media as a more neutral term, to distinguish it from its controversial predecessors and as a reminder of the act’s validation) the Avengers are now the largest superhuman team in Earth’s history - given that all active, registered American metahumans are regarded as members, with the various teams created in other states akin to regional offshoots and franchises.

The team also has the wholehearted backing of the US Government and can rely upon the support of SHIELD for close support when particular operations require it.

On the other hand it has also developed an unpleasant reputation as – I quote – “Jack-booted enforcers of the Iron Hitler himself.” While this isn’t entirely justified it is true enough that while unregistered superheroes may not be the team’s first priority they are high on their list.

The Avengers’ traditional problems with an over-attentive media are still in full force – and in fact even worse now, given the increased publicity surrounding this excessively public, Government-sponsored team. As ever the fact that the Avengers base in one of the biggest cities on Earth and their government liaisons mean that they have a harder time avoiding public scrutiny than the Justice League and more information accessible for the truly dedicated snoop.

Hopes that the still under-construction Triskelion (Symbol of the new Superhuman Initiative and the brand-new New York base for both the Avengers and SHIELD) will allow greater privacy are probably pipe-dreams and the Avengers’ habit of attracting more . . . extreme personalities is unlikely to have been left behind in Avengers Mansion.

The Avengers tend to operate largely on Earth herself, concentrating on more terrestrial problems than those the Justice League habitually confront. The team is generally forced to focus on the most extreme threats confronting New York - which is already enough to keep several teams busy and near-outgunned and getting worse - Given that the US Government will request their intervention if it requires ‘Big Guns’ superhuman intervention the team is generally extremely busy.

The Fantastic Four: The most famous family in the world as well as one of the first and most famous superhero teams of the Modern Age.

In actual fact it would be more accurate to call them ‘Science Heroes’, since although they will intervene to stop crime and evil when they encounter it, they do not seek it out.

Instead the team concentrates it’s attentions on Scientific Research and Exploration, with the Four Freedoms Plaza currently resembling something of an unofficial think tank/school for child prodigies, particularly children of registered – and some unregistered – metahumans.

Still, these scientific advances have attracted thieves aplenty, as well as enemies like Victor Von Doom of Latveria and the Four’s explorations have uncovered evils that no other heroes could face – or were even aware existed.

The leader of the Fantastic Four, Dr. Reed Richards, remains a highly public supporter of the Registration Act, but the team as a whole remains divided on the issue. Those children of unregistered superhumans weren’t left there by the Government and the Four haven’t drawn attention to this fact.

The Justice League: In the minds of many the Most Powerful team of Superheroes on the planet (Almost certainly true in terms of individual members) the Justice League is currently acting as recognised peacekeepers for the United Nations. Team members – anyone who can claim membership, past or present - are therefore not required to observe the terms of the Stamford Registration Act. The Justice League therefore serves as something of an alternative to the US 50-States Initiative.

However, not all American superhumans who do not wish to register have joined the team. Many believe that to do so would be perceived as cowardly or as abandoning their opposition to the Registration Act – Given the League’s official policy of silence on the matter as a team. (Individual members are unafraid to speak their minds however and few of them agree with the Act, or at least it’s implementation.)

The League seldom assembles its full membership – which is substantial, given its lengthy history, immense prestige and Superman’s “Once Justice League, always Justice League. Unless you’re a villain” policy – and even its main field team is seldom assembled since the League generally assembles to face only the most terrible of threats, generally those of a cosmic or – given that their main base is the new Watchtower Satellite – interstellar nature.

Its individual members are expected to be available and ready for League Business at a moment’s notice, but are generally left to deal with their own business.

The team essentially functions as a first-response and first line of defence for Earth against extraterrestrial threats, although it has recently been facing a rising tide of increasingly organised superhuman crime directed at them by many of its old foes.

The Justice Society of America: The very first assembly of costumed, heroic Mystery Men – Although they seldom operated as an actual team in their first heyday - the Justice Society’s modern incarnation has been based in New York since its inception.

Given this fact it’s unsurprising that they’ve been the focus of (very) subtle pressure from the Government to register. What’s surprising is that they’ve actually done so – Technically.

The fact is that no-one want’s a repeat of the HUAC debacle – or the drawing of any comparisons with that mess – and they’ve been content to accept the Society’s argument that “Sixty-plus years of honorary membership in various law enforcement agencies mean that we’re already good to go son.”

For now, at least. It does help that many of their younger members also enjoy membership of the Justice League.

The Justice Society nowadays acts more as a training ground for young metahumans and a place for older superheroes near retirement to do some good while stepping down the pace a bit. (Just a bit, though. ‘Active’ for superheroes means “At least lightspeed plus 300.”)

They are also a symbol of the continuity of superheroism and an example to all other superheroes of how things should be done – including the likes of the Avengers and more particularly their close associates, the Justice League.

In practice this means they tend to focus on American superhuman crime in general and those threats which they are uniquely suited to face in particular. (Mostly those foes they have faced before, in one incarnation or another). They are also inclined to face down those supervillains who trace their ancestry to the Golden Age of the 1940s – especially neo-fascists.

Nothing riles the JSA like a Nazi, old or new.

The X-Men: There have been a great many teams of superhumans with an ‘X’ in front of their name and they all share something in common: All, to one degree or another, share Charles Xavier’s dream for a peaceful co-existence for humanity and mutants, even if they have never studied at the Xavier School for Gifted Youngsters.

However their numbers have been much-reduced by the recent, tragic events of M-Day.

Currently the only X-team in existence is the X-Men proper, the teaching staff and older students of the School for the Gifted - now under the leadership of Scott Summers – whose stated goals are “To educate those new mutants ignorant of their powers so that they may use them to the benefit of themselves and society, to further the ideal of a peaceful co-existence between Human and Metahuman, to stand against bigotry in any and all it's forms and to protect any who stand in danger, mutant or human.”

(Note: The reason the team are known as the X-Men is not because of any vanity on Charles Xavier’s part, or a misspelled shortening of ‘Extra’, but because Charles Xavier was intimately involved with - and much influenced by – the American Civil Rights Movement. The use of ‘X’ is intended to draw deliberate parallels between these two peaceful political movements. Unfortunately not a few have quite missed the point.)
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Post by Charles Phipps » Mon Dec 29, 2008 1:00 pm

Very nicely handled, Libra.

An excellent overview of the two big teams in the world and their handling. Plus, of course, the X-men as founded by Charles Xavier. The linkage to the American Civil Rights movement was also properly handled.

Bravo.

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Post by Charles Phipps » Mon Dec 29, 2008 1:18 pm

Iron Man

Tony Stark's current reputation amongst the superhero community is roughly the equivalent of being just between Doctor Doom and that toe fungus that occurs if you don't wash your tights very often. It's something he predicted, but had hoped would eventually be smoothed over. Unfortunately, human beings rarely operate in the same manner that machines do and this is why Tony Stark is unmarried and currently friendless (with the exception of Pepper Potts and James Rhodes).

Honestly, Tony Stark has the respect of many superheroes. Which, ironically, just currently leads to many of them feeling more disappointed in him. Superman views Tony Stark very much as Lex Luthor could have been. A man who uses his tremendous genius to the benefit of the world and does not harp on the jealousy that seperates human and Post-Human. Batman comprehends that Tony Stark is what Bruce Wayne really could have been had he not chosen to fight crime.

A man who makes the world better through the Maria Stark Foundation every bit as much as the Wayne Foundation. Even Captain America, Steve Rogers, always believed in Tony Stark. Unfortunately, what he always believed was that Tony Stark existed in a world of mathmatics rather than absolutes. Tony Stark beliees in right and wrong, good and evil, and Mom plus American Pie=America. Unfortunately, he often gravely underestimates just how erroneous his ability to read situations is.

At heart, Tony Stark doesn't understand people. He never will. Tony Stark is capable of telling people what they want to hear, of being devastatingly charming, and reading a political or tactical situation at a heart beat. This does not in any way apply to the ability to understand how people will react on an individual level to open and honest feelings. This is partially due to Tony Stark's upbringing. His alcoholic and work obsessed father rode on the back of his son's genius and forced him to become an introvert who had the genius of a salesman.

Had Tony Stark a better understanding, he would have realized Pepper Potts would have loved him despite his damaged heart after the events in Afghanistan (though some Confidential Reports indicate he might have been investigating troop movements by Mandarian allied terrorists in Vietnam) and Tony would not have tortured himself with a series of meaningless relationships while she fell in love with his chauffer. He might have understood that there was no "normalizing" The Registration issue. He might have understood that any government who puts Norman Osbourne in a position of power is EVIL and needs to be opposed at every level.

The Civil War incident was honestly something he misunderstood at all levels. Tony Stark wanted to normalize relations, so he figured everyone would eventually play ball. Tony Stark never was the enemy of the government like the X-men. He never was hunted by the law like Spiderman or Captain America. He's unlikely to have ever heard of Weapon-X's Neverland Concentration Camp and probably still thinks Lex Luthor's election was a fluke. At heart, he believes in the innate goodness of man. Which is perhaps why he unwittingly became the puppet for people who hate superheroes and everything they represent.

Tony Stark is a good man. When Tony Stark looks at Africa and sees the starving people of the world. He asks himself "How do I fix this?" When Tony Stark built his artifcial heart, he had all of the applications patented and saved thousands of loves. The only reason Tony never let Iron Man's suit of armor out is because even he's smart enough to realize that things like the Sentinels are too dangerous to allow to have it. If he had this much foresight earlier, the world might still have a Captain America.

Tony knows his name is cheered for in the streets but he also knows the crowds are fickle. The same people saying he was a hero for Registration might well be the ones who'd have done the same for opposing Civil Rights acts. History has a longer view than immediate emotions and if Tony cared about how the public percieved him, he'd have never become Iron Man in the first place. Instead, he puts aside his many blunders and failures to deal with the fascist leanings of the current Meta-Hating government and Luthor holdovers to go back to his workshop.

Here, amongst machines, he knows what is real and what works. Here, he can make a difference.

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Post by Davies » Mon Dec 29, 2008 1:26 pm

... since I am basically inclined to view Tony (and Reed's) actions as products of writers overly influenced by the anti-intellectualism that's all too prevalent in contemporary Western culture, I have no comment.

Can anyone contribute to this? Because I have some ideas for some of the supporting casts.

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Post by Charles Phipps » Mon Dec 29, 2008 1:35 pm

Davies wrote:... since I am basically inclined to view Tony (and Reed's) actions as products of writers overly influenced by the anti-intellectualism that's all too prevalent in contemporary Western culture, I have no comment.
Iron Man is one of my favorite characters. So is Charles Xavier. Personally, I think Iron Man has done more good for the world (theoretically) than other superheroes combined probably have. However, there's no benefit to Civil War and I can't imagine that any intellectual argument can be made to support Registration.

So, basically, this is about going with Iron Man's central concept. Which is, of course, that he's a flawed superhero with no ability to interact with his fellow humans on anything but a superficial level. This has always been Iron Man's concept and would be there even if I didn't have to pay lip service to Civil War (which I'd rather forget existed).

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Post by Ecalsneerg » Mon Dec 29, 2008 4:11 pm

Charles Phipps wrote:So, basically, this is about going with Iron Man's central concept. Which is, of course, that he's a flawed superhero with no ability to interact with his fellow humans on anything but a superficial level. This has always been Iron Man's concept and would be there even if I didn't have to pay lip service to Civil War (which I'd rather forget existed).
Your universe, out of curiousity why have you decided to incorporate all of recent events into continuity as much as you can?

I'm not opposing this policy, just wondering as to its reasoning. Is it simply to make it easier to update as characters have new storylines?

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Post by Charles Phipps » Mon Dec 29, 2008 4:14 pm

Ecalsneerg wrote: Your universe, out of curiousity why have you decided to incorporate all of recent events into continuity as much as you can?

I'm not opposing this policy, just wondering as to its reasoning. Is it simply to make it easier to update as characters have new storylines?
Mostly because I'm not interested in creating a whole new Combined DCU-Marvel universe from scratch. This is about adapting the characters from Marvel and DC into a single universe. Sticking with a frame of reference that everyone knows seems important to that.

This is for maximum accessibility.

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Post by MightyDavidson » Mon Dec 29, 2008 8:23 pm

Charles Phipps wrote:
Ecalsneerg wrote: Your universe, out of curiousity why have you decided to incorporate all of recent events into continuity as much as you can?

I'm not opposing this policy, just wondering as to its reasoning. Is it simply to make it easier to update as characters have new storylines?
Mostly because I'm not interested in creating a whole new Combined DCU-Marvel universe from scratch. This is about adapting the characters from Marvel and DC into a single universe. Sticking with a frame of reference that everyone knows seems important to that.

This is for maximum accessibility.
Fair enough Charles.

Though considering what a good job you're doing of making me like your combined universe even though it references all the recent crud Marvel and DC has put out, I for one hope you someday do become interested in creating a whole new Combined DCU-Marvel Universe from scratch. :)

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Post by Charles Phipps » Mon Dec 29, 2008 8:31 pm

MightyDavidson wrote:
Fair enough Charles.

Though considering what a good job you're doing of making me like your combined universe even though it references all the recent crud Marvel and DC has put out, I for one hope you someday do become interested in creating a whole new Combined DCU-Marvel Universe from scratch. :)
Thanks, it was called Halt Evil Doer.

:-)

I welcome suggestions for something different but mostly, I'd prefer to reference stuff and put it in a likable context than try and ignore it. I did, however, contemplate write-ups without the references. I felt it might be confusing to reades though.

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Post by MightyDavidson » Mon Dec 29, 2008 9:45 pm

Charles Phipps wrote:
MightyDavidson wrote:
Fair enough Charles.

Though considering what a good job you're doing of making me like your combined universe even though it references all the recent crud Marvel and DC has put out, I for one hope you someday do become interested in creating a whole new Combined DCU-Marvel Universe from scratch. :)
Thanks, it was called Halt Evil Doer.

:-)

I welcome suggestions for something different but mostly, I'd prefer to reference stuff and put it in a likable context than try and ignore it. I did, however, contemplate write-ups without the references. I felt it might be confusing to reades though.
Again, fair enough. You manage to make it palatable enough that it doesn't bother me to much, though mentions of M-Day make me cringe a bit.

As for Halt Evil Doer, if it's as good as what you've written so far I might have to track it down.

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Post by PhelanMahoney » Tue Dec 30, 2008 2:22 am

Interesting how all this is coming along.

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Post by dirkgentry2000 » Tue Dec 30, 2008 6:51 am

MightyDavidson wrote:
Charles Phipps wrote:
MightyDavidson wrote:
Fair enough Charles.

Though considering what a good job you're doing of making me like your combined universe even though it references all the recent crud Marvel and DC has put out, I for one hope you someday do become interested in creating a whole new Combined DCU-Marvel Universe from scratch. :)
Thanks, it was called Halt Evil Doer.

:-)

I welcome suggestions for something different but mostly, I'd prefer to reference stuff and put it in a likable context than try and ignore it. I did, however, contemplate write-ups without the references. I felt it might be confusing to reades though.
Again, fair enough. You manage to make it palatable enough that it doesn't bother me to much, though mentions of M-Day make me cringe a bit.

As for Halt Evil Doer, if it's as good as what you've written so far I might have to track it down.
Looks like it's being re-released in January (judging by Charles' post in the Superlink forum). And- yes - you really should. It's the goods.

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Post by Khantalas » Tue Dec 30, 2008 7:18 am

CaptainMarvelCaptainMarvelCaptainMarvelCaptainMarvel...

Please?
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Post by dirkgentry2000 » Tue Dec 30, 2008 7:28 am

Can't believe I missed this thread. Good stuff, Libra and Charles - -as I've come to expect.

Curious to see what you do with the new Skrull Invasion (one suspects the Martian Manhunter - if alive on Earth-777 - would have infilitrated the enemy ranks and sown chaos.)

Hoping you fellows choose to ignore the recent mess of Batman RIP and Final Crisis. If you do decide to address those events - - well, maybe your take on it will help me understand WTF has actually happened there. :)

Also - just a personal note - I'd love to see something on the interactions between the Nova Centurions and the Green Lantern Corps. I suspect Richard Rider and Kyle Rayner have a LOT to talk about - - and I'm curious about the Nova Worldmind's take on the sudden proliferation of various-hued ring-slingers in the cosmos (Red Lanterns, Yellow Lanterns, Pink-ringed Star Sapphires, Blue Lanterns - and the as-of-yet unseen Orange and Black Lanterns)

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