The Combined DCU-Marvel Universe thread

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Post by greycrusader » Thu Jan 08, 2009 7:18 am

Libra wrote:
/

Grey Crusader, excellent work on the Avengers/Justice League relationship. It has given me a bit of an idea and I confess that I suspect that I fall into the Four-Colour camp a bit too firmly at times for Charles' taste, so it's good to see him get his dose of something a bit Grittier.

I'd be interested in seeing you post your thoughts on the HED! Megaverse thread. :D

(By the way I'd also like to talk to you about my articles on The Iron Age of Freedom in Charles' characterisation thread and my Merged U articles on the 90s of Heroic Earth, please?.

You seem to be good at working with that era of comics and I confess myself a little unsuited to the era. If you have any time to do so, that is.)
Libra:

Feel free to PM me on this.
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Post by Libra » Thu Jan 08, 2009 1:44 pm

Thank you. :D
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Post by tm80401 » Fri Jan 09, 2009 9:04 am

Speaking as a happy consumer of your works, you guys do GOOD.

Can we assume that, power wise, all the characters are pretty standard?

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Post by Charles Phipps » Fri Jan 09, 2009 9:07 am

tm80401 wrote:Speaking as a happy consumer of your works, you guys do GOOD.

Can we assume that, power wise, all the characters are pretty standard?
The Combined Universe is more inclined to a M&M interpretation of their powers than "Superman moves the Moon on his own." Which I think is pretty accurate.

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Post by tm80401 » Fri Jan 09, 2009 9:11 am

Charles Phipps wrote:The Mighty Thor
In short, it is possible to push the Mighty Thor too far and then all Valhalla breaks loose.
I think you mean 'all Niffelheim breaks loose'. valhalla breaking lose would be like saying all heaven breaking loose. I don't think that's what you were going for.

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Post by Charles Phipps » Fri Jan 09, 2009 9:13 am

tm80401 wrote:I think you mean 'all Niffelheim breaks loose'. valhalla breaking lose would be like saying all heaven breaking loose. I don't think that's what you were going for.
Well, I point out that all the Blessed Souls of Valhalla breaking loose is a lot less peaceful than the ones in the Christian Heaven.

BTW, this is canon for the Combined Universe.

http://nodwick.humor.gamespy.com/ffn/st ... -01-07.jpg
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Post by tm80401 » Fri Jan 09, 2009 9:17 am

Charles Phipps wrote:
tm80401 wrote:I think you mean 'all Niffelheim breaks loose'. valhalla breaking lose would be like saying all heaven breaking loose. I don't think that's what you were going for.
Well, I point out that all the Blessed Souls of Valhalla breaking loose is a lot less peaceful than the ones in the Christian Heaven.
I did think about that after I hit submit, but whadyagonnado?

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Post by Charles Phipps » Fri Jan 09, 2009 1:26 pm

Black Adam

The first thing you need to understand is the universe exists to hurt Black Adam. The second thing you need to understand is that every time Black Adam tries to do the right thing, it will backfire on him horribly. The third thing is that, despite this, he will try to do the right thing and the results will be painful to those around him as well as himself.

Black Adam is still being punished for his first sin. In the days of Ancient Egypt, the definition of being a hero was slightly different. A hero was expected to assume rulership of the people beneath him and provide them protection in exchange for favors. Justice was harsh and brutal with criminals given the same treatment as foreign invaders. By the standards of his day, Black Adam was a reasonably progressive ruler.

The circumstances in which Black Adam and Shazam parted company really are almost irrelevant to his mind now. Black Adam prefers to dwell on the past before his fall from grace. When he was King of a Mighty Nation, he was respected by his people, and everything was right in the world. Before Theo Adam, before Isis and Biayala.

Black Adam, himself, is the strongest super being in the world with the possible exception of Captain Marvel. The Hulk, Superman, the Mighty Thor at his usual power levels, and others can defeat Black Adam but he draws upon the whole of a pantheon for his power and his confidence allows him to channel energy well beyond most human's imaginations. This power makes him arrogant but he has reason to be.

Black Adam, despite his great capacity for evil, is not evil himself. He has a strong code of honor and his anger is always at things that would push normal men well beyond their limits. The 'massacre' at Biayala was not his doing alone. While he slaughtered every member of Intergang and their corrupt government allies, it was Intergang that launched the atomic and biological weapons that killed nearly the entire country's population. A failed gambit to stop Teth-Adam. Of course, you just try explaining that to the Justice League.

Black Adam's goals in life are fairly simple but his emotional damage makes his pursuit of them very difficult. He wants to be respected as a leader and a hero. He wants to help the people of Khandaq first and the world second. Black Adam wants to end his soul crushing loneliness. Unlike say, Doctor Doom, these are genuine rather than claimed. Power is almost an afterthought to Black Adam. It's the adoration of people he desires rather than the fealty.

Really, in Earth-777, Black Adam has almost no friends. His impulsive actions in Biayala have given people the impression he's a murderer on par with Ultron or the Cyborg Superman. Captain Marvel wants to try and help Black Adam but Teth-Adam interprets this as torturing him on behalf of the late Shazam. The only place he's even remotely welcomed is Asgard where Thor cautiously extends a hand of friendship to the Egyptian god's champion.

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Post by Libra » Fri Jan 09, 2009 1:48 pm

I'd almost say "Poor Teth-Adam" - if not for what happened in - and to - Bialya. He may not have been the sole contributor, but he was responsible for many a death by his own hands and I don't think they were all guilty.

I'm curious Charles: How do you picture the late Wizard Shazam? I've always considered him the epitome of the kindly old wizard - with a bit of an Old Testament bent (The only actor who even entered my head for casting was Charlton Heston) - and probably more human than the rest of the Quintessence combined.

But I'm curious about your take on the old fellow. When you have any ideas on the matter could you post them please?
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Post by Charles Phipps » Fri Jan 09, 2009 1:52 pm

I'd almost say "Poor Teth-Adam" - if not for what happened in - and to - Bialya. He may not have been the sole contributor, but he was responsible for many a death by his own hands and I don't think they were all guilty.
I prefer Teth-Adam's guilt to be, primarily, due to the fact that he triggered a situation that resulted in all of the deaths rather than randomly murdering innocent people. At least in Earth-777. It's a sin of titanic proportions through irresponsible anger. Undoubtedly, he didn't give any of the Biyalan army any quarter either.
But I'm curious about your take on the old fellow. When you have any ideas on the matter could you post them please?
I'll see what I can do.

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Post by Charles Phipps » Fri Jan 09, 2009 2:07 pm

Shazam

Earth has been blessed with a number of truly great mystics over the years. Not as many heroes, in general, but some truly powerful cross-dimensional figures. Doctor Stephen Strange, Doctor Kent Nelson, Doctor Victor Von Doom, the Ancient One, and the wizard Shazam. Their successors have been somewhat less successful in replicating their mighty abilities but the first of these awesome figures was undoubtedly Earth's First Sorcerer Supreme.

The origins of Shazam are lost in the mists of time, though some believe that he is of Pre-Judeaic Hebrew origin due to his close ties to King Solomon. Others point to his association with pagan deities to dismiss this. In any case, one day, Shazam showed up to the court of Pharoah Ramses II and was accepted into his ranks. A kindly figure who was gifted with sorcery above and beyond any other.

Shazam is currently dead but that state does not mean the same thing to wizards like he that it does to ordinary mortals. As Yoda would put it, luminous beings we are rather than this crude matter. Elevated to godhood by Mister Miracle (who sacrificed his own divinity to him) and a member of the Quintessence, Shazam could undoubtedly return himself to life if he desired. For the time being, he is involved in loftier matters. Like the Ancient One, his continued state of death is to allow his chosen successor time to grow into his own man.

Shazam's greatest quality is his humility and wisdom rather than his power. Why did he choose a young boy to become Captain Marvel? Only a child's mind was open enough to accept the knowledge that the ancient magician was interested in bestowing upon him. Shazam's help allowed Billy Batson to grow into his power and responsibility, a quality that few mortals are allowed the luxury of. Shazam seeks no power for himself. Even Doctor Doom could not defeat the wizard if he desired it. On the Rock of Eternity, he lives simply and explores magic for the sake of learning rather than strength.

Shazam is not perfect, though. Many of his decisions seem to be arcane to those outside of his world and have often illicited anger from folk like Superman or even Wonder Woman. They believe Shazam should be as they are, a super hero. Shazam can only 'tut tut tut' at this. His power is so great that he could enslave humanity or change them utterly but he could not be their champion. Instead, he prefers to nudge them along the right path and encourage good men to inspire rather than strip them of their free will. It is enough, for Shazam, to oppose beings like the Seven Deadly Sins or his wayward offspring (Lord Satanus and Blaze) than try and solve all the worlds problems for them.

Some have speculated that, since the Rock of Eternity is outside of time, that it is wrong to speculate that Shazam is actually from the distant past. In fact, a champion from the future seemed to indicate that the Rock of Eternity's guardian was destined to be Captain Marvel. Except, if it is outside of time then there is no past or present. Some speculate that underneath that gray beard may well be a figure very strongly resembling Billy Batson...

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Post by greycrusader » Fri Jan 09, 2009 8:39 pm

First, a quick "thanks' to Charles for expressing my own take on the Black Adam/Bialya genocide: if I ever got to write the character, I'd clarify that the innocent citizens were slaughtered by Death Incarnate and Intergang weaponry; Black Adam's guilt was in not breaking off combat and fleeing the nation.

Mostly enjoyed 52, but Black Adam would never kill innocent women and children. Did the writers just forget the superb origin he was given in JSA? He forsook his oath against killing because showing mercy to Vandal Savage allowed the slaughter of defenseless women and children, including his own family.

Talk about character assasination...hey wait! That gives me an idea for a villain: The Character Assassin, whose Inconstancy Bullets make their targets act wildly out of character. He was hired once to shoot a certain mutant of gypsy descent...
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Post by greycrusader » Fri Jan 09, 2009 8:40 pm

Double Post.
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Post by Charles Phipps » Fri Jan 09, 2009 9:16 pm

Well, since people didn't like the old adaptation. Here's a slightly less cynical take. I'm a huge fan of Tony and don't want people thinking I dislike him.

Iron Man II

What do you do when you're the smartest man in the world? Oh, Reed Richards has more raw computing power. Doctor Doom is capable of thinking in the 8th dimension where screaming untold horrors lie. About the only man who can match him chess piece for chess piece is Lex Luthor. However, Tony Stark is the man who says "I envision clean fusion power for every house in America. Let's do that for lunch."

Culturally, Earth-777 has only had about 15 years to adapt to Stark Technology. That means it pretty much resembles our own world. Given more time, that won't be the case very much longer. While some of it is reverse engineered from Skrulls and Kree technology, Stark is the man who made hyperdrive capable starships produced by the planet Earth possible. He made the hellicarrier. He created the sonic guns that SHIELD and other agencies use instead of bullets. The technology isn't practical to put everywhere across America just yet but your television picture has never looked more clear thanks to Stark Tech.

Tony Stark will, by the end of the 21st century, have contributed as much to human learning and advancement as Thomas Edison, Alan Turing, Henry Ford, and Alexander Graham Bell. That is, if people would just *@^#* let him. Tony Stark has been through a series of business ups and downs that make Stark Industries stock prices look like a heart monitor. An appopriate analogy for Stark Industries' tycoon.

Part of the issue is that Tony Stark is a man that is guided by morality rather than business. Stark Industries barely survived moving from munitions to communications technology, electronics, medical equipment, and other non-lethal devices (though he still produces plenty of items for the United States military). That instability allowed Obadiah Stane to take over Tony's company and later Fujikawa Industries. Two hostile takeovers in ten years makes investors antsy. This is in addition to the amount of superhuman terrorism that the company has suffered from all manner of sources.

In truth, Tony Stark would probably have a lot less trouble if he just stuck to the laboratory. He's a financial genius but even he doens't know his own limits and tries to do everything himself. The fact that no single human being can be the world's greatest inventor, financial leader, and a super hero in one is a fact that is difficult for Tony to reconcile. Lex Luthor, his opposite number in most respects, proves this very fact by the similiar amount of troubles that he routinely goes through.

If Tony has one fatal flaw, it's the fact that he's always going to try to do the right thing and this will often end up being utterly bull headed. His attempt to destroy all Stark Armor technology in hands not his own, his execution of the Kree Supreme Intelligence for omnicide, and the utter debacle in trying to control the Civil War (what actually was going on in his brain and his plans for Registration ended up being utterly different from what happened. He's also been badly misrepresented in many media and is currently sueing somic comic editors).

Still, Tony Stark has always managed to bounce back and his zest for life is something that drives him forward. Tony loves being a super hero and his joy at trying to make the world better is infectious to his team mates. Unfortunately, as long as Captain America is dead, the Avengers will be without their heart. As long as Tony is estranged from the team, they will not only lack their brains but their soul.

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Post by greycrusader » Fri Jan 09, 2009 9:48 pm

Continuing on the relations between Earth-777's most renowned super-teams...

Appearances aside, it isn't as if the Avengers and the Justice League didn't respect each other; everyone on both teams respected Cap (Steven Rogers) and Superman. Even Batman begrudingly admired Captain America's leadership and tactical skills (his physical prowess was dismissed as "a chemical byproduct"). It rankled Batman that the "rules" agreed to by each during "official" team-ups put CA in charge of field ops. But deep inside, the Dark Knight knew this was the right decision. Thor genuinely liked Superman, the more than mortal who devoted his life to Midgard. The Thunder God was slightly disappointed in Kal-El's lack of battle skills and naive attitude, but figured the youth would improve in a few hundred years. The Prince of Asgard also has an eye for Wonder Woman, even though a brawling Norseman was not her cup of tea. WW always found Simon Williams charming in a clueless, bumbling way, though she sometimes teased him a bit much. He never really caught on.

The Flash got along with everyone (except Quicksilver, enough of a jerk to carry on a one-sided rivalry). Hawkman and Hawkwoman were fast friends with with Hawkeye (maybe just to irk GA), Thor, and especially Ms. Marvel. The Vision almost "adopted" the more hapless Red Tornado as a kid brother, helping RT realize early on that Kathy Sutton and Traya didn't need a human being in their lives, just a good man. RT repaid the favor when his more advanced diagnostic systems found the "stealthware" Ultron had implanted in the Vision. (Ultron got a little visit from the two-along with the Metal Men, Aaron Stack, Jocasta, and others from the "inorganic community'-Ultie got the message). Zatanna befriended the Scarlet Witch, tutoring her in real magic, introducing her to pureblood Homo Magi such as Agatha Harkness, and helping thwart a mystical kidnapping of Wanda and the Vision's boys.

Earth-777 faced numerous threats thad demanded the two groups combine forces. During Galactus' first assault on Earth, the JLA along with Iron Man and Thor kept numerous threats launched from Galactus' World-Ship from reaching planetfall; the ground bound team members faced the Devourer's "Punisher" cadres to give the Fantastic Four and Doom Patrol time to bring an end to the menace.

The first Skrull invasion of the planet was exposed when Batman tipped off the Avengers about his deductions ("I don't really like your team...but the public only needs to fear one hero. That would be me.) The Skrull's plans fell apart with their infiltraion of media and politics exposed. Then Superman, J'onn, and the GL Corps (led by Hal, of course) tied up the Kree armada while the Avengers dealt with the Skrull fleet.

Later, when the Sinestro Corps hit Earth, the GL Corps and the JL were paid back in full for their previous assistance. Prime found out magic hammers DO NOT "tickle"-when they're backed by a Norse God wearing his Belt of Strength; Captain Marvel (Monica Rambeau) was zipping about all over the battlefield, soaking up the juice from the Sinestro rings and then putting Prime down for the count with a blast of red solar radiation. Cyborg-Superman found out what every other tech-villain over the years has learned: don't mess with Tony Stark. Sadly for Sinestro, fear was just nowhere to be found that fateful day.

But still...there have always been too many personality clashes for the teams to really be friends. Captain America couldn't understand why a man of Batman's gifts wanted to frighten and bully people, rather than inspire them.Hercules never forgot the beat-down he received from Superman when the Olympian decided to share "The Gift"-he had never been so humbled by a mortal.Diana always saw right through Hank Pym in any guise-a good but weak and insecure man.

The young T'Challa was intermittently involved with Nubia, the "African Wonder Woman", for whom Diana had no love lost. Some of the more cosmopolitan Avengers (all New Yorkers) thought snidely of Barry Allen, Ralph Dibney, and Ray Palmer as small town rubes. Batman never got over being suspicious of ex-thief Hawkeye and ex-KGB agent Black Widow. Gotham's Finest almost went into a cold rage when the Avengers allowed "that unimaginative, jumped-up thug" Moon Knight into their ranks. Hal Jordan tried to bark orders at Avengers the way he knew r he couldn't do with the other Justice Leaguers. Tony pegged GL as a guy who would be just an employee at Stark Industries.

And Quicksilver was still a jerk.
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