[Superman Fan Club] Presents! Challenge of the Secret Society of Super-Fans!
Welcome to Week 3 of a very special challenge / contest , reading one single issue a week (as they are digitally published that is) of THE SECRET SOCIETY OF SUPER-VILLAINS #1-14.
This time around: THE SECRET SOCIETY OF SUPER-VILLAINS #3, continuing with the history-making series started by Gerry Conway, then carried on by other writers like David Anthony Kraft, along with artist Pablo Marcos at this point…and the return of Darkseid and the New Gods / 4th World for the first time since Kirby left DC in the mid 70s!
To join the [Superman Fan Club] (and enjoy the chic benefits of membership such as direct messaging for club members only and our occasional audio Discord [Superman Fan Club] chats), click here: Click Here to Join the Superman Fan Club
And be sure keep an eye out for our once a month first Thursday evening of the month Listen A Longs of the classic 1940’s Superman Radio Show adventures (in the Watchalong aisle). The next one is planned for Thursday October 6th!
Seriously, though, if the question is about how I feel regarding humans serving the alien gods of Apokolips then I’m alright with it. Darkseid mentions that he’s always used Intergang as human agents. My personal theory is that Mantis’ henchmen are converts of Glorious Godfrey’s Justifier church (from Forever People #3).
Something about the way they talked felt like religious zeal.
I found it convincing enough. Darkseid is the kind of tyrannical evil whose motives would get in the way of the ambitions of some of our villains. Darkseid is the master and anyone who serves under him is a thrall. I can’t see either Grodd or Star Sapphire bending the knee to him willingly. However, it’s a bit harder to justify with street level villains like Captain Cold, Captain Boomerang, Mirror Master, and Hi-Jack. They commit crime strictly for profit, so why risk your neck against some cosmic deity? That being said, you can’t steal things if there’s no Earth to steal them from and there’s that gang mentality of “you mess with one of us then you mess with all of us.” So, I was convinced enough.
I did like the fact that Sinestro and The Wizard were hesitant. That felt like a good touch to help with the convincing. Though, I will admit that this took me a second to understand:
I was like, “Wait… Wizard isn’t from Earth?” Eventually, my brain settled back into Pre-Crisis mode and I was like, “Ohhhh… Wizard is not from THIS Earth. He’s from Earth-2 and this is Earth-1… Right, right.”
The Secret Society’s opening volley in the final showdown gave me a good chuckle. Here we have Mantis who is an energy-parasite so powerful that he has held his own against the cosmic might of the Infinity Man, and the Secret Society hits him with… a boomerang and what seems to be a regular deck of cards:
It was also funny in the first fight when Manhunter was begging everyone to attack him as a team only to say “to heck with it” and launch his own, individual attack against Mantis. All laughing aside, though, it was great that they were able to pull together and take him down as a team.
We can’t get Jack Kirby to draw it, so let’s get one of his inkers. Joe Sinnott? No the other guy, Vince Colletta. eeeep!
I think the villains would combine to fight Darkseid because if he takes over, there will be nothing to steal. Star Sapphire does have the right idea, let’s get one of the people who do it for free to show up. I wonder if they had Hal show up because his relaunch in Green Lantern #90 was happening at the time.
I also enjoyed the Sinestro/ Wizard cool kid cabal making sure they are on the winning side. The fight was all right, but in these villain books I’m always in it for the backstabbing and conniving.
Catwoman’s disappearance is explained in the letter column as “something happened between the scripting and the inking.”
Since Darkseid was a relatively new character at the time, the villains who were about to fight him very likely had no idea what they would be dealing with. In that respect, I did find it convincing.
I could see someone like Mantis having human lackeys if only to assert his power and prove what he can do. Of course, having such people willing to do your bidding is Villainy 101, certainly with the costumes they wear.
I was a tad disappointed we didn’t yet see Green Lantern do battle with Mantis, but there’s still plenty of time for that.