The Fanzing Challenge:
by Michael Condon
1. What was the name of the very human android that T.O. Morrow and Professor Ivo designed to infiltrate and then destroy the JLA?
A. Mark Antaeus
B. Tomorrow Woman
C. Amazing Man
D. Captain Amazing
2. Why did C.O.M.P.U.T.O. go bad in current continuity?
A. C.O.M.P.U.T.O. wound up being so many degrees of intelligence greater than humanity, including Brainiac 5, that he felt no loyalty to the human race but rather saw them as lab rats for his experiments.
B. Brainiac 5 created C.O.M.P.U.T.O. by modifying a mother box. Unfortunately, that particular mother box had been corrupted by Intergang as part of an attempt to corrupt Superman. Not surprisingly, a corrupt mother box gave rise to an evil computer.
C. Brainiac 5 created C.O.M.P.U.T.O. by modifying the Metal Man Veridium's brain. He decided to destroy humanity in self-defense when Brainiac 5 promised the other Metal Men that he would restore C.O.M.P.U.T.O. to his human level intelligence.
D. Brainiac 5 "borrowed" the components for C.O.M.P.U.T.O .from his ancestor Vril Dox, leader of L.E.G.I.O.N. Unfortunately, those particular circuits had imprisoned the Computer Tyrants of Colu. C.O.M.P.U.T.O is the computer tyrants amped up by 30th Century science.
3. In current continuity, why can't Dr. Magnus mass produce human level intelligent super-robots?
A. In one of the most controversial comics ever written, at least as controversial as one can get concerning a feature that has seen little play in the last twenty-five years, Mike Carlin portrayed Will Magnus as a cyberneticist who was upstaged by his brilliant younger brother. Once he discovered that his brother had designed self-aware robots made out of nano-machines which allowed them to change their forms, he killed him in a jealous rage, hid the body and took credit for his work. He managed to do this before the robots had imprinted on a leader. Unfortunately for him, his brother's work was so advanced that he couldn't satisfactorily copy it even after reading his brother's notes.
B. Dr. Magnus had been hired by Vandco to create robots that could take the place of humans in dangerous situations. The prototypes worked well, but had some bugs. The CEO of Vandco, Savion La Vand, ordered that each of the robots be destroyed by dumping them into a vat of elemental material. Dr. Magnus was understandably confused by this, especially since one of the elements was mercury, an element with too low a boiling point to adversely affect his creations. He was still more confused when his C.E.O., came to oversee his work dressed in a cloak covered with mystical symbols, split a rock that he called the philosopher's stone into six pieces and threw each into one of the vats and started chanting in a guttural unearthly language. The last straw came when humanoid figures emerged from each of the vats and Savion La Vand ordered them to help him conquer the world. Doc Magnus then realized that Savion La Vand was really JSA foe Vandal Savage. Doc Magnus pleaded with his creations to fight on behalf of humanity and won them over to his cause. Since they were created by an amalgam of magic and science, no one who isn't adept at both can create a robot just like the Metal Men.
C. The Metal Men were created on a night that had unusual Aurora Borealis activity. The energy from the Northern Lights added something that Doc Magnus was never able to duplicate.
D.Doc Magnus's brother was conducting an experiment that sought to bring robotics to the next level. He tried to download his brainwaves into a robot made of unstable molecular material in order to give it stability and increase its intelligence. In true comic form the experiment went horribly wrong and Magnus's brother, all of the other scientists, the janitor and some poor mook who came by to deliver pizza had their brainwaves permanently absorbed into the robots. Their bodies went into comas and at Doc Magnus's command, repressed the memories they received from their human templates. Doc Magnus could make more Metal Men, but the moral costs were appalling.
4. What is the Metal Men's foe Chemo's Silver Age origin?
A. Professor Ramsey Norton created a twenty foot tall clear plastic mold to store the refuse from his failed attempts to benefit humanity through chemicals. (Hazardous waste laws were apparently much weaker in the 60's.) He hoped that this reminder of his failures would goad him to success. Unfortunately, all of those chemicals spontaneously generated an evil intellect, self-locomotion and the ability to spew chemicals that had various effects, some plausible: acids; some not: growth inducing liquids.
B. All of the chemicals dumped into a lake by an unscrupulous chemical company pooled together and formed a humanoid body guided by an evil intellect. Chemo wanders from chemical company to chemical seeking sustenance. It destroys anything else in its way.
C. Garguax created him in one his many attempts to conquer the earth.
D. The United States government, pleased at Dr. Magnus's success with the Metal Men, asked him to create a chemical based robot. Dr. Magnus's assistant was a spy for an unnamed power, but given the time period, it was definitely the Soviet Union, sabotaged the robot's programming so that it turned evil.
5. Why wasn't T.O. Morrow able to duplicate his success with the Red Tornado?
A. T.O. Morrow stole the plans for the Red Tornado from an unknown point in the future through his fourth-dimensional grapple beam. The plans got destroyed in the ensuing battle with the JLA and the JSA and he couldn't remember the time and space co-ordinates where he got the plans.
B. The Red Tornado doctored his creator's notes so that an evil version of him would not be created.
C. After being killed by the Spirit King, Mr. Terrific refused to go on to his final reward. He floated around Earth -2 ineffectually until he eavesdropped on T.O. Morrow's plot to use an android to destroy the JLA and the JSA. He sensed that the android's brain was sophisticated enough to accept a soul and decided to merge with it even though he would lose his memory in the hopes that the goodness in his heart would be enough to make the Red Tornado rebel against its programming. Mr. Terrific's spirit is what allows the Red Tornado to battle on even when a robot's logic would dictate surrender.
D. The alien Tornado Champion was intrigued by T.O. Morrow's creation, the Red Tornado, and wound up merging with the android when he went to get a closer look. The shock of the experience destroyed his memory, but left his fighting spirit intact, giving the original Red Tornado an advantage over his programmed successors.
6. Which futuristic adventurer had the disconcerting habit of regularly pawning his robotic companion Ilda?
A. Tommy Tomorrow.
B. Star Hawkins.
C. Captain Comet.
D. Gary Concord.
7. Before he decided to give up his vast power, the android Hourman was able to channel almost infinite power through which device?
A. The Infinite Hourglass.
B. The Worlogog.
C. The Miracle Machine.
D. Sargon the Sorcerer's Ruby of Life.
8. What was the pre-Crisis Amazo's greatest wish? (Note, when this wish conflicted with what Professor Ivo wanted, Professor Ivo's programming won out.)
A. To replace all of humanity with robotic clones.
B. To pass as human.
C. To be accepted as member of the Justice League of America.
D. To be left alone to sleep in peace.
9. "He" was the first graduate of Robot Tech, an institute for higher learning designed exclusively for mechanical men. He went on a variety of adventure and decades after he was first formed he settled down to marry the beautiful, (if you go for oversized egg-shaped heads) Ilda. Who is he?
D. Colonel Computron.
10. The Metal Man Tin designed his own robotic girlfriend. As disturbing as that may sound, more disturbing still was the name he chose for her. What was it?
B Platinum II.
C. Yes, Dear.
11. Before creating the Green Lantern Corps, the Guardians of the Universe used androids to enforce their will. What was the name of these androids?
12.What secret identity did Hourman III choose for himself?
A. Trip Hammer. Millionaire crusading reporter with Ph.D.s in Chemistry and Physics whose parents were killed by criminals.
B. A janitor at Tylerco.
C. A teenage vagrant with extremely bushy hair.
D. He became an exact duplicate of Snapper Carr.
1. B. Mark Anateus, like Tomorrow Woman, was a one-shot hero. He cracked under the pressure of being in the JLA. Amazing Man I was an African American hero retcomnned into the All Star Squadron by Roy Thomas. Amazing Man II was a member of Extreme Justice and the incarnation of Justice League Europe that was destroyed by the female Mist. Both had the power to absorb the properties of any material they touched.
3. D. C is the Silver Age reason.
4. A. Gargaux was an alien Doom Patrol villain who attacked the Earth with thousands of automatons in his first appearance..
5. D. T.O. Morrow did own a fourth-dimensional grapple beam though.
6. B. Gary Concord is Ultra Man's birth name. Ultra Man was a scientist who developed a chemical weapon so terrible that war wouldn't exist anymore. (His first appearance was written well before the creation of the atom bomb and the cold war. Another interesting thing about that story is that it supported an isolationist policy concerning World War II.) Unfortunately, he completed his work on the same day that the United states was attacked by an enemy power. His lab was bombed and all of his chemicals ran together to form a foam that kept him in suspended animation until the late 22nd century and increased his strength and constitution to super-human levels. He became a super-hero for the future who tended to rely on his scientific genius.
8. D. A seems to have become his interest during his appearances in Hourman.
All characters are DC Comics
This piece is © 2001 by Michael Condon.
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