Wednesday, April 27, 2016

W: Wonder Man



Today's entry for April's A-Z Blogging Challenge is "W." And my theme is, "Golden Age Comic Book Characters with the Same Name As Modern-Day Characters."

The success of DC's Superman in 1938 started an explosion called the Golden Age of Comics. Superheroes were coming out of the woodwork, you might say, and some were blatant rip-offs of Superman. Comics legend Will Eisner was hired to create such a Superman clone for Wonder Comics #1, from Fox Features in 1939. His Wonder Man, a/k/a Fred Carson, was quickly sued out of existence. It didn't help that Eisner told the truth on the witness stand and admitted that his instructions were to create a Superman clone. (He ended up never getting paid for this particular gig, by the way!)

Years later, in The Avengers #9, 1964, Marvel Comics introduced their own character named Wonder Man. Simon Williams died in that same issue, but (as comics tend to do) was brought back to life years later!



Thanks for your time.

19 comments:

  1. See what happens when people copy ideas instead of creating their own?

    Susan A Eames from
    Travel, Fiction and Photos

    ReplyDelete
  2. Copy cats never prosper....Hmm yeah, that's sure not true. Never mind.

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  3. well, i like that he had a conscience enough to tell the truth. I can understand why they wanted a clone, but it would have been cooler to create a unique character that could rival superman instead.

    i really like the bottom pic of him the best. what's funny is that version actually looks more like superman than the original did!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Will Eisner, the honest artist of the above story, went on to create some of the most lauded comic work of all time. He's best known for a character called The Spirit -- horrible movie adaptation of that came out a few years ago -- and a graphic novel called A Contract with God. Highly recommended.

      And yes, Wonder Man's current look does resemble Superman.

      Delete
  4. Nathan Filion is slated to play Simon Williams in a cameo in the next GUARDIANS OF THE GALAXY. Fun post.

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  5. I like that he was honest enough to admit the copying...might have been better off not copying though, esp if he felt uncomfortable doing so..

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    Replies
    1. He was in his early twenties, in a field that wasn't as widespread as it would be in 2-3 years. Maybe he just needed the work, although he'd been in comics since 1936!

      Delete
  6. Wonder... man? (scratching my head)

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  7. This is a new one for me! I never heard of Wonder Man.

    @Kathleen01930
    Meet My Imaginary Friends
    #AtoZchallenge

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    Replies
    1. He's kind of a secondary hero who's spent time with The Avengers.

      Thanks for stopping by my blog.

      Delete
  8. Wonder Man doesn't really do it for me as a name. He was doomed from the beginning.
    @DoreeWeller from
    Doree Weller’s Blog

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  9. In spite of the troubles Eisner faced, he has a big award named after him today. I hear that winning an Eisner is like winning an Oscar in the comic book/graphic novel arena.

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    Replies
    1. You're so right. Eisner went on to become one of the top comic creators, a prolific genius in what he called "sequential art." Not just comic books.

      I used to work at a comic shop that won an Eisner Award, That's Entertainment in Worcester, Massachusetts.

      Delete
  10. I guess Wonderman became lacklustre man after his debut

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