Monday, June 19, 2017

365 Days of Defiance, Day 170: Tempus Fugitive

Tempus! He's a guy made out of clock ice or crystalized time or somethin' and while he's certainly not one of the Fantastic Four's most famous foes, he gave 'em a good fight back in the funkadelic seventies. And it's all due to Willie Lumpkin having a gambling problem, which I'm not gonna explain. There's no...ah ha ha ha ha...time.

Panels from "Cataclysm!" in Giant-Size Fantastic Four #2 (August 1974), script by Gerry Conway, layouts by John Buscema, finishes by Chic Stone, colors by Stan Goldberg, letters by Joe Rosen

Mind you, this is an adventure that took place in Marvel's double-paged Giant-Size series of the mid-70s, so, like Marvel Annuals of the period, they were all self-contained stories (and eventually, all reprints). So I don't blame you if you had ignored or didn't read this story. But hey, look: Mister Fantastic in William Shatner's aging makeup from "The Deadly Years." He's old, y'all!

How will the wolf FF survive? Well, by that little-known secret weapon of the Fantastic Four, one you don't get to see in action too often but never forget it's a powerhouse: the rocky orange brain of Benjamin J. Grimm!

Hey Thing, what time is it? Ah, never mind: you're way ahead of me.

The punches themselves aren't sufficient to defeat Tempus (the deliciously quiescent summertime cooling treat), but it does give Reedd enough time to fire up his big rubber brain and come up with a truly brilliant plan, which is...oh, for Pete's sake, Reed, you're just punching him again! Ben already came up with that plan!

Yay! Success! Altho' reed, always a bringer-downer, reminds the FF and Willie Lumpkin, time-travelin' mailman, that like Santa and that chocolate cake that was sitting this morning on the kitchen counter, there's a little bit of Tempus is inside all of us. In fact, you might even say we just ate Tempus, and he's in our stomachs...right now! AHAHAHAHAHAHA!...Wait, scratch that one.

I can't use my usul joke of "And nobody ever saw Tempus ever again" here, because he has quite a wide-ranging, if ineffective, history of time-related villany across the Marvel Universe. Later on, he fought Thor, the West Coast Avengers, some guys from various What Ifs, Rick Jones, and the Annihilators. I'm imagining that at any moment in the Marvel Universe Gwenpool will be pantsing him. So yeah, getting introduced in a Giant-Size has decreasing returns for villainy over the years.

1 comment:

Blam said...

You'll never convince me Peter Bagge didn't travel back through time and draw Thing in that "I'm breakin' apart!" panel.