Tuesday, August 12, 2008

The Age of Apocalypse

The story: I was urged to create this blogspot thing at the behest of several people, and when creating any blog the computer makes you give your blog a name. I've previously said, "I bet anything someone puts for a blog name is a ropeless tetherball of retarded," but unfortunately 'ropeless tetherball of retarded' was already taken (see: sarcasm).

Well, it just so turned out that the AGE OF APOCALYPSE had been on my mind that day- as it had been (and rightfully so) every day since it came out in early 1995.

For those of you who don't know, the Age of Apocalypse was a four-month long crossover of the X-books which took place in an alternate dimension. Prof. Charles Xavier had died a premature death - thus rendering the Earth ripe for the picking by Apocalypse. (Because the largest obstacles are always hairless paraplegics.)

So I went back to thinking about the Age of Apocalypse and wondering how I could sum it up in one word. That word is 'awesomeness,' but as the same word is often used in any Keanu Reeves role, I knew I had to flesh it out a bit - and 'Awesomeness, whoa,' was not an option. So I wondered - why was the AoA so awesome? Because the writers and artists (and even characters) knew that out of all the components of anything, THE AWESOMENESS IS IMPORTANT. Yet, this still didn't seem to fit quite what I was going for. (After all, this blogspot account is the evolution of www.myspace.com/theawesomenessisimportant, and there's no reason to rest on laurels.)

What makes AoA so awesome, and how would I know? It's not like I was IN the Age of Apocalypse, right? Well, thanks to my good friend (and illustrator) Matt Smith, (not the famous one) Marvel's tragic oversight has been righted. Furthermore, his illustration is proof that even I would be cooler in the Age of Apocalypse. The Age of Apocalypse improves EVERYONE AND EVERYTHING. I'll now hand this over to Matt, who will explain his choices in character design.

Here we go, folks!!! (Matt Smith sez)

  1. I didn't know if you should be a mutant or a human, so with the big robot hand, it could be a glove or your mutant power could be beefy-handedness.
  2. Everybody looks like a bad-ass in a trench coat. It's a scientific fact. Yours has the groovy see-through part because I spent a lot of time working up the anatomy of the figure and didn't want to just cover it up in a coat.
  3. Along with his message of peace between humans and mutants, it's a little-known fact that Charles Xavier's was also a strong voice against facial tattoos. This is evident in the world where he never existed, where something like 80% of the characters in the age of apocalypse had tattoos on their faces, you included.
  4. Razors and shaving cream were among the first casualties of Apocalypse's rise to power, but beard trimmers are plentifully available on every street corner, so sculpted, Buff Bagwell sideburns are an absolute must!
  5. Big-assed rivets have replaced stitches in shirt collars. Even fashion isn't safe from Apocalypse's philosophy of "only the strong survive."
  6. After all of the TV stores were obliterated, a bored nation turned to the most entertaining pastime available: sit-ups.
  7. It's Marvel, everybody's got a metal something now-a-days and while it would be cool to have, I wasn't about to draw you a metal nutsack. So I went to the standard fallback and gave you the pimpy metal arm.
  8. The ripped torso wouldn't show it off very well, so I couldn't use the skull T-shirt I was going to use, you know, the one that made everyone in high school scared of you? Yeah, but I still have it represented in this slightly Gwar-esque belt buckle.
  9. Lastly, you still get to wear your Lugz in age of apocalypse, but for some reason, if one wears boots, his pants have to be tucked into them all army style. Perhaps this offered protection from some danger not revealed in the storyline of the comics…Apoca-rattle-snakes? We may never know.
Kudos, Matt - on a job damn well done.
Couldn't have done it better myself.


For more information on the Awesomeness that is The Original Age of Apocalypse, please check out Age of Apocalypse, Volumes 1-4 (but mostly just Volume 2).

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