|Marvel Universe >> View Post|
Subj: Underworld Unleashed 2: Unleash Harder
Posted: Sun Mar 22, 2009 at 05:53:48 am EDT (Viewed 76 times)
Reply Subj: Re: I need to get in on this.
Posted: Thu Mar 19, 2009 at 08:28:51 pm EDT (Viewed 7 times)
Finally finished, and worked on a premise of just letting the ideas come to me, and "if I had an idea, it went in there, no matter how bad/sick/wrong it was" (and thanks to Patrick D Ryall for the Uncle Ben idea). With that in mind, people who are easily offended by things should probably not read any of this.
> Back in 1995, DC had a rather fun little crossover called Underworld Unleashed. The basic premise was that the Devil -- Neron, introduced for the whole shebang -- was trading villains power for their souls. With the villains already, well, villainous and therefore likely damned, many of them took the deals. (Plenty of villains didn't, for reasons ranging from common sense to not considering themselves villainous to pure discomfort.)
> To boost his cred, he had a council of five truly vile rogues who were removed from the action but had made their own deals: Lex Luthor, the Joker, Circe, Doctor Polaris, Abra Kadabra. Ultimately, as Neron planned, Luthor and the Joker tricked the other three on the council into a pontless attempt to usurp their Satanic host's power to eliminate their competition, and were in turn stopped by Neron himself with some pre-planned trickery before the World's Vilest Team could actually find a way to steal his supernatural might.
> And the heroes, confronted by waves of amped-up villains, were then all the riper for Neron's offers to them...and, in theory, this would have eventually won him the soul of Billy "Captain Marvel" Batson, had Batson (on advice from Neron's treacherous lieutenant the Trickster).
> But the real fun of the crossover was seeing what underused or badly-used villains and heroes succumbed to Neron, what they got, and in the cases of the heroes, especially, what the drawbacks were. (Though it should be noted that a number of villains discovered that deals with the devil have serious drawbacks, too.) Much of the event was about taking Z-list or obscure baddies and finding ways to restore their core concepts or revamp them for better use down the line.
> Your mission, should you choose to accept it? Go to the Wikipedia article for Underworld Unleashed and take a look at what people got for their souls or for their favors -- not all Neron's deals were pure Faustian bargains. And from there, finish the following six(!) steps:
> 1) Pick a Marvel demon to be the baddie behind the crossover, and an ulterior goal they're pursuing beyond "cause evil for fun and souls." Maybe Mephisto wants the Silver Surfer to finally bend to his will, maybe Dormammu's trying to force the new Sorcerer Supreme to take power from him a la Baron Mordo, or maybe the Dweller-In-Darkness wants Daredevil to admit he's scared. Whatever you like, throw it out there.
I'm a firm believer in "if you want to use the Devil, use the Devil", so I'll be using Ghost Rider's arch-foe, who's gone by both "Satan" and "Lucifer". I have no idea if he's also meant to be the demon who's Daimon H*llstrom's father or not, or what current explanation is for the time when Mephisto was inserted into Ghost Rider's origin, and probably easier to just not go near any of that. For all that matters here, this guy is declaring himself The Devil, and has as much claim on it as anybody.
What does he want? The greatest trick the Devil ever pulled may have been convincing the world he doesn't exist, but the plethora of rival H*ll-lords, and a rise in unbelievers isn't doing him any favours, so his goal is a show of power, to make the world behold the proof of his existence, and the establishment of a Dark Kingdom on Earth, into which his son may be rise to rule, and yes, we certainly would be spinning off from this into a later battle between H*llstorm, Blackheart, Nightcrawler and others to determine who would be the one true AntiChrist.
> 2) Pick five MAJOR villains to make deals but otherwise sit out the crossover. You might, say, have the Red Skull sell his soul to get a human body back since he's stuck in an Arnim Zola robot-form now. (Luthor did something similar in the original.) Or perhaps Norman Osborn wants to sell whatever's left of Good Norman off to the devil as Polaris did in the original UU. Yours should be more creative than this, and please, for the love of Zod, don't just use five members of Norman's Evil Illuminati.
In the interests of not picking ones you'd named here, I'm going with...
1) Hate-Monger - the most infamous dictator of the 20th century sells his cloney soul to rise to power again in some nation. Let's make it a real-world nation, for maximum offensiveness. From this, we also launch the tie-in miniseries "Apocalypse vs Hitler", combining a present-day battle with flashbacks detailing their long rivalry across the centuries.
2) Bastion - the leader of the Brotherhood of Evil Humans has all the power he needs, all he wants is to be a real boy (in the interests of returning to the original concept for Bastion, that he's not just some robot).
3) Grim Reaper - once one of the Avengers' greatest foes, now fallen on hard times, having lost his power and motivation, working as a hired henchman. He's no stranger to making deals with demons, joining up to regain the vast mystic power he once had, with the drawback of a slow decay back into his undead form.
4) Sinister - again, no stranger to selling out to more powerful evils, and at this point willing to do anything to regain a body of his own.
5) Maximus - the prince of the Inhumans sacrifices his soul for some sanity, so he can stand tall as a better alternative to his brother for the position of Lunar Leader.
> 3) The FUN part: Pick between 20 and 40 villains to make deals. At least six deals should turn out to have sorta-drawbacks; for two examples from the original UU, Major Disaster gained the pwoer to see the fault lines and flaws in all things...but couldn't turn it off if he didn't want to see how fragile the world around him was, nor could he get a read on himself. And Blockbuster bargained for genius-level intelligence which, once gained, drove him to terrible rage as he realized with it how much more he could've gotten for his soul (not least of which was a non-Neanderthal body).
> Do remember here that your devil has a larger goal, and isn't going to be handing out Cosmic Cubes or Wands of Watoomb to Doctor Doom OR Electro; and whatever's bargained, it should be worth rather less than a soul, since the devil likes to come out on top.
I'm mostly going to use this as an opportunity to take villains I like and try and put them back out there, more than a large number of significant revamps-to-the-point-of-unrecognisability. Most of them were chosen for being people I think of whenever Marvel does a "they're resurrecting that crap character I don't care about, but this cool villain is still gone?"
1) Sabretooth - not out of any great love for Sabretooth, but he's going to come back somehow, some way, so why not by selling his soul for the ability to grow a new head? Sabretooth spends the crossover channelling the spirit of Freddy and Jason to stalk and slay his way through the mutant teens.
2) Omega Red trades his soul for the carbonadium synthesiser, so he can stop hunting it all the time
3) Hobgoblin - back in action as the one true Hobgoblin, Jason Macendale bargains for ninja-fast reflexes to counter his enemies' agility, and to make the Internets finally love him.
4) Underworld - it's got his name in the title, so he's got to show up, or it'd be like the X-Cutioner not being in X-Cutioner's Song. He upgrades by having his gimmick weapons internalised, at a disfiguring cost.
5) Egghead - back from the grave and ready to party, Egghead is reborn as the obsessive arch-nemesis of Hank Pym, to the bemusement of the rest of the supervillain community.
6) Holocaust - the son of Apocalypse makes a trade for a return to Earth, but ends up back in the main Marvel Universe, rather than his native world where he wanted to go, and he tries to burn down the Acolytes' home yet again, in their own super-special, culminating in the returns of Our Lord Magneto and Joseph.
7) Scourge - a new mystery villain, the Scourge From The Underworld appears as a serial killer targetting superheroes, and will be shockingly unmasked as a dead hero who ended up in H*ll.
8) Hydro-Man - granted the intelligence to use his powers more creatively and effectively, but not the ambition to do anything more with them than rob banks and seek revenge on Spider-Man.
9) Rock - the Leader's old henchman returns, granted power over the rocks around him, in addition to his own rocky form. Also, like the real Rock, he also gains fantastic eyebrow powers.
10) Spymaster - let's say the 2nd one faked his death in prison, because the new one's really not working for me at all, and his new power is invisibility to machines, enabling him to work his espionage more effectively than ever.
11) Blacklash - let's say he was replaced by Skrulls, and now is willing to sacrifice his soul not for power, but to revive his dead wife.
12) Fabian Cortez - the Starscream of the Marvel Universe returns, trading his soul for a Wolverine-level healing ability that prevents writers from offing him again
13) Man-Ape - with T'Challa mortally injured, the Man-Ape makes a play for the throne, upping his power to control control over all apes.
14) Taurus - the original incarnation of the Zodiac were the best, and Taurus' death was kind of off-panel, so let's bring him back, and his upgrade can be to make him like he was on the Avengers cartoon, where he was able to actually transform himself from human to minotaur and back.
15) Spidercide - the whole "no-one knows who Spider-Man is" left this clone a very confused man, he just wants his memories back.
16) Firebrand - not the blobular eco-terrorist, but the second one who fought Spidey and the New Warriors. In this case, it's not so much the powers that need a change, as that a guy named "Firebrand" should have a cause that he's fighting for, so he can rock the anti-corporate agenda of his predeccessor, whilst being a secret Satanist as well.
17) Goliath - Erik Josten is a villain again, just because I can, trading his soul for stabilising his powers, enabling him to grow bigger than anyone else who grows, with the drawback that he goes super-crazy again.
18) Cobalt Man - the original and best, sells his soul for a new suit of cobalt armour that's state-of-the-art and a match for an Extremis-level Iron Man. Naturally, this has the drawback of making him even crazier, and the suit will explode bigger and harder than ever before if he wears it for more than a few hours.
19) Mysterio, since Quentin Beck's established as working for some demon master, so why not throw him in here, alive and well, upgraded to have illusion-powers without needing to use technology.
20) Death-Adder - either the original or the new one, it doesn't matter. He gets upgraded into a more man-snake form, so Deadpool can fight the Merc Without A Mouth.
21) Swarm - the man of bees sells his soul to save the bee race from extinction, but tricks the Devil, selling the soul of a single bee.
22) Plantman - regains his human form, at the cost losing all his enhanced Blackheath powers, and keeps the Hulk out of the main plot by drugging him up until he thinks A-Bomb is his baby.
23) Volkhvy - the Eternal One trades the soul of his newest host to restore life to his homeland of Slorenia.
24) Genesis - the crazy-evil son of Cable is back, bargaining for a power that'll be of any use at all in a fight, like, say, anti-matter eye-beams.
25) Hardcore - I don't know much of anything about Luke Cage's 1990s arch-foe, it just amuses me that there's a villain named Hardcore. Fittingly, his upgrade is a stubborn refusal to wear clothes.
26) Post - Onslaught's cyborg lackey scores some giant new guns of Liefeldian proportions, at the cost of losing what little remains of his humanity. His conversation almost entirely consists of informing people exactly how many seconds they have until he fires a power-pod through their cranium.
27) Flag-Smasher - the genuine original walks again, to fight for a united world, figuring he'll have to do something about the "united under the Devil" part once his own goal has been achieved.
28-31) Silver Samurai, Nitro, Steel Serpent & Temugin - all make lesser trades, of loyalty, in exchange for regaining their lost hands. If there's any question over the matter, the above-mentioned Grim Reaper also gets to walk away with both hands. Seriously, what's up with all the villain-maiming?
32) Mammomax - everyone's favourite Brotherhood member is back, rocking a super-healing ability he refers to as his "elephant factor".
33) Blob - Fred Dukes gets his fat powers back, at the cost of having to consume mass quantities to stay fat and powerful.
34) Trapster - he doesn't want any new power, he just wants the world to forget he was ever called "Paste-Pot Pete".
35) Leap-Frog, just because there are no other Daredevil foes here, is revamped as more frog than man.
36) DAEMON - the nautical terrorist group signs up, in exchange for control over the seas, and for revenge against Spider-Woman/Arachne and Moonraker.
37) Grey Gargoyle - gains the ability to animate his stoned victims as his minions
39) Carnage - released back into the world as an agent of chaos, his OG symbiote more powerful and without his vulnerability to fire.
40) Demogoblin - back in action, with the "upgrade" of a new sidekick, an orc with a railgun.
> 4) The POSSIBLY FUN part: pick up to seven heroes or anti-heroes to be maneuvered into ill-advised deals with serious but unforeseen consequences; list the deals and the consequences. Remember, heroes usually don't sell their own souls, so this may be more in the vein of innocuous favors with deadly results, or tempting more antiheroic types to overlook long-term consequences of whatever actions they agree to carry out.
1) Havok, since it's a crossover, and thus requires a Havok heel-turn. He takes up an offer to trade his control over his powers and his sanity for one last shot at taking out his brother, but nobody specified which brother, and suddenly Evil-Havok is running wild on Earth, attacking Cyclops because it's what he does. Cue 'Inferno 3', and a team-up with a re-evilised Frost, (for the sake of a homage to Inferno 1), driven insane by the reveal that Mystique had been impersonating Cyclops for years. It all ends with the villains defeated by Cable, re-powered and back in action as the Mutant Super-Jesus, and the X-Men's new home getting exploded, and everyone forgiving Alex when he claims he was being mind-controlled yet again. Then he turns to Scott and he's all "I got away with it! I got away with it again!", and Xavier walks in like Vince McMahon, takes over the X-Men again and yells "Havok, you're fired!"
2) Quicksilver - in his own "H*ll is other people" one-shot, Pietro struggles not with the Devil so much as the voice of Chthon still in his head, telling him to burn people, and shutting himself away from the world, finally giving me the hermit-superhero I've always wanted to exist so I could identify with them.
3) Ronin - with an angry Scarlet Witch out for revenge, Ronin is offered the chance to re-write the timeline so they never did it, at the cost of losing his archery skills and having to train all over again from Day One, and the hidden cost that he still knows what he did, and now so does his wife.
4) Penance - offered a chance to undo the events which caused Civil War and turned him into Penance, at the cost of never having had powers, he manages to screw it all up again, and hangs himself with his straightjacket.
5) Spider-Man - when Aunt May is mortally wounded in a motorcycle stunt gone wrong, the Devil offers Peter the chance to save her, and all it will cost him is that he'll lose all his friends. Peter takes the deal, and now Harry Osborn and the rest of his supporting cast never even knew him, except Flash Thompson, who is still giving him wedgies, and also becomes the new Stilt-Man. And then Aunt May is run over by An Evil Truck, and Peter makes a deal with Azazel to save her life, at the cost of Peter ever knowing her or Uncle Ben, and time rewrites itself so he was raised by evil nuns in an orphanage.
6-7) Magik and Wonder Man - the Devil reveals to these two that they're not even real people, but soulless mockeries of a pair of dead people, and confirmation that it's an absolute Truth Fact leaves them broken, and join the Devil, leading his gathering of demons. At all points during the crossover when the Devil is plotting his scheme, he'll be depicted in bed with at least one of them, watching 'The Passion of the Jesus' and laughing at all the torture.
> 5) The SADISTICALLY FUN part: Since Neron got to waste the rebellious Mongul in UU #1, pick one Marvel villain you think is overpowered or hasn't received sufficient comeuppance and let your archdemon smash 'em but good in front of the others before making his/her/its pitch.
If it were DC, I'd pick Black Adam so someone would be maiming him for a change, and so we wouldn't have to see him again, but for Marvel, you say "villain who hasn't received sufficient comeuppance" and I immediately think of the alleged original Hobgoblin, Rod Kingsley, enjoying retirement on a beach on some island. Forcibly knock off people's nostalgia-goggles by having Norman out-plot him and Jason out-fight him, then when he refuses to join the Devil's gathering of villains, the Devil beats him to death and makes him cry, setting an example to everyone else to sign up and not step out of line.
> 6) The possibly FUN, POSSSIBLY UN-FUN part: Crossvers gotta end, so how exactly does our master villain fall short, and lose out in the end? What unforeseen factor or sliver of virtue in an otherwise coal-black heart undid the Hell-fiend's plot you explained in part 1?
> There are no prizes, but participants do get to peer into the creative darkness of their own souls.
As the Devil prepares to cross over from H*ll to the real world, and take on human form, his traitor within the ranks of The Initiative (let's say...Ape-Speedball) rigs the Negative Zone portals so they go between Earth and H*ll, to enable the demon armies to invade and take Camp Hammond. During the Intiative's tie-in issue, Tigra and Razorback have sex, and when you open the comic, it plays the theme from Rawhide.
So, the Dark, New, Mighty and Young Avengers come together under the leadership of the Iron Patriot, who has cleared his name by successfully pinning the blame for all of the Green Goblin's crimes on An Evil Truck, to defend the Earth against the Devil's horde of demons and the supervillains and fallen heroes allied with him. Norman Osborn hurls Wonder Man into the Annihilation Area of the Negative Zone, where even energy can be destroyed, and the nation elects him as the next President in gratitude. And then there's some random panel of Namor, in some back-alley in a slum, riding a herring, having a trident-fight with Suma-Ket, that has absolutely nothing to do with the rest of the crossover. The forces of evil kidnap a group of civilian love-interests of superheroes (MJ, Sharon Carter, Daredevil's wife, etc, with this being a good time to clarify if Betty Banner is indeed dead or alive), with the intent of corrupting one of them into being a willing mother to the AntiChrist.
A desperate alliance of men, mutants and robots storm the gates of H*ll itself, but What's the only thing that could stop the Devil himself from taking on human form and fathering the AntiChrist? His old foes, Ghost Rider and Jesus, tag-teamed together again to save the world! While the epic battle rages, the Doom/Kang team-up lurks in the shadows, the unknown factor overlooked by the Devil, and out to steal his power. Doom is down with toppling H*ll-lords on principle, and Kang has never conquered a H*ll-realm yet, so it's all in a day's work for them, but the plan to trap The Devil in the timestream goes wrong, and he's lost somewhere back in time, and in human form.
Even with the Devil gone, the heroes are still vastly outnumbered, and the Ghost Rider/Jesus team turns the tide by calling up Captain America, Jean Grey, Ben Reilly, the OG Vision and Uncle Ben (dressed as Doom Guy, and wielding a chainsaw and chaingun) to lead an army of dead superheroes, some of whom will stick around just because. But Steve can only stay alive if he'll admit Tony was right, and do so on live television.
We let the suspense build for a while, as the superhuman community realises that the Devil walks amongst them, but who could it be? And then the Beyonder returns, gathering heroes and villains alike for Secret Wars 3, only for Colossus to levitate into the sky, looming overhead, the Moon behind him, as dark lightning rains down from his fingers, lashing out at the gathered warriors, and everyone realises it's not Colossus, he was never really resurrected, it's the Devil. The Beyonder takes on the Devil in a spectacular Streetfighter-style battle. In space. Calling out the names of their attacks, breaking the no-sound-in-space barrier because they can. Under the impact of a Beyonder Barrage, the metal skin of Colossus cracks apart and breaks off, revealing the Devil's true form underneath, and the battle rages on, those superhumans that can make it into space joining the struggle, until the Beyonder positions the Devil in just the right place that he's directly in the path of the BreakWorld Magic Bullet as it impacts with the Heroes Reborn Counter-Earth (let's say specifically wherever Jolt happens to be standing). The world that Franklin made dies painfully, and the Beyonder picks up the defeated Devil, hurling him back down to the real Earth, the ground cracks open beneath him, as he falls back into the fiery pit, trapped again. The Beyonder declares himself the winner of the 3rd Secret War, and declares that his prize will be to hold a fourth Secret War at some point in the near future.
Epilogue on Magik, holding a pregnancy test and crying.
Posted with Microsoft Internet Explorer 6 on Windows XP
|Alvaro's Comicboards powered by On Topic™ © 2003-2022 Powermad Software|