Saturday, April 16, 2005
Lame-ass villain #3 - Man-Elephant
The Man-Elephant is one of those characters that is so lame you just cannot believe somebody came up with them - until you realize that said character appears in a book called The Savage She-Hulk. Puts it in perspective, doesn't it?
First appearing in 1981 in The Savage She-Hulk #17, the Man-Elephant was Manfred Haller, an inventor and hydraulic inventor who created a suit of rubberized power armor that used advanced hydraulics to increase the wearer's strength.* Here's where they lose me: Haller designs the suit to look like an elephant, complete with tusks and a grappling trunk.
What the fuck...? Why would you do that? That's like GM designing a new SUV and deciding, "You know what? We should go one step further and spend a ton of money to decorate this vehicle like a big rhino!"
To prove the suit's power, Man-Elephant takes on She-Hulk and beats her up for a while before having a change of heart. You see, Haller realizes his elephant suit could be used for evil. Or at the very least cheapened by tractor-pull demonstrations at county fairs.
I would be embarassed if I was a hero and I got my ass handed to me by Man-Elephant. You should probably just hang up the spandex at that point. But, She-Hulk is resilient, so she soldiers on. You'd have to be a trooper, really, if you were a woman that everyone called "She-Hulk." From where I come from, that's a rude thing to say to a lady.
*My thanks to The Appendix to the Handbook of the Marvel Universe for actually having a Man-Elephant entry. God bless the people that took the time to put that together.