The 6 Most WTF Special Edition Comics Ever Released
Looking at the baffling products that are spawned from successful franchises it's not surprising that people will also dish out good money for any comic book-like product that features their favorite characters, and we mean absolutely any comic book. It doesn't matter if it's missing insignificant things like a plot, logic or even any entertainment value whatsoever, someone will obviously buy that shit, because the comic book industry just keeps on making them. Stuff like ...
The Marvel Swimsuit Edition
"Fury and Stark are modelling adorable modest low rise bikini briefs and the means to your childhood's destruction."
For the hoards of people who have been disappointed to find that the annual Sports Illustrated Swimsuit Edition was filled with pictures of real life beautiful women instead of animated superheroes, Marvel created the Marvel Swimsuit Special, an annual comic book that provided pictures of superheroes wearing as little clothing as humanly possible and that's about it.
Artistic integri-what now?
For example, we have this cover that shows Rogue too busy looking hot to care that all that exposed skin is legitimately endangering the life of every person and thing she comes across. Sure, she can't even kiss her boyfriend without putting him in a coma for life, but that's no reason not to strut around half naked with Gambit. What's the worst thing that could happen? She drains all of his power? In the bottom of the sea? And kills him?
Instead of wearing a bathing suit, the Fantastic Four's Invisible Woman has chosen to just make parts of her body invisible using her powers. Which is fine, except for the fact that Sue's powers are routed in concentration, which means as soon as she turns around and sees a giant monster behind her, she'll forget to keep making her privates invisible and basically be standing on the beach naked. Also there's a monster.
For a battered 'Nam vet, he has a remarkable absence of scars.
We can't choose the most disturbing thing about this image that has unwillingly been burned into the darkest recesses of our mind. Bad enough seeing the Punisher clad in only a skull-mankini with not only no women in sight he might be trying to impress, but there are also no other human beings anywhere nearby. Instead Frank Castle, one of the angriest, deadliest men in the Marvel universe seems to be trying to get a volleyball game started at a tiny monster orgy. Monsters, we must point out, who are fighting over buying toothbrushes when the only teeth in sight are hanging from the Punisher's crotch. And just like that we are thankful this comic book has no real storyline.
"Wolverine, Thing, Beast, our favorite hulks, mug for the camera in their fabulously flamboyant surfer-inspired baggies."
"And then I want you to draw The Thing looking like he crapped his suit, but also got an erection from it. Can you do that?"
"Could the Sub-Mariner's ferocity reflect some humiliation of having to don such a skimpy little number?"
The Fantastic Four villain, Namor the Sub-Mariner, is one of those fish guys who basically wears a bathing suit for a costume anyway but this is the Swimsuit Special, so Namor pulled out all the stops: He whipped out his formal, gold crotch-necklace, got his hair styled and practiced his best Did-Someone-Order-a-Rape-Party facial expression in front of the mirror all day. You're welcome ladies.
Probably the only thing crazier than the fact that this comic book got released for five straight years, are the fans who wrote in to the editors, in what was basically the comments section of the 90's. We love the bait-and-switch that Letra Bledsoe pulls off, convincing the editors up front that she's writing about their progressive attitude before getting into why she really reached out.
Now why would such a well-balanced woman want her address withheld?
Nothing says "I sincerely applaud your refreshingly equal treatment of men and women" quite like "Can you send me a picture of Thor's butthole?"
Batman: Knight Gallery is actually kind of a cool idea.
It's not as exciting as a straight-up comic book, but it's neat as far as world-building goes. The reader gets to imagine Bruce Wayne is a real guy who stayed up late designing his costume and all of his sweet toys. Handled correctly, a journal of rejected Batman ideas could be a really awesome extended universe artifact.
Too bad they included all of Wayne's commentary, and too bad he's kind of an idiot.
"Maybe make a costume that doesn't look like a costume. Maybe wear cords with a fez."
It turns out that all of the strong and silent mystique that makes Batman so cool and interesting gets thrown out the window when you have to read about him openly wondering if his pointy bat suit might make him look "too fancy." This isn't Bruce Wayne's rejected journal; it's a fashion show. It's Project: Batcave.
"I don't want violent criminals to have any trouble shooting me at night."
That's what you think bats look like? Jesus, no wonder you're so afraid of them.
... less flamboyant Satan, but keep the heels.
What's truly baffling about these designs, apart from the fact that bats aren't red either, are Bruce's comments to himself on each picture. Notes like "drop the shoulder hooks" and "cape impractical" read as though he was seeing the completed drawings for the first time and hadn't just spent hours meticulously sketching, shading and coloring each one. It's little things like this that make you realize Batman truly is just a crazy, rich guy who has some legitimate mental health problems and too much time on his hands.
"Idiot as moron."
Perhaps even crazier than Batman commenting on his own costumes is the way Batman goes about redesigning the Robin costume for his third sidekick, Tim Drake. As it goes along we actually see Batman finally realize after all these years just how impractical and inappropriate Robin's costume really is and it only took one sidekick quitting and another one getting violently murdered to realize it.
A skirt would only look ridiculous in this scenario.
"Should also maybe think about not using Tim Drake's real name over and over again, in case any villains find this. I'll tell Alfred to warn Tim Drake's father, Jack Drake. I'm Bruce Wayne."
"I am going to burn the shit out of this kid!"
Far be it for us to criticize, because Batman surely knows more about Batmanning than we do, but "exposed legs=bad" and "crimefighter should have weapons" feel like realizations that absolutely should not be happening late in the game.
What about this costume, does work, Batman?
Really, it's just the wings that don't work Bats? How about the bright green codpiece? You have no problem with that? Then again, as we see below, Batman's got a weird thing about crotches. As in, he kind of really likes to emphasize and point at them.
"Note to self: Make sure all of the criminals know where the party is."
Marvel's Strength and Fitness Guide (Will Not Get You In Shape)
Medusa, that's really not appropriate.
This is another book that seems like a great idea, because every kid wants to be a superhero. (If you're kid doesn't, you've done a bad job raising it, and we're really sorry you had to find out this way.) This book should theoretically act like a guide for becoming as close to a superhero as possible.
OR, it could just be this totally different thing that's much much worse.
Lifting weights is not bad for you in general, however, what the Marvel Strength and Fitness Guide neglects to tell kids as they lift a deadly metal barbell above their face is how many times they should repeat this exhausting exercise and that they should most definitely, always do this with a spotter so they don't, you know, crush themselves when their arms get tired. We can't help but picture some poor kid in the 70's working out alone in his basement with a goal of being a crimefighter, only to have his trusty barbell fall on his face and disfigure him in such a way he has no choice but to become a supervillain.
Is anyone else suddenly nauseous?
Next, Marvel gets to the basic fundamentals of a good workout, which is of course, keep going until you get sick. Forget working out at a steady pace, kids are busy and need to get in shape right now and there's no better way to do that then working out until you puke, hell, they'll lose twice the weight, twice as fast.
It's fun to watch Marvel's gradual transition into Fucking With Us happen in real time.
This is either an exercise or the worst guide to cunnilingus ever.
Yeah, just stick out your tongue, bulge out your eyes and yell shit, that's an exercise now. Be sure to give it a try next time you're at the gym, but make sure you bring the book with you and show it to people so they know you're not an asshole, you're just a lunatic.
"... because I will hunt you, and everyone you love, down."
Movies and TV shows make Valentine's Day card tie-ins all the time, and there's really nothing THAT surprising about it. Sometimes an eight-year-old wants to express his love to another eight-year-old, but he only knows how to communicate in Batmen. We get it.
What we don't get is the mindset behind whoever came up with the copy on DC's Valentine's Day cards. It's like they only read half of their instructions, ("Include characters from the DC universe"), and ignored everything else, ("Make sure it's not totally retarded").
"Mildly" is fine.
These guys aren't a team in the comics, so there is absolutely nothing about this Valentine to indicate there is anything going on here other than a Super-Threesome between Batman, Wonder Woman and an under-aged Robin. They're a sex team, and they love it, and they think you're kind of nice, but only as an afterthought. Look at the size of that puny "You're nice" heart. They resent the fact that they had to include a stupid Valentine's Day message in what was to be their first official threesome announcement for the public.
God is dead, and this is his tombstone.
Giving this card to another child automatically puts you on three different government watch lists. Really irresponsible of DC.
We're a little confused about what kind of message this valentine is meant to get across to whomever we might give it to. What are we saying, that "you're terrific" just like The Joker, a mass-murdering psychopath? Or is the chasing supposed to be a romantic theme? Something like, "I will hunt you down like Batman hunts down criminals in the dead of night. You will never, ever get away from me. No joking ..."
But maybe we're being too critical. The message could obviously just be, "I love serial killers" and we should leave it at that.
It's nice of DC to include at least one valentine to be given to that awkward kid in class that no one talked to. Rather than risk giving him one of those cards that might indicate you liked him, you finally have a card that says "I am aware of your presence, yet Superman remains stoically indifferent towards you."
The Marvel Cook Book (Will Not Teach You How To Cook)
Oh shit Captain, that's was going to be our joke.
The Mighty Marvel Superheroes Cookbook doesn't so much teach kids how to cook as much as it shows them pictures of superheroes with food and leaves it up to the kids to figure out the rest.
Why are those webs brown?
See, right there, when your first step in a How to Make Pancakes recipe is "Make pancakes," that should be a red flag, especially if your second and only other step is "put chocolate on it." We're willing to bet this thing has an ad for the Marvel Workout book somewhere in here too, or at least there should be if every recipe is "make food, add sugar".
We bet Panther lines all his pens up very neatly and would grow a fiddly mustache if his Mother let him.
This cookbook is a fucking coward. It refuses to even suggest a sandwich filling; it's putting all of those decisions in the hands of the reader. We bought this book because we wanted fictional comic book characters to tell us what to eat, and we're not leaving until we get it. You can't just sit back without getting your hands dirty, Cookbook, you have to make a decision on this one.
(Also, making a sandwich and opening a bag of chips isn't technically cooking.)
Stan Lee eats cold beans out of the can and thinks he's the next fucking Gordon Ramsey.
Why learn how to make bread with raisins in it, when you can just buy bread and pound the raisins in there, as though that wasn't how a child would go about making raisin bread anyway. Hell, why did they stop at Quick Raisin Bread and Pudding? Clearly raisins can be pounded or thrown into anything - raisin milk, raisin French fries, raisin raisins- we're just spit-balling here.
Asgardian has no word for "Vegan", but 37 words for "inappropriate crotch bulge".
We stopped reading when the first ingredient for a vegetable soup was 1/2 pound of ground beef. Somewhere between Asgard and Earth, the definition of "vegetarian" got lost. Also "cookbook," "instructions," "recipe," and everything else that wasn't "raisins."
Oh boy. Ooohhh boy. Oh man. Sorry. We're just so, so excited that we get to share the Super Dictionary with you. Oh boy.
The Super Dictionary is a full length dictionary released by Warner Educational Services in 1978 that was chock full of ridiculous situations, inappropriate innuendos and full on racism. If any kid ever actually learned anything from this book, we can't imagine what it could have been other than awful.
Ah, the ghost of Internet memes past.
But in the interest of continued learning we have gone through the entire dictionary and discovered that even though there are no lessons or logic anywhere in sight, there certainly are recurring themes. Like the fact that:
Robin is Useless
Batman wanted Robin's death to look like an accident. Which is why he gave the keys to a prepubescent boy. He wanted his sidekick to die so he put him behind the wheel of a dangerous, experimental car. 'Experimental' means the car had no brakes.
No one in the Bat-Family likes to mention the day that the first Robin died in a terrible rubber car accident because Batman foolishly trusted him with the keys. In fairness to Robin, he's fucking twelve years old.
Sure Robin, whatever you say. It's the ball. It has absolutely nothing to do with you sticking your leg out and standing on your toes whenever you shoot.
We are going to talk like this. We have been talking like this all day. Our families are talking about locking us up.
"Well, it's a good thing you're a god damned superhero, then, isn't it? Just get the hell up, Robin."
We love that Batman doesn't even assume for a second that one of his many villains attacked Robin. He knows without a single doubt that Robin somehow hurt himself again and needs help getting home alone. "Did you trip over your own feet when you accidentally bit your tongue, Robin? Did you wet yourself when it happened? Is that- Yes? Okay, I'll have Alfred tuck you into bed while I go out and fight the mafia; you've had a big day already."
Joker's face here is more unsettling than anything Heath Ledger could ever hope to do.
"I don't actually understand how the super villain/super hero dichotomy works; will you please let me go and then let me arrest you?"
Green Characters Are Complete Wusses
There are only two green characters in the DC universe, Green Arrow and Green Lantern, but surprisingly enough their color choice isn't their only similarity. They also both suffer from intense emotional disturbances set off by basically nothing at all.
Green Lantern, the magic, semi-omnipotent superhero in charge of protecting the entire Earth has ordered that boy not to pick that flower. Well, there's gotta be a good reason. Why? It's evil, it's rare, it's got a thorn, what? Turns out he can't pick it because that's Green Lantern's flower, that's why, and he is enjoying the shit out of it!
"Fuck you, kid!"
But Green Lantern doesn't JUST steal flowers from white-eyed children with no explanation...
"Look at your eyes, you- Jesus, Hal, you're wasted."
... he's also a huge baby. Or drunk, or exhausted, or something. He's going to start crying if someone doesn't get him into a bed soon, is our point.
Really? He said "go back to the other toads in the pond?" Because it certainly looked like he said "AAAAHHHH! AAAAHHHH GET OFF ME! You may be on one of the other superheroes, but not me. Will you get off me?"
And then Green Arrow murdered the child. He committed murder and is now a murderer.
It's almost as if Green Arrow and Green Lantern are having a competition about who can have the biggest over-reaction to the most insignificant thing.
It's Been a Tough Time for Super-villains
When picturing a traditional super-villain scheme, most of us think of big plots like blotting out the sun or blowing up the Pentagon or carving your name into the moon. But what the Super-Dictionary shows us is that sometimes super villains can just be downright petty.
Like the Penguin here, sure he can afford to pay for that shovel, it would probably even be less of a hassle if he did. But it's the principles of super-villainy that are important here and those principles clearly state that super-villains don't pay for shit. Ever. Case closed.
What are you even going to do with that, Joker? This cannot be the most efficient way to get groceries.
The Penguin desperately needs a hobby. He needs something to occupy his time. Maybe if The Penguin had a hobby or some friends, he wouldn't be such an asshole.
"Some will be apple. The apple will BURN YOU, BATMAN."
Super-villainy rule #4: always explain your schemes in as much detail as humanly possible to your arch-nemesis.
In the process of sourcing, cropping and resizing this, we still haven't figured this out.
Was that what Luthor was always after? Painting Superman? Where's the entry where Luthor draws a dick on his face?
Superman and Lois Lane are Batshit Insane
Lois and Superman have always had a complicated relationship but the Super-Dictionary reveals to us some surprising facts about their personal lives and how incredibly unhealthy and abusive their relationship really was.
Many boxes contain a woman's head. This is what we have learned. This is why Se7en was so underwhelming.
We don't know if this is a punishment or part of some weird, sexual role play these two are into, but we don't like it. Perry White doesn't seem to, either, while Clark just glares at her with an expression that screams "No! You keep that on. You wear it until you learn."
"Sure, Superman, we figured it was something like that, but remember you're a superhero and people are dying everywhere all the time." Also, we have to point out that one of the distinguishing factors of a teaspoon is that, of the major measuring spoons, (tea and table), it is the smaller of the two. When you're trying to teach children what words and objects are, describing a teaspoon as "giant" is just irresponsible dictionary work.
Oh domestic violence, you scamp.
What kind of arrangement is this? Lois will only tell Superman where he's going after he decides how he wants to get there? And she'll beat him if he doesn't tell her? We don't even know how she benefits from that plan. What did Superman do that made Lois so crazy?
"That is why we are standing in her room, staring."
Oh, OK, sure, yeah, that'd do it.
There is no way that this is the clearest way to teach children what "strange" is. No. No way.
D. McCallum has more nerd comedy here and can also be found in The Four Humors, a short story anthology for charity that you can buy here.
For more disturbing looks at superheroes, check out 5 Superheroes Rendered Ridiculous by Gritty Reboots and The 6 Creepiest Comic Book Characters of All Time.
And stop by LinkSTORM to see more of Submariner's spread.
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