Wednesday, February 5, 2014

Picking a "Sinister Six" for Anyone and Everyone

Doug:  So back on Martin Luther King, Jr.'s birthday, I saw a solicitation on Twitter for one of IDW's fabulous Artist's Editions (lordy, would I love to have one of those!).  This particular book, shown below, is the second volume dedicated to the Jazzy One, John Romita, Sr.  Pictured is a well-known Spider-Man cover featuring eight of his long-time nemeses.  But it got me to thinking as I was checking out the baddies -- the original Sinister Six isn't pictured!  There's no Mysterio!  Of course, because I always have your best conversational interests at heart, my next thought was, "Well, any six of these Spidey-haters could have filled out an interesting roster..."  And the next thought I had was, "Hmmm... I wonder what the greater BAB community would say if charged with picking a Sinister Six for the Fantastic Four?  Or Daredevil?  Or Batman?  Or the Flash?"  Of course I know the answer.  You're going to run with this.

Doug:  So like a defensive back licking his chops as he steps in front of an errant pass with nothing but green turf between himself and a score, today you're going to "Pick 6" bad guys for any of your favorite protagonists.  It can be a solo character or from the annals of any team book.  You can set it up in one of two ways, I suppose -- pick six who would make a good team together, or just treat it like a "top six" list of the most significant villains for that particular character(s).  Have fun with this -- looking forward to some interesting nominations and healthy debate!


Humanbelly said...

Oh YEAH, baby! I'm gonna grab the Hulk before anyone else does!! (Well, okay-- maybe there's not a huge risk of that happening, heh.)

[quick note on that Romita cover: The Beetle??!? REALLY?? Possibly. . . JR got confused by the dome-like head gear for a moment, and took a wrong turn, missing Mysterio entirely in the process???]

So let's see-- Greenskin's tricky in this category, because MANY of the folks that he regularly comes in conflict with aren't necessarily "Sinister" (Guys like The Thing, Iron Man, the Avengers, Wolverine, etc, etc), and it would be nice to keep this in the realm of a rogue's gallery. Also, the Hulk does have a tendency to square off regularly against heavy-weights who originated in other titles, so his gallery is likely to duplicate some other super-folks'.

1) Thunderbolt Ross. Yep, I'm sorry-- staunch, courageous grizzled old Army/Air Force general (he's been portrayed as both, somehow) though he may be, he's crossed the line of sanity, propriety, responsibility and (ultimately) legality so many times that he can't possibly be considered a "good guy" anymore. Hence, I suppose, his current exile into the stupid character of the Red Hulk. I'm talkin' the original T-Bolt, here.

2) The Leader, of course. First-rate arch-nemesis. Complex, snotty, yet not entirely unsympathetic, as he's been very well handled by a host of writers over the last 50 years, and has survived any number of physical transformations.

3) The (original) Emil Blonsky Abomination. Yep, technically stronger than the Hulk in both of their Tales to Astonish incarnations. Wildly inconsistent in how he was written over the decades, to the point of absurdism (a sensitive, disfigured poetry teacher, living in the sewers???), but he's one of the few Hulk foes capable of an exciting toe-to-toe slug-out.

4) The Rhino. Yep, a Spidey villain that keeps popping up in the Hulk's book. In later years, though, it just doesn't work, because he simply can't be plausible as a Hulk-level opponent strength-wise anymore. (Best defeat ever at the end of issue #158, BTW)

5) Absorbing Man. Aaaaand a Thor heavyweight, yes. He really works very well against the Hulk, although it HAS to be tough to keep coming up with ways to defeat ol' Crusher. Lordy, he's just so stupid-- although less articulate, the old Hulk was always far brighter than 'Sorby.

6) Is tough. I would say Tyrannus, just for history/longevity's sake, but geeze-- he is so flippin' LAME and forgettable! I well imagine most of you are saying WHO-annus? My next choice would be the Juggernaut (*sigh* from the X-Men, of course), except he hasn't been quite as persistent a foe over the years. Ah heck-- Juggy it is unless some other interested Hulk stalwart cares to put forth a better candidate!


Edo Bosnar said...

I have an alternative Sinister Six for Spidey, a sort of "who left the gates to the zoo open?" version. To wit, brought together by the Jackal, they are: Grizzly, Gibbon, Kangaroo, the Fly (from ASM Annual #10) and the Iguana (from Spectacular SM #s 32-34). Those last two aren't actually lame, so they'd give Spidey a run for his money after he mops up the floor with the first four.

Doc Savage said...

Silver/Bronze Age Green Lantern:

Star Sapphire
Hector Hammond
The Shark

or swap out one for Dr. Polaris

Doc Savage said...

Silver/Bronze Age Flash:

Captain Cold
Rainbow Raider
Reverse Flash
Pied Piper

And once Flash puts them behind bars, a new team:
Big Sir
The Top
Golden Glider
Dr. Alchemy
Abra Cadabra
Weather Wizard

Doc Savage said...

oh heck, forgot Gorilla Grodd...! maybe he can be revealed as the mastermind behind the others.

William said...

I chose Daredevil, because he's always been one of my favorite characters. It's not easy coming up with a Sinister Six for 'ol Hornhead though because he doesn't have as big a rogues gallery to pick from as say Spider-Man. But I think the team I put together would make DD's life pretty difficult.

1. BULLSEYE - Arguably DD's arch-enemy, and he works great as a the anti-Daredevil.

2. ELEKTRA - She started out as a villain, and then things got complicated when it was revealed that she had a romantic past with Matt Murdock. Still they remained adversaries until her "death" at the hands of Bullseye. I think the friction between Elektra and B.E. would make for some interesting team dynamics.

3. STILTMAN - Come on, you couldn't have a DD Sinister Six team without including the bad guy who's most closely associated with him. Plus Stilty could serve as comedy relief when needed.

4. THE GLADIATOR - Another longtime DD foe who would be the muscle of the team.

5. THE PURPLE MAN - A cunning adversary whose powers of manipulation would make him the natural leader.

6. ELECTRO - Although he's mostly associated with Spider-Man, Electro was actually the first super-villain that DD ever faced. Also, I believe Hornhead fought Electro more often than Spidey did in the early days.

Other villains I considered were The Eel, The Ox, Man-Bull, The Jester, and Cobra and Mr. Hyde. I also thought of The Owl and The Kingpin, but I felt that neither of them would join a super-villain team. However, one of them would work nicely as the shadowy behind the scenes sponsor of the group.

Karen said...

HB, I was trying to think of a Hulk Sinister Six myself (I've had Hulk on the brain since the new Back Issue came out) and it's not easy, because as you note, many of his foes seem to be "left-overs" from other heroes. The only two pure, classic Hulk enemies that instantly come to mind are the Leader and the Abomination. I'll grant you Thunderbolt Ross as well.

How about some of his more monstrous foes? Wendigo is the first one I'd pick. The Glob also popped up a few times to hassle old Greenskin. And what about the Gremlin? Maybe he's too much like the Leader -they'd probably bicker over their plans too much to ever work together!

Really, I could go with the Leader, the Abomination, and the U-Foes -that's six right there!

Kind of strange when you think about it, that a character like the Hulk hasn't generated more of his own Grade A villains.

Edo Bosnar said...

Ah, just thought of a great magical/supernatural sinister six who would give Dr. Strange a real run for his money:
Dormammu leading Baron Mordo, the Enchantress, Morgan Le Fey, Dracula and Nightmare.

J.A. Morris said...

I choose Power Man and/or Iron Fist villains!

5.Piranha Jones

Steve Does Comics said...

Let's see...

The Hulk's Sinister Six. I'd go for:

The Bi-Beast
The original Night-Crawler
The Harpy
The Abomination
Captain Axis

All of them brought together by the Galaxy Master, of course.

Doug said...

You know who has the lamest rogues gallery? Superman. Get past Luthor, Brainiac, Metallo, and Bizarro, and you're about to the Toyman. Oooohhh...

How about a Black History Month throw down? On one side we have Power Man, Black Panther, Cloak, the Falcon, Black Goliath, and Storm. They're squaring off against the Man-Ape, Killmonger, Black Talon, Nekra, Moses Magnum, and... the Rocket Racer!


Humanbelly said...

Aaaaaaaaas Doug sets political correctness back fifty years. . .

(Oy vey!)


Humanbelly said...

That's right, Karen-- the Hulk does seem to have far fewer Nemeses of his own, y'know. I do think that's an organic development over the course his long history, though. In none of his incarnations has he ever been a character to go out and "take care of" a specific baddie that he personally took responsibility for-- and that's really a hallmark trait in almost any other superhero you can name. Likewise, there aren't that many baddies who would hold the kind of grudge against Greenskin where they would devise schemes and what-not to lead to his humiliating downfall-- he's never been stable enough to warrant that, and it's rarely a personal vendetta situation. It would be like plotting the humiliating downfall of a tsunami or an earthquake.
Another contributing factor would be that the Hulk, more than any other hero, has always been a WIDE-ranging traveler. The guy's been everywhere, and thus his opponents aren't automatically always in New York like pretty much everyone else's. In fact, the degree of coincidence that has been used to face him off against the Abomination so often over the years reaches the height of comic absurdity.
And then. . . he's often been the "bad guy" himself, sort of-- fighting pretty much the entirety of the rest of the Marvel Hero stable at some point.

You know what I did forget, and Steve's post reminded me? That my six would need to function as a team, which- Ha!-- is pretty much a huge "fail" on my part. Noooooot gonna happen. Ross would start barking at everyone from the get-go, and they'd quickly get fed up and kill him. . . and then there'd only be the Sinister Five. Doesn't work.

Good team, though, Steve! All notable, albeit briefly-used, Hulk foes.


Doug said...

Really? That was offensive? What's offensive is how long it took me to name 12 Black characters from Marvel Comics.

But if you want me to get rolling on political correctness, affirmative action, etc., just ask and we can have that talk offline. Despite leaning ever so slightly left of moderate, I have things to say.


Karen said...

Uh oh! My partner's on fire now! I can feel the snow in Illinois melting from here!!

But yeah, that could be a contest in itself, coming up with Black characters from either DC or Marvel that would fill out a decent sized team roster...

Doc Savage said...

Doug, what about Brother Voodoo?

Garett said...

Perhaps for Black History month you could open up the floor to movies as well. I just watched Blazing Saddles again for the first time in a long while--in interviews, Brooks and the actors say this movie couldn't be made today due to political correctness. Great show! Brooks also says the only complaints he received were from white other interesting tidbits from the black and white actors/writers on the show.

Anonymous said...

Sweet Jesus, Doug!

Hobie "The Prowler" Brown. (My last name is BROWN) (Wondering if anyone remembers December 1969)

Edo Bosnar said...

Don't you mean Sweet Christmas?

Doug said...

Look, I don't know if anyone has been truly offended by my post above that mentions six Black heroes squaring off against six Black villains. I suppose the "politically correct" thing to do would be to apologize; however, since the spirit of the comment was fully within the topic of the day and the fact that (as stated on Monday) this is Black History Month also supports that post, I'll suggest that the problem may not be mine.

If the electronic transmission of humor did not actually transfer to me, then please disregard.


Humanbelly said...


Ribbing you- I was RIBBING you! Definitely NOT meant to be taken as an actual rebuke! Why, I don't disagree at all that political "incorrectness" does indeed lie in the lack of viable black (or any non-white, for that matter) characters in comics.



Anonymous said...

You're right Karen. (That can't be said enough/pander pander pander)

As always, my first thought was Spider-Man. I was thinking who is greatest foes would be, Kingpin, of course, and then Doc Ock and......but then I started to wonder: Prowler, my boy, who would ol' Spidey have the greatest TROUBLE with? And that would be the foes he had the closest connection to: The Lizard, Green Goblin, Man-Wolf, Venom, The Hobgoblin (Ned Leeds version) The Jackel. Villains he would be fighting with one metaphorical hand behind his back. He can't hurt them without hurting the people he knows are inside. That would make for some tough dust ups (Not like Gwen, NOT LIKE GWEN!!!!)

And Daredevil's best battles have always been against Bullseye, his best wars against the Kingpin. And then you would have to include that really huge NINJA from the hand. And that other ninja with the little freckle next to his left eye. No, his left, not your left when you're looking at him. And that other ninja with the weird thumbs. How many is that? Five? Do we need more ninjas? Who's got casting? I NEED MORE NINJASSSSS!!!!

The Prowler (pulling exclamation marks out of his .... boots where they're kept next to his gas pellets).

Anonymous said...

Oh crap.......who his greatest not who is greatest........

The Prowler (having trouble typing in the back of the bus)

Doug said...

HB -- thanks. Sorry for the confusion. We all know how electronic transmission doesn't always get received with the intent that it was sent.


Prowler, I looked up some key dates in December 1969. I'm assuming you may have hinted at something like the police firing on the Black Panthers, as opposed to the Plastic Ono Band's only public concert?


Anonymous said...

LOL. I made my debut in Amazing Spider-Man number 79!!!!

The Prowler (remembers there was a chill coming off the water, the Mets were still the toast of the town.....)

Edo Bosnar said...

Karen, I think Doug's team is a pretty decent roster. Personally, though, I would drop Cloak (he seems kind of pointless without Dagger), and add Photon (Monica Rambeau). Now that's a seriously formidable team.

Hoosier X said...

Get rid of Black Talon and put in ... Nightshade and you got a great team!

Anonymous said...

A THOR sinister six (no gods allowed) could be






ENCHANTRESS (okay, with THOR it's
hard not to have at least ONE god)


Karen said...

I found a good Captain America "Sinister Six" hard to come up with once I got past the Red Skull and Baron Zemo. Everyone else seemed relatively lame.

How about Iron Man?
1) Mandarin
2) Crimson Dynamo
3) Titanium Man
4) Living Laser
5) Justin Hammer
6) Ultimo!

Boy, that's old school. He doesn't even have his anti-Communist origin any more...

Redartz said...

Ah, the Sinister Six; my favorite recurring assemblage in my favorite hero's book! Of course I can't just name the classic lineup; so how about a Sinister Six composed of crime figures:
Kingpin (obviously)
The Big Man
The Crime Master (yes, reaching way back to the Ditko days)
The Rose
Other than Kingpin's great strength and Hammerhead's head butts, there is limited actual super power involved here. But imagine the infighting among them, not to mention the veritable army of stooges and hoodlums to wade through! For my money, Wilson Fisk would take over with hardly a sweat...

Anonymous said...

Hmm let's see here ....for Captain America I'd pick :

1) Red Skull - he's got the Cosmic Cube fer cryin' out loud!

2) Baron Zemo - gotta love your stereotypical masked Nazi.

3) Baron Strucker - continuing with the Nazi theme, bonus points for founding HYDRA.

4) Batroc - OK not exactly the most fearsome foe, but hey the French need all the respect they can get!

5) Baron Blood - what is it with Nazi vampires?

6) MODOK - the ultimate giant talking head.

- Mike 'can't wait to name a sinister eighteen!' from Trinidad & Tobago.

Doc Savage said...

Aside from Spider-Man it seems like most Marvel heroes don't have much in the way of an interesting rogues gallery. I'm struggling to come up with six worthy foes for most of 'em.

Doug said...

Slippery, scaly guys?

And, crossing over: Killer Croc!


Doug said...

Matt --

Good point. I was even thinking of some of the teams. Who would you say is in a top 6 for the Avengers or the FF?

Avengers --

Baron Zemo (either)
Count Nefaria?

FF --

Dr. Doom
Red Ghost?
Mad Thinker?

Tough, huh -- especially when you take out the super-teams like the Masters of Evil and the Frightful Four.


Doug said...

Oh, wait. Duh.

For the Avengers:

Brian Michael Bendis.

Nuff said!


Garett said...

Heroines vs Villainesses! 3 each from DC and Marvel.

Ms. Marvel
Wonder Girl
Black Canary
Black Widow

Madame Hydra
Star Sapphire

Doc Savage said...

Superman's Sinister Six:

Lex Luthor
and Darkseid

and that's just off the top of my head, so I'll have to disagree that he doesn't have many good enemies!

Steve Does Comics said...

The Fantastic Four's Sinister Six?

Dr Doom
Maximus the Mad
Ronan the Accuser

I'd leave out Galactus because it's hard to see why he'd need the other five.

Related Posts with Thumbnails