Welcome to the three hundredth and ninety-second in a series of examinations of comic book legends and whether they are true or false. This week, it is a special “Addendum” week of Comic Book Legends Revealed. Each of this week’s three legends are riffing off a past column, whether it be a CBLR column or a different Comics Should Be Good column. Did DC Comics actually call Hellblazer “Hellraiser” at first? Was Bucky O’Hare based on the Star Wars character Jaxxon? Where did the idea of Alfred raising Bruce Wayne surprisingly first appear?
Click here for an archive of the previous three hundred and ninety-one.
COMIC LEGEND: DC was originally going to call Hellblazer “Hellraiser.”
STATUS: Basically True
Two weeks ago, in a spotlight Comics Should Be Good column on Hellblazer (which now looks kind of silly, since I went on about how Hellblazer was the longest-running DC or Marvel comic that had never been canceled or rebooted. I guess I jinxed things, eh?), I mentioned how Jamie Delano initially suggested that they title the new John Constantine ongoing series “Hellraiser,” but since there was a popular film with that name that had just been released, DC said no. At the time, I noted that Delano did not know if DC ever actually decided to use the idea before changing it or if they just dismissed it out of hand. I didn’t know, either. Luckily, you folks DID know. A few of you mentioned that you were sure you had seen the name used, but only Keith Richard actually sent me proof.
From Amazing Heroes #118…
From Amazing Heroes #120…
Finally, from Amazing Heroes #124…
So while it was never specifically Hellraiser without an S, close enough!
Thanks for the info, Keith!
Check out some Entertainment Urban Legends Revealed!
Was There Really an Adult Version of Candid Camera Called CANDID Candid Camera?
COMIC LEGEND: Bucky O’Hare was based on Jaxxon
STATUS: I’m Going With False
Awhile back, JK Parkin (of our awesome sister blog, Robot 6) asked me about the short-lived Star Wars character Jaxxon and whether there was any connection between Jaxxon and Bucky O’Hare, Larry Hama’s popular comic book series from Continuity Studios.
(JK’s question popped up in the comments section about a dozen times, as well)
Here’s Jaxxon, from 1978’s Star Wars #8…
Here’s Bucky O’Hare, from his 1984 comic book debut…
However, you might recall from an old Comic Book Legends Revealed that Bucky O’Hare was actually created back in 1978 as a project initially intended for DC Comics (where Hama was working as an editor at the time), so he was not created years after Jaxxon, but rather just a few months later.
I asked Hama about it and he said that there was no connection and that he had developed most of the story for what became Bucky O’Hare years earlier before actually creating the Bucky O’Hare character in 1978.
I don’t know of many comic book creators with a better track record for honesty than Larry Hama, so if Larry Hama says it is a coincidence, I have no reason to believe otherwise (he was not even working at Marvel when the Star Wars issue came out, as he was editing books at DC at the time), so I’m going with a false here.
Check out some more Entertainment Urban Legends Revealed! All Lovin’ Spoonful legends!
Were The Lovin’ Spoonful the Original Choice for the TV Series That Became the Monkees?
COMIC LEGEND: The idea of Alfred raising Bruce Wayne after Bruce’s parents were killed was introduced in an episode of Super Powers.
I noted that surprisingly enough, it was not until after Crisis and Frank Miller’s Year One that Alfred was established as being the Wayne’s butler since Bruce was a child (an idea that Miller first introduced in Dark Knight Returns). However, amazingly enough, the idea appeared a year before Dark Knight Returns in, of all places, an episode of the Super Powers cartoon series!
Alan Burnett (who later worked on Batman: The Animated Series) wrote the 1984 episode, “The Fear,” which was also noteworthy for being the FIRST time that Batman’s origin was ever shown outside of comics. The serials and the TV series never showed how Bruce Wayne came to become Batman (nor did the film version of the TV series).
After Bruce’s parents are murdered, Alfred is shown taking care of him…
and being with him as Bruce trains to become Batman…
So you can certainly add this one to my recent post on Surprisingly Relatively Quite Recent Additions to the Batman Mythos!
Thanks to John McDonagh for suggesting I feature this one!
Okay, that’s it for this week!
Feel free (heck, I implore you!) to write in with your suggestions for future installments! My e-mail address is firstname.lastname@example.org. And my Twitter feed is http://twitter.com/brian_cronin, so you can ask me legends there, as well!
Here’s my new book, Why Does Batman Carry Shark Repellent? It came out this week! The cover is by Kevin Hopgood (the fellow who designed War Machine’s armor).
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Here’s my book of Comic Book Legends (130 legends – half of them are re-worked classic legends I’ve featured on the blog and half of them are legends never published on the blog!).
The cover is by artist Mickey Duzyj. He did a great job on it…(click to enlarge)…
If you’d like to order it, you can use the following code if you’d like to send me a bit of a referral fee…
See you all next week!