This is Past Was Close Behind, a feature that spotlights moments, exchanges, etc. from older comics that take on a brand new light when read in concert with later comic books or events. Basically, stuff that looks hilarious in hindsight. Today, we look at how a Speedball spiked costume was something that was played for laughs until it, was, you know, NOT played for laughs.
In 1991’s New Warriors Annual #1, there was a series of back-up stories. One of them was a delightful little tale by Dan Slott, John Calimee and Don Hudson where Night Thrasher is testing the upper limits of Speedball’s powers.
Night Thrasher considers the offensive aspects of Speedball’s costume and Speedball jokingly suggests making a Speedball spiked costume…
Speedball is then given a serum so that his powers can be tested. However, he needs to make a big impact before his kinetic powers can kick in and “sadly,” New York City has so many superheroes in it that he can’t seem to get a good fall in anywhere!
Luckily for him, though, it turns out that the serum actually accidentally canceled out his powers, so he would have died if were not for his fellow heroes! Note, though, that when he walks in, Night Thrasher is giving a look see to see what a Speedball spiked costume could look like…
It’s all amusing, of course, because during Civil War, the New Warriors are killed in an explosion that killed a bunch of innocent bystanders. Speedball survives, but he decides to start wearing a costume made out of spikes to constantly torture himself over their deaths…
Pretty damn funny.
Amusingly enough, years later, Slott and Fabian Nicieza (who was the original writer on New Warriors) did a Deadpool/Great Lakes Initiative Summer Special where Squirrel Girl basically tells Speedball how dumb his whole Penance situation is.
If anyone else has a suggestion for some hilarious in hindsight stuff, let me know by dropping me a line at firstname.lastname@example.org!
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