"Darkseid is one tricky hombre."

§ March 11th, 2008 § Filed under Uncategorized Comments Off on "Darkseid is one tricky hombre."

So Monday night, I found myself watching an episode of the mid-’80s version of the Super Friends cartoon, when Firestorm and Darkseid were featured characters. The episode was “Darkseid’s Golden Trap,” in which Darkseid and his henchmen, Desaad and a nearly-unrecognizable Kalibak, travel into distant space to attend the 532nd Annual Intergalactic Criminal Auction, or whatever it was called. I do remember that it was specifically referred to as the 500-something-th annual, which had me wondering which time scale from what alien world they were using to determine the “annual” bit of that title.

Anyway, Darkseid’s there to bid on a piece of Gold Kryptonite to use against Superman. Even though the bidding begins at something like 100,000 bleens (bleens being the currency of choice among space criminals, apparently), Darkseid simply says “I bid…one bleen,” thus showing that even being on the Super Friends doesn’t make him any less of a badass.

It so happens that some Super Friends (Wonder Woman, Black Vulcan, and Firestorm) are there in disguise to get the Gold Kryptonite themselves for safekeeping, and Darkseid finds them out and catches them, and blah blah blah. Back on Earth, Superman, Batman, and El Dorado discover there’s trouble…well, actually, Darkseid gives them a space-call to tell them 1) he captured the other heroes, and 2) he’s got Gold Kryptonite, instead of just keeping his mouth shut and quietly putting together some kind of secret Gold Kryptonite trap that could catch Supes by surprise. No, he’s got to tell him ahead of time so that the Friends can go chasing after him, whip up a cunning plan to defeat him, and prepare for the fact that he has Gold Kryptonite.

Okay, look, here’s what I would have done if I was Darkseid. First, I’d fire Desaad. I mean, honestly, that guy gives me the creeps. Second, okay, I’d still make the space-call to the Hall of Justice to let the Super Friends know that, hey, I got your pals here, oh my, I guess you’d better come and rescue them. What I wouldn’t do is say, “oh, and by the way, I have the one known piece of Gold Kryptonite, so y’all better plan ahead.” No, I’d wait for Supes, Bats, and, er, El D to show up, let them give me the “Your plans are finished, Darkseid” speech, and when Superman tries to put the cuffs on me, whip out that Gold Kryptonite out from under my lead-lined hat. “What th–!? Gold Kryptonite! I so totally wasn’t expecting that!” Superman would shout, as his powers depart from him forever. And now there’s nothing, nothing to stop me from conquering the universe! Ah HA HA HA!

Er, yeah.

Now this guy, El Dorado:

Okay, I had to grab these stills off of some Youtubed SF footage, and not from the show I watched, so I apologize for the quality. But as I was watching El Dorado in action, it sorta looked like that he had the superpower of having whatever superpower happened to be convenient at that moment. He can read minds, he was able to create armor around himself, and he was able to cast an illusion over Batman, making him look like Superman long enough to fool Darkseid into throwing the whole chunk of Gold Kryptonite at him.

However, El Dorado had the best line in the entire episode, as he summed up Darkseid like so few others have been able to:

“Darkseid is one tricky hombre.”

Yes. Yes, indeed. God bless you and your wisdom, El Dorado.

A couple other things that shouldn’t have surprised me, as I’m pretty sure I was aware of both of these things before, but clearly haven’t thought about them in a while. For example, it was good to hear The Man himself, Adam West, voicing Batman. Even though they had him saying some ridiculous things throughout the course of this story, he can sell a Batman line like nobody else.

Also, looking at the credits, I spotted Geof Darrow’s name…the same Geof Darrow who later brought us Hard Boiled, among others. Hey, if Alex Toth could do it….

I was completely wrong about this, but I swear to you, some of the background aliens in the auctions sequences early in the episode looked like they were drawn by Skip Williamson. That’s one of the reasons I watched the credits so closely. I know, I know, that’s the talk of a madman, but I wish I did have screenshots from this episode to prove that I’m not crazy for thinking so, I’m not.

Just now, I was looking up something else about this episode, and noticed that Rene Auberjonois voiced Desaad. “Clayton, nooooo!”

So anyway, Super Friends. I haven’t sat through an episode of this in years, and this was, in fact, the first time I’d seen an episode from the Darkseid era of the show. And really, Firestorm’s rock-solid ‘n’ unmoving flame-hair was very distracting:

I know it would have been a pain to animate, but c’mon, just look at it. It’s like he’s wearing a blooming flower hat.

But hey, the show was good for some laughs, and even in this somewhat lessened form, Darkseid is still Darkseid. More or less.

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