The origins of the “Legion of the Strange”<![if !supportFootnotes]><![endif]>
By Dennis E. Power
With help and contributions from Dr. Peter Coogan, Henry Zeo Covert, and Ivan Schablotski.
PART ONE: THE
Perhaps one of the most bizarre annals in the history of the Wold Newton Universe is how the assassination of President Dwight David Eisenhower was averted because of a group of sex crazed aliens. While it is true that the sex crazed aliens were only indirectly responsible for the well being of President Eisenhower, in all honesty their part in this event cannot be discounted.
The tale begins, as they most often do, on a dark and stormy night.
Scott Darrow<![if !supportFootnotes]><![endif]> and his girlfriend Janet Weiss<![if !supportFootnotes]><![endif]> were on their way to visit
Professor Everett Scott. Everett Scott was a renowned physicist who was also
interested in extraterrestrial activity. Scott taught science at a small junior
Scott Darrow, who had demonstrated an aptitude for the sciences as well as a
strong moral fiber was one of those individuals tapped as a candidate to become
one of Everett Scott’s operatives. Everett Scott invited Brad and his
girlfriend to dinner so that Everett Scott could discuss how they should best
investigate the strange goings on at the
to Everett Scott’s rather secluded digs on the outskirts of
Upon knocking on the door of the old Frankenstein place Brad Darrow and Janet Weiss were greeted by the butler. They noticed immediately that he was a hunchback<![if !supportFootnotes]><![endif]>. Once that initial shock had passed they were rather surprised to see that he was dressed like an Edwardian butler. His sallow looks, long stringy blond hair and sunken eyes gave him a rather cadaverous appearance.
Brad Darrow asked if they had telephone so that he could get a tow truck to get his car to a garage.
The butler invited them into the foyer while he went to get the master of the house. He was soon joined by a woman in a French maid’s outfit, another woman in top hat, tails and a gold leotard with fishnet stockings. Behind them came a tall statuesque woman garbed in a black ball-gown.<![if !supportFootnotes]><![endif]>
The woman spoke in a melodious contralto and introduced herself as Francine Chienne-Chaude, and introduced her staff; Riff-Raff was the butler and Magenta the Maid.
Brad once again reiterated his need to use the telephone. Francine Chienne-Chaude said that she would take care of calling for a mechanic; meanwhile she insisted that Brad and Janet remove their wet clothing. The butler and French maid quickly removed Brad and Janet’s clothing leaving them clad in their underwear.
Madame Chienne-Chaude invited them to join the party. As it turned out Brad and Janet were not as underdressed as they thought; Madame Chienne-Chaude was having a costume party.
Brad and Janet were each handed a glass of liquid that Madame Chienne-Chaude claimed was champagne. After only a few sips Brad and Janet felt extremely bizarre; warm, dizzy and flushed.
The hunchbacked man dressed as a butler and the French maid danced an odd step that seemed like a samba and yet also reminded Brad of the mating ritual of spiders. This dance was the signal for the party-goers to begin dancing as well. The dancing soon evolved into a type of behavior that shocked the conservative mid-western sensibilities of Brad and Janet. Brad and Janet were fascinated and sickened by the partygoers, who in various states of dress and undress, began to engage in sexual behavior. The couplings, and this term, Brad found inadequate since there were often three or more people engaged in sex acts with one another, many of these combinations were even among members of the same sex.
Madame Chienne-Chaude noticed their uneasiness and told them that he had something to show them that would perk them up, especially if they were interested in the biological science. She said this with a small smirk.
She led them out of the ballroom and down a hallway into a large room that looked to Brad and Janet like something out of Universal Pictures horror film. As it turns out they were not far off the mark. Madame Chienne-Chaude removed the tarp off of an eight by four rectangular box revealing a glass vat containing the body of a perfectly formed, muscular man in his twenties. Janet immediately noticed his tanned good looks, blond hair, perfectly chiseled looks but only glanced briefly at the rest of his naked body. The body floated in a gelatinous solution and an odd mist swirled above the gap between the glass lid and the surface of the solution.
Brad noticed that there were no signs of life and asked if the man were dead.
Madame Chienne-Chaude answered that the poor soul had died in a traffic accident and that she had discovered a process to make him live again, better than before. She remarked that they were quite fortunate to have arrived when they did, since she was about to revive the young man.
Before their eyes the mist in the glass vat dissipated as it sank into the gelatinous liquid When mist was gone Dr. Chienne-Chaude rang a bell, they were joined Riff-Raff, Magenta and the woman dressed in top hat and tails.
At Dr. Chienne-Chaude’s wordless signal, the butler handed out lab coats to everyone in the room.
The three servants took up positions in front of three machines. Two machines had knife switches and the other had a large dial on it. From the ceiling Dr. Chienne-Chaud pulled down two long tubes that ended in suction cups. He placed these on the sides of the glass vat.
At Dr. Chiene-Chaud nod the hunchbacked butler threw the knife switch of the machine in front of him. A soft humming filled the room and the liquid glowed a brilliant white. Dr. Chienne-Chaud called out for the sonic oscillator to be turned on and the French maid threw the switch on the machine in front of her. An ear splitting screech filled the room. After a few moments Dr. Chienne-Chaud shouted for the reactor to be turned up three more points.
The liquid inside the vat pulsated with a variety of colors until it glowed an intense blinding white.
When Brad and Janet’s vision had returned they saw that the liquid inside the vat had either evaporated or had been drained. The man inside had sat up and was grasping the side the top of the vat. Standing up he reached out for Dr. Chienne-Chaud. Although he attempted to speak all that came out of his mouth were inarticulate grunts and croaks.
Madame Chienne-Chaud however ignored man’s inability to speak, rather she was overjoyed at the success of her experiment. Slowly running her hands over the man’s body and kneading his muscles, she cooed and giggled while murmuring how perfect the body and skin had turned out. She told him his name was Rocky<![if !supportFootnotes]><![endif]> and asked if he remembered anything. The young man continued to make croaks.
All the rubbing and stroking had a pronounced physical effect on the muscular young man. An effect that Brad found disturbing because Janet found it so fascinating.
Dr. Chienne-Chaud laughed and murmured, “He is risen”. Turning to the butler and maid, Dr. Chienne-Chaud ordered them to prepare rooms for their guests.
Brad protested that they were not guests they merely wanted to use the phone. Dr. Chienne-Chaud ignored Brad’s outburst and walked off leading the befuddled young man by the hand. To the amusement of the French maid, the woman in the top hat hummed The Bridal March as Dr. Chienne-Chaud left.
Brad and Janet were manhandled by the butler and French maid, both of whom were much stronger than they appeared. They were each pushed into dark and musty smelling rooms. The doors were locked behind them. They each found themselves in a plushly furnished Victorian style bedroom lit by a few candles.
The effects of the alcohol they had drunk earlier had still not worn off. Feeling tired and lethargic both Brad and Janet climbed into their respective beds and went to sleep.
Although we cannot say for certain if it was Brad or Janet who first discovered Dr. Chienne-Chaud’s secret, since neither one of them had a clock in their room, we can say for certain that both of them, to their dismay, discovered the secret. Since the sequence of discovery is not crucial we will follow the one established by Mr. O’Brien in his screenplay based on the Denton Affair.<![if !supportFootnotes]><![endif]>
Janet Weiss awoke to darkness and found that she was not alone in the bed. Her hair was softly being stroked. She called out for Brad and he answered her back. He then kissed her passionately. She realized that Brad must have still been under the influence of the alcohol that they had drank earlier because he began to fondle her in areas that he had never touched before. She knew that she must be still under the influence of the alcohol because not only did she not stop him, she encouraged him, even when his hands went straight to dusting off the third base.
One of Janet’s hands clasped Brad’s head while the second reached to stroke his chest. Both hand recoiled in shock, for split second Janet could not fathom why Brad had long hair and breasts. She realized that this was not Brad but some woman.
Janet stiffened in panic when Dr. Chienne-Chaud asked her what was the problem.
Janet protested that she was a good girl, that she had never been with a boy, that she was still pure.
Dr. Chienne-Chaud continued to stroke and fondle her and whispered into her ear, asking her if it didn’t feel good and telling her that she would still be a virgin despite what they did.
Janet Weiss succumbed to Dr. Chienne-Chaud’s charms especially when her lips moved down her body. In later years she would blame the alcohol she had earlier consumed for making her so wanton.<![if !supportFootnotes]><![endif]>
After Dr. Chienne-Chaud had succeeded in nearly driving Janet insane with pleasure, she had, with very little cajoling despite Janet’s later protestations, convinced Janet to reciprocate the favor. It was when Janet reached under Dr. Chienne-Chaud’s dress that she learned the awful truth. Dr. Chienne-Chaud was really a man.<![if !supportFootnotes]><![endif]> Janet’s mind could not take the cognitive dissonance and she fainted dead away.
Brad Darrow came awake in total darkness and discovered that he was not alone in the bed. Calling out Janet’s name she answered him. Janet Weiss awoke to darkness and found that she was not alone in the bed. Janet then kissed her passionately. Brad realized that Janet must have still been under the influence of the alcohol that they had drank earlier because she began to fondle him in an area that she had never touched before. What’s more she allowed for him to touch her breasts, he nearly protested when she pushed his hands away. However her head swooped down and replaced her busy hand.
In the midst of this new experience of pleasure, Brad nearly screamed when Janet’s hair came off in his hands.
He protested that this was not Janet and demanded to know who it was. Dr. Chienne-Chaud’s voice asked if he could not guess. Although he felt as though he were betraying Janet, Brad felt incapable of moving so he let Dr. Chienne-Chaud finish her work. Afterwards she said that he should reciprocate. Brad knew that his was only fair and placed his hand into her panties. He made the same shocking discovery that Janet had. Brad’s reaction however was dive off of the bed and be noisily sick in a porcelain washing bowl.
Dr. Chienne-Chaud left Brad’s room with a disgusted chortle.<![if !supportFootnotes]><![endif]>
Janet lay on her bed weeping, her mind a whirl of confused thoughts and experiences. She was disgusted by what she had done with Dr. Chienne-Chaud, even though he had turned out to be a man, she had thought he was a woman and had not cared. Dr. Chienne-Chaud had awakened an itch in her that needed to be scratched.
When a pounding came on her door she thought it was Brad and quickly opened it. Having had his way with her Dr. Chienne-Chaud had not bothered to lock it when he had left.
The person knocking on the door was the young man Dr. Chienne-Chaud, whom he had called Rocky.
Rocky stared at Janet with a frightened, child-like expression on face. In a slow, almost mechanical manner he asked hide me. He told her that they were mean to him, they used him. They used this, he explained pointing to the region that had earlier fascinated Janet. She stared at it once again. Despite running to her room and standing in the relative chill of her room Rocky had remained as firm as his name. The itch grew stronger the longer she stared at it.
Janet told him what a poor dear he was and kissed him as one would kiss a child. Yet her lips grew hungry and Rocky became her meal. By the end of Janet’s meal, she would no longer be a “good” girl. She knew that she was still under the influence of the alcohol, although by this time she had begun to suspect that the alcohol had either not been champagne or had something added to it because as she lost her virginity, Rocky’s skin seemed to glow with a bright light.
Having satisfied her itch and now knowing that her door was unlocked Janet dressed. She took Rocky by the hand and began searching for Brad’s room. She found him sitting on a bed weeping and looking as if he had seen something horrible. He refused to talk about what had transpired since she had last seen him.
Brad, Janet and Rocky quietly descended the grand staircase, their plan was only to sneak out of this nest of vice and lunacy yet they stopped short at the end of the staircase. Standing in a semicircle at the foot of the staircase were Dr. Chienne-Chaud, his three servants and several of the party celebrants. At first Brad and Janet did not recognize Dr. Chienne-Chaud for he had abandoned most of his costume and now looked like a middle aged man with swarthy European looks and short dark hair dressed in a silk smoking jacket albeit he still wore lipstick, rouge and eye-shadow and mascara.
Dr. Chienne-Chaud began to clap. “Well done Raki, you have gained great power via Miss Weiss, now we must accelerate the process and complete the ceremony of the grail.”
into the large ballroom Brad and Janet were forced into ornate wooden armchairs
with plush silken cushions at the corners on opposite sides of the room. Their arms and legs are tied to the arms and
legs of the chairs. With a mixture of horror and delight they become the
foundations of a new orgy, as Magenta knelt before Brad and Riff Raff knelt
before Janet and orally stimulated them. The partygoers lined up behind Magenta
and Riff Raff and lay down, joining each other by various combinations of
genitals and oral cavity, forming a triangle that stretched across the room.
The apex of the triangle was
The sexual orgy continued for what seemed like hours to Brad and Janet. Raki glowed like a torch in a nimbus of light. Brad realized that Raki must somehow be accumulating orgone energy.<![if !supportFootnotes]><![endif]> Behind Raki the wine glass also glowed and in inexplicable grew larger, there was a full stem and the jagged edged cup section grew fuller. Brad and Janet discovered that the longer they were plugged into this sexual circuit, the less they became aware of their surroundings and gave themselves over to absolute pleasure.
registered on their consciousnesses when Dr. Chienne-Chaude stood behind Conrad
Byrdie and opened his robe. Brad and Janet half expected to see Chienne-Chaude
sodomize the fugitive rock star and were not as shocked by the notion as they
would have been just a few hours earlier. However even in states of extreme
lassitude they were shocked to see Chienne-Chaud pull a pick axe out of his
robe and slam it into the back of Conrad Bydrie’s head just as Raki,
Darrow knew that he was still under the influence of some strange drug when the
blood and brains covering Raki’s naked flesh seemed fade away. Thick red liquid
still dripped and streamed from
Brad felt as thought he were thrust into the agonizing fires of hell and dipped in the ecstatic river of paradise in the same moment. The sensual overload became white noise and blinding white light followed by absolute darkness.
Janet slowly realized that they were sitting at a formal dining table that was
small but elegantly apportioned with spotless white linen, sparkling crystal
ware, gleaming, delicate china and shimmering silverware. Their wine goblets
were filled with a red wine and their plates had perfectly proportioned and
presented dishes of meat and rice. Besides Brad and Janet the diners were
Seeing that they were awake. Dr. Chienne-Chaud raised his glass and said, “To Absent Friends”
His cohorts picked up their glasses and replied, “To absent friends.”
Dr. Chienne-Chaud glared at Brad and Janet who had not touched their glasses. He informed them that if they ever wanted to leave the premises, they would have to eat their dinner.
After participating in the toast Brad and Janet began eating their dinners, finding the taste odd yet not unpleasant. The combination of the wine and Brad’s discomfort made him bolder than he should have been.
“Speaking of absent friends. That was Byrdie that we saw you murder, was it not?”
With a sadistic smile, Dr. Chienne-Chaud answered, “Thus perish all who reject my love. We took in Byrdie when he was a hunted man. He seemed to have a certain quality that we sought, yet as it turns out he possessed very little of that quality and very little stamina either.” Turning his gaze on Janet he told her to, please eat more of her bird.
“I thought this was pork”, Janet asked, in growing confusion. Like Brad she found her clarity of thought was dissipating, as her thoughts became cloudy and an odd lassitude overcame her mind and body.
Dr. Chienne-Chaud tore the tablecloth away from the table revealing that it was a glass coffin in which the body of Conrad Byrdie rested. Portions of the body had been butchered for cuts of meat.<![if !supportFootnotes]><![endif]>
At this point the account is hazy because Brad and Janet’s recollections of these events were not entirely lucid.
Janet recall being carried down stairs to an indoor pool. There were several
naked people already swimming and participating in orgiastic behavior. The
waters were warm and slick. Once in the waters and among the other
participants, Brad and Janet could no longer prevent their libidos from taking
control, they joined in the orgy with abandon not entirely conscious how they
participated or with whom. They both seem to recall being pulled out of the
pool on a few occasions to have relations with Raki,
The sequence events that follows was pieced together from what little forensic evidence remained at the remains of the Frankenstein House and from the conflicting accounts of Brad and Janet, who were not deliberately contradicting each other but rather seem to have perceived the events in two different ways.
Riff-Raff quickly returned what appeared to be a visor with one large crimson lens.<![if !supportFootnotes]><![endif]> A bolt of light shot from the cyclopean device directly at Dr. Chienne-Chaud. Dr. Chienne-Chaud must have sensed something at the last minute and rolled away. The scarlet beam instead struck the glowing goblet, which shattered in a display of multi-hued shards of light that resembled fireworks. The goblet lost its glow and resembled nothing so much as a blackened and melted metal sculpture.
When the goblet shattered so did the most of the spell that had held Brad, Janet and most of the participants of the orgy enthralled. They boiled out of the pool like a disturbed hornet’s nest, milling about seeking to escape the room. Dr. Chienne-Chaude took full advantage of this confusion to mix among the crowd.<![if !supportFootnotes]><![endif]>
Raki rushed at Riff-Raff who turned the full force of the scarlet beam on Raki. Raki’s skin burst into flame and Riff-Raff was forced to retreat, although he kept firing the beam at Raki. Raki rolled on the tile floor slowly snuffing out his flaming body. His blackened and blistered skin seemed to melt off of his body, puddling like an oil slick on the tile floor.<![if !supportFootnotes]><![endif]> As the skin melted off of Raki’s form, his body lost mass and revealed not muscle and bone but rather a solid metal body, shaped like a human body.<![if !supportFootnotes]><![endif]>
Riff-Raff went chasing after Dr. Chienne-Chaud who had taken his departure when Raki had confronted Riff-Raff. It is known that either Dr. Chienne-Chaud set the mansion on fire to cover his escape or else Riff-Raff or else Riff-Raff set the mansion aflame as indiscriminately fired at the fleeing Dr. Chienne-Chaud. Or he may have done so deliberately to destroy all evidence. Both Brad Darrow and Janet Weiss noted that upon their return to the ballroom both Riff Raff and Magenta had altered demeanors, they acted dispassionately, their movements fluid but seemed oddly mechanical as if devoid of emotion.
Dr. Chienne-Chaud’s laboratory must have contained some extremely volatile chemicals, this combined with some ruptured natural gas lines caused the house to explode in a spectacular fireball.
Still half drugged a naked and disoriented Brad and Janet finally stumbled onto the doorstep of Professor Everett Scott, two days late. They slurred out their wild tale before falling into a two-day stupor.
After they had recovered sufficiently Brad and Janet returned to the debris that had been the Frankenstein mansion, accompanied by Doctor Everett Scott. They found the cyclopean device that Riff Raff had been using, damaged and shattered. There were also some odd footprints leading away from the burnt ruins and into the nearby woods. The tracks were sunken as if by made by a person with a great deal of weight and the woods were trampled or simply broken through as if a human sized steam roller had gone through the woods.
Local authorities investigated the incident and concluded that Brad and Janet probably stumbled onto a group of beatniks and reefer addicts. They had either been forced to participate or had joined willing in a reefer orgy. As always, the combination of drugs, sex and rock and roll ended tragically.
Although there was no physical evidence to charge Brad or Janet with any sort of crime, the local authorities kept them under close surveillance from this point onwards.
Casting Lots Part Two:
The Presidential Affair
Brad and Janet’s
engagement was a casualty of the
One of Darrow’s
projects for Everett Scott was to learn about the functions and repair the few
alien devices<![if !supportFootnotes]><![endif]>
that had survived the destruction of the Frankenstein place in
In 1955, the man called
Tzing Jao or Yellow Claw moved from
Although Tzing Jao is often regarded as a copycat of Fu Manchu, he was actually quite more than that; in a very real sense Tzing Jao was Fu Manchu. In early 1932, having successfully grown a homunculi that was his genetic duplicate, Fu Manchu had attempted to recreate the controversial animus klonos experiment of Dr. Praetorius<![if !supportFootnotes]><![endif]>. The homunculi was, using the process described by Herr Doktor Kraft, forced into maturation from embryonic state to mature adult in less than a years time. Due to its forced maturation it was mindless, which was the state that Fu Manchu desired, since he planned to imprint his own mind upon the younger body. Using the starstone and one of the Lemurian power crystals and applying the psychic techniques taught to him at Rache Churan, Fu Manchu poured his consciousness into the empty vessel that was the homunculi. Yet rather than the experiencing the vitality of a new life, Fu Manchu felt himself fading, the world going black as his consciousness, his very being seemed to evaporate. Fu Manchu pulled back from his attempt to transfer his consciousness into the new body. Fu Manchu fell into a coma.
As Fu Manchu slept his duplicate awoke. This process had not led to the transferal of Fu Manchu’s consciousness into a new body nor had had created a satellite body that shared Fu Manchu’s consciousness as did Dracula’s soul clones, but rather Fu Manchu’s process incompletely imprinted Fu Manchu’s personality and memories upon the younger body. Either due to some imperfection in the process, the unfinished transference or some flaw in the homunculi body, the double’s personality was less forceful and hesitant about making decisions. It also had less intelligence than Fu Manchu and could not fully use its wide assortment of knowledge. However for some reason its ability to use the psionic training learned at Rache Churan was much greater than Fu Manchu’s. The duplicate also aged rapidly, about one year per month and so had to be given the elixir vitae to stay alive. The duplicate’s body however had an odd reaction to the elixir in that it gave his skin a yellowish, jaundiced color. The less forceful personality and the need for the elixir vitae made this duplicate of Fu Manchu subordinate to the original one. The duplicate adopted the so-called Fu-Manchu moustache and beard ascribed to Fu Manchu in most pictorial representations. He was named Tzing Jao but went by the code name The Yellow Claw.<![if !supportFootnotes]><![endif]>
Although Fu Manchu never attempted the animus klonos process again Tzing Jao did try this procedure once, believing that with his greater command of psionic power, he would succeed where Fu Manchu failed. Following the same procedure a homunculi was made from the blood, tissue and semen of Yellow Claw. When the transference into the younger body was attempted, the result was nearly the same as with Fu Manchu’s attempt. However since this homunculi was the homunculi of a homunculi and since the personality and memories were also second hand this was an extremely flawed copy of a copy. The second hand duplicate needed to keep the power crystals and Star Stone used to create him within his proximity or he would sicken and die. To solve this dilemma the star stone and power crystals were set into many rings which the soul clone wore. This duplicate of Fu Manchu was given the code name The Mandarin.<![if !supportFootnotes]><![endif]>
After Fu Manchu’s failure to rig the
When Tzing Jao arrived in
James Chan establised a relationship with The Yelllow Claw’s grand-niece Suwan. Because of her love for Chan, she often tacitly aided Chan to defeat the Yellow Claw’s schemes. One might wonder why Tzing Jao did not simply eliminate the meddling girl. This is because she was one of the daughters of Fu Manchu, and had been placed in the Yellow Claw’s operation as Fu Manchu’s agent. Su Wan’s actual place in Tzing Jao’s organization still remains undetermined, at times she seemed a willing participant in his plans, at other times she aided Tzing Jao’s enemies. To Jimmy Chan she claimed that Tzing Jao mesmerized her to his bidding but that her love for Jimmy often overrode this conditioning. This may be true. However it may also be that like Fah Lo Suee, Su Wan pursued her own agenda, alternately aiding and opposing at her whim.
In late 1956, Tzing Jao contacted
Dr. Henry King, the leader of the Symbion<![if !supportFootnotes]><![endif]>
movement. He told Dr. King that he knew his true identity and unless Dr. King
used his powers in Tzing Jao’s service, he would expose him, and show his true
form to his wife. Dr. King readily agreed.<![if !supportFootnotes]><![endif]>
Yellow Claw No. 4 contained two stories that dealt with two different
individuals with differing types of psionic powers. Both of these men were
forced to work for the Yellow Claw. In fact both Five Million Sleepwalkers and The
Thought Master were about two of the incidents that occurred while Henry
King worked for Tzing Jao. Shortly after both of these schemes were defeated by
Jimmy Chan, The Yellow Claw embarked on his most ambitious plot of all. He
planned to kidnap the President of the
It was one thing to try and crippled the might of the United States by acts of sabotage, terrorism, or by undermining the American way of life through seduction, corruption and propaganda, it was quite another to directly challenge the might of the United States.
The Yellow Claw assembled a rather motley team of villains to carry out the abduction. The members of the team included Dan McCormick, the Electrical Man.<![if !supportFootnotes]><![endif]> Mr. Zero<![if !supportFootnotes]><![endif]>, Professor James Xavier<![if !supportFootnotes]><![endif]> and an animated skeleton called Skull Face.<![if !supportFootnotes]><![endif]>
Just as President Eisenhower began
his vacation at
Bizarre as it sounds, the quartet of villains made their way towards the President’s golfing party disguised as golfers. While it may seem incredulous that given their respective odd appearances that they could have pulled this imposture off, they did so. Acting as errant golfers, the approached the President’s party. When the Secret Service sought to stop them they disabled or killed the agents. Once they had the President in their custody they vanished from sight.
Naturally the Secret Service was thrown into a quandary. They reluctantly informed Mrs. Eisenhower and her family and the Vice President. They decided to keep who everything kept quiet for the sake of the country they had to maintain the pretense that the President was still on vacation.
Yellow Claw waited forty-eight
hours before making his ransom demand. For the safe return of the President, he
wanted two of the most populous of the Eastern states turned over to him. If
this was not done the President would be killed, quite gruesomely on national
television. Prior to his death however the President would appear on television
and declare war on the
Once it was known who had
kidnapped the President, James Chan was brought into the loop.<![if !supportFootnotes]><![endif]>
Chan was in
The Daredevil was a masked vigilante who fought crime, saboteurs and
foreign agents from the late thirties to the late forties. There are
conflicting stories about his origins. One was that as a young man Bart Hill
and his family had been abducted by criminals. The criminals killed his parents
and tortured young Bart. The trauma rendered him mute and when he grew older he
fought crime with a bi-colored suit of blue and red, a boomerang symbol on his
chest that symbolized the curved scar on his chest. Another origin suggests he
was raised by aborigines in
During the course of his career, the Daredevil became famous for his
daring excursions into Nazi held
After his identity was exposed, he changed his name from Bart Hill to
Bill Hart, married his college sweetheart and moved to
When Chan was contacted about the
President’s kidnapping, he asked the Daredevil to aid him, since the Daredevil
also had a great deal of experience in dealing with Tzing Jao. Since the Yellow
Claw had recruited some powerful allies, the Daredevil suggested contacting
someone he had worked with in the past, Lance Hale. Hale was a soldier of
fortune who had inherited a diamond mine in
After this incident Hale once again took up his quest to reclaim his inheritance. The diamond mine led to underground temple which was the entrance to an underground empire ruled by Queen Alida. She ruled over beast-men and African natives. Her kingdom was under constant attacks by Lizard Men, the King of which wanted Queen Alida as his consort. She asked Lance Hale to be her champion, promising him immortality and her hand. Alida had gained immortality by walking through the Flames of Life. Lance walked through the flames of life and then drove away the Lizard men. However he decided not to become Alida’s consort and left the underground kingdom. Once back in the outside world, he left behind the trappings of a Great White Hunter and went back to nature, becoming a Tarzan imitator.
However, the Daredevil had not
seen Hale in some time. James Chan used an African contact, Richard Lansing.
Chan and the Daredevil used the
Daredevil’s supersonic jet which had been built by Nelson aviation to travel to
the Federation of Rhodesia and Nysaland. At
Jane Eugenia Smith-Jones was
Jane rode with James Chan and the Daredevil to where Hale had sequestered himself. Along the way she told them a fantastic story.
True to Queen Alida’s word Hale had found himself immortal from his exposure to the Flame of Life. He retained his youth and healed from almost any injury. Hale ran afoul of some Gaboni who burned him at the stake. When he did not immediately die from the severe burns they roasted him until his body was entirely consumed. Although his body could not rebuild itself from cinders, Hale did not die but existed in a half conscious spirit form.<![if !supportFootnotes]><![endif]>
His disembodied consciousness, his soul as it were, drifted invisibly in a state of limbo. Hale watched events unfold but could not affect them. He saw a group of poachers shoot and kill a small family of gorillas, despite the pleas of the gorillas not to shoot them. Hale had heard rumors of talking apes, but always had thought that if they were true, were accounts of Mangani who had learned English or French. He had never really believed that the tall tales of London-on-the-Thames was true.<![if !supportFootnotes]><![endif]>
Hale felt a great rage at this wanton killing, a desire to wreak vengeance on the poacher. This echoed the hatred and desire for vengeance that the dying bull ape felt. This psychic resonance somehow drew Hale’s consciousness into the body of the gorilla and bound his essence to this body. Hale’s immortality was transferred to this gorilla’s body and its wounds quickly healed. However the gorilla’s mind had already gone. Lance Hale found himself trapped in this immortal gorilla body.
Depressed by this turn of events, Hale became a recluse. Had he been able he would have committed suicide. Chan and the Daredevil met with Hale and convinced him to help fight against the Yellow Claw once more. Convincing him had not been easy and they had to promise to help him find a way to remove his consciousness from the gorilla body.
While James Chan and the Daredevil were tracking down Lance Hale, another group of people were independently working against the Yellow Claw’s plan, although inadvertently.
Members of the think tank run by
Charles Javier and Niles Caulder were determined to retrieve the visor which
Diego Javier had stolen. Brad Darrow,
who had retrieved the visor from the wreckage of the Frankenstein place was
especially motivated to retrieve it.
Brad Darrow believed that the robot that Dr. Chienne-Chaud had built
would be able to track the stolen visor. However the robot had last been seen
walking off the
Using the pier from where the
robot had disappeared, Zelas searched the ocean surface until she discovered
the ocean currents and tidal forces had deposited the metallic body. Digging it
out from the silt, Namora lifted the robot from the ocean floor and carried it
back onto dry land. However as the circuitry dried out the Robot activated and
once again tried to carry out its last directive; to kill. When the robot attacked Zelas Victoria N
Starr stepped into the robot’s path and stopped it could. She told Darrow and
Sampson that she had stopped the robot through power of love. She claimed to be
an avatar of the goddess of love known as Aphrodite, Venus, Ishtar and a
hundred other names. She demonstrated this ability on them and although they doubted
her claims to be Venus incarnated, they realized she did possess some sort of
power. It would later be learned that Victoria Starr was one of the identities
Zelas was called away to help
forestall a tidal wave so
Baron Igescu had replaced the entire exterior of the robot with an articulated shell that resembled a Greek statue of an Olympian. He had induced his fellow Og to manifest as flesh surrounding the metallic frame. The flesh had, or so it was believed at the time, been destroyed in the fire at the Frankenstein place. While repairing the salt corrosion Darrow and Sampson discovered that Baron Igescu or Royal Regardie had built offensive and defensive weapons into the robot’s body. This gave the Marvel boys some inkling of the regenerative powers of the flesh, since if the weapons were deployed, the flesh would be severely damaged. They were able to use the robot to track the stolen visor. However the robot could not tell them where the visor was so they had to send it after the visor and follow it, cross country. Veus accompanied Brad Darrow and Jack Samson in case the robot went out of control once more.
James Chan, The Daredevil and
Lance Hale returned to the
After a romantic interlude (not depicted in the comic) a nude and weaponless Jimmy Chan was captured by the Yellow Claw’s agents. He tried to resist but was shocked senseless by Electro. When Chan regained consciousness he was led into a large bedroom where President Eisenhower was being held captive. While alive Eisenhower had been drugged and placed into a bed with several naked women. Tzing Jao offered Chan a chance to join his organization. If he refused he would be tortured to death. Chan refused and was taken to the torture chamber.
Suwan begged for mercy but the Yellow Claw was deaf to her cries. She refused to watch him be tortured and stalked from the room. Once she was alone and in a secure location, she contacted Daredevil using Jimmy Chan’s communicator. She gave Daredevil and Hale the location of where Chan and the President were being held.
Brad Darrow, Bob Sampson and Venus
followed the robot to a decaying yet palatial estate on
Daredevil and Lance Hale arrived at the coordinates that Suwan had given them just in time to see a robot blast a hole into the wall of the estate. The robot was accompanied by two young men and a young woman who followed the machine into the fractured wall. Quickly landing his jet, Daredevil and Lance Hale followed.
As the robot burst through the wall, James Chan was about to be executed. Electro was supposed to send electrical bolts through the lower portion of his body while Diego Javier was supposed to use the visor to sear his upper body. However the startling entrance of the robot granted him an unexpected reprieve. Mr. Zero turned his freeze ray on the robot encasing it in ice. Lance Hale engaged the Electro, Daredevil confronted Diego Javier while Brad Darrow and Bob Sampson were attacked by the living skeleton. Lance Hale dodged Electro’s bolts but Venus was encased in ice by Mr. Zero’s ray. Hale picked up Mr. Zero and threw him at the living skeleton. The skeleton flew apart and Mr. Zero was knocked unconscious. While Daredevil effectively outfought Diego Javier, Javier’s vision allowed him to see Daredevil’s old injuries and place stun blasts that took its toll on Daredevil. Both Brad Darrow and Lance Hale attacked Javier. Hale rendered knocked him out with one of the skeleton’s leg bones.
After freeing itself of the ice, the robot also freed Venus. He then short circuited Electro.
The Yellow Claw and his former Nazi ally fled while the fight raged, perhaps wrongfully believing that the United States Army was directly behind the invaders. Once freed from his bonds, James Chan found the drugged and compromised President. After ensuring his safety, Chan then gave chase to the Yellow Claw. In what appeared to be a chapel of some sort inside the mansion, Chan discovered the Yellow Claw sitting upon a throne. Although he approached cautiously the figure on the throne, he set off a booby trap and the figure exploded. Chan was saved from injury by the quick thinking of the Daredevil and the robot.
President Eisenhower was returned
Rather incensed that the Intelligence agencies had been caught with their pants down, President Eisenhower created a subsidiary division of ALSTR, named OTLAS (Office of Technological Logistical Analysis and Scientific Investigation) giving them funding from the Central Intelligence Agency under the umbrella of the CIA’s Directorate of Science and Technology and Office of Scientific Intelligence. This subdivision was comprised of two sections, one was the intelligence gathering and investigational section which comprised the think tank to which Brad Darrow and Bob Sampson belonged. The other was an operational section led by James Chan, on detached duty from the FBI.
After a year as Director of Operations for OTLAS James Chan received a promotion to CIALD. Dr. Niles Caulder took over as chief of operations but his autocratic methods of management led to Hale and Hart leaving the organization. Caulder filled the roster with his own hand picked team, which consisted of Caulder’s group was supposed to give support to the Bay of Pigs invasion but were busy dealing with a terrorist attack by The Brotherhood. OTLAS was blamed for the debacle of the invasion and was disbanded. The two sections went their own way, Charles Javier transferring the operations to his School for Exceptional Children and Caulder forming a clandestine private organization.
<![if !supportFootnotes]><![endif]> The Legion of the Strange was the nickname applied to the CIALD division Office of Technological Logistics and Scientific investigation, or OTLAS. Apparently the nick name was derived from its LS acronym and from the people who made up its organization. The name carried over when OTLAS was disbanded and two privately funded organizations with quasi government agency status took over its responsibilities. These two organizations formed the basis for the fictional organizations known as The Doom Patrol and X-Men.
<![if !supportFootnotes]><![endif]> In ‘Rocky Horror Show’ play and ‘Rocky Horror Picture Show’ film, Richard O’Brien’s dramatic portrayals of the Denton Affair, Bradley ‘Brad’ Majors was portrayed by Barry Bostwick.
<![if !supportFootnotes]><![endif]> Janet Weiss is now known to be the true name
of Brad’s girlfriend. Her father was the straightlaced Mr. Weiss; her mother,
the former child prostitute Violet Bellocq; thus she is
<![if !supportFootnotes]><![endif]> The killer tomatoes were a species of tomato plant that gained sentience and attacked humanity. The sentience seems to have come about from deliberate hybridization between a tomato plant and the plant species known as the Pod People Plants. Outbreaks occur at random periods.
<![if !supportFootnotes]><![endif]> The old
Frankenstein place as it was referred to by the citizens of Denton had indeed
once been owned by a member of the famous or infamous Frankenstein family,
although he had always insisted that he be referred to as Dr. Franken-steen.
Dr. Frederick Frankenstein had purchased this property on the banks of the
<![if !supportFootnotes]><![endif]> Royal
Regardie or Riff Raff was not really a hunchback. The hunchback was part of his
costume, which played a ritual significance. The hunchback was a symbol of
fertility in Og mythology. This coupled with the Og penchant for blood and
sacrifice, may point to a MesoAmerican origin for the Og. That is the original
terrestrial population from which the Og were derived may have been in part
Meso-American. Kokopelli was a hunchbacked fertility god among the
Additionally, the Og were derived from an
<![if !supportFootnotes]><![endif]> The
observant reader will have noted by now that these events seem very similar to
that of those found in the play and cult film The Rocky Horror Picture Show.
This is not an accident. Playwright Richard O’Brien wildly distorted the events
that happened that weekend in
<![if !supportFootnotes]><![endif]> There is
some controversy over the name of this creature. Although most accounts call
him Rocky, it may have in fact been Raki. Raki or Rangi was the Oceanic god of
the sky whose death created heaven and life on earth. The name Raki then may
have been symbolic for Baron Igenescu’s people and their return to
<![if !supportFootnotes]><![endif]> As stated earlier Richard O’Brien used the barebones of the Denton Affair for his musical extravaganza, The Rocky Horror Picture Show. His contacts however must have been survivors who knew the truth behind the Affair, for not even Brad and Janet knew that they were dealing with aliens.
<![if !supportFootnotes]><![endif]> Janet Weiss was absolutely correct in blaming the wine, at least this particular vintage. All of the food and drink that Janet and Brad imbibed that week were laced with high powered aphrodisiacs. Baron Igescu and his people often used these as part of their rituals. See Farmer, P. J. Image of the Beast, Playboy Press, 1979.
<![if !supportFootnotes]><![endif]> Dr. Chienne-Chaud was in fact the name used in the Denton Affair. It was a bit of a joke by Baron Igescu (see attached dossier excerpt for detailed information on Baron Igescu) for his transvestite character. Translated freely it means hot female-dog or more colloquially, Hot Bitch which is how Igescu viewed himself, in this guise as a sexy woman. Richard O’Brien however translated it literally as hot dog. This translation coupled with Igescu’s supposed raising of a dead man automatically brought the association of Frank N. Furter, which tied in with the Frankenstein mansion. In O’Brien’s version it was quite obvious that Frank N. Furter was a man dressed in women’s clothing. The Baron’s transvestitism however does not seem to have been motivated by simply by sexual desire but rather by his need to take the female role in an arcane occult ceremony. He appears to have been conducting these rites without the knowledge of most of his fellow Ogs.
<![if !supportFootnotes]><![endif]> Dr. Chienne-Chaud’s or rather Baron Igescu’s sexual relations with both Brad Darrow sand Janet Weiss were also not primarily motivated by sexual desire but rather for ritualistic reasons. Darrow and Weiss represented the female and male principles important for the grailing and subsequent immantization ceremony. As the conductor of the rite Igescu had to have been in intimate contact with these principles in order for the energy to be conducted from them into him. Prior to the happenstance appearance of Brad and Janet his candidates for the male and female principle had been the incestuous twins, Riff-Raff and Magenta. However he was rather fond of them and did not want to lose them when it came time for their lives to be sacrificed to the grail. Igescu was also not certain that the ritual would succeed and so may have been holding Riff-Raff and Magenta in reserve for a later attempt.
<![if !supportFootnotes]><![endif]> Orgone energy is the primordial life force energy that pervades all organic life, first discovered by Dr. William Reich in 1933. Sexuality and especially the orgasm are the means in which the human body releases orgone energy. Dr. Reich created orgone accumulators by which he could capture and contain orgone energy. Brad believed that the growing grail like device was a form of orgone accumulator. He was not far wrong, the purpose of this orgy was to channel psychosexual energy into this device.
After The Denton Affair, Brad entered the area of physics and biochemical research and did some research on orgones and bions. He discovered that Dr. Reich was partially correct in that orgones and bions did exist but were extradimensional in origin. Bions were how the Tocs and Ogs were able to build their physical forms and how the Grails were grown from the shards of broken grails.
<![if !supportFootnotes]><![endif]> Again although there was no physical evidence to substantiate whether cannibalism, accidental or intentional was committed by Brad, Janet, Igescu and his cohorts. However hearkening back to the ritual that Igescu was attempting, the three sacrifices of the Immantization were supposed to partake of the flesh of the Grailing Trigger.
<![if !supportFootnotes]><![endif]> In Richard O’Brien’s account of events the glowing goblet or Grail was referred to as the Sonic Transducer. The Grail was a device used by Baron Igenscu’s people to traverse the universe by converting the travelers to energy. The sonic transducer was according to the Rocky Horror screenplay, “This sonic transducer - it is, I suppose, some kind of audio-vibratory, physiomolecular transport device… A device which is capable of breaking down solid matter and then projecting it through space, and - who knows -perhaps even time itself!”
<![if !supportFootnotes]><![endif]> Janet Weiss saw this cyclopean visor as a hand held raygun. Also Riff Raff had miraculously lost his hump.
The Weiss account differs slightly in that she saw Riff-Raff fire at Dr.
Chienne-Chaud, who ducked the blast. The goblet exploded and some of the shards
<![if !supportFootnotes]><![endif]> The burnt and melted flesh that sloughed off of Raki
reappeared some years later in
<![if !supportFootnotes]><![endif]> As further investigation would uncover this metal body was in fact the robot known at various points of its existence as Adam Link, Robotman, the Human Robot and Vision. In some manner had Baron Igescu had found a way to cloth the robotic form with flesh. Further information is included in the Baron Igescu attachment.
<![if !supportFootnotes]><![endif]> Although they did not know it at the time
Bradley Darrow and Bob Sampson had a connection. Bob Samson was the son of Mark
Sampson and Bradley Darrow was the grandson of Jack Darrow. In the late 1880s
Mark Samson and Jack Darrow were two orphan boys who became fast friends as
they train hopped across the country.
After a train accident they were nursed to health by Professor Amos
Henderson who became their foster parent. They accompanied
the Project Thor was shut down Mark Sampson returned to the Universal
<![if !supportFootnotes]><![endif]> The devices were not extraterrestrial in the sense that they had physically traveled from another world but rather were physically terrestrial, built on Earth from current Earth technology however their operational principles were based on science and technology from the Capellean and Eridanean civilizations. It is a testimony to “Riff Raff” genius that he was able to create these hybrid devices.
<![if !supportFootnotes]><![endif]> The original experiment was to create a duplicate body for Dracula, a vessel for his soul so that he could escape damnation. The experiment did not work as planned creating two duplicates of Dracula, a good one and an evil one. See the essay Best Fangs Forward for details.
The Yellow Claw was used as Fu Manchu’s spearhead against the
<![if !supportFootnotes]><![endif]> The Mandarin became best known for his forays in the late Fifties and early Sixties against the institutions of American capitalism and economic expansion. His most renowned opponent was the man known as Iron Man, whose self appointed mission was to fight against the foes of capitalism and the expansion of American business into the global market. Many however consider Iron Man to have been a stooge for the Hughes Corporation since he was not so quick to spring into action when rivals of the Hughes Corporation were targeted by such terrorists as the Mandarin.
<![if !supportFootnotes]><![endif]> For details see Rohmer, Sax President Fu Manchu
<![if !supportFootnotes]><![endif]> This costumed adventurer was actually Bart Hill who operated between 1927 and 1949. When Tzing Jao first came to the attention of the public he used his great ability to project illusions to make it appear that he was a giant with long sharp teeth and taloned fingers. However he suffered a devastating injury from a boomerang thrown by the Daredevil that left him unable to use this ability to project illusions except on a minor scale.
Suwan was not biologically related to Tzing Jao. She was an orphaned child of
two of his servants who had perished during the Japanese occupation of
<![if !supportFootnotes]><![endif]> In Atlas Comics and Marvel Comics, James Chan has consistently been portrayed as James Woo. The Chan family had licensing agreements with various radio, film, newspapers and other comic book companies to use their names and likenesses. Atlas and Marvel circumvented this by giving James Chan a different name and no mention of his famous father. James Chan was the second son of famed Chinese-American detective Charlie Chan. James Chan assisted his father in several investigations while attending college. After college, James Chan was drafted into the United States Army. After disembarkation he finished a law degree and found a position with the Federal Bureau of Investigation. Chan was hired by the FBI to investigate and if needed to infiltrate Asian criminal and espionage activity.
<![if !supportFootnotes]><![endif]> Symbion started as a drug rehabilitation program in the late 1940’s using group therapy and behavior medication. It soon developed into philosophical movement of near cult status.
<![if !supportFootnotes]><![endif]> Dr. King was in reality Henri Roi Wainright, the brother of Alexander Wainwright Luthor (Silver Age Luthor) and John Wainwright (Odd John). In his own right Henry King was also known as the notorious criminals Brainwave and Dr. Psycho. In the Dreamlands he was known as Dr. Sivana. Henry King had extremely powerful telepathy and he could also manipulate ectoplasm to create animated constructs.
<![if !supportFootnotes]><![endif]> The account depicted in What If Vol 2, No 9, uses an Atlas character named Electro a Russian assassin. Dan McCormick was a carnival worker who somehow gained the ability to absorb electricity. Claiming that they would help him, two scientists Dr. Lawrence and Dr. Riga experimented upon him. They used his self generated electrical field to power a remote control device that they planted on his neck. Seizing control of him they caused him to commit robbery and murder. A sanitized account of this was made into the film, The Mad Made Monster. A fuller account is in the Lawrence Luthor article. Dr. Lawrence was actually Lawrence Luthor, the half brother of Dr. King. This may not be as small a world as it seems. McCormick was attached to Intelligence operations during and after WWII, as was Henry King.
<![if !supportFootnotes]><![endif]> According to the published Marvel version of these events this was the Cold Warrior, an anti-communist who wore a suit that generated freezing temperatures. In reality this was the criminal known as Mr. Zero. Zero was a scientist named Victor Fries who accidentally exposed himself to a substance that he created to generate zero temperature. After his exposure Fries had to stay in below zero temperatures to survive, either a specially built apartment or an environmentally controlled suit. He created a gun that projected a freeze ray, although some maintain it was simply a glorified flashlight that sprayed liquid nitrogen. He went on an ice theme crime spree until stopped by Batman. This took place shortly before the kidnapping of the President, although the account was not published until 1959.
<![if !supportFootnotes]><![endif]> Professor Diego Javier was the cousin of Charles Javier. Diego Javier discovered that he was going blind and developed a substance to arrest his sight loss. His blindness halted and his vision improved dramatically. His vision grew beyond that of the common human spectrum seeing into the ultraviolet, infrared and x ray wavelengths; seeing though people's clothing, and into their bodily tissues. Javier's visual capacity increases and his ability to control it decreases. Eventually he could no longer see the world as a human would, but only in forms of lights and textures that his brain is unable to fully comprehend. His behavior became increasingly erratic, and Xavier's associates assumed that he was going insane.
After accidentally killing a friend, Xavier went on the run, using his x-ray vision first to work in a carnival, and then to win at gambling in a casino. Xavier's eyes are altered along with his vision: first they become black and silver, and then entirely black. To hide his startling appearance, he wears dark wrap-around sunglasses at all times.
Javier drove out to a desert and wandered into a religious tent revival. He tells the pastor that he was beginning to see things at the edges of the universe, including an "eye that sees us all" in the center of the universe. The pastor replies that what he sees is "sin and the devil," and declares the biblical quote of "If thine eye offends thee... pluck it out!" and Javier chooses to blind himself rather than see anything more. Yet even this drastic measure is not enough for even without his eyes, his optic nerves still operate.
This tragic tale, with minor revisions became the basis for the film X The Man with the X Ray Eyes.
Desperate for help, he turns to his cousin for help.
Diego Javier is taken into the think tank run by Dr. Javier and Niles Caulder.
One attempt to control his vision is to adapt the visor found in the wreckage
at the Frankenstein place at the end of the
<![if !supportFootnotes]><![endif]> Various theories have been promulgated as to who this pile of walking bones really was. Some believe that it was the Kathulos from Robert E. Howard Skull Face story, some believe that it was Dr. Anton Phibes. However these two possibilities seem improbable given their histories as recounted in The Demon Head article. Others have speculated that this was the animated corpse of Thulsa Doom, the villainous sorcerer who opposed Kull, Conan and Red Sonja. However considering that this animated pile of bones showed no sign of great magical powers, it seems unlikely that it was Doom. It seems that for once, the comics were right on the money and the Skull Face of this group was exactly whom writer Glut claimed it to be.
<![if !supportFootnotes]><![endif]> What If No 9 states that Jimmy Woo had been assigned to be the personal bodyguard of the President. He had thwarted three attempts on the Presidents life. However instead of sticking close to the President to ensure his safety, Woo went to collect a group of individuals to help him safeguard the President. While he was gathering this team, the President was snatched. Woops! The Agents of Atlas version states that Jimmy Woo (Chan) was still involved in fighting against the Yellow Claw and was informed of the kidnapping due to his expertise on the Claw. This seems closer to the truth.
In the Marvel comics depiction of these events Woo (Chan) contacted a costumed
vigilante named 3D
<![if !supportFootnotes]><![endif]> Probably escorting the criminal Coy Banton and several riverboat passengers to Mombas, as recounted in the film Tarzan the Magnificent.
This may be similar to what happened to Ayesha after she was immolated in the
Flame of Life. She was “reincarnated” in the body of a girl in
The gorillas from London-On-The-Thames were mutants. A scientists in
<![if !supportFootnotes]><![endif]> Kyra Zelas had been a young woman dying of tuberculosis given an experimental serum designed to enable her body to adapt to the disease so it would be non-lethal. The experiment was successful and she was able to adapt to any injury or disease. Yet it was not only her internal systems that became adaptive but her external body as well. She acquired chameleon like abilities with her body changing color, texture and shape as she adapted in response to social situations. At first this ability was unconscious but she eventually gained control of the process to become a true shapeshifter. For more information please read Adapt and Survive, Survive and Prosper: The Shifting Identities of Kyra Zelas, the Adaptive Ultimate
<![if !supportFootnotes]><![endif]> The Oddian mutation, so named after the man who most popularized its existence, has been around for at least 300 hundred years yet it occurs randomly through the global population and with extreme infrequence. Despite a thorough and diligent research Odd John only found twenty or so individuals out of world population of 2 billion.
The Oddian mutation is the flipside of a regularly occurring mutation, an abnormality that occurs once every 800 births caused by an irregularity with autosome pair 21. The result is Down’s syndrome, which occurs at random through the entire global population. A person with the Down’s Syndrome mutation will have certain unique physical traits that occur in various degrees in all people with Down’s syndrome despite their ethnic origin. Physically they have short, stocky bodies with thick hands and feet. They usually have broad, short heads with small low-set ears, small concave saddle-shaped or flattened noses, relatively large ridged tongues that roll over a protruding lower lip, low muscle tone, and loose joints. Frequently, their eyes have an East Asian-like appearance due to an epicanthic fold. In addition to a propensity towards various life threatening diseases, they generally suffer from mental retardation and age at an accelerated rate.
The Oddian mutation is even rarer than that of the Down’s Syndrome but it may derive from the same source. Some research suggests that The Oddian Syndrome may be a further mutation of the Down’s Syndrome, one which manifests some converse traits. The similarities between Down’s syndrome are its random nature, unique but uniform physical traits and extremely low fertility. Both Down’s Syndrome and the Oddian syndrome often manifest in families without other occurrences of the syndrome and do so through out the global population. As noted previously people with Down’s Syndrome have unique but uniform physical characteristics, those who have the Oddian Syndrome also have unique but uniform physical characteristics, specifically large heads, large eyes, thin builds, large elongated hands. These physical traits are the converse of those who have Down’s Syndrome.
One of the most noticeable converse traits between Down’s Syndrome and Oddian Syndrome is intelligence, which in those with the Oddian Syndrome is above normal and often includes some psionic ability. Another converse trait is aging, those with Oddian Syndrome age at a decelerated rate rather than an accelerated rate as do those having Down’s Syndrome, giving people with the Oddian Syndrome lifespans that can far exceed the norm. It is these traits of high intelligence and long life spans that are most often used to illustrate the notion that those with Oddian Syndrome represent the next evolutionary step or that they are homo superior. Yet these two desirable traits are counterbalanced by a host of other traits that are not so desirable. The extensive lifespan of those with the Oddian Syndrome also has a prolonged maturation period, beginning with an overlong gestating period. Odd John was forcibly removed from his mother’s womb at eleven months but seemed like a premature infant. He was in an incubator for a year before he was deemed mature enough to be taken home. Those who have the Oddian Syndrome can remain in an infantile state for several years. It took Odd John five years before he could walk and talk. Another Oddian was in an infantile state for eighteen years.
Like those born with Down’s Syndrome those with the Oddian Syndrome often have some physical malady. Of the people that Odd John discovered, one was autistic, one had been born without legs, another was born without eyes, one had mismatched eyes- one being much larger than the other and one had a malformed head. Another trait that those with Oddian Syndrome share with people with Down’s syndrome is extremely low fertility. There are only few instances of person with Oddian Syndrome conceiving a child with a “normal” and only one or two instances of a child born from two people with the Oddian Syndrome.
Despite the seemingly beneficial traits of an extended life span, high intelligence and psionic abilities, because of its infrequence, its random occurrence, the high propensity for associated deformities and the low, almost minuscule fertility rate which are non-survival traits the Oddian Syndrome should be considered a freak of nature rather than the next stage of evolution.
<![if !supportFootnotes]><![endif]> Baron Igescu had wished to use the positronic brain to enhance the neurological functioning of one of his fellow Ogs.