Marvel Boy Annotations V1.0
Written by Mario Di Giacomo (email@example.com) with the assistance of the Barbelith Underground (http://www.barbelith.com) and Eduardo Blake (firstname.lastname@example.org).
Issue #1: "Hello Cruel World"
Summary: Alien castaway meets billionaire psychopath. The alien wins.
The character in the center is the never-named Marvel Boy, Noh-Varr. On the left side are Captain Glory and Merree. On the right two more crewmembers, one of whom is probably named Star Splendor (my personal guess is the woman with flame for hair). The gold-colored hand in the background belongs to Doctor Midas, the villain of the piece.
First appearances of Rogue Fantastic (the character with gray temples), Merree (the redhead), and Star Splendor. The name for Rogue comes from the Marvel Boy Genesis Edition, which was included in Punisher #3. It is possible, as it is later revealed that Noh-Varr's last name is Marvel, that Merree's full name is Merree Marvel, possibly a reference to Mary Marvel, the Golden Age Fawcett character.
Note also that Rogue and Merree's uniforms are green and white. These are the original uniform colors of the Kree Captain Marvel. The eyes on Rogue's shirt seem reminiscent of something, but I am not entirely sure what (Doctor Strange, perhaps?).
First appearance of the dimension schooner Marvel. The term "epiphany" refers to a sudden realization of an essential truth, which is fitting as it is later revealed that the engines run on belief. The small eye symbol on the upper right is apparently a symbol of the Egyptian god Horus, although it more resembles the Masonic compass-and-square.
Panel 1: Notice the helmet Rogue Fantastic is wearing, another connection to the Kree Captain Marvel.
Panel 2: First appearance of Noh-Varr and Plex. Plex, as is revealed later, is a dimensionally-alternate clone of the Kree
Panel #3: The Cortex is the highest level of the brain. A suitable name for a control center.
Panel #4: First appearance of Captain Glory.
Panel #3: First appearance Doctor Midas (in shadow).
Panel #4: Our first clear view of the Captain. Note that while he shares the green-and-white coloration of most of the crew's uniforms, the design is that of the second uniform of the Kree Captain Marvel, which was dark blue where Glory has white, and red where he has green.
Panel #2: Kirby Machines refer to the late Jack Kirby, who was fond of cosmic machinery. The reference to Doc Wonder and the Unfinished Universe remains unexplored.
The title "Hello Cruel World" is a reversal of the phrase "Goodbye, cruel world" occasionally used in suicide notes in fiction (and possibly fact). Noh-Varr's pose is a modification of the common crucifixion pose used in Christian iconography. The foot position, especially, confirms this. The crossed beams behind him resemble the "Counter-X" logo, but this may be sheer coincidence.
Panel #1: Our first clear view of Doctor Midas. His armor is clearly based on the earliest Iron Man suits, which is explained
in Iron Man 2000, where it is revealed that he acquired the brain of Professor Yinsen (the POW who helped design the first armor). Behind him in his collection are (from the top) Toomazooma (the large face), an unidentified Kirby-esque monster, a Mindless One. An unknown alien, a Badoon, and a Skrull).
Panel #3: Grover's Mill, New Jersey is where the Martians were purported to have landed in the Halloween 1938 broadcast of "War of The Worlds" by Orson Welles.
Panel #4: The fact that Noh-Varr's saliva passes through the Bubble so easily will be important later.
Panel #2: By this statement, Midas reveals he is _not_ Mordecai Midas, the old Iron Man villain, who was apparently born with his name.
Panel #2: First appearance, probably of Midas's daughter Oubliette. The fact that she seems comfortable unmasked makes
the identification uncertain.
Panel #8: Noh-Varr is recognizably Kree, although enhanced.
Panel #10: These terms refer, in various ways, to the idea that his saliva contains nanotechnology.
Rather than break down the action by panel, I will just note that Noh-Varr's saliva appears to be capable of some kind of mind-control, and he can grow his thumbnails at will.
Apparently, his nails can explode as well, with some force.
Panel #1: Notice the sign. Noh-Varr is running on the ceiling (made clear in the next panel.)
Panel #2: There was a Kree (called the Pursuer) with cockroach DNA in the first Inhumans series, specifically issue #11. He
resembled one as well, however.
Panel #1: Eighty-six mph is a fairly respectable running speed.
Panel #5: The distinctive green speech bubble indicates this is
the Plex speaking.
Panel #1: Three of the four members of the Fantastic Four are recognizable in the crowd. Susan Storm is, appropriately, invisible, although probably not Invisible.
Panel #1: I'm not sure if Silicone-era is a typo or not.
Panel #3: Note that Noh-Varr's temper is considered somewhat of an aberration. This may explain his later behavior somewhat.
Issue #2: "Boy Vs. World"
Summary: Noh-Varr makes a point, while SHIELD and the Bannerman attempt to curb his creativity.
Panel #1: Apparently, the Plex's subminds occasionally disagree. Not that Noh-Varr's weapon grows out of his wristband.
Panel #2: Limbo, in the Marvel Universe, is one of a number of planes associated with time-travel. Therefore, it's likely that the Limbo Lounge is a room where time passes slower than it does in the outside world.
Panel #1: First appearance of the Omphalos orbiter. While the term means "navel", it's more likely, based on the Omphalos of Delphi, where the ancient Oracle was said to reside.
Panel #2: This is Timothy Aloysius Dugan, commonly called "Dum Dum". A longtime comrade of Nicholas Fury, his title of Special Director makes him the #2 man in the SHIELD organization.
The Bannermen are clearly based on Captain America, although rather than the American flag, their iconography is based on the UN symbol(partly visible in panel #3). The references to adamantium are a tie-in to the X-Man Wolverine, and the gamma radiation refers to the Hulk.
Now, some have taken the 4th word balloon to mean that Captain America is dead, but a strict reading of the text reveals that they are merely referring to the time since WWII.
Panel #4: The bombing of Hamburg was in WWII.
Panel #5: The dog-walking line reminds me, at least, of the Robert Heinlein short story "We Also Walk Dogs", about a company devoted to solving problems.
Panel #1: This couple may be Jack Frost and Lord Fanny of Grant Morrison's other title INVISIBLES. Based on the color, it would appear that jack, the young man on the bed, is under the Plex's influence.
Panel #2: "Nobody Beats the Wiz" is a popular electronics store in New York City.
Panel #3: The movie marquee is for the MATRIX, a recent film that shares many of the same themes as the INVISIBLES. This may or may not be a coincidence.
Panel #1: The Bannermen shields bear the UN emblem.
Panel #3: Pink Pantheon is probably a reference to the movie and cartoon series "The Pink Panther". As a theft is involved, the reference is probably to the film, which is about the theft of the Pink Panther diamond. The Matter Fax is probably a
Panel #4-5: The gamma radiation reference is now fully explained. The fact that the skeleton changes without affecting the adamantium lacing could be problematic, but is not a major issue.
We can clearly see the letters F, Y, O, and U. The two word phrase they partially spell is left as an exercise to the reader.
Panel #1: Noh-Varr is literally eating garbage.
Panel #2: *Deep breath* The following are seen on Noh-Varr's screens: Mesopotamian carving, circuit board, starship (possibly
Battlestar Galactica or Star Trek), reptilian fireman, couple kissing, a kabuki dancer, a cat with a Nazi/Pink Floyd emblem, a man and a green-skinned woman, a shark, a shuttle orbiter, a samurai, a blue woman with feather-hair, the Mole man, the Arc de Triomphe in Paris, The Fantastic Four, unknown person in a blue hat, an ape, mecha from Ghost in the Shell, Teletubbies, Batman, a character who a cross between Mister Miracle and the Vision, a woman, an insect, the Hulk (possibly), the Pyramids, a starscape, a monkey, Itchy and Scratchy, Star Wars, a soda commercial, and Rorschach and Nite Owl from WATCHMEN.
Issue #3: "Digital Koncentration Kamp One"
Summary: Noh-Varr deals with an escapee from the wreck of the Marvel, a
dangerous idea given form.
Cover: The words BRANDHEX, DIGITAL, KONCETRATION, YOUWANT, and YOUNEED are all hidden in the background.
Panel #4: The Concept Dungeons are full of interesting tidbits, like a technological cube (Borg? Hellraiser?), a floating face, a large book which may be "Idealus the Fictional Man." Given Grant's fondness for "fiction suits", it's an intriguing name.
Panel #1: A brainstorm is a telepathic infodump.
Panel #2: Virgin is a record label, Fox is a multinational media
Note that while Noh-Varr fires one grenade, each replicates until there are four (at least).
Panel #1: This is the musician from page #1, now the Voice of Hexus, Prime Servant of the Living Corporation. Note that he is also called Mr. Greepy, apparently the Voice's designation.
Panel #1: Quantum encryption actually exists, although in theory only. The fact that Plex can break them so quickly speaks well for his intelligence.
Using corporate methods to defeat a corporate entity is a stroke of genius on Noh-Varr's part.
Panel #2: A cosmic bullet is apparently a burst of pure cosmic radiation.
Panel #4: Searching for fuel, Noh-Varr looks for garbage, true to his roach DNA.
Panel #2: A gold car arrives.
Panel #4: Midas apparently has influence over the police.
Our first clear view of Oubliette. Wow. Note that she is carrying a gold colored revolver.
Issue #4: "Exterminatrix"
Summary: Noh-Varr wins a pyrrhic victory over the forces of Midas.
Note that Oubliette is now driving a gold (and heavily armed) motorcycle. An exterminatrix is a female exterminator. Who else would you send after a cockroach?
Oubliette's weapon resembles the "cosmic bullet" from last issue. Knowing her father's obsession with cosmic radiation, this is not unsurprising. The fact that Noh-Varr is fast enough to dodge it is, however.
Panel #4: The use of vibranium soles to climb walls was first suggested in BLACK PANTHER #1, also a Marvel Knights title.
Panel #8: The bald fellow resembles Dhalsim, a Street Fighter character. However, "Say Gournga" is a catchphrase of the Hare Krishnas, and means "Be Happy".
Panel #2: Repulsor rays are standard Iron Man tech. Clearly Yinsen knew how to make them.
Note that Midas's skin resembles the Thing's.
Issue #5: "Zero Zero: Year of Love"
Summary: Midas and Noh-Varr, Round 3. This time, however, Noh-Varr has an ally. One very close to Midas.
Panel #2: A "Quantum Fax" may not be the same as a "Matter Fax" (see issue #3).
There is no known reference to the alien font seen on these pages.
Panel #3: Noh-Varr's uniform repairs itself in this panel.
Panel #4: Noh-Varr grows a different weapon out of his wrist.
Panel #2: Plex introduces himself officially. Piezoplasm means, roughly "pressure tissue". I'm not sure how that applies.
Panel #1: "-optera" is a common combining form for insect species. For example "lepidoptera" are butterflies. So insect helicopters are helicoptera.
Panel #2: Based on size, design, and the idea of mass murder "epic genocide" as fuel, it's highly probably that the Astro-Gods are beings similar (if not identical) to Galactus. This motivation is new, however.
Panel #1: These may be a version of the Avengers, the Watchmen, or possibly both. Note the insect-like vessel.
Panel #2: These are evil versions of the Marvel's crew.
Panel #3: These are alternate versions of the Wildstorm Comics characters "The Authority".
Panel #4: These are Poppupians, better known as the Impossible Man and his family.
Panel #6: All Oubliette has is a simple scar. Some tales indicate that, at least initially, the only disfigurement Doctor Doom suffered after the accident (that was part of his origin) was a similar scar.
This is the Mindless One from Midas's collection. Fittingly, it has no words in it's "thought balloon".
Issue #6 "Mindless: The End."
Summary: Everyone wins, everyone loses.
Panel #1: Terrigen is a Kree-designed formula that induces superhuman abilities in Inhumans (and possibly humans).
Panel #2: Another take on the Captain Marvel costumes. The woman has a headdress similar to Merree's, while the man has Rogue's helmet from issue #1.
Panel #6: Apparently, the Plex has _everyone_ in his memory, including criminals.
Now we see Midas's face clearly for the first time, a slightly smoother version of the Thing's.
Panel #1: The idea of the Fantastic Four as elementals is not new. The breakdown is as follows.
Fire: The Human Touch.
Earth: The Thing.
Water: Mr. Fantastic (for his malleable properties).
Air: The Invisible Woman (as she is transparent).
Note, however, that instead of water, Midas uses thought, and mass instead of earth.
Panel #3: This electronic telepathy is new, however.
Panel #3: "Cosmic Man" is using the Invisible Woman's force-field here, albeit with more malice than she usually uses. Note that the wound he received on the previous page has already healed.
Oubliette uses the head of the Mindless One to erase her father from reality.
But not to destroy him. He may very well be back.
Panel #5: Zen fascism is a difficult concept to define. Zen is giving up all desires, while fascism is an authoritarian form of government. The combination could possibly be defined as "We know what's best for you, don't think about it".
Panel #1: Oubliette just blew up Disney World. The dome is from EPCOT, and the Magic Kingdom castle is visible in the background.
Panel #4: Based on President Clinton's remarks, she apparently isn't fond of Donald Duck.
Panel #3: Although Noh-Varr's costume still seems to be damaged, there is no way of knowing whether his various enhancements have been disabled. In fact, there's no proof that SHIELD even knows what they are, since the only people who have seen them are Midas personnel.
Panel #4: 2:001 has a dual meaning. The year 2001, and also Volume #2, Issue #1.