normalman/Megaton Man Special #1

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Jim Valentino, under the name Valentino, created the parody comic book normalman in the mid- late-80s. It ran for 12 issues plus an Annual from publishers Aardvark-Vanaheim and Renegade Press. Don Simpson created his parody comic book Megaton Man around the same time and it ran through a variety of series, one shots, and minis from both publisher Kitchen Sink Press and later his own self-publishing house.

In the early-90s Jim Valentino was one of the founders of the publisher Image Comics, along with Marvel Comics hot artists Jim Lee, Todd McFarlane, Marc Silveresti, Rob Liefeld, and Erik Larsen, and producing the super-hero comic Shadowhawk. At the same time Simpson was self-publishing his book Bizarre Heroes which featured many of the characters in the Megaton Man universe.

normalman/Megaton Man teamed their two classic parody characters in a satire of the comic book industry as it stood at the time. It also celebrated independent and creator owned comics, with cameo appearances by numerous characters such as Madman, Groo, Johnny Dynamite, Niel the Horse, Dr. Radium, Bone, Cerebus, Omaha the Cat Dancer, and many more. Valentino and Simpson were joined in creating the book by Larry Marder and Bob Burden, who scripted and wrote the appearances of their characters Mr. Spook (from Tales of Beanworld) and the Flaming Carrot (from the comic of the same name).

The Ellison parody character appears on page 9, jumping up and down shouting: “Imbeciles!! They’re only interested in pretty pictures! — The Illiterate Morons!! When are we going to see a super-hero a sixty-year old can truly believe in?! All they want is fight scenes.” The figure is wearing a t-shirt that reads “Angry Old Fart.” This is one of numerous parody characters appearing in the book–Chris Claremont and Neil Gaiman also appear in the same two-page spread.

Date Of First Appearance
August 1994

Reprinted in The Complete normalman (Image Comics, 2007)

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