from World’s Finest #273
Martin Pasko, writer; Joe Staton and Bob Smith, artists
While Plastic Man is continuing to be ignored in the current incarnation of the DC Universe, he’s luckily still getting love from DC Nation – which I didn’t even realize was still going on!
Now being wedged in somewhere with episodes of Teen Titans Go!, DC Nation has kept producing animated shorts that feel more like DC comics than DC Comics, with the latest featuring our favorite pliable policeman.
Or DOES it?
Follow along with the bad guys and see what a master of disguise (and a little criminal paranoia) can do in “Untouchable!”
I spotted this on a high-shelf at Chicago Comics a few days ago, and if I wasn’t traveling I definitely would’ve picked it up!
Of course, all you plasti-fans know this is taken from the very first Plastic Man story (published in Police Comics #1, 1941) and shows the moment Eel O’Brian discovered his new powers. Great guns!
Art by Seth Tucker
based on original art by Jack Cole
panel from DC Super-Stars Giant #10
writer: Bob Rozakis; penciller: Dick Dillin; inker: Frank McLaughlin
panel from Plastic Man #51 (Volume 1)
panel from Plastic Man #18 (Volume 2)
John Albano, writer; Ramona Fradon and Bob Smith, artists
Note: Thanks to my good pal Dan, I’ve finally gotten my hands on a complete run of Plastic Man from the mid-60s/late-70s. It’s an interesting series, not least of all because of the eight-year gap between issues #10 and #11 and the change from swingin’ superhero to a more classic kind of crime fighter (with humor left intact). And did I mention the first 10 issues actually starred Plastic Man, Jr.?
I’ll talk more about that in the future, but for now let me point out some things I noticed about Woozy in the second half of this run:
• he’s clever
• he’s always ready for a fight, and more than willing to mix it up with the bad guys (he even says, more than once, that fighting and taking a punch is what he’s best at)
• more than in any other series, he serves as an equal partner to Plas (and he’s not above dropping a gentle insult now and then)
• he wears a floppier hat that makes him look like the Hawaiian Punch guy
• he’s a lot of fun, and I wish more creators would write him like this
I’m not usually into fan-casting very much — not because I don’t think it’s an interesting exercise, but because I’m usually terrible at it.
Still, the recent news that a Justice League movie is planned to spin out of the in-the-works Batman vs. Superman flick got me thinking: Who could play Plastic Man? Don’t get me wrong — I know there’s no way Plas is going to show up in the JLA movie. But that doesn’t mean I wouldn’t like it if he did.
A lot of people tend to point to David Tennant when trying to cast Plastic Man, but I think that would be a bad move. SETTLE DOWN. Let me tell you why: First of all, I’m not sure he wouldn’t play the role too big. Yeah, Plas is supposed to be a fun character, but there’s the danger of just turning him into a clown, and I think it’d be too easy for Tennant to take that route (Exhibit A: His scenery-chawin’ appearance as Barty Crouch, Jr. in Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire). Secondly … well, let’s be honest, put Tennant in a JLA movie and all anyone’s going to see is the Doctor.
Nope, I’m a big believer in casting relative unknowns in superhero movies (or at least not casting A-list stars), and my choice fits that description, along with a few other criteria. I would cast Jerry Trainor as Plastic Man.
Oh, c’mon, you know — this guy.
Trainor is best known as big brother Spencer on iCarly, the popular live-action show that ran on Nickelodeon for six years. Spencer was a gangly, goofy free-spirit who was nonetheless devoted to responsibly raising his little sister (and who wasn’t above getting into mischief with her and her friends and/or bailing them out of trouble). Trainor’s character was often silly but he knew when to dial it back, and was just as often supportive and in-charge when he needed to take care of business.
Sound like someone we know?
Trainor’s also young, but not too young, and he’s got the right look (you’ve practically just got to slap a pair of goggles on him and you’re ready to go). He could possibly also help bring in a new and loyal fan-base, and there’s nothing wrong with that.
So that’s my choice to play Plastic Man — who’d you like to see in the role?
panel from Plastic Man #16
writer/artist, Kyle Baker
Somewhere in the frozen North, a wily Canadian was cleaning out his garage and saw a chance to turn garbage into cold, hard cash when he uncovered a beat-up copy of Plastic Man #9.
“Beat-up” might be generous. “Plague-ridden” is probably more accurate since this comic’s most defining characteristic is that it’s been gnawed on by rats. But if that’s not a deterrent to you hardcore collectors out there, this copy can still be had on Ebay for the next couple of weeks for the whopping price of $21.60 (rat not included). To be fair to the seller, he does make it very, very clear in his listing that the comic has been, and I quote, “chewed on by a rat.” And also, it’s “impossible to read.” In case you’re wondering, I’ve included a picture of what the cover is supposed to look like for comparison.
If anyone decides to buy this comic, for the love of God let me know.