Kimota! Captain Marvel meet my fist

When are Marvel comics going to bring the world of Miracleman/ Marvelman into the Marvel U?  Marvelman, which was actually one of the coolest comics that Alan Moore did, and then later Neil Gaiman was acquired by one of the companies that put the title out of business.

Earlier last year Joe Quesada announced that the character of Miracleman was acquired by Marvel Comics, the company now sells t-shits and a poster for Miracleman yet there has been no mention of when they will integrate him into the continuity or whether his original series will be collected in trade.

I am hoping that the series will be collected in trade and one can only hope that they finish of the story Neil Gaiman started over 20 years ago.  If for some reason the character is brought into normal Marvel Continuity I think he could provide some real competition to the Sentry for the alpha male position in Marvel.

The announcement that the rights to the character was finally sold to Marvel came at last summers Sand Diego Comic-Con, which was really huge news. At least it was huge to me.

Most people might not be to familiar with who Miracleman is and why he is important to comic book history, the character has been out of print for quite some time and can only be read through downloaded files from a bittorrent client.

The character was lost in limbo for quite some time with no real person being able to claim any sort of ownership over him. It was for a time believed Alan Moore had ownership over him, that Neil Gaiman had ownership, and even Todd McFarlane was believed to have ownership and went as far as having the character make a minor cameo in a Hellspawn issue. It would later be revealed that original owner Mike Anglo still had the rights.

So who is Miracelman? Well, Miracelman from my understanding started out as a sort of Captain Marvel rip off. I believe that there was a comic book publisher in England that re-printed issues of Captain Marvel, once DC sued Fawcett comics over Captain Marvel’s similarities to Superman Fawcett was forced to quit publication of their character. Once this comic publisher was forced to quit re-printing copies of Captain Marvel the owner ended up creating his own version of Captain Marvel calling him Marvelman, which was later changed to Miracleman.

So everyone knows the story of Captain Marvel, young reporter or whatever Billy Batson meets some wizard who tells him when he shouts the word Shazam he gets the strength of Samson, etc. etc. Marvelman is essentially a reporter named Micky Moran who when he shouts the words Kimota becomes superhuman exactly the same as Captain Marvel.

I know I know the comic sounds a bit lame and doesn’t seem like it would be that important in the world of comics. But it wasn’t its rip-off origin that made the comic such a unique piece of history, it was the transformation of the character at the hands of Alan Moore and then later continued on by Neil Gaiman.

What Alan Moore basically did is have Micky Moran having these strange dreams that seem oddly real to him. A middle aged married photojournalist without any kids Moran was covering some sort of event when a group of terrorists show up. Life in danger Moran has the urge to shout out a word that keeps playing over and over in his mind, “Kimota!” Shouting the word Moran is instantly transformed into Miracleman a hero forgotten by the world he had once saved.

Marvelman now a hero goes to meet up with a member of his former super team Johnny Bates a.k.a. Kid Marvelman. Marvelman discovers that Bates had grown up in his Kid Marvelman body becoming a CEO and overloaded with power Bates wants to be the only person with power. Attempting to kill Marvelman, he is tricked into saying the magic word being transformed back into the boy he had left behind nearly 30 years ago.

Later on in Moore’s run it is revealed that Marvelman was a test subject for stolen alien technology that allowed for Moran and others consciousnesses be transferred to new more powerful bodies. All the memories of Moran’s past were implanted memories by some ex-nazi doctor obsessed with immortality. The story goes on to reveal the identity of who was now going by Miraclewoman, due to legal pressure from Marvel comics to change the name of the series characters. Also Miracleman’s wife gives birth to a nearly omnipotent daughter, and eventually puts Kid Miracleman down for good.

Gaiman later took over on the series focusing more on the aftermath of Miracleman’s and Kid Miracleman’s final battle and the world Miracleman created afterwards. Miracleman played less of a role in the comic once Gaiman took over and was more focused on the people living in the world he created.

Gaiman’s run was never completed for some reason, and the character became trapped in legal limbo for several years.

Part of the reason Miracleman was such an important piece of comics history is mainly because in the comic Moore began to introduce themes that would later show up in his Watchmen comic. Particularly Marvelman’s story parallels those of Dr. Manhattan in Watchmen. Moran is a man transformed into a god just like Dr. Osterman was, and like Osterman (Manhattan) he becomes detached from humanity.

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