@amendment50: I get that they want to market the OML-verse nowadays but man, diluting the story's impact just feels like a dirty move.
We are hiring!
As I'm sure you have noticed we haven't been posting as much as we once used to. Truth is a lot of us are busy these days and as such we are now looking for replacements. Some replacements will be temporary but others will be permanent.
We are looking for people who are active on vine, have time to do write ups weekly and expect to still be one vine for the forseeable future.
We got quite a few trailers these last couple of weeks. You might have already seen them but here they are
provided by @emperorthanos-
Writer Brain Vaughan, who's written such comics as Y: The Last Man as well as the ongoing Saga, has signed a deal with Legendary Entertainment to develop past and present comics into either TV or movie format. Does this mean we're getting a Y: The Last Man film, or even a Saga TV series? Who knows? But the possibility is very real thanks to this deal.
Coming in over Twitter, Netflix has announced that a new Ghost In the Shell series is coming in 2020. Called Ghost in the Shell: SAC_2045. It is going to be developed by Kenji Kamiyama (Ghost in the Shell: Stand Alone Complex) and Shinji Aramaki (Appleseed). This series should be pretty good for people who are a fan of sci fi anime, or even those who just want more of Ghost In the Shell. No word on if this is going to be an ongoing series, or a film though. No release date is announced at this time, either
Provided and written by blackestnight93/@vertigo-
Battle threads of the week
For this week's DC vs. Marvel thread, we have two street levelers, Lady Shiva and Taskmaster. This is an older thread but it got bumped recently and received a fair number of posts. And since both are popular street levelers on battle forum with top tier fighting skills, I decided to include it. Unsurprisingly, it is incredibly controversial topic with multiple and completely different views on the entire topic. Some would say Shiva stomps and others would say Tony stomps. Some would say it is a close fight but would still favor over the other.
Apparently in this year's CW Show crossover, we were introduced to this Cinematic TV Show version of DC Comics character Amazo, who is JLA-busting Android created by Professor Ivo, and copied the powers and skills of all Justice League members. This version of Amazo is not as versatile due to lack of JLA in CW verse, but he still possesses powers of Superman, Supergirl and Flash and Oliver Queen's fighting skills. And due to being a villain and having a low amounts of screen time, he does not job like infamous Barry Allen here. And here, he will run the gauntlet of Mainstream Marvel Comics characters (Live Action versus Comics is common trait on this site now), with the restriction of copying more powers. This thread has low number of posts so technically it should not be included, but given that Amazo is now a part of CW, I decided to include it regardless.
It is not a complete Daily Debater issue without including the most heated types of battles on this site, MCU vs. DCEU. This thread was created about a year and a week ago, and it seems very similar and I hope it is not one of those threads that I included way back in a day that got bumped again and stands out now. But I feel like I've been saying that a lot recently, and given that this fight is strictly hand to hand, with no weapons, I know it is at least different from other MCU Hela vs. DCEU Wonder Woman threads I know I included in the past. It got bumped yesterday and over the course of less than a day, it got filled with even more arguments and around 50 posts (which is not surprising given what the topic is).
I don't normally include DBZ threads. They are often either locked or are rarely seen. And they often include battles with Manga characters I am not familiar with, and I avoid adding those due to my ignorance. But given that I am actually familiar with Naruto, I decided to include this thread here. Although it is more of a Naruto thread because as you can see in the title, Composite Naruto character runs the gauntlet of DBZ characters. But for the sake of causing confusion, this is not Composite version of Naruto Uzumaki. But every character from the entire "Naruto" Manga/Anime. And unlike most gauntlets, it is composed of 12 rounds instead of 5 or 10 like usual. The thread was posted a day ago but it already reached it's second page.
Provided and written by @krleavenger
CaVs of the Week
H'el represented by @emperorthanos- takes on the Mighty Crusaders represented by @beatboks1. A teambuster vs team cav, which is something you see more and more these days. H'el is very popular character for tourneys and cavs due to his vast array of abilities and he has faced a powerful team before. Here he comes up against a comicbook that most will unfamiliar with, they are the JLA equivalent of the MLJ universe. So if you are curious about learning on some older comic book heros be sure to check this out.
There probably isn't a bigger in manga than Bleach vs Naruto. Charaters from the two sereis are often pitted against each other and it doesn't get any bigger that Ichigo and Naruto, the protagonists of their respective shows. @hittheassasin is representing Composite Ichigo against EOS Naruto who is represented by @darthjhawk. Most would consider this to be an uphill battle for Ichigo considering how strong Naruto gets at the end however with access to all his forms, this might be closer than originally thought.
Another cav involving two big Shonen Jump Protagonists with Luffy from One Piece taking on Yusuke from Yu Yu Hakusho. The former is being debated by @defiant_will while the latter by @kingguinness. Two extremely popular manga, however only Luffy is seen often in cavs likely due to his manga still going on. Yusuke on the other hand isn't seen too often in debates. So if you want to learn about another big shonen character from past then look know further as he takes one of the big protagonists of the present shonen jump.
A teambuster team cav between @wollfmyth and @vsw. The former using a duo of Darkseid and Thanos against the latter's duo of Despero and Amazo. 4 powerful teambusters on offer here, all of whom most of you should be familiar with. Thanos and Darkseid are often pitted against each other but this time around we get to see how they would do as team. They are facing two of Justice Leagues greatest enemies.
Provided and written by @emperorthanos-
Respect threads of the Week:
Namor (written by @the_red_devil)
This thread is on one of Marvels oldest and well known characters: Namor the sub mariner. Seems like something that should have been made a long time ago, but TRD finally gave the ruler of Atlantis his due. Highlighting his physical stats, as well as his hydrokinesis, this thread gives a good idea as to what Namor is capable of. Good use of spoiler blocks in the thread. Hopefull we see more from you in content. Nice work.
Immortal Hulk (written by @thedailybagel)
This weeks respect thread, while not entirely new, is certiantly exciting. Written by Hulk aficionado @thedailybagel this thread focuses on the Jade Giants newest incarnation, where's he's a lot meaner, and almost as powerful as his Green Scar incarnation (or so I've seen). Focusing on Hulks strengths, and all around physicals (as any Hulk thread would), this thread also delves into some of his more esoteric abilities, and even some of his weakness. Everyone who wants to learn about this Hulk, or any longtime Hulk fan should seriously check this out. TDB regularly updates this thread (as I write this, he updated it about 4 hours ago) so you can guarantee everything is kept current. Excellent formatting, issue citations are present. Excellent job TDB, keep up the good work.
Provided and written by blackestnight93/@vertigo-
New writer for the TDD
@owie has officially joined the daily debater so please give him a warm welcome and a nice round of virtual applause. He will be taking my place, doing write ups for the CaVs of the week from now on. I on the other hand will be helping with the Humans of the Battle Forums sections. So if you wish to be interviewed let me know.
We also got some new trailers. Specifically the trailer to the new spider-man movie
On top of that we got a new season of the Punisher
Marvel will be revisiting one of the more darker periods in Spider-Man's history when it launches a new Spider-Man series that revisits the time when Peter was bonded to the venom symbiote. Written by Peter David, and drawn by Greg Land, this mini series will give us more adventures of Peter Parker at the time when he was bonded with the alien from space. The series is set to launch sometime in April this week.
Disney will be expanded its Star Wars universe just a tiny bit more this April with the launch of a new Star Wars series focusing on a group of TIE fighter pilots. Written by Jody Houser, who's also written Star Wars Thrawn, the series focuses on a group of pilots from the Empire known as Shadow Wing.
Provided and written by blackestnight93/@vertigo-
Battle threads of the week
This is a pretty old thread. Six+ years old, but it got bumped recently and I find the topic to be pretty interesting so I decided to include it. It is not typical versus battle thread but it is part of the Battle Forum. As you can see, the question is, what match-up/fight between certain two (or more) characters was seen in a comic book or would appear in a comic and isn't/wouldn't be introduced as a mismatch, even tho we on Vine think it is a mismatch regardless? It's an interesting topic and it shows how us debaters have completely different mindset when it comes to fictional battles compared to the writers.
MCU 1v1 battle thread created by @amendment50. He created a bunch of these threads and a lot of them were recently bumped, but I picked this one because Season 2 of the Punisher just came out and Season 3 of Daredevil is still fresh so, I think this one has the most potential, especially because it was created a year ago, before new Seasons. The thread is only 2 pages long but the OP put a lot of effort into this thread, introducing multiple rounds with different scenarios. I recommend you to check it out.
A 4 Way Battle between God Tier Naruto characters, all with Otsutsuki powers. Momoshiki, Toneri, Madara and Obito. Main villain of the first real Boruto arc, main villain of Naruto movie in between Naruto and Boruto, and two main villains of the original series. All of them are Composite and are Morals Off/Bloodlusted. This thread was created 6 months ago and it got bumped few days ago. Not a lot of arguments were presented so far but the thread reached 3 pages mark.
I don't normally include Star Wars threads. Either because I don't see them that often or I am not knowledgeable enough to talk about them. However I got into Star Wars recently and I feel like I can introduce those threads without sounding ignorant, and since this one is pretty active relatively speaking, I figured why not include it? Even tho a lot of people think it is a huge mismatch yet votes on poll say otherwise. But I will stay neutral and just provide info. It's a battle between Darth Caedus and Obi-Wan Kenobi. Former being known as Jacen Solo, a Jedi Knight and son of Han and Leia who became a Sith Lord, now part of Legends continuity. His opponent is a Jedi infamous for his meme worthy quotes, who became fan's favorite after the Clone Wars cartoon, which is oddly enough a version of Obi-Wan being used on this thread.
Provided and written by @krleavenger
CaVs and Tournaments of the Week
Have you ever wondered how many CaVs have a new entry each week? It turns out that over the past 7 days there have been 22 CaVs or tourneys that posted a new post for one of the characters, or started up. Pretty awesome evidence for the vitality of debates here on CV. I’ll be focusing on debates where each side has a least one post up for their characters, but there are several out there that look great which I’m looking forward to featuring in future editions.
I love that this exists. Guenhwyvar, the “pet” companion of Drizzt Do’Urden, is a fun, ferocious, furry Forgotten Realms character with a lot of battle experience and phaseshifting powers to boot. Red Sonja is one of the toughest street-levelers around, having beaten men and monsters with maximum mayhem. They’re a great match-up that you can easily see happening in a crossover (hopefully the comics companies are listening). And they’re repped by two fantastic debaters. This is getting close to completion.
Harry Dresden, Lichdrow Dyrr, and Vash the Stampede (Floopay) vs Doomslayer, Master Chief, Prophet (fused with Alc), and Adam Jensen (Killerwasp).
Honestly I didn’t know a hell of a lot about most of these characters until reading it, but these two classic debaters (hopefully Floopay doesn’t get too big a head from having two debates featured here!) are doing a nice job presenting a bunch of characters, which is always hard. I like the range of characters from all kinds of universes. The range of abilities and gear should make for a great battle. This one is just getting started.
This is a match-up I’d never think to put together (which is the nice thing about tournaments), but should be interesting. Midnighter is used a lot, and for good reason, given how hard he is to beat. Mera, on the other hand, has been around a long time but doesn’t get used as much, so it’s good to see her get some exposure. Her powers and stats make her a challenge for anyone. They’ve just finished up and are open for votes—who wins, water powers or precog teleporting?
This CAV is kind of a crazy idea, but it is definitely an entertaining read that has been getting a lot of comments. It’s always good to see someone push a character to its limits! Thor has had some great feats in Ragnarok and Infinity War, but is that enough to beat the powerful villains of both of those movies at once?
Provided and written by @owie
Respect Thread of the Week: Brainwave Jr (Written by @thetruebarryallen)
This weeks respect thread is on the son of one of DC's more older villains, namely Brainwave Jr, who's father is the infamous Brainwave. Going over his bio and giving a rundown on his mental capabilities, all of which are complete with issue citations, this thread does a phenomenal job of bringing to light a lesser known villain in the DC universe. What's more interesting with Brainwave Jr is that he was at one point a hero, but eventually changed sides. I seriously recommend everyone who's a fan of older comics, or looking for someone new to read to check this out. Well done TTBA. Keep up the good work
Provided and written by blackestnight93/@vertigo-
Character of the Week: The Molecule Man (written by @owie)
I wrote a enormous piece on the Molecule Man, but I realized it was way too long for the Daily Debater. So I wrote a (slightly) shorter summary of it, which you see here. But, if you want even more depth on this subject, please check out the original text, which I'll post soon after this comes out.
So: Who is the Molecule Man?
This is a particularly complex question in the case of Owen Reece, the Molecule Man, who has been around ever since Fantastic Four #20. In fact, Reece has been continually changed and retconned since his second-ever appearance in Marvel Two in One #1, which I’ll detail below. I would actually say that the core of his character is, in many ways, change itself.
For instance, how can all of these people, with such radically different physiognomies and personalities, be the Molecule Man?
To try to show exactly how complicated these changes are, I’ve made a chart that shows his most important historical moments, and ties it in to big evolutions in his powers, his various origin stories, and his personality. You can right-click on it to see a more high-resolution version.
I’ll go through all these changes and inconsistencies and more below, but the short version is that throughout his career, Owen Reece has been one of the most powerful beings in the Marvel Universe, able to extensively control matter and energy in various combinations. He has gone from a loser who was mad at the world to someone who found peace and self-acceptance in love. Then he lost all his self-worth, went totally bananas, and was largely disrespected by the writers until he was once again redeemed in the 2015 Secret Wars storyline, after which he (temporarily) found peace once more in his universe-creating adventures with the Future Foundation. And now he's dead (maybe).
I'm going to do kind of a weird thing. My first instinct was to write out his history from beginning to end. But instead, I'm going to explain how he has evolved (and devolved) along multiple axes throughout that history. Hopefully you'll be able to pick up the core of who he is, among all the inconsistencies, along the way.
Different Personalities and Bodies
Reece’s personality and body has changed a lot—A LOT—over the years. He started as a kind of angry loser with a normal physical build in Fantastic Four 20. Then starting in his very next appearance in Marvel Two-in-One 1, when his "Son" took over, and then through the wand period where his spirit was stuck in a wand and he kept possessing people (described more under Origins, below), he was a psychotic guy who was happy to kill, really aggressive and bullish, and hugely muscled. He took over the body of a little girl, a lizard, a black homeless man, and Reed Richards, among others. Avengers 215-216 was a real turning point, as Jim Shooter described in Marvel Fanfare 9. Shooter felt that the classic Molecule Man's personality had been lost (in fact, he had really only appeared that way in Fantastic Four 20 at that point) and he wanted to get back to that original character. Shooter made him an angry, goofy loser, a real dweeb, the kind of guy who gets a bloody nose after getting punched by Donald Blake and creepily hits on Tigra with ultra-ickiness. Shooter also took away the muscles, making him kind of pot-bellied. The other huge change was that Tigra convinced him that he needed to go into therapy, leading him away from being a villain.
This led into Secret Wars I, where he was no longer angry, even if he was still a dork, and he had a bit more of a heroic build. But more importantly, he found love with Volcana, and Doom further healed his mind. These two events brought him peace and eventually, in Secret Wars II, turned him into a well-adjusted guywho was even capable of heroic self-sacrifice. Now he had a trim build.
Then later he merged with the Beyonder into the Cosmic Cube. When he came back from the Cube, he was secretive and manipulative again, and lost his love with Volcana. This is where I personally get annoyed. It was perfectly reasonable to retcon his power level downwards. It’s hard to have a comics universe where a guy could literally stop every villain with a thought. But there was no reason to make the guy lose all the happiness and self-respect he had spent such a long time working towards.
Reece continued to be an angry loser for some time, and was really made fun of. He started having multiple personality issues, and a “dark side” that starting coming out and being villainous. This dark side, interestingly, physically looked a lot like the Son from Marvel Two-in-One 1. But overall, he was a loser. In one issue, he was literally picking his nose, and in another shown as a dwarf with an enormous nose and baggy clothes that he was too small to fit. Not exactly the same guy who was willing to nobly sacrifice himself to save the Earth in Secret Wars II.
When he showed up in Dark Avengers after a long lull, his body and face reverted to his Secret Wars II-era look, but he had even more mental problems—he had multiple voices in his head, and had severe delusionsabout reality. And he was cruel again. He was banished by the Sentry, and when he finally came back, he started working with Dr. Doom. He was now even more loony and babbling, crazy in a wacky sense, but not in a psychotic, aggressive sense. He continued to be semi-lucid and semi-loony during the 2015 Secret Wars, always looking for something to eat, and floating upside-down. Post 2015 Secret Wars, he was still pretty whack-a-doodle in his relations with Galactus and the Maker; but on the other hand he was calm, at peace with himself, and respected as a good friend by the time of his apparent death in Fantastic Four 2. I should note that since he theoretically has selves in every dimension he and Franklin created, not all of which were destroyed in that issue, there should still be plenty of Molecule Men out there in the multiverse. Given that, and the fact that the Future Foundation is going on a quest to find and resurrect him, it's unlikely that we've heard the last of Owen Reece.
Let's look at the different kinds of craziness he's shown in the past couple decades. At first, it was explained as his evil side coming out, the villainous self he'd been from before Secret Wars I. Here, his craziness was psychosis, and a literal split personality: he'd change back and forth from one physical form to another as his personality changed. Then he lost the psychosis, and instead acted delusional and schizophrenic. All of this was basically explained as coming from his post-Volcana unhappiness and self-hatred.
During the Incursion storyline and afterwards, there were a few new explanations for his insanity. First it was explained that he got more mentally unstable the closer he got to the “time bomb explosion” point in his life. Then it was explained that he was going crazy because Doom was killing all his extra-dimensional selves(also explained here: each death makes him lose a memory). When he comes to talk to Doom, he says he has been "returned here. All of us"--that is, this version of the Molecule Man is mentally complete, from a future era with no dead Molecule Men. The implication is, he has a shared consciousness with all his selves, and he is only completely sane when all of his selves are alive and together. But then later it was explained that as he made more universes with Franklin, he split off the many versions of himself that he had absorbed in the fight with the Beyonders, one for each new universe; when they slowly started splitting off, it made him more sane. In this argument, too many Reeces make him insane, the opposite of the previous explanation.
Post-2015 Secret Wars, when Reece talked with Galactus in Ultimates, he was crazy. But, the version that was simultaneously voyaging with the Future Foundation was fine. One possible explanation for this difference may be that the Ultimates version could have been one of the split-off selves, which were possibly not as sane as the core self; or maybe the Ultimates version was him in a not-yet-sane era, where he had not yet split off enough other selves. Whereas the version in Fantastic Four 2 was him five years later, after he had split off many of those selves and had become more sane.
So basically Reece has gone from a normal-bodied angry geek to a hugely muscled angry guy to a pot-bellied sheepish insane geek to a well-adjusted trim geek to an angry and goofy trim geek to a geek with a split personality and body (ranging from dwarfish to hugely muscled) to a trim wacky geek to a well-adjusted trim geek.
Changes in Origin
The origin of Reece’s powers has also changed over the years. Originally, he got them from a pure accident in a nuclear plant, a tale of a machine gone wrong.
Next there was a hugely confusing era where he was sent to another dimension and died of old age, but not before creating a Son. This Son may have been an actual independent being, or may have been a psychically-split-off version of the original. This Son got powers by intentionally recreating Reece’s original accident, but in such a way that he could control both organic and inorganic molecules. Then the Son died, and somebody’s spirit—either the Son’s or the original’s, or both—got stuck in his wand, and then started possessing people. So at this point, the Molecule Man either got his powers by accident or intentionally, depending on whether you believe the spirit going around possessing people was the original Reece or the Son. See my upcoming blog post, which I'll post a link for later, for a way more extensive explanation of the Son. But one way or another, the Molecule Man still got his powers from the atomic machine itself.
Then in Secret Wars II, we learn that his original accident opened a pinhole to the Beyonder’s universe, which led to the Beyonder becoming sentient. But, there was no more connection than that: Reece still got his powers from the machine.
Then, we later learned that the pinhole didn’t just let the Beyonder watch Reece get his powers. The Beyonder was actually a dimension of energy that the race of Beyonders used to charge up Cosmic Cubes, so when the machine opened the pinhole, some of the energy from the Beyonders’ Cosmic Cube universe went into Reece, and the rest stayed where it was and developed sentience and became the Beyonder. So now there was an explicit connection between their powers and origin: both of their powers came directly from the Cosmic Cube universe.
Then Reece and the Beyonder merged into a Cube. Reece eventually left the Cube to come back to Earth, but Reece was now powerless. But, he had left a “bit” of his power in Volcana, and now reclaimed it.
Soon after, Reece was said by Kubik (a sentient Cube) to have greater powers than himself or the Beyonder, due to his “human potential.” Given that Reece was always said to have less power than the Beyonder, and now he only had a "bit" of that original power, something else had to be up with this. One possibility is that his powers came from a mix of the Cosmic Cube powers and his innate human psychic potential. (Marvel has been theorized at various times that all humans have vast psychic potential, thus explaining for instance how the Supreme Intelligence was able to give Rick Jones powers.)
In TheIlluminati, the Beyonder was said to be a mutant Inhuman. The question is, if the Beyonder got his power from being a mutant Inhuman, and not from a Cosmic Cube universe, then where did Reece get his power from? Luckily this alternate Beyonder origin never caught on, so we never had to worry about this much.
More recently, we learned that the race of Beyonders gave powers to every Reece in every dimension. They were all fated to explode at a certain age, destroying their universe. (Also explained here.) (See my upcoming longer post for various problems with this idea.) So now he still got his power from the race of Beyonders, but it was no longer an accident, it was due to an intentional plan on the part of the Beyonders.
Finally, he fought the Beyonders along with his other-dimensional selves. After this battle, he seemed to absorb at least some of his other selves’ power and some of the Beyonders’ powers, thus creating a new origin for his powers.
To sum up: his powers accidentally came from a machine. Then he, as his Son, intentionally recreated that machine to give himself the powers again. Then maybe the Son died and the original took over, or maybe not, so it's hard to say which version of his origin carries on at this point. Then it turned out that this accident led to the Beyonder becoming sentient. Then it was changed so his powers actually came from the universe of the Beyonders. Then he lost his powers and got them back after storing them in Volcana. Then he was theorized to have more power than just what was possible from the pure Cosmic Cube power itself. Then the accident at the power plant turned out to not be an accident but a plan by the Beyonders. Then he got all new levels of power by absorbing it from his other selves and the Beyonders.
Changes in What of Things He Could Do with His Powers
Everybody knows that the Molecule Man could originally only control inorganic molecules. But then, after Doom enlightened him and removed his self-imposed mental blocks which stemmed from his doubt and self-hate in Secret Wars I, he was finally able to control inorganic and organic molecules, and control energy, for the first time.
Well, no. It’s true that Reece himself, as well as his comics’ narration, and the handbooks, often explicitly supported that narrative during that time.
But in terms of feats, pre-Secret Wars I Molecule Man used his power to affect organic molecules, and energy, quite a few times.
Here are some examples, all from before Secret Wars I:
• He transforms the bodies of beings that he psychically possesses, for instance by morphing this normal lizard into a humanoid lizard-man
• He makes a mirror out of water and wood (and in this same scan, changes a little girl into an adult woman)
• He teleports between dimensions, and from place to place within the 616 universe.
• He keeps possessing people’s bodies, as he does here with Reed Richards (which involves psychic manipulation or at the very least control of the organic molecules of the brain)
So, regardless of the oft-repeated narrative that he could not affect organic molecules or energy before Secret Wars I, he could in fact regularly do so, often in the same issues where it explicitly said he couldn’t.
How could this be? There are a few possibilities.
1) Many of those examples are from the “wand period,” which might have featured the Son of the Molecule Man instead of the original Molecule Man (this is a huge debate, see my upcoming post for the details). The Son was expressly said to not have the same organic/inorganic limitations as Reece. He was definitely the Son for at least one issue (Marvel Two-in-One 1). For a few issues after that, where he continued to control organic molecules on a regular basis, it is arguable whether he is the Son or the original (or if the Son and the original are the same person, which is how I see it). But, some of the examples of him controlling organic molecules and energy come before and after the Son and Wand period, so it can’t just be a matter of the Son anyway: Reece controlled electricity, the wood water tower, and the organic-attracting magnets in his first appearance; he had to create the Son in the first place (physically and psychically); and in Avengers 215-16 (after the wand period) Reece was able to make a copy of his body, and could recreate the Power Cosmic energy of the Silver Surfer’s board, and the Asgardian magic of Mjolnir.
2) Since the reason he couldn’t affect organic molecules was only self-imposed subconscious blocks, perhaps if he was acting more out of impulse, and not planning things rationally, he could go past the blocks and affect organic molecules. Basically as long as he didn’t think about it, it might not matter. There are some problems with this explanation (for instance, he got psychic feedback when unknowingly trying to control the Fantastic Four’s molecules in his first appearance), but it holds up in most cases.
3) Maybe Reece got over his self-imposed blocks during the wand period, when he was more of a maniacal killer and less of a dweeby loser, so he consciously no longer minded affecting organics; and when he started getting nerdy again, he regained his blocks.
4) Sometimes the writers try to explain it away by calling electricity “electric molecules,” or saying that maybe the wand had his body’s plan hardwired in it. But this stuff usually doesn’t make a lot of sense.
5) Sometimes the explanation for why he can’t control organic molecules isn’t that he has subconscious blocks, but that they (and other complex things like plumbing) are too complicated. This doesn’t make a lot of sense though, considering that sometimes he could control organic molecules, and other times he would create extremely complex inorganic creations.
Plus, sometimes it was definitely a writer’s mistake.
Which of these works the best? I tend to favor a mix. Basically I think the Son persona (which I think was a splinter of Reece's own spirit) was in control for a while, and he explicitly didn’t have the same blocks as Reece. Then Reece's original personality slowly emerged again and regained the blocks, but sometimes broke past them when he was acting in a more impulsive manner.
It should be noted that for a while after he came back from the Cosmic Cube, he was again unable to affect organic molecules because they were too complicated. However, this time he regained his ability to affect organic molecules simply through practice.
Changes in His Power Level
His power levels have varied quite a bit. He has always been powerful; the Watcher said he was a danger to the entire universe in his first appearance. But he tended to act on a much less than cosmic scale, rarely affecting anything beyond the size of a city block at best. (Although this seemed to be more due to the limits of his imagination than the limits of his power.) There were several times his powers met their limits: for instance, he was unable to control the Impossible Man’s molecules due to Impy’s ability to control his own molecules better than Reece could.
When he fought the Beyonder, he was able to shoot a blast that the Beyonder said could have destroyed several billion dimensions. The mere fact that he was able to temporarily hold off the Beyonder, who at the time was said to have millions of times the power of the rest of the multiverse, was impressive.
With the Cosmic Cube retcon, his power level went down considerably. He was said to have less than half the power of a Cosmic Cube (here and here as well as here), and Kubik said that even a full sentient Cube is well below the power of a Celestial and other such beings.
Later, Reece lost his power except for a “bit” of it that he left in Marsha. So he had, by definition, a small portion of his original power, which was itself less than half of the Beyonder’s power.
However, just by practicing, Reece vastly increased his power level (here and here). Reece then fought and significantly overpowered the Beyonder (he “transacted on power levels unimaginable to [the Beyonder]”), seemingly contradicting the old “less than half” description. This was explained by saying that it was because Reece was a human, with human potential, rather than being an abstract (here and here). This doesn’t make a lot of sense, but as I argued above, it could be that they were going for the idea that Reece’s powers derived from the innate human psychic potential that has been seen in characters like Rick Jones and Franklin Richards. This would fit with the notion that he could increase his power level simply by practice, as mutants are often able to do (whereas practice with a Cosmic Cube might change one’s skill at using the power, but not the extent of it).
But then, somehow, Reece’s power levels went down so low that he was able to be captured and held in the Raft prison. Apparently this was due to his weak mental state, which either blocked his powers or rendered him unable to consciously use them to their full extent.
When he fought Sentry in Dark Avengers, the Sentry had better molecular control than Reece, again probably due to Reece’s mental state, which began to be a real limiter on his power usage.
During the Incursions “time bomb” version of Reece, his power level was unclear—but it was enough to destroy a universe and presumably all the abstracts in it, as per the Beyonders’ plan, which is definitely more than a normal Cosmic Cube’s power (or the Sentry’s power). It later took many of him combined to destroy the race of Beyonders. Since the entire race of Celestials, and other abstracts like the Tribunal, were unable to defeat the Beyonders, this seems to show that his army of Molecule Men was more powerful together than any universe’s slate of abstracts.
When he absorbed the power of the Beyonders and his other-dimensional selves, he was able to power the recreation of the multiverse. It is hard to decide whether this is more or less powerful than his Secret Wars II-era self. Potentially, in 2015 Secret Wars and after, he not only had his own original power, but the absorbed power of his many other selves, plus the absorbed power of the race of Beyonders. Each self could destroy a universe. But, is this collective Molecule Man power, plus whatever he got from the Beyonders, more than the power necessary to destroy several billion dimensions? In his time with the Future Foundation, they spent 5 years creating new universes, but they seemed to exist in the low thousands, not the “several billions.” In any case, he became more powerful than he had been recently. In Ultimates, for instance, Galactus clearly thought Reece was well above him, which would not have been the case when Reece was at Cube-level powers. Reece used pawns like Galactus and the Maker (here and here) to work against the First Firmament and his Dark Celestials, but whether he did that for amusement's sake or necessity isn't clear.
Just recently, Reece was quickly killed by an abstract called the Griever, who represents Entropy. However, Reed Richards said that was because Reece was similar to an elemental force of the universe, and so he was precisely in her wheelhouse of things to destroy. For instance, when she fought other heroes later, her blasts didn’t even kill streetlevelers.
Reece’s personality has changed a lot over the years, from angry geek to goofy geek to self-content geek to insane geek and back around through all those iterations.
His body has gone from typical to heavily-muscled to pot-bellied to trim.
The origin of his powers has ranged from a pure accident causing a machine to transform him; to an intentional recreation of that machine; to the machine opening up a hole to another universe, which sent its power into him; to losing his power and then retraining himself in it; to having some badly explained human potential that was more than just his Cosmic Cube power; to it turning out that the original accident was no longer an accident but a plan by the Beyonders; to absorbing the powers of the Beyonders and all his fellow selves.
His powers could originally only affect were inorganic molecules; except when he could also arbitrarily affect organic molecules and energy. Then he could affect all matter and all energy. Then he could only affect organic molecules again, until he worked at it a bit and he could just affect everything again. Arguably, since his powers are Cosmic Cube related, he ought to have reality warping powers like all other sentient Cube-beings, rather than matter manipulation powers. To some degree this is supported by the fact that he can scry on abstracts, dimensionally teleport, etc., but he has continued to describe his powers as being matter-manipulation-based even when doing non-matter-manipulation things, even in the modern era.
The extent of his powers have always potentially been universal, but in practice were largely very limited until he became the second-most powerful being in the multiverse; then it turned out that he had only a portion of the power of a “minor omnipotent”; after which he increased that power to greater levels through practice; and then seemed to lose it again due to his mental state; and then gained it back again until he was able to absorb many dimensions-worth of other Molecule Men’s powers plus the Beyonders (who are definitely “major omnipotents”).
And that is Owen Reece in a nutshell: continual change, with the main consistencies being his core geekiness, his desire to be accepted, and his ability to manipulate matter.
@thetruebarryallen: Hope you enjoy it. That Brainwave Jr. RT is great, I love that era.
I realized that I didn't call out the people whose CAVs I featured in the article, so I'll do that here--see the official post above for the actual CAV descriptions @floopay@wyldsong@killerwasp@maestromage@geekryan@xzone@kevd4wg
ET means humans of the battle forums in the sense of interviews with debaters.
While not exactly comic related, fans of films like Ponyo or Spirited Away will be amazed to know that Miyazaki will be making two new films alongside his son. Reportadly, one of the films is set to be made by Miyazaki himself, and the other will be made by his son, Gorō.
Provided and written by blackestnight93/@vertigo-
Battles of the week
Silver Surfer and the Sentry, former being called Marvel's strongest Herald tier character (well he is the strongest Herald), and the latter being called Marvel's Strongest Superman, were rivals in Comic Vine for years. There were multiple CaVs discussing this topic. In multiple forms at that, given that there are 3 versions of the Sentry. Regular Golden one, Void, the Evil version, and reborn Death Seed version, whom most people agree is the most powerful of the three. And that version is Silver Surfer's opponent in this thread, which is pretty old relatively speaking, but it is full of arguments and comments and it got bumped recently. This thread will probably be even more fun to debate on given that both characters are morals off.
For this week's Live Action thread, I decided to include Luke Cage vs. Captain America. This thread was created 3 years ago, and both characters got tons of new feats since then. While this thread was bumped multiple times, either when someone was interested to comment or when both characters received an update, Season 2 for Luke Cage came out very recently, and he got a lot of new feats. The topic was discussed a month ago and the thread was dead for few weeks until it got bumped again a day ago, and given that it is on it's whopping 22 page, I figured I might as well include it.
Adding more Star Wars threads, I present to you Revan vs. Vader. Two characters who a lot of fans regard as their absolute favorites, some calling the former the face of Expanded Universe (or at least one of it's most popular aspects) and the latter being the face of the actual franchise. But who would win in a fight between these who legendary figures? Both are human and took the role of both Jedi and the Sith. According to the OP, both are at their peak, although I am not sure if Pre-Suit Vader counts. While this thread did not receive a lot of posts, it is on it's second page and the last post was less than a day ago. And it seems like arguments were keep coming. It also seems to be close according to the audience at least given that poll shows exactly equal amount of votes for both characters (at least now, during the time I'm typing this).
Super introduced Dragon Ball characters to completely different level of power, not only with their own powers increasing but them facing new more powerful opponents, with Jiren being the final boss, most of whom agree is more powerful than Beerus, who is pretty much a benchmark for top tier characters in Dragon Ball power wise (or at least was). But Jiren only cut loose during the final battle, and even after that, he became more powerful, surpassing his limits himself. But Super was not the end for DB. Recently a new movie came out, which is a sequel and not a side story like previous movies. It brings back two very popular characters from original movies, Broly, the Legendary Super Saiyan, and Gogeta, a byproduct of Goku and Vegeta preforming Fusion Dance, this time in Super Saiyan Blue form. Now I did not watch the movie so I don't know how powerful these characters are, but I am told Gogeta was stronger than Broly. But can he defeat Jiren? I guess that depends on how strong Broly was.
Provided and written by @krleavenger
CaVs of the Week
These two enthusiastic debaters (@kingguinness@streak619) have put together the beginnings of some great info for people (like me) who don't know squat about anime or manga. Lots of interesting feats and cool scans by some clearly powerful characters that have been nicely put in context. I'm looking forward to the back and forth as this gets into its second round of posts.
This is a really fun themed debate--some minor but skilled and powerful characters from the MCU, mostly from Agents of SHIELD. They're all under-used and deserve respect as worthy hand to hand fighters. I'm sorry that Giyera can't use his TK, since he's got some real flair with it, but of course it would unbalance this particular fight. It's an uphill battle for anyone to go one-on-two, but it will be interesting to see if @anthp2000 will be able to make the case--or if @sublineboxes him in.
I want to feature this both because it's nice to give some props to one relative newcomer in @aqualion0 and one brand-new Viner (unless he's got an alt I don't know about) in @invisible_boy03, but also because we've got here a classic battle between two of Marvel's pre-eminent women with powers that should make for a great match. This could be a fun battle with great potential.
As @wyldsong put it, this puts his one hax character up against multiple hax characters from @oceanmaster. There's all kinds of ways this battle could go, and I always enjoy learning about someone I don't know anything about, especially when the characters are explained well. Oceanmaster has an unusual group of characters and I'm curious to see how he uses their particular mix of abilities against Lady Death's range of powers. Sersi is pretty formidable on their own, so it will be interesting to see what Lady Death does against her. And I'm pretty sure I've heard a rumor or two that Storm may also be pretty tough? We'll see how she's handled in a seasoned debater's hands.
Provided and written by @owie
Respect Thread of the week: Bloodshot (made by @thetruebarryallen)
This weeks respect thread is on Valiant Entertainments Bloodshot. Doing a solid rundown of Bloodshots own physical abilities, complete with scans, this thead does double duty in also going over what various abilities Bloodshots nanites grant him. It's the nanites that really differ him from just a generic soldier esque character and turns him into a force that can give street levelers a run for their money for sure. Anyone who's a fan of Valiant should definitely give this a read if you haven't already. Show some appreciation by leaving a comment if you feel like it.
Provided and written by blackestnight93/@vertigo-
I was expecting a Bloodshot respect thread from K4tzm or IlikeSwords, not TTBA but the man knows how to make a damn good respect thread for sure. Another brilliant issue from all involved!
Thank you, folks.
We got a couple of new trailers in these last two weeks thanks to the Superbowl.
Battles of the Week
It's been a while since we had one of those classic teambuster fights. I've been posting so many of those, I tried to avoid them. But since this got bumped recently, and the match up is pretty iconic despite the fact that the latter is not such a popular character, I present to you Thanos vs. Mangog. Two of the strongest and most absurdly durable powerhouses in Marvel (or at least one of the best ones). It's pretty much common knowledge that Thanos is more versatile but what if he has to rely only on his strength and durability? The first round is hand to hand only, so if some of you consider this one sided, round 1 might be more interest to discuss. Of course, Mangog could probably win regardless.
For this week's life action thread, we have Malcom Merlyn/Dark Archer, the main villain of Season 1 of Arrow and supporting character/villain in other Arrow Seasons, and even Season 2 of Legends of Tomorrow. One of more lasting characters of the CW Verse, Merlyn has a solid quantity of feats of skill and stats. But is he capable of beating seemingly superhuman Bane from the final installment of Nolan's Dark Knight trilogy? Especially because it is limited to hand to hand only, which limits Merlyn since he is mostly proficient with arrows/bow and swords? This thread was full of discussion 4 years ago but it was not bumped a single time until very very recently.
I don't know if I just never payed attention before or if new Star Wars threads just keep popping up these days, but there are definitely a lot of arguments on these forums. And this is the fight of Sith Apprentices of movie era. Specifically Clone Wars era. The main and overlasting apprentice, Anakin Skywalker/Darth Vader, confirmed most powerful apprentice at his strongest (during Knightfall protocol), said to rival his master Sidious himself, against the previous two apprentices the "Soon to be Emperor" had. Count Dooku and Darth Maul, both proficient in their own way. One on one most would agree this is one sided, but can the two of them together beat their successor? ROTS Dooku and SoD Maul are versions.
Another Star Wars thread with Anakin yet again. Except this time it is ROTS Anakin but before he turned into the Sith. So at peak of his Jedi Knight years. Not his absolute strongest but definitely up there. And here he faces a Jedi with Dark Side abilities who will soon become his secret apprentice as Darth Vader, Galen Marek, the original Starkiller, from popular Force Unleashed game. Both of these characters are incredibly powerful in the Force, and both used Dark Side abilities despite the fact that they are Jedi, like Force Choke with Anakin or Force Lightning with Galen Marek. While Marek already defeated Anakin as Darth Vader, Skywalker as a Jedi is a completely different type of fighter in literally every way, basically a totally different character power wise. So can Galen defeated a Jedi version of his former master, or will this version of Skywalker be more effective against Marek?
Sasuke already fought Lee in Part 1, and got absolutely dominated. Then Lee had a fight in Chunin Exams Preliminaries round, which a lot of people consider to be the absolute best fight in Naruto and one of the best fights in Manga overall. But Sasuke received a massive upgrade after training with Kakashi, learning Chidori, and using Sharingan to copy Lee's natural speed and fighting style. While Lee is still stronger and probably faster, Sasuke does have Chidori and better perception and reflexes, which also allows him to use his speed way more effectively than Lee. But can Lee (before Gaara crippled him) defeat Sasuke who has so many advantages over him? And if not in-character, maybe morals off like in round 2? Maybe open up third-fourth gate?
Provided and written by @krleavenger
CaVs and Tourneys
This debate between @deathhero61 and @thewatcherking started a couple months ago and is closing in on the end. The readers have been glued to this debate to see how it will end up, with two well-matched characters and debaters. Elric is from Fullmetal Alchemist, and Deku is from My Hero Academia—two classic heavyweights of anime that even I know about! Alchemy vs Quirks, which will win out?
This debate between @the_magister and @blackspidey2099 matches up two of Marvel and DC's live action top fighters. Oliver Queen is well-known not only for his incredible accuracy and trick arrows, but also for his impressive close-quarter skills, his ability to tank damage, and his amazing agility. Grant Ward probably is seen as the underdog in this debate, since the SHIELD show tends to have second-tier or at least less-famous opponents than the MCU movie characters, unlike Ollie who has gone up against heavyweights like Deathstroke and Ra’s al Ghul. But don’t go making judgements yet, because Grant and the other SHIELD characters have been racking up the feats too, and this battle takes away all the trick arrows. Which character can win it all in hand to hand? Check it out.
This heavyweight debate has been going on for a while and has been worth the wait. Two major mainstream headliners with a host of powers take on two other big team-busters who are just a little less known and quirkier. This would be a massive battle that I think we’d all like to see, and @wollfmyth209 and @vsw have been playing it out for all of us. There are all kinds of complexities to teams with powers this wide-ranging, and histories this long, and the debaters are bringing it all to the table. Reality manipulation, telepathy, strength, all kinds of energy blasts, and then power-copying as the cherry on top. Learn about several characters who have kicked more hero butt than most, all in one place.
A three-way tournament entry that has a great range of characters (@chimeroid: Takion, Aquaman, and Trauma; @beatboks1: Rogue, Dark Nebula, and Blue Superman; @kevd4wg: Ego, Ultimate Iron Man, and MCU Dr. Strange) from all over the place, with all kinds of powers from mid tier to cosmic. Personally I just love the chance to see Ego the Living Planet really see his due! There’s a few characters that I haven’t heard of before, and some that I know and didn’t know much about, so it’s great to have these seasoned debaters go through and show off their abilities. For a three-way debate with three characters each, and with magic and power copying once again in the mix, you know this isn’t a simple debate, but it’s a lot of fun to see how they all interact.
Provided and written by @owie
Respect Thread of the week: Mysterio (Berkhart) by @diarrhearegatta
Pay respect to the bubble head! Well, not exactly everyone's most well known Mysterio, this respect thread in case showcases on of Quentin Becks successors, who was directly trained by Beck himself. While touching on some striking and durability, something you wouldn't expect from Mysterio, this thread puts its main focus towards Berkhart's illusions and technological prowess, which is definitely more Mysterio's bread and butter. Lots of scans, issue citations on point. This thread is a great way to showcase a less known character, who donned the moniker of one of Spider-Man's more famous rogues.
Provided and written by @vertigo-
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