Oh, Crusher Creel, Crusher Creel. What's to be made of you? And no, that's not a joke, sort of. I find myself very fond of this perennial Marvel Comics villain-type, this bullet-headed goof known as The Absorbing Man. For those that don't know, and bless you, and why are you reading this blog, and anyway -- for those of you that don't know, this fellow is called The Absorbing Man because he can become what he touches, by absorbing (aha!) the object's properties and then transforming into said item. He likes to walk around as pictured above, sans shirt (aka, "The Haspiel", circa 1990's-2004 or so, I'd have to check on that with El Dino), prison-issue pants (or a disco slacks fail, not sure which), a pair of plain old shoes and...um...oh, yeah, a wrecking ball. Which is one of the reasons I gravitate towards this ruffian, because he carries a goddamned wrecking ball around with him. Mostly so's he can tap the wrecking ball and become a human wrecking ball, entirely made of steel. Or at least his epidermis is steel, I dunno what happens to sweetum's internals and guts and all that when he goes for the ball, or a brick, or a fluffy kitty. And I don't want to know, nobody should give a rat's ass about stuff like that, especially because if you make enough of a fanboy stink (insert joke here) some Marvel nitwit will write a story explaining it and that's a large part of what fucked superhero comics up in the first place.
I also like that he somehow manages to always find the same pair of pants when he breaks out of prison or recombines after yet another inglorious and idiotic defeat at the hands of (insert Marvel superhero or superhero team here). That's a real talent. That and liberating wrecking balls in whatever town you recombine your particulars in. Nice one, Crusher Creel, thumbs up. Don't know why you can't go to Sears and get a goddamned shirt, but I'm here to praise you man, not harp on you. So, yeah, Crusher Creel, aka, The Absorbing Man (I mention this again in honor of Jim Shooter's imbecilic script for the first Secret Wars series, which, iirc, contains the line, "I, Crusher Creel, The Absorbing Man --" as a means to introduce the villain to the teeming masses of fanboys and men who knew the character's goddamn height and weight because they bought the Marvel Universe Handbook issue which featured him. That would be the "A" issue, by the way, also featuring Arnim Zola, who I hope to blather about someday in my old age). Where was I?
Right about...here. So, okay, I don't actually know this guy's origin, shame on me, I hear you saying. And I hang my head in shame, shame, shame, shame on me. Sorry to let you down here. Can't tell you who he first fought (Thor --? Millie the Model--? John Verpooten --?), what issue he first appeared in, if he has a name other than "Crusher", if he buys his pants in bulk and mails them to friends and family all over the country in case he has to recombine his particulars out of state, if his head always looked like that, if he had a toy wrecking ball as a child -- I don't know. I don't even know if he's a 60's villain or a 70's villain, but he always seemed to be around when I was a kid, and he was always one of the meaner bastards in the Marvel Universe. I mean, unhappy, bitter, angry, violent, in effect, the kind of guy who would call himself Crusher Creel and have a wrecking ball for a pal.
I do recall he's been defeated in myriad gimmicky ways, tricked into touching cardboard and folded up (at least I hope he was folded up, I would have folded him up, it would have been funny if he was folded up and slid into a paper envelope and put away somewhere, the envelope marked "Contents - One (1) Absorbing Man. Warning -- Do Not Open. If Accidentally Opened, Do Not Let Him Absorb Anything! Handle With Paper Gloves Only!"), he accidentally touched glass and fell down and broke, he fell or jumped into water and was all watery and nobody knew what the hell to do and they weren't sure if he was dead or a watery Absorbing Man in the ocean and Hawkeye started wondering about whether or not The Absorbing Man's insides turned into steel when he touched his wrecking ball.
I also can't remember exactly how his powers worked, could he avoid absorbing if he gave the situation a little thought, or was he a human paper towel that had to pick up whatever he touched? Seems that way from the earlier stories ("Crap! I momentarily forgot I was fighting The Avengers and picked my nose! Alack and alas, I am shapeless snot, to be picked up by SHIELD and dumped into a super-cylinder prison they had that just happened to be able to keep me in stasis so I don't touch anything." NOTE: This did not actually occur in a Marvel Comic, I was just wishing on a star that passed my window). Seems to me a stupid power, if you can't eat anything without physically turning into your McGriddle or whatever. If you put on gloves, then you're glove stuff. Huh. I could go back and read a bunch of Absorbing Man comics, but I don't think I have any, other than the ones Dean Haspiel and I did a few years back, the ones that were released to the sound of chirping crickets. I put him in there because he's a crazy-ass character and has a neat visual. And he carries a wrecking ball. Day-am!
There's another Marvel villain guy what carries a wrecking ball, a member of The Wrecking Crew, he's called Wrecking Ball or Power Ball or Something- Ball, I don't remember. The Wrecking Crew is a gang of bad guys run by a guy who would be a great partner for Creel -- he's called The Wrecker (Get it? The Wrecker? Wrecking Crew? Hey, it gets better, The Wrecking Crew all carry construction worker tools! It's really kinda cool and awesome if you think about it and then stop thinking about it). The Wrecker is another badass with a lousy attitude, an ugly face, a weird outfit, and an iconic weapon, in this case a Magic Crowbar (I say thee YES!). Anyway, these two Heroclix figures have a lot in common and should team up, if they haven't already. I trust someone will edumicate me on this crucial point of U.S. History (meaning, please feel free tom inform me of any past exploits these two fictitious characters may have had together, in a less tender and caring manner of speaking than most would use). I like the guys that carry an iconic, cool weapon, it's kind of like those martial arts flicks where there's a tournament and everyone brings their crazy cutlery. Scimitars, light-reflecting shield with razor edge, flying guillotine (HOLY YES!). I dig that a lot.
Wrapping Up: I found this drawing while clearing up the office last night, and so here you go. The Absorbing Man. Another in a series of whatever this is a series of. I'd write more, and write more clearly, and perhaps tie everything into my opening sentence like a real writer of essays and crap does, but I'm late for dinner and this is stupid enough as it is.
Good evening, True Believers, wherever you are.