Magellan Mythos: Hall of Fame
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Notable Historical Figures
During the first half of the 20th Century a new type of crime fighter arrived on the world scene. Distinguished by their striking costumes, mysterious secret identities and their relentless fight against crime and villainy they often worked outside the boundaries of the law to bring the bad guys down.
Widely referred to as 'super heroes' the majority of these colourful costumed crime fighters had no notable powers other than their self-honed athleticism, intellect and an unwavering sense of justice.
Others gained amazing abilities thru chemical or scientific mean or had the use of advanced technology.
Mostly they operated solo within their own city or area of influence but during World War 2 many heroes banded together to battle the forces of evil threatening freedom in the world.
By the 1950s most of these heroes had retired, seemingly died or vanished. However, this apparent lull was only a prelude to the explosion of a new generation of heroes and heroines in the 1960s!
Considered to be the first known 'super-hero' Victory-Man started life as down on his luck police officer Lance Magellan who had been wounded -shot in the knee -whilst trying to apprehend a bank robber. As if facing the rest of his working life behind a desk wasn't bad enough, his house was partially destroyed by a small meteor that smashed thru the roof and left a sizeable crater in his kitchen. Escaping injury, Lance did, however, receive a high dosage of an alien radiation which not only healed his knee but imbued him with enhanced abilities. Lance found that he had greatly enhanced strength and senses, could leap to great heights and great distances and was now made of 'tougher stuff' - that is, he was almost invulnerable.
Lance chose not to reveal his new found powers to the world, fearing rejection and denouncement from his deeply religious family and community. A fan of wrestling he chose to don a costume to conceal his identity so that he could continue the pretence of the hobbling desk bound cop whilst using the information he gained thru his job to fight crime and injustice under the guise of Victory-Man.
Initially considered a myth and a hoax, Victory-Man's presence was soon felt in the underworld and his fame grew rapidly. Despite the censure of the local police force he quickly became a national American hero.
During the war years he lead a group of costumed fighters for freedom - The Victorious - against the Nazis, significantly denting Hitler's own super soldier war efforts.
Having married Lady Lariat (Helga Lasser) in 1936 he became a father in 1942, his son was named Magnus Magellan. Lance hung up his cape and tights in 1959 - aged 49 - once it had become clear that his arch nemesis, The Evil Weevil, had succeeded in annulling the powers bestowed by the meteor. He died in 1962, aged 52, in a car crash.
Probably the most mysterious figure in the early days of costumed crime fighting, the Black Hood's real identity and final fate still remain unknown.
However his impact on the underworld and crime bosses throughout London remains undisputed as he cut a swathe thru their organisations and operations - frequently leaving the unconscious bodies of thugs tied up in their lairs awaiting the arrival of baffled but grateful police.
Those who saw the Black Hood in action rarely saw much at all - and in the case of law breakers it was little more than a dark blur before oblivion crashed into their jaw.
All agree that he was a tall man with great, but not inhuman, strength and agility, who moved with stealth and who knew how to fight. The black hood which covered his head became his alias as the stunned criminal underworld sought a name for the scourge decimating their ranks.
It is believed he formed an alliance with Victory-Man during the war years and was an unofficial member of The Victorious.
Helga Lasser was a circus performer going by the moniker - Lasso Lass - a young woman with an uncanny ability for "ropin' and tiein' things up"! In her hands anything from rope, wire, cord, even string could become an effective weapon. She found she could disarm crooks with one hand while bundling them all together with the other. At age 21, inspired by stories of Victory-Man she adopted the identity of Lady Lariat and left many bewildered criminals cursing their bad luck - tied to trees or dangling from flag poles - while they waited the arrival of police. Lady Lariat was also able to swing herself to and away from crime hot spots and it was during one such adventure that she met Victory-Man and formed a relationship with him. She married Lance Magellan/Victory-Man in 1936, fought the Nazis alongside him as part of The Victorious during the Second World War until she bore a son - Magnus Magellan - in 1942.
Becoming a mother effectively put paid to her crime and Nazi fighting career - the young Magnus being a handful even before his own powers began to manifest. She died in 1962, aged 51, in a car crash.
Barry Duke was an ex-gangster who lost his family in a mob related hit. An impressive fighter he was able to take out most thugs in single handed combat, usually with a single swipe from one of his trade mark solid steel knuckle dusters that became his namesake. It has been claimed by some of those he faced off against that he could punch bullets out of the air with his knuckle dusters. This may have been the case, as Duke certainly seemed to possess great reflexes and did have plenty of slugs pumped his way by retreating gunmen. However, whatever luck or skill he may have had they were not enough to swipe aside the bullet that took his life during a bust on a gang of weapons dealers in 1957. He died aged 44.
Deng Xuan was able to harness the power of the Red Light during an intense near-death experience. As a child he had been awe-struck by fables of the Light which could only be harnessed by the greatest practitioners of the arcane martial art 'Golden Lotus'. Although he studied and practised the art for many years and became highly accomplished in it, there was never any indication that the Light was more than a myth.
It wasn't until Deng has trapped in a landslide that he was able to tap the potential of the Red Light to save himself and many of his townsfolk.
As the Chinese Lantern, Deng is able to manifest a ball of glowing red energy that can carry him aloft, propel him thru the air, act as a shield against all manner of projectiles and explosives, and also fire bolts of destructive plasma with considerable accuracy.
Having fought in The Victorious during WW2 he remained active until 1988 - aged 74. His attempts to train a successor, a Chinese Lantern 2, were unsuccessful and although Deng is still alive, at age 95 he is quite frail and not totally in control of his mental faculties.
1942-1955; 1969-1972 (Gizmo Woman)
Sally Young was a girl with a talent for creating fully functional gadgets (gizmos) without any understanding of how they actually worked. Attempts by others to replicate her designs invariably resulted in failure. Best known for her explosive homing-yo-yo and her ray-gun she was also able to effect flight through a personal antigravity device and receive radio transmissions through her helmet. Not a skilled fighter she frequently relied on her gadgets to get herself out of trouble. Even so, she was an invaluable asset in the fight against Hitler as part of The Victorious - the super-hero team led by Victory-Man. At age 15, she was certainly one of the youngest super-heroes to see action.
She forged a considerable career for herself as a crime fighter although she was rarely taken seriously and she retired from the game in 1955, aged 28, to focus on raising a family her twin daughters.
A battle against depression and an addiction to painkillers proved the hardest she ever had to fight. In an autobiography she published in 1962 she claimed her inventive skills stemmed from an ability to channel the mind of a futuristic alternative Earth's scientist. She also claimed her daughters were the result of a love-affair with Victory-Man. Neither claim has been proven or disproven.
She attempted a return to the crime-fighting scene in 1969 as Gizmo Woman but this was short-lived and unsuccessful. She retired again in 1972 and at age 82 (2009) still makes a living out of donning her costume for conventions and charity fund-raisers.
Jake Spanner was a biochemist with the dream of turning himself into the world's first invisible man. Numerous attempts proved unsuccessful, but what he didn't realise that the various chemical cocktails he had pumped intravenously pumped into his body had created a special bio-molecular that had an unexpected side-effect. Instead of becoming invisible but he found he was now the world's fastest man - a title he still holds. Able to run at speeds in excess of 5,000 kph, Jake Spanner found a new career fighting crime as the Streaker. Claiming that clothing only slowed him down and/or burst into flames due to air friction, Spanner chose to do his running nude so never had an official costume. A pair of goggles were all he used to cover his identity.
Criminals weren't the only ones to despair of the Streaker's crime fighting career, many religious leaders and politicians declared him obscene. Countless warrants across several continents were issued to arrest the Streaker for indecent exposure - except no one was ever able to catch him to issue them. Uproar at any appearance of the Streaker was enough for most local newspaper to declare "Streaker Run Out of Town".
Despite the controversial nature of his crime fighting suit (or lack thereof), the Streaker still contributed significantly to preventing many murders, robberies and man-made disasters. He preferred to work solo as most other super-heroes - especially the women - found his nudity discomforting. However, he still played a significant role as a member of The Victorious.
The Streaker vanished in 1951 - aged 39 - during an attempt to run around the world in less than a day whilst under the influence of an experimental drug. Various theories abound as to his ultimate fate but none are proven.
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