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Dark Horse Day Series: Why The Mask’s Magic Is Possession

 

DARK HORSE DAY

The Mask (1991) #1. Dark Horse Comics.

IN RELIGIOUS WARFARE

INTRO

In 1994, The Mask movie became a pop sensation and propelled Jim Carrey into super-stardom. Really, it perhaps defined the decade in movies and showed Hollywood at its best.

With a cocktail of gags, fun, romance and PG-13 violence the movie wowed audiences worldwide. Indeed, worldwide, we all dreamed of donning the fateful Mask and gaining super powers and the instant cool factor!

Though the movie was certainly successful it clearly presented the comic villain as a hero or anti-hero. In fact, it even led to the successful The Mask animated series.

However, it is clear that the Mask is an artifact that amplifies its wearer’s own penchant for violence and destruction. In our first series article, we ask: Is The Mask #possessed?


Flashback FM



#HERO OR #VILLAIN?

Across media, the Mask’s portrayals vary from anti-hero to villain. Popularly, the Mask movie portrayed the character in a more familiar light, as an anti-hero.

In the film, Stanley Ipkiss is the first Mask: a disgruntled employee, bullied and romantic, Stanley stumbles upon an ancient mask, wears it and becomes the Mask.

For the most part, he wants lots of money, have fun and win the heart of his impossible love, the girlfriend of Coco Bongo gangster named Tina.

However, the comics presented the character as a villain who despite having a girlfriend, is bullied by mobsters.

When he finds the mask, he puts it on and becomes the Mask: bloodlusted, he causes mayhem, deaths and destruction.

So our series should help us answer: Is the Mask a #villain or a #hero? Let’s look at comics and film.

WHAT PEOPLE ARE SAYING

OUR POLL

So far, the Twitter audience has not given any votes.

Let’s look at four elements of The Mask and how the artifact may actually make him #possessed.

 

VISIT THE SUPERHERO DAY PAGE

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IS THE MASK #POSSESSED?

#POSSESSED: BLOODLUST (COMICS)

Notoriously, in Mayhem (1989) #1, one of the central effects of the Mask is to increase its wearer’s bloodlust. When Stanley dons the Mask the first time, he cracks his first gag: “But First…” After some mishaps, he ends up at the biker gang that attacked him earlier. In search of payback, he completely murders the whole gang, leaving their whole shop in flames. In many cases, the possessed display Peak Human to superhuman strength. At the end, he leaves laughing maniacally.

Likewise, in The Mask Returns (1993) #3, we learn the origin story of the Mask. Originally, the Mask was a shamanic artifact that was part of cult rituals. In fact, it fed on death and often increased its wearer’s bloodlust. Indeed, it needed the death of the wearer for the ritual to continue. In the comic, when Katherine puts on the Mask she kills Stanley Ipkiss, her boyfriend. Definitely, the Mask makes its wearers #possessed. Indeed, the bloodlust and the superhuman strength indicate possession.

#CRIMINAL: MAYHEM (FILM)

In the film, the Mask is more often a comedian and a flirt. In fact, he rarely kills and many of his violent outbursts are jokes. At the end, he kills only Dorian the main antagonist in order to save Tina.

At the same time, his penchant for destruction and mayhem causes him the attention of the police. Certainly, the big dance scene with the police force is a highlight of the movie. Definitely, Stanley Ipkiss may be #possessed and not a #criminal.

#POSSESSED: MAGIC (FILM)

Perhaps, the most controversial aspect. Normally, the #possessed exhibit superhuman strength and arcane knowledge. In addition, they may be visited by supernatural or paranormal phenomena. In the movie, it is revealed that the Mask was created by the Asgardian god Loki in order to spread chaos on Earth. On multiple occasions, the Mask uses magic or supernatural power.

For example, he induces mass hypnosis by making an entire police force dance on the streets. Also, he creates a siphon in the pond at the Coco Bongo by painting on the tree where Tina is chained. Other powers are his super speed, and his super strength. At the same time, this is not typical of the #possessed and actually reflects magic or supernatural power. Definitely, the Mask is a magician or sorcerer.

#CRIMINAL: GUNS (COMICS)

In the comics, the Mask frequently uses guns. In fact, his bloodlust and his magic cause him to seek revenge and kill people. In the first appearance, the Mask uses guns to kill the biker gang that bullied him.

Certainly, the use of guns is not necessarily criminal. However, here, it is for the purpose of committing crimes. Definitely, the Mask is also a #criminal.

 

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THE MASK IS A #MAGICIAN

Across media, the Mask is certainly #possessed. In fact, his superhuman strength and his reliance on the artifact indicate a form of shamanic possession.

At the same time, his use of magic reveal he is also a magician. Definitely, the power of summoning objects is arcane or sorcery. Moreover, the question remains about whether the Mask possesses Stanley.

In Behind ‘The Mask,’ Kyle McGovern looks at the origins behind the pop movie. Originally, the Mask was a metaphor for human impulses and how it amplifies its aggression.

“You see a guy who’s downtrodden, he’s got issues, he feels like the world has kicked him a bunch,” says comic book artist Doug Mahnke, who worked on Mayhem and several other miniseries featuring the Mask. “All of a sudden he has this chance to get away with a bunch of —-.”

Definitely, we are closer to the answer that the fact he may actually be a #villain, and not an #anti-hero.

DARK HORSE DAY SERIES: WHY THE MASK IS A #VILLAIN. JUNE 2ND.


LINKS

Behind ‘The Mask’ in The Ringer.
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Battles Of The Week: Shazam vs Grail (Hero vs Villain)

 

BATTLES OF THE WEEK

Celebrating Horror-Con to entertain yourself about The Most Powerful Hero in the DC Universe? To #collectabattle, click on Justice League: The Darkseid War (DC Essential Edition) to buy on Amazon. Visit our product review to find why the comic is the best event of the New 52.

OUR REVIEW RATING SCORE:


























Rating: 5 out of 5.

More holidays or Superhero Day? Visit our Special Occasions.

Writers and Artists

Geoff Johns and Kevin Maguire.

SYNOPSIS FOR “Darkseid War, Chapter One: God vs. Man”

The Justice League is under attack by a mysterious enemy. Strangely, she seems to know the Leaguers’ strengths and weaknesses.

In order to save Cyborg, Shazam engages Grail in battle.

IN ALIEN INVASIONS

EXCITED FOR THE DCEU AT COMIC-CON? BUY THIS NEW 52 COMIC!
Justice League: Darkseid War (2015). DC Comics.

Enter the contestants. On the left side is Shazam, the World’s Mightiest Mortal and on the right side is Grail, the Daughter of Darkseid.

Let’s look at the stats.

SHAZAM – PRIME EARTH

Super Strength: Stellar 58%
Super Speed: Sonic 58%
Durability: City 25%
Energy Projection: City 25%
Fighting Skills: Expert Combatant 42%
Intelligence: Field Experience 25%

WEAKNESSES

  • Inexperience.
  • Vocal reliance.

GRAIL – PRIME EARTH

Super Strength: Stellar 58%
Super Speed: Supersonic 67%
Durability: Galaxy 75%
Energy Projection: Infinite 100%
Fighting Skills: Cosmic 92%
Intelligence: Genius 42%

PARAPHERNALIA

  • Father box.
  • Scythe.

VISIT THE DC POWER LEVELS PAGE

THE FIGHT

In order to save Cyborg, Shazam must fight Grail to the death.

The battle to decide who is the demigod!


DAMAGE SCALE

DAMAGE POINTS

The fight starts out with Shazam’s lightning charged attack.

SHAZAM ENERGY PROJECTION ATTACK: 6 DAMAGE PTS.

On the final page, Shazam throw Grail into a truck. But Grail recovers and stabs him in the stomach.

SHAZAM BLUNT FORCE + CONCUSSION ATTACKS: 1 DAMAGE PT + 3 DAMAGE PTS = 4 DAMAGE PTS.
GRAIL BLUNT FORCE ATTACK: 1 DAMAGE PT.

TOTAL


SHAZAM’S NEGATIVE DAMAGE:

Toggle the Toggle Arrow below to view the calculations.

-1 DAMAGE PTS.

Power of A Lightning Bolt = (300*10^6 V)(30000 A) = 9*10^12 W = 2142.85714286 Ton of TNT.
-(1 DAMAGE PTS * 9*10^12 J * 1 Ton of TNT)/(4.2*10^9 J) = -2142.85714286 PTS * Ton of TNT.
Shazam’s Durability = (-2142.85714286
PTS * Tons of TNT)/(2142.85714286 Tons of TNT) = -1 PTS.
Durability = 3 – 1 = 2 PTS = METAHUMAN.


DURABILITY: METAHUMAN

Durability: Metahuman 17%

GRAIL’S NEGATIVE DAMAGE:

Toggle the Toggle Arrow below to view the calculations.

-13 DAMAGE PTS.

Energy To Open A Wormhole = 1.2364969*10^37 J = 2.9440402*10^27
Ton of TNT.
-(13 DAMAGE PTS * 1.75728*10^8 J * 1 Ton of TNT)/(4.2*10^9 J) = -0.54392 ​PTS * Ton of TNT.
Grail’s Durability = (-0.54392
PTS * Tons of TNT)/(2.9440402*10^27 Tons of TNT) = -1.8475291*10^-28 PTS.
Durability = 9 – 1.8475291*10^-28 = 9 PTS = GALAXY.


DURABILITY: GALAXY

Durability: Galaxy 75%

WINNER: GRAIL WINS BY NEAR DEATH.

For more information on Damage Scale, visit the Power Level Wiki page.

 

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CAPTAIN MARVEL IN COMICS

CAPTAIN MARVEL'S FIRST APPEARANCE

In All-New Collectors’ Edition (1978) Vol 1 C-58, Superman faces Captain Marvel (Shazam) for the first time in a comic book rumble!

Neat, huh?

CAPTAIN MARVEL RUMBLES WITH SUPERMAN FOR THE FIRST TIME
In All-New Collectors’ Edition (1978) Vol 1 C-58, Superman faces Captain Marvel (Shazam) for the first time in a comic book rumble! Photo/DC Comics. AP Photo/DC Comics

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    Battles Of The Week: Superman vs Black Adam (Hero vs Villain)

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NEXT BATTLE OF THE WEEK: GIANT MAN VS ABSORBING MAN. APRIL 19TH.

DID YOU LIKE THE BATTLE OF THE WEEK? PLEASE RATE THE ARTICLE OR SHARE ON REDDIT


Justice League: The Darkseid War (Collected) in DC Database.
Shazam (Billy Batson) in DC Database.
Grail (Prime Earth) in DC Database.
All-New Collectors’ Edition Vol 1 C-58 in DC Database.
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Under-Appreciated Heroes/Villains: #WeStandWithRyanChoi And The Terrifics Against The Demon Sleroku

 

UNDER-APPRECIATED HEROES/VILLAINS

Writer(s)

Gene Luen Yang


Penciler(s)

Sergio Davila


Colorist(s)

Protobunker


Cover

Dan Mora


Publisher

DC Comics


Publication Date

July, 2020

IN RELIGIOUS WARFARE

#WESTANDWITHRYANCHOI AND THE TERRIFICS

In The Terrifics (2020) #27, The Terrifics and T-Council rescue civilians from the Underworld demon Sleroku. Importantly, #WeStandWithRyanChoi and The Terrifics against the demon Sleroku. Namely, The Terrifics have Mr. Terrific, Metamorpho, Phantom Girl and Plastic Man. Also, T-Council have Atom (Ryan Choi), Blue Beetle (Ted Kord), Man-Bat, Shay Veritas, Silas Stone, Tesla Strong and Tom Strong.

Previously, Simon Stagg helped Sleroku abduct civilians to the Underworld. In the issue, we learn Sleroku became aware of the Overworld, when the surface was digging underground. After eating civilians, Sleroku gained eyes and his victims’ memories. But those were not enough. The demon wanted more. In the issue, Simon Stagg reveals he helped the demon because it promised to cure his cancer.

The Terrifics. DC Comics.

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FOR ATOM: HE SAVED THE CIVILIANS FROM SLEROKU

In Gateway City, the T-Council has arrived in time to help the Terrifics. During the battle with Sleroku’s demons, Plastic Man identifies his son has been turned into a demon. When the teams realize this, Mr. Terrific orders them to split up. In one tunnel, the T-Council follows the voices coming from the civilians.

In the other tunnel, the Terrifics follow Plastic Man’s son to Sleroku. When the T-Council arrives, Atom (Ryan Choi) recognizes the voices come from the civilians. Quickly, he shrinks them out of their cocoons. After the Terrifics defeat Sleroku, the demons change back into humans.

The T-Council. DC Comics.

CHECK OUT THE STORY: In ‘Public Enemies,’ #WeDefendCyborg’s Decision To Turn Himself In To The U.S. Government

AGAINST ATOM: HE COULDN’T SAVE SIMON STAGG WHOM SLEROKU KILLED

Simon Stagg.
Simon Stagg. DC Comics.

VISIT THE CYBORG APPRECIATION PAGE.


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ARE YOU A RETURNING VISITOR? WRITE A REVIEW.








LINKS

The Terrifics Vol 1 27 in DC Database.
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Battles Of The Week: John Constantine vs Neron (Hero vs Villain)

 
Home » Religious Warfare

BATTLES OF THE WEEK

To #collectabattle, click on the Amazon product image below to purchase Constantine: The Hellblazer (2015-2016) #13. Visit our product review.

OUR REVIEW RATING SCORE:


























Rating: 5 out of 5.

'Constantine: The Hellblazer' (2016) #13.
Writers and Artists

James Tynion IV and Eryk Donovan.

SYNOPSIS FOR “WORTHLESS”

Neron has taken over every soul in New York City. In order to free each one, Constantine calls in favors. Witness a battle of wits waged in men’s souls!

IN RELIGIOUS WARFARE

'Constantine: The Hellblazer' (2016) #13.
Constantine: The Hellblazer (2016) #13. DC Comics.

Enter the contestants in New York City. On the left side is John Constantine, and on the right side is Neron.

Let’s look at the stats.

CONSTANTINE – PRIME EARTH

Super Strength: Metahuman 17%
Super Speed: Sonic 50%
Durability: Continent 42%
Energy Projection: Multiversal 51%
Fighting Skills: Metahuman 67%
Intelligence: Infinite 100%

PARAPHERNALIA
  • Moonblade.
NERON – PRIME EARTH

Super Strength: Universal 83%
Super Speed: Multiversal 92%
Durability: Universal 83%
Energy Projection: Nigh-Omnipotent 100%
Fighting Skills: Extra-Dimensional 100%
Intelligence: Nigh-Omniscient 100%

VISIT THE DC POWER LEVELS PAGE

THE FIGHT

In order to free each citizen of New York from Neron’s possession, Constantine calls in favors. Mysteriously, he engages in forbidden magic.

The battle to decide who is the true mage!

WINNER: CONSTANTINE WINS BY INCAPACITATION.

A FAN OF CONSTANTINE AND DC COMICS? SUBSCRIBE TO OUR NEWSLETTER TO RECEIVE THE LATEST POSTS ON YOUR FAVORITE HEROES.

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VISIT THE SPECIAL OCCASIONS PAGE

CONSTANTINE IN COMICS

‘Swamp Thing (1985) #37, titled “Growth Patterns” marks the first appearance of John Constantine in DC continuity. The issue tells the origin story of John Constantine. Strangely, he is an occult detective investigating a foretold supernatural appearance. In addition, John Constantine contacts Swamp Thing.

The comic was written by Alan Moore and penciled by Rick Veitch.

CONSTANTINE’S FIRST APPEARANCE
'Swamp Thing' (1985) #35.
Swamp Thing (1985) #37, titled “Growth Patterns” marks the first appearance of John Constantine in DC continuity. DC Comics.

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Constantine: The Hellblazer Vol 1 13 in Comic Vine.
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Image Day: In ‘World’s End,’ The God-Like Max Faraday Causes The Rapture

 
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IMAGE DAY

Writer(s)

Christos N. Gage


Penciler(s)

Shawn Moll


Publisher

Image Comics


Publication Date

September, 2008

IN RELIGIOUS WARFARE

UNTRUSTING OF SUPERHUMANS, MAX FARADAY CAUSES THE RAPTURE

In the Wildstorm Universe, World’s End occurs after Armageddon. Due to the Reaper’s nuclear holocaust, the God-like Max Faraday intervenes. To this end, he causes the Rapture of billions of people from Earth. In reality, he teleports the survivors to St. Louis. There, their routine continues as they are unaware of Armageddon.

At St. Louis, Max is meeting with the WildC.A.T.s and Team 7. Sternly, he blames the disaster on superheroes. Too often, he says, their interference lead to greater threats. For his part, Max plans to remain neutral in the war till all superhumans are erased. When Max senses danger in the South Pacific, he realizes he must intervene.

WITH A REALITY-WARPING CLASH, TAO STEALS MAX’S GODHOOD

In the South Pacific, the terrorist named Tao has threatened Susanna Chaste, Max’s wife. In the nick of time, Max, the WildC.A.T.s and Team 7 teleport on the scene. There, they face Tao and his men. Arduously, the battle rages. Using their reality-warping powers, Max and Tao are matched. Then, Zealot and Kenesha teleport to Hawaii.

There, they enlist Majestic’s help. With the Nemesis Swords – forged in the fires of Creation – Mister Majestic turns the tides. Violently, he pierces Tao’s body. Brutally, Tao is defeated but he has an ace. Before he can be executed, Pit Bull and a goon are holding Max’s wife at gun point. Desperately, Max agrees to reveal the Creation Equation to Tao in order to save her. Dangerously, Tao steals Max’s godhood.

CHECK OUT THE STORY: In “Gang War”, Mister Majestic Becomes The Poster Boy Of The 1990s Leading An Ultra-Violent W.I.L.D.C.A.T.s. Against Friends And Foes Alike.

A FAN OF THIS STORY? CLICK ON Wildcats: World’s End BELOW TO BUY THE COMIC ON AMAZON.

HAVING DIVIDED HIS POWER, MAX AND THE HEROES TRIUMPH

Later, the battle shifts to the Hollow Realm. Here, is the source of Creation. At the Hollow Realm, Tao plans to destroy then re-make the universe. First, he has locked the god-like heroes in prisons of their failed loves. Eventually, Void and Susanna Chaste free themselves. Soon, they confront Tao. In battle, the truth of Tao’s origin emerges. Originally, a test tube baby, he was grown and studied as an experiment. As a result, he grew without love.

Soon, the other heroes emerge. In fact, they tempt Tao with one attempt: to fix himself. Suddenly, Grifter appears and shoots Tao in the head. Then, the villain disappears but does not come back. Soon, Max and the heroes regain their near-full powers. With his faith in superheroes restored, Max tasks them to re-build Earth. In the meantime, he plan on transporting the survivors with Void’s help to the hollow realm. In one final act, Max restores the heroes’ 90s costumes with some alterations.

VISIT THE CYBORG APPRECIATION PAGE.


SOURCES

World’s End in Image Comics Database.

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Dark Horse Day: 5 Reasons Why The 300 Taking On The Persian Army Is The Greatest Human Feat

In '300' (1998) #1, King Leonidas and the 300 Spartans march towards Thermopylae.
 
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DARK HORSE DAY

In '300' (1998) #1, King Leonidas and the 300 Spartans march towards Thermopylae.
In ‘300’ (1998) #1, King Leonidas and the 300 Spartans march towards Thermopylae. AP Photo/Dark Horse Comics.
Official Name

300

Universe

Dark Horse

Heroes

300 Spartans with King Leonidas.

Villains

King Xerxes and armies of Persia.

Creators

Frank Miller and Lynn Varley.

RELIGIOUS WARFARE

5. KING LEONIDAS AND THE SPARTANS’ FEAT IS HISTORICAL

Under Xerxes I, the Persian army moved south through Greece on the eastern coast, accompanied by the Persian navy moving parallel to the shore. To reach its destination at Attica, the region controlled by the city-state of Athens, the Persians needed to go through the coastal pass of Thermopylae (or the “Hot Gates,” so known because of nearby sulfur springs). In the late summer of 480 B.C., Leonidas led an army of 6,000 to 7,000 Greeks from many city-states, including 300 Spartans, in an attempt to prevent the Persians from passing through Thermopylae.

Leonidas established his army at Thermopylae, expecting that the narrow pass would funnel the Persian army toward his own force. For two days, the Greeks withstood the determined attacks of their far more numerous enemy. Leonidas’ plan worked well at first, but he did not know that there was a route over the mountains to the west of Thermopylae that would allow the enemy to bypass his fortified position along the coast.

A local Greek told Xerxes about this other route and led the Persian army across it, enabling them to surround the Greeks. Much of the Greek force retreated rather than face the Persian army. An army of Spartans, Thespians and Thebans remained to fight the Persians. Leonidas and the 300 Spartans with him were all killed, along with most of their remaining allies. The Persians found and beheaded Leonidas’ corpse–an act that was considered to be a grave insult.

-“Leonidas,” History

4. IT OCCURS DURING THE GREEK HEROIC AGE

The Greek Heroic Age is an important part in Hellenism. Though there is disagreement on its starting and its ending years, Greek poet Hesiod agreed it started with the Bronze Age and ended with the Iron Age.

It is agreed that they lived during the times of the war between Troy and Thebes, Hercules’ Twelve Labors and the voyage of Odysseus.

Ancient Greek myths, the stories about gods and heroes, are set sometime “long, long ago”. The ancient poet Hesiod, in his Works and Days, came up with a system of alternating generations of mortals – in English, it is customary to refer to “Ages” instead. The sequence starts with the Golden Age, followed by the Silver Age, the Bronze Age, the Age of Heroes, and finally the Iron Age. The Iron Age was the time when Hesiod himself lived, so contemporary ancient Greece (in his case, around 700 BC).

-An Age Of Heroes?, Ancient World Magazine

3. THERMOPYLAE AND MILITARY STRATEGY

In ‘300’ (1998) #1, King Leonidas gathers 300 Spartans in order to fight the Persian invasion. Because of the Persian numerical advantage, Leonidas uses a military strategy called “defeat in detail.”

Courageously, Leonidas marches the Spartan army to the narrow cliffs of of Thermopylae (“The Hot Gates”). There, the terrain will allow them to make a stand against the Persian army.

In '300' (1998) #1, King Leonidas and the 300 Spartans march towards Thermopylae.
In ‘300’ (1998) #1, King Leonidas and the 300 Spartans march towards Thermopylae. AP Photo/Dark Horse Comics.

CHECK OUT THE STORY: It’s Official! In His Thirst For Vengeance Against The Third Horseman, Black Adam Became A Genocidal Maniac By Killing Every Man, Woman And Child In Bialya.

A FAN OF THE REST OF THIS STORY? CLICK ON “300” BELOW TO PURCHASE THE HD ON AMAZON.

2. 300 SPARTANS VS THOUSAND PERSIANS

First, King Xerxes had conquered Asia and was headed for Greece. In fact, King Xerxes had gathered the Persian army and was worshiped as a god. Second, King Xerxes had an overwhelming numerical advantage in the war. Third, King Leonidas had only 300 Spartans who marched to Thermopylae on foot.

In contrast, King Xerxes and the Persian army had horses and carriages. The only advantage the Spartans had was military strategy. The reason why the 300 Spartans performed the greatest human feat was because they held off a more powerful army with an overwhelming numerical advantage.

In '300' (1998), King Leonidas fights the god Xerxes, the Emperor of Persia and his army at Thermopylae, The Hot Gates.
In ‘300’ (1998) #5, King Leonidas fights the god Xerxes, the Emperor of Persia and his army at Thermopylae, The Hot Gates. AP Photo/Dark Horse Comics.

1. GOD VS MAN: KING LEONIDAS PROVED “EVEN A GOD CAN BLEED”

In '300', King Leonidas' arrow injures Xerxes' right cheek. Photo/Dark Horse Comics.
In ‘300’ (1998) #5, King Leonidas’ arrow injures Xerxes’ right cheek. AP Photo/Dark Horse Comics.

VISIT THE CYBORG APPRECIATION PAGE.


LINKS

300 Vol 1 1 in Dark Horse Database.
Leonidas in HISTORY.
An Age of Heroes? in ANCIENT WORLD MAGAZINE
300 Vol 1 5 in Dark Horse Database