If you had to ask me “Which superhero or villain is the closest friend to Rocket Racer?” I’d obviously have to reply the Prowler. They’ve been friends in a bunch of comics. But Bob’s relationship with Prowler is a topic for some other post. Today I’m talking about the best friend Rocket Racer has that we’ve barely been shown: Antoine Delsoin, the Hypno-Hustler!
Bob and Antoine first appeared together in a story that is likely the worst story in Rocket Racer’s limited history of appearances. But I won’t hold that against the relationship between the two characters.
When we first see Bob and Antoine as a pair, they are in prison together, and join a “crew” assembled by the criminal known as Tombstone (also, Big Ben is there, but we don’t need to worry about him now). We’re not told if this is the first time Bob and Antoine have met, but they don’t seem to get along well. I posit maybe they knew each other and even worked together, got caught, and blame each other. That would certainly cause some tension between them.
That story came and went until, suddenly, fourteen years later, another comic depicted the two together. This time, it was just a single panel (but a better comic). Bob and Antoine, both out of prison at this point, were just talking about developments in the superhero/villain community. We have no way to know if this was their first time catching up since prison, or if they’ve stayed in touch all along.
But what I do know is that Bob and Antoine make a good pair of friends. Antoine, like Bob, is a low-level supercrook who is pretty ridiculous on the surface and is routinely mocked for it. The main difference between them is that Antoine is never embarrassed by it. In his way, Antoine has a lot more self-respect than Bob. He’s more socially active, he is comfortable being himself, and unlike Bob, Antoine definitely fucks.
They’re a great contrasting pair. I’d like to see their relationship continue to shine in what few appearances these chumps get. Heck, make ’em roommates, sharing a supervillain lair because neither makes enough to afford one on their own.
I mean, why not?