Super Sunday: Raid Force Zero

Raid Force Zero

In a world where evil is winning, superheroes need to be rougher and meaner if they want to make a difference. That is exactly why Lex Techno, had to create Raid Force Zero, a team of supersoldiers intent on destroying evil once and for all. We’ve already met Captain Fire and Earth-Red’s local Beam, but who else makes up the worlds violent saviors?

With Lex Techno, I tried to make the point that 90s Comics were underrated and that their elements undeservingly shunned. With that premise in mind, I am fleshing out this team with some characters that feel to me like they’d fit into those team books that were so common back then (even though I admit I haven’t read them and my artistic skills are even worse than those maligned artists of that decade). Here goes:


Kalpa is an elite alien soldier who originally came to Earth as an invader. Hundreds of such soldiers, modified by alien science to appear human, were sent to Earth, but when they arrived, they found a world torn asunder by supervillains, vampires, and many other threats much worse than mere alien soldiers. Many of his ilk were killed, and Kalpa learned to hate the violence he had been trained to revel in. So now he plans to bring peace to his new home the only way he knows how: through violence.

There were an awful lot of characters in the 90s who had names that were just single words that didn’t really have anything to do with them. Thanks to the Internet, I found the term from Hindu and Buddhist cosmology Kalpa which means a very long time. It works because his human form is meant to appear Indian. Otherwise, it has nothing to do with him, since his powers are all about guns and forcefields.


Trained to kill by the deadliest assassins in the world, and possessing vaguely defined energy powers, Bladestrike is a perfect killing machine. She was part of a squad formed by a shadowy government cabal to take out threats from other nations. On one mission, the threat was too much and Bladestrike and her teammates were killed. Bladestrike, though, didn’t stay killed. Revived by her employers, she was told they would patch her up and get her back into the field as the new leader of the squad. But as soon as she was strong enough, Bladestrike went AWOL. During the time when she was declared dead, she had seen something that she had not told her bosses. She realized she had to change her life around, and Raid Force Zero took her in and are giving her the chance to make those changes.

Scantily clad ninja ladies are, perhaps, the most childish way comics tried to prove they were for adults. But as I think I’ve said before, scantily-clad women aren’t a bad thing in themselves, as long as it isn’t a requirement of all women in the stories, and also that there is more to the characters than just their scant claddedness. Hopefully, I could succeed at meeting my own standards here.

Thunder Thrower

When Carlton Curtis gained the power to create sonic explosions, he decided to use them to clean up the crime in his neighborhood. For years it seemed like he was doing well, but as time went on he gathered more and more enemies, supervillains who seemed to exist just to torment him. The job became too difficult for one man, so when the chance to join Raid Force One came along, it seemed like the best option.

I am picturing Thunder Thrower as a more classic superhero who was revamped into the 90s style. He started off as a symbol of hope and wonder, but then became a bitter and violent anti-hero because the former is too hard to maintain in a world like this. His loved ones were probably all killed off by villains to raise the stakes of his adventures. Note that he does not have electrical powers, he has sonic powers. But maybe he can also fly for no adequately explained reason.

The Crunch

The Crunch is actually a sentient magnetic field created by an evil mad scientist, whom the Crunch soon killed. To form a corporeal body, the Crunch gathers up hunks of scrap metal and compacts it into a super-dense form, including when necessary a magnetically-powered railgun. The Crunch considers humanity lesser beings, and was perfectly willing to kill indiscriminately until Lex Techno brought that to and end by beating the Crunch in a fight. Impressed with Lex’s skills, the Crunch is now willing to serve as a member of Raid Force One.

It may have been my imagination, but it seemed like all the terrible 90s hero teams had a Ben Grimm ripoff. Whether or not that’s true, I felt like I should get one. With his powers, he’d be able to get comically larger every time he showed up. He’d also fill the role of the Boisterous Warrior of the team, reveling in showing off and finding new challenges.

Super Sunday: The Paladins of Podd

The Paladins of Podd

The nation of Podd is essentially a paradise. They’ve eliminated crime and poverty and disease. They’ve got the finest educational system in their world. Menial tasks are done by machines and philosophical and intellectual pursuits are enjoyed by any who want to enjoy them. Podd wants to spread their happiness across the world. Does that make them assholes?

A lot of other nations seem to think so. Podd has a tendency to stick itself into the business of other nations. Sometimes this is good, such as when they provide relief to people who have been stricken by drought or disaster. Other times their presence is less appreciated, such as when they try to force other countries to change their policies by force. We may think it is right for them to fight for sexuality equality in the neighboring nation of Kebash, but do we agree when they force the nation of Islopia to free convicted criminals? What right does Podd have to tell other countries how to go about their business? After all, only a century ago, Podd itself was a nation with institutionalized slavery and anti-religious laws. Is Podd a great nation that has learned from its mistakes, or is it a land of hypocrites?

Podd works extremely hard to maintain the moral high ground. When Podd declares war on another nation, a typical year will result in about a dozen Podd soldiers’ deaths. But their enemies will suffer no casualties at the hands of Podd. They have perfected all manner of non-lethal weaponry and they aren’t afraid to use it. Podd soldiers will gladly surrender their lives for the cause, but the lives of others are not theirs to sacrifice.

Ren Lighten is the head of Podd’s Drop Knights. This Corps of soldiers will be flown over enemy lines and parachuted in to set up strongholds and engage the local populace when possible. Ren is the son of a government official and was raised with the values of Podd at his core. He could have lived a life of luxury (but then, so could anyone in Podd), but he had to get out there and make a difference. He’s the ideal Podd soldier.

Kurk Wisher was not raised in Podd. He was, in fact, an enemy who met Podd soldiers on the field of battle. As often happens, he was swiftly beaten. But when he saw how much better Podd was than his home at treating soldiers, he questioned his loyalty. Not only were the prisoners well treated, but Podd’s own soldiers who suffered from post-traumatic stress were cared for better than anyone in his home had been. As is the practice, Kurk was given his freedom when the war ended, and he promptly signed up with the more appealing side.

There are times when some individual in some nation other than Podd, scientists and community leaders or the like, are in danger, but the officials of Podd consider that person important. Before they even realize they are the target of sinister forces, those individuals will meet Bob Felling. The hulking soldier is one of Podd’s Target Guardians. When assigned to protect someone, Bob makes sure they stay protected. Such Guardians are the last unit of Podd’s military to carry a weapon designed to be fatal: a sword. While it is fully capable of killing, the Guardians consider it purely ceremonial. Those being protected by the Guardians are usually from nations that have not yet abandoned killing as a means of defense, so it does serve a comforting purpose for them as well.

Shell Worldly is part of the newest of the Podd military’s units. Some of them consider covert espionage to be underhanded and shady. Shell doesn’t necessarily agree with that sentiment, but her role as Podd’s first Overt Spy gives her a chance to show off her skills, so she is happy with it. Raised in a house with many competitive siblings, Shell always liked to prove herself to be the best. Now she does it on a national scale. If one of Podd’s enemy nations is, for example, constructing a nuclear missile silo, and they are trying to be sneaky about it, Shell Worldly will waltz up to the gates and let herself be noticed by as many of the guards as possible. She will break in and steal blueprints or take photos and escape uncaptured, but plainly seen. The message is simple: You can not hide your evil machinations from the nation of Podd, and they don’t fear you enough to bother trying to hide anything from you.

Wearing the blood red that is universal code for the occupation on this world, Dara Talik is a field medic. Among most countries, not just Podd, it is considered a war crime to attack medics on the battlefield, but Podd is unique in the amount of focus that they give on their opponents. Talik’s family is a member of the religious minority that was brutally oppressed in Podd only generations ago, but now her faith in both her god and her nation have made her one of the bravest heroes Podd has ever seen. There is no situation too dangerous for her to try to help the wounded.

So are the forces of Podd the good guys? It depends who you ask. But if history is written by the victors, it looks like Podd is going to be writing some history pretty soon.

Notes: Podd is set in another universe not already introduced in Super Sundays. I found among my notes mentions of an idea for a “Shotguns and Sorcery” world that combine elements from modern military and political fiction with fantasy universe stuff. I like the idea, so Podd is my first entry into this new alternate Earth that has magic and monsters, but still has trucks and planes and computers and such. And now I’ve got another world to flesh out.

Super Sunday: Wallfixers


The Order of Wallfixers is a multiverse-spanning group of alien wizards. Every now and then, a sort of glitch occurs and a sentient being is born with an inherent mystical power to travel between universes. It’s extremely rare, but in the infinite expanses of countless universes, rare things happen more often than one might suppose. Here’s some of them:


Lupplol was an ordinary kid growing up in the seas of the Pllvm homeworld. It seemed likely that he’d go into the family business, herding foodfish, but he always wanted something more. But suddenly, a dark force appeared in the local oceans: a dark force from Beyond Space and Time! Leeching off the life-energies of the Pllvm, a daemonic monster began to materialize, an army of warped Pllvm serving as its minions. Lupplol’s family was among those converted. The boy’s life was ruined, until a strange visitor, also from another world, came and showed Lupplol the vast power within him. Using his new-found magical ability, the boy banished the dark force, ended its threat to his world, and took his place among the Wallfixers.

Noado Buk

Noado Buk was trained by Dryon Veha, one of the most powerful Wallfixers of all time, but Noado’s sights were never set as high as Veha’s. While Veha thinks of things in the large scale, combatting threats that a mortal mind can scarcely comprehend, Noado prefers to help individuals on a smaller level. At first there was contention between mentor and protoge, talk of squandered potential, but Noado argued that making things better on the small scale would add up to things being better on a larger scale. Veha was satisfied and now Noadu wanders the cosmos doing good wherever he can.

Okay, I hadn’t hoped to get into these guys so quickly, because the Wallfixers are my “buffer” characters for Supernatural Sunday year. They’re easy to make up and I can post a couple whenever I have had a week in which I couldn’t get something better done. This was such a week, so here are some of them.

One thing that always bothers me in stories about multiple universes in peril, especially in comics, is how human-centric everything is. In comics any such story (in which the universes are explicitly called Alternate Earths) and the fate of these universes always falls in the hands of the human heroes. I’m sick of anthropocentric bias and I’m going to fight it as much as possible. That’s what the Wallfixers are about. If there are any humans in the group, they’re an extreme minority. Both of today’s Wallfixers are aliens from aquatic worlds (one of those worlds we have seen before) because not breathing air separates them from humanity even more.

We’ll see more of these guys eventually, but hopefully not too soon.

Super Sunday: The Gross Girls

The Gross Girls

Dr. Gross

A brilliant scientist devoted to improving the human body, Dr. Gross’s experiments came to a tragic end when a simple accidental jab of a needle into her finger transferred a virus into her bloodstream. The virus took over her body and reworked her into a living, walking biomass. After some time, Gross’s mind reestablished control, though traumatized by the experience, and Gross took up her experiments again, this time hoping to find a way to reverse her condition. Unfortunately, doing super-science costs a lot of money, so she turned to crime to finance her experiments. Luckily, attempting to modify the human form in this way has given her a number of superhuman women to serve as her henchmen.

Rolling Chaos

Questa Simonson was homeless and perfectly willing to make some cash by signing up for strange experiments. Gross made her into Rolling Chaos, a cyborg who can transform into a compact vehicular form capable of dealing out immense damage. Being her first such experiment, Questa is Gross’s longest-serving and most loyal crook.


One of Gross’s experiments resulted in a woman who now exists in a terrible state of flux. Bulging and pulsating seemingly at random, Distortia is frequently in constant pain, though that pain lessens when she focuses her power into other things, which inevitably tears them apart. Though she blames Gross for her fate, she stays with the team because of the hope that Gross will one day be able to reverse the condition.


Electrissa is the quiet one. With electric eel-style shock powers, and some aquatic mutations to go with it, she is a useful member of the team, but she doesn’t associate too closely with the others.


The woman now called Ruinmaker was the only of the Gross Girls who actively sought out Gross because she wanted superhuman powers. She got them. Ruinmaker is a deadly thing, strong and terrible, capable of healing extremely quickly. This kind of rapid cellular regeneration is of particular interest to Gross, who thinks it may be the key to finding her cure. Ruinmaker doesn’t really care. She just likes being the strongest.

In spite of the juvenile name, this is not a collection of characters I created in my youth (though there was a sketch of the one who became Rolling Chaos in my notes). I’m nearing the end of the Supervillain Sunday year and I wanted to use up a batch of the sketches that I didn’t have any particular idea, so I took a bunch and crammed them into this one team. Distortia, especially, was just a particularly poorly drawn sketch that I decided to go with anyway. But in the end, I used a bunch of sketches, and that is what is important.

Super Sunday: The Network City Bastards

The Network City Bastards

Network City, corrupt as it is, is a place of rules and order. With cybernetic police soldiers patrolling the streets and every corner of the city watched by cameras, rebellion is hard to do. So those who do rebel have to rebel hard:


Network City is the world’s technology leader, so with his exceptional hacking skills (using augmented reality goggles and “hacking guns” of course), Augmentor is right at home. He is the leader of the group, inasmuch as they have a leader, and he is also responsible for their ability to escape the omnipresent cameras and police databases. He probably pretends like he is fighting against the fascist pigs who run the city, but that’s just an excuse to do whatever he wants.


Antipathi has nanotechnology coursing through her veins, keeping her muscles and bones superhumanly strong and making her quick and agile. She also has a general hatred for humanity coursing through her mind. Her alliance with the Bastards is mostly just a convenient means for her to punch stuff and hurt people. She’s good at it too.


A cybernetics genius with a bad attitude, this teenage troublemaker wears a powerful cyber suit that makes him a physical rival of even the strongest cyborg police officers in the city. And he is always ready to prove himself in a fight. Exoskeleto’s favorite activity is showing off just how powerful he is. That can sometimes lead to problems when the rest of the team is trying to be subtle and Exoskeleto is aching for a fight.


Spikethrower throws spikes. She has cybernetic devices in her bones that, in addition to giving her an unnatural jumping ability, also produces metal spikes that “grow” out of her back. When you’ve got spikes, might as well throw them, right?

These four characters: I had not drawn them with any connection in mind, but I figured that grouping them together would move us along more quickly. It does also help me fill one niche: This is less true than it was when I was young, but teenaged villains were once not particularly common. For the longest time it seemed that teenagers would be the super heroes and they’d fight adult criminals (starting with Spider-Man, I guess). I suppose this was about appealing to the target audience, youths, but c’mon… we all know that actual teens are jerks. Let’s let them be super-jerks. (“Prove me wrong, kids! Prove me wrong!”)