Posted on: March 19th, 2009 Hero/Villain of the Week!
His first appearance was in DC’s “Omega Men #3.” His real name is unpronounceable, and roughly translates as “he who devours your entrails and thoroughly enjoys it.” Yes, this week’s featured Hero/Villain is the nasty, the gritty, the universe’s most bad-ass contract killer and bounty hunter, the infamous Lobo. The character was created by Roger Slifer and Keith Giffen. Originally intended as a hardened, rarely-used noir villain in the 1980s, he languished in limbo until his revival as an anti-hero biker in the early 1990s. The character was one of DC’s most popular characters throughout the 90s. But his creators didn’t really understand his popularity: ”I have no idea why Lobo took off,” Giffen once said in an interview. Referring to the 1990s incarnation of Lobo he created, he said, “I came up with him as an indictment of the Punisher, Wolverine, hero prototype and somehow he caught on as the high violence poster boy. Go figure.” He is known throughout the galaxy as the bounty hunter that never loses his prey. Lobo is a one man army, and that’s why I think he is awesome. No need for fancy words here, it just wouldn’t do Lobo any justice. Lobo is one bad dude. I love the character because he is like the manifestation of all things men secretly long for and secretly want to be, times a thousand. The character is rude and crude, and if you can’t handle that, you might as well stop reading this now. For those of you who don’t know anything about the most intense bounty hunter in the DC universe, here is a bio with some essential Lobo info:
Lobo is the sole survivor of the planet Czarnia, once renowned as a tranquil paradise. Lobo was trouble as soon as he was born, biting off the midwife’s fingers, chasing the doctors with scalpels, and frightening the delivery nurse to death. As a child, he killed every caretaker he had. Finally, he committed global genocide, creating a horde of lethal insects that slaughtered every last Czarnian. Lobo then became a mercenary, leaving a trail of blood and corpses in his wake. Once Lobo has targeted a victim, that person has little hope of escape and even less of winning ANY fight- for the only way to destroy Lobo is to vaporize every part of him, down to the last cell. He is nearly impervious to physical attack. Lobo has an uncanny ability to sense his opponent’s weaknesses, both physical AND mental. He has an amazing genetic ability to replicate himself into an entire army of exact clones! And he is just as well known as a bar-room brawler as he is a bounty hunter. Crossing the galaxy on his intergalacticycle (the Hog) like a deep space Hell’s Angel, he has taken more than his fair share of lives, loot, and loves, in that order. Don’t cross him, unless you want to die.
Physically, Lobo resembles a chalk-white human male with blood-red pupil-less eyes surrounded by black mascara-like patches. Like many comic book characters, Lobo’s body is highly muscular. He was originally portrayed as having neatly trimmed purple-grey hair, but this was soon redesigned to be a long, straggly, grey-black mane, and more recently into dreadlocks. Similarly, the orange-and-purple leotard he wore in his first few appearances has long since been replaced by black leather biker gear, which more recently has been replaced with seemingly pirate-inspired gear. His arsenal includes numerous guns and a chain with a hook on his right arm. Extra weapons may include “frag grenades” and giant carving blades. Lobo possesses extraordinary strength of undefined limits. Lobo also possesses superhuman durability. If Lobo sustains injury, his accelerated healing factor enables him to regenerate damaged or destroyed tissue with superhuman speed and efficiency, and little apparent pain. Lobo also is functionally immortal. He is immune to the effects of aging and disease and he has been banned from entering either Heaven or Hell. As such, even though he can sustain sufficient injury to be out of commission for quite some time, he will apparently heal from any injury, given sufficient time. For instance, Lobo can regenerate out of a pool of his own blood, apparently recycling the cells.
In addition to his ever-present lust for violence, Lobo also has a strict personal code of honor – he will never violate the letter of an agreement, although he may gleefully disregard its spirit. He believes his word is his bond. Lobo has some legendary stories, and has participated in some legendary battles. Lobo eventually discovered Earth, and began challenging the planet’s greatest heroes, including Superman, Warrior, The Justice League of America, Hitman, Judge Dredd, Valor, Starman, The Ray, Deadman, and Green Lantern Guy Gardner (Lobo visits Warrior’s, Guy’s bar, where he enjoys free drinks) among others. He was a part of the DC vs. Marvel Crossover event, in which he squares off with Wolverine… and loses in a battle in which the outcome was decided by real fans. In the Amalgam Comics universe, Lobo is fused with Howard the Duck to become… Lobo the Duck! If you don’t know anything about that, but you like your comics to make you laugh, I highly recommend you find that. One of my personal favorite of these battles was Lobo’s encounter with Wonder Woman. The story began with Lobo becoming a pawn of the Olympian Gods in their battle against Circe. He went on to murder dozens of Amazonians, eventually being captured by Wonder Woman herself. I’m sure you can imagine what a guy like Lobo would do when he encountered a woman like Diana.
Worthy of note are Lobo’s non-hero related appearances. Lobo also appeared several times in the pages of The Authority. In one such appearance, Jenny Quantum finds a comic book detailing Lobo’s murder of Santa Claus, she experiences a fit of rage and confusion. She breaks the barrier between her dimension and the dimension Lobo inhabits in the comic book, and Lobo finds himself in a fight with The Authority. In the two-part “Lobo vs The Mask” crossover, Lobo is hired for the sum of one billion credits by a council of survivors of several devastated planets to track down the individual responsible. His trail leads to Earth, where Lobo encounters the current wearer of an ancient mask. That was a lot of fun, as far as cross-overs are concerned. The last series I will mention is the ”Reign in Hell” miniseries. ”Heaven doesn’t want him, and Hell certainly doesn’t either. Lobo rampages through the afterlife…” I highly recommend you check that one out too!
Lobo is listed as a Villain in the DC Comics Encyclopedia, but he has worked with heroes in the past. I think that is what I find most interesting about him. He is somewhat of an anti-hero, along the same lines of my all time favorite characters Deadpool. In fact, if you look closely enough, you could draw a lot of comparisons between the two. All of Lobo’s appearances are just plain fun; from the comic books to the various appearances in the DC animated universe’s series’. It is important to note that one thing that all Lobo writers have agreed upon is that the character just shouldn’t take himself too seriously. There is a lot of sarcasm and wit in the pages of all Lobo comics, in addition to the just plain silly. Lobo can pull it off though. Are you going to say anything to him about it?!? Hell No! It just doesn’t get any cooler than Lobo. A character for real “manly men.” Lobo will go down as one of the most interesting and complex characters in DC universe as well. He may seem like a one-track mind, brutal killer, but I implore you to read some Lobo comics. If you read enough, you will see there is more to this intergalactic bad ass than meets the eye. But you have to dig to find it. Gotta love me some Lobo. So now you have some homework to do. Until next time!
3 Responses to “Hero/Villain of the Week!”
March 19th, 2009 at 4:07 pm
Pretty wicked ass dude! I like him already!
Ryan Ferrier Says:
March 20th, 2009 at 11:20 am
Awesome post Jon! I’m actually quite the Lobo noob, so this was refreshing. Though I did read Batman VS Lobo… what a mindfuck that was
Jon Stephens Says:
March 20th, 2009 at 11:59 am
Lobo rules, I love characters like that. Batman vs Lobo was pretty good. Did you read the Marvel/DC crossover with Lobo vs Wolverine. It was really cool. I wanted Lobo to win!