Cobbwell

The last teacher seen in Spider-Man: Homecoming is one seen very briefly, Mr. Cobbwell, portrayed by Tunde Adebimpe. In the movie, he’s spotted during his own class, a lesson Peter doesn’t exactly follow as he’s busy trying a new formula for his webs. In the comics, Cobbwell is quite different: not only he’s much older than Adebimpe’s version and is Caucasian, opposed to the movie’s African American teacher, but he doesn’t even teach in high school (albeit Peter meets him there). A secondary character nevertheless, he’s however at the centre of several misadventures: let’s see together.

Not much is known about Cobbwell’s life, not even his first name. He was possibly born in New York City, what’s for sure is that he lived and worked there. It’s unknown how famous he was as a young man, but as an elder he was a famed electronics expert, always up-to-date with the new technologies, eager to study, understand and replicate the new inventions that day by day made the scientific landscape wider, and of course to contribute to such progress. He was an affirmed and respected member of New York’s scientific community, and once he received a warm recomendation from one of his friends and colleagues, science teacher Raymond Warren, who sent one of his most brilliant students, Peter Parker, to him for an internship. Warren himself introduced Parker to Cobbwell, and the professor was quite impressed with the kid: he offered him to come to his lab on weekends to help him with his experiments, and Peter enthusiastically accepted. The two worked well together, and Cobbwell started trusting the boy. He even let him work on the experiment on his own while he gave lectures at several institutes, and once he asked him to pick a radio from a ridiculously cheap repair shop he had found some days before, Phineas Mason‘s shop. Obviously without suspecting anything, Cobbwell put in motion a series of events that led Spider-Man to battle the criminal genius Tinkerer, all over a repaired radio.

The cooperation between Cobbwell and Peter continued in the best of ways, even if the professor started noticing that some pieces of technology were missing from his lab. His suspicions unfortunately became true when a student from Midtown High SchoolFlash Thompson, informed Principal Davis and Counselor Flannigan that Peter Parker had been stealing things from Cobbwell’s lab. Parker didn’t deny the fact, losing all the faith the professor had in him, even if he tried to apologize. Unbeknownst to Cobbwell, Peter was Spider-Man, and he had used the tech he had “borrowed” from his lab to build an anti-sonic inverter to defeat the supervillain Clash: all he knew was that a student he liked had exploited his trust to steal from him. He refused Peter’s apologies, and asked him to go away. The boy, however, was determined to make amend for what he had done, and he saved money for months in order to collect enough to repay Cobbwell of all the equipment he had taken from him; he finally made it, and came back to the professor’s workshop. Cobbwell, once again, was impressed by the kid, and accepted the check he was giving to him, but he remarked that he wasn’t taking him back as an intern. Peter immediately answered that he wasn’t repaying him having his position back, but just to make things right. Cobbwell approved, but still closed his door on the boy: as glad he could be Parker was trying to make amend, the boy was still a thief, and he wasn’t allowing him near his machinery ever again.

Professor Cobbwell is a cheerful and gentle man, a brilliant scientist who’s always ready to give a hand to young talents. Still passionate for his job and happy for his position, Cobbwell is one of the greatest experts in mechanics around, and a skilled technical engineer. A good man with a well-earned reputation, Cobbwell is a friendly and willing man, whose trust, however, is hard to win back once lost.

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Morgan Edge

The ComicCon provided us also with trailers for the upcoming tv-series, and DC dominated the scene with an ever-expanding tv universe. In Supergirl Season 3 trailer we got a first look at a new antagonist, Morgan Edge, portrayed by Adrian Pasdar, a media mogul from L-Corp who’ll become quite a rival to Lena Luthor. The character already had three live action appearances, albeit two of them were different versions of him: in Superman IV: The Quest for Peace the corrupted David Warfield portrayed by Sam Wanamaker, who takes over Daily Planet transforming it in a second-rate newspaper, is clearly based on Edge, while in Lois & Clark: The New Adventures of Superman Bruce Campbell‘s Bill Church Jr. is an amalgamation of Edge (he even possesses a tv station with a nearly identical name to Edge’s, Multiworld Communications) and Bruno Mannheim. Edge directly appeared only in Smallville, portrayed by Rutger Hauer and Patrick Bergin, as a crime lord from Metropolis who has a past with Lionel Luthor, and acts as quite a foe for both Lex and Clark during whole Season 3. In the comics, Edge has a much more sinister partner than Lionel: let’s see together.

Morgan Edge was born in Metropolis, the son of the wealthy media mogul Vincent Edge. Vincent wasn’t exactly a nominee to the “father of the year award”, as he constantly abused his son, teaching discipline in the most violent and brutal way. Morgan found tenderness and comfort only in his mother, but even that safe harbor was eventually taken away from him: one day, while the entire family was walking down a street in Metropolis, Vicent got angry at his son as usual, and started disciplining him as he always did: slapping and shouting. Morgan’s mother, not standing her son being publicly humiliated and beaten for the umpteenth time, tried to intervene, with the only effect of Vincent turning on her in front of Morgan’s terrified eyes. During the fight, Vincent pushed his wife with too much strength, and the woman ended in the middle of the traffic, being run over and killed by a bus. When the police arrived, Vincent forced his son to testify that his mother had slipped, and the woman’s death was dismissed as a tragic accident. This marked a turning point in Morgan’s life, as his hatred for his father grew to unbearable levels, but he was so afraid of him that he could do nothing against him. Eventually, one night, he climbed on his house’s roof during a storm, and shouted his anger and hatred to the sky in a mute prayer…a prayer that was listened not by the god he was thinking about, but by a god nevertheless: Darkseid, the cruel tyrant of Apokolips. The New God promised the boy he would have made him strong, fearless, able to stand up to his father and to get his revenge on him, if he only consecrated his entire life to him. Full of hatred for his father, Morgan Edge “sold his soul” to Darkseid, and from that very moment his humanity was lost forever.

Darkseid kept his promise, and he was for Morgan the father figure he never had, molding him into a ruthless man, who could channel his anger and hatred into a sharp intellect. As an adult, the first thing that Morgan did was to exclude his father from the media company he himself had founded, Galaxy Communications, forcing him to an early retirement and making even his public name disappear: for a man like Vincent, who had based all his power on media exposure, anonymity was worse than death. As the new CEO of Galaxy Communications, Edge became one of the wealthiest and most powerful men in Metropolis, but he of course had to do the bidding of his master, Darkseid: using his connections, he created a criminal empire in the underworld of Metropolis, and he even provided street criminals with futuristic weapons from Apokolips. The result was the origin of Intergang, one of the most dangerous and vicious criminal groups Metropolis had ever seen, hellbent on creating chaos in the city without an apparent purpose. Edge always maneuvred Intergang from behind the curtains, sure that nobody would have ever connected the gang to him. Eventually, however, Edge discovered he had been deceived from the very beginning: the one he believed to be Darkseid was actually DeSaad, another New God, who had pretended to be his master to create random havoc on Earth, using Edge as a puppet and making him promises he would have never been able to keep. If this wasn’t enough, two journalists from the Daily Planet were on Edge’s trails: Clark Kent and Cat Grant, who were following unexpected leads to connect Galaxy Communications to Intergang (the latter as an insider). Edge was exposed and imprisoned, and even Vincent came back to resume control over GC: Morgan, however, was a master of the power of the media, and a prison wasn’t able to keep him from using what he had learnt to destroy his enemies, even from afar…

Morgan Edge is an unscrupolous and ruthless man, a highly intelligent businessman created by his father’s abuses and DeSaad’s lies. A media mogul who knows how to twist facts in order to manipulate the public opinion, Edge is one of the most dangerous men alive as long as he has access to a computer or a camera, using his intellect and his charisma to shape the world into a distorted version of it, also managing to appear a hero at the eyes of people as he does it…usually making the true heroes appear as criminals, of course.

Seymour O’Reilly

Nearly every student we see in Spider-Man: Homecoming has a history in the comics, and the skinny guy seen in the gym, the one who believes Spider-Man wears a mask because he’s horribly disfigured, makes no exception. That’s Seymour O’Reilly, portrayed by J. J. Totah. He’s seen just a couple of times as a member of Liz Allan‘s group, and in the comics as well he’s nothing more than a background character, who received a name many issues after his first appearance. The only memorable thing about his entire publication life is his end, the appropriate one for an unberable punk like him: let’s see together.

Seymour O’Reilly was born in QueensNew York City, possibly in Forest Hills. When he was a kid he had many friends, among which Peter Parker: he was even one of Peter’s best friends, attending his eleventh birthday party (one of Peter’s best memories of his childhood)…quite ironic, considering that he became one of Peter’s greatest torments in Midtown High School. As a teenager, in fact, Seymour became, as well as many of his old friends, quite obsessed with popularity, and he chose the easiest way to obtain it: to stick to the most popular, funny and energetic guy in school, Flash Thompson, and to become his “yes man”. When Flash chose the “bookworm” Parker as his favourite target, Seymour turned on his former friend, and started tormenting him, hoping to gain Flash’s approval for it. He didn’t lose an occasion for provoking or taunting Peter, and from making fun of his interest for science to teasing him while other kids beat him, he always had something sharp to say to him…always hidden behind someone else’s back, of course. Obviously, when Flash became the greatest fan of Spider-Man, the new hero in town, Seymour followed him in this new passion, and he was (almost) in the first line cheering for the hero as he battled Sandman in Midtown High’s corridors. Ironically, he mocked Peter Parker (who actually was Spider-Man) immediately after because he ran away from a fight with Flash. His highest moments in life were probably when he organised a prank on Peter, helping Flash to dress as Spider-Man to scare him, and when he obtained an official boxing match between Parker and Flash…even if this one didn’t end exactly like he had imagined.

With Seymour repeating over and over to Flash not to end the fight too quickly, O’Reilly was quite shocked in seeing Parker knocking his hero out with a single punch, but he eventually accused Peter of cheating, accusing him of hitting Flash when he wasn’t even looking, distracted by the havoc created by the Living Computer. All Seymour’s life was limited to school, and all his school’s life was connected to Flash Thompson: his only “evasion” were his fishing trips with his grandfather to Empire Lake. Considering this, it was almost inevitable that he turned out to be nearly the only one from his class to never grow up: even after graduation, he remained the stupid, arrogant bully he had always been. He grew old, he became a grown up man, he got himself a tattoo on his right arm, but he remained a childish prick. During the first reunion of Midtown High School he attended to, he even tried to stick a “Kick me” sign onto someone’s back, with the only result of receiving a well-earned punch to the face. Accomplishing pretty much nothing in life, Seymour kept living as if he was still in high school, mantaining the same attitude and the same social rules, something that became blatant during the following Midtown High reunion. This time, Peter Parker attended along with his wife…the beautiful super-model Mary Jane Watson: this was simply wrong for Seymour’s perspective, and he grew extremely jealous of Parker, who dared to break the social rules he had been living all his life following. He gathered two other bullies of the old times, Charlie and Ernie, to punish him, and tried to give Parker a wedgie, but Peter easily fended them off. His pranks were interrupted by Angelo Fortunato, the new Venom, who broke in wanting to kill Spider-Man…and Seymour saw in amusement as Peter Parker revealed himself as the hero. Before he could even think of telling this to someone else, Seymour had his neck broken by Venom, who used him as a projectile against Spider-Man. A pathetic end for a pathetic man.

Seymour O’Reilly is a mean-spirited young man, a coward who lives as a parasite on other people’s popularity and strenght and who imposes himself only over the weak and defenseless ones. Even as an adult, he’s still the dumb and overbearing bully he was as a kid, a man who lives in the past just because he’s unable to get a real life after high school.

Topaz

I just realised there’s another character spottable in Thor: Ragnarok, probably a minor one. Rachel House, in fact, has been officially credited as Topaz, the intimidating woman standing by Grandmaster‘s side and acting as his bodyguard, and Topaz is a familiar name to the comics’ readers. The character, however, seems to have undergone quite a number of changes: the original one is no alien, she sports a completely different physique (albeit she’s famous for switching bodies from time to time, so that isn’t much of a problem), and most of all she’s more of a witch than a gladiator. This considered, it’s likely we’ll meet a totally different character in the movie, but let’s take a look at the original nevertheless.

Topaz’s origins are still a mystery to everybody, herself included. She was found in India as a little girl by Taboo, a powerful sorcerer who was at the time in a prison camp, since he had refused to use his magic for the Indian government. Taboo saw a great potential in the baby, and he adopted her, teaching her how to use magic with the intention of using her in future times. As a girl, Topaz was quite lonely, since the other prisoners feared her because of her abilities, and avoided her even if she just materialised flowers as gifts to other people. When she was a young woman and her magic power was strong enough, Taboo was looking for the infamous Darhold, a magic book he thought was in possession of Jack Russell…better known as the Werewolf by Night, a foe beyond his reach. Following Taboo’s instructions, Topaz took control of Russell, manipulating him to give Taboo the Darhold…but doing so she learnt to know him, and realised he was a good man struggling against a curse he didn’t understand nor he could control. When Taboo ordered her to kill Russell, she refused, entering in contrast with her master and mentor. Exploiting her control of the Werewolf, she allied with the monster to defeat Taboo, and later she left with Jack, helping him in gaining control over his curse. He even assisted him in investigating on his family’s story, and she fought side by side with him against impossible foes like Dracula. Getting close to Russell’s family, Topaz met both his grandmother, Maria Russoff, whom she cured from an insanity that had led her to raise an army of zombies, and Lissa Russell, Jack’s sister, whom she erased the werewolf curse from. Her powers, however, were rapidly diminishing, so she travelled back to India to restore them. In her (alleged) homeland, Topaz was secretly attacked by the powerful mystic Glitternight, who ripped from her a portion of her soul and created a Soul Beast from it; when Topaz realised what had happened to her, she brought her powers to a new limit to defeat Glitternight and his Beast, destroying the latter and regaining her whole soul.

By surpassing Glitternight, Topaz’s powers had become so great that when she faced the demon lord Mephisto she managed to destroy him, an impossible task for nearly any mortal (if mortal she was). Mephisto’s minions, however, took advantage of her weakened state to exile her in a demonic dimension, cursing her so that if she ever came out of it she would have lost yet another portion of her soul, losing all the empathy that made her human. Topaz spent years in the isolated dimension, and she was freed only when Mephisto, who in the meanwhile had restored himself, was seemingly destroyed again by Franklin Richards. Topaz was not the woman she was anymore, and she remained an emotionless powerhouse until Doctor Strange and Urthona casted a powerful spell to restore her soul. Grateful, Topaz used her powers to heal Wong, Strange’s loyal servant and friend, and she sided with the Sorcerer Supreme for a while. When Doctor Strange turned to black magic, however, Topaz abandoned him, and decided to leave all the mystic and cosmic battles that had been part of her life since her childhood, and she opened a bar in New York City: she named it Voodoo Lounge, and she made it a safe harbor for every disciple who wanted to become magician, sorcerer, witch or warlock. She came back to the scene when Strange, who had come back to the “light side” in the meanwhile, was about to be vanquished by his old enemy Dormammu: she aided him in the battle, only to disappear once again when the demon was defeated. This single act of heroism didn’t go unpunished, and as soon as Dormammu found her, he sent his minions to capture her, bringing her to the Dark Dimension to be his slave. Once again she was saved by Strange, who took her back to Earth. Topaz came back to be Strange’s disciple for a while, until she joined him in a battle against the demon Hellphyr: during a fight, master and disciple joined other magic users, Jennifer Kale (sister of the man possessed by Hellphyr) and the demoness Satana. Topaz worked quite well with the two of them, and they formed the Three Witches, a trio bent on protecting the world from mystical threats that went unnoticed by the Sorcerer Supreme.

Topaz is a mysterious young woman, gifted with a keen intellect and a sincere altruism that lead her to use her remarkable talents always for something good. She’s an extremely powerful witch, with a complete mastership over a number of spells, especially the ones concerning teleport, telekinesis, healing, mind control and mind reading; she can also act as a familiar to more powerful sorcerers, channelling their abilities and redirecting them; she’s somehow able to change body, as she first appeared as a Caucasian woman and later as an Indian one. One of the most powerful mystics in existence, Topaz is still a mystery to be solved, a woman who literally appeared out of nowhere who can be much more than what she appears to be.

Jason Ionello

Time for another Spider-Man: Homecoming character, another one of Peter‘s many schoolmates: Jason Ionello, portrayed by Jorge Lendeborg Jr. In the movie, Jason is the one hosting the school’s news along with Betty Brant, and he even tries to invite her to the homecoming, but he gets rejected live on tv. He’s later seen in the gym as well during Coach Wilson‘s class, and again on tv while he’s commenting on the Spider-Man mania spreading through school. In the comics, Jason is part of Peter’s original group of friends, but while in high school he changes quite a bit. Let’s see together.

Jason Ionello was born in QueensNew York City. As a kid, he often hanged out with a number of friends from his same neighborhood: his best friend Sally Avril, Peter Parker, Tiny McKeeverSeymour O’Reilly and Liz Allan, the same who were in his class at elementary school. The group sticked together even during middle-high school, proving to be inseparable…at least until they entered Midtown High School, the place where everything changed. Craving for popularity as all the other kids, Jason did exactly what most of his friends did: he found the most popular guy in school and started hanging out with him, doing everything he did, laughing at everything he laughed at, liking whatever he liked. The guy in question was Flash Thompson, a muscular bully who had made Peter Parker his favourite target…and Jason played along, soon forgetting an old friendship, sacrificed to the new world they were living in. Jason found an identity as the joker of the group, and he played a lot of cruel pranks at Peter, making him the lauhging stock of the entire school. Once, he even hid Parker’s clothes during gym, humiliating the boy in public…something even Flash scolded him for, considering it “going too far”. Among his old friends, only Sally remained what she used to be for him (maybe even something more…), and the two kept being two peas in a pod. When it became clear Sally wanted to go “all in” in the school’s game of popularity, Jason tried to unite her obsession to his own, that was to discover Spider-Man’s secret identity: when J. Jonah Jameson offered $1000 reward for unmasking the “menace”, Jason told Sally about it, and the two committed themselves to the task. Armed with a professional camera, they left into the night, tailing the hero to take a photo of him without the mask.

Thanks to his Spider-Sense, the hero immediately realised he had been followed, and he talked the kids out of it, even blocking Jason by webbing his feet to the floor. At that point, Jason was tired of the game already, but Sally insisted to keep following Spider-Man. Ironically, it was Jason, taking a picture of Spider-Man while he was about to be unmasked by Electro, the one who awoke the hero from the hypnosis he was victim of, allowing him to fight Electro…and to keep his mask on. As a reward, Spidey allowed the two kids to take a picture over the defeated criminal, becoming the idols of the school as it was published along with an article reading School Kids Foil Super-Villain. This was about the end of the story for Jason, who had obtained what he wanted (even Flash was jealous of him), but Sally wasn’t satisfied, she wanted more…and she eventually became the vigilante Bluebird, the self-appointed sidekick of Spider-Man. Not only Jason was worried for his friend, he was also deadly jealous of the hero, as Sally kept flirting with him. He begrudgingly accepted to help her, however, and he drove her from a city corner to the other, always on Spider-Man’s pursuit…until, one night, he sped through a red light to catch up with him, and was hit by another car. He emerged with a mild trauma from the incident, but Sally got killed. Depressed, Jason began to isolate himself from everyone, especially from his old friends, sick of Flash’s fanboy attitude towards Spider-Man, whom he now despised. His depression lasted years, with ups and downs, but eventually he decided to commit suicide, unable to cope with Sally’s death and with his own responsibility. He tried to jump from a building, but he was saved by the least likely of the saviors: the Vulture, who suggested him to stop blaming himself for his friend’s death…and to start blaming someone else, Spider-Man for example. Clearly incapable of confronting the hero on a physical level like Vulture, Jason accepted his advice nevertheless, and decided to destroy the reputation of the man who, to his eyes, had killed Sally: all he needed was a Spider-Man costume…

Jason Ionello is, and has always been, a frail young man, always relying on others to define himself, always dedicating all his energies and resources to impress other people. Either by being the school’s prankster or by turning into a vengeful depressed man, Jason always projects on others his fear of failing and his thirst for approval; there was only one true relationship in his life, unfortunately it was the one with Sally…

Surtur

One of the best surprises from the Comic-Con Thor: Ragnarok trailer was the fiery giant an angry Hulk attacks at the end of it…a fiery giant who answers to the name Surtur. His presence had been rumored for a while, but now we know that the ruler of the Fire Demons, voiced by Clancy Brown, will indeed appear alongside Hela in her campaign to destroy Asgard. In the comics, Surtur is indeed one of the gravest threats to Asgard and its inhabitants, and he has quite a pivotal role during Ragnarok…but he came close to destroy the gods even before, and many times. Let’s see together.

Surtur was an extremely ancient being, with only Ymir older than him in the Nine Realms; he was born in the depths of Muspelheim, a fiery dimension many cultures and traditions mistook for Hell…with a reason, actually. From him, both the Fire Demons and the Storm Giants took origin, and he ruled over Muspelheim with an iron fist and with one of the most powerful weapons in existence, the Twilight Sword, a weapon forged in the primeval fire, ignited by the mystical Eternal Flame. Always trying to set the entire universe ablaze, Surtur thrived on conflict and war, and when Odin, the king of the Aesir, declared war to the Vanir in an effort to unite the two peoples, Surtur offered his alliance to Freyr, Odin’s brother and the Vanir king. Surtur also made an alliance with the Trolls, and sent them against Asgard: Odin managed to defeat the alliance after years of fratricidal war, and he even managed to trick the Fire Demon, imprisoning him in Midgard under the Earth‘s surface. Humiliated and betrayed, Surtur swore his eternal enmity to Odin, and his hatred became even more legendary when it was prophesized that, during Ragnarok, he would have burnt to ashes the gates of Asgard and crossed the Bifrost, eventually destroying the city. To be sure that Surtur wasn’t able to ignite his Twilight Sword anymore, Odin stole the Eternal Flame, believing he had got ridden of one of his deadliest enemies…but his own family would have betrayed him. Centuries later, the usurper-wannabe Loki freed Surtur from his prison along with the Storm Giant Skagg to attack Earth, in an effort to kill his father and take his throne: Odin came to Midgard to face his old enemies, accompanied by his sons Thor and Balder. The fight was so violent that Odin transported all humans in another dimension not to kill them all, and the battle nearly costed the gods’ lives…but eventually Thor managed to use Odin’s sword to bind Surtur to a meteorite and to exile him in the void of space, just as he was about to melt the polar icecaps.

Surtur wandered in space for years, until the Sons of Satannish, a cult of black magic users, summoned him on Earth again along with Ymir using the forbidden Spell of Ice and Fire. The two giants started destroying the planet itself, each concentrating on a different area. Surtur attacked Antarctica, and he made short work of the Avengers who had come to stop him. When he was about to infert a deadly blow, however, Doctor Strange transported Ymir, who was about to do the same in Wakanda, just in front of him, so that the two monsters hit each other: the resulting energy apparently destroyed them both in a mystic explosion that nearly caused a cataclysm…but save the planet nevertheless. Actually exiled in his native Muspelheim, Surtur freed himself soon after, ready to burn Asgard to ashes: Loki, who had conquered the throne exploiting Odinsleep, fled in terror as the Fire Demon appeared at the city’s gates. Thor and the Warriors Three stepped in to face the monster, while Balder and Lady Sif embarked on a desperate mission to wake Odin up before it was too late. Not wanting the heroes from Earth to interfere in his plans again, Surtur sent his legions of Fire Demons on Midgard, while he defeated first the mighty Thor, than Odin himself, who was still too weak to face him. As he was about to deliver the finishing blow, however, Surtur found himself prisoner of an illusion: Loki had come back, and was aiding his father and brother to stop him. This gave Odin time enough to recover some strenght, and he regained power enough to open a dimensional drift and to send Surtur in it…falling along with him. In the following years, the two titans battled one with the other, until Odin was able to absorb Surtur’s essence, and to use his enemy’s magic power to come back to Asgard. Albeit sleeping, Surtur wasn’t vanquished yet, and he started taking possession of Odin’s body and conscience…until he manipulated the Alfather to create another body for him, resuming his old appearance and powers and resuming his mission of destroying Asgard. Even this time Thor, summing his power to Odin’s one, managed to banish the Fire Demon to the desolate Sea of Eternal Night, but Surtur would have come back again and again, until the very skies would have been on fire.

Surtur is one of the oldest beings in existence, a cunning warlord who possesses the wisdom of ancient times, and whose sole purpose of existence is to reduce the entire universe to a burnt wasteland. Malevolent and brutal, he possesses an incalculable strength, with a power said to be equal to a thousand blazing suns; he can create and manipulate fire at will, and his mere presence in Asgard is enough to increase the temperature in Midgard; being made of mystical flames he’s virtually invulnerable, and he can manipulate cosmic energy to fly, to teleport, to manipulate his own appearance and size; he’s also a master strategist and an invincible swordsman, who increases his battle prowess with his sharp horns and prehensile tail; his Twilight Sword is so powerful it can cut through dimensional barriers and reshape reality itself, and when united with the Eternal Flame it’s able to do pretty much anything. Just as powerful as he is vicious, Surtur is deadly and inevitable as a force of nature, living fire who craves to envelop everything, leaving only the ashes of a dead world behind.

Abraham Brown (Black Tiger)

We’re not even close to the end of the characters from Spider-Man: Homecoming, so we’ll alternate them with the others from Comic-Con. Next in line is another member of Midtown School for Science and Technology‘s decathlon team: Abe Brown, portrayed by Abraham Attah. In the movie, he’s the one who complains when Flash boasts about having a date with Black Widow (it was meant to be a joke, but Abe doesn’t seem so ready to catch it). This version of the character differs quite a lot from the original, who’s a badass martial artist definitely older than this teenager. Let’s see together.

Abraham Brown was born in HarlemNew York City, the son of the fighter “Tiger” Brown and of an unnamed woman. When he was still a kid, “Tiger” got killed, and his wife entered a deep depression that led her to alcoholism. Abe was supposed to take care of his little brother, Hobie Brown, since their mother clearly couldn’t, but he preferred to close the chapter of his ruined family and to walk away from them, taking his chances on the streets. Harlem, however, wasn’t exactly the safest place on Earth, and Abe soon became victim of a hate crime, being beaten nearly to death by a bunch of white racists. Not wanting to be anybody’s punching ball anymore, Abe resolved to learn martial arts, and he enlisted into Master Kee‘s school. Abe Brown learnt kung fu along with two other students, Lin Sun and Bob Diamond, and the three of them became friends. The three martial artists became truly close only when Master Kee was killed: as his pupils, they gathered in their master’s house, where Lin found a box with three jade tiger amulets. There was an inscription on the box, reading: “When three are called and stand as one, as one they’ll fight, their will be done. For each is born anew the Tiger’s Son“. Curious, the three took one amulet each…and they found out that, as long as they had it on them at the same time, their fighting skills and physical abilities were shared among them, making them formidable combatants with combined abilities. Wanting to use the amulets’ magic for a good purpose, they became the Sons of the Tiger, ready to fight for justice.

The Sons of the Tiger protected New York for a while, even teaming up with superheroes like Spider-Man or the Human Torch, but more often with other martial artists as Iron Fist and Shang Chi. Abe Brown was usually the voice of the reason in the group, acting as a field leader. Things were doing great, until Lin Sun started dating a girl, another martial artist named Lotus Shinchuko…who was loved by Bob Diamond as well. The tension excalated quickly, and not even Abe’s wisdom managed to mediate in the love triangle: the Sons of the Tiger ended quickly, with quite a grudge between at least two of the group’s members. They relinquished their amulets, and officially put an end to their friendship. Abe came back to Harlem and opened a martial arts school in which he taught freely to everyone who couldn’t afford a normal dojo (and who would have used wisely Abe’s teachings, of course), and he was soon reached by Lin Sun and Lotus, who he had remained in good relationship with. One day, while boarding to take a vacation to Casablanca, Abe met a woman, Brillalae, who had been hired by a tribe of bedouins looking for a replacement for their legendary protector, the Black Tiger. Without being noticed, Brillalae changed her suitcase, containing the Black Tiger costume, with Abe’s one. Brown’s plane was later hijacked by people after the costume, and crash-landed in a desert in Algeria. Abe was the only surviving passenger, and he pursued one of the hijackers, The Mole, who shot him…only to fall into a precipice as he shrank from him in fear after the martial artist stopped the bullet with his own hands. The Bedouines appeared, and named Abe the new Black Tiger: now, he had the chance to fight for justice once again.

Abe Brown is a wise and calm man, who found in the martial arts’ discipline the inner peace he had been looking for in his youth. As the Black Tiger, he’s an extremely skilled martial artist, who possesses skills enough to stop a bullet with his hands even without superhuman powers; when he owned the jade tiger medallion, it used to triplicate his strenght and ability. A loner since he experimented the failure of his group, Black Tiger is nevertheless bent on protecting the ones who are not able to defend themselves, either by teaching or by fighting for them in the first line…even by giving a chance to another group, the Penance Corps: whatever works in bringing security to the ghetto, is fine by him…