Countdown to Namor the First Mutant

#1 Posted by Rheged (605 posts) - - Show Bio

Namor the First Mutant is set to debut on August 25 -- three short weeks away! As a huge Namor fan, I'm beyond excited. Since I can't convince my local comic book shop to throw a party, I figured I'd make a few celebrations online with a countdown of favorites.

Stuart Moore in his latest interview mentioned keeping Namor in his X-men costume for his new ongoing book, in part because he thought it looked more regal.  Over the 70 years of his existence, Namor has worn a surprising number of costumes. Well, at least I was surprised at how many. While not completely up to date, you can see quite a few of them represented at this Micro-Heroes site. This might give a hint of my favorite Namor costume.

Besides the practicality of the swimming trunks, I think it says volumes of Namor's self confidence.  So, what's your favorite costume for Namor?
#2 Posted by Rheged (605 posts) - - Show Bio

One of the first comics that I read was Silver Age Sub-Mariner #3, written by Roy Thomas and drawn by John Buscema. While it wasn't the most significant Subby tale -- it was in fact the second half of a story -- it hooked me on Namor and comicbooks.

In case you haven't read it, Triton and Namor, in a Defiant Ones riff, were antagonists chained together, who had to work together to defeat Plant Man and stop his huge creature creation, called Leviathan, from doing a Godzilla number on London. I did say it wasn't the best comic book. What it did have was melodrama! And high fantasy! And melodrama! And thwarted romance! And melodrama! AND, a character unlike any one I had seen in the stack of comic books my friend's brother had given us. Here was a character that was honorable, but an enemy of other superheroes. Someone who had played the villain in other books! Someone with a really bad temper. 

So, was your first exposure to Namor? Or the Namor appearance that made you want to read more about him? 
#3 Posted by parasyteFMA (26 posts) - - Show Bio

I am very aware of Namor and I know a good bit about the character, but I haven't read anything with him in it. I am pretty excited for the 25th myself. A few of books come out that day that I'm looking forward to.

#4 Posted by Mainline (1072 posts) - - Show Bio

First by our time or first by their time because aren't there all sorts of ancient mutants in the MU like Selene, Apocalypse, the Xternals, etc.? 

#5 Posted by joshmightbe (24842 posts) - - Show Bio
@Mainline: he's the first in terms of being one of marvels first super powered characters in general i believe the only one before him was the original human torch
#6 Posted by Rheged (605 posts) - - Show Bio
@parasyteFMA:  I can't wait to see what they do with Namor this go around.  If you like silver age books, I highly recommend picking up the Marvel Masterworks Sub-Mariner #3, which has the wonderful Roy Thomas and John Buscema run in it.  If you like funny stories Defenders Indefensible is hilarious. 
@joshmightbe: Actually Namor predates the Human Torch by a few months.  He appeared in Motion Picture Funnies, which was supposed to be given out at movie theatres, but I don't think was widely circulated.  That story was repackaged, with a few more pages added and appeared in Marvel Comics #1, along with the first Human Torch story.
#7 Posted by joshmightbe (24842 posts) - - Show Bio
@Rheged: i always get those 2 mixed up, but technically yes namor is marvel's first mutant
#8 Posted by Rheged (605 posts) - - Show Bio
@joshmightbe: Well, it was a LOOOOONG time ago. :)
#9 Posted by Jake Fury (19940 posts) - - Show Bio

Trivia: Namor was the 1st superhero to ever fly.
#10 Edited by Rheged (605 posts) - - Show Bio
@Jake Fury:  Yes!  I didn't know that until a fellow fan told me recently.  I had mistakenly thought Superman could fly from his first appearance.  Cool bit of trivia!
#11 Edited by Rheged (605 posts) - - Show Bio

For a kingly character more used to giving orders than taking them, Namor has been on quite a few teams over the decades.  I vaguely remember reading a Golden Age book where he was supposedly in the USMC!  I'm not sure how that was supposed to work, but I'm just going to put it down to a Golden Age thing.  IIRC, Namor has been part of these groups.  Did I forget any?

  1. Invaders
  2. All Winners Squad
  3. Defenders
  4. Avengers
  5. Deep Six
  6. Fantastic Four
  7. New Invaders
  8.  Illuminati
  9. Cabal
  10. Dark X-Men
  11. X-Men
Oddly, I love the concept of the Invaders, but I didn't care for the original series, as I wasn't fond of the art.  But most of the modern revisits to the Invaders, I've really enjoyed.  Namor's presence on the Invaders also made the most sense to me, as he was a teenager, and not yet a ruler.  There was some great stuff going on with Namor during his time with his Avengers -- Marrina's fate, the arc with the Greek gods, and dealing with the public's opinion of Namor -- so that's another favorite team appearance of mine.  His inclusion in the Illuminati and Cabal was appropriate, and was mostly entertaining, though I kept waiting for the pay off with Namor and Doom on the Cabal that never arrived.  I'm conflicted about the whole X-Men scenario.  But the team I followed Namor on most closely was the Defenders.  The whole idea of a non-team suited Namor well.  And DeMatteis and Maguire's Defenders Indefensible was perfection!
Do you have a favorite team appearance by Namor?


#12 Posted by Mainline (1072 posts) - - Show Bio
@Jake Fury said:
" @Rheged: Trivia: Namor was the 1st superhero to ever fly. "
Not completely accurate.  He's the 1st superhero to fly in a comic book / on panel.  Superman beat him to the punch via radio (the medium in which he was popularized).  It is true, however, that Namor is depicted as flying first in the medium in which both of them were born.
#13 Posted by Jake Fury (19940 posts) - - Show Bio
@Mainline said:
" @Jake Fury said:
" @Rheged: Trivia: Namor was the 1st superhero to ever fly. "
Not completely accurate.  He's the 1st superhero to fly in a comic book / on panel.  Superman beat him to the punch via radio (the medium in which he was popularized).  It is true, however, that Namor is depicted as flying first in the medium in which both of them were born. "
Interesting. Thanks for the info. 
#14 Posted by Rheged (605 posts) - - Show Bio

Forget dehydration, Namor's real weakness is women.  Namor REALLY likes women.  And women REALLY like him.  In his books, you'll find lots of women -- ladies of his court, Nazi spies, police women, Communist spies, warriors, hippie girls, mermaids, empresses, queens, CEOs, scientists, the girl next door, and yes, even Aunt May!

He's been accused of a predilection for blondes, but as you can tell from my list, he's actually quite colorblind in his relationships.  He's like Captain Kirk, in that regard.  And then there's this attitude ... 

Here's a list o' ladies:
I think most folks favor the Invisible Woman as the love of Namor's life.  I strongly disagree with this, but will refrain from my usual rant.  My favorite romantic interest for Namor, and candidate for love of his life, is Lady Dorma.  She's been there since the beginning, appearing with him in Marvel Comics #1 back in 1939.  She was definitely old school, a grand dame in the tradition of actresses like Kate Hepburn, Betty Davis, Barbara Stanwyck, etc. but with the passion and sex appeal of Sophia Loren.  Dorma was a perfect match for Namor, though it took him a long time to accept that, and marry her.  And even though she loved Namor deeply, she wouldn't take any crap off him.  She also tended to deal with perceived rivals ... directly.  When she learned that Namor and Sue were attracted to each other, she shoved Sue out the airlock of their submersible ship!

My second favorite is Betty Dean, his Golden Age romantic interest, and his first real love,IMO.  My least favorite, is Marrina, Namor's second wife.  Who is your favorite romantic interest for Namor?
#15 Edited by Rheged (605 posts) - - Show Bio

Arguably, most the heroes of the Marvel U could land on Namor's List of Enemies. He's certainly fought most of them. However, I'm sticking to his Rogue's Gallery, the villains who just keep coming back to make his life miserable ... until they die. Sadly, except for Warlord Krang and Tiger Shark and maybe U-Man and Attuma, these characters are dead.  


 Paul Destine

 Prince Byrrah

Byrrah is Namor's oldest enemy, a Bill Everett creation from the Golden Age.  Warlord Krang was introduced in the Silver Age and his hatred of Namor involves a personal element, as he was a suitor of Lady Dorma's.  If it's underwater intrigue and political maneuvering, these two aristocrats will be in the mix. U-Man did not appear in any Golden Age books, but he was retconned into WWII as an Invaders foe. I'm not sure if he's dead or alive, however -- anyone know? I never thought much of Attuma until Frank Tieri's recent Made Men story. Now, I'm curious to see if he is indeed resurrected, and if some writer will build on that and make him more than just a two dimensional,barbarian invader. Paul Destine is responsible for the death of his mother and grandfather, the destruction of polar Atlantis, and Namor's first bout of amnesia. But ironically, Namor would not have existed, except for him and his Antarctic quest for the Helmet of Power, aka the Serpent Crown.

Sorcerer King Suma Ket and his lady, Artys Gran, have only appeared in one arc, but they definitely made an impression and inflicted a high body count -- I think they may be the only villains that have killed Namor. Except for a brief stint in the 90s, the villain with the most unrealized potential, has to be Tiger Shark. Created from Namor's own DNA, with a similar power set of abilities, he should have been the dark reflection of Namor. Instead, he's just crazy muscle with sharp teeth. 
 But my favorite villain is Llyra. She killed Namora, Lady Dorma and Leonard MacKenzie, taking away Namor's kingdom and memory, just for starters. And all because he wouldn't be seduced by her and make her his bride. She also created / birthed Llyron, who went on to cause Namor no end of trouble before dying. Did I miss anyone? Do you have a favorite foe of Namor's? 
#16 Posted by MichaeltheFly (6555 posts) - - Show Bio

Nice, I see you like Namor a lot, I will check it out.

#17 Edited by Rheged (605 posts) - - Show Bio

This was a tough category, as between being a prince and being ... prickly, I don't think Namor has many friends.  I left out any Atlanteans or relatives or dead characters like Betty Dean.  Also, Sub-Mariner the Initiative revealed just how few of his alleged allies he could count on.  But these are the folks I think who would go out of their way to help Namor, and that he would do the same for.


 Tamara Rahn

 Jim Hammond

 Bucky Barnes



It should come as no surprise that half the names on the list are Invaders.  These were the friends he made in his youth and that share the bond of comrades in arms.  The alliances with Stingray and Tamara are a bit more complicated, as they both have a more personal connection to Namor.  Stingray's wife, Diane Arliss Newell, was once in love with Namor, as was Tamara.

Now, I know some folks wouldn't include Doctor Doom, because it always ends in betrayal with him.  And while not a friend, he's definitely been an ally.  In most of their alliances, both of them walk away with something they wanted from the other.  Doom is like the local loan shark -- when all else fails, Namor knows he can go to him.  And Namor is the only character that Doom repeatedly seeks an alliance with -- for reasons I'm not sure he's completely aware of.  And yes, of all these allies, my favorite is Doctor Doom.  Any suggestions for a better, or more entertaining ally?  A more loyal friend?
#18 Posted by Rheged (605 posts) - - Show Bio

Okay, this is even harder than yesterday's post. For the purposes of this list, I'm not considering Namor's friends so much, but other male characters that I'd love to see with Namor in a team-up / buddy book. So, it's not necessary that these characters get along with Namor. In fact, if they don't, even better for the conflict and comedy.

BLAZING SKULL -- His appearances in the New Invaders had me smiling and LOL!

DOCTOR DOOM -- besides the obvious classic Super Villain Team Up issues, just consider this hilarious fumetti with action figures at Random Happenstance.

BUCKY CAP -- this or their team up from the Man Without a Face arc in Cap.


HERCULES -- this or Pak and Van Lente's Love and War arc.

(Thanks to Not_Your on the board for the scan and reminding me of how cool this team-up was.)

I really can't pick a favorite among these. I'd be thrilled to see any of them. For a bromance ... Is there anyone other than his Golden Age buddies, Cap and the Human Torch? I don't think so. I'm sure I left out some other great candidates, even ones that have never met Namor, so post any that you'd like to see.

#19 Posted by Icarusflies (12522 posts) - - Show Bio

C-c-combo breaker!!

#20 Posted by Rheged (605 posts) - - Show Bio

Thank you! :)
There's been some speculation that Namor would be in the upcoming Captain America movie.  He's also had a solo flick in development heck at Universal for a decade - with a script by David Self that I'd kill to read!  So, there's been several actors names bandied about over the years:

And plenty of fan casts:
To which I'll add my two picks:
MANU BENNETT  -- who clearly has no problem with the attitude or the speedo costume. :)

#21 Posted by Rheged (605 posts) - - Show Bio

13  DAYS TO GO! 
The Namor I grew up with and know best is from the Silver and Bronze Age.  But recently I've learned the joy of Golden Age Namor, who is a slightly different fellow.  Oh, he would still lose his temper and invade NYC at the drop of a hat.  But he also wore alot more clothes in some stories.

 And some of it was kind of hokey to our modern eyes, but fun. If you've never read any Golden Age Namor, I highly recommend this gem of a reprint book.  It's filled with sleek Bill Everett art -- some think his best work -- that isn't as different to the eye as the older 40's issues.  Though it has a more pulp / 50s B-movie feel, than super-hero adventures.  In fact, Namor fights a monster that looks suspiciously like the Creature from the Black Lagoon.  Plus, it features some wonderful Tales of Young Namor, torn from his own journal.  One of them tells of the first time his ankle wings appear.
If you are already a Golden Age fan, what do you like most about it?
#22 Posted by crabtree (1613 posts) - - Show Bio

damn i guess u do like him

#23 Posted by Rheged (605 posts) - - Show Bio

LOL!  You're too kind.  Most of my friends, and not friends, say ... other things. :)   Will be playing catch up, in part because of the twofer posts.
Here's an area I'm hoping Stuart Moore will be filling in again for us. Back in the early Silver Age, Stan Lee and Roy Thomas gave us a plentiful, if oddly named, supporting cast for Namor among his own Atlanteans. Sadly, I think this list has been somewhat decimated. I'm hoping that Vashti is still alive! He's definitely one of my favorites. I always saw him as sort of long suffering Albert / father figure to Namor. Here's a quick run down of a the Silver Age Atlanteans.
Speaking of the Golden Age ... it was a time when Namor abandoned stately cries of Imperius Rex! and spoke in the vernacular. Great Pickled Penguins! Check out some of these exclamations!!!

Comics Make No Sense: Galloping Guppies! and Holy Haddock!

#24 Edited by Rheged (605 posts) - - Show Bio

 If you not as enamored of Namor as I am, and you want to catch up on his story before the new ongoing debuts, the quickest way to do so is with some books.  Sadly, many of his comics aren't collected ... yet.  The John Bryne and Jae Lee Namor run from the 1990s, for example.  But here's a few to get you started.

NAMOR ALL NAMOR - The Essentials

Essential Sub-Mariner (basically reprints Marvel Masterworks Sub-Mariner 1 & 2 in black and white in trade)
Marvel Masterworks Sub-Mariner 1 (Collects Marvel Comics #1, Daredevil #7, Tales to Astonish #70-87)
Marvel Masterworks Sub-Mariner 2 (Collects Tales to Astonish #88-101, Tales of Suspense #80, Iron Man & Sub Mariner #1, and Sub-Mariner #1.)
Marvel Masterworks Sub-Mariner 3  (Collects Sub-Mariner #2-13)
Sub-Mariner Revolution (Collects Sub-Mariner Initiative #1-6)

Marvel Masterworks Atlas Heroes 3  (Collects Atlas Sub-Mariner #33-42)
Marvel Masterworks Golden Age Sub-Mariner 1
Marvel Masterworks Golden Age Sub-Mariner 2
Marvel Masterworks Golden Age Sub-Mariner 3
Golden Age Marvel Comics Omnibus  (Collects Marvel Comics #1, and Marvel Mystery Comics #2-12)

Defenders Indefensible (Collects Defenders Mini-series #1-5)
Essential Super Villain Team-Up  (Collects Astonishing Tales #1-8, Avengers #154-156, Champions #16 and Super-Villain Team-Up issues #1-17 in black and white)


Marvel Masterworks Defenders (Collects Sub-Mariner #34-35, Marvel Feature #1-3, Defenders #1-6)
Essential Defenders 1
  (Collects Dr. Strange #183, Sub-Mariner #22 and 34-35, Incredible Hulk #126, Marvel Feature #1-3, Defenders #1-14, and Avengers #115-118 in black and white)
Avengers Defenders War
Invaders Classic 1  (Collects Invaders #1-9, Giant-Size Invaders (1975) #1, and Marvel Premiere #29-30)
Invaders Classic 2  (Collects Invaders #10-21 and Annual #1)
Invaders Classic 3  (Collects Invaders #22-23 and #25-34)
Invaders Classic 4  (Collects Invaders #35-41 and Invaders 1993 #1-4)
Once an Invader
New Invaders to End All Wars  (Collects New Invaders #1-9 )
Invaders Eve of Destruction (Collects Marvel Universe #1-7)
Avengers / Invaders
Marvel 70th Anniversary Collection


Marvel Masterworks Atlas Heroes 1
Marvel Masterworks Atlas Heroes 2  
Fantastic Four Omnibus 1  (Fantastic Four - issues #1-30 and Annual #1)
Ultimate Fantastic Four 5: Crossover (Collects Ultimate Fantastic Four #21-26)
Ultimate Fantastic Four 11:  Salem Seven  (Collects Ultimate Fantastic Four #54-57)
Captain America The Man With No Face (Collects Captain America #43-48)
Incredible Hercules Love and War  (Collects Incredible Hercules #121-125)
Agents of Atlas 2: Turf Wars  ( Collects Agents of Atlas #6-11, and X-Men vs. Agents of Atlas #1-2)
Marvel Masterworks Golden Age Human Torch 2 (Collects Human Torch 5b-8)
Sub-Mariner the Depths  
Every character has a special writer that puts their stamp on him and that fans associate with him.  Or perhaps, it is the other way around, every writer has a character that is a favorite, and that they spend that extra effort on.  Namor, has had at least four, IMO.
BILL EVERETT was Namor's creator, and was both the writer and artist in the Golden Age.  He was a comic legend whose work consisted of an amazing variety of titles and genres.  Yet, Namor was the character he kept returning to and producing gorgeous art and entertaining stories.
STAN LEE was responsible for one the first revamps and retcons when he brought a more formal and melodramatic Namor into the Silver Age.  He placed Namor in a fantasy setting by writing stories set in Namor's underwater kingdom of Atlantis.
ROY THOMAS is a self admitted fan of Golden Age Namor, and during his run, he fleshed out Silver Age Namor's setting, rogue's gallery, supporting cast, and allies, all while making the character more complex with inner conflicts, love triangles, tragic losses, and something of an environmental conscience.

JOHN BYRNE is clearly another fan, and in the tradition of Everett, was both writer and artist on Namor's book.  He took a different spin on Namor when he made him CEO of Oracle, and a corporate superhero, and for the most part, kept his adventures above the waves.
Many other writers worked on Namor's books over the last 70 years, including Gerry Conway and Bob Harras (whose stories Jae Lee drew), but in the '00s few have had an opportunity to portray Namor in a run of books dedicated to the character -- only Matt Cherniss and Peter Johnson on Sub-Mariner Revolution and Andi Watson on the Tsunami imprint Namor.  So, I'm at a loss to pick a favorite modern writer of Namor.  Bill Everett and Roy Thomas remain my favorite writers of the prickly prince.  Do you have a favorite, either modern or old school?
#25 Posted by EdwardWindsor (14346 posts) - - Show Bio

9 now lol

#26 Edited by Rheged (605 posts) - - Show Bio

Yes!  Thank you!  Almost caught up...
Over the decades, there have been a ton of covers featuring Namor, so I have a hard time picking one favorite. But here are a few from his own books!  Do you have any favorites?


You might have noticed that I tried to post a cover from each of Namor's series in my last Countdown post.  I missed the ones below with an asterisk.  So, of course, my question for today is, which is your favorite series?

Golden Age Sub-Mariner
Atlas Sub-Mariner
Tales to Astonish*
Super-Villain Team-Up*
Prince Namor the Sub-Mariner
Saga of the Sub-Mariner*
Namor the Sub-Mariner
Tsunami Namor
Sub-Mariner the Initiative
Sub-Mariner the Depths*

Another difficult choice, but I'm going to have to go with the Silver Age Sub-Mariner series.  I don't think that's just nostalgia, either.  Re-reading some of these issues lately, I still find myself swept up in the stories and the art.  Great stuff!
#27 Edited by Rheged (605 posts) - - Show Bio

Looking at all the wonderful cover art, reminded me of the many artists that have drawn Namor. Since the character has been around for so long, more artists than you would think. Here are a few pieces I was surprised to discover the artist.

ADAM HUGHES ================================================== JIM LEE

MIKE MIGNOLA & P CRAIG RUSSELL =================================== JIM STERANKO

But I have to say, my favorite Namor artists are, once again, John Buscema and Jae Lee's Namor from the Inhumans and Fantastic Four 1234. Do you have a favorite Namor artist? Or find someone you didn't expect doing the art chores on a Namor book?

Enough of the beauty, now for the beast. When Namor first appeared as Bill Everett's 'ultraman of the deep,' he had a certain set of powers. He was super humanly strong and fast, he could breathe air and water, he could fly and he could communicate via telepathy. Over the decades more powers were added. And this was the first.

Yep. Namor had his own personal sprinkler system! I'm not even going to attempt to explain how that might work.

"Possessing the powers of all the creatures who live beneath the sea" also enabled Namor to absorb lethal amounts of electricity, as he did in Daredevil #7 and Fantastic Four #6 (where he also could play leapfrog with meteors and endure the vaccum of space without a space suit.) 

With this power, Namor outdoes Aquaman twice over! Not only can he command sea animals, but sea PLANTS, too! Plus, Namor can suck the life force from anything living in the sea?! Namor, Ocean Vampire! Of course, one wonders why he didn't use this handy power against Attuma, Krang or Tiger Shark.

Namor has always been a fast swimmer, but here it's beyond human or Atlantean speeds. I always felt that writers (and the VS. fans) didn't translate this amazing speed to his surface encounters accurately. If Namor could move this fast against the thickness of a water atmosphere, he should have lightning quick speed and reflexes in the thinner atmosphere of simply air. Namor could adapt this power, however, by spinning fast enough to become a HUMAN DRILL!

You may notice that most of these panels are by Jack Kirby, and thus came from stories written by Stan Lee. I think he may have gotten a little carried away when he brought Namor into the Silver Age, and most of these new powers were never used again. And I believe, somewhere, they just come out and say Namor lost the aquatic mimicry powers. While I don't recall seeing him use telepathy in modern comics, the power still appears on recent trading card sets.

However, even now, writers keep adding a few here and there. Namor apparently has a healing factor, that not only allows him to heal incredibly quickly, but also not scar. He's been cut up several times by Wolverine, including getting stuck with his claws, but shrugged off the injuries and continued to wear the body flaunting speedo. And recently, in the Torch mini-series, I learned that Namor's skin is fireproof!

Of these, my odd power for Namor is either his Personal Internal Sprinkler System or his amazing Pufferfish impression!  I'm sure I've left out some, so feel free to post your favorite odd power for Namor ... or break my two consecutive posts, please.  Darn annoying feature when you are trying to post daily. :(

#28 Posted by Asgardian Hulk (76 posts) - - Show Bio

I hope this book is great. Namor should have a good ongoing by now.
#29 Posted by gambit987 (1273 posts) - - Show Bio

wow, you are a big fan.

#30 Edited by Rheged (605 posts) - - Show Bio

Why thank you. :)  He's my favorite character, and why I'm into comics.  And thanks for breaking my twofer posts!
Just because Namor fans aren't as vocal as some others, doesn't mean there aren't plenty of them out there. Trust me. I've bid against enough of them on eBay to know they are out there. :( And usually, I'm bidding on fan art. I'm always happy to discover an artist who chooses to portray Namor, instead of a certain green and orange clad water breather.

Oddly, I don't see alot of Namor fanfiction. I'm not sure if that is a good thing or a bad thing. Most of what I've seen is 2-D pin ups. But on occasion, I'll stumble cross something like humorous, like the action figure fumetti that I posted previous, or this gem by Evan Dorkin, The Haiku of the Ancient Sub-Mariner.

And here's one of several pieces of sculpture I've seen, this one done by Edinho Magha.

But this is my current favorite piece, a commission done by a fellow Namor fan, Mel Uran.
Some new information about the first issue!  It appears there will be a back up feature in the book!  Keith Garcia will be writing, I believe, stories retelling Namor's life, but from Namora's point of view!  Here's the pertinent part of the article I found in the Brownsville Herald.  So, we'll be getting a little extra for the extra price.

The contribution made by Garcia will be added at the end of the comic book series and will chronicle the life of Namor through the eyes of Namora, a female version of the Atlantean hero, who has had a lifelong crush on him.

"They have never been a couple," Garcia said. "They did kiss once but that was it."

Garcia’s chronicle of Namor’s life will include tales of his regular switching from superhero to super-villain. According to Garcia, Namor is a temperamental character capable of conquering a country one day and changing his mind the next to fight evil.

#31 Posted by Rheged (605 posts) - - Show Bio

One of the cool things about Namor is that he can fit a variety of genres and play a variety of roles.  Over the decades he has been:

The Pulp Hero -- Mainly Namor's stories from the 50s, when he was more of a sleuth, investigating the weird staples of the era like giant monsters, space aliens, robots, and ghosts.  And the not so weird staples like gangsters and spies -- all with his Girl Friday, Betty Dean.

The Super-Hero -- Avenger, Defender, Invaders ... generally speaking, Namor usually acts like a typical superhero when he's on a team.  Usually.

The Fantasy Hero -- aka Chosen One.  In some ways, Namor's a sea elf with an attitude.  And a culture that includes Neptune and Hyborean Age roots, is a culture of magic and myth -- despite their scientific advances.  Namor has been the subject prophecy and been chosen by Neptune himself for various tasks, including the Quest for the Sacred Trident, taking on Suma Ket, and fighting the gods themselves.

The Byronic Hero -- Tragedy and Temper!  Passion and Peril!  Emotions to Excess!  Part and parcel of ...

The Ladies Man  -- There's alot of women in Namor's life.

The War Hero -- aka the Patriot.  Namor is just as patriotic as Captain America ... it's just that his country doesn't happen to be the United States, and so arises conflict and his role as ...

The Anti-Hero -- More often than not, Namor is in opposition to most the heroes of the Marvel Universe.  His goals and and reasons are different, but not usually selfish.

The Villain -- often confused with the Anti-Hero, but this is the Namor who tried to kill the FF with his ally Doctor Doom.

The Brawler -- While he has a variety of skills, resources, and superpowers available to him, often it seems Namor prefers to just open up a can of Imperius Rex on his problems and foes.

The Environmentalist -- This is the Namor that really makes us feel bad for being such unreasoning, uncaring, wasteful polluters of the world.  :frown:

The CEO  -- When Namor solves his problems with a ton of cash -- like with his company Oracle or his movie studio.

The Statesman -- I think this is Namor's least favorite role.  Not only when he has to deal with pretenders to his throne and politics of Atlantis, but also when he deals with various surface world nations, like Mazikhandar and the UN.

The Snarkmeister -- aka the Reader's Voice.  Bendis likes to use Namor like this often.  Not only does he say what every other character wishes he could ("Why would you sleep with a woman who looks like Doctor Doom?"), but he is also the one that asks the Reader's questions about plot holes and other odd actions.  It's also the Ugly Truth Namor, which doesn't win him many friends or admirers, but kept him out of World War Hulk.

I'm not sure I could pick a favorite role or genre for Namor.  The variety is what makes him complex and interesting to me.

#32 Posted by kevingarcia (2 posts) - - Show Bio
Yeah, about that... the article had some problems... ran the wrong cover, mis-spelled Sub-Mariner, etc. ... Also it didn't make it clear. It's not a "back-up" with penciler or anything, it's just a saga-style history with images of Namor's life. 
I agreed to the article to help promote the local comic shop... and on that front it seems to have worked, as people have told me they want to go to the store, or didn't realize it existed.
#33 Posted by Rheged (605 posts) - - Show Bio

That's cool.  It's still a back-up of sorts, and I think that will actually be quite helpful for readers not as familiar with Namor, and I'm still looking forward to seeing the story told from Namora's pov.  Thanks for the info!

#34 Posted by Rheged (605 posts) - - Show Bio

I am often asked "WHY do you like Namor?" I would hope these posts would make it clear. Namor is one of the more complex characters in the Marvel Universe, a character that forces the reader to consider the other side of the story. I don't think I'm exaggerating, when I say he's unique. Even today, he can play both the villain and the hero, as witnessed by his membership in both the Illuminati and the Cabal. He has some real flaws, unlikeable flaws -- that he has not the slightest inclination of changing. I find all of that makes for an interesting character. But on a personal level, Namor is my favorite character because:

1) Sub-Mariner #3 was one of the first comics I read, a long time ago, and what got me into comics.

2) Back then, there was very little in comics for girls like myself. But the first female comic book creator I saw was in Namor's book -- Marie Severin.
And Namor was a character who has been molded by the women in his life. His greatest allies and enemies were women -- strong, proactive, and downright aggressive women. He was raised by a single parent, his mother. He didn't have a male sidekick, like Torch or Cap, but female companions, like Betty Dean and Namora. His greatest enemy was Llyra. In his stories, things happened, because of women. And to this day, I can't recall a comic book like Sub-Mariner #8.

Here, Namor takes his wounded lover, Lady Dorma, to the apartment of Diane Arliss, a woman he shares an attraction with, and confesses his love for an old flame, Betty Dean! No wonder he's volunteering advice to Reed Richards on his relationship with Sue. :)

And this issue ends in great fashion with Beauty, a much older Betty Dean, once again calming the Beast, and saving the day. Still one of the most touching endings I've read.

3) I also identified with Namor, because he was the only comic book character I knew of that had parents from two different races. And unlike Aquaman, Namor couldn't 'pass' in either culture. The problems that caused him very much resonated with me, then and now, as someone who is half Asian and half Caucasian.

4) And of course, there's the Speedo.  
And that ends the Countdown to Namor the First Mutant. Thank you for listening to me ramble on and on, and for the folks that replied and broke up my posts, so I could finish this. And I hope everyone at least takes a look at the new ongoing for Marvel's oldest super-hero. 

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