By fodigg 9 Comments
I'm a fan of Dr Hank Pym. Over the years he's saved the world countless times since he helped form the original Avengers (and later the West Coast Avengers), and yet his inventions and uncontrolled impulses have also put the world and his loved ones in danger—most famously when he commited a double-whammy by inventing an evil robot (something he's known for) and back-handing his then-wife the Wasp across the room. Lately he's refurbished his reputation a bit. He's stayed in control, had a few positive and semi-successful romantic relationships, kept the Wasp's soul/mind in a hyper-scientific state of life support (and thus far resisted the temptation to rush any attempts at reviving her), and he's become a role model for the kids at Avengers Academy. That's all very nice and all incredibly boring. I think it's time for another mental break for good ol' Dr. Pym.
- Naturally kind, Pym is a pacifist who is obsessed with finding better ways to rehabilitate criminals. He's not normally reckless or quick to anger.
- Incredibly intelligent scientist and inventor, Pym's superpower is that he invents superpowers. In this sense he lives up to his unofficial title as the Scientist Supreme.
- Unfortunately, Pym suffers from crippling psychological problems and needs to be monitored and medicated to maintain his genteel and altruistic personality. When unmedicated, he suffers from extreme paranoia, behaves irrationally and sometimes violently, and at least once invented an alternate "action hero" personality in place of his normal one. Not only suffering from paranoia during these episodes, Pym also becomes obsessed with proving himself—as an inventor, as a hero, as a man. It's a volatile mix.
Hank Pym's medication suddenly stops being effective. As his mental state deteriorates, he simultaneously seeks an effective replacement (to no avail) and begins "Pym proofing" his life, trying to mitigate any damage he could do un-medicated. True to classic Pym form, however, he does NOT seek help from anyone else, and when his mental state finally starts to slip, he's on his own—a mad scientist supreme, addicted to wild invention. He's a hero trapped in the body of a mad scientist.
- Hallucinatory versions of Pym: All the various costumes and names he's taken over the years appear to help, antagonize, confuse, or otherwise interact with him.
- Jocasta: A robot version of Pym's dead wife, created by Ultron, she's currently at odds with Pym but recognizes that something isn't right and begins to investigate.
- Tigra: Love interest and mother of Pym's sort-of child, Pym worries that his darker impulses will draw him toward her and harm her.
- Various villains & heroes: During his lucid moments, Pym tries to keep himself contained and work on effective medication, but while he's out of it he goes out and plays hero, bumping into various villains and heroes as he does so.
- Opening line: "My name is Hank Pym, I'm an Avenger, and I've been unmedicated for twelve days."
- "Pym proofing": Pym is locking up dangerous experiments and leaving admonishing notes to himself: Do NOT build robots. Do NOT call Tigra. Do NOT supervise children. Do NOT "show them." Do NOT "show them all."
- Suspicion by other heroes: Jocasta tries to check up on him. Eventually, Tigra does as well when she realizes he's ignoring her. Their inquiries start as polite and concerned, but Pym tries to deflect them and behave as if everything is fine. When their suspicions are later confirmed, their concern turns toward alarm as they know what Pym is capable of.
- Pym's "Yellowjacket" persona—in form of hallucination—taunts him and tries to prove he's better than him. This leads to a contest of wills and them leaving deadly and inventive traps for each other while they're in control.
- Pym creates new and unstable inventions and superpowers wildly during his adventures, sometimes more of a hazard than the villains he's fighting.
- Pym retreats to the microverse and goes crazy on everyone.
- Pym tries to recreate the Infinite Mansion and instead unleashes various alternate realities into his home, so everytime he opens a door in his own house he's never sure what's behind it.
- Pym starts to dress himself in an amalgam of his various costumes: Ant-Man helmet, Giant-Man shirt, Yellowjacket shoulder fins, Wasp coat, "Dr. Pym" red cargo pants, etc.
- A version of Ultron appears and tries to take advantage of Pym's mental state. Pym ultimately stomps him hard with insane inventiveness and unpredictability.
Why I'd like to see it:
I can't help but feel like ol' Pym is underutilized. He was a founding Avenger and has created more spinoff characters than any other one character in the Marvel universe (although the Hulk is giving him a run for his money these days). You could fill out a whole Avengers team with just his superpowered progeny, and yet he's kind of looked over. It seemed like they were going to finally do something with him when he took over leadership of the Mighty Avengers, but that puttered out and he was left baby-sitting in the pages of Avengers Academy, which is lame because as the "instructor" character he can't really do much in that book—the students have to be the ones who save the day. I say break him out of that and embrace the various aspects of the character, especially what makes him unique compared to any of the other super-scientists in the Marvel universe—he's crazy. I think that'd be entertaining to explore. And as long as you don't totally abandon the core of the character—portray him as dangerous because he's behaving recklessly, not that he's evil—it shouldn't damage the character long-term.