Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Tuesday Tangent: The League of Extraordinary Gentlemen - 1970s Style

I had so much fun putting together the 1980s League, I decided to do the same with the 70s.. the era of really, really bad fashion and disco music. I should point out that there are a few rules I am applying to the selection of these members:

1) The characters can't be a big/regular part of an established comic book universe- otherwise, I could just pick the Justice League and be done with it. The same is not necessarily true for characters from older comic strips. Nor does it apply to properties that were later turned into comic books.

2) I reserve the right to alter the background of such characters a little to fit my particular 'shared' universe or in order to 'resurrect' them from a scripted death.

Those 'ground rules' having been laid, on with the matter at hand. Here they are, then, your League of Extraordinary Gentlemen, 1970s.

Steve Austin (played by Lee Majors)

A pilot and former astronaut, Steve was gravely injured in the test flight of an experimental space plane. He was rebuilt by the government using experimental bionic components and was subsequently employed by a shadowy agency to right various wrongs around the globe. This 'bionic man', would serve as the leader of this team due to his military and command experience. His enhanced abilities would be a great asset in League field operations.

Lee (played by Bruce Lee)

A martial arts master and monk from China, Lee is one of the most capable fighters in the world. In addition, he is a philosopher and scholar of many ancient secrets of his order which may very well have applications in supernatural operations. Only his rather solitary and introspective nature prevent Lee from being chosen as team leader. Even so, he would work well as an advisor and second in command.

Foxy Brown (played by Pam Greer)

A nurse turned private investigator (after the death of her boyfriend at the hands of ruthless vice lords). Foxy single-handedly brought down an entire syndicate and in the process became a capable and fearless investigator and combatant. She is particularly skilled at undercover work (no pun or entendre intended) and would make an excellent information gatherer for her team in the field. Though smart and independent, Foxy has developed a rather ruthless streak when it comes to dealing with 'bad people'- a streak that could put her at odds with more idealistic team members.

Carl Kolchak (played by Darren McGavin)

A seemingly odd choice at first, this freelance reporter has lately come to specialize in occult cases- the most notable of which saw him tracking down and destroying a Vampire 'serial killer'. Though he is at best a 'passable' combatant, Kolchak's investigative abilities and first-hand experience with various paranormal incidents would make him a valuable member of the team. Carl is likely to be a reluctant team member, seeing himself as 'just a reporter'- however, his steadfast courage and calm in the face of true horror is a rarity- and a great asset.

Mark Harris aka "The Man from Atlantis" (played by Patrick Duffy)

The origins of this mysterious individual are unknown- though some theorize that he is the last surviving member of an extinct aquatic species- perhaps descendents of the Atlanteans of legend. Apart from his ability to breathe underwater, he is incredibly strong and resilient, capable of operating at great depths and swimming at incredible speeds with webbed fingers and toes. Suffering from amnesia, Mark (his adopted name) is something of a blank slate, learning all he can about a world he is completely unfamiliar with. Though he must return to water at regular intervals, Mark's exceptional abilities would make him an asset on just about any League mission.

Backup Members

The following individuals were considered for recruitment, but were passed over for one reason or another (typically that their area of expertise overlapped another member's).

Father Merrin (played by Max Von Sydow)

An aging, but incredibly dedicated catholic priest. Father Merrin is one of the Church's premier experts in the field of the occult in general and exorcism in particular. His age and failing health were the primary reason Father Merrin was not chosen for the team. He is to be considered as an information asset, however- though he is currently engaged in a mission in Washington, DC...

Jaime Sommers (played by Lindsay Wagner)

A 'bionic woman', rebuilt by the same organization as Steve Austin. Ms. Sommers is currently engaged in missions for that organization, but could be called upon if the team found itself in need. Her powers easily match those of Col. Austin.

John Shaft (played by Richard Roundtree)

A former police officer turned private investigator. Shaft currently works in New York City, and has become something of a legend there for standing up to various underworld figures as well as corrupt city politicians and police officials. His independent nature and distaste for authority (and even teamwork) was the primary reason he was excluded from recruitment.

Harry Calahan (played by Clint Eastwood)

An infamous police detective operating out of San Francisco. "Dirty" Harry Calahan has made a reputation for a particularly 'direct' form of police work that often makes use of his signature .44 magnum handgun. As with others on the 'standby' list, Harry was excluded from recruitment mainly due to his dislike of working with others.

Gator McKlusky (played by Burt Reynolds)

A moonshiner and smuggler operating out of the south (from Texas to Florida). Gator is an expert driver and capable boat-handler. He is also something of a show-off and has a distinct lack of regard for the law. While not a 'ruthless criminal' by any means, his nature prevented him from making it onto the recruitment list. He could still be considered for individual operations where skilled road or aquatic travel is required.

James Rockford (played by James Garner)

A hardbitten private detective operating out of Los Angeles. Rockford is a highly capable investigator and even hand-to-hand combatant- but he often finds himself battered and bruised in the course of his work. Indeed, he does seem to have a kind of 'hard luck' that some occultists theorize may actually have supernatural origins. Needless to say, 'bad luck' is not something a field team needs.

Tertiary Possibilities

These are other names that came up, but were disregarded for various reasons:

Jill Munroe, Sabrina Duncan, Kelly Garrett (played by Farrah Fawcett, Kate Jackson, Jaclyn Smith) - Aka "Charlies Angels"

Leann "Pepper" Anderson (played by Angie Dickinson) - Aka Police Woman

Theo Kojak (played by Telly Savalas)

Columbo (played by Peter Falk)

Dr. Quincy (played by Jack Klugman) - Aka Quincy, M.E.

No comments:

Post a Comment