Friday, October 30, 2009

I would've bought "Son of Say Ten," but I'm a big Orbital fan...

Even though it's not a character I have a lot of affection for, I have to admit the Son of Satan does on occasion bring a rocking visual. The cover of his first issue, for example, is just begging to be painted Frazetta-style on a van, or a death metal album cover circa 1988.
Where bad horses go when they die.
Even though I've seen him in Defenders and in his more-Vertigo styled Hellstrom; I don't know that I've ever seen Daimon use the chariot for anything other than mere transport: Daimon needs to get to Arizona, takes the chariot. Daimon needs to get back to New York, takes the chariot. Sure, that gets you a few panels of flaming-steed action per issue, but there should be more action. Like Daimon fighting a giant Shuma-Gorath rising from the ocean, blasting hellfire out of his trident, the giant squid's terrible eye blasting death at the hero...

More Satan after the break!

So, if I were writing another try at a Son of Satan series, not only would I make the artist do most of the heavy lifting; I also wouldn't try to follow or top the horror aspect of Hellstrom. I couldn't beat Warren Ellis and Leonardo Manco at their own game. Likewise, I would avoid the trap of his earliest issues: fighting with his father, over and over...at least directly.
The Black Knight seems to fall into this as well: a flying horse that may as well be mass transit.
I would have Daimon rebel against his father, of course; like all children. And how would Daimon rebel against the prince of lies and darkness? By becoming a superhero; moreover, by becoming an incredibly clean-cut, pleasant, and noble one. Daimon would still be tormented by his inner darkness, and afraid of what might happen if he let it come out; and would fight that be being the closest thing to Superman the Marvel Universe has ever seen...even with a trident and hell-horses. I'd play him as much squarer than he actually is; but he would be trying to be square. So, if you can picture this barechested wildman, with a trident and flaming steeds, trying to ernestly and unironically give G.I. Joe style PSA's to confused children; that's where I'd take that. He would have a booming, distorted voice, and be channelling 100% pure unleaded evil, to rescue kittens and feed the homeless.

The credits box of this issue proclaims: "Beginning: A new chapter in the ever-changing life of Daimon Hellstrom" and they're on the nose with the ever-changing part. Sometimes, he's the Son of Satan, sometimes the Son of Marduk Kurios, sometime the Son of Satannish (grandson of Dormammu!), and on one memorable occasion, the Son of Stan. (I tried like hell, as it were, to find that one, but I don't have it here!...after I went through about twenty boxes.)

Panels from the Son of Satan #1, "Homecoming!" Written by John Warner, art by Jim Mooney, cover by Gil Kane and Mike Esposito. I probably would've been denied a lifetime of comics, if my mom had seen that cover in 1975. (Actually, Mom probably would've clicked her tongue, then ignored it.) I imagine there are still some who would be offended as hell by it. Which is dumb, since it's not like the Son's pitchforking sinners in the ass or anything. This issue, anyway.

And action figure fans; as you might've guessed, the Son of Satan has never received an action figure. Odds are, you will get one before he does...

And, I screwed up on the title, which was meant to refer to Orbital's song "Satan" and which I mistakenly thought was spelled "Say Ten." For some reason. I know I'm thinking of another song there...(Yeah, Reel Big Fish's "Say Ten," a song I enjoy as an unrepentant carnivore...) Some readers may remember "Satan" from the opening to the movie Spawn, but please don't hold that against it. (I caught Spawn again a while back, and god, it hasn't aged well...) So, here, enjoy "Satan" live from Glastonbury.

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