As some of you may have noticed from the fact that the header logo for the ISB has featured a man socking a polar bear right in the face for the past year or so, there’s not a whole heck of a lot I like more than an old-fashioned super-hero/animal throwdown.
It’s sort of my trademark, as such, but I was still surprised to get an email last week wondering why I only rarely show the other side of things, where the animals come out on top. The simple answer, of course, is that I like super-heroes more than I like animals, and unless it’s, y’know, a gorilla beating the living crap out of a bunch of Nazis, I just don’t get that excited about it.
But never let it be said that the ISB doesn’t present a fair and balanced view of man-on-beast combat, friends, because there is an exception to that rule, and here she is:
Yes, Squirrel Girl!
Say hello to Doreen Green, folks, and don’t bother to adjust your monitors: Steve Ditko was the unparalleled master of sequential art who gave us Spider-Man, the Question, and Chuck Norris Karate Kommandos, so one can assume that when he got the script for an Iron Man story calling for a homely super-heroine, he went ahead and just made her a morlock.
It all works out, though. When she comes back for Great Lakes Avengers, she’s well out of her akward phase, courtesey of Paul Pelletier:
“Skinny little Doreen Green… She grew up. Filled out.”
In addition to the teeth–which can chew through solid wood–Squirrel Girl also boasts a retractable knuckle spike (for climbing, one would assume) and a prehensile tail, gains extra energy by eating nuts (which she holds in her belt pouches, or nutsacks), and, perhaps most importantly, possesses the uncanny ability to speak to squirrels.
This is, unquestionably, the worst set of super-powers ever.
And yet, in her first appearance–conveniently available as a bonus feature in the Great Lakes Avengers trade–she and her rodent running crew take out Doctor Doom:
Suck it, Victor.
And as awesome as that is, it is but a mere prelude to the awe-inspiring events of the GLX-Mas Special, which contains a scene that continues to entertain the entire Internet to this day:
And for that, Dan Slott will always have a special place in my heart. Now if only we could get her to fight some Nazis…