39 – MAVERICK

25 Apr

Subject: Maverick
Real Name: Unrevealed
Height: 6’3″ Weight: 230 lbs.
Group Affiliation: None
First Appearance: X-Men #5, February 1992

Power Ratings:

  • Energy Projection: 1/7
  • Mental Powers: 2/7
  • Strength: 2/7
  • Fighting Ability: 7/7
  • Intelligence: 2/7

The Weapon-X/Omega Red storyline that comprised X-Men vol.2 #’s 4-7 hit me at the absolute perfect time, and was about as perfect as far as sugar to a 9-year old: Wolverine, Sabretooth, guns, a Russian Wolverine, hyperviolence, and low on the schmaltz.Also X-Men #5 had what was probably the sexiest rendering of Psylocke ever:

Maverick, introduced in this storyline, was pretty badass too (as recalled in the awesome blog Not Blog X, he shows off in his first appearance by sadistically shooting a random goon seven times in the face).

Again, as one of the last characters Lee created before his departure from Marvel, his rendering of Maverick plays to his strength: mainly, idealized human bodies obscured by lots of technical details. Incidentally, Maverick is one of the only characters whose Side-B portrait doesn’t show the character without the mask (mainly because at the time his true identity was unknown, though really how mysterious could a guy look under a mask that doesn’t obscure his hair or chin…).

I’ll quickly gloss by his otherwise unremarkable Power Ratings (identical to Wolverine, by the way) to point out that his card refers to his powers as “the amazing ability to see into all the various immediate futures of his foes, so he is able to choose the course of action that allows him to come out on top!” Pretty interesting, if in the same vague ballpark as the powers of Domino and Longshot. But the really interesting detail is… that’s not his power at all! As I always knew it (and Wikipedia backs me up), his unique power is being impervious to kinetic impact, and X-Men #5 even has a scene where he and Wolverine fall from a building several stories up (and also, as a member of the Weapon X program, he also had a healing factor).

I’m not sure about when the X-Men issues Maverick appeared in were actually written (it was in 1992, same as the trading cards), but it’s an oversight that’s both astoundingly pathetic, and also symptomatic of the editorial flustercuck of the period.

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5 Responses to “39 – MAVERICK”

  1. Drew April 25, 2011 at 1:55 pm #

    Doesn’t the card list his Fighting Ability as a 7/7? Your summary of power ratings at the top says 6/7.

    • admin April 25, 2011 at 4:48 pm #

      Fixed! Thanks!

  2. Martha April 25, 2011 at 2:07 pm #

    That’s funny. As a kid, the only exposure I had to Maverick was this card. It was only when the “Wolverine” “movie” came out a few years back that my friends and I started talking about members of the weapon X program and I learned I had been wrong all this time.

    Love the blog! These cards are bringing back a ton of old memories

  3. JM August 19, 2011 at 1:00 am #

    I do recall reading Maverick indeed having future reading powers from the early issues of the X-men allowing him to be one-step ahead of opponents and which was subsequently lost in a “Marvel Comics Present” issue during the early 90’s and the introduction of his new ability (per the comic) regarding kinectic energy.

    I’ve been trying to recall the specific issue but have not much luck on this. I guess at the end of the day it was retconned out of existence, but given a choice between that or his current official power, it makes it more interesting to keep the former.

    • admin August 19, 2011 at 1:17 am #

      I dunno, Maverick’s first appearances were in X-Men #5-7 and in it I recall only a manifestation of his kinetic absorption powers. Various sources online show no mention of his precognitive powers and several even talk about how the precog powers are only mentioned in this card. I really don’t think he ever had the powers in the comics, and this was just an early error by editorial.

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