Thursday, April 30, 2015

Classic Enemies: The One! The Only!

I suspect today's entry will prove one of the more popular.  I've had more than a few folks ask when I was going to get to him, and yesterday's post was a bit of putting off the inevitable, truth to tell.  Even now, if I were doing this in strict alphabetical order, tonight's entry would be Firewing, but even Classic Enemies put him first, so let's get going.

Foxbat (created by Bruce Harlick) is arguably the most popular villain in the Champions Universe. He originally appeared in Enemies II, though my first exposure to him was the silly cartoon on page one of Champions II where he demands the readers mail him experience points.  I didn't know precisely who that guy was, but I knew I wanted to find out, so I tracked down a copy of Enemies II the next day.

Every long-time fan of the CU knows Foxbat's origin.  Freddy Fosworth was a rich, spoiled, manchild with a love of comics. Nay! An obsession for comics!  He trained himself to peak physical condition, ready for the day he could become a superhero himself, only to lose his fortune in a stock market crash.  Under the circumstances, villainy was his only viable career path.  Armed with his wits and his mighty ping-pong ball gun, he went forth to wrong rights, put damsels in distress, and ruin the day.

The thing I love about Foxbat is that he's in that same category of crazy self-aware, fourth-wall-breaking character as Ambush Bug or Deadpool.  But Foxbat got there first! (Trust me, I looked it up.)  He's one part Wile E. Coyote, one part Richie Rich on Skid Row, one part your dimwitted cousin who wanders into traffic and believes everything he sees on TV. It's a winning combination. 

I hold a rare distinction in that I've actually been threatened by Foxbat, in writing.  If you look at the letters page in Adventurer's Club #20, you'll see that my nice letter complimenting the efforts to get the magazine back on track are met with outright hostility from dear old Foxy.  I quaked in my boots, I tells ya...

While I'm sure there were GMs and players out there who don't like Foxbat, they're not people I want to play games with. To me, he's a terrific tonic for an overly-serious campaign, a way to deflate the overconfident without making utter fools out of them.  My most memorable use of him was as a foil in my Alamo City Defenders game.  He crashed the initial "audition" episode, trying to make the team, claiming that the rules said nothing about criminal or mental health issues being a disqualifying factor. When that didn't work, he broke out of jail and created his own Defenders, even suing the team for trademark infringement.  He also put the moves on Witchfire, my wife's PC, with hilarious and pyrotechnic results.

Since I know Bruce Harlick has read a couple of these and will probably see this, I'm just going to take it upon myself to speak on behalf of Champions fans everywhere and say, "Thanks!"


  1. Amen to that -- VIVA LA FOXBAT!

  2. Man. These posts have me hyped for some supers gaming.

  3. Now I kind of want some foxbat fun.

  4. In my world I had Foxbat still be a hero, well of a different sort. The loss of the family fortune convinced him that EVIL forces were at work and were trying to stop him from saving humanity. He is always fighting some great grand conspiracy that only he seems to know about or can prove. He runs afoul of the heroes and many times seems to be working at cross purposes to them, of course that is cause they can't/won't see the BIG picture. oddly enough most of the time he does end up helping fix whatever problem the group is working on. I always arrange it so that some of his oddball proof does fit the scenario and things could be as he says. Overall he is a goofy Batman type detective that can help the PCs if they can stand him.

  5. I dig Foxbat. Anyone else feel the version in the Champions comic book was WAAAAY off?