41. Introducing Virtual Man

Pages 8 & 9 of “Multiverse Comics and Stories” introduces Virtual Man

Who is Virtual Man?

Virtual Man began a long time ago as an idea for a syndicated comic strip, but none of the syndicates were interested. Superhero satire was not on their list of approved subjects for comic strips as my rejection letters patiently explained.

But with my usual stubborness, I refused to let VM die. I decided to convert the strips to a comic book. Guess what? That wasn’t such an easy task. The syndicates set quite specific guidelines for formatting strips. I was too lazy to want to do any kind of reformatting that required a lot of work. Maybe for a graphic art whiz it would have been a cinch, but for me it was a headache!

Over the years, while holding down a “regular” job, I toyed with Virch in my spare time. But it wasn’t until I retired in 2016 that I really began to make progress. And yes, it did require redrawing and changing formats and adding panels and eliminating panels. Even Virtual Man changed. He began as a short tubby figure with a truly enormous nose. In that way he was sort of modeled on characters from earlier comic strips. Milt Gross’s wonderful strips like “Count Screwloose from TooLoose” serves as an example (except maybe Virch’s nose was even more gigantic).

Virch evolved into a somewhat slimmer version and his nose shrank a bit –all of which required more redrawing. Despite myself, I started to get into the revisions. I began to labor over the backgrounds, some of which were already fairly elaborate.

Virtual Man as a character was a bit bewildered. He’s a newbie on the superhero scene and his much more experience sidekick, Zeldoid the Cyberdog, is trying her best to aid his debut. The intro, however, shows his most astonishing ability –he can access at will different universes of the Multiverse and can even transport people to the one particular cosmos that is closest to their “heart’s desire.” How’s that for power?

More about this peculiar wannabe hero will be revealed in the next section, the feature story of the comic, “The Case of the Renegade Refrigerator.”

Multiverse Comics and Stories is available at Amazon.com in both print and Kindle versions. The Kindle version is only $4.99 for a full-color comic with 100+ pages, but make sure your Kindle reader or app can handle color.
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