The North Star

“You see, when I’m going superfast — not my top speed or anything, but fast enough — it’s as though everything around me is frozen in time. Like a world of statues — a single moment, paused … And it’s so beautiful … So calm and still … But as soon as I slow down and try to enter that perfect world … Everything starts to move … And it’s gone.”
–The Flash

“To those who say people wouldn’t look; they wouldn’t be interested; they’re too complacent, indifferent and insulated, I can only reply: There is, in one reporter’s opinion, considerable evidence against that contention. But even if they are right, what have they got to lose? Because if they are right, and this instrument is good for nothing but to entertain, amuse and insulate, then the tube is flickering now and we will soon see that the whole struggle is lost. This instrument can teach, it can illuminate; yes, and it can even inspire. But it can do so only to the extent that Humans are determined to use it to those ends. Otherwise it is merely wires and lights in a box.”
–Edward R. Murrow, the Radio-Television News Directors Association Convention, Chicago, October 15th, 1958

The Lawyer

The Rebel

The Outlaw

The Hero

The North Star
a proposed TV series by Saab Lofton

The North Star is an hour long, afrocentric, sci fi adventure series (Smallville meets The Boondocks, however, this is a drama, NOT a comedy). A modern day Robin Hood, Scott Freeman is a black radical with superspeed who uses dubious methods to raise funds and recruit others to his cause. Though the public is unaware of his existence, Scott Freeman’s exploits are closely monitored — and occasionally influenced — by angels and demons alike …

Scott Freeman (Robert Richard)
Enrique Ortega (Jay Hernandez)
J.D. Sweet (Charlie Murphy)
Annie Rosen (Janeane Garofalo)
Jarvis/Metatron (Woody Harrelson)
Satan (Timothy Carhart)

Scott Freeman

Scott is the son of a Black Panther named Steve Freeman and a white hippie named Mary Ellen Stuart. They met at a Panther headquarters right before a COINTELPRO raid and fell in love at first sight — so much so, they both simultaneously decided to RUN rather than be arrested. Conceived on the RUN, baby Scott gained the mutant ability to move and heal himself at superspeed so long as he has PLENTY to eat. When Scott was about to be born, a pair of cops moonlighting as Ku Klux Klansmen pulled the expecting couple over. Just as the cops were about to kill them for being a mixed couple, an angel swooped down, disabled the cops, scooped up the pregnant mother and dropped her off at a nearby hospital. The Black Panther father was left behind and the cops subsequently took their frustrations out on him — charging the Panther with the assault the angel committed and spitefully sentencing him to life without parole. Since then, the mother split her time between raising Scott in a secluded, Northern California hippie commune and organizing a campaign to free her husband (FREE STEVE!).

Since he was able to break the sound barrier during puberty, Scott was all but raised in isolation, so his social graces aren’t very refined. Between that and his leftist upbringing, he’s often terse, brutally honest and rarely suffers a fool lightly. To tolerate how slow everything seems to someone with his hyperactive perceptions, Scott has studied Buddhism over the years and regularly engages in meditation. He also smokes a LOT of marijuana since it soothes his otherwise accelerated state of being. All of this — plus his commitment to save the world — has made him very lonely. Plus, despite his youth, Scott feels ancient given how many experiences are crammed into every millisecond. However, Scott knows several languages since his speed reading is superhuman, so he considers himself a citizen of the planet Earth and acts accordingly.

In addition, Scott’s been told by the angel Metatron that he shouldn’t ever have sex since his pelvic thrusts would literally feel like a jackhammer to an ordinary woman. Scott manages to get around this rule by using lesbian techniques (or limiting himself to women who are just as superhuman as he is — see Scott’s Lovers for details). Metatron does not approve, for while vibrating his tongue/fingers at superspeed isn’t harmful, doing so does leave mortal women so — ravaged, they can never be satisfied any other way. Therefore, either an irrational addiction to Scott’s touch comes over them or a bitter resentment towards him for having ruined their sexual pallet.

Scott is (pardon the phrase) faster than a speeding bullet, but since he’s not invulnerable (think Wolverine’s quick healing — it accounts for why stomping his feet on the ground at hundreds of miles per hour during every run doesn’t cripple him), it’s extremely painful to try and stop a bullet barehanded. Therefore, in situations where gunfire is to be expected, Scott will make it a point to bring an ALUMINUM baseball bat so that bullets can be safely swatted away.

Because of the large amount of food his heightened metabolism requires (a full course meal seven times per day is ideal — anything less and he begins to weaken), Scott leaves huge piles of feces the few times per year anal excretion is necessary. So Scott has gotten into the activist habit of leaving piles of manure on Wall Street, the White House lawn, the gates of the School of the Americas, in front of the Pentagon, the C.I.A. and so forth. He’ll either do that or provide poor farmers with a free source of fertilizer.

Only a few dozen people on the entire planet know of Scott’s superspeed. These are usually proxies with money whom Scott indebts (a la Alec Baldwin’s 1994 version of The Shadow) so he’ll always be able to afford all-you-can-eat buffets and other amenities — such as a series of cell phones with his number on SPEED DIAL (no pun intended) in case he’s needed. Out of an understandable fear of media exploitation or governmental experimentation/extermination, Scott goes out of his way to maintain a low profile and encourages witnesses to dismiss any accounts of a black man disappearing in the blink of an eye as delusional hallucinations.

Enrique Ortega

Enrique is Scott Freeman’s best friend and the first person to ever learn of Scott’s superspeed — besides his mother, of course. They’ve known each other since childhood. While Scott was home schooled and ordered by his mom to stay hidden within a Northern California hippie commune, Enrique provided a much needed window to the rest of the world. The commune grew fruit/vegetables and Enrique’s parents often came to pick them up so they could be sold across the Bay Area. Since there weren’t any children Scott’s age in the commune — and since Enrique was an only child whose parents would bring him along during those trips to the commune — the two youths bonded.

Enrique’s parents originally came from Mexico and eventually became American citizens. They co-own a couple of small, organic/health food stores and raised Enrique to (at least) be a (semi-)vegetarian. Though his family could be construed as an example of the American Dream come true (since they went from dirt poor to middle class), they also raised him to be a revolutionary with a healthy disdain for “gringo imperialism.”

Enrique is a gifted, bilingual poet and an even more talented lecturer who’s always being asked by the Peace Movement to speak at a variety of events. Though he’s going to college on a full scholarship, constantly being on the road has delayed the attainment of his Ph.D. enough to upset his parents.

His speeches are particularly scathing (he’s known for his gory, graphic descriptions of Human rights abuses) and Enrique would’ve been assassinated long ago if Scott hadn’t been bodyguarding him over the years.

Enrique is also very good looking and extremely popular with the ladies, but he’s never really taken advantage of this — except to encourage women to donate to his favorite causes, such as Pastors for Peace.

Enrique is an expert motorcycle rider and has a Honda XL500 trail bike he call El Caballo Rojo (The Red Stallion). One of his lifelong dreams is to retrace the path Che Guevara rode in 1952 (The Motorcycle Diaries). Whenever Scott isn’t around to save him from assassins, Enrique escapes them riding El Caballo Rojo in elaborate, high speed chase scenes.

Though J.D. Sweet will disparagingly refer to Enrique as Scott’s “sidekick,” it’d be more accurate to say Scott is Enrique’s bodyguard, since his popularity as a speaker will ensure that one day he’ll be compared to the likes of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.

J.D. Sweet

Not much is known about his early years, but for the better part of a decade, J.D. Sweet was the most powerful pimp, gangster and drug dealer in California history. It all came to a head one night when the police cut a Faustian/Machiavellian deal with Sweet’s criminal rivals in order to storm his fortress of a mansion. However, just when it looked as though Sweet was about to sacrifice his life to keep from ever being arrested (as Sweet always promised he would), Scott Freeman came to his rescue. Using superspeed, Scott disabled (and severely disoriented) both the cops and the gang members who’re after Sweet while helping the crime lord escape. Because there were a series of large, fiery explosions throughout the raid, the public still assumes Sweet died that night — an assumption Scott tries to cultivate whenever possible (“J.D. Sweet is dead,” is an often heard phrase).

Scott saved Sweet so he’d feel obligated to fund Scott’s crusades and charities, however, Sweet despises the many rules Scott forces him to work under:

1) The only drug Sweet is allowed to deal in is marijuana since it’s non-lethal and all-natural.

2) Sweet can continue as a pimp but ONLY if the women in question are willing (75% of Sweet’s stable abandoned him immediately after Scott came into his life and gave each prostitute a ten thousand dollar severance — only “Jade,” “Candy” and “Fulana” remained) and at NO time can he strike them or even raise his voice in their presence. They also keep two-thirds of how much ever is made.

a) Jade looks just like Lucy Liu. She’s an expert in massage and acupuncture.

b) Candy looks just like Sanaa Lathan (except darker) and is in love with Scott Freeman but hates that Scott only likes white women.

c) Fulana is the leader. An outspoken Latina, she looks just like Salma Hayek and makes sure J.D. Sweet ONLY gets a third of what’s made.

3) Because it’s best if the world assumes he’s dead, Sweet can no longer live in a mansion or frequent nightclubs every night as he’s accustomed to. Instead, Sweet is to spend the rest of his life secluded in a suburban four bedroom/three bath, which is the base of Scott’s operations.

4) On those rare occasions Sweet can leave the house, he has to “dress down” (Scott pawned all of Sweet’s gold/jewelry and the money was given to the homeless), wear sunglasses and limit himself to public transportation — he can never own another car.

In addition, the house is adorned with pictures of Gandhi, the Black Panthers and other left-wing legends as a reminder of where Sweet’s money is going. And since Sweet is constantly asked to pay for things such as the bail of jailed activists or full-page newspaper ads for leftist organizations, he’s gained the nickname “ATM” — much to his chagrin.

Over the course of the series, Sweet makes a variety of threats (some are made in jest, most are not) towards Scott, but knows full well he’d stand NO chance against “the world’s fastest man.” And while the public believes him to be deceased, there are those in the underworld who know better and view Sweet as either a laughing stock or someone who’s fallen from grace — all the while wondering why he’s clearly under the thrall of a beta male like Scott Freeman (yet another rule is that Sweet must help keep Scott’s secret) …

As a result of the aforementioned, Sweet often vents his frustration of Scott’s friends — Enrique Ortega and Annie Rosen. Sweet usually makes racist comments about Enrique’s Latino heritage, and since Annie doesn’t like that Sweet’s a pimp, there’s plenty of sexist antagonism between them to say the least. This never goes too far since Scott is always a cell phone call away. If Sweet ever misbehaves too badly, he’s taken on high speed runs against his will and/or is dropped off at the most remote/desolate corners of the globe (“I hear the Himalayas are nice this time of year,” is an often heard phrase from Scott, before leaving Sweet on a snowy mountain top for an hour or two as punishment for a particularly grievous offense).

Sweet is a product of mainstream, urban black culture whereas Scott is a nerd who dresses like a 1930s adventurer and “sounds white” — this difference in tastes accounts for even more conflict. However, Sweet isn’t just a common thug — he’s a huge fan of Shakespeare who’s able to quote the Bard at whim and in depth (his favorite play being Macbeth). Sweet is also a botanical genius and grows his own marijuana in the basement of the suburban home Scott had him buy.

Annie Rosen

Annie is a Jewish lesbian and the single greatest trial lawyer the American Civil Liberties Union has ever had in its employ due to her deductive reasoning and photographic memory. Because of Annie’s support for the people of Palestine, she was disowned by her Zionist family, so risking a great deal by taking on lost causes is almost second nature. It hasn’t helped her popularity in the community, but Annie’s willingness to rush where angels fear to tread accounts for how often she’s fought for the free speech of Nazis and Ku Klux Klansmen in court.

She doesn’t approve of Scott’s and Enrique’s marijuana smoking and she definitely has a problem with J.D. Sweet being a pimp, but Annie turns a blind eye to all that (and more) out of an acknowledgement of all the good Scott’s superspeed is capable of. Annie and Scott first met when a gang was threatening to “rape her straight” and Scott came to the rescue. Indebted to him as Sweet was, Annie signed on for his mission (see The Mission for details).

While Sweet reluctantly goes against his capitalistic, egotistical nature to work for Scott and Enrique helps because of a lifelong camaraderie, Annie lends her legal services out of guilt. Having defended the far right on behalf of the ACLU for so many years, she felt the need to balance the scales of justice.

Annie love dolphins, anything with caramel on it and the Rocky/Bullwinkle cartoon.


The night Scott Freeman was born, two white supremacist cops pulled his parents over. Before the cops could lay a hand on either parent, a winged, glowing superpowered figure descended from Heaven, beat them down and flew the expectant mother to the nearest emergency room so she could give birth to Scott in peace — leaving the father behind to face the racist cops’ wrath alone.

The winged figure was none other than Metatron, the voice of God, and unlike Satan, he can remain solid while on Earth (hence him being able to thrash the cops). After Scott grew up and began his destiny as a superhero, Metatron began occasionally appearing to him while he dreamt. Except curiously enough, Metatron appears to Scott as a Southern gentleman named “Jarvis” who wears a white hat/suit and black string tie while rowing a boat down a river. Scott is usually the only other person in the boat, and given the surreal sights around them, he’s theorized those “dreams” are actually jaunts into the afterlife and that Jarvis performs the same function as Charon from Greek myth. It’s also been theorized Metatron appears as Jarvis to assuage Scott’s understandable mistrust of Southern white men.

Jarvis/Metatron contacts Scott very rarely and only to alert him of the gravest of dangers; usually threats involving Satan. Jarvis/Metatron feels guilty for having left Scott’s father behind and almost sees Scott as the son that he, as an angel, could never have.


Satan is jealous of Humanity (longing for the days “back before the beginning of time” when it was just him and God) and is the biggest proponent of the cynical claim that “Human nature” will inevitably cause the Human race to fail and ultimately destroy itself. After Samson and the birth of Jesus, Satan made God promise not to send any more superhumans to Earth in order to “cheat” or “help Humans when they ought to be helping themselves.” Therefore, Satan views the advent of Scott Freeman as a gross violation of that promise, hence their feud. In fact, it was Satan who alerted the cops to the car Scott’s parents were in — all the while prompting them to kill him before he was born.

Satan can visually/audibly appear in the material world — and can instantly teleport anywhere (so he’s “faster” than Scott) — but he has no actual substance. As a result, Satan always makes it a point to tempt someone from afar, lest he be given away — coming in physical contact with him would be akin to passing through a ghost or hologram (a telltale sign of his presence is Satan’s inability to cast a shadow). Satan can shapeshift, and is also telepathic/empathic, so he’s able to take a form that’ll best suit his purposes.

However, Satan is far from omnipotent: He cannot hypnotize anyone or tell the future. And since he can’t handle solid objects (while on the mortal plane), Satan counts on villains who — in the pursuit of their baser instincts — wind up doing his bidding. For instance, a mad scientist overly concerned with overpopulation was once told by Satan to lower the population via genocide.

The Mission

When Scott Freeman was a child, he fell in love with Robin Hood. Between the potential his superspeed provided and how the Northern California hippie commune he grew up in naturally reminded him of Sherwood Forest, Scott envisioned himself as a modern day successor to the Prince of Thieves. As Scott began to race across the globe, he couldn’t help but notice the glaring contrasts between the haves and have nots. So from a very early age, Scott would rob from the rich and give to the poor — except he’d do it so fast, no one could ever catch him.

By the time he became a young man, Scott did less and less himself and operated more and more via a series of proxies. Taking a cue from The Shadow, Scott got into the habit of saving certain people with access or talents he needed all so they’d be indebted to him. For instance, the rapper M.T. Pockets gives half of everything he makes to Scott as does the boxer Moses “The Mountain” Hightower. The money is then funneled into the Peace Movement and other, similar causes — as is the case with J.D. Sweet. However, Sweet differs from Pockets, Hightower and the rest of Scott’s proxies in that he’s the only one who’s reluctant and regrets having signed on with The Mission. This is because Sweet was a crime lord for so many years who never cared about anyone but himself.

The money raised by the proxies goes towards everything from feeding the homeless to paying the bail of jailed activists. The only indulgence Scott allows for himself is his 1930s serial swashbuckler wardrobe. As Sweet once put it, “Scott’s the only nigger I know who doesn’t wait for Halloween to dress like Flash Gordon.”

Scott has never revealed exactly how many proxies there are worldwide — no doubt out of concern for their safety should his connection to them ever be revealed. There couldn’t be more than a handful since Scott thinks (and rightfully so) there are far too many people who know about his superspeed as it is.

Scott’s Lovers

1) Penny Hicks is a pale, petite blonde from a small town located at the exact spot where Mississippi, Alabama and Tennessee meet. Knowing Scott’s weakness for hillbilly women — and knowing that Penny secretly lusts after black men because her father was a KKK Grand Wizard — Satan played cupid and used his influence to see to it they met. Once the two of them did come together, Scott decided to retire from being a superhero and resolved to only use his superspeed to upkeep Penny’s farm. After being told in their dreams of Satan’s involvement by Jarvis/Metatron, Enrique Ortega, J.D. Sweet and Annie Rosen then hunted Scott down and talked him into returning to duty before he was bound to Penny forever via a shotgun wedding.

2) Atomwoman is a redheaded superheroine from a parallel universe in which the characters from Scott’s favorite comic book are real. Initially, Scott was asked to permanently reside in said universe and join a superteam called Just U.S. However, upon realizing how racist the group was (Scott was rendered to the status of an errand boy while the only other black member was Weatherman, a closeted gay who suffered constant discrimination), Scott returned to his universe — taking Weatherman and Atomwoman with him (since she had grown tired of being the only female in Just U.S.). Weatherman settled in Africa (where he would become quite popular in desert regions) while Atomwoman and Scott Freeman fell in love. Unfortunately, in addition to not being able to psychologically deal with how dark and cynical Scott’s universe was, its presence of nuclear missiles and power plants wrecked havoc with her atomic superpowers. Eventually, Atomwoman accumulated so much excess nuclear energy she had no choice but to fly into deep space and self-detonate — lest she destroy the Earth. This broke Scott’s heart so much he swore off of women altogether, until …

3) Desdemona (a.k.a. “Dez”) is a hundred year old vampire (a very Gothic pale brunette) who was bitten by members of the Clan Calixa, an extremely elitist clique of aristocratic, Victorian vampires. Rather than feed on Humanity, Desdemona left the Clan Calixa and subsisted off of forest animals until the lack of Human blood drove her mad. Coming to an internal compromise, Desdemona decided to limit herself to the blood of criminals — hence she became known as Vampire Vigilante. In fact, fighting crime is how Desdemona and Scott met. After getting to know each other, Scott learned the Clan Calixa was trying to tempt Desdemona into feeding on innocent Humans as they do. Once he’d had enough of their smug, condescending manner, Scott decapitated the entire clan — thus killing them all and setting Desdemona free. Out of all the relationships Scott ever had, the one with Desdemona lasted the longest and was the most meaningful.


There will only be two seasons, or 24 episodes, of The North Star — think of it as a very long mini-series, since one of the biggest problems with television is that certain shows wear out their welcome …

1. Pilot, Part I

After a brief prologue about Scott Freeman’s birth (October 25, 1985), the story flash forwards decades (October 21, 2015) and shows Enrique Ortega giving a scathing speech about America’s genocidal imperialism to a cheering crowd. Jim Finley, a CIA agent (Mark Hamill) tries to assassinate Enrique but Scott uses superspeed to save him. This is witnessed by Finley but when he tries to tell his superior (Ronny Cox) that a black man used a baseball bat to swat bullets away, he’s dismissively sent on medical leave. Finley then becomes obsessed with exposing Scott and strikes out on his own in order to do so (this becomes a running theme throughout the series).

Simultaneously, Enrique is arrested on a trumped up charge of holding a traffic-blocking rally without a permit, and after calming an enraged Scott down, he says to find a good lawyer. Scott immediately goes to the ACLU asking for their best; insisting that money is no object, and he’s referred to Annie Rosen. Scott sits in on the conclusion of one of her trials, but before she could be tapped, the Zionist Rosen family accosts Annie outside the courtroom for supporting the Palestinian cause. Not wanting to interrupt a family dispute, Scott trails Rosen to a lesbian bar — where she and her girlfriend are attacked by drunken frat boys. In the process of preventing her from being gang raped, Scott accidentally reveals his superspeed to Rosen, so he decides to explain everything.

Scott directs Rosen to a suburban three bedroom/two bath on the outskirts of Bay City (a metaphor for Oakland, California — just as Superman’s Metropolis is supposed to represent Manhattan), where a crimelord who was thought by the public to be dead, J.D. Sweet, sulks because Jade, Candy and Fulana — prostitutes who used to be under his thrall — are now taking the lion’s share of their earnings. Scott explains that since he saved Sweet’s life, Sweet has become one of the chosen few who knows about Scott’s superspeed and works for him as a fundraiser for various charities (a brief flashback of what happened would be inserted here). Rosen reluctantly agrees to help Enrique get out of jail, but doesn’t like the idea of having to keep Scott’s secret or being paid with money made via prostitution and marijuana dealing (not to mention Sweet’s sexist comments).

2. Pilot, Part II

Rosen is able to get Enrique out of jail easily enough, but then Scott gets a call from his mother and runs at superspeed to see her. It turns out Scott’s father Steve Freeman is being transfered to Death Row and Scott seriously contemplates breaking his father out of jail even though doing so would surely reveal himself to the world because of the amount of security cameras and witnesses. Told to “sleep on it,” Scott dreams of being in a row boat with a Southern gentleman named “Jarvis,” who says he’s been on the right path thus far, but that everything would be ruined if his superspeed was allowed to become public. Scott deduces that he’s receiving a message from God and abides by it. Scott talks Rosen into signing onto what he calls “The Mission” full time and she manages to get his father transfered off of Death Row.

Satan approaches Finley, tells the agent every detail there is to know about Scott and sets a trap across from Scott’s suburban home: Satan is to draw Scott out into the open by changing into a rampaging monster, and once Scott uses his superspeed to combat the supposed threat, Finley is to capture it all on film. Finley deviates from the plan and begins shooting at Scott instead, which pisses Satan off to no end. In his anger, Satan inadvertently demonstrates how any form taken by him on the material plane is intangible and doesn’t cast shadows. Realizing he’s being duped, Scott takes off and leaves Finley raving about devils and superheroes while a straitjacket is being strapped on. Scott and Enrique later gives Rosen a pep talk (this is how the phrase North Star comes up) welcoming her into the fold even as Sweet makes snide comments in the background (which results in Scott taking Sweet “around the world”; Scott grabs Sweet and either drops him off in some remote part of the world or just scares the shit out of him by exceeding the speed of sound) …

3. No Time For Love, Dr. Jones

Scott, Enrique and Rosen debate the implications of using the royalities from porno movies (starring Jade, Candy and Fulana) to fund battered women’s shelters and free, feminist martial arts classes. Meanwhile, one of Scott’s charities — a homeless shelter run by a liberation theologist — comes under fire. Also too, Candy develops feelings for Scott, but much to her chagrin, he’s only into white women — a couple of whom put in brief appearances throughout the episode to either curse him out for ruining their sexual pallets with his superspeed or beg for more. Jarvis appears as well in a vision to warn/wean Scott off of sex.

4. Full of It

Mounds of urine drenched shit begin appearing in front of CIA headquarters, the Pentagon, and other sources of evil (which attracts the attention of Agent Finley). It turns out that Scott is leaving these mounds around because of how his hyper-accelerated metabolism works (t here’s a secret league of black scientists in Atlanta, GA that Scott turns to whenever questions about his powers need to be answered and it’s introduced in this episode). All along, Scott talks a young black genius out of joining the military and orders Sweet to pay the kid’s way through college.

5. Focus on Annie Rosen.

6. Sweetness and Light

After being struck by lightning, Scott loses his powers. Once Sweet finds this out, he beats Scott down and returns to his old ways. After Scott’s superspeed returns (thanks to a second, subsequent bolt of lightning), Sweet is put back in his place, but Scott allows him one, last gangstalicious party.

7. Focus on Enrique Ortega.

8. Heroes of Hiroshima, Nobles of Nagasaki

Scott’s sensei, Saigō Katsumoto, is introduced — a Hiroshima survivor herself, she arranges a world tour of the other remaining survivors of the Hiroshima and Nagasaki bombings, but there’s Satanic sabotage afoot. A flashback of Scott’s early days as a sneak thief and Robin Hood fan is also seen.

9. Invitation Only

On a dark and stormy night, a starving and injured Scott accidentally crashes through a window into a rich white family’s house during a dinner party. After the patriarch’s lovely daughter cares for him, he schools her parents and their guests on the finer points of black history and defends them from a home invasion. In the end, they all agree to keep Scott’s secret and even sponsor a couple of his charities.

10. Peace In Our Time

Annie Rosen speaks before Israel’s parliament about its horrid Human rights record while Scott runs across the Middle East trying to stop a series of bombings which threaten the peace.

11. House of the Darkest Shadows

This episode is an homage to Japanese samurai movies and depicts J.D. Sweet as The Black Dragon, a mystic shogun no one can defeat in battle.

12. Countrybama, Part I

Penny Hicks is a pale, petite blonde from a small town located at the exact spot where Mississippi, Alabama and Tennessee meet. Knowing Scott’s weakness for hillbilly women — and knowing that Penny secretly lusts after black men because her father was a KKK Grand Wizard — Satan plays cupid and uses his influence to see to it they meet. After the two of them come together, Scott decides to retire from being a superhero and resolves to only use his superspeed to upkeep Penny’s farm.


13. Countrybama, Part II

After being told in their dreams of Satan’s involvement by Jarvis/Metatron, Enrique Ortega, J.D. Sweet and Annie Rosen hunt Scott down and talk him into returning to duty before he’s bound to Penny forever via a shotgun wedding.

14. Eight Thousand Miles

To take his friend’s mind off of Penny Hicks, Enrique takes Scott on a reenactment of Che Guevara’s motorcycle tour through South America. The trip strains their lifelong relationship to the breaking point but they make amends when the opportunity to stem the damage America’s foreign policy has done presents itself.

15. Just U.S., Part I

Atomwoman is a redheaded superheroine from a parallel universe in which the characters from Scott’s favorite comic book are real — a universe discovered by the league of black scientists. After entering it, Scott is asked to permanently reside in said universe and join a superteam called Just U.S. However, upon realizing how racist the group is (Scott was rendered to the status of an errand boy while the only other black member was Weatherman, a closeted gay who suffered constant discrimination), Scott returns to his native universe — taking Weatherman and Atomwoman with him (since she had grown tired of being the only female in Just U.S.).

16. Just U.S., Part II

Weatherman settles in Africa (where he becomes quite popular in desert regions — one of the historical differences between Scott’s Earth and ours is Africa’s partial salvation) while Atomwoman and Scott Freeman fall in love. Unfortunately, in addition to not being able to psychologically deal with how Scott’s universe is comparably darker and more cynical, its presence of nuclear missiles/power plants wrecks havoc with her atomic superpowers. Eventually, Atomwoman accumulates so much excess nuclear energy she has no choice but to fly into deep space and self-detonate — lest she destroy the Earth. This breaks Scott’s heart so much he swears off of women altogether.

17. Trippin’

Scott volunteers to take part in a black scientist league experiment involving backwards time travel (in order to keep from dealing with the death of Atomwoman) and winds up one of the 54th Massachusetts — right before the battle of Fort Wagner …

18. Pure Vegas, Baby

This episode introduces rapper M.T. Pockets and boxer Moses “The Mountain” Hightower — both of whom are proxies of Scott’s and both happen to have career-shaping events in Las Vegas during the same weekend, so Scott, Enrique, Rosen and even Sweet venture there and hilarity ensues …

19. Target Demographics with Disposable Income

Enrique attempts to produce an action-adventure series about a Latino superhero and encounters corporate censorship head on. Told that his TV series is too revolutionary, and as a result, would alienate white suburbia, Scott organizes a letter-writing campaign to get it on the air.

20. Vampire Vigilante, Part I

Desdemona (a.k.a. “Dez”) is a hundred year old vampire (a very Gothic pale brunette) who was bitten by members of the Clan Calixa, an extremely elitist clique of aristocratic, Victorian vampires. Rather than feed on Humanity, Desdemona left the Clan Calixa and subsisted off of forest animals until the lack of Human blood drove her mad. Coming to an internal compromise, Desdemona decided to limit herself to the blood of criminals — hence she became known as Vampire Vigilante. In fact, fighting crime is how Desdemona and Scott first meet. After getting to know each other, Scott learns the Clan Calixa is trying to tempt Desdemona into feeding on innocent Humans as they do. Once he’s had enough of their smug, condescending manner, Scott decapitates the entire clan — thus killing them all and setting Desdemona free.

21. Vampire Vigilante, Part II

As fate would have it, one of the Clan Calixa escaped Scott’s purge and this episode is about that vampire’s revenge. Candy deals with her vehement jealousy of Dez, meanwhile, Scott deals with his fear of being accidentally bitten during sex.

22. Focus on Desdemona/Vampire Vigilante.

23. Finale, Part I

Scott is in Japan meditating where he has a vision of God, who appears to him as a baby sumo wrestler with blue skin floating in mid air amidst swirling protons and electrons; as if an atom. God tells Scott that his time has finally come and disappears. Confused, since Jarvis/Metatron is usually the one who speaks for The Almighty, Scott begins to assume the line “your time has come” means he’ll die soon. Scott stresses himself out trying to do as much good as he can before the end, as it were, and this is noticed by his friends.

An increasingly rebellious Sweet has taken to venturing out more often than usual, is eventually recognized and subsequently arrested. Rosen refuses to use her legal skills to free him on the grounds that Scott shouldn’t have relied so heavily on his criminal activities. Throughout the finale, Sweet tells a very slanted version of events to his cellmates in prison and goes through a series of misadventures, which eventually leads to his escape.

After a particularly indicting lecture on the illogic of America’s immigration policies, Enrique gets into an intense high speed chase; his motorcycle, El Caballo Rojo, is being shot to pieces by a truck full of minutemen who’re actually attempting to deport him, dead or alive. Enrique is about to call Scott on his cell phone when that too is shot out of his hand. Just then, a blur of wind disables the minutemen, but instead of it being the Scott Enrique knows and loves, it turns out to be a much older version of Scott Freeman.

The elder Scott claims to be from decades in the future, and after Enrique reunites with the Scott he’s familiar with and Rosen, the elder describes a timeline in which a mad scientist obsessed with overpopulation triggers World War III in order to cut down on the amount of Humans being born. The elder Scott wasn’t able to stop the madman in time, and as a result, three-fourths of Humanity died in atomic fire. Citing that foreknowledge is forewarning, the younger Scott intends on changing history for the better. The scientist in question turns out to be manipulated by Satan into wiring all the world’s nuclear arsenals to his computer so that pushing one button would empty every warhead onto random targets, but thanks to the elder Scott, the younger was able to stop that from happening. The younger Scott, however, is perplexed because by all rights, changing the timeline should’ve caused the elder Scott to fade from existence, and yet he’s still around.

24. Finale, Part II

The elder Scott then claims that after the nuclear holocaust in his timeline, he revealed himself to what was left of Humanity and used his superspeed to power a massive treadmill/turbine which would provide an unlimited amount of clean, renewable energy. The elder Scott proposes that this same machine be built and activated in the now altered timeline so that Big Oil and Big Nuke would be put out of business and a utopian society could come into being. Eager to do as much good as possible before his imminent death, the younger Scott agrees. Being more cynical than Scott, Enrique and Rosen are both suspicious of his older counterpart, and after confronting him; demanding to know why he’s so quick to build the machine, the younger Scott tells them for the first time about that vision of God in Japan. Enrique and Rosen warn Scott of the dangers of overcompensating and to appreciate the difference he’s already made.

Having escaped from jail, Sweet returns to Bay City for a stash of money/drugs/etc. he’s had hidden from Scott for months. Sweet is caught by the elder Scott, which thoroughly confuses Sweet and makes him wonder how long was he imprisoned. However, the reason why the elder Scott was near Sweet’s stash in the first place is because it happened to be next to the point where the elder came from the future — something Sweet is more than happy to point out, since doing so takes eveyone’s attention off that stash. Wanting to catch a glimpse of things to come, the younger Scott peers through the time portal but finds nothing but darkness absolute and almost dies from asphixation.

While he’s passed out, Scott has a vision of Jarvis, which warns him of his older counterpart’s motives. After coming to, the younger Scott chases down the elder for answers in a breakneck race around the world. Exhausted, the elder Scott confesses that the machine didn’t work in the future, and in fact, wound up draining energy instead of emitting it — so much so, every star in the universe was snuffed out; extinguishing all life. The elder Scott believes he deserves a second chance and can get the machine to work properly, but the younger Scott insists that it be destroyed.

Using one of his disguises, Satan tricks Desdemona into activating the machine, and since the elder Scott is too weary to do what’s necessary to shut it down, the younger Scott must enter the machine and destroy it from the inside. Doing so takes all his strength and he dies as a result — meanwhile, the future version of him fades away; ceasing to exist (since someone or something else could’ve triggered WWIII, the elder Scott remained in existence, only the death of the younger Scott would’ve negated the previous timeline). Desdemona doesn’t want to live without Scott — not to mention an inability to forgive herself for having been fooled by Satan and nearly triggering the end of life itself — so she commits vampire suicide by walking into the dawn of a new day. Sweet grabs his stash and heads for the Caribbean, never to be seen again — leaving Enrique and Rosen to mourn and continue the good work Scott left behind. The very last scene shows Scott and Desdemona in Jarvis’ row boat heading for Heaven.


I, Miss Peace

The Strange Case of Sarah Manlove
I, Miss Peace
by Saab Lofton

“Don’t be ladylike! God almighty made women and the Rockefeller gang of thieves made the ladies.”
–Mary “Mother” Jones

“Not even girls want to be girls so long as our feminine archetype lacks force, strength and power … The obvious remedy is to create a feminine character with all the strength of Superman plus all the allure of a good and beautiful woman.”
–William Moulton Marston, the creator of Wonder Woman

April 4th, 2009

The statistical probability of winning at gambling is remote, at best, and yet, people from across the country and around the world continue to stream into Las Vegas nevertheless. This constant flow of foot traffic was one of the reasons Sarah Manlove chose Vegas as her base of operations …

… another reason was Sin City’s perpetually sunny weather, which made it all the easier to wear what she often did: A superheroic bodystocking complete with a mask, gloves and sock-like boots. Sky blue with white highlights, Sarah’s skin-tight outfit had a dove on its chest and a wreath adorning her collar/shoulder — all of this accounted for why a particularly paranoid militia member once said she looked like trade show model for the United Nations.

While dressed this way, Sarah only answered to Mistress Peace (though sometimes she’ll accept Miss Peace, for short), and while in character, her voice took on a sense of purpose far too few find in life. “If you’re wondering why the economy is in dire straits, look no further than the mansions paid for by the sale of nuclear missiles,” Mistress Peace would call out to passerby from the corner of Sahara Avenue and Las Vegas Boulevard, “there are over 25,000 nuclear missiles worldwide and each one is more powerful than the bomb America dropped on Hiroshima! That’s not defense, nor is it deterrence, that’s just nonsense!”

Inbetween similar sermons, Mistress Peace would pass out flyers and ask for donations. On a good day, the sight of her slim, petite and sensual figure poured into that Spandex could coax a male tourist into donating as much as a hundred dollars (over the years, Mistress Peace has singlehandedly raised almost $50,000 for organizations such as Greenpeace, Code Pink, Food Not Bombs and A.N.S.W.E.R.). She hated to occasionally alienate the wives/girlfriends of those men who donated, but sex does in fact sell, and what better cause could there possibly be than saving the world?

For as long as she could remember, the coy and snide seemed drawn to her — and on this particular day, a textbook example of said attraction occurred: Two superficial women who’re between shopping malls glanced at Mistress Peace and they simultaneously turned their noses up. “Halloween isn’t for another six months!” One woman quipped.

“Maybe there’s a Star Trek convention in town!” The other woman chimed in.

“Funny you should mention Star Trek, because I AM fighting for Humanity’s future,” Mistress Peace fired back, “and instead of buying even more overly expensive shoes, why don’t you two donate to a good cause?”

“You must WANT to be a lonely old maid …” One of the women spat venomously as she took her fellow shopper by the arm and stormed off. Meanwhile, i t took a great degree of superhuman effort, but Mistress Peace somehow managed to sublimate her righteous rage and kept from beating those two bitches to a bloody pulp.

Aside from Elvis impersonators, Mistress Peace was one of Vegas’ most photographed icons. She lost count of how many men leaned next to her in order to pose for pictures (and steal a brief kiss/embrace in the process). Fortunately, Mistress Peace rarely had to slap a man who made the mistake of pinching her behind. No pun intended, but she only dealt with this a handful of times …

… and then there’s that drunken frat boy, who was a bit too proud to hail from the house of Alpha Beta. “You should come back with me, honey, we’re having a kegger tonight.”

“I’m not your ‘honey,'” at that moment, Mistress Peace caught the frat boy’s inebriant scent, “and you probably shouldn’t have anything else to drink either.”

“Go to HELL!” With an abrupt gesture, the frat boy scattered dozens of flyers into what little wind the Las Vegas desert had. “You’re probably a damn commie anyway!”

Rather than attempt to retrieve her flyers, Mistress Peace grabbed and held the donation can (containing nearly $75 in bills/change by this point) the way a wide receiver on the gridiron would. She then anticipated that frat boy’s next menacing move and countered it with a spinning roundhouse kick to the torso, which sent him sprawling into a casino’s nearby flower bed. Upon angrily acknowledging how muddy he suddenly became, the pride of Alpha Beta House retreated but swore vengeance under his breath.

To her credit, Mistress Peace didn’t call it a day after such an ordeal. Unfortunately, that frat boy returned an hour later with several of his “brothers” — each one seemingly larger and more intimidating than the last …

As the Nevada sun began to set on the western horizon, Mistress Peace immediately packed her things and bolted into the darkening east. She eventually ran far enough ahead of the Alpha Betas until a suitable hiding place was found — inside a dumpster behind a supermarket. Every few minutes, Mistress Peace peaked through a crack to see if it was safe to emerge and restrained the sounds she made weeping by covering her mouth. While shedding the tears which ran down that mask, she inwardly chastised herself for not bringing a cell phone, but even worse were the uncharacteristic thoughts of regret and the painful recollection of what created Mistress Peace in the first place.

November 21st, 1984

An eleven year old Sarah Manlove simply couldn’t stand still while in line; she giddily danced about as her father paid their way into Seattle’s Cinerama for the premiere of Helen Slater’s Supergirl. Gratuitously sarcastic critics had already, heavily panned the film, but John Manlove knew his only child couldn’t care less about some smug analysis of plot and pacing. Since Sarah’s earliest memories consisted of Lynda Carter’s portrayal of Wonder Woman, the next logical step in his daughter’s pop cultural evolution was for her to watch an even more powerful, positive female role model.

Some wondered and worried about Sarah since her mother’s absence all but ensured that the girl would be raised by the fairly macho John to become a total tomboy, but she seemed happy enough …

… or at least should would be, until the truth about Mrs. Manlove stood revealed years later …

During the first third of the movie, Supergirl easily dispatched a couple of would be rapists (one is blown through a wooden fence with superbreath while the other has his switchblade scalded by heat vision) and an uncomfortable John found himself lying to Sarah afterwards; claiming they merely wanted to mug the maid of steel. “Uh, the reason the fat one peaked under Supergirl’s skirt is because he was looking for her wallet,” and so forth.

June 12th, 1991

Much as she wanted to fly like Kara (Supergirl’s Kryptonian name), Sarah settled for those moments of being airborne that acrobatics briefly allowed her. Sarah’s school system in Seattle had been spared the ravages of Reaganomics, so free access to decent gymnasium wasn’t an issue.

However, there was another reason Sarah had become an Olympic-level tumbler: Early on, the conclusion had been reached that the only way to truly emulate her childhood heroines was to combat injustice — and since Human/mortal characters such as Batgirl had mastered the martial arts, she decided to do the same.

Initially, John went along with this because of an understandable desire to know his daughter would be safe from harm, but once prom night had come and gone without Sarah being the slightest bit interested, a red flag went up, which is why he inquired, “So … Your major will be criminal justice, right?”

“That’s what it says on my college application,” Sarah answered indifferently, “you should know, you’re paying for it.”

“And you’re NOT going to hit the streets with a mask and a cape and beat up muggers, right?” John was visibly taken aback by the fiery glare his inquiry garnered, but continued just the same, “you’re going to be a lawyer or a police officer or maybe (God forbid) a bounty hunter, right?”

“Jesus, dad!” Sarah shot to her feet from the forms she was filling out at the dinner table and paced around. “It’s bad enough I get this kind of grief at school, I don’t need it from you too! I’m not crazy!”

“Yeah, well …” John’s eyes wandered as he shrugged and nervously rubbed the back of his neck. “… the problem is your mother just happens to BE crazy and I’m afraid it may run in the genes.”

Time itself appeared to freeze — upon retrospect, Sarah could’ve sworn she saw the wings of a wayward housefly flap in slow motion at that moment, but such heighthened awareness quickly passed. “W-What ..?”

“I know I’ve always said ‘mom is sick’ and that’s why she hasn’t been around,” John blushed, “well, that ain’t too far from the truth.”

“It’s far enough from the truth to be a LiE!” Sarah raised her voice. “So, whenever you said ‘hospital’ you REALLY meant ‘lunatic asylum,’ is that it?! Is she in a straitjacket in a padded cell too?”

“Watch your tone, young lady!” John attempted to reassert his authority. “I’m still the only father you have!”

“Not any more!” Pure angst propelled Sarah upstairs with breakneck speed. Slamming the door to her room shut, she threw herself onto the bed and sobbed profusely. Hearing his daughter’s heartbreaking tears from outside in the hall, John debated with himself over whether the rest of the story should be told; about how HE was personally responsible for Martha Manlove’s psychotic break.

No, John decided. If Sarah ever learned that an act of adultery on his part — which led to Martha catching an incurable venereal disease — drove her mother clinically insane, she’d never forgive him.

After calming herself down, Sarah picked up her phone and dialed the closest approximation to a friend she had, Polly Trout. “You’re not going to believe what my dad just told me …”

Sadly, approximations of friends were all a nerd like Sarah Manlove had, given her lifelong quest for justice in an unjust world. And since Polly couldn’t be trusted to keep the attic of Anne Frank a secret, all of Paul Robeson High knew about “Sarah’s crazy mom” in time for graduation.

“Well, it certainly explains a lot.”

“Every other girl orders their clothes from a Sears catalog, she orders hers from a comic book — now we know why.”

“No wonder she can’t find a man to love, get it ..? What? Her weird last name? HELLO?!”

Sarah was so thoroughly humiliated, she stayed at home during commencement and insisted that her diploma be mailed.

May 1st, 1992

The University of Washington proved to be as lonesome for Sarah Manlove as middle and high school until the criminal justice department asked her to be its representative in a debate with a radical firebrand from the black student union known only as Lumumba. The L.A. Riots were in their third day, and though Rodney King rhetorically queried if everyone could all just get along, no one was willing or able to take his advice.

Sarah only had hours to study for this largely impromptu challenge, but nothing could’ve prepared her for how handsome Lumumba was. Originally, Sarah assumed Lumumba was a female name, but that notion was dispelled the minute she laid eyes on the afrocentric adonis who stood ready to prove any statement of hers wrong.

“It’s ironic that the final episode of The Cosby Show aired last night,” Lumumba’s voice practically ignited the air around him, “because this marks the beginning of a new era; when white folks will finally stop seeing the world in general and blacks in particular through rose-colored glasses! Sure, some of us are doctors and lawyers like the Huxtables, but MOST of us are victims of poverty and police brutality!”

Cheers erupted throughout the dozens in attendance. An American flag had already been burnt to a crisp by someone in the crowd and Sarah began to wonder whether she’d make it back to her dorm room in one piece.

“How do I know they have rose-colored glasses?” Lumumba’s arms flayed about wildly. “How else do you explain those pigs being acquitted even though what they did was caught ON VIDEO? Clearly, SOMETHING kept whites from seeing what everyone else saw! ”

When Lumumba’s time on the mike ran out, a room full of angry eyes turned to Sarah — who blushed so much her face resembled a stop light. She knew there was no way to even attempt a win without being torn limb from limb, which is why a forfeiture was in order: “Mister Lumumba here is absolutely correct. We white people are as dumb as a box of rocks and I can only hope that we’ll be forgiven someday. On behalf of the criminal justice department and the United States of America, I hereby concede this debate to Lumumba. Congratulations; well done, sir.” After stepping towards Lumumba, Sarah shook her stunned opponent’s hand and briskly/gingerly walked away. However, t he pace of Sarah’s walking quickened when she looked behind her and saw that Lumumba was in hot pursuit.

“Hold it!” Lumumba took a moment to catch his breath after he caught up with Sarah. “I’m good but I’m not that good. You gave up on me, didn’t you?”

“No, I saw the logic of your argument, and–”

“Really, now?” A skeptical Lumumba stood with his arms akimbo. “OK. If you’re serious about whites being forgiven someday, let’s talk about how that forgiveness can be earned …”

The summer of 1992 brought her more joy than she ever thought possible, for opposites do sometimes attract, and it wasn’t long before Sarah and Lumumba had fallen deeply in love with each other. Sarah even allowed Lumumba to be the one who deflowered her (amidst the fireworks of Independence Day, no less), and afterwards, they talked until dawn while snuggling together. “My God — and to think something that feels THIS good would’ve gotten us lynched only a few decades ago …”

“Excuse me, honey: It would’ve gotten ME lynched,” Lumumba corrected, “you would’ve been, at the most, an outcast.”

“Well, that’s why I want to be a cop,” once Sarah saw how sour Lumumba’s expression had become, she added, “a GOOD cop, like Serpico, so that things keep getting better over time as they have been.”

“If you’re serious about that, you should forget about the law and teach,” Lumumba yawned, “poverty is the number one cause of crime and poverty is caused by ignorance — the poor are too ignorant to know how to LEGALLY make money and the rich are too ignorant to realize you can invest in your community without repeating the mistakes of the commies. It all boils down to ignorance.”

Sarah then lapsed into silence — thinking long and hard about what she just heard — before eventually falling asleep in her lover’s ebony embrace.

It was nothing short of cosmic cruelty for Sarah and Lumumba to have suffered the travesty of justice which came next. Right before school resumed that fall, Lumumba took Sarah to his native Tacoma for a family barbeque, but before the house he was raised in could be reached, the police pulled Sarah’s car over and falsely accused him of “fitting the description.”

An infuriated Lumumba resisted arrest and was shot dead before Sarah’s very eyes — by the time the sun set on that tragic day, the true culprit had been apprehended across town. Yes, he bore a vague, passing resemblance to Lumumba, but it wasn’t nearly enough to justify the atrocity that had been committed.

Ignorance caused another death but it also gained an enemy-for-life. Upon returning to the University of Washington (and after a long, grieving process mended a shattered spirit), Sarah changed her major from criminal justice to education.

February 28th, 1998

The following is a phone conversation between Sarah Manlove and her best friend, Matt Goad …

Matt: I’m just saying, girlfriend, you ought to give Vegas a try. I mean, that overcast, sub-arctic weather up there is only making you more depressed than usual.

Sarah: You know I still have another semester before I get my master’s …

Matt: And like I said, they’re DESPERATE for teachers down here! Hell, more folks move to Vegas every day, and if you’re stupid enough to gamble, you wind up stuck here after you’ve lost it all. So there are even more families with children, and for teachers, that means mo’ money, mo’ money, mo’ money!

Sarah: Fine, you’ve sold me. Besides, I have something else in mind you might be able to help me with … You still sew, right?

Matt: So long as there’s a chorus line full of showgirls on The Strip! It’s how I can afford this two bedroom house, which by the way is half yours should you decide to come down here.

Sarah: I appreciate that, thanks. Listen, I don’t know if you heard about this, but Kofi Annan — the secretary general of the United Nations — just stopped a war that could’ve consumed the whole world before it even started. He proved one man can make a difference.

Matt: Well, good for him, honey, but what does that have to do with moi?

Sarah: People need dramatic examples to shake them out of apathy and I can’t do that as Sarah Manlove. As a woman I’m flesh and blood; I can be ignored I can be destroyed, but as a symbol — as a symbol I can be incorruptible, I can be everlasting … Matt, you used to work in Hollywood before you moved to Vegas — have you ever worked on a superhero costume ..?

August 9th, 2004

Usually, it’s an unruly student and not a teacher who sits in dread outside the principal’s office, and yet there Sarah was …

Earlier that year, she had gone toe-to-toe with the PTA over teaching that the CIA killed JFK in her history class, but now it was a matter of whether Whitney High would let Professor Howard Zinn’s A People’s History of the United States be the standard that said class went by.

It took an hour of cursing out the principal and threatening to organize a strike a week before the first day of school, but a deal was struck: Sarah could order copies of Zinn’s A People’s History, but only if …

a) A Patriot’s History of the United States by Larry Schweikart and Michael Patrick Allen was simultaneously cited in class, in the name of being “fair and balanced”

b) she paid for BOTH sets of books out of her own pocket

… Sarah reluctantly agreed — even though it’d mean twice as much work and flirting with bankruptcy. And while most other educators would’ve considered that enough for one day, Sarah subsequently ducked into the nearest ladies room and emerged as Mistress Peace. Disregarding the looks such a change of attire garnered from the staff of Whitney High, she strode with pride to her car (which would soon have to be sold in order to pay for those history books) and drove to The Strip — the boulevard in Las Vegas where most of its casnios are.

For the next few hours, Mistress Peace stood in all her glory on a street corner, raised dozens of dollars, and she even managed to slam then-presidential candidate, John Kerry, in a speech: “Today, Kerry said he would’ve invaded Iraq regardless of whether any weapons of mass destruction actually existed (which they don’t)! In the name of all that is holy and sacred! This means Kerry didn’t need to be lied to! This means Kerry will bend over backwards to appeal to the lowest common denominator; who evidently watched Patrick Swayze’s Red Dawn one time too many,” that comment brought smiles to some and shame to others, “this means he’s more dangerous than Bush! That’s why I’m voting for Nader, and before you falsely accuse me of spoiling an already-spoiled election, keep in mind that Nader got less than a hundred thousand votes in Florida whereas ONE MILLION black voters were kept from voting there at all! But does the Democratic Party blame the racism of Florida? No! It continues to scapegoat Nader! Further proof of just how worthless it is!”

Because Mistress Peace had to fend off a rabid “Anybody But Bush” Democrat incensed over any support for Ralph Nader, she was too distracted to say or do anything about the young man who stared at her from afar with disturbing intensity.

By sundown, Mistress Peace was already en route to her next stop, Café Roma, where every Monday night, its open mike allowed poets to perform. Though she didn’t actually have a poem, Mistress Peace still hoped the café would listen to her. “I come in here often enough to know that y’all think I’m crazy for wearing this, but what’s REALLY crazy is letting the military-industrial complex get away with mass murder again and again and again. No matter who you are or what you do, everyone can be a part the peace movement — so PLEASE, ask me how you can help. Given the way I dress, I won’t be hard to find.”

That last line did invoke a chuckle amongst Roma’s customers, but much to Mistress Peace’s chagrin, the only people who approached her were a pair of privileged princesses — one of which cradled a pet Chihuahua in a glittery pink sweater. “Sarah–”

“The name is Mistress Peace.”

“Whatever, Sarah,” the prettier of the two dismissively fanned her hand, “this an intervention. A fashion intervention, honey. The mall will be open for another hour, and we’re lucky, that’ll give us just enough time to do something about your — situation.”

Mistress Peace slowly rose from the table she sat at and doing so reminded the spoiled, suburban duo of a hawk spreading its wings before descending upon some hapless prey. “I’m only going to tell you two bitches this one last time: I do NOT need a goddamn makeover,” people in the café who sat within earshot of Mistress Peace began to turn their heads in her direction, “so if you EVER come at me like this again, I’m going to prove that I don’t just look like a superheroine, I fight like one too!”

Everyone in Café Roma went out of their way to avoid Mistress Peace after the aforementioned outburst, but just as she was about to leave, that same young man from the street corner earlier caught her eye. When he wasn’t staring at Mistress Peace, his head hid behind a large drawing pad, which made him seem very creepy indeed. Already in a bad mood, she thundered across the café towards the young man, but was pleasantly surprised to find flattering drawings of her in said pad. “Is this supposed to be me? I’m touched. These are good … I mean, Marvel, DC Comics good. Are you a professional?”

“I wish,” the young man’s face reddened from the attention his work received, “there’s too much competition and corporate censorship out there, so you have to create your own opportunities.” He then nervously extended a hand to be shaken. “I’m Vinnie Frizzelle.”

“Mistress P — Sarah. I’m Sarah Manlove.”

Sarah lived in Las Vegas with her friend Matt Goad in his two bedroom home for five years, and in all that time, she never brought a man back to the house (Matt has, but Sarah hasn’t). However, it’s been a long time since Lumumba and Vinnie did have a certain way about him …

… less than a month later, Sarah beseeched Matt to let Vinnie move in with them. “He doesn’t have much; just his art supplies and a computer. Everything else would stay in his van–”

“Lord have mercy, do you hear yourself?” Matt threw his hands in the air out of frustration. “Don’t you think this is a LITTLE fast? Besides, I got a bad feeling about this one. He has a problem making eye contact with me.”

“Probably because he’s afraid you’ll come on to him.”

“Cute, Sarah, real cute …” Matt folded his arms across the chest in angst “… fine, whatever. Let Michelangelo bunk with you, but at the first sign of trouble or homophobia, he’s out like roller disco.”

As the expression goes, for one brief, shining moment, Camelot: Though Vinnie wasn’t the lover or orator Lumumba had been, he made Sarah feel special. For while she was tantalized by Lumumba’s historical reminders of how black male/white female relationships were once verboten, Vinnie geniunely worshipped her. In a world where Mistress Peace was either a sex object or a freakish pariah, the superheroine felt like a mythic goddess in Vinnie’s presence — such a rare and precious thing stroked a previously untouched ego …

Except Vinnie never let Sarah see what he worked on. There was a lot of vague talk of making Mistress Peace famous but nothing more, and then the day came when curiousity took hold as it did with Eve in the garden of Eden — only this time it was for the best. “What the Hell — VINNIE ..!”

When Vinnie rushed into Sarah’s bedroom, his mouth gaped open upon seeing what she had been doing. “Why are you looking at my laptop? I told you not to–”

“Is this a porn site with Mistress Peace on it?!”

Matt Goad happened to be in the hallway when Sarah shrieked and poked his head in her doorway to eavesdrop . “Here we go …”

“Honey, I’m not done with it yet,” Vinnie implored, “it was going to be a surprise.”

“Well, here’s another surprise, get out! Get out of my room, my house and my life! We’re done!”

“Look, I don’t see the big deal,” Vinnie’s tone shifted from atoning to assertive, “you parade around in skin-tight … TIGHTS; you show off how well endowed you are for all the world to see, so why not take it one step further?”

“Because it’s my body and my choice, you prick!” Sarah now stood nose to nose with Vinnie. “YOU NEVER ASKED ME FOR MY PERMISSION! Don’t you think I’ve thought of this myself already? Sure, porn makes tens of billions of dollars every year, and yes, the left-wing would benefit immensely from that much money, but those savage ignoramuses at FOX News would have a fucking field day if it ever came out that the peace movement was being funded by something pornographic! Maybe, one day, yeah, but not now; not when it looks like we’ll have to wade through another four years of that inbred, retarded puppet of the oil industry!”

“Who said anything about funding the movement?” Vinnie’s eyes took on a sinister glimmer. “With as much money as I could make, we could move out of here and get a bigger place; even a mansion.”

“Y-You said you understood and cared about what I’m trying to do, you … ” Sarah’s teeth clenched tightly while both fists balled up and trembled in anticipation by her side.

“If I were you,” Matt intervined at this point, “I’d move out of here and get that bigger place RIGHT NOW, before he strikes you down where you stand.”

“Shut up, fag,” Vinnie didn’t even bother turning his head to smugly address Matt, “nobody’s talking to you.”

And with that, Sarah reached back and slammed a haymaker punch directly onto Vinnie’s glass jaw, knocking the artist out cold for hours. When Vinnie awoke, hastily broken pieces of his computer were strewn about on the pavement around him. After dark, somewhere in the bad part of town, he was also bound, gagged and completely naked with a cardboard sign fastened around the neck, which read, “FRESH MEAT.”

The bad news is, due to the First Amendment, the Get a Piece of Miss Peace’s Ass website is still online and is viewed by hundreds of thousands every other day. The good news is, thanks to some friends of Matt’s in the entertainment industry, Mistress Peace was able to tell her side of the story to tens of millions worldwide on an episode of Oprah. The name of the game is FAME.

April 5th, 2009

Mistress Peace awoke from her rather long flashback immersed in garbage. It was dawn the next morning and the drunken frat boys from Alpha Beta House who intended on gang raping a superheroine had long since forgotten about the act of evil they were going to commit; each were probably mired in a (hopefully very painful) hangover early that Sunday .

That evening, Sarah Manlove spoke before a group of girls who strove to be apprentices, of a sort. “… and that’s why, if you’re going to do this, you HAVE to use the buddy system and you HAVE to have a cell phone on you AT ALL TIMES. I know y’all think what I do is glamorous because you saw me on Oprah, and yes, there is that aspect to it, but always remember this ain’t about you and it certainly ain’t about your vanity or your comfort level. This is about the future of Humanity. Sex sells, this is true, but sex can also be a dangerous weapon, and if you don’t know how to use it — and use it well — it can misfire in your hand just like any malfunctioning gun. Beauty is power, and with great power, must come great responsibility. So whenever you’re out there dressed as superheroines (or other, similar characters) raising funds for good causes, you’re doing battle with the forces of evil — and as is the case with any battle, your weapon can mean the difference between life and death …”

The ladies in their late teens and early twenties studiously took notes while Sarah took a moment to gaze through a window of the room in the library she had reserved for this meeting. Her fingers gently ran along the side of a cheekbone; feeling for the faint wrinkles which were noticed after a long shower earlier. Though Sarah had yet to reach 40, it was best to find successors sooner rather than later. Strength in numbers, and all that.

There are those who believe — usually to rationalize a harsh past — that obstacles in life are necessary in order to strengthen the Human condition. Whenever Sarah hears some variation of this Nietzschean notion, she can’t help but cry and almost did in front of her assembled young charges. Surely, the strange case of Sarah Manlove accounted for some good in this world, but it wasn’t worth all the pain, so she sincerely hoped that those who took her place would be spared what Mistress Peace endured.


“You sit there a slave to fashion, sigh, and say to me, ‘I don’t want to spend my life fighting for a change that may never happen.’ MEANWHILE … as another victim dies from starvation in exchange for your ‘sense of style,’ I hope you wanting to hasten the death of your own life is worth murdering others.”
–from Raw Knowledge’s poem, Fashion Starvation, in the book Molotov Mouths by Manic D Press

“Cautious, careful people — always casting about to preserve their reputation and social standing — never can bring about a reform.”
–Susan B. Anthony



Wonder Woman: It WAS a Man’s World

It WAS a Man’s World
by Saab Lofton

“I became a feminist as an alternative to becoming a masochist.”
–Sally Kempton

There wasn’t a cloud in the sky on that balmy spring day and yet there had been just enough wind to keep the many flags in front of the United Nations building waving. Delegates from dozens of countries milled about as they discussed various issues of the day; an ambassador from East Timor argued with an Indonesian over the latter’s oppression of the former while a similar debate raged between an Israeli and a Palestinian. However, business as usual came to an abrupt halt once the front door slammed wide open and a phalanx of statuesque women in ancient Grecian armor filed in to form a gauntlet down its central hall. Each held a shield adorned with a golden eagle with one hand and wielded a seven foot long spear with the other.

When U.N. security made the mistake of attempting to dispel the aforementioned gauntlet formation, they were either ignored or sent sprawling to the floor with a quick smack to the head — and before reinforcements could arrive to arrest these ladies in arms, it became apparent that their intention had been to clear a path for the woman who commanded them: A flawless beauty wearing a tiara and draped in an indigo, star spangled, ceremonial gown then stepped in from outside and regally strolled between the two rows of armored maidens with a stern expression on her lovely face until she reached the speaker’s podium within the U.N.’s general assembly. Initially, the sight of such a procession disturbed those in attendance but everyone began to settle down soon enough once this dignitary was recognized.

“I’m Princess Diana of Themyscira, but you’re probably more familiar with the title the media gave me, Wonder Woman.”

A hush fell over the crowd upon hearing this, except an anonymous individual cried out at that moment, “I love you!”

“I love you too,” Wonder Woman replied with a faint, half hearted smile, “and don’t mind my Amazon sisters; so as long they’re not provoked you’ll be fine. Anyway, I’m here to petition for Themyscira’s admittance as a member state …” For the better part of an hour, she proceeded to make her case, but afterwards, several delegates and members of the press trepidatiously approached the Amazons surrounding the princess with a barrage of questions (or complaints).

“How can you claim to be for equal rights when you don’t allow any men to go to Paradise Island?” A correspondent from FOX News demanded to know.

“Paradise Island?” Wonder Woman’s head cocked to one side in confusion.

“Oh, yeah,” the correspondent sneered, “any place with thousands of hotties like you running around in loincloths all day must be paradise!”

“As I explained on stage,” Wonder Woman narrowed her eyes and glared, “it’s because of our sacred covenant with the goddesses of Olympus; after Heracles seduced and betrayed my mother, Queen Hippolyta, the Amazons were enslaved — so as penance, every Amazon must wear these invulnerable bracelets as an eternal reminder of how men once bound us and we can’t ever let so much as one man set a single foot on Themyscira. Ever.”

“Or else ..?”

“Or else we’ll begin to age — and since we haven’t aged in over a millennia, we’d soon wither to dust …” One could tell Wonder Woman felt uncomfortable revealing such a thing.

“Are you trying to claim that Heracles, Mount Olympus and all those other Greek myths are real?” A reporter from the Christian Science Monitor glowered.

“I’m not telling you what to believe,” Wonder Woman assured, “I’m only saying what we believe.”

“So how old are you, anyway?”

“Three thousand, two hundred and sixty,” Wonder Woman responded nonchalantly but was then stunned to find that her answer caused jaws to drop and eyes to widen in astonishment, “what? I’m serious.”

“Are you also serious about taking in female refugees from war zones?” A woman from CNN wondered. “Given the amount of atrocities committed against women, Themyscira might find itself completely overwhelmed.”

“Not really, since those who agree to live with us must be willing to leave their husbands and sons behind,” Wonder Woman replied, “but you’re right, it is a concern, which is exactly why we applied for member status; the United Nations has the necessary infrastructure to screen applicants for amnesty and–”

“–you’re trying to steal our women away,” an Islamic emissary from the United Arab Emirates interrupted and pointed an accusing finger at the princess, “so you can make lesbians out of them!”

Wonder Woman sighed and rolled her eyes. “As part of our sacred covenant, all Amazons must remain celibate, so to us, sexual orientation is irrelevant. Besides, they’re not ‘your’ women to begin with!”

“No sex? Well, so much for it being Paradise Island!” That FOX correspondent quipped.

“I think that’s all for now …” With a slight gesture, an irritated Wonder Woman instructed the Amazons under her command to head for the nearest exit.

Days later, a psychotic genius of a scientist named Winslow Schott — also known as the Toyman — unleashed an onslaught of what appeared to be an army of wind up soldiers, except they were far from mere playthings; each doll was equipped with a miniature rifle which actually fired live rounds …

… and even though these bullets were smaller than seeds, the wounds caused by them proved to be most lethal, which is why the Justice League had been called in: Batman deduced where Schott’s laboratory was hidden and apprehended the nefarious inventor. The Flash ran in and out of the line of fire in order to rescue would be targets in the blink of an eye so no one else would die. Superman hovered overhead and incinerated entire platoons of toy soldiers from afar with beams of heat vision. Aquaman summoned a colossal octopus from the seven seas’ darkest depths to wait by the docks with its maw gaped open so it could swallow those so-called toys which had been smashed by Wonder Woman.

“This hardly seems worthy of us,” Wonder Woman lamented as she deflected tiny-yet-deadly bullets with those bracelets of hers, “granted, only we can handle a supervillain like the Toyman, but there are so many other, bigger dangers that deserve our attention. For instance, did you know that domestic violence is the number one health risk for women between 15 and 44?”

“Not to mention all the pollution in the ocean,” Aquaman added as he telepathically ordered that sea creature to use its tentacles to scoop up and consume hundreds of toy soldiers, “I just hope eating these things doesn’t upset its stomach.”

“I heard that!” After discerning what was said with his peerless hearing, Superman descended from where he had been hovering and joined the conversation. “Need I remind you two that we’re not supposed to interfere with the destiny of Humanity; if the Human race chooses to end domestic violence or to stop polluting the ocean, that’s great, but those are things Humans can do themselves — without the interference of superpowered beings …”

“That’s not fair,” Wonder Woman crumpled a stray toy soldier with her bare hand into a ball, “mortals may be willing but they’re usually not able to solve these problems! We have to ‘interfere,’ as you put it!”

The Flash had been shuttling back and forth from the city streets littered with the remnants of toy soldiers to the waterfront so he too could hurl them down the throat of Aquaman’s leviathan, but then came his childish addition to this discourse: “Is Wonder Woman trying to get us into politics again? Enough with the preaching, reverend!”

“Shut up, Wally!” Out of frustration, Wonder Woman inadvertently committed a major faux pas by publicly referring to the Flash by his secret identity.

Superman then landed by Wonder Woman’s side and laid a consoling hand on her shoulder. “Remember that African American superhero, Black Lightning? Well, don’t repeat his mistake; he tried to provide free electricity for the ghetto one winter and got burnt out,” Superman sounded ominous, “in more ways than one.”

The thought of what happened to their fallen comrade caused Wonder Woman to lower her head in sorrow.

“We have to strike a balance between protecting people and becoming too great a force in their lives,” Superman appealed to Wonder Woman’s sense of restraint, “legally speaking, we’re essentially vigilantes, so the last thing we need is for people to be afraid that the Justice League will overstep its bounds and take over–”

“–all right, all right,” Wonder Woman cut him off and fanned her hands as if in an act of surrender, “you’ve made your point, Kal-El.”

“Please don’t call me that,” Superman looked around to see if any of the citizenry were within earshot, “by some one-in-a-million fluke, Kryptonians happen to resemble Humans, and I’m sure that’s why my father sent me here, but I prefer to blend in; I don’t like reminding people that I’m from another planet.”

Once the last of the toy soldiers were devoured by the monstrous mollusk Aquaman beckoned, Wonder Woman left the scene to be alone — she couldn’t literally fly the way Superman can, but those slim, shapely legs were paradoxically powerful enough to jump a mile into the air and a few miles in front of her …

… leaping in this manner was how Wonder Woman gained an aerial view of a schoolyard beating in progress. From what her heightened eyesight could tell, a little girl was being accosted by several male bullies, so she came to a nearby landing and thoroughly frightened those ruffians in the process.

“I know you boys don’t want to take me on.” Wonder Woman went out of her way to come across as intimidating as possible.

As the scared rascals scattered in every direction, the Princess of Themyscira knelt before the girl and politely extended her hand so it could be shaken. “My name is Diana, what’s yours?”

“D-Deborah,” the pre-teen responded with apprehension while dutifully returning the handshake.

“Well, Deborah, I don’t think they’ll be bothering you again.”

“You’re wrong, they will!” Deborah spat back with contempt. “And you’re not going to be around to save me when they do, Wonder Woman! God! I hate being a girl!” She then angrily spun on her heel and stormed off.

Wonder Woman slowly rose from where she had been kneeling and nursed the pain of a broken heart — Deborah’s brutal honesty (not to mention that unfortunate self-hatred) wounded her more than any supervillain ever could. So the Amazon resolved that, come what may, something would be done about it.

Over the next couple of months, Wonder Woman abstained from attending Justice League meetings and extracted the absolute most out of her celebrity status as not only a superheroine but a head of state so she could promote a unique brand of militant feminism. If advertisements needed to be paid for, items from Themyscira’s vast treasury (usually an ancient Grecian vase or statue) would be sold to a museum. If a talk show reached a nationwide audience, an appearance was made, and on such a show, an explanation of the Amazon’s stances had been offered …

“Yes, I’m well aware of how some men view me and that’s fine — so long as they look with their eyes and not with their hands; I don’t want to have to put anyone in the hospital,” Wonder Woman felt ever so slightly self-conscious about the revealing ensemble she wore, “in case you’re wondering, I wear this as often as I do because it’s easier to maneuver in during a fight.”

“I see,” Oprah Winfrey nodded as she stroked her chin, “so do you have a problem with prostitution or pornography?”

“So long as it’s limited to consenting adults, no,” Wonder Woman all but blushed, “but for the benefit of women who do not befit the dominant cultural beauty standard, there needs to be a lot more options than simply being pretty. Women are half of this planet’s population and yet less than 20 female world leaders are in power. We only hold 16% of the seats in the United States Congress, a measly 3% of the positions of actual clout in the media, less than 10% of sports is devoted to female athletes, and of the 250 top grossing movies produced in the past year, a sparse 7% were directed by women.”

“So what’s to be done about this?”

“Effective immediately, Amazon soldiers will be available in every major city to teach martial arts to any woman who wishes to learn, since a lot of our problem stems from a dangerous lack of self-esteem; a woman who can defend herself is obviously less likely to doubt her ability to achieve great things,” Wonder Woman clenched her fist as a show of strength, “further more, the Amazons under my command will also be stationed in key strategic locations which are notorious for acts of violence against women — namely the Congo, where warring gangs rape women at whim, and of course, parts of the Middle East …”

The live studio audience seemed aghast by this.

“Is Themyscira declaring war on Africa and Islam?” Oprah stammered.

“Not at all,” Wonder Woman took a breath before continuing, “but we will serve as, for lack of a better word, bodyguards and offer protection to any woman who needs it since the police of these countries clearly haven’t been able to get the job done.”

“So you’re taking the law into your own hands.”

“No, I’m upholding the law,” Wonder Woman insisted, “as I always have.”

The Princess of Themyscira didn’t simply assign Amazons to defend women around the world. Being the most powerful amongst them — gifted by the goddesses of Olympus as Wonder Woman was — she led by example and took an active part in her campaign. However, doing so triggered an international incident.

The U.S. State Department estimates that 700,000 to 2 million women and girls (some as young as five) are smuggled across borders each year and bought or sold for sexual purposes. Shocking in scope, this modern day slavery is not only one of the most horrific Human rights issues of our time, it’s also a significant health issue, since such enslavement hastens the spread of AIDS and other diseases. Eastern Europe has emerged as a major point of origin for the burgeoning black market that auctions women and children as if they are chattel. Human traffickers have little trouble maneuvering in places where it’s easy to bribe underpaid customs officers and that’s how the trouble started …

… in the small, impoverished country of Moldova — sandwiched between Romania and Ukraine — Wonder Woman discovered a brothel which doubles as a hub for the aforementioned trafficking. The plan had been to free the females trapped within it, but the problem was what passed for a police force had been so well bribed that it actually protected this house of ill repute …

… and when, one night, she easily tossed aside the police officers who stood between her and that den of iniquity, the Moldovan government contacted the Justice League with the claim that a supervillainess had been wrecking havoc.

By the time Wonder Woman could locate and liberate the teenagers who were locked in a dark, filthy cellar below the bordello, she heard a familiar voice blare from above. “Diana, this ends now! Come on out! You know you can’t hide from my X-Ray vision!”

The Princess of Themyscira emerged with a dozen tortured girls in tow and she even held one of them in her arms. “Let me guess: The Moldovans told you I attacked the police, well, it’s not that simple–”

“–I don’t want to hear it,” Superman landed with a thud as the Flash’s rapid approach on foot screeched to a halt, and in the distance, Batman lurked amidst the shadows, “it’s bad enough your Amazons have been viciously assaulting alleged Congolese rapists–”

“–not one of them have died,” Wonder Woman was quick to point out.

“That’s good , but that’s not the point,” Superman grimaced with chagrin, “you’ve crossed the line and I’ve got orders to bring you in for questioning.”

As fate would have it, the so-called “massage parlor” happened to be near the Dniester River, which leads directly to the Black Sea, so Aquaman had access to the water. Once she noticed that he too had come to arrest her, Wonder Woman appealed to the only other beneficiary of Greek mythology.

“Aquaman, you’ve been blessed by Poseidon just as I’ve been blessed by Hera, Athena and Aphrodite — so you of all people should understand the ideals I’m fighting for,” Wonder Woman implored, “besides, how much garbage and toxic waste did you have to swim through in order to get here?”

“Forget it, lady,” the Flash smugly smirked, “Aquaman’s not going to take your side!”

A tense moment passed before Aquaman broke the silence. “I won’t side with you, Diana, but I don’t have to fight you either.” And with that, the King of Atlantis dove back into the river and headed towards the sea.

“I’ll get him,” Superman took to the air after Aquaman but gave the following order prior to departing, “don’t let her leave.”

“Listen to me, my little Amazons,” Wonder Woman spoke to the abused teens in flawless Moldovan, “I want you to run as fast as you can and find someplace safe to hide. It’s about to get very nasty here.”

As the twelve traumatized adolescents scrambled in search of safety and seclusion, Wonder Woman stood alone against two of her teammates. “Wally? Bruce? I’m begging you: Don’t do this.”

“I don’t care if none of these people speak English,” the Flash growled, “Batman and I wear masks for a reason; quit calling us by our real names in public!” Wonder Woman suddenly found herself in the center of a cyclone because the Flash ran around her in a circular manner. She soon started to float a bit due to the centrifugal force and even felt light headed since the vortex’s vacuum deprived the area of air.

Wonder Woman might have passed out from a lack of oxygen had it not been for her Lasso of Truth — knowing that the Flash needed both feet on the ground for his superspeed to be effective, she cast that lariat forth until it tripped him. From there, she quickly hog tied the scarlet speedster so he wouldn’t be able to gain any footing …

… and courtesy of the lasso’s mystical properties, the Flash began babbling about how he always secretly lusted after Wonder Woman …

“Well, that leaves you, Batman !” Wonder Woman called out. “I know you’re skulking in the darkness out there!” She peered deeply into the hilly forests surrounding the illegal brothel and realized that a stealthy master of ninjutsu such as the caped crusader could be hiding anywhere …

… that’s how he was able to catch her by surprise — after sneaking up from behind, Batman managed to spray a paste onto Wonder Woman’s bracelets. “According to ‘Aphrodite’s Law,’ you’ll lose your strength if you’re chained by a male,” Batman gloated.

“It’s all about the letter of the law with you, isn’t it, Bruce?” Wonder Woman examined the adhesive which bound her wrists together. “Well, it’s all about the letter of the law with Amazons as well. You said it yourself: ‘Chained,’ not glued!” The Princess of Themyscira then snapped the strands of plaster Batman had applied, and with a sharp jab, she rendered him unconscious.

Aquaman can swim almost as fast as Superman can fly, so it took some time for the Kryptonian to catch up with the Atlantean. Once he did — somewhere off the eastern coast of Bulgaria — the man of steel pleaded for the marine marvel to cease this dereliction of duty, but to no avail. In fact, Aquaman resented the attempt, so the two of them wrestled in the depths of the Black Sea until it occurred to him that Batman and the Flash might need his help.

Much as it pained Superman to do so, he released the ocean overlord and flew back to Moldova — where a brief perusal with his telescopic vision allowed him to see a pair of masked compatriots sprawled across the terrain in defeat. “You may have beaten them, Diana, but you won’t beat me!”

Wonder Woman was not looking forward to this: In anticipation of such an encounter, she contemplated acquiring a fragment of Kryptonite — the radioactive remains of Superman’s lost homeworld — except someone as honorable as her had no desire to murder Earth’s greatest protector, so one of the most colossal battles in history would be fought on Moldovan soil.

Each punch produced a sonic boom and every slam to the ground felt like a quake. In terms of sheer brute force, both opponents were evenly matched because of something the Princess of Themyscira was hesitant to admit: According to myth, her mother, Queen Hippolyta, had been “seduced” by Heracles, but what isn’t mentioned was the daughter begat from that tragic union and this accounted for the strength she wielded.

Upon realizing how much of a stalemate this conflict was becoming, Superman reluctantly decided to use powers he possessed that she didn’t, such as heat vision, which burned her severely. “Aarrrgh!”

“Have you … had enough?” Superman gasped from exhaustion and struggled to keep from doubling over. “If you don’t stand down … I’ll freeze you … with my superbreath.”

“Assuming you can catch your breath,” Wonder Woman cradled a scalded leg but maintained a defiant stance, “do your worst, Kal-El.”

“You know … I won’t kill you,” Superman asserted between feeble attempts to deeply inhale, “you’ll just be frozen … in suspended animation … and I’ll defrost you … after you’re in custody.”

However, before the last son of Krypton could collect enough air in his lungs to blow a sufficiently icy blast at the Princess of Themyscira, he couldn’t help but notice that at least a hundred heavily armed Amazons in full body armor were heading straight for him. While they couldn’t leap as high or as far as their commander, it didn’t take long for them to surround the Kryptonian.

With dozens of magically enhanced swords and spears aimed at him, Superman surrendered and fell to his knees. “Well, I suppose … the Calvary has arrived …”

“I’m not about going to jail because I fought some corrupt police officers who’re in the pocket of sex traffickers,” Wonder Woman found it hard to stand on her burnt limb but did so anyway since the Amazons she commanded were watching, “and while I’ve got your full attention, let me tell you something: You once said you prefer to blend in; that you don’t like reminding people that you’re from another planet. Well, that’s selfish and inconsiderate of you! As bad as pale skinned women have it, tan and brown skinned women have it ten times worse, but if people were reminded that we’re not alone; that aliens like you do in fact exist outside of science fiction, then that would unite the Human race!”

“You don’t understand … after I made my first public appearance,” Superman continued to nurse his bruises, “after Lois Lane reported … that I was from Krypton … a Ku Klux Klansman … was so distraught … that he committed suicide …”

“So?” Wonder Woman angrily limped towards the fallen Kryptonian. “One inbred retard kills himself because he can’t handle finding out that white men don’t rule the universe and you use his worthless ass as an excuse to cover up the truth? Some hero you are! Well, I’m going to the media and I’m telling everybody!”

“Don’t do it,” Superman tried to rise so he could stop Wonder Woman but all those Amazons kept him in check, “telling the public … that aliens exist … could cause a riot …”

Without acknowledging Superman’s warning, Wonder Woman wearily staggered into the Moldovan horizon.