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Monday, January 26, 2015

The Fire and Water Podcast, Episode 114

The official podcast of THE AQUAMAN SHRINE and FIRESTORM FAN

This week we flip the script, with me being joined by special guest Max Romero to discuss one of our all-time favorite characters, that stretchable sleuth, Plastic Man!

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Closing music by Daniel Adams and Ashton Burge of The Bad Mamma Jammas! http://www.facebook.com/BadMammaJammas

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Earth 2 Chris said...

Well, that was a lot of fun. I've always liked Plas myself, so I was excited to see this episode come up.

I think the Ruby Spears show being in syndication may have been why Plas got a Super Powers figure. That, and just the name value. I never remember seeing the syndicated version, with the live actor segements (I think that's where your stinger came from?), but it was broadcast across the US, apparently.

I remember being so excited to get Super Friends #36 with Plas as guest star. I didn't know then that Fradon had drawn a Plas series before. Great stuff.

I seem to recall some heavy rumors about a Plastic Man movie starring Paul (Pee-Wee Herman) Reubens at one point. And there were the Jim Carrey rumors as well. I think Plas would make a great Pixar-like film myself.

Great show! I'm now off to check out Max's blog!


Xum Yukinori said...

Great show, Rob. And welcome, Mister Romero.

So I assume the “Groovy Plastic Man” from Earth Two visited Earth One in the Brave and the Bold #76 (which came out during this Plas’ run), where he teamed up with the Earth One Batman to fight the Molder.

Regarding your question about why the 1970s Plastic Man series picked up the numbering at 11 instead of renumbering at issue 1, I suspect is was similar to the reason The Flash started at number 105. Even in the 1970s, #1 issues did not yet have the “collector’s item” status that they have today (or was that “used to have”?). At that time the publishers may have believed that people were more likely to buy a book with a demonstrated track record than to give a brand new title a chance, hence the resumed numbering. Perhaps Bob Rozakis can validate/clarify on this…

“Weapons of Mass Distraction” is actually a team-up with Plas and Hal Jordan, not Kyle Rayner. At least that part I remember…

Some other “unseen” Plastic Man projects included plans for a live action feature movie in the mid-1990s (with a script written by the Wachowski Brothers in 1995 and, as Chris mentioned above, Paul Reubens considered for the role), as well as a Cartoon Network Plastic Man series that starred Tom Kenny (his first portrayal of Plastic Man that predates The Brave and the Bold and DC Nation); the pilot episode for the cartoon is one of the extras in the Plastic Man DVD “Complete Series” set.

And I use “Complete Series” in quotes because it is NOT the complete series. The Baby Plas (who was also voiced by Michael Bell, BTW) and Plastic Family segments are not included. However, the set does include the “spy-mission/Dick-Tracy-villain stories” that were in the first few episodes of the second season (which makes one wonder if the new direction of the show was decided after production of season two had already begun); curiously, these episodes are accompanied by the season two opener featuring the wedding to Penny and Baby Plas’ introduction. Also missing from this set is “Louse of Wax”, a short episode featuring villain Mr. Wicks that was written to be part of the ABC Saturday Morning Preview Special that aired on prime time the Sunday night before the debut of Plas’ cartoon series (the late DarkLantern referred to this as “Episode 0” of the series). Writer Mark Evanier talks about his experience of creating this hastily-created episode, and shares a vidcap from his own home-recorded copy, here:


Also, there is a lengthy interview with Michael Bell focused almost exclusively on his role as Plastic Man, conducted by someone I happen to know was very honored and humbled to speak with the very talented Mr. Bell. The interviewer also mentions some insights regarding the animated series that I happen to share. You can read that here:


Cheers, Gentlemen.

Xum Yukinori said...

Oh, and you can see more of Mark Taylor's live-action Plastic Man work, including bits that were NOT part of the syndicated show (including a very hilarious TV news magazine interview with Taylor and Plas), here:


Xum Yukinori said...

I realized my media player on my phone isn’t up to viewing the videos on http://www.plazcomedy.com, so in case the videos are also not working for you, here are direct links to the videos for:

A sampling of the live action Plas segments used in the 1980s weekday afternoon syndicated Plastic Man show:


“Evening Magazine’s” interview with Plas (on Patrol) and actor Mark Taylor (please keep in mind this was during the 1980s...):


Plas protecting the 1984 Democratic National convention (and getting a few barbs at then-President Ronald Regan in for good measure):


And a Consumer Tip just for you


(These neat little educational segments are also missing from the Complete DVD set as well)


Count Drunkula said...

Sorry it took so long to respond: this issue was fun and educational as I really didn't know that much about Plastic Man's long publication history. Max Romero always does a great job with his blog and his appearance on this episode was just as terrific.

I've always liked Plastic Man but he has a kind of strange place in my DC heart chamber. I got to know Elongated Man first and Ralph was integrated into the Justice League and the wider DC Universe much quicker and easier. So while Plastic Man debuted twenty years earlier, it always felt to me like Plas was biting on Ralph's schtick instead of the other way around.

I wish DC would really embrace the Multiverse again and put Plastic Man, Shazam!, and the Charleton heroes on another planet. Or just as good, sell the rights to those characters back to original or other publishers.

Can we please get some of these Plastic Man appearances from THE BRAVE AND THE BOLD in the next Zany Haney episode of Fire & Water?

Speaking of Brave and Bold: for Rob, the first season of Batman: The Brave and the Bold must have been manna from Heaven considering Green Arrow, Aquaman, and Plastic Man were some of the most regular guest stars with the less-Dark Knight.

Darrin said...

I don't consider myself a big Plastic Man fan, but never mind the character when he turns up. I had never seen the animated series but decided to look it up on Amazon and snagged the complete series DVD for $8 with free shipping! I'll let you know what I think.

Darrin said...

I don't consider myself a big Plastic Man fan, but never mind the character when he turns up. I had never seen the animated series but decided to look it up on Amazon and snagged the complete series DVD for $8 with free shipping! I'll let you know what I think.