'Marvel’s M.O.D.O.K’: The Comics That Inspired Season 1
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While M.O.D.O.K. might be off-the-wall bonkers at certain points, yes, many of these outlandish characters and situations were pulled right from the Marvel Universe! Before tackling the series, the writers and creative team behind M.O.D.O.K. dove into the source material — Marvel Comics.
Co-creator and showrunner Jordan Blum gave Marvel.com a glimpse into just some of the issues that inspired each of the 10 episodes, now streaming on Hulu. And yes, the Ciegrimites really are a real thing in the comics.
Dive into the inspiration behind Season 1 from Blum below. Marvel’s M.O.D.O.K. is now streaming on Hulu.
Episode 1 - “IF THIS BE … M.O.D.O.K.!”
The title of the pilot “If This Be… M.O.D.O.K.” is a reference to the title of TALES OF SUSPENSE #94, M.O.D.O.K.’s first appearance by Stan Lee and Jack Kirby. We felt we had to pay tribute to “the Man” and “the King” right out the gate.
Austin takes M.O.D.O.K. to the Kree amphitheater to see intergalactic rock star Lila Cheney. The name of the tour she’s on is “Steal This Planet” which is also the title to Lila’s first appearance in NEW MUTANTS ANNUAL #1 by Chris Claremont and Bob McLeod. It’s a great story where innocent, wide-eyed Cannonball falls for bad girl, rock star/thief Lila.
There are many good Fin Fang Foom stories (another Kirby creation) but the best has to be NEXTWAVE: THE AGENTS OF H.A.T.E. #2 by Warren Ellis and Stuart Immonen where he threatens to put people in his pants. Nextwave is easily one of the funniest books Marvel has ever published.
Episode 2 - “THE M.O.D.O.K. THAT TIME FORGOT!”
While on the S.H.I.E.L.D Helicarrier M.O.D.O.K. comes across Cerebro, the device currently helping mutants defeat death in the HOUSE OF X / POWERS OF X era by Jonathan Hickman, Pepe Larraz, and R.B. Silva.
Episode 3 - BEWARE WHAT FROM PORTAL COMES!”
The Ciegrimites were a deep pull we found in the Marvel Handbook. These anthropomorphic snail aliens were described as “hedonistic, master distillers from a Laissez-faire democracy.” They first appeared in HERCULES: PRINCE OF POWER #4 by Bob Layton where they tried to get Galactus drunk.
Episode 4 - “IF SATURDAY BE… FOR THE BOYS!”
This episode set in the Bar With No Name is a love letter to writer Mark Gruenwald, who created the bar as well as characters like Poundcakes and Tenpin. Armadillo, my personal favorite D-lister, first appeared in CAPTAIN AMERICA #308 by Gruenwald and Paul Neary. Gruenwald High appears in this episode as the name of Poundcake’s high school.
Eagle eye viewers will spot tons of easter eggs in the pawnshop like Dazzler’s skates, a Bamf doll, and Attuma’s helmet. Speaking of Easter eggs, did you catch the “Yancy Street Gang” graffiti on the subway? They’ve been menacing the ever-lovin' blue-eyed Thing since FANTASTIC FOUR #15 by Stan Lee and Jack Kirby.
Lou gets stuck in the A.I.M. “Teen Zone” with Monica’s daughter Carmilla, who fans might recognize as Carmilla Black AKA The Scorpion from AMAZING FANTASY #7 by Fred Van Lente and Leonard Kirk. We gave Carmilla a Scorpion necklace as an ode to her comic counterpart.
Episode 5 - “IF BUREAUCRACY BE THY DEATH!”
M.O.D.O.K. and Monica go to war in this episode but their rivalry is perfectly established in one of my all-time favorite comics, SUPER-VILLAIN TEAM-UP / M.O.D.O.K.’s 11 #1 by Fred Van Lente and Francis Portela.
Episode 6 - “TALES FROM THE GREAT BAR-MITZVAH WAR!”
M.O.D.O.K. and Lou go to Asgard in this one. Lauren Otero, the writer of this episode asked what Thor to read for reference. There’s only one correct answer: Walt Simonson. Specifically THOR #380.
Episode 7 - “THIS MAN… THIS MAKEOVER!”
Wonder Man flies by a billboard for his new movie Brute Force 2: Kangarude Awakening. Like Paul Scheer, I share a love of these Marvel oddities who first appeared in BRUCE FORCE #1 by Simon Furman and Jose Delbo.
Episode 8 - “O, WERE BLOOD THICKER THAN ROBOT JUICE!”
Arcade! Murderworld! Deathtraps! We all read UNCANNY X-MEN #163 by Chris Claremont and John Byrne to inspire the insanity of this episode.
Episode 9 - “WHAT MENACE DOTH THE MAILMAN DELIVER!"
Nothing is ever what it seems in the Marvel Universe and having GRUMBL be a shell company for the sentient, planet devouring Hexus the Living Corporation was something we were very excited about. Especially since the character was invented by my favorite writer, Grant Morrison, from MARVEL BOY #3, the series they created with J.G. Jones.
Episode 10 - DAYS OF FUTURE M.O.D.O.K.S”
In this episode, YODOK (our younger version of M.O.D.O.K. and big bad) dons a familiar armor, proportional to his head size. You might recognize it from INCREDIBLE HULK #167 by Steve Englehart and Herb Trimpe.
All 10 episodes of Marvel’s M.O.D.O.K. are now streaming, only on Hulu.
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