Obscure SuperHero Quarterly Volume One May 2013 â€œAll about the Capeâ€? Editor Stephanie Beck
Contributors Court Schwarzhoff Olivia Starke Kate Richards Stephanie Beck
All rights reserved. No parts of this publication may be duplicated without consent of editor and contributing authors. Copyright Stephanie Beck 2013 www.stephaniebeck.net email@example.com
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Editor’s Corner Capes: Necessary Evil or Just Evil? Stephanie Beck From the moment Johnny Jump Up made his miraculous leap into the air and did not come down—humans have looked to the sky for superheroes. And they’ve expected those superheroes to wear capes. Long ones, short ones—capes of all colors and styles have come to personify the nature of the superhero. For good and for bad—the cape says something to everyone. Our multi-talented team has searched out the details of the often debated garment. Fabulous guest authors Kate Richards, Court Schwarzhoff and Olivia Starke lend their talent to this edition of OSHQ, and I couldn’t be happier. I hope you enjoy this edition of Obscure Superhero Quarterly and many more to come! All the best,
Stephanie Beck www.stephaniebeck.net
History Corner Startling Discovery! Kate Richards Dateline, Deepest, Darkest Borneo
While traveling in the jungles of Northern Indonesia, Mr. and Mrs. Teddy Q. Sandoval, wandered off from their tour group for a little kissy face/huggy bear and were taken captive by a band of local tribespeople with perfectly styled hair and elastic garments in bright colors worn with gleaming knee high boots. The honeymooners, bound by glowing bands of electric green rope, were forced up the side of an active volcano. Here is Mrs. Sandoval’s version of what happened next. Be warned…this is not for the faint of heart: “My wonderful husband and I were forced up the side of an active volcano, while oddly scented ash fell over us. We agreed later that it smelled exactly like warm chocolate pudding. Or maybe chocolate fudge, but definitely not milk chocolate. As we passed the tree line, it became heavier, clinging to our hair and clothing. But, oddly, it fell away from the natives’ garb and their hair, leaving it gleaming in the dusky light. “We were terrified, especially Teddy, the poor dear, but we had no choice but to go along. I was sure they were going to toss us into the boiling lava. I wondered if it would taste like pudding or maybe it would be like really hot whipped cream. Either way, we would not survive it. “As we reached the lip, the chap in charge, I never did get his name, continued on down into the magma chamber. We were shoved after by a very big man in blue and green striped tights who had no manners whatsoever and then stumbled down a set of steps carved into the wall. Below us bubbled a morass of what was absolutely chocolate fudge pudding with streaks of what we believed were marshmallow, a cauldron guaranteed to peel the skin from our bones if we strayed from the path. “As my hair frizzed—but not that of the tribespeople—into a clownish halo around my face, we followed the leader into a tunnel. I’ve been told it was probably a lava tube. We walked a long time.” At this point, I asked Mr. Sandoval to cut to the chase. “Certainly, if you don’t want the fascinating details. My wife and I eventually reached a small cave where all the natives clustered and began to chant. They opened a box and drew out a cape.” Yes, folks. You guessed it! Mr. and Mrs. Sandoval discovered the cape lost by the Amazing Conductive Boy while exploring the islands in 1937. Their garments were based upon its colorful and
stretchy designs and, while they did not have the magical properties of the cape itself, the fabulous piece of electric green, red, blue, and yellow plaid fabric changed an entire culture. The Amazing Conductive Boy, or Sam Oldman, is even now on his way to Borneo to see if he can get close enough to the cape to recover it. After decades of living as an ordinary citizen, will the Amazing Conductive Boy fly again? Will his powers be enough to handle modern electrical grids? And why did the natives let the Sandovals see their treasure and go free? Only the Great Org knows the answer, but we will keep you updated!
About the Author
Kate Richards is a multi-published author living in Southern California with her wonderful husband and menagerie of pets. She loves exploring all kinds of relationships in her stories, because everyone deserves a happily ever after, and no two relationships are the same.
Psst...Style Ahead! Cape Shoppers Gear up for Hot Friday
By Court Schwarzhoff
As the summer months approach, youngsters and grown-ups alike are getting ready to store their heavy winter capes and put on their lightweight summer ones. For many, this doesn’t mean merely pulling a few hangers out from the back of your closet. In fact, nearly 75% of cape users will be buying new capes for the upcoming season. Transitioning into summer capes has notoriously been a busy shopping time. Every year brings new styles and all new styles are part of a limited edition collection; all collections become available in stores at the same time. “It’s the equivalent to Black Friday for all of the after Thanksgiving shoppers.” Says Amber Broach, co-owner of Spellman’s Cloaks ‘N More, off of 4th St. and Cyprus Ave. “People line up outside of our shop sometimes days in advance, it’s fun to see the designs before everyone else, I’m never disappointed.” The big day Broach was referring to is the third Friday of every April, appropriately named Hot Friday. All stores open at 9 a.m. and the newest collections are released at sale price. The only day capes are sale priced during the season. “By the end of the day our store looks like a battle scene,” says Broach, “it always takes the whole weekend to clean the store back up, but the community awareness and profits make the lost weekend worth it.” Why not just use the same cape more than one year? The answer, lies within the fabric. “Winter capes must be durable, they have to withstand the elements and keep their user warm, naturally, they last longer.” Said independent cape designer Jonny Pax, “Unfortunately, the same can’t be said for the summer line. Summer capes are made out of vulnerable materials, such as: tulle, gauze, cotton and on the very cheap end, cheesecloth. These fabrics are ideal for heat control, but catch easily on corners and tear throughout everyday life. I can’t even tell you how many capes I have torn on tree branches.”
With the life of the capes being so brief, many not lasting more than one season, buyers tend to be bolder with their summer cape choices than they are on their winter ones. “Designers know that summer capes make statements. They also know that they are an item that most people consider a necessity and though their time will be brief, the capes will be remembered for years to come,” said Pax. “My parents still talk about my father’s infamous cape of ’72.” Color choices get a bit bolder every year as well. “Magenta and Gold digger are the hot colors this year. I know so many designers working in a fever, all striving for the most outlandish cape design,” said Pax. About the Author Court Schwarzhoff is an aspiring book editor with a passion for photography and a love for all things green. In her spare time you can find her covered in glue and glitter as she tackles a new project or just being one of the guys as she hones her NHL ’13 skills.
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Keeping Style Super
Clean it Like a Pro Stephanie Beck It’s a familiar story. Superhero dons suit. Superhero saves the day. Superhero stops for a celebratory hotdog....superhero spills mustard.
So what happens next? I spoke with Walt Sudsman, cleaner to the superhero stars recently to get the down and dirty on how superheroes come clean.
*A good soak goes a long way. Nearly every stain, when treated with a cold water soak with your favorite detergent will help deter set in problems. *Use a napkin. No, seriously, have a napkin close at hand and catch the spill before it lands. Superheroes, especially, should be able to do this. *Separate colors from whites and double check. Nothing ruins a snow white singlet like washing it with a red mask. *Pesky stank from fighting fires? Soaking clothes in a cool bath of water and vinegar before washing normally can knock out the stink. *Whether from over ironing or running too quickly, scorching can happen. When it does, you might not be able to save the garment, but try giving it a wash and then hang it out in direct sunlight.
No desire to clean your own capes or work shirts? Head on down to Mr. Sudsman’s fine establishments—locations in downtown Silver City and Westropolis. Do you have stains? The Sudsman will send them running!
Feature—Special Guest Man of Wonder
THE GREAT CAPE DEBATE Olivia Starke
What could be more Superhero epic than the cape? As soon as children discover the magical world of Superdom, they can be found throwing a towel around their necks and flying into unforeseen adventures. Open many comics, especially those from the early to mid-20th century, and you’ll find all the Supers sporting them. It’s like your special super powers can’t be taken seriously if you’re not wearing one. But we have to ask ourselves, Is the cape essential for a superhero to do their job? We’ve stepped into the 21st century, a time of sophisticated villains using even more sophisticated measures to cause the planet huge headaches. Without backup, we’d be lost to these bad guys forever bent on world domination. As we watch Man of Wonder, Sparrow, and Esmerelde charge into battle with capes streaming behind, do we really want our 21st century heroes wearing this cliché? I thought I’d go straight to the source, and ask the man himself, Man of Wonder, about his feelings on cape wearing. Olivia: Man of Wonder, the cape is an emblem for superheroes past, once upon a time it made villains tremble in their boots. Do you still feel it does its job as an intimidation tactic? Also, would you consider doing an impromptu photo spread donning ONLY the cape? I've got my cellphone camera ready. I'm a hard hitting journalist, and I think this would really get my readers attention. I'm only thinking of them, and not myself. Not at all. Man of Wonder: The cape is a timeless element for any superhero who flies. It provides aerodynamics and protection from birds. Villains can interpret it anyway they want. If they are doing wrong, they will be taken down by a superhero with or without a cape. And as flattering as your offer is, for news reasons, naturally, I will have to decline. I'm afraid Dinah-Go prefers to be the only one to see all that's under the cape.
(Okay, I have to admit to being disappointed in not getting a few pics for you readers. I know you’d have appreciated them. But then again, I’d hate to get on Dinah-Go’s bad side—I’m a lover not a fighter.) Back to topic—I apparently misunderstood cape wearing. I honestly had assumed it only for impressing the bad guy. Intrigued, I sought out a scientist to further research aerodynamics. Physicist Dr. Maynard Mustard (pronounced Moo-stahd) happily provided me with information pertaining to capes. Dr. Mustard: After doing some experiments in the lab, we found air flowing over the cape redirects air currents. Otherwise, a Superheroes buttocks, thighs, and calves would slow Supers by milliseconds. Doesn’t sound like much, but in their line of work, it could mean the world. There you have it, readers, I can’t argue with two experts. It’s not about looks, capes really do help Superheroes do their job.
About the Author Olivia Starke lives in a little town in southern Missouri. Some of the most beautiful country in the U.S., she loves the Ozarks and hikes, runs, or kayaks whenever possible. When not working at her laptop or in her retail management job, she’s playing mom to an ever expanding collection of dogs, cats, and horses who find their way to her little farm.
She loves to hear from readers and welcomes them to email her at firstname.lastname@example.org
**Watch for Man of Wonder’s full story “Super Love” coming May 20th from Stephanie Beck and Beachwalk Press.**
Inside Scoop Inside Robby Rabbit’s Lair Stephanie Beck
Turns out Robby Rabbit actually lives underground in a Robby Rabbit sized hole. Like a rabbit. He eats a vegetable-rich organic diet and enjoys the occasional carrot. We attempted to take pictures, unfortunately none turned out. The only thing we could make out was dirt, and that was a waste of ink. Bummer.
Graphic Unavailable. Blame Robby for signing up for ‘Inside Scoop’ when his house was really a bare . hole in the ground. Superheroes. Figures.
This issue of OSHQ brought to you by: Justice Fraternity Chronicles
Super Love Coming May 20th 2013 Reuniting to save the world. Dinah just wanted to save the world. That didn't pan out, so she turned to social work, only to find herself miserable. When she's given the option of returning to the Justice Fraternity and her life as Dinah-Go, super fast superhero, she hesitates because going back means working side by side with her former lover Myles Steele, aka Man of Wonder. To save their city from gargoyles, Man of Wonder needs Dinah-Go back in fighting shape. But Myles wants more than just his fighting partner at his side, he wants the lover and friend he lost two years earlier. Getting her will take more than even his super strength.
Crypto Love Coming August 19th, 2013
Watch for Issue 2 Coming in August 2013
All rights reserved. No part of this publication may be duplicated without consent of editor and contributing authors. Copyright Stephanie Beck 2013 Cover Art and Banners by Fantasia Frog Designs Vectors purchased through VectorStock email@example.com www.stephaniebeck.net
Published on May 2, 2013
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