(as represented in Spider-Man And Hulk Weekly #417-418)
Plot: Denny O'Neil, Jim Shooter, Mark Gruenwald
Script: Denny O'Neil, Mark Gruenwald
Layouts: John Romita Jr.
Pencils: Al Milgrom
In Spider-Man And Hulk Weekly #417 and Spider-Man And Hulk Weekly Incorporating... Team-up #418, everyone's favourite friendly neighbourhood webslinger battled Fusion – a villain who, to this commentator, appears to have maybe inspired the Warner Brothers' cartoon Pinky And The Brain.
Well, probably not, but the similarities are rather fun.
Super-intelligent Hubert Fusser works in a laboratory. Right from the outset his dialogue sounds just like the sort of wordy scientific mumbo-jumbo that the Brain regularly narrates his life with. Really – just try reading this opening lab scene, while imagining Brain's emotionless voice saying the words:
And here's the thing – clever old Hubert has a dim-witted brother, who talks in a similar way to Pinky. In fact, guess what his name is? Again, read this imagining the Pinky And The Brain voices.
Yes, not only do they operate out of a lab, posess similar levels of intelligence and relate to each other in a similarly one-sided way, but the lesser one is even named Pinky! In fact, it isn't long before, just as in the theme song, Pinky and Hubert's genes get spliced. Here however, this forges them into a single energy-absorbing baddie, known as... Fusion! (yeah, that cover above was a bit of a givaway)
It's not actually stated anywhere that Hubert is bent on trying to take over the world, but he certainly does appear to be power-mad.
As you can see, while they're merged together into a single body and whipping Spidey's hide, Pinky and the Hube keep on arguing with each other, in a manner that is not inconsistent with the two lab mice to whom I'm comparing them.
Finally, like all good Pinky and The Brain plans, it's the insane one who gets to save the day (although I accept that you might disagree which mouse that is)
And after they're defeated, I have to assume that they both return to the lab to prepare for tomorrow night, which does leave us with the same question that I opened with:
Were Marvel pondering what Warner Brothers were pondering?
I think so, Hube, but won't Spielberg notice that Keira Knightley is made of rutabagas?
They're Pinky and Hubert Fusser, Fusser, Fusser, Fusser, Fusser."