Saturday, July 23, 2011

Halk Kar and Halk-Kar

I realized recently that I've never explained the drawing of me here on my blog, or, for that matter, the name "Halk-Kar".

As I mention in the "About Me" section, I am a fan of Silver Age comics, especially in the DC line. One of my all-time favorite characters was Mon-El, a teen with basically the same powers as Superboy, who Superboy, mistakenly, initially assumed was his (Superboy's) older brother.

Many years after my first encounter with Mon-El, I discovered that, years before his entry into Superboy's life, there had been a character named Halk Kar (no hyphen), who'd appeared in Superman's life, and whose story was uncannily similar to Mon-El's.

Halk Kar struck me as a goofier, late-Golden Age version of Mon-El, so he was never really a great favorite of mine, but I did harbor some affection for the character. When I decided to start a blog, I knew that a good number of posts would probably involve comic books, so I decided I should use a comic book name, but one that was somewhat more obscure than, say, "Superman Fan" or "Green Lantern's Light", and I recalled Halk Kar of Thoron. (That's a bit of a pun, there, from the original story of Halk Kar. He came from Thoron, a planet in the same solar system as Krypton. Thoron is an isotope of Radon, and Radon and Krypton are both noble gases in the periodic table of elements.) I decided to hyphenate the name, to make it stylistically more similar to the traditional hyphenated form of Kryptonian names.

Now that you know a little about Halk Kar, I should explain the picture below:

My good friend Don and I became fast friends when we discovered a mutual love of Silver Age DC comics, and, over the years, we've spent many an hour discussing favorite stories, covers, plot points and trivia. One of the amusing discussions always centered on the fact that each person on Krypton seemed to have only a single outfit --- either that, or they each had a wardrobe of several identical outfits --- because, for example, Superman's father, Jor-El, always wore the same outfit, no matter at what point in his life we saw him, and Superman's mother Lara always wore exactly the same dress any time she appeared in a comic book. Don asked me, at one point, "What would your Kryptonian outfit look like?" I had to think carefully about that, because, according to the tradition, it would be my one and only outfit for life, and, if I should one day become a superhero, it would become my costume.

I described the outfit in such precise detail that Don's wife, Doni (Yes, really.), who is a talented artist, decided that she'd like to try to draw me in it, in classic Silver Age style. The wonderful result, a full-size poster, now hangs in my Fortress of Davidtude, and a copy of it now graces this blog.

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