Friday, February 24, 2006

Pantha's Legacy Will Never be Forgotten

I saw a thread with this title on a messageboard, and it gave me the inspiration for the following.


We walked on the beach beside that old hotel
They're tearing it down now, but it's just as well.
I haven't shown you everything a man can do
So stay with me baby, I've got plans for you

Pantha came into all of our hearts with 1991's New Titans #73, and instantly, she was everyone's favorite character.

And why not?

With winning lines like, from her second apperance, "Save your pretty speeches for the ladies club, mister. Like I said - I work alone!," who could blame us for falling in love with her feral spark?

This are the time to remember
Cause it will not last forever.
These are the days to hold onto
Cause we won't although we'll want to.
This is the time, but time is going to change.
You've given me the best of you,
And now I need the rest of you.

Soon, Pantha became an integral part of both New Titans AND our lives.

This would soon to change when she made that certain leap...the leap from classic LEGENDARY character!!

Did you know before you came into my life,
Some kind of miracle that I survived.
Someday we'll both look back and have to laugh
We lived through a lifetime and the aftermath

Soon, Pantha developed a maternal relationship with Baby Wildebeest, who was clearly the best character in New Titans.

Baby Wildebeest was a baby, which you could tell from his hiLARious dialogue.


He's saying BAUW instead of BALL!


Soon, the Pantha/Baby Wildebeest relationship would be the centerpiece of every issue of New Titans.

This are the time to remember
Cause it will not last forever.
These are the days to hold onto
Cause we won't although we'll want to.
This is the time, but time is going to change.
I know we have to move somehow,
But I don't want to lose you now.

However, while she and Baby Wildebeest were the concrete holding the book together, things were not right in the New Titans universe...

Sometimes it's so easy to let a day slip on by
Without even seeing each other at all
But this is the time you'll turn back to and so will I
And those will be the days you can never recall

Sadly, we did, indeed, let the days slip on by, and soon...

... Pantha LEFT the New Titans!!

It comes as NO surprise that the title was cancelled only about 16 issues after she left the book.

Without the center, the Titans could not hold.

And so we embrace again behind the dunes.
This beach is so cold on a winter afternoon,
But holding you close is like holding the summer sun,
All warm from the memory of days to come.

However, there were a few cameos over the years, washing me in the glow of the greatness of Pantha.

She even got a Vs. card!!

However, DC choose to spit in the face of FIFTEEN YEARS of comic book memories by, in the pages of Infinite Crisis #4, killing off both Pantha AND Baby Wildebeest!!

Why does DC continue to kill off classic characters with gigantic fan bases?

Do they WANT to piss off every fan in the business?!?

This are the time to remember
Cause it will not last forever.
These are the days to hold onto
Cause we won't although we'll want to.
This is the time, but time is going to change.
You've given me the best of you,
And now I need the rest of you.

However callous DC is now, I know that, as long as there are those of us with Pantha-love in our hearts, Pantha's legacy will NEVER be forgotten.

Besides, always try to remember what Pantha would always say..."Don't you damn fools understand? The damned Beasts programmed that...THING to find us! They sent it to kill us! Grr! That's the problem with you dimbulbs! You don't know an enemy when you see it!"

Sage words, Pantha, sage words...."Grr" indeed...."Grr" indeed....

(Special thanks to Titans Tower for Pantha pics and to William Martin Joel, for providing the deeply powerful music to match the feelings in my soul)

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Blogger Michael Bailey said...

Without Pantha comics just aren't comics anymore.

It's things like this that make even a long time fan like me give up and finally get that girlfriend I've always been talking about.

2/24/2006 05:16:00 AM  
Anonymous Mela said...

Brilliant! Every time I hear/read someone say how much they'll miss Pantha, I'll think of this and smile.

2/24/2006 06:03:00 AM  
Blogger Chad said...

Through the power of retcon I believe that one day I shall see my dream title: Baby Wildebesst and Pantha, written by Gilbert Hernandez and illustrated by Skottie Young

2/24/2006 07:32:00 AM  
Blogger Greg said...

I think that song may have been in the running to be our prom theme ...

Oh, the memories - they're overwhelming!

2/24/2006 09:28:00 AM  
Blogger Chris said...


Pantha --- How dare they kill off one of our most beloved heroes who MOST CERTAINLY WAS NOT a rip-off of Marvel's Tigra, if that's what you're thinking? Yet another Giffen/Dematteis work shafted by DC! I swear, there's a vendetta here!

What's that? Marv Wolfman? Oh.

Never mind.

2/24/2006 09:55:00 AM  
Blogger Steve Pheley said...

I think it's all part of a grander plot. Pantha's head, Risk's arm...there will probably be a complete set of body parts by the time the Crisis is over.

I'm just not sure whether they're going to form a team of disembodied extremities, or combine to create one composite superhero with identity problems.

2/24/2006 12:25:00 PM  
Anonymous A man named K said...

Shouldn't Baby Wildebeest be saying "Me want ball"? Isn't that how all babies speak?

2/24/2006 02:02:00 PM  
Blogger Daniel said...

You mean... we're seeing the origin of the all-new, post-post-crisis-crisis Earth-N Composite Superman?

2/24/2006 02:03:00 PM  
Blogger Brian Cronin said...

I tease, but I have to admit (as Chad well knows) that in a very grim time in Titans history (post Titans Hunt, when the book was on its way to just being AWFUL), one of the few interesting things in the book actually WAS the Baby Wildebeest humor.

2/24/2006 02:22:00 PM  
Blogger Tom Foss said...

Pantha was my favorite Thundercat, and it was great to see her get a new lease on life after the cartoon's cancellation with the move to DC's Titans. Clearly, DC blamed her for the low sales on Wildstorm's Thundercats series--without Pantha, who would buy them?--and killed her out of revenge.

These internal conflicts and financial plays are tearing comics (and characters) apart.

I have heard rumors, though, that Pantha's head will be getting its own series in OYL. DiDio said that "Quarterstaff of Pantha's Head," under Devin Grayson and J. Scott Campbell, would re-establish Pantha's head as the pre-eminent hero in the DCU. DiDio said "We're shaking things up with a new spin on Pantha's Head's abilities, and another hero will be joining the supporting cast, though it's not who you'd expect!"

Hopefully if this series does well, it'll pave the way for a Risk's Arm or Bushido's Torso series.

2/24/2006 02:44:00 PM  
Anonymous adrian said...

Blasphemy! Every real DC Comics fan knows that babies don't say "Me want ball!" They say "Sblgb glrx!"

[Seriously, if Marv Wolfman had had the sense to make Baby Wildebeest talk like Sugar and Spike, he would have been the greatest character ever.

2/24/2006 04:07:00 PM  
Anonymous thekamisama said...

Oh damn I thought you guys were talking about my favorite Pantha, The one from those inkwashed back pages of the old Vampirella magazines that Warren published...


I didn't follow Titans very much in those days so this is above my head for the most part. But my son watches the "Teen Titans" cartoon and they have a Mexican wrestling version that looks a great deal cooler, in a Los Bros Hernandez sort of way...

2/24/2006 07:32:00 PM  
Blogger Chris Sims said...

My single greatest moment in the VS SYSTEM game came from Pantha, when I was able to pump her up to 15/1 and thoroughly decapitate the Juggernaut.

It was then that I decided to retire.

2/24/2006 08:58:00 PM  
Anonymous Kelson said...

I'm going to have to look for it again, but I stumbled across an add for a Vixen series (which, IIRC, never actually came out) back in the 1970s where her costume looks almost identical to what ended up being used for Pantha.

Wikipedia has a scan of the ad.

2/24/2006 10:52:00 PM  
Anonymous Kelson said...

Er, an "ad" for the series.

Must remember to make use of Preview....

2/24/2006 10:53:00 PM  
Anonymous Scott said...

She may have a VS. card, but does she have a HeroClix??

2/25/2006 09:56:00 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

extraño a baby wildebeest, no merecia morir en Crisis... he was the best character post titans hunt!!

7/17/2006 01:41:00 AM  
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