Saturday, November 25, 2006

I Can Give You REAL&trade Superpowers - The Richard Dragon&trade Way!

Hi, I'm Richard Dragon™.

We don't have television here on Nanda Parbat - we have Richard Dragonvision™. Ordinary television relies on a foolish box powered by the idiotic technology of the western world, some silly wires and perhaps a ridiculous satellite or two. But Richard Dragonvision™ uses the purer energies of a team of telepathic monks who pick up the signals with the power of their minds - minds enhanced by the Richard Dragon System™ - and then act them out on a little stage.

Now you may be thinking "No, Richard Dragon™. I like paying $800 for a brand new plasma screen monstrosity every six months. I like giving my hard-earned money to the corporate whores who are busily destroying our ecosystem with their ravenous monetary claws. I like being a moronic fool, a pathetic puppet, a crass, retarded shill for people who would kill my entire family rather than go a single day without bathing their genitals in purest Moet & Chandon." You may be thinking that. But you're wrong.

Imagine watching your favourite shows in Richard Dragonvision™. Imagine watching Aaron Sorkin's semi-watchable drama Studio 60, for example. Wouldn't the tortured, mangled, American-written 'English english' of that one who was in the UK version of The Office sound so much better coming out of the mouth of a telepathic monk named Steve? What if you never had to look at Matthew Perry's face again? I can teach you the secret of never having to look at Matthew Perry's face again. I can teach you to watch HBO with your mind.

It's not TV. It's RDV©™. And it can be yours. For a small consideration.

But I digress. I was watching my Richard Dragonvision™, and Steve - in the role of Lex Luthor - informed me that he, Lex Luthor, not Steve, could bestow on me tremendous super powers. I could, according to Steve's brilliant impersonation of the Lexcorp CEO, divert the course of mighty rivers with my bare hands. I could fly like an eagle or burrow like a mole. I could sprint faster that light itself without even breaking a sweat.

Do you know what I did when Steve informed me of this tremendous offer?

Customer, I laughed.

Luthor is a fool. I'm given to understand his 'super powers' flake and itch. They're unsightly and prone to shorting out at unfortunate moments. They smell. I've had a communication from one 'E.S.Pete' who claims that in order to gain control of the mind of a criminal he must give up control of his bowels. His superheroic efforts have met with scorn, hatred and a cease and desist letter. He asked me what I, Richard Dragon™, could do to help. What could I, Richard Dragon™, do to aid this poor unfortunate man who only wished to rid his streets of crime?

Customer, I laughed.

E.S.Pete is a fool, and like all fools who refuse to follow the Richard Dragon System™, he is destined to live out his pathetic days either toiling in obscurity or wallowing in his own filth. Superpowers cannot be given, my friends. They can only be earned. As the Richard Dragon System™ explains, when you no longer want amazing superpowers, only then will they come to you. And you have to really not want them! Not just say you don't. You have to scream "Get thee behind me, fantastic super energies!" no less than eight times an hour. And mean it.

Take Ralph. As I type this on the keys of my inner mind, he is stark naked, pushing a massive boulder covered with razorblades up a steep, icy cliff-face. If he fails to meet the challenge, he will be beaten with iron poles. If he succeeds, he will be rewarded by being ritually cleansed, in the form of a beating, with iron poles. Every fifteen minutes, I walk out on my verandah and scream at him through a megaphone: "Ralph! Would you like some really brilliant superpowers to help you with that?"

Like a fool, he starts to cry! Weeping tears of want. He does not understand the Richard Dragon System™, but you can, for a small consideration. You could do it in your own comfortable home. Instead of an icy cliff-face, you could use a sofa cushion propped against the wall. Instead of a razor-coated boulder, you could use a bread roll. Instead of being beaten with iron poles, you could have a sandwhich. The principle is the same. The important thing is that you have a tape of my Richard Dragon Voice™, available for $19.99, asking whether or not you want superpowers.

Don't listen to Luthor. His superpowers are rubbish, and I'm confident that they will be the undoing of those who possess them. Whereas the superpowers I can give you are really great, and will be good and not rubbish like Luthor's are. That's a promise. A Richard Dragon Promise™©.

This has been a public service announcement.

Sunday, November 19, 2006

Have YOU ever thought about unleashing YOUR inner zen™?

Hi, I'm Richard Dragon™. Ralph has kindly allowed me to post on his online journal, as the only way to gain access to the internet in the far-off land of Nanda Parabat™ is through me.

It saddens me to say it, but Ralph's zen™ is weak. His years of hatred, avarice and envy have made him unworthy, which is why I took his clothes away and chained him to a metal post in the snow. It's all part of what I call the Richard Dragon System™. Ralph, you see, must learn to embrace and cherish such things as freezing cold and hyperthermia. Only when he asks them to stay will they finally leave. I'm confident that as soon as he embraces the pneumonia raging through his system, his skin will lose that unfortunate blue shade and he'll never get a cold again.

All thanks to the Richard Dragon System™. A System™ that could be yours to own.

You see, the Richard Dragon System™ isn't just about making confused, troubled young men into the best martial artists they can be. It's also about making YOU™ into the best YOU™ you can be. I can teach YOU™ secret zen™ skills such as pretending to be confined to a wheelchair. I can teach YOU™ to allow a scorpion to crawl over your face. And most of all, I can teach YOU™ the secret of getting RICH!

Look at your boss's fancy convertable. Wouldn't YOU™ like one of those? I can show you how to get one - the right way. The ZEN™ way.

Much as pain will only leave when you ask it to stay, money will only stay when you ask it to leave. The sooner you ask your money to leave, by sending it to me, Richard Dragon™, and buying my pamphlet 'The Richard Dragon System™ - Zen™, Scorpions™ and YOU™' - the sooner you'll be RICH beyond your wildest dreams.

Don't believe me? Just ask Ralph! He's not quite worthy to speak to you in person yet, but I'll be happy to relay his answers to you! He'll be happy to tell you how it feels to grow RICHER™, HAPPIER™ and MORE SUCCESSFUL™ every day - the Richard Dragon™ way.

This has been a public service announcement.

Friday, November 10, 2006

You Are My Bitch Now, Dr Fate

So I ended up taking a dump in Dr Fate.

Basically, he'd told me we were setting out for the giant magical hand of Neron at precisely ten o'clock sharp, Monday morning, in order to make a Faustian bargain. So I figured I could set the alarm for eight, take a shower, have a nice leisurely breakfast and get my things together in time for him to knock on the door at about a quarter to or so, right?


At five o'clock in the goddamned morning he starts butting my door with his golden face - carving huge chunks out of the wood with that damn fin of his that I'm going to have to pay to get repaired - and he doesn't stop with his hammering until I'm standing there in my dressing gown blinking at him. And then - then - after he's woken me and all my neighbours out of a sound sleep, after he's destroyed my front door, after he's sold me for a pack of cigarettes to a bunch of interdimensional Native American mafiosi, he stares at me with those creepy glowing eyes of his, and frigging intones:

"You betray your heroic legacy, Ralph Dib-"

He didn't get any further. I mean, I don't even have a legacy! There wasn't some guy in WWII who explored the stretch-making properties of tropical-fruit-flavoured soda. That was me. I was the first. I'm like the Isaac Newton of stretching. It's a whole new art form, and I'm totally the Picasso of it. Which would make Plastic Man the Duchamp, I guess, but he just fell in some goop like an asshole. He didn't examine a fruit drink. The guy who examined a fruit drink and its relationship to circus freaks was myself. That's what makes me, Ralph Dibny, the No Longer Elongated Man, the greatest superhero of all time. So if anybody wants to take their legacy from me and become Elongated Man Junior or Elongochild or The Purple Stretchboy, I can think of no greater honour for them. And for just $500, cash, they can have my personal guarantee that I won't sue them within an inch of their zitty lives for trademark infringement. That's the mark of a hero. That's the mark of Ralph Dibny. And it can be yours. For five hundred clams.

But I digress.

The reason Dr Fate didn't get any further was because I, the heroic Ralph Dibny, grabbed him by the fin, turned him upside down and let go my entire straining bowel deep inside him. I'd had a heaping helping of Queen Chili the night before as part of Ollie's pre-victory celebrations (which I was invited to, no matter what Ollie, the guest list or any of the bouncers had to say on the matter) and frankly, it needed to come out. And come out it did. I'm not going to belabour the point here, but I shat in Dr Fate. Repeatedly. It felt good.

Things changed a little after that, I can tell you. Suddenly he's not floating around the place like some big-ass Lord Of Order! Suddenly he's crying in the corner like the Lord Of Being Filled With My Fecal Matter! Frankly, it did more for my therapy than five years of going to Dr Willis, although I doubt he'd agree even if he wasn't still mooning over Emily Dickinson's restless skeleton. But screw him! The new kick-ass, take-charge, heavy-hitting, golden-hat-defecating-in Ralph Dibny takes no prisoners and obeys no rules, least of all those about not filling up Dr Fate's golden helmet with human ordure.

Suffice it to say that I was in charge now. And I was taking us to see a giant magical hand a little more to my liking. A giant hand associated with heroism. And admittedly unspeakable torture and death. But heroism nonetheless.

Unfortunately that didn't turn out quite as well as I thought it would.

Don't get me wrong! The Spectre had a great plan! I was going to take some of his power and take care of the bitch Loring once and for all! With a Dibny-style Spectre Poetic Vengeance, involving her watching herself stomping about on my wife's brain forever and - and this is the clever part - not enjoying it at all! Genius!

It was pretty emotionally intense, mind you, and that was probably why it didn't work out too well. I mean, I was crying, Loring was crying, Sue would probably have been crying if she'd known she was going to have her brain stepped on, and a vase got knocked over. But things were going completely to plan. Anyway, then Loring says something about how I'm only punishing myself, and I'm just thinking about how that's total crap since actually I'm punishing her, and that's completely the whole point of this, Loring -

- when she suddenly elbows me in the balls!

I mean, so much for the big vengeance plan. We both snap back to the present, except she elbowed me so hard it's a few days later, and I'm left doubled over in the fetal position. And then the Spectre takes all his power back because I got elbowed in the balls like a complete gimp. And I'm all like "you tricked me!" Because he did! I was meant to have the invulnerable scrotum of the Spectre for that vengeance. But I guess he was worried a stray meteorite might hit him in the nads or something so he kept that for himself. And he's all like, "blah blah blah bargain blah blah you're a wuss blah blah."

Anyway, I'm wise to his game now. By letting me take that hit to the balls, he told be something crucial - that I, Ralph Dibny, need to learn how to get punched in the balls without feeling it. Luckily I know a secret martial arts monastery where a guy can learn the secrets of taking blows to the groin and then getting right back up and kicking some Jean Loring flavoured ass. Once I've mastered those mad skills, we're heading right back to the vengeance, baby. It's not over, Loring. There's some brain-stomp-watching to be done in your future, and it's on an infinite loop. And you don't even get popcorn, unless it's special guilt-flavoured popcorn of vengeance.

Anyway, here I am in the mountains where there isn't any internet and people communicate by telepathy. So I had to plug my modem into a monk. He kind of wants a break now, so I'll sign off until next week. This is Ralph Dibny saying - vengeance is mine!

Friday, November 03, 2006

What The Christ Is John Irons Doing On My Television Instead Of Me?

I do not believe this. It's like he's marched into my living room and cut a hole in my TV and climbed inside it, only to burst out of it and punch me in the face. How dare he steal my thunder with his new shiny-shiny looks and his ideologically-opposed neice? I'll bet if I had a living relative who didn't despise me I could train them to hold whatever viewpoint is most abhorrent to me in order to scare up some sweet ratings bonanza. Not that I would! Because unlike a certain former hospital administrator I could mention, I happen to have principles! Principles that mean that I, the world-famous ex-Elongated Man, would rather go on a show that's honest, that enriches the culture - a show like Steve Lombard's Sports Bloopers Funbag Fairground for example, if only that mullety bastard would return my calls - instead of Jack Ryder's horrific excuse for a circus.

Ryder is apparently trying to become a left-wing Bill O'Reilly, but his idea of being left-wing is to shout at superheroes especially loud. Christ knows what that show's going to end up as - presumably some awful parody of Vic Sage's old show, with a few minutes devoted to aping Keith Olbermann thrown in in some desperate attempt to keep things current. Christ knows what he's going to do apart from that. It's not like he can get any mileage out of attacking President Home - let's face it, politically the President's a total cypher, but the way Ryder rattles on you'd think he'd just suspended habeus corpus or something. Anyway, I know I wouldn't soil my dignity by appearing as a celebrity guest and/or talking head on a show like that, no matter how much of a prime-time slot it gets or how many thousand it pays per appearance.

That god-damned steel-faced rat bastard, I knew he was trouble from the moment he showed up in the JLA instead of me! You think I couldn't rip off Superman for some easy fame? You think I didn't consider basing my whole shtick on being like an armored folk hero? I could have been The Elongated Paul Bunyan Of Steel, but my wife said it sounded like too much of a mouthful.

Well, fine, war has been declared, John Henry Ass. You think you can go stealing Ralph Dibny's face-time? I'll just put a call in to Jack Ryder myself and see what he has to say to a little elongated commentary from the nation's most famous ex-superhero, celebrity and talking head. Somehow I doubt we'll be seeing you or your cunningly-orchestrated family disputes on that show again, Irons, because Jack 'Bandwagon' Ryder is going to have his hands full squeezing opinions from the ripe political-commentary fruit that is Dibny. Now that Dr Fate's out of my hair for good, I can devote the whole of next week to rebuilding my career as the wild child of media product endorsement, starting with another call to that hairy frat gimp Lombard. In fact, the phone is ringing as I type this - doubtless the funbag-obsessed one himself come to beg my forgiveness and install me a permanent place in the 'Perky Puppies Political Parade' slot.

It wasn't Lombard. It was Dr Fate. The Magic Mafia wants me to keep the whole of next week free. For favours.

God Christing Bastard.