December 1, 2022

Gabbing Geek

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Slightly Misplaced Comic Book Characters Case File #398: Titania

Yes, the She-Hulk's archenemy got to the MCU. But that version is more or less her own thing.

Yes, I am well aware that Titania is the main villain of the new Disney+ series She-Hulk: Attorney at Law.  Yes, I am sure that hardly makes the character forgotten or misplaced.

But I decided to do more or less the same thing when Morbius the Living Vampire when his movie came out…the movie nobody saw.  Basically, look at this installment as my attempt to give the source material’s backstory since I am guessing they won’t be using it.  I am typing this up only after five episodes have aired so far, and she’s appeared in all of two of them.

Titania first appeared in, of all things, Secret Wars, the first Marvel crossover event, and this one done, as far as I know, to sell toys.  The Beyonder was building his Battleworld where Marvel’s heroes and villains were divided up by motive.  Characters with selfish motives were put onto one ship while characters with selfless motives were put on another.  Basically, that meant the supervillains were on one ship and the heroes (with Magneto) were on another.  At one point, a piece of Denver, Colorado was dropped onto Battleworld, and Dr. Doom, needing fighters, took two young women and did his thing to give them superpowers.

The two girls were Mary “Skeeter” MacPherran and her only friend Marsha Rosenberg.  The two worked as clerks in a store, and Mary had earned her nickname from various bullies who mocked her for her small size and build.  Mary had, for a period, spread a rumor that she was secretly Spider-Woman since they had the same hair, but that didn’t work out when the two women encountered the real thing, and Doom had his means.

Marsha became the more reluctant supervillain Volcana.  Mary gained some height and muscle and became Titania.

Oddly enough, both women would find love on Battleworld, Volcana with the Molecule Man while Mary hooked up with her eventual husband Absorbing Man.

Now, the thing is, Titania wasn’t intended as any specific hero’s enemy.  On Battleworld, she and her new beau Crusher Creel took on any comers.  Afterwards, the best thing to be said about her is she was usually nearby when Absorbing Man took on anyone.  Indeed, much of her time is usually depicted with Crusher nearby, including a period when she got cancer and the Absorbing Man committed crimes to pay for her treatment.  If anything, she became the archenemy of the She-Hulk, a character often played a lot less seriously when in her own book and as such also in her own show.

They’re relationship can be a little..complicated.

That said, she’s had a bit of a turnaround of late.  Following her cancer diagnosis and eventual recovery, Titania has actually become more of an antihero.  The Hood, a supervillain mob boss that appears to be coming to the MCU as the villain in the Ironheart series, was putting together his own Illuminati.  Since one of the original purposes to the Illuminati was to guard the Infinity Gems, and those things are apparently much easier to get in some comics stories, he was gathering those things up for a move villainous version, giving Titania the Power Stone.  However, Titania was the one who realized the Hood was being corrupted by dark magic and ultimately tore his magic cape up in a bid perhaps to save him when she saw how evil he’d become.

Mental note:  do an entry for the Hood.

From there, Titania has actually sometimes worked with the good guys.  She joined, along with the likewise somewhat reformed Absorbing Man, Gamma Flight to do something about the Immortal Hulk, and after a first encounter with the Jane Foster version of Thor, knocked out Crusher herself when he got a little too sexist in his language before letting Jane do the same to herself to keep her street rep.  If anything, these days it seems Titania, with or without Crusher, spends a lot of time teaming up with more obscure characters to do at least some level of good.

What she’s never been is a social media influencer, as she is on the Disney+ series.

Then again, I suspect this Titania is greatly influenced by the fact she’s played by the generally glamorous and witty Jameela Jamil.  It’s almost like this Titania is just an evil version of her.

Actually, that seems kinda cool.

Anyway, will we find out this version of Titania used to be called “Skeeter” during a rough childhood?  Well, maybe.  I can see that.  But I don’t think we’ll be seeing much of Battleworld, regardless.

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