When I was younger, I used to draw and write comics about a character named Mattman -- a blatant rip off of the DC character Batman. At first the copying was both obvious and pathetic. Mattman's real name was Bruce Basilo (ironically, the "Matt" part of my name was eliminated in my comic alter-ego), his butler was named Nalfred, his sidekick was Blue Jay (whose real name was David Grayson), the head villain was named The Yoker (who was a criminal clown). Other villains included Bird Man (does Penguin sound familiar?), The Giggler (Riddler?), Fantastic Woman (Catwoman I guess....) Other characters were Commissioner Morton (like Commissioner Gordan) and, later, Mattgirl (you need me to tell you who that is copying?), John MacArthur (*GASP* could this be an original character???), Phantom, and Dog Face. While making a "History" chronicle, I invented "older" characters such as Mr. Cold Hearted (Mr. Freeze), Mr. Money Bags (original, I think....), and a few others.
As time went on, I drifted a bit from blatantly copying Batman and started creating my own stories, which were -- admittedly -- high on the cheese level. However, they were fun to do, and not half bad considering my age and level of innocence. I killed off a couple of characters I didn't find necessary -- Bird Man (in what I felt was a dramatic death, where -- moments before he dies -- he and sworn enemy Mattman make peace with each other), Commissioner Morton (murdered by the Yoker, which in turn paved the way for his daughter -- Matilda Morton -- to become Mattgirl), and Nalfred (I think he died....) There was also supposed to be a story where Dog Face got rabies and had to be shot. I'm serious.... I also created some interesting alliances between the villains (at first the four main villains -- Yoker, Bird Man, Giggler, and Fantastic Woman -- always worked together, later I separated them into individual stories), most notably the one between Yoker and the Giggler, who were later collectively known as the Demented Duo.
My freshman year of college, I was in my room bored, so I decided that I was going to go back into the vault and resurrect the Mattman characters, albeit a much darker version of them. No longer was I a young boy who would put astericks where curse words should be, I was now a man who was going to deal with issues of murder and rape while writing the characters' histories. I wrote some pretty cool stuff, however then I spilled Sprite onto my laptop and all the information was destroyed.
The mission was not completely aborted, though. I drew modern-day versions of the lead characters of Mattman -- Mattman, Falcon (the original Blue Jay whho had become a hero himself), Mattgirl, Blue Jay, The Yoker, Giggler, Titanium, Fantastic Woman, Mr. Moneybags, Phantom, and Agent John MacArthur (who, through time, had gone from police officer to special detective to CIA Agent). Gone were the bright colors and lame uniforms. The Yoker, who used to wear lavender, now wore gray, black, and dark purple. The Giggler, who always wore lavender and green, was now wearing gray and black. Fantastic Woman, who historically wore green and maroon (but later moved to black and maroon), now sported sexy shorter hair along with a revealing black and silver leather outfit. Titanium once wore silly looking tights -- he now wears a ripped up workshirt and paants. Mattgirl's bright pink and purple outfit (which, in later years, was replaced by black and yellow) was eliminated. Now she wears a purple, black, and silver outfit with high-heeled boots. Every character had a major overhaul.
I decided that I would make one last Mattman tale that would end the entire series. The title of it would simply be "Hero of Justice" -- the nickname I had given the Mattman character. It would take place several years after Mattman's forced retirement after the villains eventually and gradually gave up their mission to defeat him when they realized it was impossible. Everybody had gone their separate ways -- heroes and villains alike, until two characters are reunited, with catastrophic results. I knew this would not be a comic book, but instead a book of sorts. After I started with this whole "Easter Egg" website thing, I decided a fun alternative would be to make a Mattman site, and write a mini-series chronicalling Mattman's final hurrah.
I have also posted some pictures that I have scanned. The characters here are the modern day versions, and not the historic ones. I will eventually scan and post the older pictures, so you can see the evolution of each character. Eventually, I'd also like to make bio pages of each character.
I hope you enjoy the drawings....
- Matthew Basilo
Picture of Blue Jay to be posted
Pictures of The Yoker and Mr. Moneybags to be posted soon...
"HERO OF JUSTICE"