Dave Galanter
December 1st 1969 - December 12th 2020
He was loved.

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Member Since: Sat May 17, 2008
Posts: 4,999
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Grey Gargoyle

Member Since: Sat May 17, 2008
Subj: What's in a name?
Posted: Sat May 01, 2021 at 04:48:20 pm EDT (Viewed 92 times)
Reply Subj: Question for the experts: Carol Susan Jane Danvers, when did we learn for the very first time what her middle names are?
Posted: Fri Apr 30, 2021 at 11:53:24 am EDT (Viewed 86 times)

    When did we learn for the very first time what her middle names are?

    I traced it back to Avengers Annual #10 (1981).

    I can't help thinking that Susan Storm Richards, Janet van Dyne and Jean Grey are the female founding members of their respective teams and that it cannot be a coincidence.

    Was it an Easter egg from Chris Claremont?

Never underestimate the power of coincidence - after all, that very issue also saw the appearance of a kid called Maddy Pryor, which later set off lots of fan theories that this might have been meant to be Scott Summers' future wife in the shape of a child, but in the end it turned out to have been a coincidental namesake (well, not so coincidental; Chris Claremont named both after English folk singer Maddy Prior).

Had Stan Lee chosen Carol Danvers' middle names, I'd almost certainly would have put it down to coincidence. He did not use an awful lot of given names(1), especially when it came to females, and especially English-speaking ones. I always like to point out the Peter Parker's female friends and relations: His mother was Mary Parker, his aunt and surrogate mother is May (which can be a form of Mary). His eventual wife was Mary Jane Watson(2), and HER aunt is Anna May Watson (to further compound the heavy Mary presence, Anna is a form of Ann, the name of the Virgin Mary's mother, according to tradition).(3) And during the Lee/Ditko run, the two girls vying for Peter Parker's attention were Liz Allan and Betty Brant - two familiar forms of the same name, Elizabeth.(4)

Which reminds me: I very much enjoyed Emile Bravo's series "Une épatante aventure de Jules", where Jules' British girlfriend Janet has two sisters called Janis and Jane.

(1) Not that he wouldn't also overuse some surnames. In the 1960s he had three notable Markos, who apparently were not related to each other: Flint Marko aka the Sandman, Cain Marko aka the Juggernaut, and Michael "Man Mountain" Marko (a minor Spider-Man villain). Flint Marko was later retconned (not by Stan Lee, though) into being a nom de crime.

(2) Whom Ms. Marvel's original writer Gerry Conway used as Carol Danvers' friend in the two issues he wrote before being pulled off that series.

(3) Tom DeFalco would later reveal that Mary Jane's mother was called Madeline - a name derived from Mary Magdalene. Brian Michael Bendis started a romantic subplot between Spider-Man and Shadowcat (Katherine Anne Pryde) in Ultimate Spider-Man, and Chris Claremont apparently wanted to start something between Spider-Man and Rogue (named Anna Marie by himself).

(3) At the same time, Bruce Banner's main squeeze was Betty Ross, who not only shares a name with Betty Brant (and Betty Cooper of Archie Comics fame), but also has a name that's almost identical to Betsy Ross, one of Captain America's Golden Age supporting characters and eventually the Golden Girl. (Later writers would establish that the two were in fact related).

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