#7 Mad Rat Mad

| November 7, 2012 | 0 Comments

Names: Mad Rat Mad

Place of origin: Boston, Massachusetts, USA

Occupation: Violent criminal

Legal status: Wanted criminal in the USA

Identity: Publicly known

Marital status: Divorced (I’m sure there’s a story behind that)

Known relatives: Mad scientist “father” Dr. Whistler

Group affiliation: Currently none. Has repeatedly worked as a lieutenant for other supercriminals

Base of operations: Various. Usually within the USA

History: Mad Rat Mad was built in the late nineteenth century by a mad scientist named Doctor Whistler, who was inspired by the work of Doctor Frankenstein. Dr. Whistler wanted to avoid the problems Frankenstein had by creating something that could not be mistaken for human. Using some human parts was necessary if the new monster was to become a useful servant, but his brain would be something else entirely. Dr. Whistler decided the brain mass was a key component but that creatures with brains similar in size to humans would already have their behaviors locked in. Instead, using Frankenstein’s methods, Dr. Whistler built his monster a brain stitched together from hundreds of rat brains. He encased them in a steel skull, covered that with rat fur, and attached it to his monster’s body.

The results were erratic. The creature lived, but swung between catatonia and distinctly rat-like behavior. Frustrated by his inability to teach it to do anything useful, Dr. Whistler decided he might have more luck issue his commands directly with his mind. He set up a machine that could read the magnetic field generated by his brain and duplicate it in his rat monster. With it, he could manipulate the rat monster as if it were a puppet. What he did not realize is that he was also sending a crappy copy of his brain over as well. Gradually, parts of Dr. Whistler wrote themselves over the rat monster’s mind until it consolidated itself into a stew of rat instincts and Dr. Whistler.

The resultant stew of megalomania, aggressiveness, intelligence, and impulsiveness created a monster that was not pleased to be made into a puppet. The rat monster escaped his creator’s lab and made its way into the wild. Dr. Whistler was not pleased with his the loss of his experiment, but there was not much he could do without admitting to having created him. Dr. Whistler died several years later, consumed by a carnivorous yak of his own creation.

The rat monster eventually left the wilderness to skulk out the edge of civilization, living among the refuse. While there, he caught the eye of a side-show owner, who took him in and gave him the name Mad Rat Mad. He lived for a couple years among the side-show freaks, earning a reputation for being aggressive and high-maintenance. After a particularly nasty fight with members of the sideshow, he returned to living on the edge of civilization.

Again, he was plucked from that life, but this time by a supercriminal. The Silver Piper had decided to expand beyond his control over small rodents, so he collected rat themed henchmen to supply him with more muscle. The group eventually fell apart, but Mad Rat Mad started to get other jobs as a heavy for the criminal world for a period that lasted several decades. He was still hard to work with, however, and eventually found himself relegated to living unemployed on the edges of society.

After a couple more decades, Mad Rat Mad was rediscovered, this time by the emerging heavy metal scene. He was made the front man of a band and led a rock and roll life style until it landed him in jail. When Patience the Ogre staged a jail break to recruit some criminals for a plot, Mad Rat Mad was among the sprung.

His second career in crime was a bit flashier, as he often staged his own operations rather than just following others. He repeatedly crossed paths with the superspeeder Speedway, where his wild unpredictability kept her from easily wrapping him up.

He has a nasty grudge against the hero, Grassblade. After Grassblade tore apart one of Mad Rat Mad’s more successful rackets as king of the sewer people, the rat monster summoned every bit of genius he copied from Doctor Whistler to try and destroy Grassblade. They gone at it several times since, but while they’re managed to hurt each other badly, neither has managed to kill the other.

More recently, he has tangled several times with Mallrat. For some reason, he seems to think she is an imposter who is pretending to be him, despite the fact they look nothing alike.

Story role: Mad Rat Mad is an antagonist than can function as a primary villain or an elite henchman for a stronger villain. He is not entirely rational, so he can be as vicious or as goofy as is needed for the story. He is a killer, but he has to be angry at someone for him to try and kill them. He doesn’t just do it for fun.

Height: Medium

Body type: Wiry with a giant rat head

Known superpowers: Built from reanimated corpse parts, Mad Rat Mad does not bleed and continue to function even when grievously injured. If ones of his hands still functions, he can rebuild himself from scratch.

Limitations: His animal nature often overrides his intellect.

Category: 2012, Superhero

About the Author ()

My name is Patrick Rennie. I am 36, have a day job that has nothing to do with comics, and live in Erie after growing up elsewhere. I can be found online at www.patrickrennie.com and on twitter as @patrennie. I am primarily a writer of fantasy, superheroes, and science fiction. I enjoy both short form and long form comics and have done work with both. For example, the daily strip Phantast Staffing Services that I used to do can be found here while this link leads to a more recent script for a superhero comic called Epiphany. I also prefer reading the genres I write in, although I supplement them with comedies, autobiographies, and dramas. I mostly read comics on the web, in trade paperbacks, on my iPad, and in the newspaper. I usually skip monthly comic books, magazines, manga, editorial cartoons, and children’s books.

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