oHOTmu or NOT Ep.97: Scarlet Witch to Sentinels

A mutant witch. A Spider-Man villain with a tail. A killer of criminals. Hush-hush hood wearers. Mutant-hunting robots. Which are Hot? Which are Not? Find out, as the Hot Squad continues its coverage of OHOTMU's 11th issue and reveals how datable its characters are.

Featuring permanent panelists Elyse, Isabel, Nathalie, and Amelie.

Listen to Episode 97 below (the usual mature language warnings apply), or subscribe to oHOTmu OR NOT? on Apple Podcasts or Spotify!

Relevant images and further credits at: oHOTmu or NOT ep.97 Supplemental

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18 responses to “oHOTmu or NOT Ep.97: Scarlet Witch to Sentinels

    1. This is what Wikipedia has to say about this:
      The story was first published in 1973, when the sitting president was Richard Nixon, embroiled at the time in the Watergate scandal. Writer Steve Englehart specifically intended this issue as a metaphor of the Watergate case and the Nixon era.

  1. “She looks cute and stubby.”


    No. There is nothing wrong with that. 😀

    Scarlett Witch: I really liked what they did with Wanda in West Coast Avengers, with the children and exploring her probability powers. After that they tended to overpower her, make her insane, or both (as with No More Mutants).

    Scorpion: I like how he was handled in the 90’s Spider-Man cartoon (thanks for including that clip), but I have very little exposure to him in the comics.

    Scourge: … who? Oh, a Punisher analog who the heroes can actually go against because he’s not a top seller. Got it.

    Secret Empire: A secret power hungry cult associated with Hydra and Roxxon Oil? Shocking. 😉 I do wonder how many of them have been distracted by the hero pulling a Waco Kid/Sheriff Bart “Where the white women at?” stunt.

    Sentinels: My personal best experience with the Sentinels was when they showed up in The Class 1000 podcast and two of the players were mutants. (Listen to that moment here, listener discretion is advised: https://youtu.be/BFzDsO8Vb1g?si=jFoJ91-YWkhbYIUv&t=2029)

    1. Since posting this comment I have listened to the Fanholes episode where they go through the “Captain America No More” storyline, and Scourge played a part in that, so I now have SOME context for the characetr.

  2. When the mystery of Scourge was being built up by having him appear briefly in different titles to kill off assorted lesser villains, some of the writers didn’t seem to be on the same page as Mark Gruenwald, who was plotting the overall Scourge storyline. In particular, when Gruenwald had Scourge rationalize that he wasn’t playing judge and jury because he only targeted convicted criminals, that didn’t jibe with some of Scourge’s past victims.

    In Secret Wars II, Jim Shooter had Scourge shoot the new Hate-Monger, who had only just been introduced and thus hadn’t been around long enough to be convicted…in fact, it was only once Scourge shot Hate-Monger that it was revealed that Hate-Monger was actually an android creation of the Psycho-Man. In that case, it was obvious that Shooter (possibly with some input from John Byrne) was using Scourge as a deus ex machina to get rid of the minion so that the Fantastic Four could focus on the Psycho-Man.

    Then, in an Amazing Spider-Man issue written by Jo Duffy & Peter David, Scourge went after Flash Thompson, who had been framed as being the Hobgoblin. Flash had only been arrested, not convicted, but that didn’t stop Scourge from going after him. Spider-Man’s interference kept Scourge from carrying out that mission, but outside the police station, Scourge encountered the Wraith attacking the station and shot Wraith instead. Wraith had never been convicted of a crime either (his OHOTMU Book of the Dead page says “no criminal record”), but presumably Scourge figured “He’s attacking a police station, I think I can safely assume he’s a villain.”

  3. With all the McDonald’s talk in the beginning, all I could hear was “McFlurry” when “Nick Fury” was mentioned later on.

  4. A crazy group of pages.

    Scarlet Witch – she has had so many costumes I hope she is part of the future episode looking at other versions. I feel for Wanda – is she mutant or witch or both? A little of both and not enough of either? I also feel for her because she has been abused by writers. Byrne in West Coast and Bendis in ‘House of M’ come to mind. That carried forward into the movies. That Byrne run had some rough moments. I recall a page with Wonder Man that was heavily edited.

    Scorpion – I have always had a fondness for Scorpion, probably built from early comic reads and his appearances in cartoons. I have never thought about his tail as a phallic thing … alas, I always will from now on.

    Scourge – I have never heard of this guy. I can’t believe he racked up so many kills! I can’t wait to hear his list in book of the dead. He does have a ‘reverse Black Mask’ look.

    Secret Empire – they remind me of the bad guys in one of my favorite old time video games – Rolling Thunder.

    I love this show. I always laugh. Thank you for that.

  5. Regarding the comment that Scorpion’s tail should be pointy: I wonder whether Ditko designed him with the Comics Code in mind. It’s possible that the Comics Code of the early 1960s would have frowned on him having a potentially stabby weapon, even if he never used it that way. Even the Swordsman, whose whole gimmick was a sword, never actually used the edge of his blade in that era. (Of course, the Code relaxed a lot of their prohibitions in later years…)

  6. I figured Wanda would be a hit!

    Scarlet Witch: I don’t recall seeing the boot cuffs before this. Also they list her hair as auburn, ignoring those years where her hair was colored black. Maybe she just dyed into during that period? It would be fun to see the girls react to Kirby’s early headress design, and the green color scheme she originally sported!

    Scorpion: Broken record department here again. Scorpion was on the 60s Spider-Man cartoon, so I was exposed to him early. I knew HIM before I knew of the animal, so I never questioned how “off-model” he was…until the Girls got a hold of him!

    Scourge: I was reading Cap pretty regularly, so the Scourge storyline was pretty intruging. Even at age 9 and 10, I realized Marvel was clearing out a lot of the, ahem, mort villains. I do wish he wore this more often!

    Secret Empire: I want to see a guy in a Hawaiian shirt, shorts and sandals with that hood on. “Sorry guys, I was just about to put on some steaks when I got the call”.

    Sentinels: I remember everyone being so bummed that we only saw a Sentinel head in X-Men 3. At least we got full-sized versions in the Days of Future Past film.

  7. Another fun listen that had me laughing out loud and looking like a crazy person to my coworkers when I chuckled to myself at my desk and said “gherkin”.

    Scarlett Witch: I am shocked. SHOCKED! That the panel likes The Scarlett Witch.

    Also, this group has the most benign levels of corruption when it comes to super powers. Most characters turn to a life of crime but these three just want nice clothes on sale that fit right and good weather. They are all in their livingrooms making devil-horns with their hands as they try to use witchcraft and probability hexes and are like “bring me a McFlurry!”

    Scorpion: I almost feel bad for Gherkin. He took a beatdown. He went from a pickle to a shell-less turtle to a penis to interior decorator to a snake.

    The Scourge: come for the skull face, stay for the weird teeth trivia about baby x-rays and how you chew.

    Side note: I think you guys laughed at Turner D Century during the Dominic Fortune entry, which was a few months ago for me but 34 years ago for you guys.

    Sentinels: Wait….does this mean Nath is a Box Sentinel?

    Also, will the sad Canadian anthem be the theme music for the book of the dead?

    Lastly, trying to get me and Amélie’s new husband in a fight for a number sounds very Secret Empire-ish and I think we need to check everyone’s closet for sinister looking red robes.

    My favorite moment of the episode:

    “I love the occult and I love witches and I love red and pink and I love cute stubby people and I love YouTube deep dives…”

    “Are these your vows?”

  8. Another fun episode as always. I especially enjoyed the musings on the current Sentinels’ Canadian-ness. Think it was the same team that made the Canadarms?

    As Chris Pine implies, Scarlet Witch was a no-brainer.

    Somehow, unlike Chris Franklin, I was familiar with what a scorpion was from a young age (although I don’t remember encountering any until much later). So, I always thought the Mac Gargan version was a missed opportunity. I wonder if he was just a rush job that stuck.

    Congratulations to Amelie!

  9. Scarlet Witch: I mean, come on, everyone loves her! (Except writers.) Shortly after this, her costume will change slightly to have thigh-high boots, and oh my goodness!

    Scorpion: I’m glad the squad asked “why is he green?” I’m sure Siskoid had pointed out at some point the whole primary colors for heroes and secondary colors for villains. With Spidey being all red and blue, a large number of his early villains were green only or with a second color like purple. In addition to the Scorpion, we have: Lizard, Dr Octopus, Vulture, Sandman (green shirt), Electro, Mysterio, and of course, the Green Goblin. With all of these characters, Marvel missed on creating a villain team with the best name possible: Gang Green. I REGRET NOTHING!

    Scourge: His presence in the Marvel comics back then was palpable. By and large, his appearances were so sudden and shocking, you never saw him coming, just like his victims. A really cool mystery and non-event company-wide subplot.

    Secret Empire: I first learned about them in OHOTMU, and that was enough for me.

    Sentinels: Sometimes they look like pink-and-purple Iron Man knockoffs. Don’t get me wrong, I think they’re great antagonists. But either the original design was copying too much, or it’s unsatisfying to have that similarity and *not* make it a story point. Does anybody know if there’s been any stories like that? I know it didn’t come up in Stark’s Armor Wars.

    Sorry I haven’t written in a while, gang. Life has been crazypants and continues to be. Thanks for the laughs, as always!

  10. It’s always great to hear the Hot Squad back at it again! I’m still far behind but I always look forward to these episodes when I can get to them. Now on to the entries…..

    Scarlet Witch – Hot! Did I read any of her stories? Nope. Did I seek her out on the comic stands? Nope. But every time I saw her, I thought she looked amazing.

    Scorpion, The – Talk about a bulge!

    Scourge – I rarely read Captain America comics, but when I did, it seem to have Scourge (around those early 300’s) so I tend to think he’s a bigger deal than he is. And not to get ahead, but the entry of Death Adder in Handbook of the Dead shows Scourge taking him out and I found that very shocking as a kid.

    Secret Empire – Slacks and wingtips under a robe? Hard pass.

    Sentinels – I was never a big X-Men reader but they look amazing in the Marvel United board game! They’re huge!

    I may be number 4, but I think I will work my way up the ladder soon! Then I’ll burn out from the middle management of being number 3 and request a demotion to number 10.

    Another great show everyone! Thanks for all the laughs! Keep up the great work!

    This episode was brought to by the Government of Canada.

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