The Death-Defying Human FlyCast #1 — The Wildest Superhero Ever!

Welcome our guest Patrick Joseph as he joins host Max Romero for the inaugural episode of The Death-Defying Human FlyCast! In the first of this limited-episode series, we discuss secret identities! The Beach Boys! Cyndi Lauper and Gloria Gaynor! Not to mention 26 buses and a menstruating gorilla! And that's before we even start talking about the The Human Fly #1!

Grab your rocket cycle and don't forget your magna-gloves — things are going to get wild!

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Opening theme: “Human Fly” by The Cramps
Closing music: “Never Can Say Goodbye” by Gloria Gaynor

15 responses to “The Death-Defying Human FlyCast #1 — The Wildest Superhero Ever!

  1. Thanks for tackling this most mysterious of comic book characters. I’ve been intrigued by this character since finding the first issue in a comic book 3 pack at a Toys R Us.
    There just isn’t a whole lot out there about him. A few articles and a sketchy Wiki article is all I’ve ever been able to find.

  2. I’m not done the episode yet, but I don’t want to forget this—Human Fly definitely needs to be added to the MCU, and he needs to be played by Johnny Knoxville.

  3. Great first episode, Max! I really liked Patrick’s observation about Marvel’s licensing binge in the 1970s, and what that might say about the market at the time. This needs to be its own show!

    It seems amazing to me that the Human Fly has so completely disappeared. I mean, we found Amelia Earheart for pete’s sake, but NO ONE can find Mr. Rojak? Again, kudos to Patrick for linking him up with the equally mysterious DB Cooper. This is like a Venn Diagram of my interests, in the form of a perfect circle.

    This is gonna be a fun series, looking forward to more.

    1. ‘… we found Amelia Earheart’. We did?

      I’d not heard of DB Cooper until recently, but he turned up on Loki this week too. He seems to be one of those names who are very famous in the US, but not so much elsewhere.

  4. Great show everyone! I really enjoyed the deep dive into the Human Fly in specific, and stunts, marketing, and the craziness of comics in the ’70’s in general! Patrick was a great guest and had some excellent insights and, Max, you were fantastic as usual! What a wacky and crazy idea that just seems to work. This is a series that I’ve only ever known about but never read but listening to your recap, I would love to seek this series out. It looks like a ton of fun! This whole concept looks like it would be ripe for toys and other merchandise. Do you know if there was anything made at the time?

    Keep up the great work!

    1. I’ve never seen any merch (toys or T-shirts or anything), but it seems like it would have been a natural. I’ve seen some recently made custom figures, but nothing from that era.

  5. Fantastic first episode! Patrick was a great guest, and I greatly enjoyed your discussion about the “real” Human Fly, and the first issue itself. Amazingly, Marvel didn’t seem to learn their lesson, since they actually published that Night Cat one-shot in 1991.

    I have never read the series, but I will be searching the back issue bins to read along! Off to a great start, and you only have to clear 19 issues!


  6. Great premier episode! I remember the stuntman craze of the 70s. The Fall Guy and Super Dave Osborne are two examples, which spring immediately to my mind, of the place stuntmen help in pop culture at that time. I am not familiar with the Human Fly, so I’m looking forward to learning more about the man, the myth, and the comic book character.

  7. as a born a disablity wheelchair user who read the blurb in Bullpen bulletens at age five i willed myself to walk quite a bit. sPOILER IT did’nt work.
    22 years later when I read issuse 2 with ghost RIDER i was not really comfortable with a “real person meeting ghost rider

  8. I’ve never read a Human Fly comic, I was buying Marvel at the time but a non-powered stuntman who looked that goofy never appealed to me. But, I was on the rowing machine in the gym this week and one podcast ended, this came on and I couldn’t change the show.

    And you know what. I enjoyed the show immensely. Well done, boys. I don’t know if I’ll seek out the comic, but I’ll keep listening.

    Why was he called the Human Fly, anyway? Stickability?

    1. Daredevils – the kind that would walk tight-ropes and scale buildings – were often referred to as a “human fly.” I’m pretty sure this Human Fly is a reference to that history.

  9. Glorious first episode! This brought me so much joy, and clearly brought you both joy as well!! I’d never read this series (or knew much about it) until we did a Bill Mantlo retrospective episode with Max. I read a couple issues of Human Fly to keep up with Max, and ADORED IT!!

    A few rapid fire thoughts after listening…

    1) Part of the drive for Marvel to license so many characters in the 1970s was a direct result of the popularity of the STAR WARS comics. It’s been said often that the STAR WARS comics saved Marvel from bankruptcy at the time. For sure, that’s a big incentive to find the next big licensed property!

    2) In response to your question about a modern Human Fly, while I would enjoy that thoroughly, I think there was some magic in the air around stuntmen in the 1970s and early 1980s. With the advent of CGI, that same celebration of stuntmen sadly isn’t present nowadays. 🙁

    3) You asked for other heroes with a physical disability… Daredevil immediately springs to mind. He’s blind, though his powers drop him firmly in the superhuman category.

    4) Only tangentially related, but the Human Fly makes me think of the British 1970s Green Cross Man, portrayed by David Prowse (later Darth Vader). There is some similarities in the era, costumed real person, and marketing campaigns. And hey, the Star Wars/Human Fly Marvel connection!

    5) And it bears repeated… Ultra… the Multi-Alien.

    Again, WONDERFUL first episode! I learned so much and was fascinated by all the speculation and marketing discussions!! And of course celebrating Bill Mantlo’s ability to spin gold from straw is always appreciated.

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