Back in the 80s, when comedy was funny, the National Lampoon ran a recurring comic called Mr. Vengeance, written and illustrated by Buddy Hickerson, who today illustrates The Quigmans. This comic typically illustrated the title character suffering some minor misfortune in the opening panel, and devoted the rest of the comic to his hilarously violent overreactions to it, i.e.: “Sure enough, there is a blemish on his wax job. He decides to get EVEN!!” This comic was genius in that it made the same joke over and over again — varying only over the question of how mundane the slight, and how creatively violent the reaction, would be each episode. Mr. Vengeance would torture not only those “responsible” for his pain but, feeling rightous, anyone who’d done anything wrong. “Someone MUST pay,” was his credo.
I’m reminded of Mr. Vengeance today — and incredibly frustrated that I cannot locate a comic online* (”someone WILL pay!”) — as Marlon Anderson returns to the Mets tonight to debut against the club that recently released him, the Dodgers. May Marlon find rightousness in his revenge. May David Newhan take it out on AAA pitching: He’s the one DFAed to make room for Anderson. And may his remaining Met teammates take out their frustrations from the recently completed Padres series on the Dodgers.
That was NOT a nice way to lose a series and whatever momentum Tuesday’s win might have provided. And, really, shouldn’t be enough that Heath Bell has a good season in an important role with his new team? Is it necessary that he chase down anyone with a rolling tape recorder to detail all manner of abuses and excuses stemming from his time at Shea? To kick us when we’re down? Who does he think he is, Mr. Vengenance? To paraphrase another National Lampoon product of my childhood. “He can’t say that about us. Only WE can say those things about us!”
Well, as far I’m concerned the time has come to get mad. To take some revenge, even if it’s not on Heath Bell. To get EVEN!
It’s not clear what number Anderson will appear in tonight. Despite the ruminations below, one commenter thinks 23 is likely because 8 is still in mothballs, and it may very well be. Anderson wore 21 with the Dodgers earlier this year (not available here). Twenty-three happens to be available due to the relase of Julio Franco. Yesterday, he since signed with the Braves where he’s doubt planning some revenge.
*-Ironically the best I could do is find a site where a former collaborator of Hickerson’s takes his own revenge. If you can point out Mr. Vengeance online, or send a copy of a scanned comic here, I promise to leave you out of my next rampage.