cyberghostface: (Spidey & MJ)
[personal profile] cyberghostface posting in [community profile] scans_daily

"Flowers for Rhino" was a two-issue story in 'Tangled Web', a Spider-Man anthology series. Seven pages from each.

The story opens with Stella Pavlov, the daughter of a gangster, kidnapped by his rivals. Her father sends the Rhino to rescue her. She asks who he is.

Rhino attempts to go after Spider-Man, but he is outsmarted by the webslinger and humiliated in front of the media. After Rhino escapes from prison, he meets up with the scientist who grafted on his hide.

We see the day in the life of the Rhino and it's miserable. He lives in the basement so he won't fall through the floors and he has pulleys to pull himself out of bed. Stella's fiance, Romeo, comes to him with a job offer. Rhino turns it down but takes it when he finds out it's looking after Stella.

Depressed at how meaningless his life has become, he considers suicide. Then he has an idea.

The doctor starts it up. Rhino bites down hard.

Part 2...

The doctor is attempting to test Rhino's intelligence to see how he can maneuver himself out of a maze. The doctor tells him to use his head, to which Rhino responds by barreling through the maze with his horn.

As he becomes smarter, Stella starts to warm up to the Rhino. Jealous, Romeo leaves an anonymous tip for Spider-Man about his whereabouts and leads Rhino into a trap. During his encounter with the webslinger, however, Rhino manages to outsmart and defeat him. Eventually, Stella chooses the Rhino over Romeo.

The doctor's monkey, it turns out, has committed suicide. The doctor believes that the chimp became too intelligent for his own good and lost interest in everything. Rhino is not concerned; "I can't see the problem. I mean... how can one be too intelligent?"

Once again, the Rhino considers ending his life when he thinks back on his operation.

Romeo and Stella have married, with Romeo taking over Stella's father's organization. The Rhino crashes into one of his meetings. Something catches his attention, however. A book written by "William Shake-something". It reminds him of something that he can't recall. Then he throws it aside and remembers who he is.

Date: 2012-11-11 05:35 am (UTC)
beoweasel: (Default)
From: [personal profile] beoweasel
Wait, if Rhino has become this intelligent, why not just reduce his intelligence by a fraction that he's still a genius, but not driven to complete depression by it?

Oh wait, status quo.

Date: 2012-11-12 01:30 am (UTC)
From: [personal profile] silicondream
And why not figure out how to get his skin off before re-stupiding himself?

(Don't really see why that's so impossible in the first place. 616 Earth has plenty of shit that can cut through someone as tough as the Rhino, and vat-grown skin grafts shouldn't be too hard for your average mad biologists.)

Date: 2012-11-11 05:40 am (UTC)
From: [personal profile] merrickm
It's interesting that nearly every take-off on Flowers for Algernon I've ever seen has the character's return to his original state as a clear happy ending, often done on purpose like it is here, because being a genius was awful. Whereas in Flowers for Algernon itself, it was a tragedy.

Date: 2012-11-11 07:07 am (UTC)
shadowpsykie: Information (Default)
From: [personal profile] shadowpsykie
Hmmmm I kinda get it... Being smart doesn't always make life easier .. Makes it harder most of the time... I know I jane said more than once that I miss being a kids, not because of the lack of responsibility, but because I didn't know as much as I did now. I was content, for the most part, with simple answers, believe this, believe that. This is why this, this is why that. it really sucks such sometimes... Being intelligent... You aren't happy with simple answers anymore. then you find out your answers lead to more questions.

Date: 2012-11-11 10:10 am (UTC)
lilacsigil: 12 Apostles rocks, text "Rock On" (12 Apostles)
From: [personal profile] lilacsigil
This is not a bad thing! Asking more and more questions and knowing there's no simple answer is great! Then again, I was raised to ask a lot of questions and do my own research, so I don't really remember being content with answers at all. I agree that being smart doesn't make life easier, especially as the Rhino has no context in which to develop his ideas and questions, but it's fun to want to know more and have a way to find it out!

Date: 2012-11-11 12:25 pm (UTC)
icon_uk: (Default)
From: [personal profile] icon_uk
Being able to ask question is great, not being able to STOP asking questions is not necessarily great....

" 'Why?',
Now that's a beautiful word,
The second best there is.
The very best word of all
Is "because'"

from 'Need to Know' from Menken and Brennet's "Weird Romance"

Date: 2012-11-11 01:59 pm (UTC)
insolent_one: Formal Alien (Default)
From: [personal profile] insolent_one
"Happiness in intelligent people is the rarest thing I know."
- Ernest Hemingway
A quote from the man who committed suicide with a shotgun.

Date: 2012-11-11 12:03 pm (UTC)
icon_uk: (Default)
From: [personal profile] icon_uk
This IS a tragedy I'd say, the fact that he felt he had to revert to being stupid is a tragic waste of his potential, as well as rendering himself too stupid to realise this.

Date: 2012-11-11 07:39 am (UTC)
skemono: I read dead racists (Default)
From: [personal profile] skemono
A math equation that can deduce the secret identities of super heroes??, care to show your work there, Rhino?

Date: 2012-11-11 08:16 am (UTC)
lissa_quon: (Default)
From: [personal profile] lissa_quon
Haven't you seen the show Numbers? there's a math equation for EVERYTHING

Date: 2012-11-11 09:01 am (UTC)
seisachtheia: (Default)
From: [personal profile] seisachtheia
Not just any math....ALGEBRA, the most magical math of all!

Date: 2012-11-11 09:02 am (UTC)
skemono: I read dead racists (Default)
From: [personal profile] skemono
Indeed. Peano's axioms clearly lead to Peter Parker being Spider-Man.

Date: 2012-11-11 11:06 pm (UTC)
seisachtheia: (Default)
From: [personal profile] seisachtheia
Honestly though, if he'd said "algorithm" I probably would have just shrugged and figured he'd been data diving. Hmm. A few years back, there was a group that demonstrated that you could pretty accurately guess at people's sexuality by analyzing the patterns of who they were friends with on facebook and extrapolated from that you could do the same kind of analysis to identify political parties, involvement in certain movements, etc, etc. I bet in a comic book world, you could do something similar to identify groups of superheroes.

Actually, that would be funny, especially when you throw in the concept of targeted ads.

Date: 2012-11-12 01:27 am (UTC)
From: [personal profile] silicondream
You know their names have to be alliterative, for one thing.

Date: 2012-11-11 10:11 am (UTC)
lilacsigil: 12 Apostles rocks, text "Rock On" (12 Apostles)
From: [personal profile] lilacsigil
I bet it could be done given enough information and limited variable (e.g. Spider-Man or Daredevil would be plausible, the more cosmic superheroes definitely not.)

Date: 2012-11-11 10:11 am (UTC)
righthondude: (Default)
From: [personal profile] righthondude
So intelligence = eyesight problems

Date: 2012-11-11 12:02 pm (UTC)
icon_uk: (Default)
From: [personal profile] icon_uk
or "Intelligence leads to realisation that NOT wearing glasses when you should have started wearing them years ago is pointless vanity"

Date: 2012-11-11 12:42 pm (UTC)
cainofdreaming: cain's mark (pic#364829)
From: [personal profile] cainofdreaming
Or "Glasses am make me look smart."

Date: 2012-11-12 03:36 am (UTC)
righthondude: (Default)
From: [personal profile] righthondude
Excellent reasoning

Date: 2012-11-11 01:42 pm (UTC)
From: [personal profile] arilou_skiff
And this is why Spider-man has the best rogues gallery of them all.

Date: 2012-11-11 03:19 pm (UTC)
silverzeo: (Default)
From: [personal profile] silverzeo
Ahh.... I think Joker and Two_face want to have a word with you on that one.

Date: 2012-11-11 05:16 pm (UTC)
grazzt: (Default)
From: [personal profile] grazzt
I would still go with the Spidey's Rogue Gallery. Bats best are better, but Spidey has a larger pool of good ones to draw on.

Date: 2012-11-11 05:58 pm (UTC)
mrstatham: (Default)
From: [personal profile] mrstatham
I'd say they're about tied. Spider-Man also has more classic latter-day rogues than Batman, I'd argue.

Date: 2012-11-11 02:01 pm (UTC)
arbre_rieur: (Default)
From: [personal profile] arbre_rieur
Wasn't Rhino also made super-smart during Mark Waid's Ka-Zar run?

Date: 2012-11-11 02:09 pm (UTC)
damar148: (Default)
From: [personal profile] damar148
That scientist is the greatest character I've seen in a while.

Date: 2012-11-11 10:23 pm (UTC)
citygod: (Default)
From: [personal profile] citygod
Nice Philip Glass joke, there.


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