TITLE: Babe Issue #1
YEAR: July 1994
Story & Art by John Byrne
Coloring by Matt Webb
Painted cover Art by Gary Cody
There is no doubt that John Byrne had a hand of making Marvel Universe’s She-Hulk to be cool, sexy, intelligent and independent on top of her superhuman strength, like her cousin Bruce Banner a.k.a. The Incredible Hulk.
But he had created the concept for “Babe” back in 1984 and pitched it to Marvel but they were not interested. Byrne rediscovered the artwork for “Babe” back in 1990 and wanting to create a character that was tall and strong and unlike She-Hulk, creating a comic book series of the character wouldn’t happen until 1994 through Dark Horse Comics imprint, Legend (a creator-owned imprint project started by Byrne and Frank Miller that would last through 1998).
And in July 1994, the issue of the first mini-series was released.
“Babe” begins with scum theatrical talent agent Ralph Rowan driving through the rain from a party upset that he was unable to find a woman that he can represent. While driving, he encounters a nude woman with long red hair.
She doesn’t speak any words, but because he calls her “Babe”, it’s the name she responds to.
Not wanting to be stuck with the woman, he drops her off at the police department and leaves.
When he wakes up the following morning, Ralph finds out that his rival Gideon Longshadow had reclaimed the woman from the police department and is not thrilled he has lost to her. So when Ralph goes to Longshadow’s mansion, he sees Babe in one of the windows. Calling out her name Babe destroys the wall with one push.
As security goes after them, they are stuck inside the home but once again, Babe uses her super strength and destroys the wall with ease.
Wanting to exploit Babe and her superhuman strength, Ralph Rowan now wants to book his talent in all shows possible.
For those who grew up reading John Byrne’s work on “She-Hulk”, you can’t help be thrilled by his work for “Babe”. She’s tall, she’s powerful and no doubt mysterious, especially when you get to the final page of the first issue, you can only think that all hell will break loose.
But it’s a lighthearted story for sure. While Ralph Rowan is a scumbag that thinks about becoming the best talent agent, despite not doing well at all, to the point he can’t pay his employee/secretary, now that he has found Babe, his life and luck will eventually change (for better or for worse?).
Nevertheless, another entertaining comic book series and character from John Byrne.