Moving along the coastline from Florida, we hit Alabama next. There aren’t too many big cities in Alabama, and as such, there aren’t too many big heroes in the state either.
Making every effort to be the protector of the Gulf of Mexico, Stingray (at left) bases himself out of Mobile, as Alabama’s primary port city, he spends far more time out in the Gulf of Mexico’s Hydrobase than at his adopted land-based home town. Wth family and friends in the port city, he swings inland now and again to help. In particular, he’s known for helping out oil riggers, shrimp boaters and even cruise liners in times of need. And during hurricane season, he’s especially busy helping those same folks.
Notes: I located the Hydrobase in the Gulf of Mexico because I find it strange how largely ignored it is by comic-book writers. Aside from that, the gulf is probably going to give you a lot more exotic environments than the Atlantic Ocean near Massachusetts. Beyond that, what’s going on in the gulf is a lot more interesting, too. You’ve got hurricanes, cruise lines, oil rigs, treasure hunters and fishing.
BIRMINGHAM (Strong Guy, Dominic Fortune and Harrier)
The mercenary Dominic Fortune earned his Birmingham mansion in a poker game, and has stuck around ever since, transforming the estate into a top-notch training center for non-powered adventurerers. He’s found providing such a facility is the best way he can keep himself informed on who’s the best in the business. His activities have run him afoul of the Taskmaster, who runs a similar training facility in New Jersey. Though Fortune keeps a low profile, some of his activities have been known to spill out on the streets of Birmingham, where he does his best to stay friendly, clean up his own messes and not garner too much attention.
Rocking roadie Strong Guy grew up in the southern sprawl of Birmingham, where he rolled with the good ole boys for many years. Eventually his wanderlust grew, and he hitched up with rocker Lila Cheney, from there, the mutant traveled the world and the universe. After stints with X-Factor, he always returns home to Birmingham. Though a reluctant super-hero at best, Strong Guy is definitely a fan of fighting, so he often comes to his hometown’s aide whenever the need arises.
After a stint with the Masters of Evil, the Air Force veteran Donald Clendenon, better known as Harrier (at right) returned to his hometown. Hoping to make a difference, he made a deal with his parole officer and the local authorities. He would be allowed to resume his armored identity if he wore an ankle bracelet and mount a mini-cam on his armor that tracked all of his activities as Harrier.
Notes: Birmingham is a decent sized city, and one that is historically important. That’s why I put old-timer Dominic Fortune here. Sure, he’s a mercenary, but he’s a respectable one. With that in mind, I figured he’d work great in a Southern setting. Strong Guy was moved here from New York, where he’s portrayed as a surly Italian. I don’t think it’s a stretch to transmorgify him into a redneck hero. And I don’t mean that as an insult either. He’s always written as a guy who can get along with anyone, have fun anywhere and always look cool doing it. Harrier is one of those obscure heroes who rose above his villainous ways. He first popped up in New Warriors, and deserves a small role somewhere. Why not Birmingham?
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