On to the Land of 10,000 Lakes — Minnesota …
LAKE VESUVIUS (The Vault)
With the advent of new laws that make the use of superhuman powers, abilities or devices in the commission of a crime a federal offense, all superhuman criminals are currently shipped to the new Vault, located on an island on Lake Vesuvius, a (totally made-up and) remote lake near the Canadian Border. There, the multi-level dungeon-like prison houses some of America’s most dangerous criminals — those with super powers.
Notes: Lake Vesuvius actually the name of a park I drive by when I visit relatives in Ohio. I figured it would always make a cool name for something like this. Anyway, like I did with the Sanitarium in Montana, this facility is specifically set away from any major population center to help control any outbreaks. Still, it would be an hour’s flight out of Minneapolis.
MINNEAPOLIS (She-Hulk, Southpaw and Goodman, Lieber, Kurtzberg & Holliway)
Nearly all federal charges for suspected super criminals are held at federal courts in Minneapolis, where more often than not the law offices of Goodman, Lieber, Kurtzberg & Holliway are used by moneyed suspects. This law office is known the world over for its unique and creative defense in cases of superhuman crime. The office has a number of superhuman operatives, including Ditto, Whiz Kid and, until recently the Mad Thinker’s Awesome Android, who all reside in the Minneapolis area.
Notes: It only makes sense to put the world’s top superhuman speciality law firm near one of the biggest superhuman containment facilities, right? Aside from their headquarters here, they’d naturally have satellite offices in New York, Dallas and Los Angeles.
She-Hulk, who was also a one-time employee for GLK&H, has been in Minneapolis for years, and her training as an attorney and her own superhuman abilities made her a natural match for the law office. Since leaving the firm, She-Hulk now works as a skip-tracer for the federal courts in Minneapolis, hunting down supercrime suspects when they fail to show up for bail or escape their temporary holding facilities before transfer to the Vault. Additionally, She-Hulk is a member in good standing in the Avengers and a reserve member of the Fantastic Four. Activities related to these groups, and her own duties in Minnesota keep her quite busy. Naturally, her towering phsyique and good looks have made her a favorite among Minnesotans and the country as a whole. Because of this popularity there’s even a some interest among the tabloids with her personal life.
Notes: I’ve always dug the She-Hulk. She’s funny and powerful. You can’t beat that. Anyway, she seems like the perfect anchor-hero for Minneapolis. I don’t think this as dumping her off here or anything. Given her immunities, I figure she’d be just as happy in the chilly Minnesota climates as she would anywhere else.
As a family member of one of the key employees at GLK&H, the super known as Southpaw works under She-Hulk’s tutelage. Together, the two work the bail-jumper beat to earn their keep. But alone? Southpaw is a whole different kind of person. Without She-Hulk around to keep her on the straight-and-narrow, Southpaw is a rabble-rouser, often getting into more trouble than she’s worth. From club-hopping shenanigans to nasty public outbursts, Southpaw is a confusing, angry kid who craves attention more than anything.
Notes: While She-Hulk would love Minneapolis, Southpaw would most certainly hate it. Though she’s bratty about it and all, she’d eventually grow to like the area, just like any teen who grows up in a cool town, but is too afraid to realize it.
ST. PAUL (Two-Gun Kid)
The Two-Gun Kid, another fixture at the GLK&H offices, set up shop in St. Paul, the city next door to Minneapolis. There he rides on borrowed skycycle and uses some high-tech crowd-control weapons as he deals Old West justice to any varmints who cross the city line. Rather than fearing his new time period, 2GK is having a rollickin’ good time and regularly squares off against villains who could squash him like a bug, and his efforts prove that being a hero is more about attitiude than it is about having super powers.
Notes: Of course, 2GK would always keep his trusty six-shooters, but he’d also be totally geared up with the latest super-busting equipment out there. Think of him as a sunny Punisher.
Rochester is home to Equinox (from Avengers: The Initiative), a hero in the making who wields the powers of flame and ice as he reluctantly defends his hometown. “Defend” probably isn’t even the best word for his actions. Instead, he simply has frequent, destructive spats where he’s usually lucky enough to be the one who looks like the good guy. Still, being based in Minnesota is a perfect place for super with an ability to manipulate such extreme temperatures. On the most frigid of days, he can fire things up with bolts of plasma. On those hot, muggy “Tornado-maker” days, he can ice up an enemy with a freezing punch. Equinox has found that while being a “hero” doesn’t pay the bills, he can use his powers to do so — and he works most of his days as an on-call rescue diver and extreme-weather search-and-rescue tracker. He, unlike most humans, can respond in any environmental conditions, and in Minnesota, that’s the way of life. Sure, it’s not glamorous, but at least it puts food on the table.
Notes: Talk about reluctant hero. Equinox is quite a mercenary in his heroing. Sure, he’ll help you, but you practically have to sign a contract for him to help him. You’ll also notice that Equinox is one of those in a long string of “rescuers” in this series. I just figure that there are so many of these guys who can tough out the worst of it. I figure that they’d be called upon all the time to help out. Some are nice about it. Some aren’t, and those that aren’t are only barely tolerated by their locals.
What’s “Relocating the Marvel Universe,” anyway? Well, check out the series hub, which includes a complete list of states, here.