Before Icon branding, any super picking up a name did so with the high possibility that somebody else already had taken it, somebody else would take it, or that it suited somebody else better. In 1910, for instance, there were no less than eight supers operating under the unoriginal moniker Hot Shot in New York alone. They can be broken down as such:
“Hot Shots One & Two” were boys from the Robin Hood; accuracy lads of bow, blade and blunderbuss. They’d found out about each other, in that community of five guys that ran the capes-and-catapults gig at the time. In the end it came down to a duel. It always did with the types whose ‘powers’ were accuracy or strategy; no power at all, many considered.
With a lot to prove both had wounded a couple of egos in exclusively winning monikers like the ‘Sherwood Shaft’ and the ‘Green Hood’. To keep the title of “Hot Shot”, they’d wound far more than egos, and they exchanged shots from sun up to sundown. They did this for three days: first with bows, second with bullets, third with blades. Partly because they were entirely equal in all matters, partly because they’d done next to nothing for crimefighting in New York with their grandstanding, they mutually acquiesced.
In a bid for commiseration and consolidation, they ditched the “Hot Shot angle”. One and Two thus became respectively became the duo “Trick Shot” and “Quick Shot”. Not all that cinematic; they never broke beyond street violence and kids parties. But it mattered to them I suppose.
Such things would to men in matching red and black leotards.
“Hot Shot Three”: Never really operated in New York to tell the truth, just used to come to the Smithsonian to work with Professor Prandial, but all that stopped after the good professor played technical confessor to one too many supers and started wearing a cape himself. That damned experimental rocket pack. They should never have classified jet back-packing as a sport.
Sufficed to say, Prandial’s fireworks work was far more successful for his subjects than himself and “Hot Shot Three’s” fire/metallurgy powers increased, later becoming known as “Meat/Ore”, later “MeteOracle”. Linked to UFO cult in the 1980s, and in no part older then than in 1910.
Except his eyes. Of course.
“Hot Shot Four” was the signee in a Faustian bargain for super powers. It was never fully determined whether he meant to fight good or for ill, as he seemed to do both with equal aplomb. Going under “Flare”, “Fire Hazard” and, of course, “Hot Shot”, if “Hot Shot Four” had ever been accredited with stopping a robbery, the damage he did to the victim’s premises in the meantime usually exceeded the value of the item rescued. Usual ironic bargain rules applied of course, and in time “Hot Shot Four” simply decided to donate his considerable talents to full-time evil, rather than the part-time incompetent kind.
Got to be known in certain circles, but by the time he’d racked up a couple of real nemeses, his year and a day were up and he disappeared while screaming in Central Park, in spot where nothing but wolfsbane grows to this day. A lost soul, “Hot Shot Four” is still thought by many to be still in Satan’s employ as “Ginfernal”, nemesis to “Ginferno”.
Others say the devil merely took away his ability to with stand the flames that constantly surrounded him. An Elegant Disposal.
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