Obnoxio the Clown vs. the X-Men #1 (1983)
Our first story opens with Obnoxio the Clown arriving in Salem Center, where he’d been hired by Professor X to perform for Kitty Pryde’s some-teenth birthday. Ya see, young Ms. Pryde is a hyooge fan of Marvel’s humor mag, Crazy… of which, Obnoxio the Clown is the “star”. Well, the very moment the clown arrives, Cerebro starts pinging like crazy… alerting the Professor to the fact that there’s a new mutant on the scene. In fact, the pinging is so powerful, it overloads some sort of feedback loop, which knocks the Prof completely unconscious!
Cyclops rushes in to check on the commotion, and is shocked to see his mentor kayoed on the ground. He rushes outside to call the rest of the team to action… as it looks as though the mansion is currently under attack. If you’re thinking that Obnoxio the Clown has just been outed as a mutant… well, not so fast, kemosabe – Obnoxio may be a lot of things… a scumbag, a drunk, and a snappy dresser… but he ain’t no mutant. The thing that made Cerebro ping is… the most sensational (non-Eques) Mutant Character Find of 1983: Eye-Scream! Uh, yeah… a mutant with the power to transform into whatever flavor of ice cream he so desires. A mutant who only appears in this very issue, and never again. Dawn of X, my ass. How you gonna kick off a brave new era of X-Men comics, and not bring back Eye-Scream?!
Meanwhile, Obnoxio the Clown goes to ring the doorbell of Xavier’s… and accidentally triggers the trap-door under the floor mat. Ah, the classics! This sends him down to the sub-basement of the joint… where he needs to think up a clever way to escape. He settles on lighting one of his CO₂ chargers for his silly seltzer bottle with his stogie… blowing out the double-tough walls of the dungeon with a FRUMP.
Obnoxio winds up walking right into the X-Men… who immediately assume he’s the enemy. Even Kitty Pryde, the self-professed Crazy fanatic doesn’t seem to recognize her hero! Worth noting, our clown refers to the X-Men as the “Legion of Super-Pests”, which is sort of cute.
Nearby, Eye-Scream makes his way to the vaunted Danger Room… which, uh… has just an ordinary door with the sign that reads “Danger Room” on it. I was expecting so much more. Now, the door is locked (duh), but our new favorite mutant has something of a skeleton key in that he can, ya know, turn into ice cream. And so, he takes the form of… a banana split? That’s not an ice cream flavor, right? That’s just something you make with ice cream… Oh well, we’ll allow it.
So, Eye-Scream is in the Danger Room… and the X-Men have their hands full fighting (and getting their butts handed to them by) Obnoxio the Clown. I mean, it’s really quite embarrassing for our heroes.
By now, Eye-Scream has figured out how to activate the Danger Room… which triggers all manner of traps and gimmicks. Obnoxio finds himself trapped within… and the X-Men are locked out. Now, the Danger Room door looks like a blast-door or something, like they might have on the Death Star… but, whattayagonnado?
The Danger Room begins filling with water… leaving poor Obnoxio to use an inflated rubber chicken as a breathing apparatus. Lucky for him, on the other side of the door, Wolverine is slicing and dicing with his claws. It isn’t long before the hobo clown is rescued. Wolverine, however, looks like he’s about to exact a bit of revenge on the ol’ painted jester.
That is, until he gets a psychic summons from the once again awake Professor X. They head into the Danger Room command station… and find the Prof, and Eye-Scream… that latter of whom is “on ice”, as in frozen stiff. Not sure how or when that happened… though, Obnoxio did throw a cream pie at him a bit earlier. I guess that’s as good a guess as any? He informs the crew that Obnoxio is their guest… and is here for Kitty’s birthday. Kitty doesn’t seem to have the foggiest idea what he’s talking about. Anyhoo… the day is saved, and the clown leaves. Whatever happened to Eye-Scream is anybody’s guess…
Next we get a one-pager called “Obnoxio the Clown’s Abuse Page”, where our hero personally responds to readers of Crazy Magazine’s missives. It’s… well… uh, it’s drawn nicely enough. It isn’t funny by any definition of the word… but, well… it’s there!
Our second feature opens with Obnoxio taking the train back from Westchester… so, we might assume that this is a continuation from his run-in with the X-Men? I’m going to say it was… otherwise, why would I bother even covering it? It’s a long ride… and a long walk. Once he finally returns to his palatial abode, he is stunned to learn he’s received a summons for Jury Duty! What’s more, it’s a summons to appear that very day!
And so, we follow him down to the courthouse, where he’s sat in a great big room full of other unfortunates with summons’s’s’s to appear. It’s… uh, not very funny.
Our hero steps outside to have himself a smoke… when he happens across a heist in progress. A gaggle of black-clad geeks are in the process of stealing… mannequins?
The bad guys are completely out to lunch, and as such… they try and lift and swipe Obnoxio himself! Once they realize he’s, ya know, a smelly old pervert and not a limbless mannequin, they drop him and scatter like… well, things that scatter.
They run right into the court room, with Obnoxio hot on their trail. The Clown stops to chat with Dennis the Menace’s father for a moment, and the Judge decides to adjourn the court until after the pending chase scene.
The chase goes outside the building, where the would-be robbers run into a… regular dude, and get knocked off their feet. The Police arrive, and arrest ’em… and all looks to be good.
When reporters begin to arrive, Obnoxio begins juggling… hopeful to get some good publicity. The judge decides to excuse our hero from serving on a jury… and so, we follow him home. This time, he’s greeted by a stack of bills. Wonk, wonk, wonnnnnnk?
Finally, we wrap up the issue with another one-pager. This one’s called “Dear Flabby” and is credited to “Abigail Van Kupperberg”. It’s an advertisement for Marvel subscriptions disguised as an advice column. It ends with Obnoxio being straitjacketed and dragged away.
2 thoughts on “Obnoxio the Clown vs. the X-Men #1 (1983)”
The only thing I remember about this comic is how sweet Obnoxio's big black eyes looked on the cover. What a li'l anjil.
You want to add Crimson Daffodil from the Mutant Misadventures of Cloak and Dagger to that team and call them The RejeX.