If your backyard or car was dirtied by any of those pesky haboobs that swept across the Metro Phoenix landscape the past few summers, feel free to blame local evildoer Doctor Anubis. Never heard of him? We hadn't either, until we encountered the heretofore unknown Valley villain at the Epic Super Hero Battle in Old Town Scottsdale this past Saturday.
The costumed comic book-style scoundrel, who bears a striking resemblance to podcaster/digital strategist Evo Terra, claims to have conjured up each of those chaotically massive dust storms via the ancient evil spirits that possess his body...or something to that effect.
Doctor Anubis and his alleged dirty deeds weren't the only kooky character or bizarre backstory that crossed our paths at the annual event, which is put on by the urban pranksters of Improv AZ and involves a rogue's gallery of unique local super heroes and super villains seeking adventure and doing battle against one another. Much like the Avengers initiative, we assembled a list of some of the most memorable costumed characters that participated in this weekend's event and apparently live among us mere mortals of the Valley. Excelsior!
7. Amorata Allignment: Hero Powers: Releasing repressed compassion in people so that it can pierce through the evil in people's hearts. Defining Characteristic: A towering black and white hairdo. Alter Ego: Erin Jeffries
6. Doctor Devolution Allignment: Villain Powers: Vast scientific knowledge and a ray gun that de-evolves humanoids into apes. Defining Characteristics: A blue energy dome helmet, goggles, and the willingness to cause homo sapiens to revert to their primitive state. "I was bitten by a radioactive ape and when I didn't develop super-powers, I became really upset and decided to de-evolve everybody into apes," he says. Alter Ego: Roy Evolution
5. The Night Night Defender Allignment: Hero Powers: Protecting people after they go to bed after being scared herself. "I get help from the sandman and I can project evil sand on the monsters." Defining Characteristics: Green longjohns and a stuffed animal sidekick. Alter Ego: Daleena Mendoza
4. Hatred Man Allignment: Villain Powers: The ability to hate anyone at any given time, as well as a talent for making people who feel good to suddenly change their mood and instead feel bad. Defining Characteristic: The plastic colander he wears for a helmet. "I love spaghetti," he says. "It's the only thing that Hatred Man can cook for his evil villainess." Alter Ego: Jason Harvey, a Starbucks barista.
3. Asymmetry Allignment: Hero Powers: Creating a sense of Zen and balance, even when the two sides are unequal. Can also emit force fields of positive energy. Defining Characteristic: Two opposite sides to her appearance and personality that work together to build harmony. Alter Ego: Heather Herr
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2. Doctor Anubis Allignment: Villain Powers: The aforementioned ability to summon haboobs. "I got a little out of control this past year," he claims. "It's been a little nasty." Defining Characteristics: Adorned in a pith helmet, wielding a magical staff, and cloaking his true identity with a masquerade-style eye mask, this evildoer was once an n archeologist who was subsumed one the dark spirit of one of his discoveries. Alter Ego: Evo Terra
1. The Great Rainbow Allignment: Hero Powers: "I love people to death. I use the power of love and empathy." Defining Characteristic: Like Superman, the Great Rainbow fell to earth, albeit via a rainbow instead of a flaming meteor. "I was raised by an Irish family that taught me good things about life," she says. "I make you feel so much love inside that you have to be compassionate." Alter Ego: Sky Boles