Tuesday, May 5, 2015


A Timeline of the Black Centipede's World (contains spoilers)
Here is my partial timeline, as it stands now, of the history of the Black Centipede's world:

1852: November 27-- Apparent death of Ada Lovelace (Daughter of Lord Byron and reigning White Centipede.)

1860: Jack the Ripper discovers the mysterious Order of the Centipede, and sets into motion his plans to subvert and take control of the organization.

1871: October 18--  Death of Charles Babbage; Jack the Ripper takes possession of Babbage's advanced designs for his Analytical Engine, and begins construction on his own machine.

1885: Alice Crook aka Vionna Moriarty born  April 18.

1888: The Ripper performs a powerful blood ritual, murdering five woman in London, including Mary Jane Kelly.
A time-traveling Vionna Valis helps Sherlock Holmes investigate the Ripper murders.
Professor Moriarty makes a deal with Dracula.

1891: Death and vampiric rebirth of Moriarty. Sherlock Holmes presumed dead.

1892: Lizzie Borden and Jack the Ripper create Bloody Mary Jane; Andrew and Abby Borden murdered.
Bloody Mary Jane travels to Florida, where she meets Juan Ponce de Leon, Cotton Mather, the fugitive Ada Lovelace, and the vampire Moriarty.
Later in the year, Bloody Mary Jane accompanies Moriarty's daughter Vionna to Russia, where she will live with the family of  Tsarevich Nicholas.

1894:  Tsarevich Nicholas becomes Tsar Nicholas II.

1897: A mysterious alien craft crashes in Aurora Texas. Jack the Ripper takes possession of the pilot's remains.

1903: Under the direction of Jack the Ripper, Grigori Yefimovich Rasputin becomes the new White Centipede.

1905:  Rasputin is introduced to Nicholas II and Alexandra.

1908: Professor Moriarty assassinates Count Dracula in Tunguska and becomes Lord of the Undead.

1911: Feb. 5-- Birth of William ---------, the future Black Centipede.

1920s: William befriends writer Howard Phillips Lovecraft.

1927: "Forty Whacks" William meets Lizzie Borden and Bloody Mary Jane; becomes the Black Centipede.

1927-1932: William goes to work for his grandfather, then travels the world to pursue his self-training. William encounters the faceless Russian assassin Anonymoushka, and has many other adventures. He jousts on several occasions with Bloody Mary Jane. Meets Doctor Raoul Unknown.

1932: William returns to Zenith.

1932-1933: "Creeping Dawn" - The Black Centipede begins his career in Zenith, meets Frank Nitti, Percival Doiley, Baron Samedi, Stanley Bartowski and William Randolph Hearst. The origins of Doctor Almanac and the Stiff.

"Funeral for a Fiend" - Ties up a loose end from Ceeping Dawn

Carlton "Spuds" Dietrich served two terms as mayor of the city of Zenith during the 1930s. He was every bit as corrupt as he was inept, making him the preferred candidate among the movers and shakers in the city's criminal underworld. Dietrich was first elected in 1931, shortly after his release from Winnemac State Prison, where he had served a three-year term for fraud and price fixing while he was a member of the city council. 

Most observers attributed Dietrich's victory to the unique touch of his campaign manager, Frenchy Donovan. One of Zenith's most prominent racketeers, Donovan took time off from his duties in order to work full-time for the candidate. During a press conference held to kick off Dietrich's campaign, Donovan announced that he had "found the Lord," and was "turning over a new leaf." 

Interestingly, Dietrich received 104 percent of the popular vote. When confronted by the press after it was learned that many of the voters listed in the rolls had in fact passed away weeks or months prior to the election, Donovan made reference to the Biblical miracle of Lazarus and thanked the Lord for His good work.

Dietrich's opponent, Morton Beltrane, demanded a recount and vowed to take his case all the way to the Supreme Court if necessary. He was on his way to the federal courthouse to file the paperwork when he was accidentally run over by an unidentified man driving a car with no license plates. Four times. 

One of Dietrich's first acts upon taking office was to officially designate February 9 - 15, 1931, as "Beltrane Memorial Automobile Safety Awareness Week."

1933: "Blood of the Centipede" - The Black Centipede meets Amelia Earhart and travels to Hollywood to consult on the Hearst-financed motion picture "Blood of the Centipede." There, he encounters the Black Centipede Eater, the White Centipede, and Jack the Ripper.

"The Plague's the Thing" - Standalone story featuring Amelia Earhart and the diabolical Rev. Dr. Theobald Schadelhaus.

"The Return of Doctor Reverso"
Doctor Almanac makes a brief return. Anonymoushka shows up again.

"Black Centipede Confidential."
Moriarty descends on Zenith, intent on possessing the Analytical Engine.

Actor Lancelot Cromwell, star of the movie "Blood of the Centipede" decides to fight crime in the guise of the Red Dagger. Things do not go swimmingly.

1934: The Centipede's first recorded battle with super-criminal Adrian Countenance; the Centipede meets William S. Burroughs.

1937: March 1-- The Centipede is visited by Vionna Valis and Mary Jane Kelly from the year 2012, and Dana Unknown from the year 2112. March 15-- Death of H.P. Lovecraft July 2-- Disappearance of Amelia Earhart

1940: Elena Milagro de Hoyos is resurrected by Carl Von Cosel. Elena is infected with a mutant strain of bubonic plague; she is stopped by the Centipede and Doctor Unknown before she can contaminate a large portion of the United States.

1942: Moriarty escapes from Area 51.

1952: "Gasp, Choke Good Lord!" The Centipede meets Dr. Frederic Wertham, William M. Gaines and Albert Fish.

1957: "Wisconsin Death Trip." The Centipede encounters Ed Gein and his mother.

1963: John F. Kennedy is assassinated in Dallas. The Black Centipede tries and fails to prevent the president's death.

1972: The Black Centipede uncovers the horrible plot being hatched by Richard Nixon, who is really [REDACTED] and J. Edgar Hoover.

May 2-- Death of J. Edgar Hoover; the Centipede, wanted for his murder, becomes a fugitive. Hoover's death ruins [REDACTED]'s immediate plans. Thinking it unwise at this point to assassinate the President of the United States, the Centipede decides to keep Nixon too busy to regroup.

Late 1972 through 1973-- Working undercover, the Centipede makes the acquaintance of G. Gordon Liddy and the inner circle of White House henchmen. He suggests, plans and helps orchestrate the Watergate break-in. He makes sure the burglars are caught. He continues to gather information, then begins leaking it to reporters Woodward and Bernstein.

1974: August 8-- Nixon resigns.

1978: The Centipede is captured by authorities in California and committed to the Napa State Mental Hospital. The hospital's new administrator turns out to be Adrian Countenance, who has a sinister agenda. With the help of a rock band called the Cramps, the Centipede defeats Countenance and escapes.

Twenty - Fifteen Years Ago: Zenith experiences a brief but very unpleasant super-heroic age. Commander Power, Captain Ultra-Superior Man, Captain Triangle, the New Red Dagger, Doctor Unknown, Captain Mercury and others form a new Legion of Law and Order, which limps along for a little over three years. The group self-destructs when their quest to bring the Black Centipede to justice turns into an unmitigated catastrophe.

Twelve Years Ago:
Captain Ultra-Superior Man disappears, and Commander Power and Captain Mercury are killed by Professor Ulysses Ubik. Jack Christian, the former Kid Mercury, goes off the deep end.

Eleven Years Ago: More than two million people die worldwide during the Little Precious Crisis. The bizarre cybernetic super-terrorist goes on a four-day rampage of destruction. Jessie Von Cosel, the eight-year-old human half of the binary consciousness known as Little Precious is tried and imprisoned on a refurbished Alcatraz Island. The robot that was the other half of the Little Precious organism is not found. (Rumors of the involvement of Professor James Moriarty, Lord of the Vampires, are addressed in "The Return of Little Precious.")

Seven Years Ago: Doctor Unknown Senior accidentally destroys the world. Though he and his daughter, Dana Unknown, are able to reboot the timestream and erase the episode from history, he is a broken man. He retires and slips into alcoholic obscurity. Dana takes over his duties, as Doctor Unknown Junior.

2011- Present: "The Optimist" Jack Christian returns to Zenith, where a shadowy crime lord called Melmoth has been consolidating his power. The Black Centipede is trying to track Melmoth down. Mary Jane Kelly and the Ripper's other victims are resurrected in the Black Centipede's Orgone Superaccumulator.

"Close Encounters of a Kind We'd Rather Not Think About" Vionna Valis and Mary Jane Kelly incorporate the Whitechapel Vigilance Committee Psychic Detective Agency.

"The Abominable Myra Linsky Rises Again" Jack goes to work with Dana Unknown. This story is both prequel and sequel to "Blood of the Centipede." The White Centipede is resurrected.

"Vionna and the Vampires" Moriarty makes his last stand. Or does he?

"The Return of Little Precious." Jack and Dana battle Little Precious and the White Centipede. (COMING SOON!)

A young Vionna Valis, ready for action.