It's no secret that a lot of comic book fans are geeks. We think that if only we could leap tall buildings in a single bound, we could be popular, and bag a babe. Superheros offer us an escape route. You get to fly, you stop being clumsy, and develop a bodybuilder's physique. All you have to do is get bitten by one radioactive spider, Not a bit of diet or exercise involved.

The thing is, once you get super powers you stop being a geek. Peter Parker became the wise-ass as Spider-Man that bullies would have knocked out of him in high school. Reed Richards started calling himself Mister Fantastic. No doubt about it, superpowers can go to your head.

But one super team never sacrificed their geekiness. Five Swell Guys were New York's resident super-- I mean science heroes until that mystic upstart, Promethea came along. Except for Stan the Mechanic, they wear a coat and tie on patrol . They don't have good bodies, except for Roger, who has a really good body, only she doesn't look much like a Roger.

They are the Five Swell Guys.

Bob is the leader. He has blonde hair, dresses in green and is impeccably coiffured in the most stylish of business suits. His super power is supposedly leadership, but really the others feel free to argue with him whenever. But then his superpower might simply be money, as he bankrolled the team. I guess cash can be used to fight the Evil it's rooted in.

Roger is the muscle. Roger has super strength, is nearly invulnerable and stacked. Roger is the transgendered member of the team, a red haired filly who used to be a fella. Alan Moore writes Roger as something of a brawler, with redhead's fiery temper. It isn't entirely clear that Roger's gender reassignment was voluntary, though she probably prefers herself that way.

And Bob thinks Roger's hot.

Marvel William Hamilton is the genius. Marv is a short, pudgy, bespectacled black man whom nobody would mistake for John Shaft. He's an intellectual, but he's also the detective and spokesman for the Five Swell Guys. He figures out the clues, and plans strategies.

Kenneth is the psychic. He's tall, thin, balding and his real mental powers did not even give him a clue that his wife was sleeping with her aerobics instructor. But he eventually did find out, and is divorced. But he is a real psychic, capable of mind reading and precognitive flashes. He is the first to recognize Sophie Banks as the next Promethea, and the most curious about New York's newest science hero.

Stan the mechanic always dresses in a blue workman's duds and cap. He's slim, balding, and middle-aged, and carries a tool box. Some of his tools glow with purple energy but his real power is that Stan is the human equivalent of a motie engineer, capable of whipping up almost any device out of an assemblage of parts. Stan built their flying platform and their space station, the High Five.

Together they have been stomping the Big Apple's science villians for a long time before Promethea manifests herself again. Their primary adversary is The Painted Doll an apparently unkillable psychopath who combines extraordinary agility with a taste for spectacular and creative murder.

They fight, the squabble, and don't try frenching Roger. But they're basically nice guys who look nothing like the muscle-bound stereotypical superhero. They act like a bunch of friends who woke up one day and discovered a couple had powers. And so they do their part, like the swell guys they are.

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