I’m looking out the window right now and all I see is snow. Yep, more snow. I am so sick of snow.
Winter is a funny thing. When it’s late December you think to yourself “Wouldn’t it be nice to get a little snow, have a White Christmas for once?” It usually doesn’t happen. But then January rolls around and you start getting snow… and more snow… and still more snow. So much snow that by the time you hit March and you’ve spent most of the last month suffering from a bad cold you’re literally shaking your fist and crying out “No! Not more snow! When is this winter going to end?!?”
I’m starting to think that Orrgo the Unconquerable is responsible for all of this snow.
Orrgo the Unconquerable is one of those numerous oddball monsters who first appeared between the mid 1950s and early 60s in stories published by Marvel Comics before they began their groundbreaking superhero revival in late 1961. These were pretty formulaic affairs which involved some seemingly-unstoppable menace from beyond threating the whole of humanity, until the day is saved in a convenient last-minute (and often left-field) twist.
What caused many of these monsters to stand out were the bizarre designs they were given by artists Jack Kirby and Steve Ditko, plus the offbeat names that writer / editor Stan Lee gave them. That’s certainly the case with Orrgo.
Orrgo first appeared in Strange Tales #90, cover-dated November 1961 (the same month as Fantastic Four #1) in a story illustrated by Kirby and inker Dick Ayers. According to the Grand Comics Database, the story was probably plotted by Lee and scripted by Larry Lieber.
An alien invader of seemingly-unlimited power, Orrgo sets out to conquer the Earth. All of humanity’s weapons are totally powerless against him. As seen above, he even freezes the city of Washington DC in a sold block of ice.
Eventually Orrgo decides to hypnotize the entire planet into obeying him. Having defeated humanity, Orrgo then returns to the circus where he first arrived on Earth and takes a nap under a tree. Well, even when you are an “unconquerable” menace, I expect that it is still a bit of work to crush whole worlds under your heel, and you eventually need to get some shut-eye.
Unfortunately for Orrgo, while he is catching some zzz’s, and the Earth’s population is in a hypnotic trance, the circus gorilla Jo-Jo breaks loose, furious that he hasn’t been fed. Sensing that Orrgo is somehow responsible for his missing meals, the gorilla smashes the slumbering alien conquerer in the head, killing him.
Yeah, I did mention those last-minute, left-field resolutions, didn’t I?!?
You can read the entire story “Orrgo the Unconquerable” from Strange Tales #90 on The Golden Age blog.
Anyway, this is comic books, and no one ever stays dead forever. Along with various other “pre-hero” monsters, Orrgo (or at least another member of his race) has been brought back on a few occasions by Marvel. Most notably, Orrgo resurfaced in the bizarre yet fun Defenders revival by Kurt Busiek & Erik Larsen that ran from 2001 to 2002. Orrgo was summoned by that supremely weird group of villains known as the Headmen, who used him to temporarily take over the world.
So, yeah, given his penchant for fast-freezing entire metropolitan areas, I would not be at all surprised to learn that Orrgo the Unconquerable is responsible for this awful winter weather. To which I can only say… knock it off buddy, before I send another gorilla to bop you on the noggin!