Comic Book / Brute Force

"Protectors of the Environment!"

Brute Force is a short lived (4 issues, August-November, 1990) Marvel Comics creation, originally by Charles Viola, written by Simon Furman, and illustrated by Jose Delbo. It stars a team of animal cyborgs known as "Brute Force", later opposed by another team of cyborg animals known as "Heavy Metal". It existed as a shameless attempt to sell toys (without a toyline, Marvel was allegedly expecting toy companies to buy the toy rights). Nowadays best known for Atop the Fourth Wall's reviews of the whole series.

The book was meant to be part of Marvel's Star Comics line of kid's comics, going as far as having ads for that line in the issues instead of the mainline Marvel books.

The team made a return in the Deadpool Bi-Annual, going up against Deadpool.

Not to be confused with We3 or the Xbox game or the arcade game with the same name.

Brute Force has examples of:

  • Animal Stereotypes:
    • The heroic animals of Brute Force are a lion (Lionheart), an eagle (Soar), a dolphin (Surfstreak/Dr. Echo), a grizzly bear (Wreckless/Bear), and a kangaroo (Hiphop/Boomer).
    • Heavy Metal is made up of mostly "evil" animals: a shark (Bloodbath), a rhinoceros (Ramrod), an octopus (Armory), a vulture (Tailgunner), and a gorilla (Uproar).
    • Deadpool's plan to take out Lionheart is to have him chase after a laser pointer. The sad part is that this works perfectly.
    • Soar, when leader of the group, set out on a campaign to destroy... snakes. Literally, he had the group chasing snakes for months because eagles don't like snakes.
  • Anti-Hero: Lionheart. There's a time for lambs and there's a time for lions.
  • Badass Normal: Dr. Pierce takes out two security guards off-screen on his own.
    • Car Fu: As well as taking out a mercenary by driving a jeep into him.
  • Berserk Button: Lionheart doesn't like water. At all.
  • Bloodier and Gorier: Being a vehicle for toys, the original comics were mostly kid friendly. The crossover with Deadpool does not tone down the Merc's violent ways, and the team themselves are shown violently killing dozens of bad guys.
  • The Bus Came Back: After fading into the mists of obscurity for years, the team's finally making their big comeback in the Deadpool Bi-Annual.
  • Corrupt Corporate Executive: The foes Brute Force fought were this, or working for an executive: either the head of Multicorp, Frost, or the Philanthropist Businessman (DeMal who wanted to turn all of humanity into pollution breathing mutants.
    • The CEO of Water World wants to use high ticket prices to his parks and inhumane conditions to fund an army of Brute Force-esque sea life to take over the world.
  • Five-Man Band:
  • For the Evulz: There's no real logical reason for Frost or the head of Not-Sea World to be evil. They just are.
    • Averted with DeMal- he has a reason for being evil, namely, he thinks his plan is the only one that will allow mankind and nature to survive, undercut by that he's... well, kind of insane, and his plan is cribbed straight from The Airzone Solution.
  • Green Aesop: They're a group dedicated to the protection of Earth from pollution and environmental destruction. This was somewhat inevitable.
  • Hoist by His Own Petard: The CEO of Water World manages two in as many pages: He hoists Deadpool and Brute Force by bringing out Tatanka-Tank, a Killer Whale made of the same technology that Brute Force uses, and which is capable of taking out the whole team. This technology wouldn't have been acquired if Brute Force hadn't attacked Water World in the first place, and if Deadpool hadn't cut off Dr. Echo's robot arms, which were used to reverse-engineer the technology. On the other hand, the CEO is immediately killed by Tatanka-Tank.
  • How Do I Shot Web?: It turns out that if you slap power armor onto random animals and give them incredibly deadly weapons of war, there might be some teething issues. Brute Force, in their first outing, nearly causes as much destruction as the mercenaries they're trying to stop, and when they first fight Deadpool, the various members fight among themselves more often than they do their foes (to the point where Soar and Lionheart knock themselves out while trying to attack Deadpool). Heavy Metal... fails nearly every single mission they are assigned to, usually catastrophically. Tatanka-Tank, being a heavily abused killer whale, immediately turns on his boss, killing him in seconds.
  • Kid-Appeal Character: Hiphop the kangaroo, who loves music and has a surfer-dude mentality.
  • Mega Corp.: Multicorp employs its own mercenary outfit and owns its own farms.
  • Merchandise-Driven: An interesting example as the series was purportedly created by Marvel with the hopes that toy companies would jump on board and create toys of the characters, but to no avail. Word of God from series editor Bob Budiansky was that Marvel's then-Editor-In-Chief Tom DeFalco was the main motivator for the series.
  • Monster Clown: The first panel in the entire series shows a group of clowns wielding machine guns bursting into a high-tech lab to steal a gorilla being given cybernetic upgrades. Not only does this establish precisely how utterly mad this series could get, it's actually evidence of a later plot point.
  • Power Armor: It's what gives the animals their human-level intelligence, speech, and various powers and weapons.
  • The Psycho Rangers: Each member of Heavy Metal is a Foil for one of the members of Brute Force:
    • Armory (octopus) is the opposite of Hiphop (kangaroo), as his arms were supposed to restrict Hiphop's leaping.
    • Bloodbath (shark) is a rival to Surfstreak (dolphin), as sharks and dolphins are natural enemies.
    • Ramrod (rhinoceros) is the counter to Lionheart (lion), as rhinos hate lions.
    • Tailgunner (vulture) is an evil counterpart to Soar (eagle).
    • Uproar (gorilla) is this to Wreckless (bear), as their strength levels should be comparable.
  • Reality Ensues: Strapping rocket launchers and laser guns to animals might run into some problems. The collateral damage and screwups that ensue are spectacular.
  • Rule of Cool: Who needs logic when you can have ROBO-BEAR VERSUS CYBER-GORILLA?
  • Self-Deprecation: When Deadpool has the concept of Brute Force explained to him, he says the kids will go crazy for it. A footnote points out "They did not."
  • Shout-Out: The "I Am... Bear?" line in the Deadpool Bi-Annual is believed to be a reference to Linkara's "I am a Man!" running gag, especially since he played a large role in bringing the team back into the public eye. Linkara's said he'd be honored if true.
  • Super Prototype: A less extreme example: the gorilla was the first to receive the upgrades, and later becomes the leader- and strongest member- of Heavy Metal.
  • Teenage Mutant Samurai Wombats: Marvel's attempt at this trope.
  • Took a Level in Badass: In the Deadpool crossover Surfstreak, now called Dr. Echo, was in charge of upgrading the team's armor. He explicitly compared it to Iron Man's Extremis upgrade, but without the "bugs and limitations" that Tony kept in his version.
    • On the other hand, Deadpool's plan for taking him out is to fill a pool with elbow macaroni and letting the stress of "Things not being in the right place," take him out.
  • Totally Radical: Hiphop talks like this.
  • Unusually Uninteresting Sight: The (working) animal augmentation program appears to be public knowledge, but the people you think would care don't seem to.
    • The fact that cyborg animals with deadly weapons attacked Water World is shoved off the news quickly because "Are Frisbees Back?" On the other hand, not only is this the Marvel Universe, where this is far from the weirdest news story one could conceive of, but Water World's CEO is trying to prevent people from knowing his parks are being targeted.
  • Uplifted Animal: All of the animal characters.
  • Weaponized Animal: The animals' uplift suits include built-in weapons systems.
    • The CEO of Water World wants Brute Force technology to create an army of marine life to take over the world.
  • Well-Intentioned Extremist: The main villain from the third issue is a rather stupid example; he wants to create lifeforms that thrive on pollution, but his plans would most likely end up on the rest of the earth nuking him.
    • In the Deadpool crossover, it's revealed they turned against Dr. Pierce and went rogue to rescue animals from human abuse.
  • Western Terrorists: Of the Eco-terroist variety.
  • What Happened to the Mouse?: Dr. Pierce, the scientist behind Brute Force, is absent in the the teams reappearance in Deadpool Bi-Annual, with the only explanation given being that the latter turned on the former. Lampshaded by Linkara, who notes that in the years since their last issue, a lot has happened in the Marvel universe that would have resulted in Pierce either dying or severing ties with Brute Force.
  • You Fail Logic Forever: Multicorp preforms armed robberies on its own child companies because... uh... they're evil?