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Comic Books: Aerobic Duo

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About This Series:

The Aerobic Duo has an odd history in comics, indeed.  They were created by writer Bryan J.L. Glass and artist Michael Avon Oeming.  Always an independent comic, it originally went by the title "Lycra Woman & Spandex Girl".  It was a direct spoof on the 1976 Electra Woman & Dyna Girl segments of the "Krofft Supershow" TV series.  That, in turn, was a play on the campy 1966 "Batman" TV series.

Although not everyone would understand the reference to the shortlived Electra Woman & Dyna Girl, EVERYONE got the fact that it was a satire on comic book superheroines.  It was not a porno comic by any means, but it was most certainly suggestive and did all but show the women naked or committing sexual acts.  First and foremost, the series was meant to be funny.

Just as "Lycra Woman & Spandex Girl" was really starting to catch on with readers, the DuPont corporation took Comic Zone to court over what they considered bad use of the "lycra" name that they trademarked.  The lawsuit ended with Comic Zone losing, and having to destroy all back stock of the "Lycra Woman & Spandex Girl" comics.  That makes finding these first seven issues of the Aerobic Duo nearly impossible to find.  Some issues are much harder to find than others.  Issue #5, dubbed "Jurassic Dinosaur Special", is the easiest to find.

What came next were cameo appearances in Antarctic Press' "Knightmare" series.  These are okay if you like the Aerobic Duo, but that's about it.  They just don't fit in with the "Knightmare" series.  The Aerobic Duo really came into their own with Lost Cause Productions, under the title "Spandex Tights".  Still called the Aerobic Duo, the name of Lycra Woman was changed to Flex Woman.  These were all original stories.  The "Lycra Woman & Spandex Girl" series never saw reprint.  Why?  Surely the name of Lycra could have just been switched to Flex in all those past issues.  Truth is, creator Bryan Glass was not overly thrilled with the quality of the "Lycra Woman & Spandex Girl" series.  He found those stories a bit too perverse, almost dirty, and the artwork cramped and rushed.  So he decided to just restart the Aerobic Duo.

The comics DID get better and better, and everything was kept about the same except for the change in Lycra's name.  Many of the villains from the original era appeared in this new wave.  A bigger focus seemed to be put on plucky, teenaged Spandex Girl than team leader Flex Woman.  The sexual insinuations were toned down for the sake of better stories.


Publisher: Comic Zone

Lycra Woman & Spandex Girl #1
Lycra Woman & Spandex Girl #2
Lycra Woman & Spandex Girl #3
Lycra Woman & Spandex Girl #4
Lycra Woman & Spandex Girl #5
Lycra Woman & Spandex Girl #6
Lycra Woman & Spandex Girl #7

Publisher: Lost Cause Productions

Spandex Tights (Series 1) #1
Spandex Tights (Series 1) #2
Spandex Tights (Series 1) #3
Spandex Tights (Series 1) #4
Spandex Tights (Series 1) #5
Spandex Tights (Series 1) #6 [aka Spandex Tights vs. the Mighty Awful Sour Rangers #1]
Spandex Tights (Series 1) #7 [aka Spandex Tights Summer Special #1]

Publisher: Antarctic Press

Knightmare #4
Knightmare #5

Publisher: Lost Cause Productions

Spandex Tights Presents Black Spandex #1
Spandex Tights Presents Black Spandex #2
Spandex Tights (Series 2) #1
Spandex Tights (Series 2) #2
Spandex Tights (Series 2) #3
Spandex Tights (Series 2) #4
Spandex Tights (Series 2) #5
Spandex Tights (Series 2) #6


Lycra-Woman & Spandex-Girl #3 (Valentine Special #1)-  This issue, more than any other, proves that this series is not for young kids.  It is the most overtly sexual of any of the "specials".  Heavy on sexual innuendo.  The main villainess is a sexy French chef by the name of Oo-La-La.  The other enemies are two twin pre-teen girls named Passion and Ecstasy.  They have the magic power to cause instant orgasms in women and men alike.  Lots of bondage and posing.

    These comics would've benefitted greatly from color.  It's a shame that they couldn't make that happen.  I think illustrated women are far sexier when they are in color versus black and white.  I think teens and up could read this, as there is no nudity or actual sex.  But the content matter is certainly not for elementary kids.  I dig it, but it may not be for prudes.

Lycra Woman & Spandex Girl #5 (Jurassic Dinosaur Special #1)-  Our two buff, athletic lovelies battle their old nemesis, a cavewoman named Ug, who has seemingly gone legit by selling cloned dinosaurs as pets.  But in reality, missing author Robert Crichton is behind the whole evil plot, using events from this incident as material for his new book.

    This issue totally slams author Michael Crichton and his book/movie "Jurassic Park".  The name of the story is called "Jurassic Lark".  The writer was probably a bit too mean here, but the whole story is still incredibly funny.  If you're a Crichton fanatic, though, you may want to back off from reading this book.

    The supporting cast of characters is wild and hilarious.  It's just so bizarre that it's entertaining.  The only thing that holds this comic back is the fact that it's black and white.  Color would realize it a lot better, but this is an independent comic so you get what you get.

    Brilliantly (if not scathingly) written by Bryan J.L. Glass, with artwork by Sky Owens.  Sky really knows how to draw a curvaceous, overly sexy heroine.

Spandex Tights (Series 1) #6 (Spandex Tights vs. the Mighty Awful Sour Rangers #1)
The numbering of Aerobic Duo comics was once again made difficult by the fact that this issue is also known as "Mighty Awful Sour Rangers" #1.  As a matter of fact, this is how it is usually referenced.  Those who look for "Spandex Tights (Series 1)" #6 often hit a snag, when these two issues are really one and the same.

    This issue was cover-dated July, 1995.  It is EXTREMELY difficult to find as a back issue.  I'm one of the lucky ones who owns an autographed copy.  As a matter of fact, my copy is signed by creator/writer Bryan J.L. Glass, artist Doug Slack, cover artist Sky Owens, and artist/inker Bob Dix.

    The front cover, done by Sky Owens, features the "Mighty Awful Sour Rangers".  This is the best you will see them drawn.  The art in the actual Sour Rangers story is very choppy (intentionally), as it is really a "Li'l Frank" story in disguise.  Those familiar to the series know that Frank Boyd is the dweeby assistant to the Aerobic Duo.  In past issues, story of Frank as a little boy, "Li'l Frank", were made as back-up features.  Those stories always show a cruder, more childlike art style to reflect on the fact that this is set when Frank was younger.

    The feature story is a brilliant satire on the over-commercialized and rather lowly form of entertainment known as TVs "Power Rangers".  During the filming of "Mighty Awful Sour Rangers: The Movie", spoiled Cotton Candy Ranger Kimmy wants superheroines Flex Woman and Spandex Girl, the Aerobic Duo, to be the supervillains!  The entire production company of the Sour Rangers coaxes the Aerobic Duo into fighting while the cameras are rolling.

    In this story, the leader of the team is Kimmy, the Cotton Candy Ranger, a spoof on the Pink Ranger.  Denim Ranger parodies the Blue Ranger, the Poop-Head Ranger spoofs the Black Ranger (illustrated on the cover as brown), the Banana Ranger is the Yellow Ranger, Ketchup Ranger is the Red Ranger, and Pea Soup Ranger is the Green Ranger.  A funny joke is that Pea Soup Ranger used to be the "Clan Ranger", but his character "didn't go over well in certain parts of the country".  The henchmen in the original "Mighty Morphin Power Rangers" TV series were called "Puddy Men".  Here, they are called "Pugslies", and they all look like Pugsly from "The Addams Family" show.

    Just when the story climaxes, we find out that the "battle" was just play pretend between Li'l Frank and his sister.  Li'l Frank was on the side of the Rangers, since he did not like girls at this time, nor did he idolize the Aerobic Duo.  His sister, actually, is the one who was on the side of Flex Woman and Spandex Girl.  This story is just imaginary, and never really happened.

    I think this story is as funny as all get out, and it's drawn funny, but I was really hoping that it was going to be drawn more realistic like what we see on the cover.  Still, this was pretty satire-rich parody, and worth seeking out.

    The second story is "Shrinking Violence", drawn in the traditional way.  It spoofs Sid & Marty Krofft Productions, the creators of TV's "Electra-Woman & Dyna-Girl", of which the Aerobic Duo was directly inspired.  Throughout the story, you'll see various villain characters from the now classic "Electra-Woman & Dyna-Girl" series.

    The third story is a Spandex Girl solo farce called "Pie vs. Pie".  In her teenage civilian identity, Spandex Girl, really Suzie Strang, battles Sloppo, the living school lunch.  Who comes to aid Spandex Girl in the fight against the monster?  American Pie, a mock-up of Marvel's Captain America character.  The home-ec-minded superhero uses his super-strength and giant silver pie pan in his battle against the creature.

    Overall, a pretty funny issue.