METROPOLIS — Captain Cold, the supervillain known worldwide for his trademark parka and freeze gun, is no longer a member of the Legion of Doom.
The remaining 12 members of the Legion, an intergalactic terrorist group dedicated to the conquest of the universe, voted unanimously to expel Cold during an emergency meeting held late last night in a mysterious, murky swamp just outside Metropolis.
This stunning decision comes mere days after The Daily Planet published a damning report, alleging that Cold had been sexually harassing his colleagues and enemies for years with inappropriate comments and gestures.
“Let me be very clear,” said criminal mastermind Lex Luthor, the Legion’s founder and leader, in a statement to the press. “The Legion of Doom is an organization dedicated to pure evil. But there is some behavior even we will not tolerate. And, clearly, Captain Cold has crossed that line.”
For nearly 40 years, Cold has been a familiar member of the Legion of Doom, assisting the group in its many, many unsuccessful clashes with the peacekeeping body known as the Super Friends.
While the public knew Cold for wielding a gun capable of shooting freeze rays, those within the superhero and supervillain communities knew him for his “grabby” hands and lewd remarks.
“Oh, Hera, he was the worst,” remembers Wonder Woman, a long-time Super Friend who faced Captain Cold many times in battle. “Whenever we were fighting the Legion, I’d beg not to be paired up with Captain Cold. I was like, I’ll fight Solomon Grundy, Scarecrow, whatever. Just not Cold. He was always finding a way to ‘accidentally’ brush up against my thighs. Not cool, if you’ll pardon the expression.”
Captain Cold’s teammates tell similar, unflattering stories.
“His favorite trick,” recalls cat-suited villainess Cheetah, “was to ice up the break room in the [Legion of Doom headquarters] Hall of Doom, so that my nipples would poke through my costume when I went in there. Then he’d snicker and say, ‘Cold enough for ya?’ It was so humiliating. Also, he was constantly freezing his own urine in our shared refrigerator. I’m 99% sure that was a sex thing. Because he’d freeze it into penis shapes.”
Legion of Doom member Giganta’s memories are just as horrifying.
“Obviously, growing to an enormous size is my whole thing,” reports the felonious giantess. “And I wear a skirt. Everyone in the Legion knows that. So whenever I’d do my [transformation] thing, Cold would always be there, looking up and getting an eyeful. A couple times, I’m pretty sure he had a camera.”
Though he typically targeted women, Cold’s demeaning, often aggressive behavior was occasionally aimed at males as well.
“It was the annual Legion of Doom Christmas mixer,” testifies Sinestro. “We had just created convincing robot doubles of Robin and Apache Chief, so obviously spirits were high. Anyway, Black Manta, Riddler, and I were talking, and suddenly, Cold just walks up to us and puts his hand directly over my crotch. Didn’t say a word. Just held it there for a whole minute, staring right into my eyes the entire time. Then he just walked away.”
The question now arises: How was this outrageous behavior allowed to continue for so many years?
“I, like so many others, simply looked the other way,” confesses Luthor in a telephone interview. “As long as Captain Cold was able to encase Black Lightning in a solid cube of ice during a fight, I was willing to forgive his grossly disrespectful conduct. That was wrong. To the Legion of Doom and the Super Friends, I sincerely apologize.”
It was initially reported that at least one member of the Legion of Doom had spoken in Captain Cold’s defense, referring to him as “respectful” and “completely professional.” These comments, however, were made by Bizarro, the backwards Superman clone who deliberately says the opposite of what he means.
For his part, Captain Cold denies the charges made in the Planet story, calling them “part of a smear campaign masterminded by the Super Friends to discredit me.”
At a brief press conference, Cold told reporters he would be using his newfound free time to “work on” himself.
“I’ve been thinking,” explained Cold, “that maybe I need something besides the freeze gun to set me apart. How about juggling? Are there any juggling supervillains?”
As for who would be replacing Captain Cold in the Legion of Doom, the organization is accepting resumes from villains across the DC universe. An early front-runner, sources say, is Killer Frost.
“She has ice powers, too,” muses Luthor. “Plus she’s a woman, so, you know. Bonus.”
Meanwhile, there are ugly rumors currently swirling around another Legionnaire, the giggling, gadget-making jester known as Toyman. Of particular concern is Toyman’s behavior while judging the Miss Teen USA pageant in 1997.
“No comment on that,” says a clearly exasperated Luthor. “One controversy at a time, please.”