LA HACIENDA

Classification: Village

Creator: The "ogres"

User/Possessors: The Fathers/ogres, Conquistadors, Alejandro, Capitan, Diego, Laura, Lorena, and others who have stumbled across it over the centuries;
also encountered by the Man-Thing, the She-Hulk (Jennifer Walters), Professor Slaughter, and F.A.Schist.

Location: Deep within the Man-Thing's swamp, in Citrusville, Florida

First Appearance: Man-Thing I#7 (July, 1974)

Nature: La Hacienda is the home to a village of people who live extended lives as a result of the Fountain of Eternal Youth. The Fountain is both the source of immortality and the subject of a near religious reverence amongst the residents.

History: Sometime in the 16th Century, a group of Spanish explorers found the legendary Fountain of Eternal Youth in the swamplands of what would become Citrusville, Florida. Overcome by the excitement of the find, the explorers drank of the waters, and a result were transformed into hideous, purple "ogres". Learning from this, the "ogres" trained others to bathe in the waters, thus gaining the benefits of immortality, without being transformed as they had. The "ogres" and those who bathed in the waters built a small village around the rainbow colored Fountain.

Over the following centuries, people occasionally encountered and were inducted into the village that they had named la Hacienda (literally, "the Farm"--thanks Cisco!).

(Man-Thing I#7) - When the Man-Thing wandered too closely to la Hacienda, the Capitan sent out a squad of Conquistadors to capture it and bring it to the village. Alejandro, Diego, and two others netted the swamp creature and began to drag him back to the village. However, the net eventually pulled through the bog beast, and he attacked the startled Conquistadors. One of them knew fear and burned at the touch of the Man-Thing, but the others fled back to the village. However, the stress and exertion exhausted the life-preserving energies within them and they ages rapidly and died before they could return to the Fountain. The Man-Thing had followed them and wandered into the village. The Capitan attempted to slay him with bullets, which of course failed. The Man-Thing forced its way into the village, despite the efforts of the other Conquistadors, until one of the villagers, Lorena, threw an urn full of the Fountain's waters on it. In terrible pain, the Man-Thing fled, the hand exposed to the waters returning to human form.

(Man-Thing I#8) - Recovering from its agony, the Man-Thing's curiosity brought it back to la Hacienda--where it was followed by FA Schist and Professor Slaughter, seeking to reap great wealth by discovering the legendary Fountain. Lorena succeeded in calming the Man-Thing, and he was brought to the heart of the village, where the waters were infused into the swamp creature's substance, slowly returning it to human form. The process was interrupted by Schist and Slaughter, and Slaughter fell to his seeming death while trying to avoid the Man-Thing. Schist attempted to bargain with the Fathers (hidden in the shadows) for financial rights to the waters. Disgusted, the Fathers gave Schist a flask of the waters "as a show of good faith." Schist, of course, drank the water and was also transformed into an ogre. Enraged, Schist attempted to kill Lorena (the others would be next). The Man-Thing attempted to stop Schist, but its mostly human form was dramatically decreased in power, and Schist battered the weakened creature. However, Schist unwittingly shattered the vat containing the swampy material siphoned off of the Man-Thing, returning its power. The restored Man-Thing grabbed the mortified Schist, who burst into flames and quickly burned to ashes.
The Fathers decided against trying to transform the Man-Thing again, as they no longer wanted any more outsiders to join them. The Man-Thing wandered back into its swamp.

(Savage She-Hulk#7) - After an uncharacteristic run of great luck, Richard Rory came into a vast sum of money. He purchased a portion of the Citrusville swamp, intending to turn it into a preserve. Jen Walters, who had recently befriended Rory, went with him to Florida to check out the property. After turning into the She-Hulk to fight off a gator attack, she was gassed by the two Fathers and brought back to la Hacienda, where they bathed her in the calming waters.

(Savage She-Hulk#8) - The waters turned the She-Hulk back to Jen, who joined the community of la Hacienda. However, after one of the villagers (Laura) was killed by an alligator, Jen led the other villagers to build a fence to keep out the gators. The Fathers were furious at Jen for generating stress and worry in the villagers and sentenced Jen to death for the "Crime of Doing." However, she managed to convince both the villagers and the Fathers that life without work, interests, and self-improvement is no life at all, and so she was acquitted. The people of la Hacienda were so moved by her speech that they shattered the Fountain, sacrificing their eternal youth in exchange for actually living life.

Comments: Created by Steve Gerber and Mike Ploog.

Clarifications:
The Fountain of Eternal Youth, aka the Fountain of Youth and the Rainbow Fountain, within la Hacienda, should be distinguished from:

The Ogres, aka the Fathers and the Wise Ones, have no known connections to:

The Conquistadors have no known connection to:


Fountain of Eternal Youth

Also known as the Fountain of Youth and the Rainbow Fountain, its origins are unknown. As the waters are of subterranean origin, creation by the Deviants or another hidden race seems likely, but this is only speculative.

The waters, when bathed in, generate a calm, emotionally numb state which dramatically decreases the aging process, partially by the virtual elimination of stress. If the waters are imbibed, the effect is much more drastic-- one is transformed into a purple-skinned humanoid, sometimes referred to as an ogre. Ogres apparently also receive an extended lifespan, and in addition, they apparently retain the capacity for emotion. Emotion, or any similar stress, within one who has bathed in the waters, virtually eliminates its life-giving properties. The waters also have other properties, such as the ability to restore humanity in the Man-Thing. The process was interrupted, so it is not clear whether the effects would have been complete or permanent.

--Man-Thing I#7 (8, Savage She-Hulk#8

 

 


Fathers

 

Also known as Ogres, Purple Ogres, and the Wise Ones, these are the original founders of la Hacienda, who unwittingly drank the waters, rather than bathing in them. They established the village, and trained the villagers to avoid all emotion, conflict, or similar stress. On occasion, they have attempted to help natives of the outside world attain the peace they saw as bliss.

After their encounter with Jen Walters, they allowed the Fountain to be destroyed, so that the villagers could be allowed to regain their lives and pursuits of happiness. Their subsequent fate is unrevealed.

--Man-Thing I#7 - BTS, 8 (Savage She-Hulk#7, 8

 

 

 


Capitan

He was the leader of the Conquistadors, and it was he who sent them to capture and/or drive off the Man-Thing. After two failures, he reported to the Fathers, who instructed him to bring the Man-Thing to them, so they could try to cure him. He didn't seem to be as affected by the emotion-draining properties of the waters.

 

 

 

 

 

 


Conquistadors

 

These are actual Spanish Conquistadors, who survived to the modern era via the effects of the Fountain. Four of them were sent out to capture the Man-Thing and perished either in the conflict, or from the stress of doing. At least three other Conquistadors have been seen, all of whom tried and failed to drive the Man-Thing from the village when he first entered la Hacienda. Alejandro and Diego were among the first four who died.

(Marvel Zombies 3#1) - One of the Conquistadors became a member of Florida's Intitiative team the Command (Aquarian, Jennifer Kale, Siege). During a mission in the swamps near the Nexus of Realities he was ripped apart by people, who had been turned into zombies by a virus from Reality-2149.

(Avengers: The Initiative#19 - BTS) - Another Conquistador joined the team only to be exposed as a Skrull and killed.

--Man-Thing I#7 (8, Marvel Zombies 3#1, Avengers: The Initiative#19 - BTS

 

 

 

 


Lorena

 

One of the villagers, it was she who drove out the Man-Thing by hurling the waters at him. She also brought him back into the village so the Fathers could try to restore his humanity. She was attacked by the transformed Schist, but saved by the Man-Thing.

--Man-Thing I#7 (8

 

 


Appearances:
Man-Thing I#7-8 (July-August, 1974) - Steve Gerber (writer), Mike Ploog (artist), Roy Thomas (editor)
Savage She-Hulk#7-8 (August-September, 1980) - David Anthony Kraft (writer), Mike Vosburg (pencils), Chic Stone (inks), Mary Jo Duffy & Al Milgrom (#8) (editor)
Marvel Zombies 3#1 (December, 2008) - Fred Van Lente (writer), Kev Walker (artist), Bill Rosemann (editor)
Avengers: The Initiative#19 (January, 2009) - Dan Slott, Christos Gage (writers), Harvey Talibao, Bong Dazo (pencilers/inkers), Tom Brevoort (editor)


Last updated: 08/24/13

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