Real Name: Linda Brown
Identity/Class: Possible human mutate? (see comments)
Group Membership: None
Affiliations: Her Aunt May & Uncle Ben (see comments)
Known Relatives: Her Aunt May & Uncle Ben
Base of Operations: Her Aunt May &
Uncle Ben's seaside home;
formerly her undersea home
First Appearance: Strange Tales I#97/3 (June, 1962)
Powers/Abilities: Linda Brown was a mermaid; having a "fish-tail" rather than legs, she was confined to a wheelchair while out of water. She was amphibious and could breathe conventionally while on the surface, and apparently had gills to extract oxygen while underwater.
(Strange Tales I#97 (fb)-BTS) - Under unknown circumstances, Linda Brown left her home and went to live at the seaside home of her Aunt May and Uncle Ben.
(Strange Tales I#97) - Linda loved living by the seashore, spending her days sitting out on the beach, collecting seashells. One night (as if summoned in her sleep) Linda arose from her bed, climbed into her wheelchair, and rolled down to the beach.
The next morning, as they followed Linda's wheelchair tracks in the sand down to the sea, May and Ben were saddened to see that Linda had left them, but they always knew that some day the young mermaid would have to return to her home beneath the waves.
Comments: Created by Stan Lee and Steve Ditko.
Since she had a human name and human
relatives, that implies to me that Linda Brown was from human ancestry,
so it seems possible that she could have been mutated into her mermaid
Or she was just adopted by them and given that name - Madison Carter
Linda's story was basically a retelling of an earlier story ("The World That Was Lost!" from Strange Tales I#69) wherein a bald wheelchair-bound Linus Vermeer (a dead ringer for Charles Xavier) charters a boat to take him to the lost continent of Atlantis; when they arrive, Vermeer leaps out of his wheelchair and into the sea, revealing himself to be a merman. Other stories featured mermaid Alathea ("I Love a Mermaid!" from Tales to Astonish I#4) and a whole civilization of mer-people ("What Lurks Beneath?" from Astonishing #46).
Perhaps there was once a mad scientist-type (similar to Dr. Hydro and Captain Omen) who thought that mankind's only hope for survival was to return to the sea, so he recruited some like-minded followers and mutated them into sea-dwelling mer-people (hmm...maybe there's a story there, somewhere).
And despite the fact that they have
the same first names and a slight physical resemblance, Linda Brown's
"Aunt May" and "Uncle Ben" are probably NOT the same people as Peter
Parker's aunt and uncle.
(Unless MAYBE Linda is really Peter's SECRET COUSIN!)
Yeah, right...and the next thing you'll try to tell me is that Peter's really a CLONE!
Anyway, Ben and May Parker would first appear in Amazing Fantasy I#15, two months AFTER this story was originally published.
And a big THANK YOU to Dennis Giansante for scanning this story for me!
DC had a very similar character in Superman I#129 in May 1959: Lori Lemaris.
Here are some other mermaid that could be members of Linda Brown, Linus Vermeer & Alathea's race:
Profile by John Kaminski
Linda Brown has no known connections to
Aunt May & Uncle Ben
May and Ben were a married couple that lived in a home by the seashore. They were happy that their niece Linda Brown came to visit them, but they always knew that one day she would have to leave them to return home.
--Strange Tales I#97/3
Strange Tales I#97, p18, pan6 (main image)
p17, pan5 (head shot)
p18, pan2 (Aunt May & Uncle Ben head shots)
p15, pan2 (Aunt May, Uncle Ben and Linda)
Any Additions/Corrections? please let me know.
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