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Real Name: Carl Pfotts

Identity/Class: Human, citizen of the United States

Occupation: Vagrant

Group Membership: None

Affiliations: Hulk (Bruce Banner)

Enemies: Railroad police

Known Relatives: None

Aliases: None

Base of Operations: Jeffrey Hook's Light, New York City, New York,
                                   Mobile throughout the United States  

First Appearance: Incredible Hulk I#255 (January, 1981)

Powers/Abilities: Carl Pfotts has no known superhuman abilities. A heavy drinker, Pfotts is used to not seeing the world too clearly and isn't easily spooked by things that most people would find strange or alarming.

Height: Unrevealed (approximately 5'9")
Weight: Unrevealed (approximately 150 lbs.)
Eyes: Brown
Hair: Brown



(Incredible Hulk I#255 (fb) - BTS) - As a child, Pfotts read a book about Jeffrey Hook's Light, a small Manhattan lighthouse located underneath the George Washington Bridge. He never forgot the little red lighthouse (see comments).

(Incredible Hulk I#255 (fb) - BTS) - Due to unrevealed circumstances, Pfotts became an alcoholic vagrant traveling the country by riding the rails. His illegal train trips eventually took him to New York City where he spotted the lighthouse he remembered from his childhood. Pfotts decided to jump off the train and make the lighthouse his home whenever his travels brought him to the city.

(Incredible Hulk I#255) - After drinking himself into a near stupor on Thunderbird wine, Pfotts was lying down next to the lighthouse when the Hulk showed up (he was trying to hide from the Manhattan police). Hulk was surprised Pfotts treated him like a friend and didn't seem scared of him. The bum told the green goliath that "the hooch he was having made everybody seem green". Pfotts then offered Hulk a place to sleep, walking towards the lighthouse only to find the door had been welded shut. Carl tried to worm through the window, but the Hulk casually yanked the entire door off its hinges, allowing them to go upstairs. Once there, Carl began to fantasize about having some decent grub like filet mignon, duck a l'orange, lobster tails and butterbeans he drifted off to sleep.

(Incredible Hulk I#255 - BTS) - Over the course of the night, Hulk back into Bruce Banner.

(Incredible Hulk I#255) - Waking up with a tremendous hangover, Pfotts was surprised to find his guest had changed considerably. He still took it all in stride, explaining to the confused Bruce Banner what had happened. Banner then was shocked to find Hulk had brought them to New York City. He rushed out to the trainyard to catch the next ride out of town.

Comments: Created by Bill Mantlo & Sal Buscema.

It seems obvious that this character was named after then neophyte Marvel editor Carl Potts, though all similarities end there. 

Sal Buscema went out of his way to draw Pfotts as the stereotypical early 20th century hobo. From the dirty trench coat with booze bottle right down to the cheap shoes with a hole in the sole... There's no denying Ol' Carl was a vagrant. But judging from his dialogue, he must have come from a semi-sophisticated background: if your choice 'grub' is lobster tails, filet mignon and orange duck, chances are you weren't born dirt poor.

The book Pfotts read as a kid just might be The Little Red Lighthouse and the Great Gray Bridge, a children's story by Hildegarde Swift (1890 - 1977), published in 1942 that emphasized the notion that all things are important, irregardless of their size.

Profile by Norvo.

 Carl Pfotts should not be confused with: 

images: (without ads)
Incredible Hulk I#255, p5, pan1 (main image)
Incredible Hulk I#255, p7, pan2 (close up)
Incredible Hulk I#255, p5, pan5 (entering the lighthouse)
Incredible Hulk I#255, p7, pan5 (meets Bruce Banner)

Incredible Hulk I#255 (January, 1981) - Bill Mantlo (writer), Sal Buscema (pencils & inks), Al Milgrom & Jim Shooter (editors)

First Posted: 10/19/2021
Last updated: 10/19/2021

Any Additions/Corrections? please let me know.

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