RICARDO DEL WOLVERINE

Real Name: Ricardo Del Wolverine

Identity/Class: Human, Republic of Santa Mafiosa citizen

Occupation: Soccer player (see comments)

Group Membership: Santa Mafiosa national soccer team

Affiliations: Ted Drinkingproblem, Sleezy-Cola, unidentified priest

Enemies: Rival soccer teams, referees

Known Relatives: Unidentified mother, unidentified wife, four unidentified sons, two unidentified daughters

Aliases: None

Base of Operations: Republic of Santa Mafiosa

First Appearance: Not the World Cup: The Official Souvenir Brochure (1982)

Powers/Abilities: Ricardo is a skilled football player, expert at dribbling and shooting. He is incredibly fast while on the field, capable at moving with such speed and skill that he can spell out entire phrases by scorching them into the pitch. He is also able to either conceal large weapons about his person despite only wearing shorts and a t-shirt, or to summon them out of thin air at will. Ricardo is also an over-the-top yet bizarrely convincing actor and liar.

Height: Unrevealed
Weight: Unrevealed
Eyes: Unrevealed
Hair: Unrevealed but dark (black or brown)

History:
(
Not the World Cup (fb) - BTS) - Ricardo Del Wolverine was the star player of the Republic of Santa Mafiosa national soccer team, and an expert at committing vicious fouls to win the game. He signed personal contracts prior to matches to find ways to advertise products during the going through the legitimate channels for product placement, and arranged cash bonuses for goal scoring. Believing in proper preparation, prior to matches he takes the family of the rival team's goalkeeper hostage, photographing one of his associates holding them at gunpoint, and has his family and a priest on standby. While preferring to foul opponents by hitting them with a large block of wood (a 2-by-4), he also secreted a nine-inch stiletto in his socks in case he accidentally attacked a player with a steel plate in their skull, against whom the club would be ineffective.

(Not the World Cup (fb) ) - Once the match began, Ricardo looked for a player to commit a vicious foul against. Not being a beginner at this, he eschewed going for the tough, capable player who had possession of the ball, but instead picked the weakest of his opponents. Waiting until his target's back was turned and the referee was focused on the players competing for the ball, Ricardo smashed the unlucky player over the back of the head. Realizing that he had only inflicted a mortal wound, Ricardo quickly distracted the referee's attention away from his victim by claiming to have spotted Erica Roe in the crowd (see comments). Excitedly the referee turned round and began scanning the crowd, thus missing Ricardo pulling out a heavy-duty industrial rock-drill to use on the downed player. As the referee complained that he still couldn't see Erica, Ricardo finished off his target with a burst from a light-weight machine gun, while apologizing and claiming he must have actually spotted two bald men on pogo sticks. With Ricardo acting innocently, holding the still-smoking machine-gun behind his back while whistling, the referee finally turned his attention to the bullet-ridden corpse, eyeing it suspiciously. Suspecting the referee might see through his little deception, Ricardo went for a sympathy play in the hope this might make the referee forget his little transgression. Feeling that overdoing it might arouse suspicions, Ricardo crashed to the ground holding one of his legs while screaming, crying and whimpering in agony, a prearranged signal that prompted his mother, wife and children to invade the pitch and gather around him weeping and cradling him as he played dead, while a priest administered the last rites. This left the referee in tears too, meaning Ricardo did not have to turn to his last resort and offer the ref a 10 bribe.

   Having successfully gotten away with his foul, Ricardo began to focus on what football was really about: making money. Moving with lightning speed, he took possession of the ball and dribbled it left and right and up and down, moving so fast he left a trail of scorched turf behind him, spelling out in large letters "Drink Sleezy-Cola." Needing to actually score a goal to get his bonus, Ricardo finally turned his attention to the goals, thundering down the pitch with the ball, avoiding going for an easy shot and instead waiting until he was only three feet away so he could show the goalie a Polaroid of his family being held at gunpoint, using the threat against them to blackmail the goalie into stepping aside, leaving it easy for Ricardo to score.

(Not the World Cup (fb) - BTS) - With the match over, Ricardo finally got to the moment he had been waiting for: kissing everybody on his team.

(Not the World Cup) - Ricardo appeared as a guest of presenter Ted Drinkingproblem on the TV show Star Soccer, and outlined his advice to fans on how to foul opponents. The tale he recounted apparently stirred up his passions anew, and as he talked about kissing his team mates, he explained that this was the most difficult bit of all, taking hold of Ted's hand and asking if he could demonstrate. Trying to be polite, Ted tentatively agreed, and Ricardo explained that kissing was a fine art in itself and you should not rush into it, instead buying your team mate a box of chocolates and take them to the movies, before starting to kiss up the length of their arms. As he said this, he demonstrated, planting kisses along the length of the increasingly nervous Ted's arm, then moved to embrace the now-panicked presenter and started nibbling his ear-lobe while singing a Barry Manilow love song. As Ted begged him to stop, a staff member called for the credits to roll while someone else shouted to quickly bring the dart gun. As the camera operator and other studio staff watched in horror, the passion-driven Ricardo threw the presenter to the studio floor and began ripping his clothes off, prompting a desperate plea from a staff member for someone to fetch the shark nets.

Comments: Created by Alan Moore and Barrie Mitchell.

   "Not the World Cup" was a three page comic strip produced by Marvel UK as part of a 1982 World Cup souvenir brochure, a humorous tale penned by Alan Moore around the same time that he started writing Captain Britain, and drawn by Barrie Mitchell, a highly experienced U.K. artist little known to U.S. audiences but an excellent choice for this strip as he had been drawing football-related strips for over a decade.

   In case anyone is confused, the game Ricardo plays is what Americans would call soccer, but most of the rest of the world considers football and soccer synonyms. Since this was a British strip in a British title written by a British writer, I'm using football and soccer interchangeably in this profile.

   The strip parodies the worst examples of bad playing seen on the football pitch, with massively exaggerated examples of players fouling the other team, incompetent referees who fail to spot this blatant bad behavior, dodgy corporate product placements, etc.

   Explaining Ricardo's claiming to have spotted Erica Roe in the crowd as a way of diverting the referee's attention: Erica Roe was a large-breasted woman who (in)famously streaked across a football pitch during a match, making headlines and becoming instantly, if fleetingly, famous in the U.K. Hence why the referee excitedly turned to try and spot her, and his unusual explanation of what he had actually (supposedly) seen.

    This profile was completed 12/23/2020, but its publication was delayed as it was intended for the Appendix 20th anniversary 's celebratory event.

Profile by Loki.

CLARIFICATIONS:
Ricardo Del Wolverine has no known connections to:


Ted Drinkingproblem

    Ted Drinkingproblem was the presenter of Star Soccer, a TV show where top professional footballers from around the world would appear as guests and give young hopeful fans their "star soccer tips." On his latest show he interviewed Ricardo Del Wolverine of Santa Mafiosa, and listened with interest as Mafiosa explained his top tips for committing vicious fouls. As Ricardo finished recounting his example, he explained that after winning the match, he could finally kiss everybody on their team, but added that this could be the most difficult bit of all if done properly. Gripping the slightly worried Ted's wrist, Ricardo asked if the presenter minded if he demonstrated. Trying to be a gracious host, Ted nervously told Ricardo he could go ahead, but tried to pull back without making it too obvious as Ricardo began planting kisses along the length of his arm. Ted's nervous laugh turned into outright protest as Ricardo moved in to trap him in an embrace and began nibbling Ted's ear, then cries of terror as Ricardo threw him to the floor and started ripping his clothes off.

Comments: Ted's surname is presumably parodying the fact that some prominent football commentators in the 1970s/80s U.K. didn't seem averse to being visibly drunk while presenting their shows.

--Not the World Cup: The Official Souvenir Brochure (1982)


Referee

    The referee at Ricardo's match was easily distracted by the prospect of seeing a large-chested naked woman, and later fell for Ricardo playing dead while his family wept around him, becoming so overcome with grief at the sight that he forgot all about the player Ricardo had murdered behind his back.

--Not the World Cup: The Official Souvenir Brochure (1982)


Ricardo's mother, wife, children and priest

    Ricardo's family and his priest were primed to help Ricardo when he used his sympathy ploy to distract the referee from his having murdered another player. Upon seeing Ricardo faking injury, they invaded the pitch and surrounded him weeping, while the priest administered last rites.

--Not the World Cup: The Official Souvenir Brochure (1982)


images: (without ads)
Not the World Cup: The Official Souvenir Brochure, p22 (2 of story), pan6 (main image)
Not the World Cup: The Official Souvenir Brochure, p21 (1 of story), pan2 (headshot)
Not the World Cup: The Official Souvenir Brochure, p21 (1 of story), pan1 (Ted Drinkingproblem)
Not the World Cup: The Official Souvenir Brochure, p21 (1 of story), pan7 (referee)
Not the World Cup: The Official Souvenir Brochure, p22 (2 of story), pan4 (Ricardo's mother, children, wife and priest)


Appearances:
Not the World Cup: The Official Souvenir Brochure (1982) - Alan Moore (writer), Barrie Mitchell (art), Tim Hampson (editor)


First Posted: 09/19/2021
Last updated:
09/18/2021

Any Additions/Corrections? please let me know.

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