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Up from (Super) Obscurity

Well, another week has come and gone, and it's put me in the mind of two weeks ago when I put the spotlight on one of the characters from Battle Blaze. That goofy-looking orc/ogre-y fellow reminded me of someone else, from another fighting game, however.
A very special fighting game.
One that's infamous, really...
Oh, what the hell, you can already see the image below anyway, so no need to be coy. Today we're going to look at one of the early goofy enemies from...
SHAQ FU
I know what you must be asking yourself...
...which supporting character can POSSIBLY stand next to the mighty self-promoting rebounding machine that was EARLY-'90s SHAQUILLE O'NEAL?
Well, let me tell you -- it's none other than:
Mark Davis, THE FISHING MASTER!
Wait, no -- that's not right. I'm just trying to pad out the article avoid thinking about Shaq and his mad "Fu" skills. In fact, Shaq's nemesis-du-jour can be found here, in this realm of "the 2nd world":
But what kind of creature would live at "Gargoyles' Peak"?
In fact, it's none other than Mephis The Friendly Gargoyle!
In case you missed the amazing plot movie that introduces Shaq Fu, Shaq has gone to the 2nd world to rescue a little boy, Nezu, who somehow also went to the second world.
This boy (Nezu) is somewhere in the 2nd world, so Shaq greets every inhabitant of this strange and He-Man-like plane of existence with immediate threats of violence.
In fact, Shaq is so eager to find the missing boy, Nezu, that he greets Mephis the Gargoyle with what is either an overly-punctuated threat, or an attempt to begin an S&M relationship with the green demon:
Mephis, perhaps equally confused by the subtexts of Mr. O'Neal's statement, continues the banter's homoerotic undertones by mentioning that he will whisper into Shaq's ear after "slapping him silly."
...and the fight is on!
Let's see; Shaq is a freakishly tall muscular dude...while Mephis the Gargoyle is a Skeletor knockoff in rags. You'd think that, in unarmed combat, the advantage might be with Mr. O'Neal.
However, in addition to Mephis's attractive cliff-top lair -- complete with some ADORABLE umber hulk butlers, cluttering up the background scenery and occasionally doing cute "RARR!" animations:
Mephis is also a Master of the Dark Arts! And if the early '90s video games taught us anything, it's that the only reason one would harness the eldritch powers of the occult is to gain unfair advantages in fist-fights!
Here we see the projectile-attack technique I like to call the "Scoobydouken"
But Shaq battles back!
Our hero is unwilling to let this beast of living stone and his giant nine-foot-tall armor-plated pals prevent him from finding out about the boy (who is, you may recall, named "Nezu"). So Shaq strikes back with his most powerful weapon:
A boot to the head!
Shaq's punches and quick-kicks are pretty useful, his two specials are hard to pull off and not really worth it, and the only "block" option you have available involves ducking and pressing the Super Nintendo controller's "L" wing-button...but despite all that, Shaq's jumping or standing long-legged kick is a pretty effective way to deliver an over-sized, charity-basket-ball-game-playin' sneaker upside the enemy's heads, and Mephis is not immune.
Before too long I had Mephis cornered in his own Peak, desperately trying to summon some more otherworldly ghost beams or lightning bolts to pull off a win...
But then I noticed something: you see those pictures at the top left and right of the screen, by each character's energy bars? Well, they change during the fight; from a "Normal" face, to a "YEAH!" face to an "OH NO" face, depending on the circumstances. And look how sad Mephis looks!
Oh, he's just like some poor puppy! Admittedly, it'd be a pretty weird puppy, being all green and having a skull-face and all; maybe a Martian puppy...anyway, I felt sorry for the bedraggled goober. Who is Shaq, to charge in to someone's home and beat them up in front of their monstrous butlers?
So instead I took a dive and let Mephis have the win. Of course, after seeing his victory pose I immediately regretted it, as he went all "flasher" on us:
Then, he insults my intelligence by claiming to have defeated fighters TWICE as tall as Shaq:
I know for a fact that this cartridge could not fit the sprites for a 14-foot-tall monster in its graphics memory, so clearly Mephis was lying!
But this still leaves one question unanswered...
Why did they name the gargoyle after Memphis, Tennessee?!
Well, I don't think any of us can fathom the answer to that potent ponderable. So, until next week -- happy Shaq Fu-ing, and watch out for the...
— carlmarksguy, 2012-10-05
1
"Walkin' in Mephis...walkin' with my feet ten feet off of Bele..." It's like they just took out a letter and decided that was Egyptian enough. Even though there actually was an ancient Egyptian city called Memphis, so I don't know why they bothered.
2
Hopefully the Egyptian fighting game characters "Nashille", "Atlant", and "Dllas" are on their way!
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