The Life Model Decoy (henceforth LMD) isn’t a bad concept. It makes perfect sense for a super-spy organization to want to protect its most valuable assets, and the type of technology needed to create android duplicates of people has been well-established in the Marvel Universe for decades.
But seriously, Marvel, it’s time we had a little chat about how out of control this LMD business has become.
We can start with Nick Fury, or as he can probably now be called, the man of 1000 LMDs. Again, it’s logical for Fury to have some body doubles, because it wouldn’t be prudent for S.H.I.E.L.D. to have a leader who was easy for one of its many enemies to assassinate.
Orignal Sin has taken that idea to its logical extreme and pushed logic to the breaking point in the process. Previous writers have already had some fun with the whole “Fury is an LMD” thing that has been used to explain away his apparent death on multiple occasions:
But the current Marvel event has raised the possibility that Fury might have been a duplicate every time we’ve seen him over the years. Or at least most of the times, since the real Nick has been busy protecting the world in secret. Also, he’s got a veritable army of look-alike androids at his disposal.
Writers have also had to rely on constant one-upsmanship to explain why people can’t tell real people from their decoys:
“This one is so convincing it even fools Wolverine’s sense of smell!”
“I know I’m Iron Man, and I helped build some of these, but there’s tech in here even I’ve never seen!”
Then there was this business in Original Sins #5, which came out this week. Thus, I can’t proceed without throwing in a very large …
This book contains what is likely the LMD coup de grace, in the sense that it even tops what has been done with Fury. I can’t imagine how another writer would top this revelation, and I’m not sure I’d want to see it.
Dum Dum Dugan has been an LMD the whole time. Fury’s real BFF died in the 60s, and every time we’ve seen him since, he’s been an android.
Not only is this an idea that is kind of shock for shock’s sake, but as Rich Johnston so astutely points out at Bleeding Cool, it makes it almost impossible for anyone else to bring Dugan back.
Marvel, I’m almost begging you now. Please stop it. Put a moratorium on LMD use for a year or something. If you really are doing a reboot next year, don’t let anyone invent an LMD for at least 18 months.
Like I said, it wasn’t a bad idea, just one that’s been beaten to death — and not the kind of death that can be explained away by an android.