At this point, practically every Marvel character has been in a movie or show. There is still one major star not named Namor who hasn’t crossed into the MCU. And his name is…Frog-Man. Or Leap Frog, if you prefer, and he is our Oddball of the Week.
Who in the Earth-616 is Frog-Man/Leap Frog? These Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles rejects are a father-son duo, one working as a villain and the other a would-be hero. The first was Leap Frog, the alter ego of former toy maker Vincent Patilio. When toys weren’t making enough money to stay in business, he did what any sensible person would do – he built a homemade frog suit and embarked on a crime spree. The suit gave Patilio enhanced strength and the ability to jump three stories high.
Leap Frog’s criminal career was fraught with mishaps. He was so bad at being a criminal that he once broke his leg trying to escape a courtroom when he jumped out a window. If he had waited, Stilt Man was moments away from a jail break.
Vincent became such a joke that his son made it his life’s work to clear the family name. Eugene Patilio modified the frog suit and became a D-list superhero, calling himself Frog-Man. Instead of clearing his father’s name, he simply added confusion to the ordeal.
If that doesn’t sound like the basis for a Disney+ action-comedy, I don’t know what does. In honor of the hapless villain/hero duo, let’s explore those key issues.
The toymaker-turned-supercriminal made his first appearance in DD #25.
Like most of Daredevil’s early adversaries, the entire concept of Leap Frog is wrought with enough cheese to constipate an elephant.
Considering how Marvel Studios has embraced the 1960s camp with both arms, Vincent Patilio is actually perfect for the MCU.
You can own as high as a 9.6 for less than $300. There are 297 copies registered in the CGC census, with the majority falling in the mid-to-high-grade range. The most recent sale was a CGC 7.0 that sold for $38 in March of this year through eBay.
Following the success of the Sinister Six in Amazing Spider-Man, the Marvel editors wanted more supervillain teams. Well, they can’t all be A-listers.
Electro wanted to take down DD, so he put together his own team. I assume the rest of the Sinister Six were busy, so he recruited Leap Frog, Stilt Man, Matador, and Gladiator.
He named this new team ‘Emissaries of Evil’. Instead of causing havoc and destruction, they were beaten by a bland guy with a baton. Thus, the Emissaries of Evil soon disbanded.
There haven’t been any high grades sold this year, but a 9.2 brought $138 last May.
Fifteen years after Leap Frog hopped into our hearts, Eugene plopped his way into Marvel history. In 1982’s Marvel Team-Up #121, with his father behind bars, Eugene rebranded the Leap Frog suit as the greatest hero of all time, Frog-Man.
In his first adventure, he attempted to aid Spider-Man and the Human Torch. Last year, the 9.8 sold anywhere from $175-$300.
LEAPING INTO THE MCU
Like all the Oddballs of the Week, both Leap Frog and Frog-Man are just silly enough to make it into a movie or at least have a streaming appearance.
Marvel has gone full-on comedy since Disney took the reins, and goofy characters like the Patilios aren’t good for much, but they are great for laughs. Sooner or later, I guarantee we’ll see one or both of them in live-action.