May. 4th, 2009

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[personal profile] erinptah
Ann Warbucks is better known as Little Orphan Annie, adopted daughter of billionaire Oliver Warbucks. (Forbes Magazine has a profile of him here.)

A lot of tropes from the original strip can be found in this 1937 storyline (posted on this fan site).

As the story begins, Oliver Warbucks is holding on to $10 billion in precious stones (that's about $144 billion in 2007 dollars), which he intends to keep. Not only that, but he explains why he won't give it to charity because it wouldn't make him happy. (Soft side alert: he will, however, give up any sum of money for Annie's safety.)

Admittedly, Warbucks does intend to use the wealth to finance inventions that will benefit humanity; he sees this, perhaps rightly, as unselfish service in its own right. Not that his investment in technology doesn't directly benefit himself and Annie, of course.

As the tale progresses, they end up hiding out in a camouflaged house with anti-aircraft guns on the roof, keeping contact with friends around the world via television. Even if you accept that they could have had an early prototype, the global filming abilities that rival modern military satellites are a bit of a stretch.

But Annie's world isn't all tech. When old friend Mr. Am drops by, Warbucks explains that he's really over 20,000 years old, and his memories seem to extend back millennia. On being told he's actually immortal, Annie's mind boggles. (Skeevy race issues ahead: his (black) attendants are "his most willing slaves".)

Am, like Warbucks, has been an arms dealer, though he sold to both sides. On the tech side, Am hangs out in a solar powered submarine; on the magic side, when Warbucks is fatally shot, Am pulls a resurrection.

Futuristic tech, fantasy elements, fanatical characters, and a possible appearance by God. You couldn't have made a better fit for the Shineverse if you designed it that way.

Ann makes her debut in the Let There Be Guns storyline. Her appearance was first foreshadowed in these sketches.


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