Many X-MEN:TAS characters were set in stone. No fan wants to see a blond, willowy Wolverine. Often the creation of guest characters allowed our artists more room to personalize their designs. Late in the series run, in episode #45 (“Love in Vain” — thanks for the correction, Nathan), Larry Houston had the fun challenge of coming up with a look for a race of threatening aliens (“The Colony”) and their ferocious Queen. For some reason, Hela, the Asgardian Goddess of Death from the Thor comics stuck in Larry’s mind as a starting point. First drawn in the 1960s by the immortal Jack Kirby (below), Hela had recently been modernized by artist Bruce Timm (next below). Larry gave the two images of Hela to artists Mark Lewis and Frank Brunner as inspiration for our rapacious alien “Colony Queen.” You can see the final result — original, yet a respectful nod to the early work that had inspired Larry since his childhood.