If you watched the reveal special for the “Cosmic Legions – Hvalkatar: Book Two, Gravenight” wave, you saw us unveil brand new characters that are part of the ongoing Comic Legions storyline. This particular wave focuses on a number of unlucky prisoners at the Hvalkatar prison complex – prisoners who find themselves fighting in the dreaded arena of Cell Block 5 commonly called “The Grave.”
The Grave’s gladiatorial fights are, of course, not mentioned in any of the official reports from this complex, but those brutal contests are an important part of the prison’s operations. Beyond providing entertainment for Hvalkatar’s management, and a convenient way to dispose of certain inmates whose usefulness may have been exhausted, the fights in The Grave also allow Highwarden Slogg and his underlings the chance to host powerful and influential individuals for an evening of bloody sport. Many a deal has been brokered over the battles in The Grave, and many favors have been extracted in forgiveness of a debt accrued betting on those fights.
Understanding the importance of these contests, it is no surprise to discover that the fight promoters of Hvalkatar are not satisfied with the potential combatants housed within the walls of that prison. Fighters from across the universe are brought into Hvalkatar to enrich the fights. Some of those fighters make the trip willingly, eager to pit their skills against the inmates of the prison. Other fighters are not as willing, and they are forced to fight in order to one day regain their freedom. The subject of this “Figure in Focus” article is one of these poor souls who has found themselves abducted and forced to fight in The Grave. We give you the “Stinger from Sector 84”, Kanoxx Vull!
The Red Spiral
When the brute-scale Kanoxx figure was unveiled as part of the “Gravenight” wave, he not only introduced that new figure scale into the Cosmic Legions line, but he also was the first character revealed from a new group known as The Red Spiral. According to the intelligence provided on this specific group:
Tucked far away in one of the deepest pockets of the system there lurks a colony of scavengers and outliers known as The Red Spiral. Taking its name from the clustered mass of scavenged space refuse it calls home, The Spiral is a civilization constantly struggling to survive. In the early days of The Spiral, many of the battered residents were enhanced cybernetically, initially out of necessity due to injuries sustained while working and then later for the purposes of upgrading to better fulfill daily tasks. These enhancements have grown to signify cultural status and symbolize brotherhood. With their cobbled-together appearance reflecting and paying tribute to the thrown-together, makeshift structures they call home, the Spiralytes’ purpose and loyalties could not be more unified.
The nature of the Spiralytes is further described in the bio information for Kanoxx Vull.
Located deep within the fifth circle, The Red Spiral is a community of laborers and traders trying to endure the rigors of living at the far edge of the system. These conditions result in a community of rugged and resilient citizens whose work ethic is as solid as their unity. It is for these reasons, along with enhanced strength, resilience and survival instincts, that members of The Red Spiral are coveted by fight ring promoters across the system. Every time he steps into The Grave, Kanoxx Vull’s fighting style and jagged, intimidating visage exemplify the traits of his kin.
As we read here, the very traits that allow members of The Red Spiral to survive in their inhospitable home has also made them a target for unscrupulous fight promotors looking to put on a good show, regardless of whom they hurt in the process. Add in the cybernetic enhancements that many of the members of the Spiral have added to their bodies and those promoters have potential fighters whose menacing appearance looks great on a fight poster promoting the bouts and whose stamina and power is guaranteed to make for a great show. It is for this reason that, despite the remote location of The Red Spiral outpost on SubRing 19 Sector 84, these promotors sponsor raiding expeditions in order to “secure” some of the most promising Spiralytes for their contests. This is exactly what happened to Kanoxx Vull, as is revealed in this additional intelligence.
Of considerable and commanding stature, “Kanoxx the Stinger” was a prized acquisition for the fight ring of Hvalkatar. Snatched up while scavenging for food and supplies for his sub-sector, this silent yet fierce competitor desperately seeks to return to the quiet isolation of his home. For Kanoxx Vull, each win is simply another step on the path to one day escaping Hvalkatar and returning to The Spiral.
When fighters in The Grave first see Kanoxx, they are taken aback by that “intimidating visage”, imagining him to be little more than a mindless brute with his giant mace and cybernetic limbs. Many Legions fans probably expected the same from this character when he was first unveiled as an opponent for the mighty Kraggnar. Upon further review of the data, however, we discover that this first impression is quite false. Kanoxx is not a mindless brute eager to crush his next opponent. He is an unwilling participant in the fights of The Grave, doing what he has to do in hopes of escaping the situation he now finds himself in so that he can return to his home in The Red Spiral.
In Cosmerrium, few things are exactly as they appear, and what we know about many of the characters is simply the start of their larger and more complex story. Often times, these stories stretch back for many, many years. In the case of Kanoxx Vull, we have to go all the way back to 1984 if we want to explore his beginnings.
In a previous Figure in Focus article we posted on the character of Olek Thygar, we looked at character sketches done by a young Eric Treadaway – sketches that would become the basis for the Thygar figure 36 years later! Interestingly, the design for Kanoxx Vull is even older than the one for Thygar!
Eric Treadaway first sketched out a “mechanical monster” he called “Stinger” back in 1984. In fact, Eric sketched out not only Stinger, but an entire line of characters, vehicles, and playsets that he imagined as an action figure line. The date on these sketches, which were done in a spiral notebook with a red cover, is November 12, 1984. This notebook and that initial sketch are shown below, along with the full page of the characters Eric created (of course, the other designs are blurred out to keep some secrets which may find their way into future waves). Not only did the overall look of Kanoxx come from the early design work seen here, but other aspects of the character did as well. “The Red Spiral” affiliation name is a nod to the red spiral notebook Eric used to create these characters, and the planet of origin of “SubRing 19 Sector 84” is in reference to the year the character was designed.
Many years after these sketches were done, Eric would discover this notebook and the ideas he had laid out in his youth. From a kid who would create “action figures” using popsicle sticks to the co-owner of a company designing and producing action figures, he became excited about the prospect of building on those early ideas and updating the designs in a way that they could be released. The images below show some more modern sketches Eric did after discovering the red spiral notebook in question.
One of the pieces of feedback we have seen on the character design for Kanoxx “The Stinger” Vull is that he very much feels like a character from 1980’s sci-fi. We’ve even seen some people compare him to the version of Iron Maiden’s Eddie character that appears on their “Somewhere in Time” album. These comparisons make sense when you learn that Kanoxx was indeed first conceived during this period. In fact, Eric drew his initial sketch almost 2 full years before that Iron Maiden album was released!
Place Your Bets on Kanoxx Vull
The Kanoxx Vull figure, as well as the rest of the “Cosmic Legions – Hvalkatar: Book Two, Gravenight” wave are available for preorder now. The preorder period ends on 5/1/22, so if you want to add the “Stinger of Sector 84” to your Cosmic collection, be sure to head to StoreHorsemen.com to get your order in!
Published on 04.12.22