Beast (comics)

Beast is a fictional superhero appearing in American comic books published by Marvel Comics and is a founding member of the X-Men. Called "The Beast", the character was introduced as a mutant possessing ape-like superhuman physical strength and agility, oversized hands and feet, a genius-level intellect, otherwise normal appearance and speech. Being referred to as "Beast", Hank McCoy underwent progressive physiological transformations, permanently gaining animalistic physical characteristics; these include blue fur, both simian and feline facial features, pointed ears and claws. Beast's physical strength and senses increased to greater levels. Despite Hank McCoy's inhuman appearance, he is depicted as a brilliant, well-educated man in the arts and sciences, known for his witty sense of humor, characteristically uses barbed witticisms with long words and intellectual references to distract his foes, he is a world authority on biochemistry and genetics, the X-Men's medical doctor, the science and mathematics instructor at the Xavier Institute.

He is a mutant political activist, campaigning against society's bigotry and discrimination against mutants. While fighting his own bestial instincts and fears of social rejection, Beast dedicates his physical and mental gifts to the creation of a better world for man and mutant. One of the original X-Men, Beast has appeared in X-Men-related comics since his debut, he has been a member of the Avengers and Defenders. The character has appeared in media adaptations, including animated TV series and feature films. In X2, Steve Bacic portrayed him in a brief cameo in his human appearance while in X-Men: The Last Stand he was played by Kelsey Grammer. Nicholas Hoult portrayed a younger version of the character in X-Men: First Class. Both Hoult and Grammer reprised their roles in X-Men: Days of Future Past. Hoult reprised the role in X-Men: Apocalypse and Dark Phoenix, had a cameo in Deadpool 2. Created by writer Stan Lee and artist/co-writer Jack Kirby, the character first appeared in X-Men #1. Stan Lee writes in the foreword to X-Men: The Ultimate Guide that he made Beast the most articulate and well-read of the X-Men to contrast with his brutish exterior.

Further, the book opines that the Werner Roth-Roy Thomas team garnered admiration for their "appealing and sensitive characterizations of the original X-Men". Roth, under the alias Jay Gavin, had taken over for Kirby by issue #18, Thomas was a new talent. Beast was given an individualized, colorful new costume, along with the rest of the X-Men by issue #39 in order to attract new readers. During Jim Steranko's tenure, which added "exciting art", Roth returned, working with Neal Adams who blended Kirby's style with "realism, idealized beauty, epic grandeur". In Amazing Adventures #11, written by Gerry Conway, Beast underwent a radical change and mutated into his now familiar furry, blue appearance; the concept originated with Roy Thomas, an effort to make the character more visibly striking, Beast became more werewolf-like to capitalize on the success of Werewolf by Night. Steve Englehart, who wrote the remainder of the Beast's short-lived spotlight in Amazing Adventures, emphasized the character's wit rather than the tragedy of his transformation into a more monstrous form, reasoning that the Beast's intelligence and sense of humor would allow him to see his misfortune in perspective.

Over the next decade the Beast would appear on the roster of several teams in titles ranging from The Avengers to The Defenders to X-Factor. It wasn't until 1991, in X-Factor #70/X-Men #1, that the Beast returned to the X-Men. Englehart said that he added the Beast to the Avengers roster because he wanted to write the character again and thought his funny, down-to-earth personality would make him a good foil for Moondragon. Succeeding writers of The Avengers found that the character's lightheartedness made a good balance to the team's serious tone, resulting in the Beast's run in The Avengers outlasting his earlier run in X-Men, his friendship with fellow Avenger Wonder Man would come to eclipse his friendship with X-Man Iceman for the comics fandom. The Avengers #137 debuted the Beast's catchphrase, "Oh, my stars and garters," and The Avengers #164 was the first to depict him as a sex symbol, a take which writer Jim Shooter said resulted in positive mail from female readers in particular. Beast cured the Legacy Virus in Uncanny X-Men #390, in X-Treme X-Men #3 he experienced a further mutation into a feline being, first shown in the introduction to New X-Men, by Frank Quitely and Grant Morrison.

As evidenced on the back cover of X-Treme X-Men Vol. 1, Chris Claremont, writer of that series in addition to both Uncanny X-Men and X-Factor, contributed much to the Beast's characterization. Citing Claremont as inspiration for his run on New X-Men, Morrison explains Beast as a "brilliant, witty bipolar scientist". Morrison continues, "I saw Henry McCoy as an clever, cultured, well-traveled, well-read character so I brought out those parts of his personality which seemed to me to fit the profiles of the smartest and most worldly people I know – his sense of humor is dark and oblique. He's quite bipolar and swings between manic excitement and ghastly self-doubt, he has no dark secrets and nothing to hide."Joss Whedon's "Astonishing X-Men: Gifted" story arc featured a "mutant cure" designed by Indian Benetech scientist Dr. Kavita Rao

Oulton Abbey

St Mary's Abbey, Oulton is a suppressed Benedictine abbey located in the village of Oulton near Stone in Staffordshire, England. The Abbey church is Grade II* listed, other buildings are Grade II; the community was founded in 1624 at Ghent, from a motherhouse established in Brussels in 1598 by Lady Mary Percy. In 1794 as a result of the French Revolution they were forced to flee to England, settling at Preston, moving in 1811 to Caverswall Castle, Stoke on Trent. In 1853 the sisters purchased Oulton House, they commissioned Edward Welby Pugin to remodel the house and build a church. A chapter house and sacristy were added in 1892. In 1925 a chapel to St Benedict was built between the chapter house and the sanctuary, on the south side; the sisters operated a small boarding school at the Abbey until 1969, after which the school building was converted into a retreat centre for up to twenty-four retreatants, this continued until 1989 when the building was converted again, this time for nursing care.

In 2002 the Benedictine community from Fernham Priory, Oxfordshire closed their house and many members moved into Oulton Abbey. The Abbey community is under the charge of an Abbess, elected by the members and holds the position for life, since 1624 twenty-two Lady Abbesses have held the post, those in recent history are listed below: 17. Dame Juliana Forster - Bought the community to Oulton and oversaw the building of the church 18. Dame Mary Catherine Beech - Oversaw the extensions and remodelling of Oulton House 19. Dame Laurentia Ward - The daughter of William George Ward 20. Dame Gertrude Beech - Extended the church with the new chapel 21. Dame Mary Agnes Spray - Oversaw the closure of the school and the opening of the retreat house 22. Dame Mary Benedicta Scott - Oversaw the opening of the nursing home and the closure of the Abbey A new nursing home was built for the Abbey in 2017.. A nursery school is operated within the grounds. By 2019 with just three nuns remaining in the community, the decision was taken to suppress the Abbey, with the remaining nuns joining Stanbrook Abbey in North Yorkshire, although the last abbess Dame Benedicta Scott remains at Oulton as a resident of the nursing home, a Priest remains in residence and the chapel continues as a public Mass Centre.

Plans are under discussion about the possibility of converting the abbey buildings into assisted living apartments. Listed buildings in Stone Rural

Augustus Barber

Augustus "Gus" Barber was an American businessman and founder of Barber Foods. Born in 1927 to Armenian parents who fled the Armenian genocide, Barber served in the U. S. Army during World War II and became a ship welder at the Portland docks. In 1955 Barber opened up Barber Beef and Poultry to be known as Barber Foods. Barber was one of the first meat cutters to offer cut up chicken parts such as legs and thighs while most traders offered whole chickens. In years the company became kitchen based and had 800 employees. Half of Barber's work force were immigrants, he always had pledged to other people, he offered English lessons to his employees on site. He retired as chairman in 2002. Barber died on November 2008 after going into cardiac arrest. Barber Foods