As creatures of the imagination, we rarely see our favorite characters doing the things we need to do in the real world to survive. Eating is a particular practice we only see characters do once in a great while. Occasionally, we may see Rorschach scarfing down a can of beans between cases or Spider-Man snatching a slice before being teleported, but this is uncommon since it can interfere with the story’s pacing. Even less often do we see a character taking the time to prepare a meal. Still, character development being what it is, a few comic book individuals have been marked as great chefs. So, who are the best chefs and cooks in the comics?
Between running a household, cleaning the mansion, laying out his employer’s clothes, providing IT support, and occasionally performing battlefield surgery, the Batman probably isn’t paying his multi-talented butler Alfred what he’s Penny-worth. He’s an excellent cook, able to prepare everything from haute cuisine to basic meals, depending on who he’s serving. Sadly, Batman rarely appreciates how good of a cook Alfred can be. More than once, Alfred presents his boss/surrogate son with a scrumptious meal on a literal silver platter, upon which the Batman, teeth gritted, claims he’s too busy crime-fighting to eat. Of course, Alfred always rewards this behavior with a proper eye roll and sarcastic quip.
Yo Joe! When asking, “Who are the best chefs and cooks in the comics?” we can’t forget Marvin F. Hinton, better known as Roadblock for the secret elite anti-terrorist unit GI Joe. Originally, Hinton/Roadblock wanted to be a gourmet chef, but he joined the army instead. He began as a cook but transferred since army food—surprise—grossed him out. Big, brawny, and able to carry a humongous M2 Browning machine gun the way other soldiers carried rifles, Hinton proved a great soldier. Yet, he still longed for a culinary life. Between missions, Roadblock continued to cook great meals, wrote cookbooks, and even hosted a cooking show. No doubt a virtual cooking class is in his future as well.
Anime fans will recognize Sebastian as the demonic but suave title character of Black Butler. Preoccupied with running the Phantomhive household, he leaves the cooking to Baldroy, the chef, but Sebastian can work up a hell of a dessert. Previous issues and episodes of the manga and series featured devilishly good curry buns, sinisterly delicious blackberry cornmeal cakes, and a decadent gateau au chocolat.
Wong has come a long way since his first stereotypical appearance in 1963 as Doctor Strange’s mysterious Asian servant. Now on a more equal footing with Strange and one of his instructors in the mystical arts in Kamar-Taj, he’s given to telling the arrogant Sorcerer Supreme when he’s acting a little too supreme. Not just an expert martial artist, Wong continues to be known as a great chef. No doubt he’s capable of whipping up the best recipes Kamar-Taj has to offer.