Difference between revisions of "Viktor"

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Revision as of 13:58, 5 August 2013

Viktor Vasko
Desc viktor.jpg
First appearance in comic

"Introduction 3"
First appearance with dialog


April 16, 1886
Place of Birth

Pressburg (Bratislava),
Age at start of comic

Gender Male
Family Unnamed Daughter[1]

Viktor Ladislav Vasko[2] is a member of the Lackadaisy crew. Though he is nominally the bartender, he was a triggerman under Atlas until he was injured in a confrontation with Mordecai.[3] He first appears in a photograph of the Lackadaisy regulars in "Introduction 3". Viktor is mentioned by Mitzi in "Formaldehyde", and appears in the comic in "Quantentheorie". As of "Spaghetti" he has worked for Lackadaisy for seven years.

In the comic

Volume 1

In "Formaldehyde", Mitzi sends Rocky and Ivy to find Viktor and seek his assistance in finding the car. She believes Viktor will be less likely to throttle Rocky in Ivy's presence.

In "Quantentheorie", Rocky and Ivy meet with Viktor in the garage. He appears to have either little patience or little understanding when they both speak to him simultaneously, as he hears noise rather than distinct words. Viktor observes that the padlock for the garage's entrance to the caverns has been opened, and is puzzled by this. Distracted by Rocky and Ivy, Viktor agrees to help Rocky retrieve the car and not kill Rocky.

In "Spaghetti", Viktor advises Rocky to quit as they drive to retrieve the car. He does not believe Rocky has a future in the business given his lack of muscles. Viktor notes that he has been working for seven years. Viktor (perhaps unintentionally) gives Rocky an idea for how to deal with the pig farmers, though he abruptly drops Rocky off at the car before hearing it.

Viktor next appears in "Growltiger", in his role as Lackadaisy's bartender. Mitzi and Horatio try to convince Viktor to wear a tuxedo, with a predictable lack of success. Viktor subsequently goes with Rocky to pick up booze from Captain Kehoe in "Hallelujah".

In "Bunny-box", Rocky and Viktor retrieve the liquor from Kehoe. Though Rocky seems to consider Mitzi to be a damsel in distress, Viktor disagrees, saying that Mitzi is, "vulnerable as like bear trap".

In "Drygulch", Viktor and Rocky return to the garage. After Rocky takes the trapdoor to Lackadaisy to find help bringing in the liquor, Viktor observes the pig farmers and Benjy Jessup approaching the garage with guns. Benjy and the farmers break into the garage and engage Viktor in a firefight in "Myopia".

Rocky and Zib return to the garage via the trapdoor in "Blindside"; this distraction unfortunately enables the pig farmers to shoot Viktor. In "Rowdydow", Viktor is almost shot by Benjy Jessup, who is making his way toward the exit when Ivy enters the garage. Seeing Viktor approaching, Benjy attempts to shoot him, but Ivy throws off his aim. Viktor subsequently punches him out, and in "Stranglehold" puts Benjy in a stranglehold. After realizing that Viktor has been shot, Ivy leaves to get assistance for him even though he claims...poorly...that he does not need it, and Benjy asks her not to leave. After Benjy states that he just wants to go to his truck and leave, Viktor states that it is now his truck.

Ivy returns to the garage in "Houdini", finding Viktor in a rare state of vulnerability. Ivy asks where Benjy has gone to, and after Viktor claims he let Benjy go, Ivy asks Viktor what really happened. Viktor then claims that Benjy vanished, only to have Ivy call him a bad liar, though she does not press the issue further. It seems evident that she has not noticed the tail sticking out of the back of the truck. By "Lassitude", Doctor Quackenbush has arrived and removed the bullet from Viktor's chest after heavily sedating him with chloral hydrate, in part because during a recent visit, Viktor almost removed Quackenbush's arms. Mitzi muses to a semi-conscious Viktor that it has been a bad year for him, between being shot in the chest and an injury to his good knee. Quackenbush advises Mitzi that Viktor may contract pneumonia, and that Wick paid for Quackenbush's visit.

Volume 2

Viktor is next seen in his apartment in "Cacophony", pushing the radio that Ivy turned on for him[4] off its shelf to stop it broadcasting. He is clearly in a weakened state, sitting in a chair and using a broom to move the radio rather than standing up. The temporary quiet is quickly broken by Ivy, Rocky and Freckle's arrival in "Deadeye". Though Viktor slams the door in their faces, Ivy persists in entering. After dropping magazines she picked up for Viktor in his lap, she introduces him to Freckle, declaring that they are dating. At that, Viktor directs his glare-beam at Freckle. In "Dotage", their conversation is interrupted by the arrival of Mrs. Bapka, Viktor's upstairs neighbor, who desires Viktor's assistance with her sink. When he is unable to get to his feet due to a coughing fit related to his injuries, Freckle and Ivy go in his place at Rocky's suggestion. Left alone with Viktor, Rocky asks, in "Defiance", where he can obtain quality alcohol, and Viktor directs him to Defiance.

In "Rhubarb", Ivy returns to Viktor's room after Freckle and Rocky have left. She asks him whether he is the reason that Chad is afraid of her, and he replies that, "Chad vas...bad". Ivy next asks about Claude, and Viktor states that, "Claude vas...flawed". Ivy proceeds to ask about Cecil, and Viktor says that Cecil was "no good". Ivy asks why Viktor has been sabotaging her social life when they are friends, but Viktor states that they are not friends and that she should not stay in St. Louis, especially given the events of the prior evening. Ivy asks whether Viktor is playing "concerned patriarch" only because he is bored due to his injuries keeping him from the activities he used to perform, but before he can respond she proclaims him a "monster" and leaves. In "Gallivant", Ivy yells to Viktor from outside his apartment that she is giving up on him.

In "Medicament", after Bobby mentions to Elsa that Ivy stated she was sent to Defiance by Viktor, Elsa asks how Viktor is doing and why he did not come to Defiance himself. Ivy replies that Viktor is, "slightly indisposed". In "Gravediggers", Viktor appears in flashback while Bobby is relating the story of their involvement with Lackadaisy to Ivy- after, "cattle rustling, train robbing rabble" began stealing alcohol that they were storing for Atlas, Atlas brought Viktor and Mordecai to Defiance; upon catching one of the rabble, they began burying him alive until he provided them with useful information. In "Bushwhack", Bobby continues his storytelling- Viktor and Mordecai's victim revealed that he was in league with a group of individuals competing with Marigold who would meet at a hunting lodge in Defiance to do business. Atlas dispatches Viktor and Mordecai; they use their victim to gain access to the lodge, then, after tossing in a grenade, go in shooting. Bobby speaks of Viktor to Ivy in "Powder-keg", noting that he believes Viktor, like many others, was traumatized by his experiences during World War I and was drawn to conflict upon his return to the United States. Bobby continues to recount his understanding of Viktor's background in "Transgression"- according to him, Viktor went on to be involved in a confrontation between dockworkers, strikebreakers and the authorities after some union leaders were arrested as a result of Palmer Raids. According to Atlas, it was during this confrontation that Viktor lost his right eye; he was injured by a pry-bar in an effort by the police to subdue him. This confrontation drew Viktor to Atlas's attention, as he had been at the docks on unrelated business. Atlas found a lawyer who arranged for Viktor's release after a reduced time in prison. Afterwards, Viktor worked for Atlas to pay off his debt, then continued to work for Atlas because he had no place else to go.

In "Coercion", Ivy convinces Bobby and Abelard to negotiate with her for access to liquor by claiming that Viktor may be upset with them for their wounding of Rocky. In "Brokerage", Elsa reveals to Ivy that Viktor has a daughter.


Viktor was photographed in a military uniform along with other men in uniform. Said picture appears in "Scrapbook". He was fighting for the United States during World War I.[5] The photograph was taken in France.[6] "Scrapbook" also includes a St. Louis Police Department record revealing that on January 12, 1920, Viktor was arrested on multiple assault charges. His address at the time was 1367-A N. Market. This record is likely a result of the incident described by Bobby in "Transgression".

"Sordid Sniffles" occurs shortly after Mordecai has shot and killed Sniffles in a car. According to Viktor he was a good driver who suffered from a sinus problem. Mordecai retorts that Sniffles's sinus problems were displeasing and he smelled a little bit like mayonnaise.

In "Valentino" Mordecai notices a woman making eyes at him, mistaking it for rudeness. Viktor corrects him and suggests that he give her a Valentino-like look in return. Mordecai's attempt is...unusual.

While driving together with The Poor Schmuck bound and gagged in the backseat of the car in "Quick-fix", Viktor and Mordecai get into an argument regarding the vehicle's symmetry, to the point that Viktor forgets he should be focusing on driving. The problem is resolved by removing The Schmuck from the equation.

The aftermath of a confrontation between Viktor and Mordecai and at least five other individuals is shown in "Massacre". Viktor and Mordecai are the only ones who are conscious. Though Mordecai is initially concerned about what emotional state he should be in following the fight, he is ultimately far more alarmed about his missing cufflinks.

In "Tannenbaum", Rocky encounters Viktor wearing a fuzzy green sweater given to him by Mrs. Bapka, a red tie given to him by Mordecai, a green-and-yellow hat and a yellow scarf both given to him by Ivy. Rocky launches into an impromptu performance of "O Tannenbaum". Viktor rewards him appropriately.

In "Wassail", Viktor and Mordecai have been volunteered by an unknown party to provide food for a party. In the midst of making cranberry sauce using a particularly splatter-worthy recipe provided by Viktor, they are interrupted by carollers. Afterwards, Mordecai notes that he would like the name of the party-planner so that he can share his recipe for murder...pie.

Viktor appears in a New Year's picture taken in Lackadaisy in 1926, shown in "New Year".

"Preview 0029" includes a flashback in which Mordecai gets intoxicated on Bunny Hugs and praises Viktor to no end, causing the surly feline to edge away from him.

In a rare display of humor, Viktor can be seen wearing Mordecai's glasses in "Disguise". Mordecai looks less than pleased.


Viktor is depicted in color in "Gallimaufry", "Preview 0014", "Preview 0028" and "Preview 0030". Tracy incorporated some lynx into Viktor's design.[7]

According to a St. Louis Police Department file shown in "Scrapbook" and dated January 12, 1920, Viktor was born on April 16, 1886, making him 41 years old at the time of the comic. He was born in Pressburg (Bratislava), Austria-Hungary.[8] He stands 6'6" and weighs 279 lbs. He has ruddy fur and green eyes. Viktor has numerous siblings and cousins with whom he worked on a farm as a child, and some of whom migrated to the United States with him, though they are no longer in contact.[9]

With regards to how he speaks, Tracy noted that Viktor, "Flatly says exactly what he means in a low, brusque voice with a heavy Slovakian accent (which is fairly Slavic sounding. Czech is perhaps the closest comparison I could make.) Articles like 'a' and 'the' that don't exist in most Slavic languages are frequently left out of his speech. “W” sounds more like “V” and English verb conjugation is still a bit of a black art to him in some cases".[10]

According to Tracy, Viktor did not complete his primary education. Regarding his favorite foods, Tracy notes that Viktor, "likes meat...but probably misses the sorts of lamb dishes, pork and sausage goulashes, potato dumplings and other such hearty, rural, soul-warming foods one does not so easily find in the urbanized corners of the States". Viktor enjoys drinking dark lagers or whiskey, but is not picky. Before moving to America he generally drank vodka, which would be difficult to find in the United States.[6] While growing up, "Viktor was robust and amorous; an uneducated workhorse content to be useful on a farm in rural East Europe or on the docks in the urban West". He is a former smoker.[11]

Regrading his involvement in an illegal business, Tracy has noted that, "Viktor had a strong code of ethics, but the way the world works seems to have alleviated him of it to an extent. By his more world-weary, watered down standards, any man who wilfully casts his lot into the underground liquor trade also willfully accepts what’s coming to him. If he has to cave someone’s skull in with a shovel in the course of a night’s work, so be it; if someone delivers him a lethal dose of lead poisoning in return, that’s fair enough. No party need trouble themselves with tremendous guilt as long as these simple rules of engagement are understood".[6] While speaking with Ivy, Bobby theorizes that Viktor was traumatized by his experiences during World War I and was drawn to conflict upon his return to the United States.[12] Viktor has a dislike of noise...especially noise made by other peoples' mouths.[13] Tracy has noted that Viktor accepts responsibility for the situation he finds himself in, and does not spare any pity for himself or his co-workers.[9]

Though he often appears to be in a surly mood, Viktor is not without social skills; "Valentino" illustrates that he does know how to reciprocate a woman's interest, and he once had a long-lived relationship.[10] That being said, "Quick-fix" illustrates that when drawn into an argument, perhaps especially with Mordecai, Viktor can forget his surroundings.

Viktor's most notable physical feature may be that he is missing his right eye, which according to Bobby he lost during the same dockyard confrontation that brought him to the attention of Atlas.[14] He wears a patch over this injury. Additionally Viktor has bad knees, as noted in "Quantentheorie". He had a good knee that suffered an injury within the past year, as noted by Mitzi in "Lassitude". Viktor sustains further injury in the form of a chest wound in "Blindside". Though his wounds are treated by Dr. Quackenbush, when next seen in "Cacophony" he appears unable to rise from a chair.

Viktor is a Slovak[15]. He frequently speaks with a noticeable accent, using broken English and words such as "naow" (now) and "ya".[16] Viktor speaks Slovak as well, using terms such as "dievka" ("young girl"[17]).[16] Regarding Viktor's family, Tracy had this to say- "...they a tall (sic), broad-shouldered, hearty, ruddy-haired stubborn pack of mules. They’re prideful of their self-reliance, and most of them have a sort of domineering physical presence by virtue of size that lends them a natural confidence or even a sense of arrogance. As a result, I suspect none of them take it very well when they let themselves down or require any sort of help in the course of their lives." She added the following regarding other relatives- "A couple of older brothers who already had families of their own remained in his homeland. Viktor, his lady love, and his other siblings immigrated to the States with an aunt and uncle and some cousins. Many of them went separate ways by necessity - they simply had to diverge from each other to find work. He gradually lost touch with some of them over the course of time, especially after the Great War. His particular career path and not-so-sunny disposition would have done a good deal to alienate the remaining family members he was still in contact with following the war."[7]

Viktor joined Lackadaisy in 1920-1921.[18] Bobby states in "Transgression" that this occurred after Atlas arranged for a reduced prison sentence for Viktor following the dockyard incident that cost Viktor his eye. While Viktor initially worked for Atlas to pay off his debt, he stayed afterwards because he had nowhere else to go. "Medicament" establishes that Viktor is familiar with Bobby and Elsa; Elsa expresses concern for his well-being, and Ivy tells her that Viktor is, "slightly indisposed". According to Bobby, Viktor on some occasions came to Defiance with Atlas and Mordecai.

Viktor is shot by the pig farmers in "Blindside". Though in "Stranglehold" he claims to Ivy that he is not badly injured, it is obvious that he needs medical attention, and he is treated by Doctor Quackenbush in "Lassitude", who notes that Viktor may contract penumonia.

According to Ivy, there are "probable outstanding warrants" for Viktor.[19] In "Transgression", Bobby relates his understanding of an incident where Viktor was arrested and served time in prison, while "Scrapbook" includes a police file on Viktor, with charges of multiple assault. His case history indicates that he earlier incited violence at the municipal docks during a strikers' rally. Mitzi states in "Haggersnash" that Viktor knows where Lackadaisy can obtain decent booze quickly.

In response to reader questions regarding Viktor's sexuality, Tracy has noted that he, "probably couldn't be any straighter".[7]

When asked whether Viktor has any hobbies, Tracy noted that Viktor, "has passed many of his off the clock hours playing Mr. Fix-it for his neighbors. He’s a bit of a gearhead too. He likes tinkering with things that don’t talk or otherwise make a lot of indecipherable noises at him, or get upset and leave when he smashes things".[6] According to Tracy, for Christmas Viktor would most like for someone to slide a steak under his door but otherwise leave him alone.[13]

Glare beam

As Rocky notes in "Quantentheorie", Viktor often looks at others with a particularly intimidating expression. Rocky facetiously theorizes that this may be a result of Viktor's "hate energy" being amplified and focused through his remaining eye. This glare beam is shown in its full glory when he directs it upon Freckle in "Deadeye", the net result of which is to make Freckle extremely uncomfortable.


Viktor is depicted as a human in "Preview 0013", "Counterpart" and "Viktor Faces".



According to Bobby in "Transgression", Viktor first came to Atlas's attention while the former was involved in a confrontation between dockworkers, strikebreakers and the authorities. Atlas found a lawyer for Viktor and succeeded in having Viktor's prison sentence reduced. In return Viktor went to work for Atlas to pay off his debt, and continued working for him because he had nowhere else to go.


Viktor is introduced to Freckle by Ivy in "Deadeye", who also reveals Freckle's real first name. Upon Ivy mentioning that she has decided that Freckle and her are dating, Viktor directs his glare beam upon Freckle, making the latter extremely uncomfortable.


As evidenced in "Growltiger", Viktor does not seem to think highly of Horatio. After Horatio suggests that Viktor would enjoy wearing a tuxedo, Viktor "compromises" by saying he would enjoy wearing it to Horatio's funeral.


Ivy appears to be one of the few individuals who can make physical contact with Viktor without him reacting violently, as evidenced in "Quantentheorie". She appears to consider their interactions playful, and says to Rocky that Viktor is "just a big teddy bear". Ivy is one of the few people whom Viktor appears to let his guard down around, as she has actually seen him in a vulnerable state.[20]

In "Rhubarb", Ivy realizes that Viktor has been sabotaging her social life and that he does not want her to be involved with Lackadaisy. She rebuffs his concerns, calling him a "monster" and storming out. In "Gallivant", Ivy yells to Viktor from outside his apartment that she is giving up on him.


Mitzi is Viktor's employer, and as such he seems to grant her somewhat more latitude than others. In "Growltiger", she calls him, "Vinegar Tom", and tries to encourage Viktor, not for the first time, to wear a tuxedo, as she believes he would look good...and less intimidating...in one. According to Mitzi, Viktor was measured for a tuxedo previously, after they got him very drunk. After Horatio sides with Mitzi, Viktor agrees to wear a tuxedo to Horatio's funeral, leading Mitzi to point out that Viktor has a tendency to confuse threats and compromises.

Viktor seems to be very irritated when Mitzi pokes fun of his disability in "Hallelujah".

In "Bunny-box", after Rocky expresses his feelings that Mitzi is a damsel in distress, Viktor disagrees, saying that Mitzi is, "vulnerable as like bear trap".

Mitzi appears genuinely concerned for Viktor when Zib mentions that he is "down" in "Malarkey", and moreso when she sees him in "Lassitude", noting that between the gunshot to his chest and an earlier injury to his good knee, it has not been a good year for him. Mitzi later tells Wick that Viktor is one of the, "few vestiges", she has left and that she could not do without him.[21]


"Sordid Sniffles", "Valentino", "Quick-fix" and "Massacre", set before the timeframe of the comic, depict Viktor and Mordecai working together. Though they appeared to have rather passionate debates, matters always resolved themselves amicably...at least for the two of them.

In "Heartstrings", Mitzi notes that Viktor and Mordecai worked together for years, and Mordecai's recent disarmament of Lackadaisy almost got Viktor killed. Mordecai notes that Viktor should not have been involved, that in fact Mordecai reasoned with Viktor to retire before Mordecai left Lackadaisy himself. Though Mitzi points out that Mordecai's form of reasoning involved kneecapping Viktor, Mordecai responds that that is, "how one reasons with Viktor".


Viktor appears to barely tolerate Rocky, likely in part due to Rocky's excitability and verbosity. He does not believe Rocky has a future in the booze-running business due to Rocky's lack of muscle, though Rocky considers himself Viktor's protégé.[22][23]. Rocky calls Viktor, "Vinegar", in "Defiance", but this appears to be an exception rather than a common occurrence.


According to Tracy, "Viktor's modeled after a one-eyed ruddy longhair an aunt of mine had when I was a kid. He was big and may have been a maine coon, but I can't be certain. The character's got a lot of bobcat-like features mixed into his design, though, to set him apart a bit in terms of girth".[24]

Regarding his name-

Viktor's earliest inspiration was a cat named Roscoe. They shared the name for about five minutes before I began fleshing out the character and realized that name didn't work at all, especially for someone who had trudged over from the Old World. Roscoe somehow morphed into the Vasko portion of his name. For the rest, I spent a lot of time considering Slavic names like Vassily, but couldn't justify using anything so pretty. Although I had no sentimental attachment to or affinity for the name, Viktor kept insisting upon itself. I think it was something about the hard k sound in the middle...and the unkind humor in bestowing it upon someone so incrementally broken down as he.
—Tracy, [25]

Tracy interviews Viktor in "Preview 0011" regarding what happened to his eye. Viktor leaves in a fit of surliness. "Reader Question: Ivy and Viktor" reveals Ivy's reaction to the notion that people might fancy the notion of her and Viktor in a relationship. He does not get a word in edgewise. On the other hand, a similar question regarding Viktor and Mordecai caused Viktor to die laughing, as shown in "Reader Question: Viktor and Mordecai". "Reader Question: Viktor" suggests that were Viktor to come into a large sum of money, presented in an annoying manner by Rocky, he would proceed to kill Rocky with the check, go hang gliding to a bank, then cash the check in order to make the Louisiana Purchase on his own terms.