Last night a small army of beer-loving comic book geeks descended upon Brooklyn Brewery, where a delicious new limited-edition beer was unveiled as part of a NYC Comic-Con tie-in. Called "The Defender," the special draft-only IPA will be poured exclusively during Comic-Con next month, but some kegs will also be sent to area bars (find the locations here). Last night we got to try and POW! It's boffo. In a speech for the assembled superheroes, gifted Brewmaster Garrett Oliver explained how he got his suds so sensational:

Once, a long time ago, benevolent Beer Gods bestrode the lands of the world, bringing wonderful beer and great happiness to the People. Collaborating joyously among themselves, the Beer Gods defended the pleasures of the table and promulgated the virtues of Flavor, Variety, Deliciousness, Versatility and Honesty in beer. And the People loved them for it.

But the Beer Gods were far too trusting - in truth, they were not without enemies. Out of the stygian depths of the Earth’s crust rose a cabal of anti-Beer Gods, the Megaliths. Taking the peaceful Beer Gods by surprise, the warlike Megaliths cast a powerful spell that drove the Beer Gods down into the shadows. Flavorful beer vanished from the land, and the People wept. Their victory complete, the Megaliths sent among us the ghostly pale, thin tasteless beers known colloquially as “foam jobs”. Blandness led to mediocrity, mediocrity led to hate, and hate led to suffering. And O, how the People suffered! They forgot the true taste of beer, the soft rustle of barley, the smell of hops.

And then, just as it seemed that the darkness had stamped out all good things, a new dawn rose over Brooklyn. A hero came to rescue the people from the iron grip of the Megaliths - The Defender! Spawned in deepest Brooklyn and robed in a cowl of shimmering amber, the Defender wielded the rich power of caramel malts, the sharpest unbreakable blade of pure hop bitterness and an incredible focused blast of hop aroma to shatter the Megalith’s spell.

The Beer Gods awoke to find themselves forever shielded within the hearts of the People, and once again the great virtues of true beer spread through the land. Even now, the Defender will be a light to you in dark places, when all other lights go out. Should your shadow ever grow long, your spirit sag, and your knees buckle, you need only remember these words — BRING FORTH THE DEFENDER!

Oliver also revealed that the swords wielded by him and his team for The Defender's promotional photos were very real and very sharp. And he's something of an expert. "I must admit in college I sold weaponry at science fiction conventions," Oliver said. "Nobody ever got hurt and anyway the statute of limitations has run out."