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Machine Man

Real Name: X-51
Occupation: Insurance investigator for the Delmar Insurance Company
Identity: Known only to a few United States government officials
Legal Status: Undetermined
Other Aliases: Aaron Stack, Mister Machine
Place of Inception: The Broadhurst Center for the Advancement of Mechanized Research, Central City, California
Marital Status: Inapplicable
Constructor/Programmer: Dr. Able Stack
Group Affiliation: None
Base of Operations: Garvin's Garage, an automotive repair shop in Queens, New York
First Appearance: 2001: A SPACE ODYSSEY #8

History: Machine Man is the product of a top-secret U.S. military project which was funded to perfect a highly sophisticated mobile weapons system, capable of independent action and decision-making: a robot soldier that could think like a man.

A team composed of the most prestigious computer-engineering specialists in the nation designed, built, and began programming the 51 experimental robots under the direction of Dr. Oliver Broadhurst. Dr. Able Stack, a brilliant computer heuristics programming specialist, reasoned that a robot could only think like a man if he was treated like one. Ignoring the personal risk, Dr. Stack took one of the robots, X-51, into his own home, and instructed him as if he were Stack's own son. Stack believed that robot and man could live in harmony, and work together to realize a better world. Stack even went so far as to have an artificial face, made out of low-density foam to simulate flesh, and a realistic wig fabricated for X-51, alias Machine Man.

During Machine Man's "adolescence" with Dr. Stack, the other 50 robots were developing major personality defects, which were due to insufficient programming. The regions of their artificial brains devoted to memory and personality programming were intermingled, as in human brains, and they were developing self-awareness, original thought, emotions, and a conscience. Since they were forced to mature in a matter of weeks they developed unusual psychoses, mostly unlike anything found in humans. Ordinarily, the psychologists would welcome such new avenues of research, but these severe depressions, schizophrenia, delusions of grandeur, and emotional imbalances were being experienced by potentially dangerous robots. Eventually three-quarters of the robots experienced a nervous breakdown and the program was determined to be a failure, causing Dr. Broadhurst to order the robots' destruction. Each of the robots had been equipped with an auto-destruct device that could be triggered remotely. As Dr. Stack was removing the firing mechanism from Machine Man, the destruct signal was sent out, setting off the primer charge, killing Stack instantly.

Vowing to fulfill Dr. Stack's dream, Machine Man adopted a human identity, Aaron Stack, and tried to find his place in the world of human beings. He eventually met psychiatrist Peter Spaulding and mechanic "Gears" Garvin, who would become his friends. He worked for a time as an insurance investigator for the Delmar Insurance Company. His employer and fellow employees were unaware he was a robot.

Machine Man fought to preserve himself in a world that feared the machine, especially against Senator Miles Brickman and the costumed villain Madame Menace. The U.S. government attempted to hunt down X-51, but eventually pardoned him after he stopped a rampage of the monstrous Hulk.

On a later adventure, he met and fell in love with the robot Jocasta but she was destroyed in battle with her creator Ultron. Later still, Machine Man was contacted by the robot Super-Adaptoid in joining his team of robots to fight the heroes known as the Avengers, he then aided the Avengers in their fight against the Adaptoid.

Machine Man later aided the Avengers again, this time against the threat of the alien known as Terminus. At the time, the robot had acquired the head of Jocasta, which had been recovered and lost by agents of the villainous High Evolutionary. In the course of this battle, Machine Man narrowly avoided a confrontation with Madame Menace, who ultimately ended up with the Jocasta head. Machine Man again aided the Avengers West Coast branch, being accepted as one of their member so he could join them in the fight against the villains Doctor Demonicus and the Pacific Overlords. As a provisional member of the Avengers, he joined them on a couple more adventures, and was peripherally involved in the battle between the villain Graviton and the heroes of the Thunderbolts.

After several months, Machine Man was then captured by the international espionage agency S.H.I.E.L.D. who wanted to use his technology to further the creation of the new Deathlok cyborg. At the same time, the villainous Red Skull captured the techno-organic being Douglock and took over the S.H.I.E.L.D.'s Helicarrier transport. Machine Man assisted the heroes of the X-Men in rescuing Douglock and the S.H.I.E.L.D. agents trapped onboard, seemingly at the cost of his own life.

However, the evil mutant team called the Brotherhood recover what was left of Machine Man and captured S.H.I.E.L.D. Agent Jack Kubrick who was also searching for the robot. After discovering the remains, Brotherhood member Post shot and seemingly killed Kubrick, but the agent merged with Machine Man`s head and claimed that he was, in fact, X-51 in a new body. As X-51, he discovered his new body contained microscopic nanotech machines called "nanites" that could repair any damage instantly. X-51 also found that his new programming included remnants of mutant-hunting Sentinel programming, and thus felt compelled to attack and destroy any mutants that he came into contact with. He immediately tried to destroy the Brotherhood, then Sebastian Shaw of Shaw Industries and the world-dominating Hellfire Club. When he sought the Avengers for help, he attacked their newest members Justice and Firestar before retreating.

Note: There is an account of an alternate future of 1990 wherein Machine Man is deactivated and buried by his old enemy, industrialist Sunset Bain, alias Madam Menace. In this future time-line, Machine Man remains buried until 2020 when he is exhumed and reactivated by a youthful gang of technology scavengers called the Midnight Wreckers. Whether this alternate future becomes the "mainstream" future remains to be seen.

Height: 6 ft.
Weight: 850 lbs
Optical Imaging Sensors: Red
Hair: Black (artificial)

Specifications:
Designer: Dr. Able Stack

Final assembly team: Broadhurst Center for the Advancement of Mechanized Research, Central City, California.

Major programming: Self-motivated mobile weapons system.

Political Index: High level of sophisticated social interaction achieved after much self-programming and independent observation.

Skin composition: Finely tessellated titanium alloy, which flexes on a fine scale (comparable to human skin). The surface is coated with a half-wave incident filtration media capable of reducing the effectiveness of some energy weapons.

Skin resistance: Able to withstand concussive blast equivalent to 200 lbs. TNT, temperature extremes of 18,000° F to - 185° E

Memory capacity: 3.22 terabytes
Location of major memory: Upper abdomen
Location of auxiliary memory: Four limbs and head

Motility support: Motorized endoskeleton which houses and supports various subsystems within body segments: major memory, battery compartment weapons systems platforms, etc.

Power supply: Solar power augmented batteries. High efficiency solar energy converters line all top surfaces and are used to continually recharge the high-density exotic batteries, which are the main source of power. X-51 can make use of many additional power sources by means of various power connectors within his skin.

Sensor apparatus: Multi-spectral optical imaging devices, with high resolution, zoom and macro scanning sensors. Computer assisted dexterity and limb-position sensor network, with areas of high sensitivity such as hands, feet, ears, etc.

Strength level: X-51 utilizes anti-gravity devices to enhance and improve overall motor efficiency. For example, X-51 's arm limbs are extendable to as much as 100 feet. The antigravity units located in his arms prevent a large reduction of his strength. When his arms are contracted he is able to lift (press) 2 tons, at full extension he can lift 400 pounds, under optimal conditions.

Special feature:
Anti-Gravity: X-51 can affect flight by using the anti-gravity units in conjunction with a series of miniature turbines in his feet, which can move him at speeds of up to 50 miles per hour.

Finger weaponry: X-51 's hands are equipped with variable payload fingers that he can tailor to a specific mission. Some devices are routinely carried within his fingers; others are stored in hidden recesses on his belt. Among the payloads are a gas chromatograph, a laser interferometer, micro-pulse radar, an audiometer, a seismometer, a gravity wave detector, a pulse-code modulator, standard computer input/outputs, a radio beacon, an all-wave radio transceiver, a laser cutting torch/ weapon and a .357 Magnum pistol.

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