Occupation: Would-be conqueror
Identity: Secret. His existence is unknown to the general
Legal Status: None
Former Status: None
Place of Birth: Somewhere in northern Asia.
Marital Status: Unknown
Known Relatives: None
Group Affiliation: None
Balm of Operations: Unknown
First Appearance: ALPHA FLIGHT #2
History: Forty thousand years ago, during Earth's Ice
Age, an Asian tribe was migrating south in search of a warmer
climate. One of the tribe's members, a skilled fighter, continually
demanded more food, clothing, and women for himself at the expense
of the other tribe members. Finally, the tribe wearied of his
behavior and drove him out. The exile nearly died from having
to live alone in the harsh, frigid environment, but he nevertheless
survived and journeyed south.
One day he fell under a hypnotic command to journey far north.
He did so until he came to the source of the hypnotic command,
an immense starship. This was a colonization ship of the alien
Plodex. The Plodex method of conquest was to send a colonization
starship, which contained no adult Plodex but held millions
of Plodex eggs, to a world whose dominant life form was in the
early stages of cultural development. The starship would land
in the area of the planet that its computers judged to be the
most inhospitable to the native fauna, would rebuild itself
into a massive complex, and then broadcast a hypnotic signal
to cause representatives of the planet's native life form to
come to the ship. The most intelligent creature to survive the
journey to the starship would be judged by the ship's computers
to be a representative of the planet's dominant life form. The
starship would then capture, dissect, and analyze the specimen,
and imprint its genetic pattern on the millions of Plodex eggs.
The ship would then fire the virtually indestructible eggs on
ballistic paths that would send them all over the planet. The
creatures who would hatch from the eggs would be half-Plodex,
and half members of the dominant natives species in their genetic
make-up, and hence theoretically able not only to survive on
the planet but also to dominate it.
In this case, however, one of the starship's drive units had
exploded, causing it to crash on Earth. Damaged in the crash,
the starship launched all of its eggs before it had captured
a specimen of the dominant native life form. Nevertheless, the
starship still rebuilt itself into a colonization complex, broadcast
the hypnotic signal, and captured the exile when he arrived.
For days the exile's flesh, muscle, and tissue were peeled away
and his bones pulverized as the complex studied him. The pain
was so great that the still living exile went insane. Only his
brain was kept alive by the starship, which incorporated it
into its computer matrix.
But over the next thirty thousand years the strong-willed exile
overcame his insanity and came to take mental dominance over
the starship's entire computer system. Finally, he was able
to command the ship to construct a new, perfect human body for
himself. His link with the starship's computers made him aware
of everything that happened on Earth and gave him all of the
knowledge on Earth. Moreover, it gave him all of the knowledge
of the Plodex that had been stored in the starship's computers
when it had been launched. After ten thousand years of mastery
of the starship and the knowledge it gave him, the former exile
was ready to embark on his mission of conquest. Having mastered
so much knowledge and having achieved physical perfection, the
exile believed himself worthy of making himself master of the
world, and so he renamed himself the Master.
However, he was unable to free himself from the starship/complex,
for he had become so integrated a part of the ship that it would
not release him. Moreover, he determined that two of the Plodex
who had been contained in the ship's eggs had hatched and survived
and existed at the present time: Marrina,
now a member of the Canadian organization of adventurers called
Alpha Flight, and
the Plodex who was intended to be her mate, although she as
yet knew nothing of this other Plodex's existence, or even that
she herself was an alien. The Master was determined to destroy
both Marrina and her intended mate, in order to revenge himself
upon the Plodex for the torture he had suffered, and also to
thwart the Plodex plans for conquest of Earth through the Plodex
who hatched on Earth and survived. Therefore, the Master formulated
a plan to serve both these goals. He broadcast a hypnotic signal
that unleashed Marrina's submerged savage Plodex instincts temporarily,
and which forced her to come to the starship. The Master then
directed the starship's mechanisms to take her prisoner and
torture her (although not through the total destruction of her
body or of parts of it, as had happened to him). While she was
his prisoner, the Master informed her of her true, alien origin,
as well as of his own origin and goal of world conquest. The
other members of Alpha Flight came to her rescue and, as the
Master had intended, destroyed so much of the starship's mechanisms
that the Master was freed from the starship. When the starship
exploded, the Master was hurled into the icy arctic waters below.
He quickly swam to a large, fish-shaped submarine which he had
begun constructing from the starship's resources five thousand
years before. The Master had hoped that Marrina too would have
been destroyed, but she survived along with the rest of Alpha
Flight and their allies on the mission, the Invisible
Woman and Prince Namor the Sub-Mariner.
The Master found the other surviving member of the Plodex on
Earth, which had a monstrous form and was fully given over to
its instincts to kill and to dominate. The Master permitted
the creature to commit a series of murders in Canada as it studied
human beings, Earth's dominant life form. The Master knew that
eventually Alpha Flight, especially Marrina, would investigate
the killings. Indeed, the Alpha Flight member called Puck summoned
Marrina to search for the creature. As she approached the creature,
she was greatly affected by chemical stimuli it gave off, which
finally triggered her killer instincts once more. She returned
to attack Puck, and then battled the Sub-Mariner, her lover
who had followed her to Canada. The Master captured Namor, Puck,
and Marrina and took them to his submarine.
There Puck placed himself into a deathlike trance, having learned
to do so years ago in the Orient. Believing him dead, the Master
took Puck from the cylinder in which he was imprisoned. Reviving,
Puck freed Namor, and then wrested the Master's helmet from
his and hurled it against the glass facing of the tank holding
Marrina, damaging it. Namor them freed the still savage Marrina.
Puck had not known that the Master's helmet served as his control
link to the submarine and to all his installations, and was
physically joined to his flesh. By removing the Master's helmet,
Puck had unintentionally wreaked horrifying damage to the flesh
on the Master's head that it had covered. Now, according to
the Master, he could no longer control his vessel or the non-human
Plodex, which began wrecking the submarine's automatic systems
in its fury. Namor, Puck, and Marrina, who shortly thereafter
reverted to her normal human personality, all escaped. The submarine
exploded, and the non-human Plodex was apparently destroyed.
But Namor found no trace of the Master.
In reality, the submarine (due to its technology from the Plodex
ship) had placed the Master in suspended animation. Eventually,
the Master was freed. Later, he kidnapped Puck who was hospitalized
at the time in order to experiment on him in an effort to create
a mate for Marrina. Puck escaped, however, with the help of
Alpha Flight. At some point afterwords, the Master made himself
a new body using an enzyme taken from the villain Scramble.
Somehow, the Master discovered Alpha Flight leader James
Hudson in a dimension of null space after one of his supposed
deaths. The Master rebuilt Hudson's body, brainwashing him into
his slave and naming him the Antiguard. Using the alias Joshua
Lord, the Master sought to usurp control of the Canadian government
and reformed Omega Flight in an effort to help his cause. Attempting
to use Hudson against Alpha Flight, his plan failed when Hudson's
wife and teammate Vindicator managed to reach her husband and
he turned on the Master.
At a time when many of Earth's heroes appeared to have died
fighting the psychic menace known as Onslaught, the Master orchestrated
a breakout from the United States super-villain prison, the
Vault, by employing the U-Foes
to free the imprisoned criminals. A new hero team was forming,
Heroes for Hire, and the Master employed the hero Luke
Cage to be an inside source in the new team. Similarly,
he placed controls in the android brain of John Hammond, the
former Human Torch, who administered
the team. Ultimately, the Master's influence was revealed and
the Heroes for Hire stormed his headquarters with the help of
Cage and Hammond. The Master was forced to flee and remains
Height (estimated): 6 ft. 4 in.
Weight (estimated): 275 lbs.
Hair: Black with white streaks
Strength Level: The Master is a perfect physical specimen,
although he is not superhuman. He can lift (press) 800 pounds
with great effort.
Known Superhuman Powers: None, however, the Master is
virtually immortal, although he is not invulnerable. The white
streaks in his beard are the only outward sign of his aging.
As noted, he has been alive, either in his original body, as
a disembodied brain, or in his current body, for forty thousand
Other Abilities: The Master has a genius level intellect,
and, thanks to his former link to the Plodex ship computers,
holds most of the knowledge of the Plodex (as of forty thousand
years ago when the starship was launched) and of Earth humans
in his mind.
The Master also retains his knowledge of hand-to-hand combat
from his days as a tribesman forty thousand years ago. His
knowledge of how to manipulate pressure points on humanoid
bodies is so great that he has been able to use it to render
the superhuman strong Sub-Mariner unconscious, even though
he himself has no superhuman strength.