Doctor Demonicus (Marvel)
Real Name: Douglas Birely
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Doctor Demonicus does not actually employ any kind of powers. He usually empowers or equips others to battle for him.
Douglas Birely was a geneticist studying the mutagenic properties of radiation at a private research company in California. Reading of the growing number of human beings who had gained superhuman abilities through exposure to radiation, Birely asked his employer for permission to subject himself to the radiation they were using in their tests on animals, and was refused. Undaunted, he staged a laboratory accident during which he was exposed to the experimental radiation. To his chagrin, he did not acquire any superhuman powers, but instead contracted skin cancel. An official investigation of the incident revealed Birely's sabotage and he was fired from the company.
Jobless, Birely learned of a highly radioactive meteor which had recently fallen near the Aleutian Islands and used his savings to charter a boat to the site. Unearthing the huge meteorite, which he named the Lifestone, Birely acquired funds from some as yet unrevealed source in Japan and set up a laboratory in the Aleutian Islands. He then perfected a process by which to artificially mutate animals into huge, monstrous organisms. His first successful creation was Batragon, mutated from a bat.
Birely soon fashioned himself a bodysuit that inhibited the effects of the skin cancer eating away at his body, and adopted the identity of Doctor Demonicus. He then recruited a small army of criminals, mercenaries, and derelicts to assist him, and used them to enslave the Eskimos native to his island base. Demonicus put the Eskimos to work constructing a transport craft made from the meteoric ore of the Lifestone. Because his monsters required periodic contact with the Lifestone to retain their vitality, it was necessary to mobilize the meteor in order to expand the range in which his monsters could operate. Demonicus planned to roam the globe with his creations, using them to plunder and pillage.
Unfortunately for Demonicus, the world security agency S.H.I.E.L.D. learned of his operation while tracking down the mutated dinosaur known as Godzilla. As Godzilla battled Demonicus's creations, Ghilaron, Lepirax, and Centipor, S.H.I.E.L.D. liberated the enslaved Eskimos and captured Demonicus's troops. Demonicus himself was subdued by S.H.I.E.L.D. agent Gabriel Jones, but managed to escape before he could be tried for his crimes, with the help of Maur-Kon, a member of the alien race called the Myndai. Maur-Kon, a "scientist-sorcerer" dedicated to fomenting chaos, provided Demonicus with a huge satellite headquarters orbiting the moon, and the technology necessary to accomplish Demonicus's next scheme, bombarding the Earth with huge meteors
Aboard his space station, Dr. Demonicus mutated new genetic monsters and constructed robotic ones from Maur-Kon's designs. These he unleashed upon the Earth in preparation for his meteor attack. These monsters, Starchild, Cerberus, and the Hand of Five, were met in combat by the Shogun Warriors, three huge robots constructed by the ancestral enemies of the Myndai and piloted by human beings. The Shogun Warriors managed to defeat their monstrous foes, thwart the meteor attack, destroy Demonicus's space station and take him back to Earth. There Demonicus was taken into custody by S.H.I.E.L.D. Turned over to local authorities in California, Demonicus escaped with the help of some of his men. He has since been trying to rebuild his base of operations and create an army of monsters with which to plunder the world. The West Coast Avengers learned of his activities and battled one of his genetic monsters.
Birely later escaped, with help from his previous henchmen, and eventually recovered a fragment of the Lifestone and procured more scientific equipment. He soon created his own brand of superhuman villains from kidnapped victims and willing henchmen. Dubbing them the Pacific Overlords, their criminal activity alerted the superhero team Avengers. The Avengers were captured by the Overlords as Birely put his master plan in action: causing a new volcanic island to rise from the ocean floor, an island that he declares the nation of Demonica. In addition, Birely had won United Nations membership for Demonica through hasty diplomacy and a promise to share Demonica's considerable mineral wealth with the world. Since Demonica was now sovereign territory, Birely ordered the Avengers to leave.
Soon afterward, however, Birely fell under the influence of the demon Raksasa through unknown reasons, and was driven mad. Birely renounced his ties to the United Nations, made his Pacific Overlord in to mind-controlled slaves, and recruited criminals as his new country's citizens, including the super-criminals Zvezda Dennista and Klaw, the latter being made vice-president of Demonica. The Overlord known as Kuroko escaped to elicit the aid of the Avengers, but was retrieved by Zvezda Dennista and Klaw before the Avengers could act.
On Birely's orders, the Pacific Overlords began capturing aircraft that flew too close to Demonica. The Avengers, acting on behalf of the United Nations, infiltrated Demonica, eventually revealing Raksasa's influence. The Avengers persuaded the villains of Demonica to rebel, and they collectively succeed in preventing Raksasa and his demon hordes from invading Earth. At the end of the battle, Demonica sunk into the ocean taking Birely, the Pacific Overlords and Klaw down with it. The Avengers escaped with Zvezda Dennista, the civilian hostages and most of the citizens of Demonica.
First Appearance: Godzilla (1977) #4
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View a chronological listing of this character's appearances
All-New Official Handbook of the Marvel Universe A to Z (2006)
Avengers Unconquered (2009)
#22 Avengers West Coast (1989)
- 'The Final Battle!'#24
- 'The Hordes Of Hellfire!'#28
- 'Fall Of The Avengers!'
#70 Dark Reign Files (2009)
- 'The Pacific Overlords, Part One: The Big One!'#71
- 'The Pacific Overlords, Part Two: Pax Demonicus'#72
- 'The Pacific Overlords, Part Three: Chaos and Chrysanthemums'#73
- 'The Pacific Overlords, Part Four: Demonica Rising'#74
- 'The Pacific Overlords, Part Five: Operation Overlords'#93
- 'Demonica Calling !!'#94
- 'Personal Demons'#95
- 'Demonica, Mon Amour'
Dark Reign: The Cabal (2009)
Dark Reign: The Hood (2009)
#1 Godzilla (1977)
- 'Family Man'
#4 Iron Man (1968)
- 'Godzilla Versus Batragon!'#5
- 'The Isle of Lost Monsters'
New Avengers (2005)
Official Handbook of the Marvel Universe A to Z (2008)
HC vol. 03 Secret Invasion (2008)
- 'Captain (Nextwave) to Elements of Doom'TPB vol. 03
- 'Captain (Nextwave) to Elements of Doom'
Shogun Warriors (1979)
#12 Star-Lord (2017)
- 'The Moon Menace!'#13
- 'The Demonicus Scheme!'#14
- 'Should Heroes Fail...'
#5 The Marvel Encyclopedia (2006)
- 'Earth-Lord Part Five: The Heist'
HC The New Avengers: Most Wanted Files (2006)
- 'The Marvel Encyclopedia'
The Official Handbook of the Marvel Universe Deluxe Edition (1985)
The Official Handbook of the Marvel Universe: Master Edition (1990)
Hood's Criminal Syndicate (Marvel)
Pacific Overlords (Marvel)
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