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A demon of great mystical power, Nightmare usually targets his victims while they sleep by drawing their psyches into his Nightmare World, the substance and contents of which he can manipulate and reshape at will. He can trap psyches indefinitely but usually only torments souls temporarily lest he permanently deplete the psychic energies he consumes. While inside his own realm, Nightmare is virtually omnipotent; however, he is less powerful and more vulnerable when he manifests outside his kingdom, and was particularly diminished when he assumed mortal form as Edvard Haberdash.
Ruler of his own Nightmare World within the Dream Dimension (linked to and shaped by humanity's collective unconscious), Nightmare is a Class Three demon who influences the dreams of living beings as they sleep, feeding on humanity's psychic energies in particular. Nightmare occasionally singles out souls for special tortures, sometimes trapping their dream-selves in his realm. He has even sought to absorb the entire waking world into his own realm, though never with lasting success. Humanity's chief defender against Nightmare is the sorcerer Doctor Strange, who has fought the demon so often that Strange routinely casts a protective spell on himself before sleeping.
Nightmare has also faced many other foes such as Clea, Spider-Man, the Micronauts, Dazzler, Ghost Rider (John Blaze and Dan Ketch), the Hulk, Cloak & Dagger, Excalibur, Daredevil, Straw Man, Doctor Doom, Wolverine, Sleepwalker, the Enchantress, Heimdall, Morbius, Emma Frost, Captain America, Black Panther and Moon Knight. Nightmare has worked to corrupt unstable super-beings such as the Hulk and Cloak, each of whom have gone on mad Nightmare-inspired rampages, but his influence usually proves temporary. For a time, Nightmare was allied with rival fear-sowing entities such as the Fear Lords, but the group was thwarted by Dr. Strange and his allies.
Eight hundred years ago, Nightmare impregnated the demon succubus Zhilla Char; she died giving birth to their daughter, the Dreamqueen, who now rules her own nightmarish pocket dimension. For a time, Nightmare courted horror movie actress Roxanne in the mortal guise of Edvard Haberdash, helping her longtime director Lucre establish Club Fear where patrons paid to be terrified. "Edvard" eventually caused Lucre's demise, and Roxanne forced herself to keep dating the abusive, possessive, inhuman "Edvard" since she feared for her own safety and that of the world in the face of a wrathful Nightmare's power. During a recent terror attack, Nightmare exploited humanity's desire that it was just a dream, gaining a foothold on an earthly island where he can manipulate reality at whim. On Nightmare Island, the Hulk encountered and named Daydream, a daughter Nightmare had sired with a mortal woman in a deep sleep, who turned against her father and chose to dwell amongst humanity. Nightmare's natural enemies include the denizens of the hostile adjacent Realm of Madness, as well as the Gulgol, a monster who never sleeps.
First Appearance: Strange Tales (1951) #110
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View a chronological listing of this character's appearances
Alpha Flight (1983)
#67 Avengers: The Initiative (2007)
- 'The Ties That Bind'#70
- '...Is But a Dream Within a Dream.'
Black Panther (1998)
#21 Captain America (1998)
#10 Chaos War (2010)
- 'American Nightmare, Chapter Two: The Growing Darkness'#11
- 'American Nightmare, Chapter Three: Finger on the Pulse'#12
- 'American Nightmare, Finale: Nuclear Dawn'
Chaos War: Ares (2011)
Dark Avengers (2009)
Dark Reign Files (2009)
#4 Deadpool Team-Up (2010)
- 'Here Nightmares Abide!'#5
- 'Tell Joey I Love Him!'
#899 Deathlok (1991)
- 'Merc With A Myth'
#1 Docteur Strange (1979)
- 'Almost a Good Idea...'
#5/6 Doctor Extraño (1994)
- 'Tous mes reves contre moi'
#4 Doctor Strange (1968)
- 'Pesadilla en Bleecker Street'
#170 Doctor Strange (1974)
- 'To Dream -- Perchance to Die!'#180
- 'Eternity, Eternity'#181
- 'If a World Should Die Before I Wake...'#182
- 'And Juggernaut Makes Three!'
#10 Doctor Strange, Sorcerer Supreme (1988)
- 'Alone Against Eternity...'#13
- 'Planet Earth Is No More!'#32
- 'The Dream Weaver!'#33
- 'All My Dreams Against Me'#34
- 'A Midsummer's Nightmare!'#50
- 'The Cat & the Cataclysm'#52
- 'Land of the Pharohs'
Annual 02 Doctor Voodoo: Avenger of the Supernatural (2009)
- 'The Return of The Defenders Part 4'#21
- 'Mindless in Manhattan'#31
- 'A Gauntlet Hurled!'#32
- 'Silver-Tongued Devil'#33
- 'The Alexandria Quatrain'#38
- 'Fear Itself'#39
- 'The Fear That Kills!'#40
- 'From Hope and Fear Set Free...'#52
- 'Field of Bad Dreams'#53
- 'Nightmare on Bleecker Street'#79
- 'Farewell, Nightmare Music'#81
- 'Earthquake Logic: Tectonic Shift'
Essential X-Men (1995)
#29 Fantastic Four: True Story (2008)
- 'Dream A Little Dream'#118
- 'New year's Evil'#119
- 'Preludes & Nightmares'
#2 Fred Hembeck Destroys the Marvel Universe (1989)
- 'Grimm's Fairytales'#3
- 'Total Nightmare'#4
- 'Johnny Storm Saves Books'
Generation X (1994)
#20 Ghost Rider (1973)
- 'Bodies In Motion'#22
- 'All Hallows Eve'#26
#77 Ghost Rider (1990)
- 'Ghost Rider... Unleashed?'#78
- 'The Empire of Sleep!'
#11 Giant-Size Marvel Triple Action (1975)
- 'Through a Nightmare Revealed...'#30
- 'Nightmares of Truth'
Guardians Of The Galaxy (1990)
Hämähäkkimies / Spider-Man (1980)
Hercules: Fall of an Avenger (2010)
Heroic Age: Villains (2011)
#1 Incredible Hercules (2008)
- 'Heroic Age Villains'
#118 Journey Into Mystery (1952)
- 'Dream Time Part Two Of Sacred Invasion'
L'incroyable Hulk (1968)
#158/159 Licht & Schatten (1988)
- 'Nous voila devant d`etranges journees!'
#5 Magik (2000)
- 'Der Rattenkönig von New York'
#1 Marvel Comics Presents (1988)
- 'The Crossing Guard'
Marvel Fanfare (1982)
Marvel Knights (2000)
#8 Marvel Limited: Fantastic Firsts (1994)
- 'Dark Matters'#9
- 'Final Matters'
Marvel Premiere (1972)
#3 Marvel Swimsuit Special (1992)
- 'While the World Spins Mad!'#12
- 'Portal to the Past!'
Marvel Tales (1964)
#134 Marvel Zombies: The Book of Angels, Demons & Various Monstrosities (2007)
- 'The Ghost That Haunted Octopus!'
#29 Morbius: The Living Vampire (1992)
- 'To Sleep ... Perchance to Dream!'
#8 Munden's Bar (Webcomic) (2007)
- 'The Algebra of Need'#9
- 'Dreaming Realities'
#9 Nightmare (1994)
- 'The Winding Way, Part 3: Swamp Gothic'#10
- 'The Winding Way, Part 4: Wicked Things'#11
- 'The Winding Way, Conclusion'
#1 Official Handbook of the Marvel Universe A to Z (2008)
- 'Nightmare, a killer of a love story part 1 of 4: Temptation'#2
- 'Nightmare, a killer of a love story part 2 of 4: Fear Sells'#3
- 'Nightmare, a killer of a love story part 3: My Dream Is Your Nightmare'#4
- 'Club Fear!!'
Over the Edge (1995)
#12 Sleepy's/Hulk Custom Comic (2008)
- 'Dark Dreams and Darker Schemes!'
Spectacular Spider-Man Adventures (1995)
#115 Spider-Island: Cloak & Dagger (2011)
- 'Spidey's Worst Nightmare'
Stan Lee Meets Dr. Strange (2006)
Strange Tales (1951)
Strange Tales (1987)
Strange Tales (2004)
N/A Strange Tales (Faksimile) (1999)
- 'Dr. Strange Master of the Mystic arts'
The Avengers (UK) (1973)
The Incredible Hulk (1968)
#297 The Incredible Hulk (2000)
- 'Sleep, My Child...'#298
- 'Strange Days Have Found Us!'#360
#81 The Marvel Encyclopedia (2006)
- 'Tempest Fugit, Conclusion'
HC The Marvel Masterpieces Collection (1993)
- 'The Marvel Encyclopedia'
The Mighty World Of Marvel (2009)
The Official Handbook of the Marvel Universe (1983)
#3 The Official Handbook of the Marvel Universe Deluxe Edition (1985)
- 'C-D: From The Collector to Dracula'#8
- 'N-P: From Namorita to Pyro'
#3 The Official Handbook of the Marvel Universe: Horror 2005 (2005)
- 'Cloak to Doctor Octopus'#9
- 'Molecule Man to Owl'
The Sensational Spider-Man (1996)
#-1 Thor (1966)
- 'Here There Be Monsters!'
Web of Spider-Man (1985)
#7 What If? (1977)
- 'Welcome...To My Nightmare!'
#40 Wolverine Halloween Special Edition (1993)
- 'What If...Dr. Strange Had Never Become Master of the Mystic Arts?'
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