The Human Fly was a young man of unknown identity who was severely injured during a car crash. After a long hospitalization, including a number of reconstructive surgeries in which much of his skeleton was replaced by steel, he took on the masked identity of the Human Fly. As the Human Fly, he performed daredevil stunts to benefit various charities, especially those helping children with disabilities.
His activities often drew him into conflict with criminals, who were often seeking to rob the charity events at which he performed. Additionally, he drew the attention of Spider-Man, who thought he might be the villain who shared the same name.
The character was based on real-life stuntman Rick Rojatt. The comic book carried the tag line "The Wildest Super-Hero Ever — Because He's Real!", and photographs of someone in a Human Fly costume appeared in the books. Jim Shooter, Marvel's former editor-in-chief and a member of their editorial staff at the time of publication, said in a 2007 interview that the photos were indeed of Rojatt.