Monday, August 3, 2015

1970's Flashback: The Manhunter

Although an original concept dating back to the golden age The Manhunter (with the same civilian identity of Paul Kirk) was revived in 1973 by Archie Goodwin and Walt Simonson as a back-up feature running through Detective Comics #437 [“The Himalayan Incident”] and ending with #443. While lying in suspended animation, as the result of a mortal wound suffered during a safari; an organization known as the Council had genetically altered the Manhunter to enhance his healing ability. Decades passed before the Council revived the Manhunter from suspended animation and trained him to lead a branch of warriors who were actually cloned versions of the Manhunter himself. The training involved intensive exercises in various forms of fighting such as martial arts and armed combat. The Manhunter was also updated with a different costume and various weapons. He later learned that the Council was the true threat to humanity and chose to oppose them.
[Detective Comics #437, Oct-Nov. 1973]
After the Manhunter eventually escaped from the Council and waged an on-going conflict with them he acquired some allies such as the Batman and some others. In a final showdown Paul Kirk, the Batman and their allies invaded Council headquarters and defeated their forces. One of the Coucil members managed to fire a fatal burst of intense radiation at the Manhunter. As he lay dying, the Manhunter used the Council member's own psionic helmet to destroy the organization’s headquarters killing himself, his clones, and all of the Council members. 

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