Lance Hunter

Lance HunterIn the upcoming Season 2 of Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. there will be a new guy joining Director Phil Coulson‘s team: Lance Hunter, portrayed by Nick Blood. It’s likely that Hunter will be called to fill in the empty space left by the treacherous Grant Ward, but since Ward is coming back at a certain point in the season, he’s unlikely to stay there forever. In the show, Hunter will be a British mercenary who joins the team just for the money, something that makes him quite different from his comics counterpart. It’s still unknown if Lance will be an agent of S.T.R.I.K.E. like in the comics, but it’s likely since the team has been introduced in The Winter Soldier: even in this case, however, it differs from the comics, since it’s more of a S.H.I.E.L.D. counter-terrorism black ops squad rather than an intelligence agency on its own. Anyway, let’s see together who Lance Hunter is in the comics.

Born and raised in Great Britain, Lance Hunter entered the Royal Navy with the firm intention of serving his country (and Her Majesty) the best he could. He quickly rose to the rank of Commander, becoming one of the most apreciated and trusted officers in the entire unit. When UNO created S.H.I.E.L.D., a counter-espionage agency clearly led by USA mainly, GB decided to create an analogue agency on its own, and founded S.T.R.I.K.E., the Special Tactical Reserve for International Key Emergencies. Because of his reputation and skills, Hunter was put at charge of the newborn agency; as the first director of S.T.R.I.K.E. ever, Hunter was able to prove he possessed the necessary skills to make a name for the agency, and to allow it to take care of GB’s security on its own, without the aid of foreigner nations. After many years of service, Hunter retired from the directorate, and the title passed on to Todd Radcliffe, a skilled intelligence officer. Just before leaving, Hunter had lancehuntercomics1been investigating on weird activities in the Dockland area, and some of his spies had reported to him that probably new Nazis were involved. He left to Radcliffe the job, but unfortunately the new director himself proved to be a Nazi, working for the war criminal Red Skull. When the Skull decided to reveal himself, he ordered Radcliffe to launch a massive bombing on S.T.R.I.K.E., an attack during which, apparently, the national hero Captain Britain and the US champion Captain America lost their lives. Hunter was called back to face the emergency, but when he arrived to confront Radcliffe, S.H.I.E.L.D. director Nick Fury had already killed him. Fury was in Britain with Captain America following the tracks of the Red Skull, and the two old spies decided to team up to stop the Nazi warlord. There was no time to mourn the fallen heroes (who were actually alive and well, feigning their death to hunt for the Skull undisturbed), and the spies immediately headed to the Docklands, finding the Skull’s base: finding himself spotted, the Nazi made his move, and kidnapped the Prime Minister James Callaghan, asking for his life, and the life of the millions he was threatening with a germ bomb, the entire Great Britain for himself.

Fury wanted to involve S.H.I.E.L.D., but Hunter believed that the interference of a foreigner power would have made things worse: he sedated his hot-blooded colleague, and went to the Parliament, telling everyone they had to chose between surrendering, thus buying time, or sacrificing the Prime Minister’s life to show to the Skull how absurd his demands were. The Parliament decided for the first option, and Hunter looked for the germ bomb during the hours lancehuntercomics2gained: he found it in the Big Ben, attached to the big hand of the clock. While Lance Hunter was trying to defuse the bomb, Fury launched an attack to the Red Skull’s base, leading the S.T.R.I.K.E. agents Hunter had entrusted him with. The Skull decided to counterattack, and teleported Lance Hunter and Captain Britain to his base: while Hunter still worked at the bomb, Cap fought the Skull. Nick Fury and Captain American intervened wearing jetpacks, and when Hunter declared he wasn’t able to defuse the bomb, the British heroes were taken away by the Americans, while the Skull escaped…but the bomb didn’t explode, since Fury’s attack on the Nazi base had damaged the computer sending the detonation signal. Fury and Captain America then came back to the States, while Hunter asked Captain Britain to join S.T.R.I.K.E., only to receive a refusal. Hunter led S.T.R.I.K.E. for years, then he left and was promoted to the rank of Commodore. He was put in charge of Armed Force of Paramilitary Response when W.H.O. disbanded, and created a lighter version of the Superhuman Registration Act for the Great Britain. When the Join Intelligence Chief Mortimer Grimsdale was exposed as a Skrull impostor, Hunter was called to take his place: as the JIC, Lance Hunter was now the head of the entire British intelligence, included MI5MI6 and MI16. So much power couldn’t find a better man for being exerted.

Lance Hunter is a serious and cold-blooded man, able to mantain his calm even in the most desperate situations. With a long experience in both the army and the intelligence, Hunter is a proficient spy and a superb leader, a skilled hand-to-hand combatant and a precise sniper; his field of expertise, however, are explosives, and, according to him, there’s never been a bomb able to resist him (an achievement the Red Skull promptly broke). Hunter controls the entire British intelligence, thus being one of the world’s most powerful men; he has at his disposal the most dangerous men and women in GB, but his moral uprightness prevents him from using them for everything but the security of Great Britain.

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