Armek

armekfilmNo new characters in this week’s episode of Supergirl either, but the promo for the next one gives us a look at a new villain. As we just learnt, M’gann has been tracked down on Earth by her fellow White Martians, and in The Martian Chronicles (Rady Bradbury approves the title) they will find her…at least, one of them will: meet Armek, the bigger and badder White Martian seen so far. Portrayed by Terrell Tilford, Armek will attack M’gann to punish her for her betrayal, and he’ll also infiltrate the DEO using his shapeshifting abilities to hide himself, creating somewhat of a The Thing dynamic. Quite oddly, in the comics Armek is never seen in his original White Martian form, preferring his disguised one, while in the show we’ll see plenty of him. Anyway, let’s take a look at the original guy.

The alien later known as Armek was born on planet Ma’aleca’andra, the one humans would have called Mars centuries later. He was a White Martian, member of a species of feral and brutal warlords; the White Martians coexisted with the Green Martians on the same planet, but their ways and natures were extremely different, as the green ones were peaceful philosophers and scientists, while the whites only dedicated to war and conflict. A civil war started on Mars between the two races, and at the end of it the White Martians were defeated: most of their kind ended up being exiled in the Still Zone, an extradimensional prison, while some of them managed to escape the persecution following the defeat and left Ma’aleca’andra. Armek was among the ones who never enter the Still Zone, and along with other survivors he found refuge in an unknown corner of the galaxy, waiting for a chance to make a return and enjoy once again the flames of war. Said chance arrived when Armek’s White Martian group discovered Earth, the closest planet to Mars, now inhabited by an evolved but weak species, armekcomics1and hosting even the last surviving Green Martian. Aiming to conquer the blue planet, the White Martians created a vanguard and sent it to Earth to start the invasion from within, using decepiton on the population to eliminate the greatest threat to their forces, the remarkable number of superheroes protecting the world. Armek was chosen to be part of the team, and he joined seven other warriors in the mission: they changed their shapes, adopting the forms they believed earthlings would have associated to superheroes, and they chose different codenames for themselves. Making their debut as the Hyperclan, the Martians announced to Earth that they were a group of alien refugees, escaping from a world destroyed by an ecological disaster caused by their reckless misuse of environment: they wanted to prevent Earth to follow the same path of their world, and put themselves at humans’ service to achieve this goal. Humans initially welcomed them with suspicion, but after a few heroic deeds the Hyperclan was universally recognised as a superhero team by everyone…but the new Justice League of America.

Chosing as a base the ancient Martian fortress Z’onn Z’orr in Antarctica, the Hyperclan also used telepathy and brainwash on the population to make them see as heroes, and to turn them against the JLA in the same time. Plus, they also used their powers to accomplish great deeds, such as when Armek made the Sahara Desert bloom with plants and flowers, thus obtaining even more trust from the public opinion. When the JLA gave form to their suspicion it was too late: Hyperclan had released a virus that affected all the fire-manipulators on the planet, making them lose their powers, and even attacked the Justice League’s satellite, causing the death of Metamorpho. During their first confrontation, the people were rooting for the Hyperclan. Armek himself confronted two of the League’s heavy-hitters, The Flash and Green Lantern, but despite fighting alongside his teammates Züm and Zenturion he was defeated, since he possessed old data and believed that Green Lantern’s power ring was still useless against the color yellow; turning his massive armor yellow didn’t help him, and he was parted from his group armekcomics2long enough to allow the Martian Manhunter to transform into him and to take his place. The battle, however, ended on the Hyperclan’s favor, as they ultimately defeated the entire league, taking everyone captive…everyone but Batman, whom they didn’t consider a threat since he was a simple human. This proved to be a grave mistake, as Batman was first able to correctly deduce their true nature by observing their fear of fire, then to infiltrate their fortress and free his teammates. In the final battle, Armek battled The Flash and Green Lantern again, but this time it was easier for them to defeat him: using his superspeed, Flash trapped Armek in a ring of fire, while Lantern knocked him out with one of his energy constructs. While Superman told the world the truth about the Hyperclan, Martian Manhunter used his telepathy on Armek and the others, erasing their memories, blocking their powers and convincing them they were humans. After that, Armek started a normal life as a human being, completely unaware of his true nature.

Armek is a blood-thirsty warrior, a warmonger who enjoys only battles and the destruction they cause. As all White Martians, he’s extremely strong, durable and fast, he can fly, he posesses enhanced senses and reflexes, he can use telekinesis and telepathy, he can regenerate even from serious wounds, and his body allows him to change shape, form, color and even density; while pretending to be a robotic giant, he only uses his invulnerability, super-strenght and color-changing abilities, but he obviously can use his other powers when the situation requires it. A strong and determined invader, Armek seeks always new conflicts and new tests for his strength, and he’ll never stop as long as there are worlds to conquer.

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