U. S. ARCHER

Real Name: Ulysses Solomon Archer

Identity/Class: Human mutate

Occupation: Cargo transporter;
    formerly space pilot;
    formerly trucker

Group Membership: None;
    formerly Star Stop

Affiliations: US1/Star Rig (partner); Al the Alien and his Alien brethrenBig Enilwen, Deadpool, Taryn O'Connell, Louise Grant Mason, Poppa Wheelie, Razorback, Retread, Rocket Raccoon, She-Hulk, Wide Load Annie;
    formerly Short Stop;
    Chicken Colonel, Jobber, V'g'l'g'l'g'l'g'lanians (former employers);

Enemies: Baron von Blimp and his neo-nazis, Clutch, Grab & LeGreed, Highwayman, Iron Mike, Killer Raccoons, Skrulls, Spragg the Living Hill, Stone Clones, Vuk ("Medusa" D'Bari), Xartans, Xemnu the Titan;
    formerly Midnight (Mary McGrill)

Known Relatives: Mary McGrill Archer (Midnight, wife), Jefferson Hercules Archer (Highwayman, brother), unidentified child; mother and father (Archers, deceased);
    raised after his parents' deaths by Ed "Poppa Wheelie" and Anne "Wide Load Annie" Wheeler;

Aliases: "US", Ace

Base of Operations: mobile throughout the USA;
    formerly Star Stop; mobile throughout the Universe;
    formerly just the Short Stop and surrounding USA

Education: College graduate, unspecified degrees in computer program design, electronics engineering, others

First Appearance: U. S. 1#1 (May, 1983)

 

 

Powers/Abilities: US has a large metal implant in his skull which enables him to pick up Citizen's Band (CB) transmissions--his "CB Skull."  He can also use it to control his own truck/ship, US1, intercept other forms of communication, manipulate other electronic equipment, and resist certain forms of mind control.  The plate protects him from injury and is painful when struck by others.  In addition, he is one of the best truckers to ever burn rubber down the highway, and he's an excellent starship pilot, too.

U.S. 1 was a fast and powerful tractor-trailer rig.  It had had numerous modifications, enabling the cab, when unhitched from the trailer, to keep pace with any other road vehicle, including suped-up motorcycles.  Of course, it had the usual amenities--bucket seats, stereo, tape deck, CB set.  It also had a number of special features, including a radar tracking device, the ability to generate an oil slick, tire-shredding shrapnel bombs (which quickly biodegradable, so that it wouldn't hurt the wrong person), smoke screen, homing devices, weather satellite hook-up, and, of course, the ejection seat. The "special weapons" console could roll back into the dashboard, so it would appear to be a normal cab.
It also has a lightweight robot drive system, enabling it to drive under remote control.  Prior to learning to control U.S. 1 with his CB Skull, US used a remote control device which appeared to be a normal silver dollar. Later, U.S. 1 was further advanced by the Aliens, enabling it to fly through the air or in the vacuum of space, becoming the Star Rig.

U.S. 1#7 was narrated by the truck U.S. 1 itself demonstrating its sentience, although it was incapable of any independent action, being dependent on US1 to physically or remotely control it.

Height: 6'1"
Weight: 200 lbs.
Eyes: Blue
Hair: Blond

History:
(U.S. 1#1 (fb)/6(fb)/11(fb)) - Ulysses Solomon (US) was the younger of two sons of a pair of truck drivers.  He idolized his older brother, Jefferson, and thought he let him win in contests to make him feel better.  However, Jefferson was too humiliated to admit that his baby brother could beat him at everything.  Even in school, Jefferson had to work like crazy to get passing grades, while US was a top student with minimal effort.  US wanted to become a truck driver, but his parents insist he get a good education.
When their parents were killed in a wreck, the two brothers were informally adopted by Poppa Wheelie and Wide Load Annie, the owners of the Short Stop, a truck stop that their parents had frequented.  Jefferson took a job as a truck driver, so that US, could go to college (and then drive a truck).  Jefferson resented having to give up his dreams, and this resentment turned into hatred.  US was quarterback of his college's football team and he graduated Magna cum Laude.  He ended up with degrees in Computer Program Design, Electronics Engineering, all kinds of things...

(U.S. 1#11 (fb)-BTS) - A group of aliens came to Earth, seeking to recruit people to become starship pilots.  They chose truckers, because of their experience with the solitude of the open road, much like that of space.  Led by Al, they attempted to recruit the prodigious US but (since all humans look alike to them) recruited Jefferson instead.  They outfitted his truck with advanced technology and trained him in its use.
Jefferson worried that the Aliens were not satisfied with his performance and was afraid that they would eventually realize their mistake.  He decided to keep some distance between he and his brother, to prevent them from discovering the truth.  To this end, he decided to try to convince US he was dead.  He established the identity of the Highwayman and named his truck the Blackrig.

(U.S. 1#1(fb)/11(fb)) - After college, US shared a truck ride with Jefferson, but they were suddenly run off the road by the Blackrig (actually the Blackrig was under Jefferson's control, with a mannequin/dummy in the driver's seat).  The truck went over a cliff and crashed--US was badly injured but maintained consciousness long enough to see the Highwayman apparently with a band of  demons mocking him from atop the cliff.  Jefferson's body was never found, but he was believed by most to have died.
The demons were, in fact, Federation agents for the Aliens, who had finally begun to suspect their mistake and sent the agents to contact US.  The agents took US to a hospital, where they saved his life--replacing parts of his shattered skull with a type of metal that allowed him to pick up CB transmissions.
Nonetheless, the Aliens were reluctant to throw away all of their years of training. Jefferson persuaded them to let him prove that he was US's superior.

(U.S. 1#1(fb)) - After recovering, US returned to the Short Stop, where he designed and built US1, a suped-up rig, to say the least.

(U.S. 1 #1) - Months later, US, believing Jefferson to be a prisoner of the Highwayman, went back out on the road in search of the man who stole his brother.  The Highwayman, in the Blackrig, ambushed US, trying to push he and his new, suped-out truck, US1, off the road.  US instead managed to drive the Blackrig over the edge of a cliff, but it never hit bottom and no wreckage was found.

(U.S. 1#2-BTS) - The Highwayman sent Midnight to attack US.  She took control of him with her Hypno-Whip, but he convinced her to grant him a last request: a stick of gum.  He put the whole thing in his mouth, foil and all, and the metal interacted with his CB Skull to enable him to fight off her control.  She fled on her cycle and escaped.

(U.S. 1#3) - Posing as an elderly trucker, the Highwayman related a tale of the demonic origins of the Highwayman.  The man took off suddenly and US followed him but was attacked by laser shooting trucks and bomb-dropping blimps--all agents of the Highwayman.  US managed to evade the attacks and continued after the old man, thinking him a victim of the attacks, as well.  When US finally caught up to him, the old man allowed his disguise to slip off, revealing him to be the Highwayman, before escaping in the Blackrig.

(U.S. 1#4) - The Highwayman sent Baron von Blimp to challenge US1 to a race, hoping to disgrace him.  The race involved a contest of transporting chickens for the Great Chicken Colonel.  US defeated von Blimp despite his cheating (and bomb dropping).

(U.S. 1#5) - US found that he had actually taken second in the preceding contest, having lost to his friendly rival, Taryn "Taryn Down the Highway" O'Connel.  The Colonel allowed a second contest between US and Taryn.  However, US's trip was interrupted by the Aliens who ran him through a gigantic maze.  This was all a test arranged by Al the Alien who used it to confirm his suspicions regarding US.  However, Al instead pretended that his ship had broken down and that he needed the chicken parts US was hauling to restore the organic-integrated technology.  Al then flew US1 through the air, enabling US to win the race (which he would have done without the interference, of course!).

(U.S. 1#6) - US took Wide Load Annie on a haul for Jobber, which brought them to Peaceful Vista, a small town under the tyrannical thumb of Iron Mike, King of the Bike.  US, US1, and Wide Load defeated and embarrassed Iron Mike and sent him running, but Midnight then hypnotized Wide Load.

(U.S. 1#7 ) - Midnight took control of the others at the Short Stop and then challenged US to a race to redeem her earlier defeat.  US again defeated her, learning how to use his CB Skull to remotely control US1 in the process.  He freed the others from her control and blew up her motorcycle.

(U.S. 1#8) - Along with everyone else at the Short Stop, US mistakenly believed Taryn O' Connel to be Midnight, and he chased her down and captured her.  However, he was then confronted by the real Midnight.

(U.S. 1#9) - US and the group at Short Stop fought Midnight, as well as Baron von Blimp and his neo-nazis.  US learned to use his CB Skull to control Midnight's whip, and Taryn unmasked her as Mary.  They were all then confronted by the Highwayman, who revealed Mary to have been an innocent pawn, mesmerized by him.

(U.S. 1#10) - The Highwayman challenged US to vie for supremacy of the highways (and all that that entails).  The Aliens decided that things had gone far enough and tried to take matters into their own tentacles.  Jefferson fled in the Blackrig, drawing US after him.  After proving he could resist any of US1's attacks, he stopped the Blackrig and revealed his identity.

(U.S. 1#11) - Jefferson began to explain himself, but when he saw that the Aliens had followed, he flew into a desperate rage and attacked US, trying to strangle him.  The Aliens subdued him and brought both Archers and their rigs back to the Short Stop.  US believed that the Aliens had manipulated Jefferson and turned him into the Highwayman.  They explained their goals, and their mistaking Jefferson for US.  In turn, Jefferson explained to US how he did really hate him; it wasn't just the Aliens manipulating him.  The Aliens then arranged a final contest between US and Jefferson.

(U.S. 1#12) - The Aliens altered the two vehicles, the Blackrig and US1, and sent the two brothers off in a race around the world.  The race started on the road, took to the air, and ended up in space.  US1 took to space flight better than Jefferson, taking the lead, as a result.  Furious, and refusing to lose again, Jefferson attempted to ram US and kill them both.  However, US managed to dodge, and Jefferson panicked and crashed the Blackrig into the Moon.  The Aliens transported Jefferson to safety before the crash.
US was chosen as victor, and Al revealed the secret of their actions: "What the Universe really needs are truckers!  Why sure!  Men of courage and intelligence who are strong-willed and independent!  Men who could stand up to the rigors, and most especially the solitude, of space!"  US and most of the crew of the Short Stop (and the Short Stop itself) were transported into space, where they reformed as the Star Stop, and US cruised the cosmos in his trusty rig.

(Longshot I#2 - BTS) - Archer paid Earth a visit (or took a job that led him to Earth).

BTS - US married Mary McGrill, and she became pregnant not too long afterwards.

(Sensational She-Hulk I#6-BTS, 7) - US took a job shipping condensed lithium blocks to the V'g'l'g'l'g'l'g'lanians.  His mind was taken over and US1 was stolen by Xemnu the Titan, who crashed it through the dome surrounding the Star Stop.  Xemnu sought the child of US and Mary as the first of a group of children to repopulate his planet.  Xemnu was defeated by the Aliens, who homed in on the distress signal from US's ship, now called the Star Rig.  Al and US rebuilt a flying, temporarily space worthy, 1959 Dodge for the She-Hulk enabling her to return home.  She had been brought to the Star Stop when she followed Razorback and Taryn, who had sought to be reunited with US.

(Sensational She-Hulk I#40 (fb) - BTS) - The Star Stop was assaulted by the Stone Clones.

(Sensational She-Hulk I#39-46) - US and Al tried in vain to drive off the Stone Clones.  Al reactivated the space travel abilities of She-Hulk's Dodge, bringing her and her friend, Louise Mason, back to their sector of space.  She-Hulk joined them and helped fight Spragg.  Ultimately US used the Star Rig to drop a metal net onto Spragg, eliminating his mental powers and thus "deactivating" the Stone Clones.
    She-Hulk then defeated Xemnu, who had escaped and returned.  Then she, US, Retread, and Weezi set out to rescue Razorback and Taryn from the Asparagus people (the D'Bari, an extra-terrestrial race).  They were first captured by the shapechanging Skrulls, but they convinced the aliens to send She-Hulk down to the planet.  US and the others remained in space with the Skrulls, until She-Hulk was captured and then met an Ovoid, learning his mind-switching technique, in the process. Shulkie tried it and ended up instead swapping physical builds and powers with Weezie.
    US, Retread, Weezie, and the Skrulls teleported planetside, freed She-Hulk, Taryn, Razorback, the Ovoid, and Rocket Raccoon, and then fled as Vuk set off a petrification effect.  The former prisoners explained that the "D'Bari" were actually Xartans (The Carbon Copy Men,yet another extra-terrestrial race  from Journey into Mystery#90), posing as D'Bari to hide out from the Skrulls, who wanted to annihilate them for "infringing on their franchise."
Make sense?  No?  Too bad!  Go buy and read the issues--boatload of fun!

(Annihilators#1/2) - US "Ace" Archer gave Rocket Raccon a lift to Planet X in a cargo spaceship along Deep Space Route 65, using a teleport to beam him down to the planet.

(Deadpool Team-Up II#896 (fb) - BTS) - Archer's special space-truck was repossessed by the Shi'ar. He made his way back to Earth to Florida seeking trucking jobs.

(Deadpool Team-Up II#896 (fb)) - US was able to secure a high-paying but secret job, but needed a partner. Just then, Deadpool fell through the roof. Desperate for money, US took him on, but the mercenary's chattering on the C.B. radio while on the road annoyed him incredibly.

(Deadpool Team-Up II#896) - Killer Raccoons attacked the two-truck convoy. US was able to destroy some of them using special weaponry incorporated into his rig. Inspecting Deadpool's demolished truck, he found that the cargo comprised hyperspace combustion manifolds, which were needed to make Earth vehicles spaceworthy. US hoped to roam the stars again, but Deadpool unwittingly caused the trucks to explode. US later confronted his brother, who admitted that he had hired the Killer Raccoons to steal the cargo and claim the insurance. The Highwayman offered US a job driving smuggled souls through hell; US gave it serious consideration to be rid of Deadpool.

(New Avengers III#7) - Seeking a career change, US applied for the job of nanny for the child of Luke Cage and Jessica Jones, but didn't get it.

Comments: Created by Al Milgrom and Herb Trimpe.

I'll tell you what. The series "US1" was pretty goofy, but it is definitely a fun read.  I bet you could find the whole series for a few bucks if you know where to look.  As far as goofy books go, I much prefer this series over the closest second in the goofy-category--NFL Superpro.  Sorry, Cisco!

An addendum from Noguei9@aol.com:
Concerning U.S. ARCHER, on page 4 of The Deadly Foes of Spider-Man#4 (August 1991) we can see the truck U.S. 1 in the background of the fight between the two factions of the sinister syndicate in NEW YORK city.
This issue was published between Sensational She-Hulk#6-7 and #39-46 when U.S. 1 was supposed to be the star Rig. Maybe it was a job on earth for ARCHER and the truck can change back to his old appearance.
And surely we can say that AL MILGROM doesn't forget a character he created.

Magna cum Laude, "With Great Honors," is often thought to mean the best level of accomplishment.  While it is impressive, Summa cum Laude, "With Highest Honors," is the highest of the three (the other being cum Laude, "With Honors").  I bet if Milgrom knew that, he would have had US be a Summa.  Then again, the book was about the exciting world of trucking: What do you expect?!

I can see it now: Ultimate US1!
Reserve your copies now!

Thanks to Noguei9, who spotted Archer's rig in Longshot#2.

At the store today (4/2/2009), a rig parked out in our parking lot and I realized they had the US-1 logo on the side of the trailer, exactly like the comic. Sadly, it was for US-1 Moving Company, so I guess Ulysses Solomon's fallen on hard times these days....
--Madison Carter

U.S. 1 had a cameo in Transformers#3 (January, 1985). Not for the 616 entry, but interesting and noteworthy for the US1 comments section.
--Loki

U.S. Archer got a full entry in Marvel Legacy: The 1980s Handbook.

Profile edited/updated by Kyle Sims & Grendel Prime

CLARIFICATIONS:
US Archer has no known connection to:


images: (without ads)
(U.S. Archer in US1)
U.S. 1#1 (U.S. Archer main pic)
U.S. 1#1 (U.S. Archer head shot)
Sensational She-Hulk I#6, p21, pan1-2 (Star Rig in space)


Appearances:
U.S. 1#1-2 (May-June, 1983) - Al Milgrom (writer), Herb Trimpe (pencils), Mike Esposito (inks), Ralph Macchio (editor)
U.S. 1#3-6 (July-October, 1983) - Al Milgrom (writer), Frank Springer (pencils), Mike Esposito (inks), Ralph Macchio (editor)
U.S. 1#7 (December, 1983) - Al Milgrom (writer), Frank Springer (pencils), Mike Esposito (inks), Ralph Macchio (editor)
U.S. 1#8 (February, 1984) - Al Milgrom (writer), Frank Springer (pencils), Mike Esposito (inks), Ralph Macchio & Jim Shooter (editors)
U.S. 1#9 (April, 1984) - Al Milgrom (writer), Alan Kupperberg (pencils), Mike Esposito (inks), Ralph Macchio
U.S. 1#10 (June, 1984) - Al Milgrom (writer), Frank Springer (pencils), Mike Esposito (inks), Ralph Macchio (editor)
U.S. 1#11 (August, 1984) - Al Milgrom (writer), Frank Springer (pencils), Mike Esposito (inks), Ralph Macchio (editor)
U.S. 1#
12 (October, 1984) - Al Milgrom (writer), Steve Ditko (pencils), Dan Bulanadi  (inks), Ralph Macchio (editor)
Longshot I#2 (October, 1985) - Ann Nocenti (writer), Art Adams (pencils), Whilce Portacio (inks), Louise Jones (editor)
Sensational She-Hulk I#7 (November, 1989) - John Byrne (writer/pencils), Bob Wiacek (inks), Bobbie Chase (editor)
Sensational She-Hulk I#39-43 (May-September, 1992) - John Byrne (writer/artist), Renee Witterstaetter (editor)
Deadpool Team-Up II#896 (April, 2010) - Stuart Moore (writer), Shawn Crystal (art), Axel Alonso (editor)
New Avengers III#7 (February, 2011) - Brian Michael Bendis (writer), Stuart Immonen (pencils), Wade von Grawbadger (inks), Tom Brevoort (editor)
Annihilators#1/2 (May, 2011) - Dan Abnett & Andy Lanning (writers), Timothy Green II (artist), Bill Rosemann (editor)


Last updated: 07/27/11

Any Additions/Corrections? please let me know.

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