DAMOCLES

Real Name: Eric Barlow

Identity/Class: Human, technology user

Occupation: Extortionist;
    formerly unrevealed

Group Membership: Leader of a group of mercenaries

Affiliations: None

EnemiesBennett Barlow, Thor

Known Relatives: Bennett Barlow (brother), unnamed sister-in-law

Aliases: None

Base of Operations: Manhattan, New York City

First Appearance: Thor I#267 (January, 1978)

Powers/Abilities: Damocles used a variety of high-tech weapons, including his Airship, the Cobalt Cannon, the Destruct-Drone, and a hand-held energy blaster. He was assisted by a band of mercenaries.

History:
(Thor I#268 (fb)) - As a youth, Eric Barlow was always confused, searching for something, and taking his frustrations out on his younger brother.

(Thor I#268 (fb)) - Eric made honors throughout college an graduated at the top of his class, but after that he continued to lack a direction and drifted from job to job.

(Thor I#268 (fb)) - Eric watched as his younger brother majored in physics.

(Thor I#268 (fb) - BTS) - Eric used information he learned from Eric to prepare a cannon which could be powered by cobalt. He recruited a group of mercenaries, promising them that they could use the weapon to acquire great wealth. He took the alias Damocles, as he would hold the threat of his Cobalt Cannon above others, much like the sword hanging over the head of the historical Damocles.

(Thor I#267) - Damocles and his men broke into Trinity General hospital, swatting aside an intern and the visiting Dr. Donald Blake, and stealing a supply of synthetic cobalt, supplied by Stark International for cancer research. They escaped out a window into the airship, which was pursued and assaulted by Thor. Damocles unleashed the Destruct-Drone, sending it to target the United Nations building. Thor destroyed the Destruct-Drone, but by then Damocles and his men had escaped.

(Thor I#268) - Damocles and his men completed the Cobalt Cannon, then assaulted a group of mercenaries who questioned when they would be paid. Thor met up with Damocles' brother, Bennett, who led him to their former home, where they were confronted by Damocles, his men, and his Cobalt Cannon. The Cannon flattened Thor, after which Damocles took off, leading his men to rob a jewelry exchange. However, Thor tracked them by their cobalt energy, and Bennett revealed that the synthetic cobalt was unstable and would soon explode. Still Damocles refused to surrender, at which point Bennett pulled out a gun and shot him. Thor then created a vortex that launched the Cannon into space, where it exploded, marking Damocles passing with a virtual star.

Comments: Created by Len Wein, Walt Simonson, and Tony DeZuniga.

An indecisive, directionless villain does not make for an exciting story.

The historical Damocles, according to http://ancienthistory.about.com/library/bl/bl_damocles.htm :

Dionysius was a fourth century B.C. tyrant of Syracuse. To all appearances he was very rich and comfortable, with all the luxuries money could buy, tasteful clothing and jewelry, and delectable food. He even had court flatterers (adsentatores) to inflate his ego. One of these ingratiators was the court sycophant Damocles. Damocles used to make comments to the king about his wealth and luxurious life. One day when Damocles complimented the tyrant on his abundance and power, Dionysius turned to Damocles and said, "If you think I'm so lucky, how would you like to try out my life?"

Damocles readily agreed, and so Dionysius ordered everything to be prepared for Damocles to experience what life as Dionysius was like. Damocles was enjoying himself immensely until he noticed a sharp sword hovering over his head, which was suspended from the ceiling by a horse hair. This, the tyrant explained to Damocles, was what life as ruler was really like.

Damocles, alarmed and quickly revising his idea of what made up a good life, asked to be excused. He then eagerly returned to his poorer, but safer life.

 

Profile by Snood.

CLARIFICATIONS:
Damocles takes his name from the historical Damocles (not yet seen in the Marvel Universe)

He has no known connection to:


Airship

Used by Damocles and his men to steal the synthetic cobalt shipment, it was badly damaged by a blow from Thor, but still enabled them to escape while Thor was distracted.

 

--Thor I#267

 

 

 


Bennett Barlow

The younger brother of Damocles, he was bullied by his tormented sibling, but was still proud of his accomplishments in school. He acted as a revolutionary in college, even studying physics so he could learn to build his own nuclear bomb if necessary. Later, however, he settled down and got a job teaching at a city university, got married, and lost touch with his older brother. When Damocles stole the shipment of synthetic cobalt, Bennett met with the police commissioner and revealed Damocles' origins to him and Thor. Ultimately, when Damocles refused to surrender so that Thor might dispose of the unstable Cobalt Cannon, Bennett was forced to shoot his brother dead.

--Thor I#268 (268(fb), 268


Cobalt Cannon

 

Designed by Damocles, it was powered by synthetic cobalt and could release blasts powerful to stun Thor. The synthetic cobalt was unstable, and Thor launched it out into space where it exploded harmlessly.

 

--Thor I#267, 268

 

 

 

 


Destruct-Drone

Damocles had this released to target the United Nations Building to stop Thor from pursuing them. Though Thor destroyed it before it could reach its target, its mission was accomplished nonetheless.

--Thor I#267

 

 

 


mercenaries

 

Damocles agents, they were promised great wealth via his Cobalt Cannon if they helped in missions to help steal Cobalt and then use the Cannon in various thefts.

 

--Thor I#267 (268

 

 

 


images:
Thor I#267, p23, panel 3;
    p26, panel 4 (airship)
    p30, panel 3 (Destruct-Drone)
Thor I#268
    p6, panel 1 (Bennett)
    p10, panel 1 (Cannon)
 


Other Appearances:
Thor I#268 (February, 1978) - Len Wein (writer/editor), Walt Simonson (pencils), Tony DeZuniga (inks)


Last updated: 06/29/04

Any Additions/Corrections? please let me know.

Non-Marvel Copyright info
All other characters mentioned or pictured are ™  and 1941-2099 Marvel Characters, Inc. All Rights Reserved. If you like this stuff, you should check out the real thing!
Please visit The Marvel Official Site at:
http://www.marvel.com

Back to Characters