ENOCH MATTHEWS

Real Name: Enoch Matthews

Identity/Class: Human; technology user

Occupation: scientist;
    former would-be world conqueror

Affiliations: Caretaker of the children of Creighton
    Silver Surfer

Enemies: an unspecified superhero

Known Relatives: father (deceased)

Aliases: unrevealed

Base of OperationsOmega Keep, Creighton, in the Appalachian region of West Virginia

First Appearance: The Ultimate Silver Surfer novel: The Broken Land (1995)

Powers/Abilities: Enoch is highly skilled in nuclear physics and the study and manipulation of various forms of electro-magnetic radiation.

History:
(The Ultimate Silver Surfer novel: The Broken Land (fb) - BTS) - Right after graduate school, Matthews tried to conquer the world, literally. He had invented an ionic destabilizer coil that compressed valent potentials which he saw as his key to the utter domination of society. His plans fell through when a member of the super hero community took him down in about thirty seconds, after which he went to a federal penitentiary. While in prison, he spent most of his time in the library. Uncovering a number of vague references to Omega Keep.

    After being released from prison, Matthews located Omega Keep, in which he had hoped to find equipment, tools, weapons: anything he could use or sell. Instead he found Rebecca Shiplett and the remnants of Creighton. Moved by the tragedy that had afflicted these youths, Matthews made it his mission to try to cure them. On a trip to obtain supplies, Matthews visited his father's grave, which happened to be near the burial site of Al B. Harper. Matthews discovered the memorial beacon left on Harper's grave site by the Silver Surfer, and realized that it contained powerful otherworldly energies. He stole the beacon and brought it to Omega Keep, where he sought to use it to help the people of Creighton.

(The Ultimate Silver Surfer novel: The Broken Land) - With the beacon, Matthews came closer to success, but he still proved unable to adequately harness the energies, and his willing test subjects did not survive the process. Shortly after a failed attempt to cure Jimmy Shiplett, Matthews sensors detected the approach of the Silver Surfer, who had discovered the theft of the beacon and come to recover it. Matthews donned a protective suit and attempted to analyze the Surfer's energies directly, but his equipment overloaded and/or was destroyed by the Surfer. The Surfer initially suspected that Matthews was trying to use the beacon as a weapon, but after learning the truth he assisted Matthews in his efforts.

    Though the effort exhausted his energy stores and left him in a dormant state fused into the rock of the mountainside, the Surfer purged Creighton and its people of radiation. After the Surfer left, Matthews examined his processor module, which had successfully analyzed the Surfer's energies during his recent effort. He considered the possibilities the module held. With its secrets, he might conceivably recreate some portion of the glory he had seen. Who knew what remarkable feats he could accomplish with such power at his command?

    With a shrug, he cast the module into a chasm and went back into Omega Keep to cared for his wards.

Comments: Created by Pierce Askegren.

This was a text story, so no images are available.

Harper's grave is described as being in a cemetery in the Ultimate Silver Surfer novel, though it is usually pictured as a solitary grave. Perhaps the light from the beacon was bright enough that Matthews saw it from a distance.

I'm not sure whether the time period in which Omega Keep was active needs to be topical. If so, then it took place 20-25 years before this story. If not, then if comics are still around in 40-50 years, then you might need to stretch it so that the mutated folks aged at a slower rate, or that the changes skipped a generation, etc.

    Alas, novels are not considered definitive canon. There are multiple examples of them becoming so, such as the "This Evil Undying" short story written by Jim Shooter, which was adapted into Avengers I#201+202. A Generation X novel also adapted into comics form, and I'm sure there are others. However, until such time as they are written in, they remain at the fringe, in the same zone occupied by the Hostess Villains, only one of whom has ever crossed the continuity barrier as of this writing. The Ultimate Silver Surfer story can be fit into the Silver Surfer's continuity at any point after Galactus dissolved the barrier around Earth. It was a nice story by Pierce Askegren, who always makes an extra effort to keep the stories true to continuity.
    For the record, these characters are welcome additions to the Appendix site. Maybe this will encourage fan and/or writer interest and get them across. I can dream, can't I? I'd love to just a flashback to Spider-Man or some other hero easily taking out a mad scientist type armed with an ionic destabilizer coil that compressed valent potentials.

CLARIFICATIONS:
No known connection to:

Omega Keep has no known connection to:


Omega Keep

A former US Army installation in the Appalachian mountains, around Creighton, West Virginia. The army was working on a powdered aerosol of radioactive material, which might be used to sterilize entire countries for a generation or two, but without the extensive damage associated with an atomic blast. The material was released--possibly deliberately--into the town of Creighton, after which the base was shut down. Efforts were made to destroy all written evidence of Omega Keep, but scattered fragments of information survived in various forms.

    Meanwhile the adults of Creighton began to develop cancer and die. Children and adolescents survived their parents, marked by terrible scars of birth defects and deformities. Unable to comprehend what had been done to them or why, they lived in complete poverty and despair. A few decades after the spill, the remnants of Creighton were discovered by Enoch Matthews, who made it his mission to save them. Matthews proved unsuccessful, even when using energy harnessed from a creation of the Silver Surfer. However, the theft of said creation eventually drew the attention of the Surfer himself, who briefly exhausted himself cleansing Creighton and its survivors of radiation. Though he could not cure their deformities and other chronic changes, he did halt its progression, so that they might have a relatively normal life.

--The Ultimate Silver Surfer novel: The Broken Land ([Broken Land (fb)], Broken Land


Last updated: 09/01/03

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