Real Name: Clifford "Cliff" Garner

Identity/Class: Normal human

Occupation: Newspaper reporter, former soldier

Group Membership: Daily Bugle

Affiliations: Edward Harrison, J. Jonah Jameson, Cecil B. Slinkard, Ben Urich

Enemies: Control, Edward Harrison

Known Relatives: None

Aliases: None

Base of Operations: New York City, USA

First Appearance: (unnamed) Invaders I#3 (January, 1976); (named) Conspiracy#1 (February, 1998)

Powers/Abilities: Cliff Gardner was an accomplished newspaper reporter with three Manhattan Press Club rewards.


(Invaders I#3/Conspiracy#1 (fb)) - Cliff Garner was a private in the Air Force standing guard duty at an Air Force Base near Washington DC in 1942 when Captain America, the Human Torch and Toro stormed the base to commandeer a plane to prevent an assassination attempt on Sir Winston Churchill at the Bermuda Triangle. Garner mistook the three of them for Nazis and held them at gunpoint, but the Human Torch melted the barrel of his gun. Garner watched as his superior officer General Cecil B. Slinkard called for his men to open fire on the heroes, but they emerged unscathed. Garner realized then that he wanted to fight for the truth rather than accept the fabrications that the U.S. Government created.

(Conspiracy#1 (fb)/Daredevil I#1 (fb) - BTS)) - As a reporter several years after the war, Garner tried to report on youth Matt Murdock who was involved in a traffic altercation where radioactive material robbed the boy of his sight. Nurses specifically brought in to help Murdock refused to let Garner see the boy. Garner saw the incident as an indication of a larger conspiracy at work.

(Conspiracy#1 (fb)) - Garner became convinced that the Federal Government had been manipulating and controlling superhumans as an unidentified informant started feeding him info. Garner’s editor, J. Jonah Jameson, offered to help him if he could meet his source, but Garner declined, claiming he was protecting him.

(Conspiracy#2 (fb)) - Subsequently, Garner felt a need to stash his notes, photographs, declassified files and a key to a safe deposit box in Punios Verde, New Mexico in the Daily Bugle offices. He vanished to rendezvous with retired Army General Edward Harrison, but Harrison proved to be unstable and stabbed him ninety-eight times with the handle of a steel comb.

(Conspiracy#1-2 - BTS) - An LMD (Life Model Decoy) of Cliff Garner found Mark Ewing, a reporter who had reopened Garner's case and took him to meet Harrison. Harrison recognized it as an LMD almost immediately and destroyed it.


Comments: Created by Dan Abnett and Igor Kordey.

It’s unrevealed as to who sent the Garner LMD to Ewing. If it was Harrison who wanted to give his conspiracy a basis by killing it or if it was by some secret organization looking to flush out Harrison is unrevealed.

Garner's account of seeing Matt Murdock in the hospital in Conspiracy#1 came from the LMD, so its veracity is doubtful.

According to the "conspiracy", an agency known as Control comprised of high-ranking military personnel such as Colonel Edward Harrison, General Cecil B. Slinkard, General Thaddeus Ross, General Lewis Haywerth, Howard Stark and Bolivar Trask financed scientific masterminds such as Reed Richards, Henry Pym, Bruce Banner, Charles Xavier, Theodore "Ted Sallis, Dr. Otto Octavius, Elias Starr, Myron MacLain and Calvin Zabo into creating the known heroes of Earth and indirectly its villains. Part of the purpose was allegedly to give the military a reason to create objects of destruction. As Dum-Dum Dugan pointed out to Ewing, Harrison’s scenario does seem to have its own sort of logic and structure as the facts seem to fit together (Will U: "It’s the same reasoning I use on my gods and goddesses research."), but as yet, there is definitive proof that such an organization as Control exists or once existed within the United States Government of the Marvel Universe. On the other hand, if witnesses say the shots came from the grassy knoll and Oswald was placed in the cafeteria before Kennedy was shot, why hasn’t there been...whoops, wrong conspiracy. Or is it ?

by Will U

Cliff Garner has no known relation (but in a book like Conspiracy, who knows?) to:

Invaders I#3 (January, 1976) - Roy Thomas (writer/editor), Frank Robbins (pencils), Vince Colletta (inks)
Conspiracy#1-2 (February-March, 1998) - Dan Abnett (writer), Igor Kordey (artist), Kelly Corvese (editor)

Last updated: 11/17/03

Any Additions/Corrections? please let me know.

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