Real Name: Belaric Marcosa
Identity/Class: Human ghost/magic user
Group Membership: None
Affiliations: Jerome Selwin; formerly controlled many of his victims
Enemies: Gideon Blaine and his other victims, Buck Cowan, Elaine and Steven Marston, Lissa Russell, Topaz, Werewolf (Jack Russell)
Known Relatives: None
Aliases: The Soul-Eater, "Buck Cowan"
Base of Operations: Marcosa House
First Appearance: Werewolf by Night I#34 (October, 1975), (fully seen) Werewolf by Night I#35 (November, 1975)
Powers/Abilities: Marcosa had a number of magical abilities.
His physical form had died, but spirit continued to exist as an ectoplasmic
wraith (astral self). He could take physical form and alter his appearance
at will, but he was otherwise immune to physical harm under normal conditions.
He can manipulate the perceptions of others and even mentally control them
to some extent. Beings with psychic or empathic abilities are even more
subject to his power. It is difficult to determine the extent of his power,
as much of what he has been observed to perform may have been illusion.
Marcosa's influence center around his house. The House is at the top of a mountain, overlooking a sheer cliff, and is perpetually surrounded by a foul smelling mist. Around the house, Marcosa can alter the earth into quicksand like consistency, causing it to swallow up solid objects. He can animate the bodies of the numerous beings who had died around Marcosa House over the years. He can levitate any of the materials in Marcosa House, using them as weapons. He frequently animated the Sentinel of Hell, which was a gargoyle posed over the entrance of the House. He can form three-dimensional replicas of other beings, even superhumans, and use them to attack others.
His primary weakness was magical forces, especially that of other spirits. Such forces once reverted him into a physical form, leaving him subject to mortal injury.
Features: Marcosa has a small ruby in each of his upper central incisors, as well as wooden lower right leg, similar in appearance to a bird's claw.
(WwbN#35 (fb)) - Marcosa was active back in the latter half of the 19th Century, when he was a wealthy and powerful man, and a student of mysticism. He became renown for his powers, and many of the jaded rich would visit his home--some out of curiosity, some for thrills, some out of boredom, but most because they sought cures for their psychic ills, from this man they believed to be a faith healer. Whatever their reasons for coming, however, all soon fell under his spell, drinking to excess, falling into debauchery of every imaginable sort, all apparently to satisfy Marcosa's corrupt craving for amusement. Within weeks, Marcosa's guests--dozens at a time--would grow gaunt, stop eating, start taking drugs, etc., until they languished into stupors, all the while Marcosa became stronger. As the guests approached death, they would emerge from their stupors and kill each other in a frenzy which brought an orgy of slaughter.
They say Marcosa enjoyed the last stage the most. His diary described the immense pleasure and satisfaction her derived from striding amongst the scattered corpses, like a land baron walking amongst his peasants...or a conqueror who had won triumph without lifting a finger.
(WwbN#36 (fb)) - Marcosa slew Gideon Blaine and his wife. Knowing Blaine had psychic powers, Marcosa took steps to prevent his spirit from acting against him.
(WwbN#35 (fb)-BTS) - In all, forty-seven people died in Marcosa House.
(WwbN#34+35 (fb)-BTS) - A group of psychic phenomena researchers, including Elaine and Steven Marston, investigated Marcosa House for Jerome Selwin. The spirits of those who had died before attacked the researchers under Marcosa's direction. Only Elaine made it out alive, although she was stricken with amnesia for 7 months. Upon recovering, she was sure the others were dead, but remembered little else.
(WwbN#34 (fb)-BTS) - Marcosa somehow made contact with the comatose Buck Cowan, causing him to mention his name, thus leading a small group--Elaine Marston, Jack and Lissa Russell, and Topaz--to investigate Marcosa House.
(WwbN#34) - The group arrived at Marcosa House: As they
climbed the stairs into the dense mist, they failed to notice their car
sinking into the ground. They found the front door boarded shut, but the
boards suddenly tore free from the door, striking Russell as they flew through
the air, and the door then creaked open of its own accord. After entering
the house, the door slammed shut and none of them could reopen it. Within
minutes, the empathic Topaz fell victim to the dark powers of the House:
she screamed as if being attacked, and a shadow could be seen strangling
her shadow. Next, Steven Marston's form appeared, drawing Elaine to it,
before transforming into a skeleton that terrorized her. Russell suddenly
changed into the Werewolf (without a full moon) and attacked the skeleton.
The Werewolf decapitated the skeleton and its head shattered into a mass
of maggots, but it nonetheless picked him up and hurled him across the
room, before vanishing in a soundless explosion. The shadowed form of Marcosa
could be seen and heard cackling from above.
Later that night, after Topaz had recovered, they conducted a seance, where they were confronted by what appeared to be the spirit of Russell's werewolf, which told them to leave the House. Later still, the peasant/werewolf took physical form and attacked Russell, as punishment for failing to leave.
(WwbN#35) - Topaz managed to force the "werewolf spirit" back into human form, after which it was seemingly destroyed by Marcosa as punishment for failing him. Next they saved Lissa from a hanging at the hands of what appeared to her stepfather. Shortly thereafter, Russell again became the Werewolf, and was attacked by the House, which grew arms and created walls of flame. The Werewolf then found Elaine stabbing the now dead body of Topaz, after which he reverted to Russell and found Marcosa himself standing above the body of Buck Cowan, which had been seemingly transported to Marcosa House and now hung limply from a rope.
(WwbN#36) - Marcosa vanished as Russell approached him,
and Buck's body fell to the ground, still alive, but now with a broken leg
to complement his other injuries. Topaz's corpse then came to life and attacked
them, but quickly reverted to its animate form. Jack and Buck then found
Topaz alive and communing with the other spirits in Marcosa House. The peasant
who had previously claimed to be the spirit of the werewolf then arrived
and revealed that he was actually Gideon Blaine, one of Marcosa's victims,
who had now managed to cast off Marcosa's will. Blaine led them to free
the spirits of Marcosa's other victims, and then led them to locate Marcosa's
mortal remains. However, when they opened the chamber, they were attacked
by powerful tentacles, which forced them out and then again sealed the door.
The group's spirits were raised by the sound of approaching sirens, only to find that the "police" were actually corpses animated by Marcosa and sent after them. "Buck" then revealed himself to be Marcosa, and announced that it was time for him to end this game.
(WwbN#37) - Topaz and the Werewolf fought off the ghastly
cops, but Marcosa then took control of Topaz, Elaine, and Lissa, forcing
them to attack one another. The Werewolf assaulted Marcosa, but found him
to be immaterial, and thus immune to attack. However, the spirits held by
Marcosa managed to manifest themselves in the physical world, also materializing
their prison, which was composed of Marcosa' soul. Blaine directed the
Werewolf to tear their prison open, allowing the spirits to then free the
three women from Marcosa's control. The spirits then assaulted Marcosa himself,
forcing him back into human form.
The Werewolf attacked Marcosa, who fought back, but was unable to drive him off. Marcosa materialized forms of some of the Werewolf's recent opponents--Dr. Glitternight, Moon Knight, and the Hangman--which attacked him. With Blaine's help, the Werewolf used the attacks of each of these enemies against the others, destroying them. The Werewolf then leapt on top of Marcosa, savagely tearing at and eventually killing him.
Russell then found Marcosa's remains within the now unlocked chamber and destroyed them with a sledgehammer, which allegedly would prevent Marcosa from ever returning.
Comments: Created by Doug Moench and Don Perlin.
For virtually the entire story of Werewolf#33-37, Jack
Russell's mind remained in control of the Werewolf. This was due to the
magic of Marcosa House, but it had residual effects, allowing him to soon
after remain in control of the Werewolf, after the assistance of a few others.
Much of the plot and background detail for Werewolf by Night#34-37
was derived from the 1971 horror novel Hell House and its 1973 movie adaptation,
The Legend of Hell House, both written by Richard Matheson. In fact, Doug
Moench's version often reads like a comic book adaptation of Matheson's story,
with a werewolf thrown in. (Matheson's original character was named Emeric
Marcosa, aka the Soul-Eater has no known connection to:
He was a 19th Century theatrical magician. His wife traveled
to Marcosa House, where she fell under Marcosa's power and eventually died.
Blaine went to the House seeking vengeance, but Marcosa was prepared for
him. Knowing Blaine was his equal in psychic power, Marcosa used tricks
involving his dead wife to get the better of him, and then killed him. Still,
realizing that Blaine's spirit might have some power, Marcosa beheaded
Blaine and walled up his decapitated corpse within the cellar dungeon. He
placed Blaine's skull within a cement gargoyle, which he had placed over
the entrance of the House and named the Sentinel of Hell. Thus he kept Blaine's
soul separated from the spirit of his wife and rendered him powerless.
While trapped in Marcosa House a century or so later, Jack Russell and his allies shattered the Sentinel of Hell, releasing Blaine's skull. They also found his skeleton and broke it out of the dungeon. Marcosa had initially forced Blaine to pose as the spirit of the werewolf possessing Russell, and to attack Russell and his allies. His spirit now freed, Blaine revealed the truth to Russell and his allies, and rallied the other spirits in Marcosa House against its master.
Blaine sacrificed his own spirit to strengthen the spirit of the comatose Buck, allowing him to recover.
--Werewolf #34, 36 (36(fb), 34-37
Marcosa's other victims
Any of the forty-five others slain during Marcosa's "parties"
during the 19th Century. Their bodies were walled up in a dungeon in the
cellar of Marcosa House, and their spirits used for Marcosa's further amusement,
either being tortured by him, or using him to torture other visitors in
Under Gideon Blaine's guidance, Jack Russell and his allies broke down the dungeon imprisoning their skeletons and Blaine summoned their spirits.
--Werewolf #35 (35(fb), 36
(Werewolf#34 (fb)-BTS) - An elderly man near death, Selwin
sought mystic means to cheat death. Specifically, he wished to hire others
to uncover the secrets of life and death that were alleged to exist with
Marcosa house. He hired Steven and Elaine Marston and a group of other psychic
researchers to investigate the house, offering them $200, 000 if they could
unlock its secrets for him. Elaine was the only survivor, and the others
died within the house.
(Werewolf#34) - A year later, Selwin made a similar offer to Jack and Lissa Russell, Topaz, and Elaine Marston, who had brought the others to Selwin after their friend Buck Cowan had lapsed into a coma, mentioning Marcosa in his delirium (Elaine had met Cowan when he had sought to research Marcosa House as a potential cure for Russell's lycanthropy).
(Werewolf#37-BTS) - By the time the group escaped Marcosa House, Selwin had been committed.
Sentinel of Hell
The gargoyle over the entrance to Marcosa House contained within it the skull of Gideon Blaine, Marcosa's greatest foe. Marcosa animated the gargoyle and used it against those imprisoned within his house, but the Werewolf eventually shattered it, partially freeing Blaine's spirit.
--Werewolf by Night I#34 (36(fb), 34-36
Werewolf by Night I#36 (December, 1975)
Werewolf by Night I#37 (March, 1976)
Last updated: 12/30/04
Any Additions/Corrections? please let me know.
All 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