Real Name: Unrevealed
Identity/Class: Extraterrestrial (race unrevealed)
Group Membership: None
Affiliations: Others of his race
Enemies: Inhabitants of Earth (including Bobby, Spot, and unidentified magician)
Known Relatives: None
Base of Operations: Mobile on Earth; originally from his unidentified homeworld
First Appearance: Tales of Suspense I#31/1 (July, 1962)
Powers/Abilities: The Monster in the Iron Mask possessed superhuman strength (approximately class 5) and was virtually indestructible. His one weakness was to poison gases or any deadly fumes.
Having a body covered with shaggy fur, the Monster's face resembled a gray iron mask--it was unrevealed if these were traits common to his race, or unique to him alone (see comments).
The Monster traveled from his homeworld in a spaceship.
Height: 9' (by approximation)
Weight: 2 tons (by approximation)
(Tales of Suspense I#31/1) - The Monster in the Iron Mask was sent to Earth by his leaders--as the first of their invasion force, he was ordered to soften up humanity for their main army.
(Tales of Suspense I#31/1 - BTS) - The Monster landed his spaceship on a beach somewhere in America; he then apparently carried his spacecraft into a nearby cave to conceal it.
(Tales of Suspense I#31/1) - The Monster was first seen by Bobby, and he ordered the boy to tell humanity of his power; the Monster also mentioned that his one weakness was poison gases, but that his air-tight mask made him invulnerable to such attacks. The Monster then dismissed Bobby, who ran off to warn the authorities.
Shortly afterward, the military engaged the Monster in battle, but the invader was immune to their bullets and artillery shells, and he easily crushed their armored vehicles. Finally, the military resorted to using an atomic bomb, in the hope that it might stun the Monster long enough for them to remove his mask and expose him to gas; but even the bomb proved to be useless, for not only was the Monster still alive, he wasn't even stunned!
When all seemed lost, Bobby's father--a stage magician--realized that the Monster's claim of his air-tight mask giving him immunity to poison gas was merely a case of misdirection; the magician went to the authorities and encouraged them to use gas against the Monster, for he was certain it would work.
Just as the Monster was about to summon the rest of the invasion force, a soldier fired a canister at him, and the alien invader found himself enveloped by a caustic cloud of tear gas. With his vision blinded, the Monster began to cough incessantly, and the soldier threatened to use a far deadlier gas next. Realizing he had been beaten, the Monster admitted defeat.
As the Monster left Earth in his spaceship, the magician was questioned how he knew the gas would penetrate the Monster's mask; the magician revealed the alien invader's secret--the Monster's "mask" wasn't an air-tight mask at all, but it was actually his real face!
Comments: Created by Stan Lee, Jack Kirby and Dick Ayers.
Oddly enough July, 1962 was also the debut of Dr. Doom. Kirby must have really liked the design of Doom's mask.
Maybe back then, Kirby had watched the old movie "The Man in the Iron Mask" on television, and it just stuck in his mind, so he was inspired to create both Doom and the Monster.
The Monster was the only member of his race depicted in this 7-page story, so it was unrevealed what the other inhabitants of his planet looked like.
On the cover of this issue, the Monster appeared to be a little larger, less shaggy, and with the green coloring, he bears a closer resemblance to Doctor Doom...
A theory to explain the similarity between Doom's mask and the Monster's face: Maybe the whole "alien invader" bit was actually a scheme perpetrated by Doctor Doom in his early days to conquer the world (This was at a time when the age of modern heroes was only beginning, and the Fantastic Four were the only ones around).
Maybe the Monster was actually one of Doom's lackeys that he mutated (much like he did with Desmond Pitt/Darkoth) so he could instill worldwide fear of an alien invasion; then Doom himself would've appeared--since he wore a mask that was similar to the Monster's face, he would have been assumed to be the leader of an all-powerful extraterrestrial army, and thus the nations of Earth would have surrendered to his rule (The Monster did address his unseen leader as "sire").
No? Well, it was just a thought...--Ron Fredricks
Profile by Prime Eternal. Expansion by Ron Fredricks.
The Monster in the Iron Mask should not be confused with:
The unidentified magician should not be confused with:
Bobby has no known connection to:
Spot has no known connection to:
An oddly shaped unidentified planet, it was
light-years from Earth.
A faster-than-light spacecraft, it transported
the Monster from his homeworld to a beach on Earth; the Monster
apparently carried it into a nearby cave to hide it.
name unrevealed) was the son of a stage magician, and Spot was
unrevealed) was a stage magician and the father of Bobby.
After figuring out that the Monster's
"air-tight iron mask" was actually the extraterrestrial's real face, a magician convinced the military to use gas
against the seemingly invulnerable invader.
images: (without ads)
Tales of Suspense I#31/1, p4, pan2 (Main Image - The Monster in the Iron Mask (speaking to Bobby) )
Tales of Suspense I#31/1, p4, pan1 (Headshot - The Monster in the Iron Mask (speaking to Bobby)
Tales of Suspense I#31/1, p5, pan2 (The Monster in the Iron Mask withstands artillery barrage)
Tales of Suspense I#31/1, p5, pan4 (The Monster in the Iron Mask destroying tank)
Tales of Suspense I#31, cover (The Monster in the Iron Mask)
Tales of Suspense I#31/1, p1, pan1 (The Monster in the Iron Mask)
Tales of Suspense I#31/1, p2, pan1 (Monster's homeworld)
Tales of Suspense I#31/1, p2, pan2 (Monster's spaceship leaves his homeworld)
Tales of Suspense I#31/1, p7, pan5 (Monster's spaceship leaves Earth)
Tales of Suspense I#31/1, p3, pan5 (Bobby and Spot)
Tales of Suspense I#31/1, p4, pan3 (Bobby and Spot, as Monster explains why he wears the iron mask)
Tales of Suspense I#31/1, p6, pan4 (unidentified magician performs card trick; Bobby and Spot)
Tales of Suspense I#31/1, p6, pan6 (unidentified magician figures out how to defeat Monster)
Tales of Suspense I#31/1, p6, pan8 (unidentified magician tells authorities to use gas against Monster)
Tales of Suspense I#31/1, p7, pan2 (Monster hit with tear gas canister)
Tales of Suspense I#31/1, p7, pan3 (Monster reacts to cloud of tear gas)
Tales of Suspense I#31/1, p7, pan4 (soldier threatens Monster with a deadly dose of gas)
Tales of Suspense I#31/1 (July, 1962) - Stan Lee (plot/editor), Larry Lieber (script), Jack Kirby (pencils), Dick Ayers (inks)
Journey into Mystery II#18 (August, 1975) - reprint
First Posted: 05/23/2004
Last updated: 11/23/2020
Any Additions/Corrections? please let me know.
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