NUMBER 16

Real Name: Unrevealed

Identity/Class: Human

Occupation: HYDRA agent, torturer

Group Membership: HYDRA,
formerly Secret Empire and the original Sons of the Serpent

Affiliations: HYDRA agents

Enemies: Nick Fury, SHIELD

Known Relatives: None

Aliases: None

Base of Operations: A HYDRA complex in Lamia, Greece

First Appearance: Marvel Comics Presents#157 (June, 1994)

Powers: Number 16 has no superhuman abilities, but bore an electrified claw for torturing prisoners. (He probably patterned it after Baron Strucker's Satan Claw)

History: Number 16's origins are unknown, but given his resemblance to Baron Wolfgang Von Strucker, it is likely that at a young age, scorned by others due to his ugliness, he was inspired by the Baron to one day become an agent of HYDRA himself, where he could perform whatever sadistic acts he liked, and be among other men of an ugly persuasion. Or perhaps he was one of Strucker's doubles, meant to take a bullet for him. Or, most likely, he was a Strucker impersonator, attempting to abuse his position in HYDRA to launch a career in the entertainment world.

(Avengers I#32-33 - BTS) - Number 16 was among the original members of the Sons of the Serpent, who performed various acts of terrorism against foreigners in New York City, and fought the Avengers. The Serpents dispersed after learning their leader, the Supreme Serpent, was really the Asian dictator General Chen.

(Marvel Comics Presents#157) - After a time with the Secret Empire, Number 16 joined HYDRA, and participated in a plot to capture spies, interrogate them for information, then sell it to the highest bidder. Among his captives were two SHIELD agents, which brought SHIELD director Nick Fury himself upon his operation. After setting the prisoners free, Fury had the SHIELD Helicarrier destroy the HYDRA base, sealing Number 16 inside with all the men he had tortured-- men who then beat him terrifically for all the pain he had put them through.

After the beating was over, Fury brought him to the United Nations to stand trial.

Comments: Created by Mariano Nicieza and Kris Renkewitz

Fury went to a lot of trouble to set things up so the prisoners in the HYDRA base could beat Number 16 up. But if you've read my Android X-4 profile, you're probably already familiar with the byzantine logic of one Colonel Nicholas J. Fury.

I'm just guessing that if Number 16 was one of the original Sons of the Serpent, he'd have been in Avengers I#32-33. For all we know, he'd already joined the Secret Empire by the time they came to the Avengers' attention. I'm tempted to toss that Number 16 from Defenders into his History section too, but I probably shouldn't.

by Prime Eternal

Clarifications:
Number 16 should not be confused with:


Other appearances:
Avengers I#32-33 (September-October, 1966) - BTS


images:
Marvel Comics Presents#157, p3, pan2 (Number 16 main image)
  p3, pan3 (head shot)


Last updated: 08/20/02

Any Additions/Corrections? please let me know.

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