Membership: Kronus (leader), Cap'n Skragg, Joe the Gorilla, Onionhead, Pecos, Pinstripe, Sweet William
Purpose: Make some money; formerly to frame Cornelius Van Lunt and make some quick cash on the way
Affiliations: (Joe and Pecos only) agents of Libra and Sagittarius of the android Zodiac
Enemies: Avengers (Black Panther/T'Challa, Goliath/Clint Barton, Quicksilver/Pietro Maximoff, Scarlet Witch/Wanda Maximoff, Vision), Cornelius Van Lunt, the Defenders (Hellcat/Patsy Walker, Hulk/Bruce Banner, Nighthawk/Kyle Richmond, Valkyrie/Brunnhilde), and the "Defenders for a Day"
Base of Operations: New York City
First Appearance: Avengers I#77 (June, 1970)
After Cornelius Van Lunt destroyed his business career, the man known only as Wilkins organized the Split-Second Squad to destroy Van Lunt in turn.
(Avengers I#77(fb)) - The Split-Second Squad, so named for their exact timing during robberies, were thwarted in a waterfront heist by the Avengers. A week later, their bank robbery was derailed by the Black Panther but they escaped thanks to a gas gun attack from Onionhead.
(Avengers I#77) - Learning that the Avengers had been hired by Van Lunt to do menial labor, Kronus set a trap for them at a tunnel beneath the East River. the Squad set off a bomb to kill the team, but the Avengers (suspecting that Kronus was Van Lunt) anticipated the trap and mopped up the Squad in, well, seconds. All, including Van Lunt, were surprised to learn Kronus was Wilkins.
(Defenders I#63-64) - Joe the Gorilla and Pecos (and possible Cap'n Skragg; see comments) were part of an army of supervillains assembled by Libra and Sagittarius of the android Zodiac in a ploy to cash in on the "Defenders" documentary aired by Dollar Bill. However, the villains were assaulted by an equal army of heroes also attracted by the documentary. Joe the Gorilla caught Valkyrie in a choke hold in the course of a battle on the Staten Island Ferry, and was killing her when she hallucinated that she was being attacked by Asgardian trolls and hurled nearly all the villains and heroes away from herself, including Joe and Pecos.
(New Mutants: Lethal Legion#2) - Cap'n Skragg, Joe the Gorilla, Pecos and Sweet William participated in a tryout to become members of the newest iteration of Count Nefaria's Lethal Legion, but they were all defeated by other potential recruits during the tryout.
Comments: Created by Roy Thomas and John Buscema.
There's something distinctly reminiscent of the 60s Batman TV show (with Adam West) about the Split-Second Squad.
Ironically, Van Lunt was crooked; Avengers I#80 revealed he was a criminal, #82 revealed he was involved with Zodiac, and finally Steve Englehart revealed him as Taurus of the original Zodiac in Avengers I#120
Cap'n Skragg is on the cover of Defenders I#64, but he appears in only a single panel, on page 15, panel 5. Defenders I#63 was the only cover to feature members of the original Squad, by the by.
Also, I'd swear this is Sweet William in Daredevil I#251, page 15, panel 4. Even the dialogue fits. I really think it's him, the same way that Olshevsky knew Hidalgo and Juan from DD I#75-76 were also the Tarantula's aides in ASM I#134-135.
Pinstripe was not named in the original issue, but instead was first identified in The Official Marvel Index to the Avengers#4 (December, 1987-the graphic album style version)--Snood.
Profile by Omar Karindu. Update by Markus Raymond (New Mutants: Lethal Legion).
CLARIFICATIONS: The original Split-Second Squad should not be confused with:
Cap'n Skragg is not to be confused with:
Joe the Gorilla is not to be confused with:
Kronus is not to be confused with:
Pecos presumably takes his name from, but is otherwise unconnected to:
Real name Wilkins, he was a businessman ruined
by Cornelius Van Lunt. Van Lunt hired him as a menial
secretary-type, prompting him to seek vengeance. As Kronus, he
wore a padded outfit designed to make him look like Van Lunt,
leading to a Scooby-Do style unmasking.
He was a generic sea captain type, and did very
little of note otherwise. He appeared against the Defenders, but
only in two panels.
He was, like the Ox from the original
Enforcers, one of those almost-but-not-quite superstrong types.
He preferred choke holds, and was one of the Squadders who later
showed up to battle the Defenders. He nearly killed Valkyrie with
a hammerlock, but only succeeded in triggering her
warrior madness, leading to a painful finish to their battle.
He presumably derived his name from his cap,
and seemed to be a sort of sidekick to Cap'n Skragg. He was
fairly adept with his chosen weapon, a gas gun.
He had the cowboy role, and wielded six-guns.
He seemed fairly accurate with them, and was also one of the
memebrs who aided the android Zodiac.
He dressed in 1890s style attire, and may have
been the group's second-in-command. He was a nervous sort, and
wielded a tommygun in battle to little effect.
He continually expressed regret over the
"violence" of the group's activites, and was a wild
gunman who seemed to enjoy shooting at people. He takes him name
from a type of flower.
images: (without ads)
Avengers I#77, p6, pan4 (main)
Daredevil I#251, p15, pan4 (possibly Sweet William in Daredevil)
Avengers I#77, p6, pan5 (Kronos, in costume)
Avengers I#77, p19, pan8 (Kronos, true face)
Avengers I#77, p19, pan4 (Cap'n Skragg, original)
New Mutants: Lethal Legion#2, p5, pan4 (Cap'n Skragg, Lethal Legion tryout)
Avengers I#77, p18, pan6 (Joe the Gorilla, orginal)
New Mutants: Lethal Legion#2, p5, pan4 (Joe the Gorilla, Lethal Legion tryout)
Avengers I#77, p8, pan5 (Onionhead)
Avengers I#77, p17, pan4 (Pecos, original)
New Mutants: Lethal Legion#2, p5, pan4 (Pecos, Lethal Legion tryout)
Avengers I#77, p18, pan2 (Pinstripe)
Avengers I#77, p8, pan3 (Sweet William, original)
New Mutants: Lethal Legion#2, p16, pan1 (Sweet William, Lethal Legion tryout)
Avengers I#77 (June, 1970) - Roy Thomas (writer), John Buscema (pencils), Tom Palmer (inks), Stan Lee (editor)
Defenders I#63 (September, 1978) - David Kraft (writer), Sal Buscema (penciler), Jim Mooney (inker), Bob Hall (editor)
Defenders I#64 (October, 1978) - David Kraft (writer), Sal Buscema (penciler), Don Perlin (inker), Bob Hall (editor)
New Mutants: Lethal Legion#2 (June, 2023) - Charlie Jane Anders (writer), Enid Balám (pencils), Elisabetta D'Amico (inks), Sarah Brunstad (editor)
First Posted: 07/14/2002
Last updated: 09/26/2023
Any Additions/Corrections? please let me know.
Non-Marvel Copyright info
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
Special Thanks to www.g-mart.com for hosting the Appendix, Master List, etc.!
Back to Groups