Real Name: Jonathan Gallagher (last name possibly an alias)

Identity/Class: Human, Black Ops type

Occupation: former director of the Bridge

Affiliations: former leader of the Bridge (Dr. Fishler, David Hilbert)
    answered to unknown government agent

Enemies: Ben Beckley, Comet Man, Max

Known Relatives: Colonel Jack Beckley (father, deceased), (deceased), Stephen Beckley (brother, Comet Man), Rosemary Beckley (sister), Ann Beckley (sister-in-law, deceased), Ben Beckley (nephew), Lou (former brother-in-law)

Aliases: Smith; a number of unspecified last names

Base of Operations: formerly an estate in Connecticut.
    formerly the Bridge (bases at Cape Canaveral, Florida; Manhattan, New York; Langley, Virginia; etc.)

First Appearance:
    (shadows + voice) Comet Man#1 (February, 1987)
    (face seen) Comet Man#4 (May, 1987

Powers/Abilities: Gallagher has no superhuman powers, but formerly controlled a small army of paramilitary and espionage types, as well as large group of scientists and technicians. He was a skilled falconer, was experienced with the use of handguns, and was willing to manipulate or kill anyone to achieve his ends.

(Comet Man#5 (fb) - BTS) - Jonathan was conceived by Jack Beckley and his fiancé just before he signed on to become a Naval aviator and was shipped out to the South Pacific. He was unaware that he was leaving behind a pregnant seventeen year old girl. The girl's family sent her off to Florida to have the baby, which was then put up for adoption. The girl returned home to New York and never told anyone her little secret.
    Jack eventually returned home, married the girl, and had a son, Stephen, and a daughter, Rosemary, who grew up in the lap of luxury.

(Comet Man#5 (fb)) - The adopted child, Jonathan, went from one foster home to another, and between those shifts he was in an orphanage. A loner, he quickly learned how to fight and fend for himself. At the age of seventeen, he joined the service, drifted into Naval intelligence, and he eventually rose to a position of wealth and power in the clandestine intelligence community overseas. Once he'd established himself in the business of secrets, he became obsessed with tracing his own history, eventually learning the whole story. Jonathan one day confronted his true father, who looked him square in the eyes, told him he only had one son, and had him thrown out. Furious at the treatment he had received, and at the happiness of the rest of his "family," he plotted revenge against them, vowing to destroy the Beckley name in any, and every, way possible. Jonathan managed to sabotage Jack Beckley's plane, causing a crash that killed both he and his wife.
    He remained in the intelligence community, and eventually developed his own top secret division: The Bridge. Even among the next highest group of officials within the Bridge, Jonathan was known by only one name: The Superior.

(Comet Man#1) - The Superior was informed of the apparent death of his brother Stephen, now an astronaut, by one of his agents in the Bridge, David Hilbert. When Stephen turned up alive, mutated into the Comet Man, the Superior directed Hilbert to drug him and bring him to a Bridge facility in Langley, Virginia, for study. The Superior wished to grant himself the same powers as Stephen. In order to facilitate this testing, the Superior had Stephen's wife and son, Ann and Ben, kidnapped and brought to another facility. He began testing transferring the power into Ben, so it could be determined if it was same for himself.

(Comet Man#2) - Learning of the existence of Max, the alien who had empowered Stephen, the Superior had the Bridge begin preparing to launch a space shuttle to confront Max and usurp his power.
    Beckley escaped the Bridge facility.

(Comet Man#3) - With agent Hilbert, the Superior reviewed the progress of their plan to intercept Max. He also chided Hilbert over his lamenting of the accidental death of Ann Beckley. He directed the recapture of Stephen, who was freed by an encounter with the Hulk.
    When Benny's life signs began to deteriorate from the experiments performed at the Bridge, the Superior directed the chief researcher, Dr. Fishler, to give Ben 24 hours of rest. The Superior himself donated the rare blood type needed to allow Ben to survive the testing, so that the Bridge could maintain its time table and learn the secret of the power as quickly as possible.
    The Bridge's black shuttle was launched into space.

(Comet Man#4) - As Ben's condition continued to deteriorate, Dr. Fishler refused to continue the experimentation. The Superior threatened to pass information on Fishler's identity as the Nazi War criminal, the "Butcher of Dachau," to Israeli Intelligence, forcing his cooperation. When Hilbert began to oppose the Superior's activities and questioned his motives, he revealed himself to be Stephen Beckley's brother.

(Comet Man#5) - The Superior revealed his full history to Hilbert. When Fishler announced that Ben Beckley was dying, the Superior authorized the performance of an autopsy when he finally passed away. Stephen Beckley found Ben and saved his life, however, completing Ben's empowering in the process. The Superior was equally satisfied with this outcome, then vacated the premises to monitor the attack on Max from another site.

(Comet Man#6) - The Superior supervised the meeting with Max via video transmission, ordering them to kill him should he prove uncooperative. While Stephen joined Max and helped him slaughter the Bridge squadron, Hilbert confronted the Superior and tried to force him to surrender. The Superior turned the tables on Hilbert and broke his neck. He then detonated a nuclear warhead his men had planted aboard Max's ship, but Max and Stephen teleported away in time.

(Fantastic Four I#317) - When Stephen and Max briefly returned to Earth, the Superior learned of this. Posing as Smith, a representative for the Space Agency for Defense Emergency, he traveled to the Savage Land in hopes of taking Stephen into custody. He arrived just minutes too late, as Stephen had already teleported away.

BTS - The government funding for the Bridge was cut and the Bridge was dismantled. While Stephen journeyed to Max's homeworld, Jonathan located Ben Beckley, in the care of Rosemary, Ben's aunt and the Superior's sister. As Jonathon Gallagher, he courted Rosemary, and began a romance with her, with the dual goal of ruining another Beckley's life and finding the means to usurp Ben's power.

(Marvel Comics Presents#51/2) - As Jonathon commented to Rosemary on how Ben seemed to be improving, Stephen Beckley arrived at the mansion, having located his sister and son. Rosemary introduced him to Jonathan, but neither Stephen nor Rosemary had any idea that Jonathan was the Superior, or that he was their brother.
    Jonathan attempted to requisition funding to reopen the Bridge, but was refused.

(Marvel Comics Presents#52/2) - After Stephen had spent a few weeks at Gallagher's mansion with Ben and Rosemary, Max arrived as well. When Stephen mentioned his intention of bringing down the Superior, Max--who was telepathic--told him that he figured they had made up, as he was staying at the Superior's house. Gallagher denied this, but Stephen used his own powers to read his mind and learn the truth. At the same time, Ben awakened and attacked the Superior, not realizing his father's mind was trapped in the Superior's. Gallagher ejected Stephen's mind and swatted Ben away, gaining time to draw his gun and take Rosemary hostage. The Superior shot Stephen repeatedly, to no effect, but Rosemary, disgusted at what the Superior had done to her, elbowed him and knocked him away so that Stephen could grab him.

(Marvel Comics Presents#53/2) - Stephen nearly strangled the Superior, but finally came to his senses and agreed to have him sent to prison. The Superior taunted them as he drew another gun, but then suddenly something forced him to turn the gun back on himself and blow his own head off. Stephen had not done this, and neither had Max; It was the young Ben, finally gaining vengeance for the torture he had endured.

Comments: Created by Bill Mumy, Miguel Ferrer, Kelly Jones, and Gerry Talaoc.

The Superior was described by both Stephen Beckley and Alicia Masters-Storm (actually, it was Lyja, posing as Alicia, but anyway...) as having a strange, buzzing voice.

    I guess if his parents disowned him, than his brother's wife is not actually a sister-in-law, but the same connection otherwise applies.
    Also, Rosemary's first husband (Lou)'s last name is unrevealed, so I just went with calling her Rosemary Beckley because it's easier. She certainly could have taken back her maiden name upon divorcing Lou.

While the involvement of Halley's comet is essential to the origin of the Comet Man, something has to be adjusted in order to squeeze the story into continuity. 1986, the year in which the initial story was told, is now several years before the modern age, and significantly before the events of this story (in which the She-Hulk was one of the Fantastic Four). So, either:

  1. Halley's comet's cycle is slightly different on Earth-616 than in the real world, such that its most recent pass by Earth occurred within the sliding timescale of the modern era, just a couple of years ago.
  2. It was another comet, with a similar schedule to above.
  3. Don't worry about such things and just enjoy the story.

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Last updated: 09/29/03

Any Additions/Corrections? please let me know.

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