Real Name: Kurt Klemmer

Identity/Class: Human

Occupation: Handyman; serial killer

Group Membership: None

Affiliations: None

Enemies: Mamie; Gramps; Omega the Unknown; Amber Grant ; James-Michael Starling; Scourge

Known Relatives: Ethel Klemmer (mother, deceased)

Aliases: None

Base of Operations: Hell's Kitchen in New York City

First Appearance: Omega the Unknown#6 (January, 1977)

Powers: Kurt Klemmer was presumably a skilled handyman. He was otherwise a nondescript, average human being -- it was this seeming ordinariness that allowed him to elude the police for so long. Klemmer killed his victims with an ordinary wrench, but he also carried a handgun with him.

History: (Omega the Unknown#6) - Kurt Klemmer was a relatively ordinary handyman until his mother, Ethel, died. Unhappy and unbalanced, he decided to "fix" people around him by bludgeoning them with his wrench. Ethel Klemmer's elderly friend Mamie was one of Klemmer's victims. Unfortunately for Klemmer, Mamie's boyfriend, Gramps, and Gramps' friend Omega were outside Mamie's apartment building when Klemmer killed her. Omega, hearing Mamie's scream, flew in to investigate, but Klemmer stunned him with a blow from his wrench and fled, with Omega in pursuit.

As Klemmer ran towards his home, he brushed past Amber Grant, a freelance photographer who had become linked to James-Michael Starling, who was in turn linked physically and mentally to Omega. Omega arrived at Klemmer's home and decided to observe his behavior for a while. Klemmer left to seek out new victims, and ran across Amber and Starling. Before he could kill them, Omega appeared and kicked him to the ground. Klemmer pulled a pistol and shot at Omega, grazing the alien's head and knocking him unconscious. Amber took the opportunity to taunt Klemmer into retrieving his wrench, snap a photo of the fight, and land an ineffectual karate blow on the killer. Klemmer struck Amber aside, and was about to kill her when Starling drew on the powers he shared with Omega and defeated Klemmer with energy bolts.

(Captain America I#394 - BTS) - A Scourge working for the Red Skull reported that he'd killed the Wrench.

Comments: Created by Steve Gerber, Mary Skrenes, and Jim Mooney

The Wrench was about as realistic a killer as ever seen in comics. The Omega the Unknown series is full of interesting (and often depressingly realistic) depictions of urban life. (I agree -- it's an excellent series. Go get it. Now!---Snood)

How did a nondescript serial killer, not even called the Wrench anywhere in the story, become a victim of Scourge? Easy -- Klemmer was photographed fighting a superhero. More than likely, the "Wrench" tag and exaggerations of what he was went along with news accounts of Omega, making an ordinary murderer into a "supervillain" pretty quickly. That, or Scourge killed a different Wrench noted below.

Profile by Omar Karindu.






Clarifications: Wrench is not to be confused with:

Scourge-this guy would be Scourge I-3, who was executed right after his report, for failing several assassination attempts and undermining the name of Scourge.

Omega the Unknown#6 (January, 1977) - Mary Skrenes & Steve Gerber (writers), Jim Mooney (pencils), Mike Esposito (inks), Archie Goodwin (editor)

First Posted: 12/08/2001
Last updated: 08/01/2002

Any Additions/Corrections? please let me know.

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