Real Name: Zom
Identity/Class: Extradimensional demon
Group Membership: None
formerly Amadeus Cho, Dr. Stephen Strange, Iron Man's Hulkbuster armor (hosts)
Enemies: Ancient One, Angel (Warren Worthington III), Amadeus Cho, Dr. Strange, Dormammu, Faeries of Dr. Strange's sanctum, Hercules, Hulk, Living Tribunal, Namora, Renegades, Rintrah, Umar
Known Relatives: None
Aliases: Zomling, Zomadeus
Base of Operations: An amphora (a type of vase) in an unidentified dimension (possibly outside the timestream)
First Appearance: Strange Tales I#156/2 (May, 1967)
Powers: Zom has vast mystical power, dwarfing that of adepts such as Dr. Strange, or even of extremely powerful beings such as Umar. However, his own power is far below that of a virtually omnipotent being such as the Living Tribunal. He uses his powers primarily to destroy everything around him. Apparently his long lock of hair acted as a mystic shield which protected him from the detection of more powerful mystic entities. The removal of this forelock awakened the "sense of evil which had slumbered for ages in the bosom of the mystics of mankind."
Weight: 9 tons
The Zomling possessed the tiniest fraction of Zom's virtually limitless power. However, it absorbed magical energy to grow in size and power. At some point, it would become powerful enough to completely reform Zom, and regain its full power.
History: Zom is an extra-dimensional monster of unknown origin. He claims to have been created to destroy, but his creator and the methods of his creation are unknown. Ages ago, he was defeated under unknown circumstances, which may have involved a union of several other extremely powerful beings, including Dormammu (the ruler of the Dark Dimension) and Eternity (the cosmic being representing the entire temporal axis of the Earth dimension). To protect the universe from his might, Zom's hands were bound with Chains of Living Bondage by Dormammu. Zom was forced to wear a Crown of Blindness, and his essence was imprisoned by Eternity within an Amphora in a "world beyond all worlds" in a "time beyond all time."
(Strange Tales I#156/2) - When Dr. Strange first encountered Umar, the sorceress of the Dark Dimension, his power and training were insufficient to oppose her directly. Under the guidance of his mentor, the Ancient One, Strange journeyed to the extra-dimensional realm which held Zom's prison, and shattered the vase. Zom instantly began to rampage, tearing off his crown and bringing down the temple which formerly held his prison. Dr. Strange got Zom's attention and opened a portal, pretending to flee from him, and led him to Stonehenge, and to Umar. Zom recognized Umar as the sister of Dormammu, who had been involved in his previous defeat. Confronted with Zom's immense power, Umar immediately fled back to the Dark Dimension. However, Dr. Strange and the Ancient One were now faced with the question of how to get rid of Zom, who shattered his bonds and threatened to shatter the entire Earth.
(Strange Tales I#157/2) - Zom attacked the Ancient One, fusing his form with the rock of Stonehenge--but not before he could say, "The--Forelock--", and pass his mystic might on to Dr. Strange. Strange had no idea what this meant, but he managed to stay out of the path of Zom's attacks until he could rip off the "Mystic Topknot" (I kid you not). Zom screamed in pain and anguish, but recovered and attacked Strange, telling him he had brought about the destruction of them all. Zom assaulted Strange, but then the Living Tribunal appeared and banished/dispersed Zom. The Tribunal told Strange that his actions awakened a sense of evil on Earth that necessitated the destruction of the entire planet.
(Dr. Strange: Sorcerer Supreme#20(fb)-BTS) - Following Zom's banishment, Strange magically stitched the Amphora back together and sealed it with a spell.
(Dr. Strange: Sorcerer Supreme#20) - A struggle in Doc's sanctum shattered the Amphora. A remnant of Zom's evil essence, the Zomling, was released. The only one who saw the Zomling was Wong's then-fiancee, Imei Chang, but the Zomling magically stopped her from mentioning it. The Zomling scurried around the mansion, absorbing power from various sources. After growing in power, it discovered the Faeries who inhabit the sanctum, and managed to capture the Faery Queen.
Strange discovered the shattered Amphora and sent his associates on a mission to locate the Zomling. Rintrah found it and attacked it before it could consume the queen, but Rintrah's magical attack only made it all the more powerful. However, Strange then arrived, and knowing that 1) The Zomling fed on magical energy, and 2) It was composed mostly of energy, but also of the dust it had consumed in the process; Strange used a vacuum cleaner to suck up and entrap the Zomling. He then magically repaired the Amphora and reversed the suction on the vacuum to spit it back into its prison. Strange resealed the Amphora, and then put it a little more out of the way, where it was unlikely to be shattered again.
(World War Hulk#3-4) - Dr. Strange used Zom's amphora and summoned Zom's power to battle the Hulk; in addition, however, Strange was possessed, at least partially, by Zom himself. Thus empowered, Strange easily overpowered Hiroim and the Warbound, and then confronted and began to batter the Hulk. However, when the Hulk saved some people who were nearly killed in the Zom-powered Strange's assault on the Hulk, Strange realized that Zom's evil, destructive nature and power was causing him to lose control. Hesitating, Strange was battered into unconsciousness by the Hulk.
(Incredible Hulk III#111 (fb) - BTS) - With Strange's defeat, Zom departed him.
(Incredible Hulk III#111 (fb)) - Zom possessed Iron Man's Hulkbuster armor and continued his rampage, heading for the SHIELD nuclear weapons gathered to oppose the Hulk, intending to detonate them and destroy Manhattan. After Amadeus Cho jinxed the Iron Man armor's doomsday system, Cho deliberately confronted Zom who, seeing him as a major threat, possessed him; however, due to Amadeus' lack of any superhuman powers, he -- as intended -- was knocked out with a single punch from Angel (Warren Worthington). With Cho's defeat, Zom was expelled, and Wong trapped him anew in his Amphora.
(New Avengers Annual#2 (fb) - BTS) - Strange retained his bond with Zom to help him function despite the damage to his hands.
(New Avengers Annual#2) - After the Hood shot Dr. Strange, Zom's power revived him and he incapacitated everyone present in his Sanctum. Strange then quit the Avengers and then told them to leave so he could regain control.
Comments: Created by Stan Lee and Marie Severin.
Thanks to Omar Karindu and Uncle Pyko for pointing out Zom's Dr. Strange: Sorcerer Supreme#20...but I still want more!
Obviously the Living Tribunal didn't destroy Earth, and the Ancient One got better from his "death" at Zom's hands, but you'll have to go get the books and read them for yourself.
I'm just glad it was his foreLOCK that Dr. Strange had to rip off.
Technically, Zom would be behind the scenes in every appearance of Dr. Strange between Incredible Hulk III#111 and New Avengers Annual#4. I'm just not sure when World War Hulk took place in relation to the New Avengers series, which had few continuity breaks.
Zom has an entry in Marvel Legacy: The 1960s Handbook and the OHotMU A to Z Premiere Hardcover #14.
Zom has no known connection to:
images: (without ads)
World War Hulk#3, last page: Zom-possessed Dr. Strange
Incredible Hulk III#111, p5. - possessing Hulkbuster armor
pg.17, panel 5 - possessing Cho
Strange Tales I#157 (June, 1967) - Stan Lee (writer/editor), Marie Severin (pencils), Herb Trimpe (inks)
Dr. Strange III#20 (August, 1990) - Roy & Dann Thomas (writers), Jackson Guice (pencils), Tony Dezuniga (inks), Ralph Macchio (editor)
World War Hulk#3 (October, 2007) - Greg Pak (writer), John Romita Jr. (penciler), Klaus Janson (inker), Nathan Cosby (assistant editor), Mark Paniccia (editor)
World War Hulk#4 (November, 2007) - Greg Pak (writer), John Romita Jr. (penciler), Klaus Janson (inker), Nathan Cosby (assistant editor), Mark Paniccia (editor)
Incredible Hulk III#111 (December, 2007) - Greg Pak & Jeff Parker (writer), Leonard Kirk (artist), Nathan Cosby (assistant editor), Mark Paniccia (editor)
New Avengers Annual#2 (March, 2008) - Brian Michael Bendis (writer), Carlo Pagulayan (penciler), Jeff Huet (inker), Molly Lazer (assistant editors), Tom Brevoort (editor)
Last updated: 08/22/10
Any Additions/Corrections? please let me know.
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