Real NameSeveral unidentified criminals (at least three)

Identity/Class: Human technology users (Pre-Modern era; see comments)

Occupation: Criminals

Group Membership: None

Affiliations: None

Enemies: Bruce, Hank Rogers, citizens of New York City

Known Relatives: None

Aliases: None

Base of Operations: Central Park, New York City, New York

First Appearance: Tales to Astonish I#8/1 (March, 1960)

Powers/Abilities: The Floating Head was actually a hoax perpetrated by a criminal gang to simulate an extraterrestrial invasion; their scheme was to frighten the residents of New York City away, so they could loot the evacuated metropolis.

The criminals used a projection device to make the Floating Head appear in the sky; they made it seem to speak by using several hidden loud-speakers planted throughout the city. These criminals were also skilled at using explosives.

Height: 100' (see comments)
Weight: Inapplicable
Eyes: Unrevealed
Hair: Bald

(Tales to Astonish I#8/1 (fb) - BTS) - A gang of criminals came up with the idea of an alien invasion hoax that would make the residents of New York City flee, leaving the criminals free to loot the empty metropolis. They set up loud-speakers throughout the city, assembled an image projection device, and bought an old warehouse that they filled with explosives.

(Tales to Astonish I#8/1 (fb)) <Summer, 1965>  (see comments) - The criminals set up a phony construction site in Central Park, from which they projected the image of the Floating Head over New York's skyline. Using the loud-speakers to simulate the Floating Head's thunderous "voice," they had it claim to be an invader from Aqua Mentorius, and it advised the citizens to evacuate immediately, because the city would be used as a landing base for an invasion force. Just then, a squadron of jet fighters flew in and opened fire, but the Head suddenly vanished.

   Seconds later, the Floating Head reappeared over Long Island, and it explained that the people of Aqua Mentorius traveled by the power of their minds--which is how it was able to cross a distance of four million light-years to Earth in less than three seconds. To further demonstrate its power, the Head blew up an old warehouse--in actuality, the criminals simply detonated the explosives they had set in the building beforehand.

   With panic spreading throughout the city, the mayor of New York (see comments) ordered the residents to evacuate; but acting on a hunch, young Bruce discovered the criminals' Central Park hideout and informed the authorities.

(Tales to Astonish I#8/1 (fb) - BTS) - The police went to Central Park, where they apprehended the criminals and switched off the projection device.

(Tales to Astonish I#8/1 (fb)) - Immediately afterward, the Floating Head disappeared from the sky; the mayor led a crowd to the park and exposed the fraud.

Comments: Created by an unidentified writer and Paul Reinman.

In regards to its height: When the Floating Head first appeared over the city, a bystander exclaimed, "It must be almost a hundred feet high!".--Ron Fredricks

As with many 1950s and 1960s Marvel monster stories, this story is not confirmed as part of Earth-616 continuity, but there's nothing to exclude it either.
    --Leave it in unless something rules it out!--Snood.

This story was narrated from Bruce's perspective in flashback; and although it was first published in 1960, it chronicled events from 1965. I have no idea why this story was set in the near-future.

In 1960, the real-life mayor of New York City was Robert F. Wagner--the mayor in the story had a vague resemblance to Wagner, but since the mayor played a prominent role in this story, my guess is that Marvel probably didn't want to be seen as endorsing any particular political candidate, so they set the story in the future and just used a generic unidentified mayor; however, Wagner would still be serving for his third term by the summer of 1965. -- Ron Fredricks

This 6-page story--"I Dared Defy the Floating Head!"--was reprinted in Where Creatures Roam#2.

The Floating Head plot was used earlier in Journey Into Mystery I#44/1 (March, 1957) "The Menace Of The Green Men", wherein light images of space aliens become fall-guys for crooks. Perhaps either the Floating Head criminals tried the same phony alien invasion scheme again, or maybe one or more of the earlier criminals was a member of this new group.

Profile by FUTURE. Expansion by Ron Fredricks.

The Floating Head has no known connection to:

Bruce has no known connection to:

Hank Rogers has no known connection to:

criminal gang

A group of at least three unidentified hoodlums, they came up with a scheme to loot New York City by frightening the populace away.

Using a projection device stationed in Central Park, and loud-speakers scattered throughout the city, they attempted to simulate an alien invasion. To cover their illicit activities, they hid the projection device within a canvas tent and set up KEEP OUT signs, while they pretended to be utility workers laboring on a project in the park.

The criminals projected an image of the Floating Head over the city skyline and ordered the citizens to leave. They even had the Head demonstrate its "power" by making an empty warehouse explode--in actuality, the criminals had planted dynamite in the building beforehand, which they detonated at the right moment.

In the ensuing panic, their plot appeared to be working, for the mayor ordered the citizens to evacuate at once. But the criminals were foiled by teenager Bruce, who discovered their projection device and notified the authorities.

--Tales to Astonish I#8/1

projection device

Situated within the canvas tent of a phony construction project in Central Park, it was used by a criminal gang to project the image of a gigantic alien head over the skyline of New York City; it was used in conjunction with loud-speakers scattered throughout the city, to simulate the Head's "voice".

But teenager Bruce was suspicious about the construction, so he went snooping and discovered the criminals' plot, so he notified the authorities.

--Tales to Astonish I#8/1


Bruce (last name unrevealed) was a teenager who suspected that the appearance of the Floating Head was somehow connected to the newly erected construction site in Central Park.

After investigating, he observed the criminals creating the illusion of the Floating Head and immediately informed the mayor.

The criminals' plot was foiled, and Bruce was publicly honored by the mayor.

--Tales to Astonish I#8/1

Hank Rogers

Bruce's teenage friend, he suspected that the construction in Central Park was someone's idea of a gag, and this gave Bruce the idea that the construction site was connected to the appearance of the Floating Head.

--Tales to Astonish I#8/1

images: (without ads)
Tales to Astonish I#8/1, p1, pan1 (main image - Floating Head above New York City)
Tales to Astonish I#8/1, p3, pan1 (Floating Head tells of its supposed mission)
Tales to Astonish I#8/1, p4, pan1 (Floating Head above warehouse)
Tales to Astonish I#8/1, p2, pan4 (criminal gang digging in Central Park; Hank Rogers, Bruce [right])
Tales to Astonish I#8/1, p6, pan3 (criminal gang [colored yellow] arrested by police, as mayor reveals their plot)
Tales to Astonish I#8/1, p6, pan4 (mayor presents criminals' projection device and explains their plot)
Tales to Astonish I#8/1, p5, pan5 (Bruce runs to police after discovering secret of Floating Head)
Tales to Astonish I#8/1, p6, pan6 (Bruce gets congratulated by mayor)
Tales to Astonish I#8/1, p4, pan4 (Hank Rogers)

Tales to Astonish I#8/1 (March, 1960) - unidentified writer, Paul Reinman (pencils/inks), Stan Goldberg (colors), Artie Simek (letters), Stan Lee (editor)

First posted: 12/17/2004
Last updated: 03/21/2024

Any Additions/Corrections? please let me know.

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