Real Name: Neal Richmond
US (Earth-712) citizen with former criminal record (wanted for opposing the actions of the Global Directorate)
former resistance fighter
Squadron Supreme (Amphibian/Kingsley Rice, Hyperion/Mark Milton, Power
Skrullian Skymaster/Sk'ym'x, Doctor
Spectrum/Joseph Ledger, Whizzer/Stanley Stewart);
former leader of the Nighthawks
Enemies: Grandmaster of Reality-616, Blue Eagles, Doctor Doom (Victor Van Damme) of Earth-1610, Global Directorate, Hulk of Earth-1610 (Bruce Banner), Institute of Evil (Ape X/Xina, Dr. Decibel/Anton Decibel, Foxfire/Olivia Underwood, Lamprey/Donald McGuiggin, Mink/Julie Steel, Quagmire/Jerome Michaels, Shape/Raleigh Lund), Master Menace (Emil Burbank), Nick Fury of Earth-1610, Proteus of Earth-58163 (Kevin MacTaggert), Scarlet Centurion
Known Relatives: William Robinson (Huckster, biological father, deceased), Kyle Richmond (Nighthawk, adopted father, deceased)
Aliases: Dark Phoenix
Base of Operations: Utopia
formerly the Aerie, beneath Cosmopolis;
formerly an unrevealed foster home;
formerly Richmond Manor, New Troy;
formerly the Huckster's unrevealed home;
born in Cosmopolis, New Troy
First Appearance: Squadron Supreme: New World Order I#1 (September, 1998)
Richmond possesses no known superhuman powers. A talented athlete, was
trained in several forms of martial arts and self defense by his
adoptive father Kyle. As Nighthawk, he uses a pair of flexible, large
wings once worn by the original Nighthawk to soar across short
distances. It's likely he also uses over his adoptive father's other
crime fighting tools such as his grappling lines and gas pellets.
Conscientious, freedom loving and loathing any type of oppression, Neal is often unwilling to compromise on matters he feels might be used for evil, such as the brain washing b-mod (behavior modification) devices, originally designed by Tom Thumb. The sole inheritor of the vast Richmond fortune, Neal is independently wealthy.
Weight: 207 lbs.
(Squadron Supreme: New World Order#1 (fb) - BTS / Official Handbook of the Marvel Universe A to Z Update#4: Nighthawk profile) - Neal Richmond is the son of the criminal Huckster, a brilliant con artist seething with contempt for mankind's stupidity and a vicious psychopath who reveled in grotesque murders; as well as being the archenemy of the heroic Nighthawk (Kyle Richmond). The Huckster eventually died battling Nighthawk when one of his schemes backfired, but Richmond discovered the criminal had left behind a young orphaned son, Neal. Feeling responsible, Kyle adopted Neal and raised him as his own son. Kyle passed along many of his special skills to Neal, but also taught him about decency, honor and justice, earning Neal's lifelong gratitude and admiration.
Well aware that his enemies might strike at the boy, Kyle kept Neal out
of the public eye, including during his time as America's president and
during his opposition of the Squadron Supreme's takeover America as part of
their Utopia Program.
After Kyle's death at the hands of Foxfire, Neal watched as the world
around him began to splinter a few months after the Squadron Supreme was
lost in a galactic crisis (the threat
of the Nth Man
(Squadron Supreme: New World Order I#1 - BTS) - In the Squadron's absence, a cabal of political opportunists known as the Global Directorate took over America using the Squadron's Utopia technologies. The Global Directorate swiftly evolved into a dictatorship policed by brutal, fascist, b-mod controlled enforcers, the Blue Eagles.
(Exiles I#78 (fb) - BTS) - The Global Directorate used voter fraud to secretly steal the elections, making it seem as if their victory was legitimate. The Directorate quickly took over, advocating policies that favored order over personal freedom as they began to police every facet of human existence.
(Squadron Supreme: New World Order I#1 (fb) - BTS) - Following his adoptive father's teachings, Neal refused to sit idly by without opposing tyranny. He assumed the mantle and costume of Nighthawk (but without its wings since he felt he had to earn them), believing that his father would have opposed the loss of human freedom. He recruited others to his cause, financing, outfitting, and training them as his Nighthawks, acting as an anti-Directorate resistance movement; however, his troops' increasingly fanatical and ruthless conduct offended Neal's strict moral code and he struggled to maintain control over them.
(Squadron Supreme: New World Order I#1 (fb) - BTS ) - From his hidden lair beneath the city of Cosmopolis (dubbed the Aerie), Neal directed various raids against the Directorate and their armed, b-mod controlled enforcers, the Blue Eagles.
(Squadron Supreme: New World Order#1 - BTS) - When the Squadron
Supreme returned from a prolonged stint on Earth-616, Neal
initially refused to work with them
since he still blamed them for Kyle's death; nonetheless, Neal took Madeline
and Tina Stewart into protective custody, aware that the Blue Eagles had
targeted them as hostages to be used against the Whizzer (Stanley
Stewart). Unaware of either Neal's involvement or his intentions, the
Whizzer was stunned to see his family hauled away.
(Squadron Supreme: New World Order I#1 - BTS) - Shocked to find their native world in such a sorry state, the Squadron Supreme was approached by Mysterium, Earth-712's supreme sorcerer. He told the Squadron the tide might be turned if they were able to gain the aid of "the watcher", "the dark phoenix" and the "in-betweener." Acting on a hunch, Hyperion sought out Neal Richmond, suspecting he might be the "dark phoenix."
(Squadron Supreme: New World Order I#1) - Nighthawk debriefed his Nighthawks after they returned to the Aerie with Tina and Madeline Stewart. Chewing them out over the fact they'd acted recklessly and had used excessive force, Nighthawk then noticed how his gruff and angry demeanor scared young Tina. He had the Stewarts escorted to one of the Aerie's guest suites, ordering his men to extend them every courtesy. Once again alone with himself and his thoughts Richmond worried about losing control over the Nighthawks, feeling they continued to drift towards a more politically militant, borderline revolutionary movement. He was also concerned with the Squadron's return, but was nevertheless mostly haunted by the fear he saw in young Tina's eyes.
(Squadron Supreme: New World Order I#1 - BTS) - Hyperion managed to get a lead on Nighthawk, tracing him down to his base underneath Cosmpolis where he fought several squads of Nighthawks who fruitlessly tried to shoot the invulnerable Eternal.
(Squadron Supreme: New World Order I#1) - Nighthawk ordered his forces to stand down and took Hyperion to his ready room where the two talked. Richmond admitted his doubts and insecurities about carrying on his surrogate father's mantle, not to mention the Nighthawk's mission. However, he refused to accept Hyperion's offer to join the Squadron as the new Nighthawk, claiming he felt the team still had the blood of Kyle Richmond on their hands. Deciding not to argue with Neal, Hyperion was ready to leave but not before asking why Richmond didn't wear the original Nighthawk's wings. Neal confessed he didn't feel he'd earned them yet. Turning away as he left, Hyperion casually commented it might be time he did.
(Squadron Supreme: New World Order I#1 - BTS) - Touched by Hyperion's words, Nighthawk donned the wings and started to prepare his forces for an all out offensive. Meanwhile on Utopia Isle, the Squadron's former member Skymax ("watcher") and Amphibian (the "in-betweener") agreed to rejoin the team after Power Princess and Dr. Spectrum had managed to convince them, only Hyperion returned with bad news on the recruitment front. The Squadron then assaulted the Blue Eagles' base, located at the site of the former Squadron City.
(Squadron Supreme: New World Order I#1) - When Hyperion was hit and almost killed by strength sapping argonite lasers, Nighthawk sent in his Nighthawks, riding in on fighter jets and engaging the enemy. Nighthawk himself flew down to meet with Hyperion, telling him to go confront his old enemy Master Menace, widely held responsible for arming the Blue Eagles. The Skymaster helped fight off the Blue Eagles until Hyperion confronted their alleged creator Master Menace (only to find Emil Burbank had been forced to do the Directorate's bidding via the b-mod, as well). Hyperion freed Burbank and the team returned to Utopia Island where they began work on overthrowing the Global Directorate, though because the Squadron believed their enemies were chosen democratically, they felt any action taken against the G.D. would indirectly prove they were dictators.
(Official Handbook of the Marvel Universe A to Z Update#4: Nighthawk profile) - Neal also took Kyle's place in the Squadron ranks as they fought to end the Directorate, as well as helping to dismantle the remnants of the Utopia program.
(Exiles I#64 (fb) - BTS) - Nighthawk was present on Utopia Isle when
Exiles member Barnell Bohusk appeared out of thin air to request
Hyperion (Mark Milton)'s help in defeating "King Hyperion", an insane
counterpart who threatened all of reality.
(Exiles I#77) - Just as the Squadron Supreme found themselves under attack and about to be overwhelmed by the Global Directorate and the Blue Eagles, with Nighthawk near defeat and ready to be taken prisoner, the dimension hopping Proteus (Earth-58163 ("House of M)'s Kevin MacTaggert inhabiting the body of Hulk of Earth-6375's 2099 AD) appeared on Utopia. Feigning ignorance (but actually on the run from the Exiles), Proteus claimed he'd come looking for Hyperion and proved his trustworthiness by assisting the Squadron in forcing the Blue Eagles to retreat. Proteus then told an elaborate lie about being hunted by the Exiles, who had turned evil shortly after Hyperion had assisted them. Properly baited, the Squadron immediately attacked the Exiles as soon as they blinked in. Content with having distracted his enemies, Proteus teleported away while the fight continued. Skymax, after defeating the real Morph, disguised himself as Morph (Kevin Sydney) and ended the confrontation by knocking out Blink while his teammates overpowered the other Exiles.
(Exiles I#78) - Nighthawk presided over the court case the Squadron Supreme held against the Exiles in the High Judicial Temple on Utopia Isle. Still believing Proteus' claims the Exiles were evil, Nighthawk charged the interdimensional heroes with crimes against nature, history and the human race itself. If they were found guilty, the punishment would be life imprisonment. The Exiles balked against this, calling the trial a mockery but Skymax assured them that "our league exists to serve justice." Using Doctor Spectrum's prism as a make shift lie detector, the Squadron heard testimonies from the various Exiles.
(Exiles I#78 - BTS) - In the Exiles' headquarters the Panoptichron, Heather Hudson watched the trial unfold and began to worry. Unable to extract her teammates due to Dr. Spectrum throwing up a force field around the Judicial Temple, she was forced to improvise. Checking the Panoptichron's data banks for any data on Earth-712, Hudson learned about the Squadron's actions in the past and realized they were in no position to judge anyone.
(Exiles I#78) - Just as Sabretooth, fed up with the unfair trial, was ready to throttle Nighthawk, Heather Hudson used the Panoptichron's hologram array (thereby looking as the Timebroker) to appear in the court room. With the advanced technology of the Panoptichron, she showed both teams the truth about their mission and the various successes and setbacks they'd had to endure. Experiencing the Exiles' impressive track record, fixing various alternate realities, Hyperion was ashamed since the Squadron weren't even able to save their own world. Heather Hudson then supplied them with evidence of the Global Directorate's voter fraud, taken directly from their own files. After leaking this evidence to the world's media, the Squadron and the Exiles invaded the Global Directorate's headquarters to depose the dictators. In the aftermath, Nighthawk watched as Power Princess temporarily joined the Exiles in their hunt for Proteus. As the interdimensional heroes left, Hyperion told Skymax and the others they'd better make sure Power Princess has a world worth coming home to.
(Exiles I#81 - BTS) - After chasing Proteus across several realities, the Exiles decided the best way to neutralize his threat was by exposing the villain to Tom Thumb's b-mod mind control technology. Zarda and Spider-Man 2099 were transported back to Earth-712 to obtain one of the b-mod devices.
(Exiles I#81) - Power Princess and her fellow Exile teleported into the b-mod room inside the Blue Eagle's former base (the old Squadron City.) Nighthawk was hard at work dismantling the devices, dedicated to making sure not a single scrap of b-mod tech remained. Surprised to see Zarda return, he nevertheless refused Spider-Man to even examine one of the brainwashing chairs, forcing Power Princess to sucker punch her fellow Squadron member, commenting he always made everything so difficult. With Nighthawk out, the Exiles quickly went to work.
(Ultimate Power I#8 (fb) - BTS) - At some unrevealed
point, Neal encountered and fought alongside Earth-616's Captain
(Ultimate Power I#1 - BTS) - Reed Richards of Earth-1610 ("Earth-Ultimates") sent out a series of dimensional probes designed to look for a cure for his friend Ben. Unbeknownst to Reed, these probes were altered by Doctor Doom of that Earth on orders of Nick Fury. Instead of collecting data, the probes caused unbelievable devastation in multiple realities, including Earth-31916. As a result, Earth-1610's heroes found themselves under attack from Earth-31916's super-powered operatives the Supreme Power, who had traced the destructive probe back to its source.
(Ultimate Power I#7) - After a long, convoluted fight, the Ultimates' reality-altering Scarlet Witch (Wanda Maximoff) used her unpredictable powers, inadvertently summoning Nighthawk and the other members of Earth-712's Squadron Supreme to the fight going on between the two teams in and around Earth-1610's Washington D.C. The newly arrived Hyperion furiously announced they'd make everyone pay for the damage done to their world.
(Ultimate Power I#8) - As the three teams of heroes tore into each other, the Squadron realized they were quantum duplicates of Earth-31916's heroes, so in synch they shared half their powers and even finished each other's sentences (clarifying that Hyperion-712's world was not destroyed, but that Hyperion-712 was completing the thoughts/sentences of Hyperion-31916). Nighthawk-712 approached the Ultimates' Captain America, thinking him to be his Earth-616 counterpart, and couldn't understand why "Cap" didn't recognize him after their previous encounter. Nighthawk then met his Earth-31916 doppelganger. At the same time, the Ultimates' Nick Fury, hoping to end the fighting and save face, unleashed the enraged, fighting mad Hulk from his Helicarrier prison.
(Ultimate Power I#9) - During the fight against the Hulk, Nighthawk's left leg was crushed when the bestial behemoth grabbed and threw him at the Ultimates' Captain America. Nighthawk was down for the count and was unconscious even as his teammate Skymax devised a plan that would not only contain the Hulk, but allow the Squadron to return home as well. Ordering heavy hitters like the two Hyperions, Dr. Spectrums and Thor to mount a coordinated attack, Skymax changed into the Hulk in order to buy the others time (which resulted in him getting sorely beaten.) At the same time, the Scarlet Witch, Moonglow-712 and Arcanna-31916 put the finishing touches on a spell that made sure "all things went back." Nighthawk and the other Squadron members returned to Earth-712.
Comments: Created by Len Kaminski (writer), Anthony Williams (pencils), John Beatty (inks).
It doesn't take the world's greatest detective to figure out that Neal Richmond's biological father the Huckster, Nighthawk's archenemy, is based on Batman's most implacable foe, the Joker.
The story that introduced Neal Richmond was one that returned the Squadron Supreme to their rightful world, after a series of guest-appearances in Quasar and the Busiek/Perez Avengers run. Writer Len Kaminski's main purpose seemed to be to bring the Squadron into line with what DC was doing at the time with the JLA, their universal analogues. Retuning them to the "original Big Seven" line up, which had proven a smash hit for DC with Grant Morrison as the architect of a new JLA era. At the start of Squadron Supreme: New World Order, the non-founding Squadron members Shape and Lady Lark were rather conveniently injured on arrival and carted off to a hospital never to be seen again. The Squadron was then tasked to locate its remaining founders, so that by the end of the one-shot, the Squadron Supreme was once more a direct analogue of the classic Justice League of America.
the Big 7 of the JLA were brought back together by Grant Morrison,
they had two "replacements" on the team: Kyle Rayner standing in for
Hal Jordan and Wally West doing the same for the Barry Allen Flash.
Neal became the Squadron's "legacy hero", taking over for his adoptive
dad Kyle Richmond. I am surprised they did not find an excuse to pass
the Power Prism on to another Doctor Spectrum, to keep it all in
-- Barry Reese
This character may have been named "Neal"
in homage to artist Neal Adams, who is considered by many to be one of
the definitive Batman artists of the 1970s.
Nighthawk received a profile in the Official Handbook of the Marvel Universe A-Z Update I#4 (December 2010.) His full first and last name were confirmed in that entry.
Unless otherwise specified, all locations and beings related in this profile refer to Earth/Reality-712 versions.
Profile by Norvo, replacing/revising/updating a profile written by Barry Reese.CLARIFICATIONS:
Concerned with the way the Global Directorate was taking over the world, Neal Richmond took on the costumed identity of Nighthawk that once belonged to his deceased billionaire adoptive father, Kyle. Using his funds, he constructed a massive underground base underneath the city of Cosmopolis (under the former Squadron City) which he called the Aerie. He then began recruitment drives for people who were equally concerned with what was going on in the world. Training and outfitting these people himself, Nighthawk divided them into squads of five "Nighthawks" each (at least 23 such squads were alluded to.) The Nighthawks were trained in martial arts and hand to hand combat, using their pitch black costumes to operate stealthily. Some, if not all, Nighthawks were trained to ride motorcycles and/or fly fighter jets. Richmond sent the Nighthawks out on various missions to needle the Global Directorate. When the Squadron Supreme returned, he sent Nightwing Patrol Unit 23 to "kidnap" the Whizzer's family, concerned the G.D. and their army the Blue Eagles might be out to take them hostage as leverage over the Squadron. The Nighthawks, flying a number of fighter jets, assisted the Squadron Supreme in their assault on the Blue Eagle's main base.
What happened to the Nighthawks after their leader joined the Squadron Supreme remains unrevealed.
-- Squadron Supreme: New World Order I#1
images: (without ads)
Official Handbook of the Marvel Universe A to Z Update#4: Nighthawk profile main image (main)
Squadron Supreme: New World Order I#1, p23, pan 1 (main)
p35, pans3&4 (confesses his doubts)
(unmasked image - inset to main)
Exiles I#77, p11, pan4 (under the gun)
("second costume" image)
Ultimate Power I#8 p22, pans3&4 (meets "Cap" and counterpart)
Squadron Supreme: New World Order I#1, p22, pan3 (Nighthawk's Nighthawks)
Squadron Supreme: New World Order I#1 (September, 1998) - Len Kaminski (writer), Anthony Williams (pencils), Andy Lanning (inks), Tom Brevoort (editor)
Exiles I#64 (July, 2005) - Tony Bedard (writer), Mizuki Sakakibara (pencils & inks), Mike Marts (editor)
Exiles I#77 (April, 2006) - Tony Bedard (writer), Jim Calafiore (pencils), Mark McKenna (inks), Mike Marts (editor)
Exiles I#78 (May, 2006) - Tony Bedard (writer), Jim Calafiore (pencils), Mark McKenna (inks), Mike Marts (editor)
Exiles I#81 (July, 2006) - Tony Bedard (writer), Jim Calafiore (pencils), Mark McKenna (inks), Mike Marts (editor)
Ultimate Power I#7 (October, 2007) - Jeph Loeb (writer), Greg Land (pencils), Jay Leisten (inks), Bill Rosemann & Ralph Macchio (editors)
Ultimate Power I#8 (December, 2007) - Jeph Loeb (writer), Greg Land (pencils), Jay Leisten (inks), Bill Rosemann & Ralph Macchio (editors)
Ultimate Power I#9 (February, 2008) - Jeph Loeb (writer), Greg Land (pencils), Jay Leisten (inks), Bill Rosemann & Ralph Macchio (editors)
Official Handbook of the Marvel Universe A to Z Update#4 (December, 2010) - Jeff Christiansen and Mike O'Sullivan (head writers), Gus Vasquez (art), Jeff Youngquist (editor)
Last updated: 08/22/14
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