Membership: Digit, Dragon, Mercy, Scavenger, Scratch, Steel;
    formerly Megaton

Purpose: Peacekeeping, brining in rogue former participants in the Game

Affiliations: Death's Head (Freelance Peacekeeping Agent), Deller, William Raymond Golding, World Development Court
    Formerly N.U.R.S.E. (National Union of Retired Sports Experts)

Enemies: Chain Gang, Evil Dead, La Folie, High Fliers, High Father, the Jesters, the Jones boys, Matron, N.U.R.S.E., Scourge, Shrine, Split Infinity, Vanishing Ladies, Wildcats;
    formerly Death's Head (FPA)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

BASE of OPERATIONS: Dragon's Nest, London England, Earth-5555 @ 8162 A.D.;
    Transport via the Pig

FIRST APPEARANCE: Dragon's Claws#1 (July, 1988)

 

 

 

 

HISTORY:
(Dragon's Claws#1 (fb) - BTS) - In the 82nd century, Earth was moving ever closer to the sun; the seas were drying up, the animals were dying, and civil unrest ran rampant in the streets of every town and city.

(Dragon's Claws#1 (fb) - BTS) - The World Development Council (WDC) created the Game, "hunter and hunted" combat contests, to curb the unrest.

(Dragon's Claws#6 (fb) - BTS) - After recovery from injuries in 8149, Dragon spent the next few years forming his own team to rejoin the Game.

(Dragon's Claws#7 (fb) - BTS) - After negotiation, Mercy--who had killed the Gamers that had assassinated her father--was remanded into Dragon's protective custody. He put her deadly talents to use as a member of his newly formed Dragon's Claws.

(Death's Head#2 (fb)) - Dragon was working solo (without the other three members of Claws) during one of the Games when he encountered the Jesters, who shot him in the right arm and leg and intended to kill him. The previously unknown Scavenger leapt in from above, took out the Jesters, and took off without saying a word.

(Dragon's Claws#10 (fb) - BTS) - On their next meeting, Dragon recruited Scavenger into Dragon's Claws.

(Dragon's Claws#6 (fb) - BTS) <8155 AD> - Dragon's Claws had reached Division Three (Rogue League) in the Game championship when their blocker, Megaton, quit after disagreement with Dragon.

(Dragon's Claws#9 (fb) - BTS) - Digit joined Dragon's Claws.

(Dragon's Claws#6 (fb) - BTS) - Dragon, who was in Japan for the Tokyo grand final) saved the life of the samurai Shonin Ikeda, who had been injured in the civil unrest in Japan which had followed his departure from the Yakuza. A bond of mutual respect was formed between Ikeda and Dragon.

(Dragon's Claws#6 (fb) - BTS) <8157 AD> - Dragon recruited Ikeda (who adopted the name Steel) to replace Megaton, and this brought the Claws to the top of the League of Nations.

(Dragon's Claws#2 (fb) - BTS / Dragon's Claws#1 (fb)) - Dragon's Claws defeated the High Fliers, winning the title of Champions of Champions, the world's number one Game team.

(Dragon's Claws#1 (fb) - BTS / Dragon's Claws#7 (fb) - BTS) <8158 AD> - The Game eventually became a free-for-all. After the "Miami bloodbath," Dragon took the Claws out of the Game. The members went their separate ways.

(Dragon's Claws#1 (fb) - BTS) - Vesarin Black, chairman of the Game Players Association, expressed concerns that without the Game, the problems of urban unrest would continue to escalate. In response, Sharon Winters of the WDC announced the creation of N.U.R.S.E., the National Union of Retired Sports Experts, whose purpose it was to relocate Ex-Game players into suitable positions of employment.

(Dragon's Claws#1 (fb) - BTS) - In reality, NURSE was run by the corrupt Matron, who attempted to extort protection money from the Ex-Gamers, leading a number of these groups to rebel violently.

(Dragon's Claws#1) - NURSE commissioned the soldier known only as Deller to reactivate the Dragon's Claws to use them to take down the rogue Ex-Gamers. Wishing to perform that task himself, Deller hired another group of Ex-Gamers, the Wildcats, to kill the Dragon's Claws. To keep up appearances, Deller visited Dragon and asked him to return to activity, but--under pressure from his wife, Tanya--Dragon declined. However, when the Wildcats ambushed Dragon and his family and friends the next day, Dragon protected his loved ones and took out the Wildcats single-handedly. Realizing he missed his past life of action, Dragon donned his costume and prepared to re-gather his old allies.

(Dragon's Claws#2 (fb) - BTS) - NURSE had Scavenger and Steel released from prison.

(Dragon's Claws#2 (fb) - BTS) - The rest of Dragon's Claws joined Dragon at NURSE HQ in London.

(Dragon's Claws#2) - NURSE's Stenson sent the Claws after the psychopathic Evil Dead. However, Deller pulled rank and led the Claws into battle...and right into a trap of the Evil Dead. Deller, Digit, Mercy, and Steel were all captured, but Dragon and Scavenger arrived and rescued them. Kronos was killed by a bomb set by Dragon, and Feral and Hex were slain by Scavenger, but Slaughterhouse and Death Nell escaped. Deller secretly swore to kill Dragon for humiliating him by saving his life.

(Dragon's Claws#3) - Dragon's Claws were sent to Channel City to take down High Father, who had locked down the city and was controlling several former ex-Gamers, including Split Infinity and the Vanishing Ladies. Within their ship, the Pig, he Claws were attacked by both Ex-Gamers and the seeming prisoners within Channel City, forcing the Claws to fight back. They overcame all opposition and captured High Father, unmasking him as Starick, a former agent of NURSE.
    Meanwhile, Kurran, leader of the Ex-Gamers known as Shrine, sought vengeance for the death of his brother Barry, a member of the Wildcats.

(Dragon's Claws#4) - The Claws were sent to France to rescue the WDC's William Golding, who had been captured by the terrorists La Folie. In the process, they walked right into the middle of the struggle between two rival groups of land Barons. Mercy and Steel halted a war between the forces of Barons Rocheau and Cardon, forcing the two men to fight it out themselves to decide the conflict. In addition, Dragon discovered conflict within La Folie between leader Trevalle and his treacherous second-in-command Colonel Gescaux; Dragon released captured La Folie member Legris, establishing a bond of trust, and sent him to convince Trevalle to release Golding. Gescaux was killed while battling Dragon, and the Claws found a strong ally in Golding.

(Dragon's Claws#5) - After being shown the Dragon's Nest, their new base on the outskirts of London, Dragon's Claws were sent to investigate an explosion in "The 'Pool" (presumably formerly Liverpool), where a number of Ex-Gamers had gathered. Meanwhile, Death's Head (FPA) who had just arrived on Earth-5555 after being sent through time by the Doctor, was hired by Death Nell and Slaughterhouse to kill the Jones boys, who had been torching buildings, etc., in an effort to slay the two remaining members of the Evil Dead.. A three way struggle soon erupted, involving the Claws, Death's Head, and the Jones Boys. Originally assuming the Claws to be trying to horn in on his bounty, Death's Head attacked them as well. Dragon reached a brief peace with Death's Head when Deller blasted Death's Head from behind, renewing the battle. The Jones Boys were defeated, Nell and Slaughterhouse escaped, and Death's Head was blown to pieces.

(Dragon's Claws#6) - Dragon's Claws were sent to Canada to investigate a killer vigilante, Scourge.
    At the same time, NURSE sent Deller to assassinate Dragon's wife and son, hoping that they would be able to assure he would not retire in order to be with his family. Deller attempted to carry out the order, but found himself unable. Members of Shrine had been tracking Deller--having learned that he had given the order to send the Wildcats after Dragon--and they attacked him at Dragon's father-in-law's farm. Deller escaped, but Shrine took Dragon's family hostage, mistakenly believing them to be Deller's family.

(Dragon's Claws#7) - Mercy learned that the vigilante was emulating her own past activities. After failing to dissuade Scourge from continuing this reckless mission, Mercy terminated her with extreme prejudice.
    Matron ordered Stenson to terminate Dragon's family by any means possible. Deller returned to NURSE Central, where he confessed his activities to the visiting Golding.

(Death's Head#2) - Death's Head was hired by the Chain Gang to bring Scavenger to them; he successfully did so, though not without struggle. Dragon correctly figured it was Scavenger's former allies who had taken him, so he led the Claws to the site where he had first encountered Scavenger. Scavenger's dog, Scratch, followed his master's trail and led the Claws to the sunken Chaney Prison. Fox, leader of the Chain Gang, reminded Death's Head that he was still on his payroll and sent him to battle the Claws. Death's Head did so, though he took exact note of the number of minutes for which he was still working for Fox.
    Scavenger managed to lead Fox to the surface world, where he was overcome with Agoraphobia. Death's Head overpowered the Claws, but as he prepared to deliver the killing stroke to Dragon, he checked his watch, saw that there were 59 second left on his clock, and decided his chronometer was a minute slow; he departed, leaving the Claws only slightly the worse for wear.

(Dragon's Claws#8 (fb) - BTS) - Golding informed Dragon of his family's plight, and he took off to rescue them. He was accompanied by Deller, Golding, and Stenson.

(Dragon's Claws#8) - The Evil Dead, including three new members, infiltrated NURSE Central, where they began slaughtering their way to the top in an effort to kill Matron. With Dragon absent, the rest of the Claws were called in to stop the Evil Dead. As Slaughterhouse continued to approach Matron, she slew the rest of the NURSE board, deciding that the corporate life had been unstimulating and that she would be shutting NURSE down.
    Golding stopped Dragon from killing Deller by revealing that Stenson had given the order to kill his family, at which point Dragon used a deadly threat to force Stenson to take him to Matron. The four arrived just as Slaughterhouse was approaching the final level. Slaughterhouse escaped towards the top. Stenson escaped through a secret panel as well, turning Deller and Golding's elevator into a burning trap, but Slaughterhouse then skewered Stenson, killing him. Dragon arrived at the top to find Slaughterhouse had already fallen before Matron.

(Dragon's Claws#9 (fb) - BTS) - Matron mentally overwhelmed Dragon and hooked him into a machine to keep him in stasis while she played mind games with him and Slaughterhouse.

(Dragon's Claws#9) - Matron, unconcerned about Dragon's Claws and the Evil Dead battling savagely on the levels below her, enjoyed tormenting her two captors, subjecting them to scenarios designed to break their wills. However, Dragon and Slaughterhouse managed to rally their wills and unite their psychic force against Matron, pulling her mind into their plane, where they overpowered her; Slaughterhouse killed her mental form, just as Death Nell rushed in and slit the real Matron's throat.
    The Evil Dead escaped, and Dragon made some degree of peace with Deller after he saved Golding from the burning elevator. With NURSE now defunct, the Claws pondered their future.

(Dragon's Claws#10) - Dragon's Claws traveled to the Utopia Inter-Link North of London to stop a chemical waste transporter, hijacked by the Jesters. At the missions' conclusion, they met Holden--a defector whom Kurran had paid the Jesters to get out of the country, who revealed Shrine was holding Dragon's wife and son in Havana, Cuba. Enraged, Dragon led an assault on Shrine's base, and Tanya's father was killed in the ensuing chaos. Deller slew Kurran, but Tanya, distraught over Dragon's violent behavior, fled, apparently leaving with the remainder of Shrine. Dragon appeared to retain custody of his son, Michael.
    Meanwhile, Golding spoke out in Dragon's Claws defense to the rest of the WDC at their Berne, Switzerland base, earning them their freedom and the fight to continue their activities. The Claws agreed to press on under the guidance of the WDC, with Golding as their supervisor:

Dragon's Claws were reactivated to bring order out of chaos! To make this rotten world a better place for children like my son to grow up in! Until that happens, or until we all cease to draw breath...Dragon's Claws will fight on!

(Just 1 Page#2) - Dragon held a gun at the defeated Slaughterhouse's head and debated whether to pull the trigger after Slaughterhouse has devastated several cities and killed two of the Claws.

COMMENTS: Created by Simon Furman and Geoff Senior.

    Damn you, Gaussian Blur!!!! None of the these characters actually have these spots on them...it's the scanner.

    Time is definitely getting tighter for me, but I'll try to cover the individual members in the coming months. I'd like to get all of the rest of the major MUK characters up first though. I think we just have Black Axe, Cyberspace 3000, Dark Guard, Death's Head (FPA), and Gun Runner.
    I'm hoping Changeling can help with these, but he's been out of action lately.

Just 1 Page is a charity comic published in Great Britain.

Sorry for misspelling Paul Ridgon's name, who informed us the Dragon's Claws title has recently been collected by Panini in TPB with a redrawn and recoloured version of the J1Page. It also features new artwork by Ridgon and Simon Williams as well as a new forward by Simon Furman with a little history of the series.
--Markus Raymond

Thanks to Adam Craik for pointing out the Dragon's Claws appearance in Just 1 Page#2.

Profile by Snood.

CLARIFICATIONS:
No known connections to:


images:
Dragon's Claws#7 cover
    #2 inside cover
    #3, p1 (Pig)


Appearances:
Dragon's Claws#1-10 (June, 1988 - April, 1989) - Simon Furman (writer), Geoff Senior (artist), Richard Starkings (editor)
Just 1 Page#2 (2004) - Simon Furman (writer), Paul Ridgon (artist)


Last updated: 08/24/13.

Any Additions/Corrections? please let me know.

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