Real Name: Unrevealed
Identity/Class: Extraterrestrial (race unknown)
Occupation: Would-be world conqueror
Group Membership: None
Affiliations: His alien henchmen
Enemies: Marvel Boy (Bob Grayson)
Known Relatives: None
Aliases: Dr. Noiro
Base of Operations: A remote cave in the Grand Canyon; formerly in a United States atomic research plant; originally from an unnamed planet in the constellation of Orion
First Appearance: Astonishing#5/1 (August, 1951)
Powers/Abilities: Orion Rex was an inventive genius who created a harmless and noiseless anti-radiation bomb which could neutralize the after-effects on an atomic explosion. Orion Rex demonstrated no special powers and appeared to be a normal human (see comments), however he was able to survive an atomic bomb blast with only slight injuries. He carried some form of a handgun and used a flying saucer for transportation.
History: (Astonishing#5 (fb) - BTS) - At some point in time, Orion Rex came to Earth, where he established the identity of physicist "Dr. Noiro" at an atomic research plant. He spent two years developing an anti-radioactivity bomb -- his true purpose: to use it in a war against Earth as a defensive measure for his invading forces when Earthmen used atomic weapons against them.
(Astonishing#5 - BTS) - When he felt in danger of his work being discovered, "Dr. Noiro" disappeared, and there was talk of him being whisked off by a flying saucer. The flying saucer was tracked across the country until it landed somewhere in the Grand Canyon, where Orion Rex had built a secret base in a remote cave.
(Astonishing#5 - BTS) - Orion Rex arranged for two landslides to hit the area, which killed forty-four people. Because of the mysterious landslides and rumors of flying saucer sightings, residents began to leave the area to flee "the curse of the Canyon".
(Astonishing#5) - Marvel Boy flew to the Grand Canyon in his Silver Bullet spacecraft to investigate the disappearance of "Dr. Noiro," but he was captured by Orion Rex and two of his alien henchmen and kept as a prisoner. When Orion Rex left to make a meteorological survey (to see if weather conditions were favorable for space travel), Marvel Boy escaped from the lone henchman guarding him, then he flew off in the Silver Bullet to pick up an atomic bomb (with the permission of the Secretary of Defense and the President, of course). Marvel Boy flew back to the secret cave, A-bombed the aliens' base, then investigated the site in a protective anti-radiation suit. He found the sole survivor to be Orion Rex, who was only slightly injured. Marvel Boy punched Orion Rex and knocked him out, then detonated an anti-radiation bomb to neutralize the fallout and decontaminate the area. As he turned him over to the authorities, Marvel Boy exposed Orion Rex as the missing Dr. Noiro (using his superior intellect, Marvel Boy was finally able to deduce that "Noiro" was actually "Orion" spelled backwards -- it's a good thing he didn't use the alias of "Rex O'Ryan" instead, because that would have been too easy for Marvel Boy to figure out).
Comments: Created by an unknown writer and Bill Everett.
Although this was the cover-story of that issue, the aliens on the cover (who looked more gruesome) had no resemblance to the aliens in the story, even though Bill Everett handled the art on both.
Considering the alien appearance of his henchmen, perhaps Orion Rex was actually a member of that race whose true form was somehow altered to make him appear human.
Although this story was their first and only recorded meeting, Orion Rex and Marvel Boy seemed to be familiar with each other, which suggests to me that they may have met previously (maybe in some "Untold Tales of Marvel Boy" adventure or something).
This story ("The Caves of Doom") was reprinted in Marvel Tales#15 (July, 1968) and Marvel Super Action##4 (November, 1977).
...and I apologize for the poor quality of the pictures, but there just really weren't any clear views of Rex and the aliens in this story.
Profile by John Kaminski
Orion Rex has no known connections to:
The alien henchmen
Only two were seen in this story. They had humanoid bodies, green skin, and wore bubble helmets (possibly because they were unable to breathe Earth's atmosphere?) which obscured their faces. They assisted Orion Rex in his plans for conquest, and they were killed when Marvel Boy A-bombed their cave base.
images: (without ads)
Astonishing#5, p7, pan6 (main image)
p5, pan3 (head shot)
p5, pan4 (alien henchman)
Last updated: 05/21/06
Any Additions/Corrections? please let me know.
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