Real Name: Wilhelm Schmidt

Identity/Class: Human (German, World War II era to modern era)

Occupation: Scientist

Group Membership: Formerly, Nazis

Affiliations: Lump, S.H.I.E.L.D., Werner von Strucker

Enemies: Baron Wolfgang von Strucker, Death's Head Squadron

Known Relatives: Lump ("son")

Aliases: None

Base of Operations: Germany

First Appearance: Nick Fury, Agent of S.H.I.E.L.D. II#1 (September, 1989)

Powers/Abilities: Wilhelm Schmidt was an ordinary man, but had a keen scientific mind. While possessed by the Gnobian mother, he could manifest her psychic powers.

History: (Nick Fury, Agent of S.H.I.E.L.D. II#3 (fb)) - In the summer of 1944, Schdmit accompanied Baron Wolfgang von Strucker to the woods outside of the village of Gruenstadt, Germany, and they heard tales of strange flying beings from a villager. Strucker murdered the villager after hearing his story, and set into the woods with Schmidt to find the creatures.

(Nick Fury, Agent of S.H.I.E.L.D. II#4 (fb)) - Venturing into the woods with Strucker and his Death's Head Guard, Schmidt saw two extraterrestrial creatures flying in the sky. Strucker had the guard shoot them dead. They then found the entrance to the creatures' home and descended into it. As they came upon a massive door, the two creatures returned to life, and a sonic attack caused Schmidt and the others to fall unconscious. When they awoke, the doors had opened, and the mother of the creatures stood before them, surrounded with her children. A Kree Sentry owned by the creatures identified them to the humans as the Gnobians, and informed them that the mother was curious about them. Strucker offered himself to the Gnobians as a guide.

(Nick Fury, Agent of S.H.I.E.L.D. II#5 (fb)) - After making telepathic contact with the mother, Strucker became determined to reap the Gnobian's technological wonders, despite Schmidt's protestations. Schmidt took one of the Gnobian eggs and hid it in his coat while Strucker ranted. Strucker then decided to massacre the entire population of Gruenstadt so that no one would know of the Gnobians. Strucker was fatally wounded when Sgt. Fury and his Howling Commandos arrived and fought him and the Death's Head Guard. Strucker went back to the Gnobians to be healed and Schmidt pursued him, noting how the egg he had kept was agitated by the madness it sensed within Strucker. Strucker was healed by the Gnobians, but the mother merged with Strucker, and became consumed by his madness. Schmidt and Strucker fled from the Gnobian base, as Strucker was determined to utilize what he had learned from the Gnobians.

(Nick Fury, Agent of S.H.I.E.L.D. II#6 (fb)) - The egg Schmidt had taken eventually opened, and out came an infant Gnobian which Schmidt named "Lump." He raised Lump like a son. Schmidt eventually sought out Baron Strucker's son Werner von Strucker, and they attempted to undo the damage done to the Gnobians, awakening them from the slumber they had lain in for decades, only to find that the mother was entirely consumed with madness. The Gnobians assumed the guise of the Death's Head Squadron, through which they planned to achieve the goals of Baron Strucker.

(Nick Fury, Agent of S.H.I.E.L.D. II#1) - Schmidt brought Lump with him to visit Werner von Strucker and tried to talk Strucker out of their plans for the Death's Head Squadron, but Strucker said that he had no choice, for his wife's sake. Schmidt later contacted the Death's Head Squadron and found that they could not be talked down either, and they went ahead with their plan to kill Timothy "Dum-Dum" Dugan.

(Nick Fury, Agent of S.H.I.E.L.D. II#2) - Schmidt left Lump behind as he journeyed into the chamber where the Gnobian mother was, and allowed himself to be linked into their mind, hoping that he could exert his influence over the mother. Instead, Schmidt was subverted by the mother, and allied himself with the Death's Head Squadron. After Lump made psychic contact with Red, a Deltan-model LMD, Schmidt sent the Death's Head Squadron to abduct her for study.

(Nick Fury, Agent of S.H.I.E.L.D. II#3) - Schmidt entered the Gnobians' memory chamber, and relived part of the events from 1944 before the Death's Head Squadron roused him. Having captured Red and the S.H.I.E.L.D. agent Kate Neville, the Squadron had them placed in a memory chamber, and they witnessed the events leading to the destruction of the S.H.I.E.L.D. Satellite some time earlier. When the Squadron captured Network Nina, Alexander Goodwin Pierce and Al MacKenzie, Schmidt studied Nina, examining her cybernetic implants. When Nick Fury and Valentina De Fontaine broke into the Gnobian base, the mother, acting through Schmidt, altered his appearance so that he looked as he did in 1944, the way the Gnobians remembered him.

(Nick Fury, Agent of S.H.I.E.L.D. II#4) - The Gnobian mother released Schmidt from her control, and he begged her to let him help undo the effects of Strucker's personality upon them. However, he was soon returned to the Gnobians' control. He watched with the Death's Head Squadron as Fury and their other captives relived the events from 1944 in the memory chamber, then went to view the Kree Death Missile, with which the Gnobians intended to use to wipe out millions of lives. Lump was terrified at the changes in Schmidt, and flung himself into the memory chamber to get Fury's help. Schmidt watched him go, and prayed that Lump would somehow save them all.

(Nick Fury, Agent of S.H.I.E.L.D. II#5) - Still controlled by the Gnobian mother, Schmidt commanded the Death's Head Squadron to set out and fulfill Strucker's desires by slaughtering millions. When the captives in the memory chamber had finished watching the scenes from 1944, the mother brought Fury before Schmidt, communicating through him the desire of Strucker's to see Fury dead.

(Nick Fury, Agent of S.H.I.E.L.D. II#6) - Schmidt wrestled with Fury until he regained control over himself, and attempted to aid Fury in combating the mother's madness. Schmidt again attempted to reason with the Gnobian mother, trying to tell her that Lump represented the way the Gnobians had once been, but she crushed him in her hand then threw him to the ground. As Schmidt lay dying, he told Lump that only he could save his people. Lump ultimately did redeem the Gnobians by linking to their minds through Network Nina, and the mother destroyed herself and the Death's Head Squadron. The Gnobian mother kept Schmidt's body by her as her base was destroyed, saddened that Strucker's madness had forced her to kill the man who had come to save her.

Comments: Created by Bob Harras, Bob Hall and Kim DeMulder.

Fury I#1 seems to claim that the Gnobians were all created by Arnim Zola as a hoax, but it doesn't jive with the actual story-- it doesn't explain where the Sentry or Kree Death Missile came from, why Strucker killed everyone in Gruenstadt, or where Lump came from. I think it's best to ignore the retcon.

by Prime Eternal

Wilhelm Schmidt should not be confused with:

Images taken from:
Nick Fury, Agent of S.H.I.E.L.D. II#1, page 5, panel 2
Nick Fury, Agent of S.H.I.E.L.D. II#4, page 8, panel 6

Nick Fury, Agent of S.H.I.E.L.D. II#2-6 (October-December, 1989) - Bob Harras (writer), Keith Pollard (pencils), Kim DeMulder (inks), Greg Wright (editor)

First Posted: 07/06/2005
Last updated: 07/06/2005

Any Additions/Corrections? please let me know.

Non-Marvel Copyright info
All other characters mentioned or pictured are ™  and © 1941-2099 Marvel Characters, Inc. All Rights Reserved. If you like this stuff, you should check out the real thing!
Please visit The Marvel Official Site at: http://www.marvel.com

Special Thanks to www.g-mart.com for hosting the Appendix, Master List, etc.!

Back to Characters