BARON KARZA
Karza - despot of the Microverse

Real Name: Baron Karza

Identity/Class: Extradimensional (Microverse) human mutate/cyborg

Occupation: Despotic ruler of the Microverse, genocidal killer;

formerly Chief Scientist and Overseer of the Body Banks

Group Membership: Leader of the Dog Soldiers, the Unmen;

probably head of the Master Assassins

Affiliations: Ampzilla, Archivist, Battleaxe, Battle-Beetles, Belladonna, Centauria, Captain D'ark, Major D'ark, Dagon, DeGrayde, Dexam (pawn), dog soldiers, Eved, Faceless Priests, G-Men (pawns), Hydra, Imperial Gamesman, Kronos race, Master Assassins (implied), Professor Prometheus, Shaitan, Thanos, Tri-bunal (pawn), Unmen (pawns);

formerly Princess Mari, Arcturus Rann, Lord Dallan Rann, Lady Sepsis
very briefly the Micronauts (Acroyear, Bioship, Bug, Fireflyte, Huntarr, Marionette, Arcturus Rann), the X-Men (Ariel, Colossus, Nightcrawler, Storm, Wolverine, Charles Xavier)

Enemies: Effectively the entire Microverse. Notably the Acroyear race, Aquon, Argon (Force Commander), Captain Universe (Ray Coffin), Cilicia, D'arnellian race, Diarmid, Entity, Janna-23, Kaliklak (especially Queen Esmera, Queen Lyca, Treefern), Knights of Neep, Lady Coral, Lockheed the dragon, Margrace, Micronauts (Acroyear, Bioship, Biotron, Bug, Devil, Fireflyte, Huntarr, Marionette, Microtron, Nanotron, Arcturus Rann), Microns (Bug, Marionette, Arcturus Rann), Murder-1, New Mutants (Cannonball, Sunspot, Spellbinder/Mirage, Wolfsbane), Prince Pharoid, Prisonworld (especially Little D), Lord Dallan Rann, Lady Sepsis, Shanna-23, S.H.I.E.L.D. (especially Dum Dum Dugan, Nick Fury, Gabriel Jones), Slug, Tril, Time Traveler, Wolverine tribe (especially Ojeeg, Shaman), X-Men (Ariel, Colossus, Cyclops, Marrow, Nightcrawler, Phoenix, Rogue, Storm, Wolverine, Charles Xavier)

Known Relatives: None

Aliases: The Baron, Force Commander (identity temporarily assumed after killing original)

Base of Operations: Mobile throughout the Microverse, especially Homeworld (particularly the Body Banks);

H.E.L.L. Laboratories, U.S.A., Earth;
Hydra base below Fantasyworld theme park, U.S.A., Earth;
Xavier's School for Gifted Youngsters, U.S.A., Earth

First Appearance: Micronauts I#1 (January, 1978)

Powers/Abilities: Karza's eyebeams

Baron Karza was initially a normal human from the Microverse. He was a cunning master strategist with tremendous long-term vision and an escape plan for defeat, including physical resurrection. He was able to influence others by appealing to their base and negative aspects, but was quite prepared to rescind any alliance to further his own ends. He was egotistical, arrogant and ruthless, and craved power and knowledge, as well as the acquisition of new and alien technologies that could augment his own powers.

He was aware of his malignant behavior and increasingly embraced his evil nature, becoming power mad and genocidal in his quest for domination over life. He had the ability to transfer his mind into a formidable suit of armor, effectively becoming something akin to a cyborg through the merging of man and machine. Ultimately, it was only his mental energy that remained, which required a host body in order to function in the physical world. Each 'resurrection' left him more malevolent with no conscience about the murder and mutilation of entire races. He had advanced knowledge of mutating people, subverting their will until they became his servants, with some being unrecognizable in their new form; he sacrificed millions to his bloody Body Banks that harvested limbs and bodies to extend people's lives (for a price) or create new minions. He briefly wielded the incredible Uni-power (which temporarily transformed his ebon armor to white), but he rejected the neutrality it came with in favor of his greedy human emotional desire for conquest; this left him mortal and totally reliant on his armor. He was an excellent hand-to-hand combatant, but relied on his armor for attack and defense, and displayed incredible will power and psi-powers.Karza's chest cannons

His black armor was derived from alien races in the Microverse and included an extremely powerful force field that he could mentally activate instantly; this covered all his armor's capabilities. He had four cannons mounted across his chest that could atomize humans (but send Microverse natives on Earth back to the Microverse). His large red buckle mounted on his mid riff could fire similarly destructive blasts, as could his gloves. His eyes fired red fiercely concussive beams, as well as nervous shock blasts, although he could also extract knowledge from other people's minds. His gauntlets could be fired and controlled mentally (short range) which he used to pummel others or strangle victims to death. Notably, he was able to transform into a fast and powerful centaur form with engines/blasters mounted on his flanks, plus a metallic spiked tail. Karza had a personal teleportation facility, which was likely short-range. He had also used a power saber.

As a resident of the Microverse, when traveling to Earth under conventional means, he would only be about 6" tall. He could maintain his normal size when traveling under special means, such as through the Prometheus Pit.

 

Karza takes his helmet offHistory:
(Micronauts I#3 (fb) -BTS) - Karza had humble beginnings before seeking more knowledge to expand his power.

(Micronauts I#38 (fb)) - Over 1,000 years ago, Chief Scientist Karza trained the young royal, Arcturus Rann, to fly using glider wings. However, in one class, he cut Arcturus' wings, forcing the youth to grab onto Karza in order to stop falling and they landed safely, if somewhat unceremoniously. Although not actually named, it was quite evident that Karza later used the Master Assassins to climb the tower where Arcturus' quarters were, but they were noisy and the youth was alerted before they could reach him. Arcturus engaged them in combat using his wings, but the assassins all died before they could reveal their master's name. Concerned by the apparent conspiracy against the royal house, Arcturus' father, Lord Dallan Rann, then commanded Karza to train his son to be the first Micronaut. Arcturus was Karza's only pupil during this time. Arcturus later left on his 1,000-year journey into the Microverse and discover new worlds.Karza teaches Rann to fly

 

 

 

 

(Micronauts I#25/2 (fb)) - This assassination attempt (or possibly another) uncovered Karza's murderous plot against the ruling royal family of Homeworld and he fled to the Syanite Desert on Sandzone. Near death, he was rescued by a group of sun-cultists and recovered in their monastery in the ancient underground city of Aegypta. Deciphering the cultists' secret and aged scrolls, Karza gained access to a science that was said to be older that the Microverse. He used this science to craft his black suit of armor and transferred his mind into it. Karza then destroyed the cultists' temple and transformed them. He returned to the First Zone to seek vengeance upon Homeworld and secure domination of the Microverse. However, he also anticipated defeat at some point and made plans for a comeback.

Karza transfers his mind into the ebon armor

 

(Micronauts I#6 (fb)) - Baron Karza established and controlled the Body Banks, selling prolonged life to those who could pay, while also amassing his own private army of Dog Soldier drones. It was first shown here that once Arcturus had departed, Karza captured and slew Dallan and Sepsis Rann in the Body Banks before taking over as Regent.

(Micronauts Special Edition#4) - Karza's malevolence caused a ripple of concern in the Enigma Force, leading it to seek out a champion to resist the evil tyrant. It found Artcurus Rann in suspended animation as he explored the Microverse. His thoughts generated the Time Travelers, who began the seeds of resistance against Karza.

(Micronauts II#8 (fb) - BTS) - Karza's subjugation of various races in the Microverse revealed to him new technologies and powers, which he then used to further his conquest of the Microverse.

(Micronauts II#15 (fb)) - More than a hundred years ago, the young Lord Eved was attracted to the Court Dancer, Diarmid, and made a pact with Karza to win her affection while Eved would promote the Baron in the Royal Court. However, Karza sought instead to destroy Eved's family, who had been resistant to his machinations, and betrayed him. Karza's manipulations made it appear that Eved was responsible for the monstrous ice hydra (recreated in his Body Banks), which attacked Mari (who was disguised as Diarmid using a device given to her by Karza). Karza appeared and took the poisoned Mari away and replaced the Princess' legs with those of the poison-resistant Diarmid, thereby crippling the dancer and shaming the Princess. Karza then had Eved executed and his organs harvested for the Body Banks.

(Micronauts II#15 (fb) - BTS) - Homeworld's ancient Palace of Rulership was demolished before Karza came to power.

(Micronauts Annual#1/2) - Already master of the Body Banks, Baron Karza, in his centaur form, confronted Prince Argon, Princess Mari and their father and threatened them that they would soon be powerless before him. Later they attended the gladiatorial arena, where they were brought before Karza and his ally, the Acroyear Prince Shaitan. Karza announced a coup and killed Argon's and Mari's parents, ordering the corpses be taken to the Body Banks. Argon and Mari managed to escape, although this was Karza's plan so that he might find the rebellion's base and ultimately the Enigma Force. Karza returned to the gladiatorial stadium.

(Micronauts Annual#1/3) - Karza sat with Shaitan to watch the bloody spectacle of the Arena of Death. Having survived the carnage between prisoners and mutates, Prince Acroyear and Bug were instead sentenced to death by Karza, but again they survived being executed, this time by destroying a hornetroid. The crowd cheered the two fighters and so Karza decided to keep them for the next day's battle show.

(Micronauts I#1) - Once Mari and Argon returned to the secret rebel hideout, Karza attacked and severely injured Argon, commanding that wounded royal be taken to the Body Banks, although Mari escaped. Commander Arcturus Rann returned in his starship Endeavor after his peaceful mission to chart and discover the Microverse. However, Karza had readied his dog soldiers and next commanded them to open fire on the unsuspecting traveler, before having him taken to a cell. Karza watched with Shaitan as the next day's gladiatorial bouts began, reveling in the crowd's loyalty to him. However, Rann, Bug, Acroyear, Mari and Microtron escaped in the liberated Endeavor, but all according to the plans of Karza who sought to identify an unknown element at work: the Enigma Force!Karza's flying gauntlets

(Micronauts I#2) - Karza oversaw the experimentation on Argon.

(Micronauts I#25/2 (fb) - BTS) - Karza's mutilation of Argon also involved manipulating Argon's will as part of Karza's preparation for possible defeat, as well as implementing a post-hypnotic suggestion in the event of Karza's defeat. Argon's body was genetically altered to act as a potential future host for Karza.

(Micronauts I#3) - Karza was greeted by a somewhat surly Duchess Belladonna, whom he had known for over 900 years, a regular visitor to the Body Banks. She now sought to claim Mari's body to extend her own life, but was informed that Mari had not yet been captured. Elsewhere, Argon, after being subjected to Karza's brutal experiments, lay in chains, his lower body replaced by that of his horse's torso and legs.

(Micronauts I#5) - Baron Karza ordered the collection of fresh new bodies (which included the female Slug) for his Body Banks to be personally inspected by himself, undertaken by Major D'ark. The Baron congratulated the Major on his successful raid on the rebels. Karza then ordered Tril be brought before him. The rebel defied him, but Karza launched his hand to break the neck of the rebel, before ordering the other civilians be taken to the Body Banks.

    Later, Karza learned of Shaitan's failure to capture to the Micronauts, having pursued them to Earth, and used a hologram communicator to sever his alliance with the renegade Acroyear. The thoughtwash used by Karza to make the Acroyear people believe the rightful heir, Prince Acroyear, was dead was also revoked by Karza.

(Micronauts I#6) - At the Body Banks, Belladonna chided Karza, but he informed her of what he had achieved on Homeworld, where the rich enjoyed luxury and prolonged life through the Body Banks, the middle class forced to work to stay alive, while the poor and homeless were herded into becoming fodder for the Body Banks and his Dog Soldier army. However, the mutated Argon then attacked and fired gun blasts at Karza, but the Baron was protected by his personal force field and blasted Argon with his red eye beams. Slug cried out against Karza, who then chose her as the replacement body for Belladonna.

(Micronauts I#7) - Summoned by the High Shadow Priest, Baron Karza, in his centaur form, was told that the Spacewall had been breached. Unknown to them, it was actually Professor Phillip Prometheus and Ray Coffin who had fallen through the Prometheus Pit, which was an access port from Earth into the Microverse. Karza dispatched his space fleet to investigate the humans. Prometheus was in shock from the experience and the encountering of the much smaller Microversians, but Karza had plans for him. The tyrant was fascinated by the sheer size of Prometheus and desired the knowledge to gain entry to Earth. The Baron then set about to engage in a mind-merge with rapidly insane Prometheus. Elsewhere, the Time Traveler imbued Ray Coffin with the Enigma Force so that he could become Captain Universe. Meantime, Karza discovered the entrance to the Prometheus Pit from the Microverse and thought how to conquer Earth.Karza in his centaur form

(Micronauts I#8) - Using Prometheus' body and now Earth-human in size after traveling through the Pit, Karza confronted Arcturus Rann and his teammates and engaged them in battle using his gauntlet blasters and force field. He had almost destroyed them when Captain Universe (Ray Coffin) suddenly appeared from the Prometheus Pit and challenged Karza. The two fought fiercely against using their awesome powers. Karza announced that he would seek to destroy the Enigma Force so that no new champion could rise to defy him. The Micronauts fled in the Endeavor back into the Prometheus Pit with Karza, having reversed the mind-merge, in pursuit, but they would arrive light years apart.

(Micronauts II#15 (fb)) - In the 1,013th year of his reign, Karza filed an entry in his personal journal reflected on his journey of increased power and dominion over the Microverse. He questioned his own ends and what he ultimately sought - knowledge or power? He wanted to duplicate the Prometheus Pit he had encountered on Earth to bind space and time to his will. He declared himself unafraid, but then erased the journal entry. Later, he was able to construct such devices and installed one on every sphere of Homeworld, thereby facilitating the destruction of all Homeworld's life.

(Micronauts I#9) - The Endeavor arrived near the Acroyear's planet of Spartak, while Baron Karza arrived on the bridge of his Galactic Command Center. Major D'ark reported of a previous entry and Karza commanded his fleet to warp to Spartak. Once there, Karza's starships blasted the Acroyear homeworld, but the Acroyear warriors and the Micronauts defended themselves. Rann drove a ship directly at Karza, but the Baron was protected by his powerful personal force field. Meanwhile Prince Acroyear summoned the Worldmind to fight Karza.

(Micronauts I#10) - Mari attacked Karza in her small fighter craft, but the Baron blasted it apart using his belt blaster before firing his hand at Mari, thereby capturing her and Arcturus. The Baron commanded Major D'ark continue the invasion of Spartak, then departed for Homeworld to pry the secret of the Enigma Force from Artcurus. Meanwhile, the Acroyears, all except the captive traitor Shaitan, resolved to defy Karza. The Baron returned to find the rebels commanded by Force Commander attacking the Body Banks.

(Micronauts I#11) - Arcturus, now recovered, defied Karza, but was blasted by the concussive force of the Baron's eyebeams. The despot then confronted Force Commander with the power-shackled bodies of Mari and Arcturus, but Force Commander attacked and Karza transformed into his centaur form. The two battled fiercely; however, Karza gained the upper hand. The Baron was then challenged by the sudden manifestation of the Enigma Force as the Time Traveler and the two clashed, with the Traveler forcing Karza's transformation back into his human form. Karza, almost vanquished, summoned the power of the Worldcore Pit in his body Banks, but he was overcome by the mindshock and his energy persona was hurled into the Pit, leaving his battered armor empty and broken. However, he had only retreated into the atomic fires at the core of Homeworld encases in a black energy sphere.Karza's battered armor

(Micronauts I#14) - Bug, back on Kaliklak, was informed by a captured dog soldier of Baron Karza's recent death.

(Micronauts I#15 (fb) - BTS) - After Karza vanished back into the Microverse, Prometheus reappeared on Earth, apparently driven insane and left incoherent by his experiences.

(Micronauts I#22/2) - Slug was confronted by Argon in the abandoned Body Banks. Argon was now under the post-hypnotic spell placed when he was being genetically manipulated by Karza. Argon cryptically also suggested that Karza was not truly dead.

(Micronauts I#23/2) - The mind-controlled Argon then took Slug to Sandzone, where they met up with Shaitan who revealed Karza's control over Argon.

(Micronauts I#24/1) - In its psi-attack on the Micronauts, the sentient machine Computrex used images of Karza in an effort to defeat them.

(Micronauts I#25/1) - Mari reflected on her time as a royal and was concerned at the prospect that she might have been forced into a marriage union with Baron Karza. Elsewhere, S.H.I.E.L.D.'s ESPers, in probing the Microverse, detected a black sphere floating in lava. Arcturus began to recognize that Karza was rising again.

 

Karza's energy cocoon in the lava

 

(Micronauts I#25/2) - Slug and Pharoid journeyed to Aegypta and found the deserted remains of an early conquest of Karza's. Elsewhere, on the Homeworld sphere known as Primal Zone, Shaitan set into motion the resurrection of Baron Karza. The hypnotized Prince Argon was then forced into the lava pit through the incantations of the Faceless Priests. Argon impacted with the black sphere, thereby providing Karza with a new host body that he merged his mind with. Standing in his human form in his black armor, Karza reveled in his resurrection.

(Micronauts I#26/1) - Several months after his initial foray to Earth, Karza mentally breached the Spacewall, drawing on the power of the ESPers to generate a mind bridge. He took over one ESPer and transformed into his human armored form, quickly stealing the secret of the Enigma Force from the transfixed Arcturus. The suddenness of Karza's attack enabled him to mind-bind the Enigma Force, preventing the Time Traveler from being summoned to fight him. The ESPers recovered but were disintegrated by Karza's chest cannons, which also caused Mari to vanish back into the Microverse. Choosing to cause pain to the remaining Micronauts, Karza elected not to kill them so that they could witness his attempt to dominate both the Microverse and Earth. With that, he teleported away.Karza mind-binds the Enigma Force

(Micronauts I#26/2) - Mari reported Karza's resurrection and new alliance with Hydra to the gathered Planetary Council on Homeworld. The Council members reported on renewed attacks by rearmed forces that were subservient to Karza. However, Karza appeared on the main screen showing the Time Travelers - and with them the Enigma Force itself - bound to his will.

(Micronauts I#27) – Karza threatened the assembled heroes and boasted of his imminent conquest of two universes; however, he incorporated a subtle mind control message to subvert the will of those who saw his broadcasted message. Shaitan sought greater recognition and power alongside the Baron, but was dismissed by him and beaten with one of Karza's flying fists. Shaitan wanted murderous revenge against his brother, now King Acroyear, but the Baron instead proclaimed that vengeance against Acroyear would be his. So Shaitan began to plot against the despot. Karza then prepared an interdimensional transporter, created by Hydra agents under his directions, to invade Earth as it was beyond the reach of Spartak's Worldmind, with the plan being to then return to conquer the Microverse. Meanwhile, Arcturus told senior S.H.I.E.L.D. staff of Karza's brutality, with S.H.I.E.L.D. sources identifying Karza as being near Orlando, Florida. Dagon, a creation of Karza appearing as an Acroyear warrior, infiltrated the Micronauts. Elsewhere, Karza's forces and Microverse allies were transported to Earth and the theme park Fantasyworld, alongside Hydra shock troops, with the tyrant sure of their success. Karza then gloated over the captive Time Traveler and watched as the energy feeders painfully siphoned the Unipower so that the Baron could manipulate minds that had a predilection for evil. However, Shaitan alerted Karza to S.H.I.E.L.D.'s counterattack. Karza then stealthily approached the war zone and watched Arcturus Rann, who was actually hunting for the tyrant, from a nearby pinball machine. Karza's pawn, Dagon, aided in an attack on Biotron, severing the roboid's mind link with Rann, distracting him, and Karza blasted him with pure energy. Rann quickly recovered and flew at the Baron, ripping his helmet off to reveal Argon's visage as he transformed into his centaur form. Karza then blasted Rann with his eye beams, sending the hero into mind-shock, and slung the inert body onto his back and transported back to Hydra headquarters under Fantasyland, where he bound Rann next to the Time Traveler.

Karza in Argon's body

(Micronauts I#28) – Nick Fury called for reinforcements to help against the combined forces of Hydra and Karza, but the signal was jammed by Karza's psycho-seal. In the Microverse, Mari led a charge against Karza's Body Banks. Back on Earth, Karza eulogized to Rann and the Time Traveler before going off to join his armies in destroying S.H.I.E.L.D., but was suddenly stopped by an enraged King Acroyear. Meanwhile, Shaitan, feeling betrayed, turned against Karza and trapped the Baron's space fleet in hyperspace, but allowed the resistance forces from Microverse to travel to Earth to block Karza's assault. As Acroyear battled Karza, Shaitan claimed his royal heritage and summoned the Worldmind of Spartak to defeat Karza, knowing that it would destroy the Acroyear homeworld. However, his animated corpse could not wield the Worldmind and his body crumbled away. King Acroyear merged with the Worldmind and battled the Enigma Force-powered Baron, but interdimensionally apart from Spartak, resulted in the destruction of the planet. The newly-arrived Insectivorid, Queen Esmera of Kaliklak, unleashed her suicide sting and struck Argon's body housing Karza. Acroyear then summoned the full power of the Worldmind and apparently purged Argon of Karza's domination, blasting the ebon armor away to reveal Argon's naked body beneath. However, much had been sacrificed to defeat Karza. Furthermore, the evil tyrant's consciousness had only been heavily suppressed, not eliminated.

(Micronauts I#29-32) – Baron Karza's consciousness lay dormant inside Argon's mind.

(Micronauts I#33-44) – Karza's consciousness asserted its pervasive influence on Argon, as he took to wearing full body armor that he augmented to parallel Karza's black armor, outlawing the Micronauts and dispatching the Death Squad after them, reopening the Body Banks for the generation of Dog Soldiers and mutates (such as Huntarr), manufacturing alliances, encouraging the lowlies to gamble their organs, distracting the populace with violent games, increasing the harsh rule on Homeworld, and spurning love for the acquisition of greater power.

(Micronauts I#45-46) – Mari snuck into the Royal Place intending to kill her increasingly despotic brother. She was attacked by him, having turned himself into an energy being as Karza had done, showing his behavior to increasingly mirror Karza's.

(Micronauts I#47) – Mari noted that Homeworld's inhabitants worshipped giant statues of Argon, just as they once worshipped Karza.

(Micronauts I#48) – Karza continued his manipulation of Force Commander, with his speech, posture and penchant for genetic manipulation becoming more apparent.

Karza breaks out of the Force Commander armor

(Micronauts I#49) – Karza, still in Force Commander's armor, stood on a platform above the Arena alongside bride-to-be Belladonna (in Slug's body), Slug (in Belladonna's body) and Degrayde, before the masses who had packed into the Arena. Mari and newfound ally, Huntarr, sat disguised in the audience, as the Wedding Games began with the arrival of Acroyear, Bug and Pharoid in the Arena to face the monstrous spider-creature. Karza marveled at Degrayde's workmanship, with the scientist acknowledging Karza's tutelage. Standing guard, the Death Squad were suddenly attacked by Huntarr and Mari, and the assembled masses soon joined in attacking the Dog Soldiers and shouting for the downfall of Argon. Slug ripped of the Force Commander helmet, revealing the energy form inside. Argon's visage called out for forgiveness, but was silenced as Karza's will asserted itself completely, destroying Argon as Karza tore apart the white Force Commander armor from the inside out. The reborn tyrant reveled in anticipation of the impending combat with his nemesis, Arcturus Rann, who had just arrived in Bioship.

 

(Micronauts I#50) – Karza commanded Homeworld to kneel as all about him stood shocked and appalled. Bioship's sensors revealed the Baron to be mightier than ever. Karza then proclaimed that Argon's life-force and the deaths of those slain by him as Force Commander fed his evil. The despot sent a mind-probe at Rann, the only man he had ever feared because of Rann's link with the Enigma Force. Karza's ebon armor went rigid as he and Rann clashed telepathically in a mind-duel. Although repulsed by Rann's defense, Karza realized that the Micronaut no longer wielded the Enigma Force. Rann then flew into the arena along with Fireflyte to battle Karza. However, the self-proclaimed master of disaster had the throat of Lady Slug and Duchess Belladonna in each of his gauntlets and slew them both, before firing his chest cannons at the defiant Prince Pharoid, killing him too. The Micronauts engaged Karza's Death Squad in lethal combat. Margrace burst into the Arena with rebel reinforcements, but doubted a successful outcome to the battle with Karza. Having slain the Death Squad, the Micronauts charged at Karza, but the Baron embraced evil and mocked them. Karza blasted Acroyear down with his eyebeams and tried to strangle Bug with a mobile gauntlet, with Mari being shocked unconscious trying to remove the gauntlet. Rann attacked but was smashed down by Karza's powerful fists, after which he turned to the assembled rebels, blasting them with chest cannon fire and energy blasts, slaying also Margrace. At that point, Karza became distracted by Fireflyte, who was able to teleport the defeated Micronauts aboard Bioship. Karza fired an energy bolt from his glove but Bioship had already warped away. Amid the wreckage and corpses, Karza shouted triumphantly at the Micronauts' retreat.

Karza sends a mind-probe after Rann

 

 

 

 

 

 

Karza embraces evil

 

(Micronauts I#51) – Karza dispatched Dog Soldier pursuit-craft after the fleeing Micronauts, but were ultimately destroyed by the vengeful heroes. Mari then asked Bioship to probe Homeworld to see what havoc Karza was wreaking there. The Micronauts were shocked to see that the reborn tyrant had unleashed an unprecedented wave of destruction and carnage, using Dog Soldiers to eliminate the rebels on Homeworld. Those who were taken alive were cut up for the Body Banks, with adult women taken away to be forced to breed and children taken away to be transformed into Dog Soldiers. Mass graves were created and the dead bulldozed in.

(Micronauts II#15 (fb) - BTS) - Karza was able to construct many copies of the Prometheus Pit and installed one on every sphere of Homeworld, thereby facilitating the rapid deployment of the destructive forces under his command.

(Micronauts I#52) – Baron Karza traveled to Seazone with Degrayde onboard the deadly Sunscope, a hovering platform with a powerful solar lens that magnified the sun's energy. The Merhumans of Seazone had resisted Karza's tyranny and so the Baron sought to destroy them as an example to any who would defy him. Karza stood calmly as the Sunscope boiled the waters, killing the entire Merhuman race and all the sealife in the water, leaving nothing but desert. The two killers then departed on the Sunscope, with the only survivor left being the human Lady Coral, who swore revenge against Karza. Karza then told Degrayde that he wanted to eradicate any rebellious races who would resist him. Elsewhere, the Micronauts' attempt to gain an ally in the Acroyears failed as the warrior race chose neutrality waiting for their new king to be born.

(Micronauts I#53) – Huntarr and Marionette sought new allies to aid in their war against Karza and targeted Prisonworld. Meanwhile, back on Homeworld, the slaughter under Karza's command continued. Karza observed Degrayde torture and mutilate a rebel who had too strong a will to be transformed into a Dog Soldier. Karza then deliberated over whether to kill the rebel or have him shipped off to Prisonworld, where he had established newly Body Banks and dispatched new troops to subjugate its inhabitants.

Karza acquires the Enigma Force

(Micronauts I#54) – With the aid of the mutated G-Men, Karza's Dog Soldiers captured Acroyear, Bug, Huntarr, Mari and Prisonworld's main mob leader, Little D. Together with a fellow prisoner, Murder-1, they were brought before the robot judge, Tri-Bunal, and sentenced to death. Little D then spoke of the importance of liberty, when Karza's malevolent visage suddenly appeared on all the surrounding holovid screens, ridiculing their belief in freedom. The six rebels defied Karza and they battled free, although Murder-1 was killed; however his example served as a unifying force to the various mobs on Prisonworld, who then rebelled and fought for freedom against Karza's forces.

(Micronauts I#55) – Traveling on the astral plane, Arcturus encountered Karza at the Temple of Time, with both seeking help from the Time Travelers - Rann asking them to intercede to stop Karza, and Karza desiring their neutrality so as not to impede his absolute conquest of the Microverse. Karza punished Rann, having already secured their neutrality. The Baron then returned to his corporeal body on Homeworld. Soon after, Karza gazed at the people being herded into the Body Banks to increase his army against the Microverse and commented on his own mortality to Degrayde, who, in turn, secretly conspired to replace the tyrant. Karza also sensed a presence in the mass of people whose strength of spirit surpassed the others; this was actually Huntarr who attacked Karza's forces after seeing his mutated mother and tortured sister die before him. An enraged Huntarr later informed his fellow Micronauts of Karza's carnage.

(Micronauts I#56 - BTS) - Karza dispatched the battle beetles to ravage the planet of Kaliklak.

(Micronauts I#56) - With his body watched secretly by Degrayde, Karza meditated and entered the time-stream to journey to the Temple of Time, where he again met his opposite, Commander Rann. Karza requested the Time Travelers to grant him their power, but Rann opposed this. In order to remain impartial, the Time Travelers granted both Rann and Karza access to the Enigma Force, with the Baron's armor transformed into white. Realizing that accepting the godhood received from the Enigma Force resulted in altered perceptions so that conquest was no longer his motivator, Karza rejected the gift and chose to remain a man. Awakening back on Homeworld, Karza dismissed the Shadow Priests and returned to his dreams of power over the Microverse.

(Micronauts I#57) - In an effort to show the Microverse that resistance was futile, Karza sought to destroy the planet of Never-Summer using his Sunscope and commanded Degrayde to set this up while he oversaw the whole operation. He briefly sought the submission of those who remained free of his grasp, namely Prisonworld, Kaliklak and the Acroyear fleet, but they all spurned him. Karza received Captain D'ark's warning of the Micronauts' approach, but he dismissed this, although he still ordered Degrayde to engage them using the dog soldiers. Karza teleports away in his centaur formThe Never-Summer native, Ojeeg, then reverently approached Karza and Degrayde and the Baron was amused. Once the Sunscope was activated, Ojeeg could see the destruction wrought by these two would-be gods and attacked them, only to be blasted away by Karza's chest cannons and then discarded. The Micronauts then engaged Karza in battle, while Ojeeg successfully destroyed the Sunscope. Seeing his work come undone, Karza phased into his turbo centaur form and teleported away.

(The X-Men and the Micronauts#1) – The devastation of the frontier worlds on the Microverse’s fringe resulted in an unlikely alliance as Baron Karza joined the Micronauts onboard Bioship to investigate the trouble. The Micronauts engaged the newly aggressive D’arnellians alongside the Dog Soldiers, while Karza stayed on Bioship ordering it to locate the unknown enemy, the Entity. Karza was awed by the sheer power displayed as the Entity obliterated the D’arnellians' planet. The powerful enemy detected Karza and the Bioship; panicked, the Baron ordered the ship to flee and they warped away, arriving in the Danger Room where Prof. Xavier was about to test the New Mutants’ abilities. Karza then attacked the young mutants whose lack of experience were no match for Karza’s centuries of training. However, Storm, Colossus, Wolverine and Nightcrawler intervened, with Ariel (Kitty Pryde) phasing through the Baron's diminutive form, although this caused the consciousness of the two to exchange bodies. The Micronauts then arrived in Bioship and exchanged information with the X-Men. With Kitty's mind trapped inside his armor, Karza pretended to be the mutant girl, although her pet dragon, Lockheed, detected the change. Bioship utilized its reduca-beam to shrink the X-Men before returning to the Microverse with them.

(The X-Men and the Micronauts#2) - Traversing the Spacewall that divided the Microverse from Earth, Bioship approached Homeworld carrying with it the X-Men and Baron Karza (whose consciousness was still inside Ariel) and the Karza armor (which had trapped Kitty's persona, but was still animated by Karza's will). The X-Men were appalled at the brutality that Karza had wrought on Homeworld. Speaking through his armor, Karza pledged neither betrayal nor deception to the X-Men and told them of the Entity's incredible power. Karza attempted to get Ariel away from the X-Men but was unsuccessful and so mentally commanded his armor to teleport away to the Body Banks of Homeworld. There, Degrayde inspected the inanimate armor but was suddenly assailed by a holographic astral projection from Karza commanding that he treat it with respect and that the Body Banks be restored to full operations to generate new legions to replace those lost in the battle with the Entity. Elsewhere, Bioship used its telepathic link with Rann to find him, and took Karza (in Ariel's body) and the X-Men there, but they were micro in size compared to the Earth-sized X-Mansion generated by the Entity, who appeared as Professor X and was flanked by the Micronauts dressed in early X-Men uniforms. Controlled by the Entity, the Micronauts felled the tiny X-Men, and Ariel's body was knocked unconscious. With that, Kitty Pryde's consciousness emerged dominant inside Karza's armor back on Homeworld.

(The X-Men and the Micronauts#3) - Revived and under the control of the Entity, Karza (still inside Ariel's body), along with the X-Men and the Micronauts, attacked a dog soldier outpost, slaughtering the soldiers, with Karza seeming to enjoy the brutality. The Entity then obliterated the outpost, sending the message via the recorder Archivist, as he teleported himself and his slaves away. Elsewhere, Kitty Pryde began to discover the ebon armor's awesome capabilities. Meanwhile, the Entity transported the others into a prison in his citadel, but placed Ariel's now scantily robed form on a lounge. His psi-shields still blocking the Entity, Karza resisted his enemy's amorous advances to Ariel's body and used the Entity's short sword to stab him in the back when he was distracted combating Xavier on the astral plane. Having escaped, Karza found the others, who had likewise escaped, and trained a gun sight on Storm, wanting to slay all those that impeded his quest for absolute power in the Microverse.

(The X-Men and the Micronauts#4) - Karza fired at his nemesis, Arcturus Rann, but Colossus was able to deflect the blow. Nightcrawler instantly teleported to the attacker but Karza used Pryde's phasing ability to escape. Meanwhile, Ariel had commandeered Karza's battle fleet, using Karza's armor as disguise, and attacked the Entity's planet before teleporting down to the surface. There she found Karza skulking in her body and used one of the flying gauntlets of Karza's armor to stop the tyrant from escaping. Just then, the collected teams of the X-Men and the Micronauts burst through and Kitty had to quickly explain the body-switching problem. Xavier, now trapped in the Entity's wounded body, confirmed it and Wolverine noted Karza's lack of complete control over Ariel's mutant powers. However, Degrayde had commanded the battle fleet to resume its attack on the Entity's planet, seeking to eliminate Karza and his temporary allies in one swoop, but was instead destroyed by a powerful mind-blast from the Entity that obliterated the fleet, with Bioship rescuing the X-Men, Micronauts and Karza, before passing through a rift in space to arrive back at the real X-Mansion. Meanwhile, Karza had Bioship fashion a new and darker costume for Ariel's body, but they were suddenly attacked by the New Mutants, who were being controlled by the Entity (now housed in Xavier's corporeal body). Kitty's pet dragon, Lockheed, scattered the young mutants, but then attacked Ariel's form as it sensed Karza's evil presence in her body. However, the Entity, seeking revenge, commandeered their bodies and tried to force Ariel to phase into Karza's armor and rematerialize, and thus destroy them both. The Micronaut, Fireflyte, came to their aid and the two separated, with Karza teleporting back to the Microverse (presumably dispatched by Fireflyte's warping powers).

Karza slain

(Micronauts I#58) - Arriving back on Homeworld, the Micronauts tracked Karza back to the Body Banks, where he had already killed Lady Coral of Seazone and all the people of Homeworld, and created the Unmen, which had been bred for their savagery. The Micronauts beat them before engaging Karza in direct battle. The despot fired his chest cannons, injuring Huntarr, then launched his gauntlets at Marionette, but these were downed by Bug and Acroyear. Marionette charged at Karza, who had morphed into his centaur form. Rann, knowing that Karza had sacrificed his invincibility when he chose humanity over godhood, fired his pistol and breached the tyrant's black armor. Marionette then dealt the final death blow and plunged her short sword into Karza's exposed chest. The Baron then fell lifeless away. Word quickly spread through the Microverse and a fleet soon assembled to check the tyrant's corpse and make sure that he was dead. However, Karza's genocidal slaughter would soon lead to the Pain Wave that threatened to destroy the Microverse.

(Micronauts I#59) - The Micronauts left the unburied corpse of Karza behind and sought to remember the people of Homeworld outside the context of Karza's reign.

(Micronauts II#19) - To save the entire Microverse, the Micronauts (Acroyear, Biotron, Bug, Fireflyte, Huntarr, Marionette, Arctururs Rann, Robotron, Scion, Solitaire) sought out one of Karza's Prometheus Pits that would send them out, healing the pain wrought by Karza's genocide and generating the rebirth of Homeworld. However, the Pit they accessed had become malignant and malformed those who entered it, until Rann donned a spare suit of Karza's armor, ordering it to subside. Rann then revealed that Karza had imbued part of his technology with himself. However, Rann became corrupted, seeking to stop the Micronauts' final sacrifice so that the Pain Wave would engulf the Microverse.

(Micronauts II#20) - Rann, now possessed by Karza's spirit that had imbued itself in the armor, undermined the Micronauts' efforts. Marionette finally pushed Rann-Karza into the Prometheus Pit; this led to Homeworld's salvation, but necessitated all the Micronauts' sacrifice yet ended Karza's malignant influence.

(Captain Marvel III#6 (fb)) - A reborn Baron Karza, now calling himself the Baron, allied himself with Thanos in an effort to destroy all the subatomic realities, but the two megalomaniacs were thwarted by the Microns and various X-Men. A massive amount of energy caused all the micro realms to merge as one.

Comments: Marvel version created by Bill Mantlo (writer), Michael Golden (penciler) & Josef Rubinsten (inker).

Baron Karza was a licensed character from the Mego Corporation, which is no longer held by Marvel, so - even as the Baron - he is unlikely to reappear. Perhaps it could be said that he was obliterated by the merging of microverses?

Karza's armor underwent slight modifications with different artists, notably the mouth-guard. This can be attributed to upgrades in the armor, similar to Iron Man.

When Baron Karza was resurrected by Shaitan, he was somehow able to transform Argon's centaur form to a black armored biped shape, indicating a physical transformation with the mental takeover.

It was noted in the letters section of Micronauts I#50 that Homeworld's language had no "z" sound; it was actually "th" in this case, making the pronunciation of the Baron's name as "Kartha".

Butch Guice in Karza armor

Micronauts I#50 showcases Karza's incredible armor, his ruthless and murderous ferocity, plus a climbing body count of support characters. Here, Karza single-handedly tackled and defeated the Micronauts, almost killing them all in the process.

An image of the Karza toy can be found here . One version of the toy was held together by magnets, which may explain some of the capabilities of Karza's formidable armor.

It would seem that the Karza armor is available for hire, with one of the main Micronauts artists, Butch Guice, appearing in it (at right).

 

Profile by Grendel Prime and Snood.

Clarifications:

Baron Karza should not be confused with:

Baron Karza has no known connections to:

The caped Karza

images:
Micronauts II#15 cover (main)
Micronauts I#50, p24, panel 3 (red concussive eyebeams)
Micronauts I#50, p28, panel 4 (chest cannons)
Micronauts I#56, p19, panel 3 (head)
Micronauts I#38, p7, panel 1 (green glider)
Micronauts I#25/2, p19, panel 5 (transferring mind to armor)
Micronauts I#58, p20, panel 2 (firing gauntlets)
Micronauts I#11, p5, panel 3 (turbo centaur form)
Micronauts I#12, p1, panel 4 (battered and empty armor)
Micronauts I#25/2, p20, panel 3 (sphere in lava)
Micronauts I#26, p13, panel 2 (pink mind-bind eyebeams)
Micronauts I#28, p9, panel 3 (centaur – Argon)
Micronauts I#49, p30 (breaking out of Force Commander armor)
Micronauts I#50, p23, panel 3 (undying evil)
Micronauts I#50, p4, panel 3 (launching mind-probe energy form)
Micronauts I#56, p18, panel 2 (white Enigma armor)
Micronauts I#57, p42, panel 1 (centaur leaping)
Micronauts I#59 cover (sword in chest)
Micronauts I#56, inside back cover (Guice in armor)
Marvel Age#55, p7 (red cape - recolored from MN I#)


Micronauts I#1-2 (January-February, 1979) - Bill Mantlo (writer), Michael Golden (pencils), Josef Rubinsten (inks), Al Milgrom (credited) & Bob Hall (cited in Micronauts Special Edition#1) (editors)
Micronauts I#3 (March, 1979) - Bill Mantlo (writer), Michael Golden (pencils), Josef Rubinsten (inks), Al Milgrom (editor)
Micronauts I#5-7 (March-July, 1979) - Bill Mantlo (writer), Michael Golden (pencils), Josef Rubinsten (inks), Al Milgrom (editor)
Micronauts I#8 (August, 1979) - Bill Mantlo (writer), Michael Golden (pencils), Bob McLeod (inks), Al Milgrom (editor)
Micronauts I#9-11 (September-November, 1979) - Bill Mantlo (writer), Michael Golden (pencils), Al Milgrom (inks), Al Milgrom (editor)
Micronauts Annual#1 (1979) - Bill Mantlo (writer), Steve Ditko (pencils & inks), Allen Milgrom (editor)
Micronauts I#14-15 (February-March, 1980) - Bill Mantlo (writer), Howard Chaykin (pencils), Al Milgrom (inks/editor)
Micronauts I#22 (October, 1980) - Bill Mantlo (writer), Pat Broderick (pencils), Armando Gil (inks), Louise Jones (editor)
Micronauts I#23 (November, 1980) - Bill Mantlo (writer), Pat Broderick (pencils), Danny Bulanadi (inks), Louise Jones (editor)
Micronauts I#24-26 (December, 1980-February, 1981) - Bill Mantlo (writer), Pat Broderick (pencils), Armando Gil (inks), Louise Jones (editor)
Micronauts I#27-31 (March-July, 1981) - Bill Mantlo (writer), Pat Broderick (pencils), Danny Bulanadi (inks), Louise Jones (editor)
Micronauts I#32 (August, 1981) - Bill Mantlo (writer), Pat Broderick (pencils), Danny Bulanadi (inks), Louise Jones & Tom DeFalco (editors)
Micronauts I#33-34 (September-October, 1981) - Bill Mantlo (writer), Pat Broderick (pencils), Danny Bulanadi (inks), Tom DeFalco (editor)
Micronauts I#35 (November, 1981) - Bill Mantlo (writer), Val Mayerick (pencils), Danny Bulanadi (inks), Tom DeFalco (editor)
Micronauts I#36 (December, 1981) - Bill Mantlo (writer), Keith Giffen (pencils), Danny Bulanadi (inks), Tom DeFalco (editor)
Micronauts I#37 (January, 1982) - Bill Mantlo (writer), Keith Giffen & Greg LaRoque (pencils), Danny Bulanadi (inks), Tom DeFalco (editor)
Micronauts I#38 (February, 1982) - Bill Mantlo (writer), John Garcia (pencils), Danny Bulanadi (inks), Al Milgrom (editor)
Micronauts I#39 (March, 1982) - Bill Mantlo (writer), Steve Ditko (pencils), Danny Bulanadi (inks), Al Milgrom (editor)
Micronauts I#40-45 (April-September, 1982) - Bill Mantlo (writer), Gil Kane (pencils), Danny Bulanadi (inks), Al Milgrom (editor)
Micronauts I#46 (October, 1982) - Bill Mantlo (writer), Luke McDonnell (pencils), Danny Bulanadi (inks), Al Milgrom (editor)
Micronauts I#47 (November, 1982) - Bill Mantlo (writer), Mike Vosburg (pencils), Danny Bulanadi (inks), Al Milgrom (editor)
Micronauts I#48-51 (December, 1982-March, 1983) - Bill Mantlo (writer), Butch Guice (pencils), Danny Bulanadi (inks), Al Milgrom (editor)
Micronauts I#52 (May, 1983) - Bill Mantlo (writer), Butch Guice (pencils), Danny Bulanadi (inks), Ralph Macchio (editor)
Micronauts I#53 (July, 1983) - Bill Mantlo (writer), Butch Guice (pencils & inks), Ralph Macchio (editor)
Micronauts I#54 (September, 1983) - Bill Mantlo (writer), Butch Guice (pencils), Kelly Jones (inks), Bob Harras (editor)
Micronauts I#55 (November, 1983) - Bill Mantlo (writer), Butch Guice (pencils), Kelley Jones & Sam Grainger (inks), Bob Harras (editor)
Micronauts I#56 (January, 1984) - Bill Mantlo (writer), Butch Guice (pencils), Kelley Jones & Sam Grainger (inks), Bob Harras (editor)
Micronauts I#57 (March, 1984) - Bill Mantlo (writer), Butch Guice (pencils), Kelley Jones & Sam Grainger (inks), Ralph Macchio (editor)
Micronauts Special Edition#4 (March, 1984) - collected Micronauts I#8-10 and featured a short opening essay by Bill Mantlo called The Enigma of the Enigma Force.
The X-Men and the Micronauts#1 (January, 1984) - Chris Claremont & Bill Mantlo (writers), Butch Guice (pencils), Bob Wiacek (inks), Bob Budiansky (editor)
The X-Men and the Micronauts#2 (February, 1984) - Bill Mantlo & Chris Claremont (writers), Butch Guice (pencils), Bob Wiacek & Kelley Jones (inks), Bob Budiansky (editor)
The X-Men and the Micronauts#3-4 (March-April, 1984) - Chris Claremont & Bill Mantlo (writers), Butch Guice (pencils), Bob Wiacek (inks), Bob Budiansky (editor)
Micronauts I#58 (May, 1984) - Bill Mantlo (writer), Butch Guice (pencils), Kelley Jones (inks), Ralph Macchio (editor)
Micronauts I#59 (August, 1984) - Bill Mantlo (writer), Butch Guice (pencils), Bruce Patterson (inks), Ralph Macchio (editor)
Micronauts II#15 (December, 1985) - Peter B. Gillis (writer), Kelley Jones (pencils), Danny Bulandi (inks), Ralph Macchio (editor)
Micronauts II#19 (April, 1986) - Peter B. Gillis (writer), Howard Bender (pencils), Danny Bulandi (inks), Ralph Macchio (editor)
Micronauts II#20 (May, 1986) - Peter B. Gillis (writer), Kelley Jones (pencils), Danny Bulandi (inks), Ralph Macchio (editor)
Captain Marvel III#6 (June, 2000) - Peter David (writer), Chriscross (pencils), Anibal Rodriguez (inks), Tom Brevoort (editor)


Last updated: 08/16/12

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