Membership: Two unidentified men (maybe more on the submarine; see comments)
Affiliations: They Who Wield Power
Enemies: Hercules, Spider-Man (Peter Parker)
Base of Operations: Manhattan, New York City
First Appearance: Marvel Team-Up I#28 (December, 1974)
Powers/Abilities: Without their robotic exo-skeletons the City-Stealers were two normal men. While wearing the exo-skeletons they were around 12 feet tall and possessed superhuman strength (level unknown) and durability. The exo-skeletons could also shoot energy blasts from their hands. Each exo-skeleton was controlled from a small room inside its chests. Aside from the exo-skeletons the City-Stealers used earth-digging destructo-rays and a special nuclear submarine to further their plans.
(Incredible Hulk II#241 (fb) - BTS) - They Who Wield Power supplied the terrorists, that would become the City-Stealers, with exo-skeletons, earth-digging destructo-rays and a special nuclear submarine.
(Marvel Team-Up I#28 (fb) - BTS) - The City-Stealers planned to destroy the foundation of Manhattan Island and pull it out to the sea where it would stay until they were paid two billion dollars from the governor of New York State.
(Marvel Team-Up I#28) - *BRUUMMBLE!* The City-Stealers started their evil scheme and Manhattan began to shake. Hercules and Spider-Man saved some people and then went to search for the source of the mysterious earthquakes. Both found one of the City-Stealers with a destructo-ray and attacked. But it didn't take the City-Stealers long to knock both heroes unconscious and tie them up with metal chains. The City-Stealers continued with their plan until Hercules broke his chains only to be knocked out again by an energy blast. Spider-Man was interested in the City-Stealers' plans and one of them told him everything. He lifted up Spider-Man and told him that he could do nothing about it. In that moment Spider-Man broke his chains as well and attacked the City-Stealer. (According to Hercules Manhattan Island was already pulled to the sea in that moment.) Hercules got to his feet and saw Spider-Man fight the City-Stealer. He tackled the giant right against one of the destructo-rays, which was destroyed by the impact. Together the heroes then went after the other City-Stealer. Spider-Man blinded him with his net and then knocked him off his feet. Spider-Man opened a plate on the exo-skeleton's plate and inside was the controller of the exo-skeleton, who was really afraid that their bosses would be angry with them because they had failed. (Hercules then claimed to have towed back Manhattan Island with a steel chain.). The terrorists and their exo-skeletons were brought to the surface by Spider-Man and Hercules, where the heroes were soon harassed by New York's mayor. The submarine with the City-Stealers' allies escaped.
Comments: Created by Gerry Conway, Jim Mooney & Vince Colletta.
This was one of the baddest comics of its time. Congratulations!
The two guys inside the armor were shown in one panel, but the image is pretty bad (at least in the German version).
Who was on the submarine? Was it remote-controlled by the two guys inside the armor or was it controlled by more terrorists?
Somewhere Marvel or even Conway admitted that the story seen in Marvel Team-Up I#28 was told by Hercules, who over exaggerated a little bit.
I don't know where this was originally stated, but in Marvel Legacy: 1970s Handbook it is also part of the They Who Wield Power entry.
Actually their plot was stopped by Hercules when he braced himself against the foundations and absorbed the shockwaves caused by the destructo-rays. The island was never severed from its foundation and it was never pulled to the sea by the submarine. Actually it is impossible to do this and if they were really able to pull it off the only happy person in Manhattan would've been Mr. Fish and that would stink.
Incredible Hulk II#241 reveals the involvment of They Who
Wield Power, Hercules' boasting and the way he stopped the City-Stealers' scheme.
Profile by Markus Raymond.
The City-Stealers should be distinguished from:
These rays were used by the City-Stealers to destroy the foundation of Manhattan Island. One was destroyed when a City-Stealer fell onto it. The other rays' shockwaves were absorbed by Hercules.
Like all the technology used by the City-Stealers the rays were given to them by They Who Wield Power.
--Marvel Team-Up I#28
The City-Stealers were going to pull Manhattan Island into the sea with this submarine. It escaped with its unidentified crew.
It was given to the City-Stealers by They Who Wield Power.
--Marvel Team-Up I#28
images: (without ads)
Marvel Team-Up I#28, p8, pan4 (City-Stealer and earth-digging destructo-ray)
Marvel Team-Up I#28 (December, 1974) - Gerry Conway (writer), Jim Mooney (pencils), Vince Colletta (inks), Roy Thomas (editor)
Last updated: 01/15/06.
Any Additions/Corrections? please let me know.
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