Real Name: Sergei Krylov
Identity/Class: Human Mutate
Group Membership: None
Cobalt Man (Ralph Roberts),
Dire Wraiths (Fantasma, others), Doommaidens (Scorpia, Titania),
Igor Drenkov, Jack of Hearts, Caroline Le Fey, Maelstrom
(as Anomaly), Neutron, Nuke, Radioactive Man (Chen Lu),
Guardian, Umbral Dynamics;
Atlantean army, Mr. Ballantine,
from Below, Black Widow (Natasha Romanova), Defenders (Hellcat,
Hulk (Bruce Banner), Nighthawk,
Sub-Mariner), Eon, Kang, Mercs for Money (Deadpool, Domino, Gorilla Man/Ken Hale, Machine Man, Masacre, Negasonic Teenage Warhead), Nova (Richard Rider),
Phobos, Quasar (Wendell Vaughn), SHIELD,
Skull (Jim Scully), Dr. Druid,
Tanaka, Thing, Winter Guard (Darkstar, Fantasma, Powersurge,
Sibercat, Steel Guardian, Vanguard, Vostok);
Known Relatives: Marya Krylova (wife, deceased), Laynia Petovna (Darkstar, daughter, deceased), Nicolai Krylenko (Vanguard, son)
Aliases: Codename: Sergei; Man Who Glows (name used by Hulk), Prisutviye (Russian translation of his codename)
Base of Operations: Khystym, Siberia
Place of Birth: Minsk, Russia
First Appearance: Defenders I#52 (October, 1977)
Powers/Abilities: The Presence, who may be completely radioactive energy as his physical form post-irradiation has never been revealed, has his form contained by his golden body armor. Presence can become pure energy, shrinking in size, and manipulating his energy into force fields and energy blasts; he does not need to eat, sleep, drink, or breathe. Presence can fly at warp-speed, even through space, absorb radiation, has telepathic capabilities, and place others under his control by using his radiation to manipulate their forms, an act which grants them greater strength and savagery. Presence has suffered from periods of madness. He sometimes flies aboard his chair.
Weight: 165 lbs.
Eyes: Brown; (as Presence) solid white
Hair: Brown; (as Presence) unrevealed
(Incredible Hulk II#259 (fb) - BTS) - A brilliant nuclear physicist, Sergei Krylov accidentally irradiated himself and his pregnant young wife during an experiment. Sergei's wife died in childbirth, and Sergei was told that his children were also killed.
(Defenders I#63 (fb) - BTS) - Sergei was involved in the scientific research for a radioactive plague that ended up wiping out life in the village of Khystym, Siberia, due to a mistake in radioactive waste disposal. The area was too deadly for any to live in, being dubbed the Forbidden Zone.
(Defenders I#52 (fb) - BTS) - The Presence followed the career of brilliant neural doctor, Tania Belinsky, who acted as super hero Red Guardian at times. He grew to think of her as his perfect mate. When she spent an extended period in America, he arranged for her to be brought to him. Isolated and infamous, he became known as Codename: Sergei.
(Defenders I#44 - BTS) - Krylov had his agents contact Red Guardian, telling her that her family would be harmed unless she returned to Russia.
(Defenders I#49 - BTS) - Krylov's agent picked up Red Guardian at the airport.
(Defenders I#51 - BTS) - The agent drove Red Guardian toward Krylov, revealing to her that she was going to Codename: Sergei, news which shocked her immensely.
(Defenders I#52) - Red Guardian was brought to the Presence's massive base and donned her costume, including a control cowl that dulled her independent thought and a radiation robe that allowed her to be near the Presence. He announced to her that he planned to have her subjected to radiation treatments so that they could become higher beings together, even though the process would destroy much of Europe.
(Defenders I#53) - Presence and Red Guardian, her will still subjugated, spent a few weeks together, growing more fond of each other. Presence planned to subject her to a full nuclear explosion. Donning his radiation costume, he showed Red Guardian the bomb, initiating the countdown and embracing the explosion as it hit them.
(Defenders I#54) - Presence and Red Guardian clasped hands as they soaked in the radiation. They approached the Defenders (Hellcat, Hulk, Nighthawk, Sub-Mariner) and the Atlantean military, who had barely survived their ship crashing in the bomb's blast. Presence had been unaware that his radiation emissions had been poisoning the Atlantean people.
(Defenders I#55) - After repelling the Hulk with the equivalent of a small hydrogen bomb, Presence fired blasts at Nighthawk, the Atlantean military, and Sub-Mariner, taking few hits himself. The Hulk battled the attacking Behemoth from Below, and it slowly toppled, threatening to crush all beneath it. Presence fired a powerful nuclear blast at the creature, obliterating it. Presence planned to kill the heroes until Red Guardian, finally in control of herself, told him she chose her friends over his love, causing him to depart in sadness.
(Defenders I#61) - Presence, despairing over Red Guardian's rejection, spent time in isolation in the Forbidden Zone, reflecting on how he'd achieved ultimate power and knew many state secrets, including the one behind the zone, yet he still felt aimless without Red Guardian.
(Defenders I#62) - Presence found the radiation there had created a new lifeform, the "Slime Creature", and that the massive creature there hungered and sought to expand.
(Defenders I#63) - Presence watched the creature form into a giant amoeba-like state, reflecting on his mistakes. He fired a radiation burst at the creature, seeking to stop it, and not realizing that the government suspected he was raising the menace. The amoeba drained the Presence's energy and pulled it inside himself, beginning to feed on his energy.
(Defenders I#65) - Presence noted that Red Guardian had tried to rescue him from inside the creature. Grasping her hand, the two shared power and burst free from the amoeba. He confessed he loved her and that she had awakened the humanity in him, then the two of them joined forces against the amoeba, though not overly successfully. Finally uniting as one being and giving off the force of a nuclear explosion, the amoeba was destroyed. Red Guardian agreed to stay with Presence, the two of them planning to make their home the Forbidden Zone.
(Incredible Hulk II#259 (fb) - BTS) - Presence and Red Guardian decided to fight against Professor Phobos, a man who had been draining the powers of many Soviet heroes over the previous decades. They began expanding the radioactive borders of the Forbidden Zone, using machinery to expand their influence, and causing the government to question their motives, sending some of their agents to investigate.
(Incredible Hulk II#258) - Red Guardian and Presence worked in the Forbidden Zone to contain the radiation that Professor Phobos was spreading. When they were distracted by a battle between the Hulk and the Soviet Super-Soldiers, the pair fired twin blasts at the Hulk and Ursa Major, reverting them to their human forms.
(Incredible Hulk II#259) - Presence and Red Guardian removed Hulk and Ursa Major's abilities to change into their monstrous forms. Presence read Ursa Major's mind and realized that Crimson Dynamo, Darkstar, and Vanguard were also nearby, and sensed a fourth personage, who they later learned was Professor Phobos. Presence and Red Guardian departed and focused their energies on their machines until Vanguard and Darkstar attacked them, holding them off with attacks and then in pitch blackness until they escaped. However, Professor Phobos turned the radiation machines on and held Presence and Red Guardian in stasis while draining their powers. Eventually Presence restored Hulk and Ursa Major's powers to them and Professor Phobos was defeated. Presence was shocked to learn that Vanguard and Darkstar were his children, whom he'd believed dead all those years, but he and Red Guardian had to absorb the excess radiation in the Forbidden Zone and departed for space to safely release the radiation, bidding his children farewell. During the battle, Red Guardian continually reminded Presence to not harm mortals.
(Quasar#23 (fb) - BTS) - While traveling through space, Presence and Red Guardian were picked up by the cosmic Stranger and placed in an artificial radioactive eco-system, aboard the Stranger's world, to thrive so that the Stranger could observe them. They, however, did not know who their captor was.
(Quasar#23 (fb)) - After months of looking for escape from their eco-system, Presence and Starlight were approached by another cosmic entity, Anomaly (actually Maelstrom), who claimed to be a fellow captive. Anomaly told Presence that a malevolent being named Eon threatened Earth, and advised them to destroy Eon if they ever made it back to Earth.
(Quasar#14) - The alien Over-Mind telepathically contacted dozens of captives on the Strangers' world, including Presence and Starlight, and freed them from their cells. Over-Mind was soon defeated.
(Quasar#19) - Presence and Starlight aided Jack of Hearts in moving several of the former captives toward Earth. They spent weeks traveling through space in a type of caravan. When Earth hero Quasar came to investigate, he was defeated by Jack of Hearts, and Presence wanted Quasar killed. He planned to get to Earth as soon as possible to fight and battle Eon.
(Quasar#20) - The Presence and Starlight broke Quasar's quantum sphere so that they could kill him, despite Jack of Hearts' protestations. The Presence blasted Quasar with a burst of energy that seemingly destroyed him, but Quasar actually quantum-jumped at the last moment. Thinking Quasar dead, Jack of Hearts turned on the Presence and Starlight, but Quasar actually quantum-jumped at the last moment. Thinking Quasar dead, Jack of Hearts turned on the Presence and Starlight, but a combined blast from the duo ruptured his containment suit. Realizing he was about to explode, Jack flew after them to destroy them, but his detonation only succeeded in hastening their journey to Earth. The Presence and Starlight broke into Four Freedoms Plaza, injuring Kenjiro Tanaka as they burst into the offices of Vaughn Security Systems. The Presence assigned Starlight to stand guard while he set off into the Eonverse to slay Eon. Unable to determine where Eon's vital organs were located, the Presence blasted randomly, but Eon had already alerted Quasar tot he danger and gave him his heart for protection. Quasar passed the heart along to the Thing while carrying a quantum-generated duplicate of the heart to trick Presence. After Quasar led the Presence into Earth's exosphere, the Presence switched to close combat in order to get past Quasar's energy-absorbing powers, but once he came in close Quasar opened a portal into a Quantum Zone then deposited the Presence there.
(Quasar#45) - After months of wandering the Quantum Zone, looking for escape, Presence saw a hand from a portal to the universe proper. Grasping on to that hand, he was pulled through by Neutron, member of the Imperial Guard who'd been stranded in space by Quasar. The two of them helped each other return to Earth, traveling through space through the following weeks, and Presence telepathically tracked Quasar, who was battling the extra-dimensional Antibodies. Presence cast the Antibodies aside and he and Neutron engaged Quasar in battle. Quasar flew Presence into space and maneuvered him into Neutron's path, which breached Presence's armor and the resulting explosion sent them all crashing to Earth, where the Shock Troop (Blazing Skull (Jim Scully), Dr. Druid, Living Mummy, and Shadowoman) arrived to aid Quasar.
(Quasar#46) - While the Shock Troop fought the Antibodies, Presence repaired his armor then moved against Quasar again, who distracted Presence with news of dissolution in the Soviet Union. After corroborating this story with several citizens, including Jonathan and Martha, Presence left the battle behind to return to his homeland, already entertaining thoughts of ruling the country.
(Marvel Comics Presents I#70) - Back in Khystym and reunited with Starlight (which Red Guardian had changed her codename to), Presence went slightly mad with power and desired more prestige and notoriety. After hearing reports of Black Widow and Darkstar in the U.S. (both Soviet heroines), Presence sent Starlight to retrieve them, holding her under mental sway, desiring to take them to wife (apparently having forgotten that Darkstar was his daughter). Starlight broke his control, however, and later returned to him.
(Quasar#60) - After Vanguard was killed in battle, Presence, Starlight, and Darkstar mourned him, and Presence learned that Quasar was ultimately responsible for the death. Furious, Presence and Darkstar departed to find Quasar, instructing Starlight to kill Quasar's family if they failed. They tracked Quasar for hours, waiting until all other superheroes were absent from the area, then attacked when Quasar was having an argument with Mr. Ballantine. They double-teamed against the hero, who soon had aid from Nova (Richard Rider), until Quasar surrendered. Presence and Darkstar fired one last mighty burst at Quasar, killing the hero and leaving only his Quantum bands behind. (In actuality, Quasar survived by flying away, and left light constructs of his bands behind). Presence and Darkstar returned to Khystym.
(Avengers III#43 (fb)) - Presence and Starlight continued visiting Vanguard's memorial site at the Kremlin privately, Presence reflecting on how his powers were not enough to save his son. Determined to try something, he sent Starlight away and shrunk himself into a small particle energy form, entering Vanguard's body, and realized that there was still a semblance of energy there. By sacrificing his own vast stores of energy, Presence managed to restore Vanguard to life, though it took Presence months to restore himself to natural form. He developed a plan to restore the Soviet Union to glory by transforming citizens into radioactive beings that he could control. He returned to Khystym and informed Starlight of his plan. He blasted the surrounding area with a spreading radioactive contagion that would kill all and put the formerly living creatures in his control.
(Avengers III#40 - BTS) - A group of SHIELD agents stationed in Slorenia, with Avengers Black Knight (Dane Whitman) and Firebird moved to investigate the radiation surge.
(Avengers III#41 - BTS) - Meanwhile, a team of Avengers (Captain America (Steve Rogers), Quicksilver, and Thor) joined the other two heroes in investigating.
(Avengers III#42) - Presence took control over the Winter Guard when they investigated. When the Avengers got near, Presence and his enslaved heroes moved to attack.
(Avengers III#43) - Presence hung back while the Avengers and the irradiated heroes battled and the Avengers managed to get the upper hand by using anti-radiation foam. Presence, with Starlight, moved in and destroyed their defenses, unleashing a blast that killed the Avengers and made them Presence's servants, all except Thor and Firebird, who had natural immunities against Presence's powers.
(Avengers III#44) - Thor and Firebird fought the irradiated heroes more until Presence turned his attack directly on Thor, who used his hammer to begin draining the Presence's energy. Presence soon found himself helpless as vast amounts of his life energy was being drained, and Starlight begged for his life, promising to restore all the irradiated heroes to their normal states. Thor agreed, and Starlight cradled Presence's fallen form before the two were arrested, unresisting.
(Avengers III#52) - Presence and Starlight were released from custody to fight against Kang's forces in the Soviet Union.
(Avengers III#53) - Presence and Starlight joined a contingent of Avengers in battling Kang in space. Presence planned on returning to Earth and renewing his plans, but Starlight talked him out of it. They fought their way into Kang's ship and watched it crash to the Earth, Kang finally defeated.
(Hulk: Winter Guard#1 (fb) - BTS) - Deep within his cell, the Presence heard of his daughter's death. When, months later, he heard of her potential resurrection, he investigated, taking with him the former spy Igor Drenkov, who the Presence had mutated into a giant monstrosity. He was attacked by the Winter Guard (Crimson Dynamo (Vadim), Darkstar (Sasha Roerich), Red Guardian (Anton), Ursa Major).
(Hulk: Winter Guard#1) - Furious at finding out that this Darkstar wasn't his daughter, the Presence threatened to reshape her at a molecular level while the heroes battled the monstrosity, but Red Guardian knocked Presence out long enough for Darkstar to destroy the beast, though Crimson Dynamo was killed in the battle. Before his defeat, though, Presence discovered that Laynia's psyche partially lived on through the medallion the current Darkstar wore, and that it was one of the conduits for her powers. He revealed this to Sasha, from his cell, when she demanded answers. Sasha was later killed in battle and another Darkstar was assigned to take her place.
(Darkstar and the Winter Guard#2) - From his cell in the Citadel, the Presence helped awaken Fantasma's true memories as a queen of the Dire Wraiths. He soon offered her an alliance.
(Darkstar and the Winter Guard#3) - Fantasma directed her Deathwings to attack until, while in the embrace of the Presence, she sensed the citadel had been breached by their enemies. Presence sensed Starlight, Vanguard, and Darkstar among them, but professed no regret and only enthusiasm for the future. They sent their hatchlings off to do battle. As the heroes attacked, Darkstar and Red Guardian were both killed. A furious Vanguard launched himself at the Presence, and Starlight narrowly saved Vanguard from Fantasma. Powersurge opened a gate to Limbo and Fantasma was thrown in, but she pulled Starlight with her as the gate closed. Darkstar was shockingly resurrected from the Darkforce, but the Presence still sought to destroy them all. Powersurge sacrificed his life and blew up the Citadel with Presence in it, allowing the Winter Guard to escape.
SECRET WARS III HAPPENED
(Deadpool and the Mercs for Money II#4 (fb) - BTS) - Caroline Le Fey, under the front of Umbral Dynamics, hired the Mercs for Money to kidnap Negasonic Teenage Warhead, Cobalt Man, and Radioactive Man. She then siphoned off their radiation and used it to resurrect the Presence.
(Deadpool and the Mercs for Money II#4) - In Bagalia, at Umbral Dynamics, Deadpool and the weakened Negasonic Teenage Warhead battled the Doommaidens, employed by Caroline Le Fey, until Presence himself attacked.
(Deadpool and the Mercs for Money II#5) - The Presence fought the Mercs for Money, including their allies who had just arrived, and they also fought the Doommaidens. Radioactive Man, Negasonic Teenage Warhead, Cobalt Man, and Nuke were freed. The battle ended when Negasonic absorbed all radiation there, dissipating Presence, whose armor clanked to the floor.
Comments: Created by David Kraft, Keith Giffen, and Chic Stone.
Presence received an entry in All-New Official Handbook of the Marvel Universe#8. Thank you to Prime Eternal and Snood for their help with this profile.
Profile by Chadman.
The Presence has no known connections to
Jonathan and Martha
(Quasar#46) - Jonathan and Martha were frightened when the Presence questioned them about the state of the Soviet Union.
(Incredible Hulk II#259 (fb) ) - A brilliant nuclear physicist, Sergei Krylov accidentally irradiated himself and his pregnant young wife during an experiment. Sergei's wife died in childbirth, and Sergei was told that his children were also killed.
(All-New Official Handbook of the Marvel Universe#8) - Sergei's wife's name revealed to be Marya.
--Incredible Hulk II#259 (Incredible Hulk II#259 (fb), All-New Official Handbook of the Marvel Universe I#8
Defenders I#53, p12, pan1 (main)
Defenders I#52, p7, pan4 (human form)
Avengers III#42, p22, pan2 (with irradiated servants)
Quasar#46, p14, pan1 (Jonathan and Martha)
Incredible Hulk II#259, p17, pan3 (Marya Krylova)
Defenders I#44 (February, 1977) - Gerry Conway, Roger Slifer, David Kraft (writers), Keith Giffen (penciler), Klaus Janson (penciler/inker), Gerry Conway (editor)
Defenders I#49 (July, 1977) - David Anthony Kraft (writer), Keith Giffen (penciler), Mike Royer (penciler/inker), Archie Goodwin (editor)
Defenders I#52 (October, 1977) - David Kraft (writer), Keith Giffen (penciler), Chic Stone (inker), Archie Goodwin (editor)
Defenders I#53 (November, 1977) - David Kraft (writer), Dave Cockrum, Keith Giffen, Mike Golden & Terry Austin (penciler/inker), Archie Goodwin (editor)
Defenders I#54 (December, 1977) - David Anthony Kraft (writer), Keith Giffen (penciler), Mike Golden (inker), Archie Goodwin (editor)
Defenders I#55 (January, 1978) - David Kraft (writer), Carmine Infantino (penciler), Klaus Janson (inker), Archie Goodwin (editor)
Defenders I#61 (July, 1978) - David Kraft (writer), Ed Hannigan (penciler), Bob Lubbers (inker), Jim Shooter (editor)
Defenders I#62 (August, 1978) - David Kraft (writer), Sal Buscema (penciler), Jim Mooney (inker), Bob Hall (editor)
Defenders I#63 (September, 1978) - David Kraft (writer), Sal Buscema (penciler), Jim Mooney (inker), Jim Shooter (editor)
Defenders I#64 (October, 1978) - David Kraft (writer), Sal Buscema (penciler), Don Perlin (inker), Bob Hall (editor)
Defenders I#65 (November, 1978) - David Kraft (writer), Don Perlin (penciler), Bruce D. (inker), Bob Hall (editor)
Incredible Hulk II#258 (April, 1981) - Bill Mantlo and Steven Grant (writers), Sal Buscema (penciler/inker), Allen Milgrom (editor)
Incredible Hulk II#259 (May, 1981) - Bill Mantlo (writer), Sal Buscema (penciler/inker), Allen Milgrom (editor)
Quasar#23 (June, 1991) - Mark Gruenwald (writer), Greg Capullo (penciler), Keith Williams (inker), Howard Mackie (editor)
Quasar#14 (September, 1990) - Mark Gruenwald (writer), Mike Manley (penciler), Dan Panosian (inker), Howard Mackie (editor)
Quasar#19-20 (February-March, 1991) - Mark Gruenwald (writer) Greg Capullo (penciler), Keith Williams (inker), Howard Mackie (editor)
Quasar#45 (April, 1993) - Mark Gruenwald (writer), Grant Miehm (penciler), David & Dan Day (inkers), Mike Rockwitz (editor)
Quasar#46 (May, 1993) - Mark Gruenwald (writer), Andy Smith (penciler), Ralph Cabrera (inker), Mike Rockwitz (editor)
Marvel Comics Presents I#70 (May, 1991) - Robert Campanella (writer), Larry Alexander (penciler), Jack Abel & Al Milgrom (inkers), Terry Kavanagh (editor)
Quasar#60 (July, 1994) - Mark Gruenwald (writer), John Heebink (penciler), Aaron McClellan (inker), Mike Rockwitz (editor)
Avengers III#40-43 (May-August, 2001) - Kurt Busiek (writer), Alan Davis (penciler), Mark Farmer (inker), Tom Brevoort (editor)
Avengers III#44 (September, 2001) - Kurt Busiek (writer), Manuel Garcia (penciler), Bob Layton (inker), Tom Brevoort (editor)
Avengers III#52 (May, 2002) - Kurt Busiek (writer), Ivan Reis (penciler), Rand Emberlin (inker), Tom Brevoort (editor)
Avengers III#53 (June, 2002) - Kurt Busiek (writer), Kieron Dwyer (penciler), Rick Remender (inker), Tom Brevoort (editor)
Hulk: Winter Guard#1 (February, 2010) - David Gallaher (writer), Steve Ellis (penciler/inker), Jordan White (editor)
Darkstar and the Winter Guard#2-3 (September-October, 2010) - David Gallaher (writer), Steve Ellis (penciler), Scott Hanna (inker), Jordan White (editor)
Deadpool and the Mercs for Money II#4-5 (December, 2016-January, 2017) - Cullen Bunn (writer), Iban Coello (artist), Jordan White (editor)
Last updated: 09/16/17
Any Additions/Corrections? please let me know.
Non-Marvel Copyright info
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