Tyrannus fires the Cobaltronic Ray


Classification: Terrestrial technology

Creator: Unrevealed (see comments)

User/Possessors: Tyrannus (see comments)

First Appearance: Fantastic Four I#128 (November, 1972)

Powers/Abilities/Functions: The Cobaltronic Ray was a hand held gun that could fire red energy rings to tightly bind the victim. The power of its beam could be increased to stun super-powered individuals including Nova. Tyrannus also threatened to atomize the Fantastic Four with it, but such power was never demonstrated.


(Fantastic Four I#128) - Tyrannus was in the thrall of the Mole Man, who planned to take over the subterranean levels worldwide with the assistance of Kala. Although betrothed to the Mole Man, she secretly desired Tyrannus and freed him. Tyrannus took his Cobaltronic Ray and fired it at the Mole Man, with the gun's energy rings surrounding his body, constricting his movement. Tyrannus next turned the gun on Kala, also binding her in the red energy rings, declaring that he alone would rule the underground realms. The Human Torch, the Invisible Girl and the Thing then attempted to tackle Tyrannus but he threatened to atomize them with the gun until Mr. Fantastic snatched the weapon from the villain's hands, wrapping his body around Tyrannus until being repelled by the foe's electri-blast, losing his grip on Tyrannus (and presumably the gun as well – see comments).

(Nova I#5) - After completing the Earth-Shaker, "Tyrannus" (actually a mutated Subterranean with the villain's mental essence) used the Cobaltronic Ray to herd his Subterranean minions into the giant robot, blasting at them to gain their compliance,before heading up to the surface world in the machine, carrying the gun with him. The Earth-Shaker emerged in New York City's Central Park, where it clashed with the hero called Nova (Richard Rider). Nova was eventually pulled inside the mammoth mechanoid, where he was confronted by "Tyrannus," who fired a blast from the Cobaltronic Ray at him that rendered him unconscious, allowing the human rocket to be taken prisoner. The hero later escaped and again faced the villain, who fired another blast from the ray, but Nova flew to avoid the beam, then grabbed hold of the barrel of the gun and crushed it in his hand. Disarmed, "Tyrannus" was persuaded to return to his domain.

Comments: Created by Roy Thomas (writer), John Buscema (pencils) and Joe Sinnott (inks).

It would seem that the gun was initially left behind by Mr. Fantastic in the caverns as he and his team rushed to escape, and was later recovered behind-the-scenes by "Tyrannus".

The "Tyrannus" who appeared in the Nova story was a substitute. At the time, the real Tyrannus was suffering from advanced aging after surviving his battle with the FF and he was involved in the machinations of They Who Wield Power as "Des".  "Des" sent his mental essence into one of his Subterraneans, giving that chosen minion the form of Tyrannus. After his defeat by Nova, Tyrannus returned his consciousness to El Dorado, leaving behind a bewildered Subterranean, who was torn apart by his angered fellows in Incredible Hulk II#241.

The Cobaltronic Ray, named in the Nova appearance, was probably leftover Deviant technology that Tyrannus had scavenged.  That said, Tony Stark's Cobalt Ray Weapon also fired a red beam that stunned, so maybe Tyrannus somehow copied it from Stark (or Stark's was derived from the same technology/physics).

The constrictive red rings from the FF story resemble the Crimson Bands of Cytorrak.

Profile by John Kaminski & Grendel Prime.

The Cobaltronic Ray has no known connections to:

images: (without ads)
Fantastic Four I#128, p17, pan2 (firing rings)
Nova I#5, p6, pan3 (firing beam)

Fantastic Four I#128 (November, 1972) - Roy Thomas (writer/editor), John Buscema (pencils), Joe Sinnott (inks)
Nova I#5 (January, 1977) - Marv Wolfman (writer/editor), Sal Buscema (pencils), Tom Palmer (inks)

Any Additions/Corrections? please let me know.

Last Updated: 09/18/13

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