Membership: Boss, Garner, Hanley
Purpose: To peddle Plutonian death-ray technology on Earth
Affiliations: Plutonian king (mentioned only)
Enemies: Namor the Sub-Mariner
Aliases: "The World Destroyers" (in story title only); "you hoods," "those crazy spacemen" (as called by Namor)
Base of Operations: Their fortress, on a small island, off the New Jersey coastline
First Appearance: Sub-Mariner Comics#38/4 (February, 1955)
Powers/Abilities: Appearing as humans (unknown if this was their true form or a disguise), the three Fatalists displayed no unique abilities.
The Fatalists were equipped with an arsenal of death-ray weapons, in both pistol and rifle form. The weapons projected an energy beam that was lethal to any lifeforms it hit (although the Sub-Mariner was resilient enough to shrug off its effects). Garner was armed with a death-ray rifle, as a demonstrator model.
(Sub-Mariner Comics#38/4 (fb) - BTS) - The three Fatalists came to Earth from their home world of Pluto (see comments). They established a base and began their mission.
(Sub-Mariner Comics#38/4 (fb)) - The Fatalists first offered their death-ray to a U.S. senator. They demonstrated the infernal device by slaughtering an aged horse at a glue factory. But the shocked senator found the weapon too horrible and rejected their offer.
Failing in the United States, the Fatalists tried their salesmanship in Europe and in South America, but their efforts to sell the loathsome death-ray were met with repeated refusal--they even encountered resistance among the communist-dominated countries, where even the cold-blooded Reds were horrified by the results of the weapon.
(Sub-Mariner Comics#38/4 (fb) - BTS) - The Fatalists kidnapped the son of the prime minister of Latin Honduras, to use him in an extortion scheme.
(Sub-Mariner Comics#38/4) - While returning to their island headquarters by motorboat, the Fatalists spotted the Sub-Mariner sitting on the rocky shore of a small island near their base (where he was brooding, following an argument with his friend, Betty Dean). They went ashore and took the Atlantean prince by surprise, blasting him point-blank with the death-ray rifle. Thinking the Sub-Mariner dead, the truculent trio threw Namor in the sea, then continued to their island hideout.
Twenty minutes later, the Fatalists arrived at their fortress. The threatening threesome forced the prime minister's son to write a letter to his father, telling him that the Fatalists would kill the boy unless his father persuaded his government to purchase the death-ray.
The ransom note was delivered, and answered...with a refusal--the prime minister wrote back that the security of the world's population was more important than the life of his son.
The next morning, the Fatalists made preparations to carry out their threat. They stood the boy up against a seawall to execute him with the death-ray. But just as Garner fired, Namor came leaping out of the sea and into the ray's path, saving the boy's life! The arrant arms merchants were flabbergasted by the Sub-Mariner's apparent "return from death," and Namor explained to them that their mistake was throwing him into the sea--that's what revived him!
Namor punched Garner, disarming him of the death-ray, then flew and crashed into a supply hut, where he found a stockpile of the weapons. Emerging from the hut with a death-ray rifle in each hand, Namor ordered the three Fatalists to line up ("This is the end of the road! Killers like you have no right to live on Earth!"). Despite the trio's pleas for mercy, Namor squeezed the triggers. The three Fatalists disappeared in the glare of the blast...(see comments)
After flying the kidnapped boy back to his father, Namor soared high in the air again, and heard voices. He whipped his head around and saw the Fatalists being pulled up through the sky--the death-ray blast was sending them back to their home planet, and they knew they'd be in for trouble when they reported back to the Plutonian king.
The shocked Namor finally came to the realization that the Fatalists weren't Earthmen...
Comments: Created by Bill Everett (story and art).
...and immediately afterward, Namor had one of his infamous mood swings--he decided to renew his war with the surface world using the death-rays ("Look out world! Judgment Day's a-comin'!!!"). He took all of the weapons he could carry and destroyed the rest. One hour later, as he streaked homeward on the ocean bottom, Namor encountered a killer shark. He decided to fire a death-ray pistol at it to drive it off, but when he squeezed the trigger, all he got was an unresponsive CLICK. Namor discarded the useless weapons, figuring that the Fatalists had taken the power of the death-ray with them (...Yeah, or maybe the damn things just weren't water-proof).
In regards to the Fatalists' return trip to Pluto: It probably wasn't the death-ray itself which sent them back home, but a fail-safe teleportation mechanism set up as a contingency in the event that someone tried to use their weapons against them. The Fatalists never mentioned a spaceship or any other means of interplanetary transportation, so I guess they were teleported to Earth from their home planet (...and YES, I know Pluto is technically not classified as a planet anymore).
So I guess the Fatalists were planning to sell their weapons to all of the countries of Earth, to foment chaos and let mankind take care of wiping itself out, then their planet would invade and conquer what was left.
(Possibly the Fatalists have some connection to the aliens from Journey Into Mystery I#73/2 ("What Lurks on Channel X?"), wherein warriors from Pluto sent "Mister Jordan" to Earth to deliver a TV set that could mesmerize the viewers.)
(...or, since they spoke like gangsters, maybe the Fatalists were really some Skrulls from Kral who set up a base on Pluto.)
The splash page made this story look more exciting than it actually was--it featured Namor flying into orbit, opposing a horde of men in spacesuits, who were firing death-rays at the Earth... but the only alien invaders we got were these three bozos--guess I shouldn't have expected too much out of a 7-page story.
And a BIG Thank You to Brian Hirsch for the scans!
Profile by John Kaminski
The Fatalists have no known connections to:
Sub-Mariner Comics#38/4, p4, pan1 (main)
Sub-Mariner Comics#38 (February, 1955) - Bill Everett (writer/artist), Stan Lee (editor)
Last updated: 05/07/09.
Any Additions/Corrections? please let me know.
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