Real Name: Inapplicable
Identity/Class: Gestalt being
Group Membership: Team America, Thunderiders
Affiliations: Captain America (Steve Rogers), New Mutants (Mirage (Dani Moonstar), Sunspot (Roberto DeCosta), Karma (Xi’an Coy Manh), Cannonball (Sam Guthrie), Wolfsbane (Rahne Sinclair)), Tony Stark, Team America (Cowboy (Luke Merriweather), Honcho (James McDonald), R.U. Reddy (Winthrop Roan, Jr.), Wolf, Wrench (Leonard Hebb)), Thunderiders (Cowboy, Georgiana Hebb, R.U. Reddy, Thing (Ben Grimm), Sharon Ventura, Wolf, Wrench), Charles Xavier
Adreadite, A.I.M. (Advanced Idea Mechanics), Mr. Ashe,
of Texas, Agent Evens, Mr. Gutman, Hydra, Mad Thinker and
Gretch, unidentified hired killer, Mayhem Organization, Mr.
Silver Samurai, Adrian
Turner, Viper, Mr. & Mrs. Winderfield;
Known Relatives: Wolf, Georgiana Hebb, Dani Moonstar, Richie Champoulion (hosts)
Aliases: Dark Rider, Masked Marauder, Black Marauder
Base of Operations: Mobile worldwide
First Appearance: Captain America I#269 (May, 1982)
Powers/Abilities: The Marauder was a gestalt being. Summoned by members of Project: New Genesis, the Marauder contained all the abilities of whichever gestalt telepath was closest to each other. Often these energies were focused and possessed a host, leaving the person when the link was broken or when the need passed. If there was no host, then it was possible that the energies may have taken a physical form. The abilities usually shown by the Marauder were expert motorcycle riding, immense strength (equal to 10 men), computer hacking skills, burglary and superhuman endurance, as well as skills linked to the host’s interests, such as using a lariat. The Marauder’s motorcycle may have been a similar construct, as it was described as having almost supernatural capabilities, such as being able to clear a thousand-foot chasm with ease, seemingly able to repair itself, and obey the Marauder’s commands like a living thing.
(Team America#1) – The Marauder broke into a heavily guarded Hydra compound. Bypassing the security with ease, the strange being hacked into the main database and deleted all information relating to Project: New Genesis. The Marauder then escaped, driving away from the security and performing inhuman stunts in the process.
After surviving the attempts on their life, Honcho, R.U. Reddy and Wolf all separately found a note written by the Marauder. It directed them to a nearby garage where they all encountered each other for the first time.
The Marauder next appeared aboard Hydra’s blimp. Through unexplained circumstances, the Marauder sneaked on board the vessel and freed Reddy and “Pops” from the group. Crashing the blimp, both men escaped in the confusion, but found their rescuer gone when they turned around.
(Team America#2) – The Marauder appeared in the woods behind the unnamed hired killer. The Marauder silently slipped through the woods undetected and followed the assassin back to the Hydra base. Slipping inside, the Marauder ignored the guards and turned on the base’s intercom, an act that allowed the Hydra troops to learn that the higher ups were displeased with Agent Evens (the local field leader) and her efforts to stop Team America. The Marauder escaped with the killer as the base’s self-destruct device was activated. Once outside, the Marauder made no effort to continue following the man, opting instead to vanish into the night.
(Captain America I#269) – The Marauder appeared after Honcho, R.U. Reddy and Wolf were captured by the Mad Thinker. Showing daring skills, the masked rider easily rode past the Thinker’s security and crashed into the villain’s base. The resulting crash destroyed the Thinker’s computer and the Marauder’s motorcycle. When the Thinker’s Intellectual Robots attacked, the Marauder was able to hold off their attack briefly, but was finally overwhelmed by the numbers. When the fighting was over, there was no trace of the Marauder or the crashed bike.
(Team America#3) – The Marauder appeared on a cliff side as the Mayhem Organization spoke of their plans to kidnap the Marauder and Team America. Driving into their mobile headquarters, the Marauder easily defeated their traps. Encountering Mister Magic, the Marauder was knocked down by Magic’s mental attacks, but was able to defeat the man by mentally controlling his motorcycle to attack. When Mister Muscle attacked, the Marauder showed superhuman strength and endurance as Muscle tried to use high voltage current to subdue the Marauder. Easily withstanding the pain, the Marauder forced a feedback, knocking Muscle out. By the time Team America had been freed the Marauder had vanished.
(Team America#4) – The Marauder appeared when Wolf and his friends had been strapped into a bomb-laden roller coaster car. Racing up the track and leaping over the car, the Marauder tore the clown head off the lead car (Carlos had shouted a warning to the Marauder) with one hand and flung it onto the arcade’s roof. When the bomb detonated, the Marauder rode off in the confusion.
(Team America#5) – While Honcho was escaping from a watery death trap, the Marauder crashed into the van of Adrian Turner and Agent Evens, preventing their escape. Easily flipping over the roof, the Marauder freed the captive Secret Service agents and fought through Turner’s henchmen. As Turner tried to dislodge the Marauder’s motorcycle, the Marauder easily overcame the man and knocked him out. Once Turner was secured, the Marauder fled the scene before Reddy and Wolf arrived.
(Team America#6) – As Reddy and Evelyn were left outside for the flesh-eating slime, the Marauder broke into Mr. Gutman’s office, disabled the guards, and then freed the pair before directing the slime (via the radio transmitter) to attack the main building. As Mr. Gutman fled the scene, the Marauder casually strolled away.
(Team America#7) – The Marauder rushed into the Emperor of Texas’ coliseum and easily destroyed the man’s Death Chariots. Tackling the man, the Marauder wrested the Emperor’s control band from him and closed the missile silo door as he launched the missile. The base was destroyed during the confusion and the Marauder escaped in the ensuing chaos.
(Team America#9) – The Marauder spied on Team America as they complained about their living arrangements. After a night of soul searching atop the Brooklyn Bridge, the Marauder dropped off his motorcycle at Team America’s camper. When it was revealed that Mudge had only signed them to get his hands on the Marauder’s motorbike, the Marauder broke into the factory and stole the bike back. Confronted by Iron Man, the pair had a tense standoff, but it ended with Iron Man sensing the dark rider’s intent and letting the black-garbed biker go.
(Team America#10) – The Marauder raced out of the desert as Mr. Ashe tried to escape in his private plane. Leaping onto the wing, the Marauder was blasted by Mr. Ashe’s dust, but suffered no ill effects. Forcing his way into the cabin, the Marauder steered the plane away from Las Vegas before it could crash and infect the town with the deadly dust. Right before the plane landed, the Marauder set fire to the cabin, destroying both the plane and the chemicals on board. The strange figure jumped clear and walked away.
(Team America#11) – The Marauder exited the same motel that Team America was staying at and took his motorcycle from a secret compartment inside their camper. Racing past the Winderfield house, the Marauder rode out to the desert and waited for Ghost Rider to appear. Unimpressed by the demon’s display of strength, the Marauder left when Johnny Blaze reasserted control. When Ghost Rider broke onto the racing track the next day, the Marauder appeared to answer his challenge. Keeping even with the demonic biker, Ghost Rider challenged the Marauder to a game of chicken. At the last second, the Marauder popped a wheelie (using the motorcycle as a shield) and crashed into Ghost Rider’s flaming bike. Smoking but unscathed, the Marauder challenged Ghost Rider to a physical fight. Using a downed electrical line as a lariat, the Marauder managed to get the upper hand until Hydra attacked. In the confusion, the Marauder saw Mr. Winderfield sneaking up behind Wolf with a sawed-off shotgun. Ignoring Ghost Rider, the Marauder threw the wrecked remains of a bike frame at Winderfield, throwing off his aim and saving Wolf. Outraged by what he saw as disrespect, Ghost Rider unleashed a full blast of his hellfire at the Marauder’s back. When Ghost Rider saw the reason for the Marauder’s actions, he went on the offensive and attacked Hydra, leaving the Marauder lying prone on the asphalt. Afterward, when the wreckage and injured had been taken away, Team America gathered around the prone figure, debating their actions. Much to their collective shock, the Marauder removed the battered helmet and goggles and showed them who it was under the black leather.
(Team America#12) – Georgiana showed a great deal of surprise when she took off the Marauder’s helmet. When told of the Marauder’s deeds, she still refused to believe it she was responsible. Later, after the wedding ceremony was over and the members of Team America went their separate ways, the Marauder watched Reddy’s plane from a distance and rode off into the sunset.
(Team America#12/New Mutants I#5 - BTS) – The Marauder was now formally referred to as the Dark Rider by people in the know. Since Team America reformed with a smaller roster, the Dark Rider had not been seen.
(New Mutants I#5) – The Dark Rider appeared suddenly during an attack led by the Silver Samurai. Charging the powerful warrior only earned the Rider a lost tire as the Silver Samurai sliced off the Rider’s front wheel. Still riding, the Dark Rider turned for another pass when the Silver Samurai disabled the bike with some well placed throwing stars, causing the bike’s fuel tank to erupt. The Silver Samurai was shocked when he pulled off the Rider’s helmet and found the diminutive Dani Moonstar inside the Rider’s clothes.
(New Mutants I#6) – As Team America fled the angry security guards of Hydra’s base, Wolf, spurred on by Cowboy’s willingness to sacrifice himself, called upon the powers of the Dark Rider. Willing the abilities to himself, the transformed Wolf used his newfound abilities to defeat the guards and escape with the injured Cowboy. The powers left him when the danger passed.
(New Mutants I#8/The Thing I#27 - BTS) – After Team America lost the copyright to their name the Dark Rider was suddenly called the Black Marauder. The reason for the name change was never given.
(The Thing I#27) – The Black Marauder reappeared after the Thing was accepted into the Thunderiders. Attacking the Thing, the pair battled in the streets while the Thunderiders tried to figure out the reason for the Marauder’s rampage. Calling Honcho, they tried to come up with a working thesis. The Black Marauder was stopped after a two-pronged attack from Vance Astro and the Thing. Everyone was shocked when the Marauder’s helmet cracked open and they saw the face of Richie Champoulion. The team solemnly realized that the power of the Black Marauder could be used for evil purposes and that care was needed.
Comments: Developed by J.M. DeMattis (script), Mike Zeck (pencils) and John Beatty & Joe Rubenstein (inks).
According to my research, the entire concept of Team America was created by Ideal Toys to sell a toy line and was later licensed by Marvel. The line actually began as Evel Knievel. According to the Evel Knievel Toy Museum, the line came about when Knievel was arrested for assault in the late 1970s. Retooling the line, the Evel Knievel figures became the Marauder, Wolf, Honcho and R.U. Reddy with accompanying vehicles.
Speaking of the figure, while I was never able to find one in stores, I was able to see a picture online. It was made using the same body construction as the other three. While in the comics the Marauder dressed in all black, the Marauder figure wore the standard Team America uniform, only black with yellow highlights. The face also looked the same as the other three, only with black hair.
Also, there is the matter of hosts. Georgiana was the main host, but what about the times when she wasn’t there? In issue one, the Marauder is identified as a man.
The team’s first appearance was in the Captain America issue (with the implication that they had been around a while), yet issue one shows the team coming together, and issue two opening seconds after the first. I put the Captain America issue between two and three.
“Project: New Genesis”? Seems to be invoking the Forever People, and the Marauder concept seems more than a bit like the Infinity Man.
Profile by David Lawrence.
The Marauder/Dark Rider has no known connections to:
Team America#3, cover (main image)
Team America#9, cover (head)
The Thing I#27, cover (body shot with Thing)
Captain America I#269 (May, 1982) – J.M. DeMattis (script), Mike Zeck (pencils), John Beatty, Mike Zeck, Joe Rubenstein (inks), Jim Salicrup (editor)
Team America#1 (June, 1982) –Jim Shooter (script), Mike Vosburg (pencils), Vince Colleta (inks), Jim Shooter (editor)
Team America#2 (July, 1982) – Jim Shooter, Denny O’Neil, Bill Mantlo (script), Mike Vosburg (pencils), Vince Colleta (inks), Jim Shooter (editor)
Team America#3 (August, 1982) – Bill Mantlo (script), Luke McDonall (pencils), Mike Vosburg (inks), Jim Shooter (editor)
Team America#4 (September, 1982) – Bill Mantlo (script), Luke McDonall (pencils), Mike Vosburg (inks), Jim Shooter (editor)
Team America#5 (October, 1982)- Bill Mantlo (script), Alan Kupperburg (pencils), Vince Colleta (inks), Jim Shooter (editor)
Team America#6 (November, 1982)- Bill Mantlo (script), Alan Kupperburg (pencils), Vince Colleta (inks), Jim Shooter (editor)
Team America#7 (December, 1982) – Bill Mantlo (script), Luke McDonall (pencils), Vince Colleta (inks), Jim Shooter (editor)
Team America#9 (February, 1983) – Jim Shooter, Bill Mantlo (plot/script), Mark Bright (pencils), Vince Colleta (inks), Jim Shooter (editor)
Team America#10 (March, 1983) – Steven Grant (script), Alan Kupperburg (pencils), Vince Colleta (inks), Jim Shooter (editor)
Team America#11 (April, 1983) – Jim Shooter, Tom DeFalco (plot/script), David Simmons, Sharon Weiss (pencils), Jim Shooter (editor)
Team America#12 (May, 1983) – Jim Shooter (script), Don Perlin (pencils), Vince Colleta (inks), Jim Shooter (editor)
New Mutants#5 (July, 1983) – Chris Claremont (script), Sal Buscema (pencils), Bob McCloud (inks), Louise Jones (editor)
New Mutants I#6 (August, 1983) – Chris Claremont (script), Sal Buscema (pencils), Armando Gill, J. Tartag (inks), Louise Jones (editor)
The Thing I#27 (September, 1985) –Mike Carlin (script), Ron Wilson (pencils), Paul Ryan (inks), Mark Gruenwald (editor)
First Posted: 12/31/2009
Last updated: 05/16/2011
Any Additions/Corrections? please let me know.
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