SAZZIK THE SORCERER
Real Name: Sazzik (first name unknown)
Identity/Class: Human magic user
Occupation: Sorcerer, despot
Group Membership: None
Affiliations: Borgia family (Cyana, others )
Enemies: Boris Grumm
Known Relatives: Father, mother (names unrevealed)
Aliases: "Wickedest being of all time"
Base of Operations: Unknown; formerly 15th Century Europe
First Appearance: Tales of Suspense I#32/2 (August, 1962)
Powers/Abilities: A master of the mystic arts, Sazzik was adept at casting magic spells for a variety of effects. The limits of his powers are unknown, but he could levitate himself and others, reduce men to the size of dolls, and magically transmute other people and objects (e.g., turning a man into a chicken, or swords into flowers). He could also transport his foes into a limbo-like netherworld.
(Tales of Suspense I#32/2 (fb)) - Born to Gypsy parents in the 15th Century, Sazzik showed an early aptitude for the mystic arts; by the age of 10, his knowledge of the occult far surpassed that of his teachers. Sazzik soon ruled the Gypsy tribe, and he took cruel delight in using his sorcery to punish those who defied his authority. His ambitions later led him to join forces with other evil-doers, such as the infamous Borgia family. Eventually, Sazzik became the most powerful man in Europe, and he used his magic in a mercenary manner to influence the outcome of battles. But after years of ruthless villainy, the evil sorcerer mysteriously disappeared and was heard from no more--presumably, he transported himself to some other plane of existence.
(Tales of Suspense I#32/2 (fb) - BTS) - Sazzik's life and exploits were chronicled in a book--"The History of Sorcery: A Study in Black Magic" (author and date of publication unknown)--in which the sorcerer's notorious reputation earned him the title "the wickedest being of all time"; one such copy of this book ended up in an unidentified public library (see comments).
(Tales of Suspense I#32/2) - In modern times, TV producer Boris Grumm went to the library to brainstorm and research some ideas for a new television program. He found the old book of sorcery and began reading about Sazzik. Then Grumm got the inspiration to produce a TV show on the life of the sinister sorcerer, and he began filming the violent and terrifying program. Late one night while Grumm was alone, he looked through the book and foolishly recited an incantation that summoned Sazzik from beyond. Irritated at having his centuries-old slumber disturbed, the nefarious necromancer cast a spell that sent Grumm into a misty netherworld. Then Sazzik transformed himself to an ethereal state and vanished, presumably to return to his slumber.
Comments: Created by an uncredited writer, Jack Kirby (pencils) and Dick Ayers (inker).
This entire story was told from Boris Grumm's perspective, and Sazzik was a secondary character, which is why there really weren't any clear pictures of the sorcerer.
The story panel where Sazzik was shown as a boy reminded me of young Victor von Doom, when Dr. Doom's origin was first presented (@ Fantastic Four Annual #2); in that story, Victor learned that his mother, Cynthia von Doom, had been a witch. Since they both share a Gypsy heritage, and since Cynthia's maiden-name has never been revealed (perhaps "Cynthia Sazzik"?), then maybe Dr. Doom is somehow a descendant of Sazzik--Victor was disfigured following his unsuccessful attempt to contact the netherworld (see "Necrophone"), and Dr. Doom's first appearance in Fantastic Four I#5 precedes this Sazzik story by a month.
Maybe some of Sazzik's allies and/or rivals included Dracula, Drothor, or that group of sorcerers that menaced Chris Garson.
Sazzik might make a good potential foe for Dr. Stephen Strange.
Maybe that tome of sorcery that Grumm found was donated to the library from the book collection of the late Ralph Halley.
In Marvel Westerns: Outlaw Files, it was revealed that in 1962, Grumm Productions made "I Was A Teenage Gunsel," a violent made-for-TV delinquent/Western hybrid movie about the Rawhide Kid (Johnny Bart)--perhaps this was an alternate title for "I Was A Fugitive Gunsel" (...if not another movie entirely), the poster of which was hanging in Grumm's office (see Grumm image).
This story was reprinted in Dead of Night#9/2 (April, 1975), which is where the images are from.
And a BIG Thank You to Grendel Prime for the scans!
Profile by John Kaminski.
Sazzik the Sorcerer has no known connections to:
Boris Grumm has no known connections to:
A producer of brutal television crime dramas, the unscrupulous Grumm was responsible for such controversial and violent TV fare as "Hot Lead Harrigan," "Street Savage," and "I Was A Fugitive Gunsel" (see comments), he went to a public library to research some ideas for a new TV program and he ran across a book on black magic. While reading the book, he was intrigued by the story of Sazzik, a notorious 15th Century sorcerer, so Grumm decided to produce a show about him. During filming, Grumm ignored the pleas of the production crew, who asked him to tone down the shocking program--the greedy producer was only concerned about getting high viewer-ratings. Late one night, Grumm was alone and reading the book when he foolishly recited an incantation that summoned Sazzik to the earthly plane. The weird warlock was angered at having his slumber disturbed, so he cast a spell that banished Grumm into a misty netherworld, then vanished to return whence he came. Following Grumm's mysterious disappearance, production of his Sazzik TV program was subsequently canceled.
--Tales of Suspense I#32/2
Dead of Night#9/2, p3, pan5 (main image)
Other Appearances: None
Last updated: 12/05/13
Any Additions/Corrections? please let me know.
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