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SENATOR WARD

Real Name: Unrevealed

Identity/Class: Human mutate

Occupation: United States Senator for New York

Group Membership: None

AffiliationsAlonzo, Dr. Octopus (Otto Octavius), Fantastic Four (Human Torch (Johnny Storm), Invisible Woman, Mr. Fantastic, Thing), Hunger, Senator Robert Kelly, Spider-Man (Martha "Mattie" Franklin), Trapster (Peter Petruski), unidentified secreatary, unidentified six shadowy guys, "viral zombies", Wizard (Bentley Whitman), Z'Nox (including the survivor and the criminals)
    formerly SHIELD

Enemies: Betty Brant, Bullseye, Hydra, Kingpin (Wilson Fisk), Ranger, SHIELD, Sinister Six (Electro (Max Dillon), Kraven (Alyosha Kravinoff), Mysterio (Daniel Berkhart), Sandman (William Baker), Venom (Eddie Brock), Vulture (Adrian Toomes)), Spider-Man (Peter Parker), Arthur Stacy, Susan Strong

Known Relatives: None

Aliases: Stewart Ward, Sentry

Base of Operations: A subterranean base beneath New York City

First Appearance: Peter Parker: Spider-Man II#1 (January, 1999)

Powers/Abilities: Stewart Ward was infected with a Z'Nox pathogen which slowly consumed his body, transforming it into an oozing, pink mass - although Ward could seemingly assume human form at will.  He could spread his disease to others, either via contact or projectile blasts.  Once infected, victims of Ward's pathogen would develop an oozing pink rash, and would spread the virus to anyone they came in contact with.  Ward also demonstrated the ability to transform infectees into monstrous, mindless "viral zombies", although it appears that this required prolonged contact.  The pathogen gradually ate away at Ward's body, slowly killing him.

He also possessed some form of energy powers, which may have been an early manifestation of his long-suppressed viral infection powers.  Ward was also skilled with the use of firearms and computers, and was a talented politician.

Height: 5'11"
Weight: 181 lbs.

 

History: (Amazing Spider-Man II#24 (fb) ) - The young Arthur Stacy contended with another man for the affections of Nancy Jean.  Nancy eventually married Arthur, leaving his rival bitter and resentful.

(Amazing Spider-Man II#23 (fb) ) - Now a paramilitary agent, Stacy's rival (now codenamed Sentry) was sent to eastern Europe alongside Stacy (codenamed Seeker) and a mystery man known as the Ranger.  An anti-Hydra mission went sour, forcing them to retreat.  The Ranger questioned Sentry's integrity, but Seeker defended him.  Later, they snuck into a Hydra biological research facility, which contained the preserved corpses of Z'Nox aliens and a pathogen derived from their bodies.  Killing the guards, Seeker and Ranger prepared to destroy the facility, but instead found themselves at gunpoint, courtesy of Sentry.  Stealing a vial of the pathogen and shooting open a coolant tank to cover his escape, Sentry left his ex-comrades and met his Z'Nox contact in a marketplace.  Ranger and Seeker caught up to them, and engaged them in a firefight.  In the course of the battle, the alien shattered the vial, infecting Sentry and making him its host.  A cloud of death spread over the marketplace, killing numerous civilians.  Sentry and his Z'Nox contact managed to escape, although Ranger and Seeker believed them to have perished.   

(Peter Parker: Spider-Man II#1 - BTS) - Over the next several years, Sentry established the identity of "Stewart Ward", and eventually became a Senator for the state of New York.  Taking the nation by storm, he was touted as the next President.  He may or may not have suffered memory loss over this period, forgetting about his infection with the Z'nox pathogen - however, he also apparently remained in contact with the Z'nox survivor during this time. 

(Peter Parker: Spider-Man I#80 - BTS/Peter Parker: Spider-Man II#8 (fb) ) - Ward recovered the fallen Hydra agent Crown and had him transformed into his vampiric operative Hunger.

(Peter Parker: Spider-Man II#1) - In a hotel suite in Chicago, Ward heard strange voices accusing him of killing a number of innocents.  Finally tossing a glass into the television set to silence them, Ward explained the incident to his security detail as clumsiness.  The next day, Ward departed for New York City.  Landing at JFK International Airport, he was attacked by the Ranger, only to be defended by the new Spider-Man (Mattie Franklin) and the then-retired Peter Parker.  As the Ranger was taken away by the police, Ward promised Parker that he would repay him. 

(Amazing Spider-Man II#4 (fb) ) - Ward arranged with the Wizard to stage a fake attempt on his life. 

(Amazing Spider-Man II#4) - The Sandman, who had been assigned to Ward as a bodyguard, accompanied Ward to his hotel room, where they encountered the Trapster.  Before they could battle, Spider-Man (now Peter Parker once more) intervened, only to be blindsided by the not-so-reformed after all Sandman.  Ward fled, with both supervillains hot on his heels, and found himself defended by both Spider-Man and the Fantastic Four.  The five heroes routed the villains, and Ward held a press conference the next day about the incident.  Afterwards, he called the Wizard to berate him for making the attempt too realistic.

(Peter Parker: Spider-Man II#4) - Ward invited J. Jonah Jameson into his limousine and demanded that he kill the stories he'd published on the "Sewer Killer" (actually Ward's agent Hunger).  Later, after Spider-Man and Marrow forced Hunger to retreat from his lair, he had his agents recapture the vampire.

(Peter Parker: Spider-Man II#6) - Spider-Man saved Ward from a Hydra assassination attempt.  As the police approached, Ward accused Spider-Man of being part of the attack, forcing him to flee.  Later, he had his men apprehend Arthur Stacy and bring him to meet Ward atop an unfinished building.  Ward tried to get Stacy to join him, but he refused.  As Stacy tried to leave, the conversation was interrupted by the assassin Bullseye, who had been sent to kill Ward by the Kingpin.  Killing Ward's bodyguards, Bullseye was prevented from finishing off the senator thanks to the intervention of Spider-Man.  Although he managed to wound Stacy, Bullseye was forced to retreat, and blew up the building as a parting shot.  Spider-Man managed to get both men to safety, after which Ward left with his remaining security detail. 

(Amazing Spider-Man Annual 1999) - In conjunction with Ward, the Wizard and the Trapster used the Ranger, Betty Brant, and Spider-Man as test subjects for the Wizard's Dimensional Matrix Transponder.  While the three of them were trapped in a holographic illusory world, Ward argued with the Wizard, questioning the wisdom of his plan to harness the energy of the Negative Zone.  As the Wizard seemingly disappeared into the void, Ward fled.  In his limousine, his superiors (six shadowy figures) contacted him.  Later, on a flight to Washington, Ward watched footage of the Wizard's reality warp on the news and again reported his progress to his superiors.  Later, in Washington, after Spider-Man defeated the Wizard, Ward's superiors berated him, but he blamed the plan's failure on the Wizard.  Leaving his limo, Ward walked to a seemingly-abandoned house, where Ward greeted a "friend" who had arrived from the Negative Zone.

(Amazing Spider-Man II#12) - Spider-Man burst into Ward's office, and warned him that Arthur Stacy was planning to kill him.  Ward told the wall-crawler that he was unconcerned, but after he left, he contacted Doctor Octopus, whom Ward had apparently had previous dealings, for assistance.  While Ward impatiently paced his office, waiting for Octavius to arrive, he was yanked out of his window by Ock's tentacles.  The Doctor berated him about being called to deal with such an insignificant threat - until they were both assaulted by the Sandman's new five-member Sinister Six, who had come to kill Octavius and abduct the Senator on behalf of an unknown benefactor. 

(Peter Parker: Spider-Man II#12) - Leaving Spider-Man to deal with the Six (which now included a sixth member, the homicidal Venom), Ward and Octavius fled.  They didn't get far, however, as Ock had been hit with one of Kraven's drug-tipped spears.  He collapsed, and only the arrival of Spider-Man saved the both of them from an untimely end.  Ward attempted to abandon both Spider-Man and Ock, only to run into Arthur Stacy, who threatened him with a gun until Spider-Man disarmed him.  Before they could resolve their differences, the Sinister Six caught up to them.  Spider-Man valiantly fought them off, but as he began to falter, the Six encroached on Ward...who suddenly erupted with a torrent of bizarre energy, zapping Ock, Kraven, Sandman, Vulture, Electro, and Mysterio.  At Mysterio's command, Electro somehow neutralized Ward's energy powers, and the two abandoned their partners to spirit the still-glowing Ward away.

(Amazing Spider-Man II#20) - In Washington, D.C., the (now normal) Senator Ward met with Senator Robert Kelly, and agreed to support his presidential bid.  Due to a cold, Kelly declined shaking Ward's hand, but his aide Susan Strong did, and agreed to meet Ward for dinner sometime.  Unbeknownst to Strong, however, she had been infected by Ward's pathogen...

(Amazing Spider-Man II#21) - While getting amorous with Strong, Ward suggested that Senator Kelly would owe him for his support, sending her storming off in a huff. 

(Amazing Spider-Man II#22) - Ward assaulted Eddie Brock at Queens' Calvary Cemetary, and stole his symbiote.  After sending a threatening note to Arthur Stacy and sending his men to ransack Stacy's home and booby-trap it, Ward studied Brock's symbiote in order to better understand his relationship with the pathogen in his body.

(Amazing Spider-Man II#23) - Having learned all he could from the symbiote, Ward released it, and then infected one of his bodyguards, Standers, with the pathogen, turning him into a mindless thrall.  He sent Standers and another infected agent to attack Arthur's daughter Jill, but they were repulsed by Spider-Man and the Ranger.  Ward soon arrived on the scene, flanked by his original Z'Nox ally and a number of other Z'Nox who had been transported to Earth - which had been converted into a prison for intergalactic criminals.

 

 

 

(Amazing Spider-Man II#24) - In the ensuing battle, Ward's Z'Nox abducted Arthur Stacy, and Ward infected Spider-Man and the Ranger with his pathogen.  Ward hooked Stacy up to the machines in his underground lair, and prepared to transfer the virus which was ravaging his body into his old rival by pumping him full of pure Z'Nox pathogen, which would then draw the virus away from Ward's body, leaving him alive, healthy - and in possession of the cure.  The base was invaded by Spider-Man and the Ranger, and were soon engaged by the Z'Nox.  As they did so, Ward altered his plans - he intended to pump them all full of the pathogen and deposit them at the United Nations, infecting the world's leaders.  As Spider-Man and the Ranger defeated the Z'Nox, Arthur broke free of the machines and injected Ward with a dose of pure pathogen, mutating him into a gruesome mass of tissue.  He struggled with Spider-Man and the Ranger, the former of whom grabbed the vial of antidote and slammed it into one of Ward's exposed arteries.  While the Ranger kept Ward occupied, Stacy and Spider-Man escaped. As they emerged from the alien lair, Ward exploded, converting what remained of his body into an antidote-laden mist, which spread through the city, curing those infected with his plague. 

 

 

 

 

Comments: Created by Howard Mackie, John Romita Jr., Scott Hanna, & Jimmy Palmiotti.

Confused?  Good, so am I.  The whole Ward plot raised a lot of questions, many of which remain wholly unanswered.  To wit:

Was Ward really amnesiac?  He sure seems to be - Arthur Stacy believes he is, and Ward seems to be very confused during the hallucination in PP:SM II#1.  But if he doesn't know that he's infected with a deadly alien virus, why's he getting involved with guys like the Wizard and Dr. Octopus?  ASM II#24 claimed that he'd been associated with them in order to find another host for the virus - but he shouldn't even have known about the virus at the time.

Who were the six guys giving Ward orders in the 1999 ASM Annual?  They look way too humanoid to be Z'Nox, and at that point, Ward should have been involved with the one Z'Nox, tops.

Who'd Ward summon from the Negative Zone in that abandoned house?  The Z'nox homeworld was shunted to the Negative Zone by the Fantastic Four, so it could be a Z'nox - but the only Z'nox we have any evidence of Ward dealing with was the survivor of the battle against the X-Men, and he was trapped on Earth!  And if they'd been able to access the Z'nox homeworld, why did Ward wait until then?

Who are the Sinister Six working for?  I assume it's the Z'Nox, but it's never mentioned again.  And for that matter, what's the deal with Mysterio and Electro?  Did they give Ward to the Z'Nox survivor? 

What's the deal with Hunger?  I don't know why Ward would need a pet vampire, much less a pet vampire to sic on the Mob.  I guess it could be in retaliation for the attempted Bullseye hit, but it seems like a lot of trouble to go to.

"Ward" is, of course, a synonym of "sentry".  Clever.

Amazing Spider-Man II#23 places Ward's infection as having taken place fifteen years prior to the present, but I don't think that's quite viable - surely fifteen years of Marvel time can't have passed between X-Men I#65 (which was published in 1970), and this story (which was published in 2000). 

Profile by Minor Irritant.

CLARIFICATIONS:
Stewart Ward, alias Sentry, has no known connections to


Z'nox survivor

(X-Men I#65 - BTS/Amazing Spider-Man II#23 (fb)) - The Z'nox survivor and his mate were part of an invasion force that attempted to conquer Earth for the Z'nox.  They were repulsed by the X-Men, and all of the invaders, save for the survivor, were killed.  The survivor eventually contacted Sentry, who had been given a mission to destroy a European Hydra facility containing the bodies of the survivor's dead crewmates.  The survivor informed him of a deadly pathogen which had been brought on the mission as a failsafe, in order to wipe out Earth's population, but had not been activated.  Sentry recovered the pathogen and met with the survivor in a marketplace, where they had a shootout with Sentry's betrayed teammates Seeker (Arthur Stacy) and Ranger.  During the firefight, the survivor shot the vial of pathogen, infecting Sentry with it.  In the ensuing chaos, both escaped.

(Amazing Spider-Man II#23) - Sentry, now US Senator Stewart Ward, reunited with the survivor and three other Z'nox, who had been exiled to Earth by the Intergalactic Council.  The five of them confronted Spider-Man, Stacy and Ranger.

(Amazing Spider-Man II#24) - The survivor and the other Z'nox battled Spider-Man and the Ranger, defeating them and abducting Arthur Stacy.  They took him back to their underground base, where they prepared to transfer the pathogen housed within Ward into Stacy.  Before they could do so, the survivor and the other Z'nox were defeated by Spider-Man using a power conduit.  All four unconscious Z'nox were presumably killed when Ward exploded, destroying the base. 

--Amazing Spider-Man II#23  (Amazing Spider-Man II#23  (fb), 23, 24



 

Alonzo

(Amazing Spider-Man Annual 1999) - Alonzo, Ward's driver, drove him to a meeting with the Wizard at a warehouse containing bizarre virtual reality energy construct.  When the Wizard's experiment began to destroy the warehouse, Ward fled, and ordered Alonzo to drive him away.

--Amazing Spider-Man Annual 1999

 



six shadowy guys

(Amazing Spider-Man Annual 1999) - Ward's six superiors contacted him via video-phone as he drove away from the Wizard's energy project, insisting that he make sure their objectives were achieved, lest they unmake him just as they made him.  Later, they contacted him and berated him for the Wizard's failure.  Ward assured them that all other aspects of the operation were going according to schedule.  They warned him again against failure.

--Amazing Spider-Man Annual 1999



Ward's secretary

(Amazing Spider-Man II#22) - Susan Strong attempted to call Ward's office, but his secretary informed her that he was away on business.

--Amazing Spider-Man II#22

 

 


"viral zombies"

(Amazing Spider-Man II#23) - Using data he had gleaned from Eddie Brock's symbiote, Ward used his viral powers to transform two members of his security detail (Special Agent Standers and another) into "viral zombies".  He sent them to attack

The "viral zombies" were superhumanly strong and durable, and seemingly mindless, able only to follow Ward's commands.  They were presumably cured when Ward's death released the cure.

--Amazing Spider-Man II#22

 



Z'nox criminals

(Maximum Security#1 - BTS/Amazing Spider-Man II#23) - Three Z'nox criminals, two of them scientists, were exiled to Earth when the Intergalactic Council decreed that the planet become a prison for intergalactic criminals.

(Amazing Spider-Man II#23) - Stewart Ward and a survivor of the original Z'nox invasion of Earth contacted the three Z'nox and recruited them into their world domination scheme.  The five of them eventually confronted Spider-Man and Ward's enemies Arthur Stacy and the Ranger.

(Amazing Spider-Man II#24) - The Z'nox battled Spider-Man and the Ranger, defeating them and abducting Arthur Stacy.  They took him back to their underground base, where they prepared to transfer the pathogen housed within Ward into Stacy.  Before they could do so, the Z'nox were defeated by Spider-Man using a power conduit.  All four unconscious Z'nox were presumably killed when Ward exploded, destroying the base. 

--Amazing Spider-Man II#22, 23




images: (without ads)
Amazing Spider-Man II#23, p6, pan1 (main image, half-human form)
Peter Parker: Spider-Man II#1, p11, pan6 (headshot, human form)
Amazing Spider-Man II#23, p9, pan4 (Ward as Sentry)
Peter Parker: Spider-Man II#12, p22, pan4 (energy powers)
Amazing Spider-Man II#24, p15, pan2 (wholly alien form)
Amazing Spider-Man II#24, p21, pan1 (mega-mutated form)
Amazing Spider-Man II#23, p19, pan4 (Z'nox survivor)
Amazing Spider-Man 1999 Annual, p21, pan1 (Alonzo)
Amazing Spider-Man 1999 Annual, p39, pan1 (shadowy guys)
Amazing Spider-Man II#22, p11, pan4 (secretary)
Amazing Spider-Man II#23, p22, pan2 (viral zombies)
Amazing Spider-Man II#23, p23, pan4 (Z'nox criminals)


Appearances:
Peter Parker: Spider-Man II#1 (January, 1999) - Howard Mackie (writer), John Romita, Jr. (penciler), Scott Hanna & Jimmy Palmiotti (inkers), Ralph Macchio (editor)
Amazing Spider-Man II#4 (April, 1999) - Howard Mackie (writer), John Byrne (penciler), Scott Hanna (inker), Ralph Macchio (editor)
Peter Parker: Spider-Man II#4 (April, 1999) - Howard Mackie (writer), John Romita, Jr. (penciler), Scott Hanna (inker), Ralph Macchio (editor)
Amazing Spider-Man Annual 1999 - Howard Mackie (writer), John Buscema (artist), Ralph Macchio (editor)
Peter Parker: Spider-Man I#6-8 (June-August, 1999) - Howard Mackie (writer), John Romita, Jr. (penciler), Scott Hanna (inker), Ralph Macchio (editor)
Amazing Spider-Man II#12 (December, 1999) - Howard Mackie (writer), John Byrne (penciler), John Beatty & Rodney Ramos (inkers), Ralph Macchio (editor)
Peter Parker: Spider-Man II#12 (December, 1999) - Howard Mackie (writer), John Romita, Jr. (penciler), Scott Hanna & Rodney Ramos (inker), Ralph Macchio (editor)
Amazing Spider-Man II#20 (August, 2000) - Howard Mackie (writer), Erik Larsen (penciler), John Beatty (inker), Ralph Macchio (editor)
Amazing Spider-Man II#21 (September, 2000) - Howard Mackie (writer), Erik Larsen (penciler), John Beatty & Rodney Ramos (inkers), Ralph Macchio (editor)
Amazing Spider-Man II#22-23 (October-November, 2000) - Howard Mackie (writer), John Romita, Jr. (penciler), Scott Hanna (inker), Ralph Macchio (editor)
Amazing Spider-Man II#24 (December, 2000) - Howard Mackie (writer), John Romita, Jr. (penciler), Randy Elliott & Dan Green  (inkers), Ralph Macchio (editor)


Last updated: 09/23/10

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