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DOCTOR DECIBEL

Real Name: Anton Decibel

Identity/Class: Extradimensional/alternate reality (Earth-712/"Earth-S") human technology user

Occupation: Physician, formerly professional criminal

Group Membership: Squadron Supreme (Arcanna Jones, Blue Eagle/James Dore Jr., Hyperion/Mark Milton, Power Princess/Zarda Shelton, Dr. Spectrum/Joseph Ledger, Whizzer/Stanley Stewart);
    formerly Institute of Evil (Ape X/Xina, Foxfire/Olivia Underwood, Lamprey/Donald McGuiggin, Quagmire/Jerome Michaels, Shape/Raleigh Lund) 

Affiliations: AIDA, Adrienne Dore, Cerebrax, Andrew, Drusilla, Katrina and Philip Jones, Master Menace (Emil Burbank), Howard Shelton, Madeleine and Tina Stewart;
    formerly Scarlet Centurion (maybe this guy?)

Enemies: None;
    formerly Grandmaster of Reality-616, Squadron Supreme

Known Relatives: None

Aliases:  None

Base of Operations: Unrevealed;
    formerly Squadron City;
    formerly Institute of Evil headquarters

First Appearance: Squadron Supreme I#5 (January, 1986)

Powers/Abilities: Doctor Decibel possessed no known superhuman abilities. Though a trained physician and accomplished surgeon, Decibel turned to crime. Fascinated by sonic technology, he designed various sound based devices he carried in combat as Doctor Decibel. Chief among them was a blaster capable of transmitting 300 decibels of sonic energy. His head mirror could project a mega-sonic blast and was also used to hypnotize people through the subtle use of sonics. Decibel was skilled enough to grant others sonic-based powers, most famously when he replaced singer Linda Lewis' vocal cords with cybernetic implants. Decibel is immune to the effects of his own sonic weaponry.




    Following his behavior modification, re-programming, he was dedicated to performing only good actions; it prevented him from lying, betraying or refusing a direct request from one of the team.

Height: 5'11"
Weight: 165 lbs.
Eyes: Blue
Hair: Black


History:
(Official Handbook of the Marvel Universe II#12 (fb) - BTS) - A physician moonlighting as a costumed criminal with sonic weaponry, very little is known about Anton Decibel's earliest exploits. At an unrevealed point in time, he treated famous singer Linda Lewis whose vocal cords had been severed after an accident. Using an experimental technique, Decibel replaced the damaged organs. The procedure gave Lewis sonic powers, though much to her chagrin, she could no longer sing.

(Squadron Supreme I#9 (fb) - BTS) - Doctor Decibel was one of seven super-villains assembled by the Scarlet Centurion. The 40th century maniac used them as pawns in a cosmic game of chance against the Grandmaster, who had manipulated the Squadron Supreme in a similar way. After the battle, most of the villains decided to band together as the Institute of Evil.

(Squadron Supreme I#5 (fb) - BTS) - Though Ape X was the team's brains, Dr. Decibel would invariably act as leader during missions in the field given Xina's limited mobility.

(Squadron Supreme I#5 (fb) - BTS) - The Institute of Evil kidnapped Squadron member Golden Archer and brought him to their headquarters for questioning.

(Squadron Supreme I#5) - The other Institute members watched as Dr. Decibel used a sonic device in his headband to question Archer about everything that had happened prior to his kidnapping. Fascinated by the existence of the behavior modification (b-mod) device (which Golden Archer had used to mess with the mind of his ex-girlfriend, Lady Lark), Ape X told Decibel to first grill the hero about this technology before making him reveal the location of the Squadron's secret base and the identities of their families. Using this information, Ape X conceived of a plan to bring down the Squadron. She sent Decibel and Shape to Fredonia to kidnap Blue Eagle's mother, Adrienne Dore, while others were ordered to retrieve , while others were ordered to retrieve the loved ones of other Squadron members.
    With Ape X guarding the hostages back at their headquarters, Decibel led the Institute members to the Squadron Supreme's base where a brief fight ensued. Decibel faced Lady Lark and happily pointed out he was immune to the powers he'd given her. The battle soon ended when the heroes saw the Institute had taken their loved ones prisoner. After they surrendered, Decibel decided to use the b-mod device to turn the Squadronners evil. He was unaware Tom Thumb had retooled the b-mod procedure following the Lady Lark incident to prevent anyone from tampering with the mind of any and all Squadron members. The team played along until the Institute brought them back to Ape X who was initially pleased to see so many new recruits. The Squadron then attacked, with Whizzer and Tom Thumb teaming up to take down Decibel. In the end, the surprised Institute members were defeated with little effort.

(Squadron Supreme I#6 (fb) - BTS) - Shortly after the Institute members were captured, in part to prevent the knowledge of their families' identities from getting out, the Squadron Supreme voted to subject Decibel and all the members of the Institute of Evil to the b-mod treatment. His mood and personality adjusted considerably, Anton now only wanted to do good and help the Squadron. The modifications even prevented him from lying, betraying or refusing a direct request from one of the team. He was tasked to use his medical knowledge and skills as the team's physician, operating out of the newly built medical center in Squadron City.

(Squadron Supreme I#6) - During his daily rounds, Decibel went to check on the progress of Golden Archer who was still suffering injuries from being kidnapped by the Institute. He came in just as the Archer was trying to fend off the obsessively affectionate Lady Lark (still secretly suffering from the b-mod treatment). After Lark left, the Archer pleaded with Decibel to convince Lady Lark to leave him alone. Unaware of the true nature of the situation, Decibel casually dismissed the Archer's concerns.

(Squadron Supreme I#6 - BTS) - Decibel and the other former Institute of Evil members were all officially inducted into the Squadron Supreme.

(Squadron Supreme I#7) - Hyperion (in reality, the Squadron's Hyperion had been replaced by a duplicate -- created long before by the Grandmaster of Reality-616 for his Squadron Sinister -- courtesy of Master Menace) feigned amnesia after getting hit by an exploding comet. Dr. Decibel examined him and concluded that Hyperion had a concussion, though a more precise diagnosis was next to impossible given the hero's non-human physiology. Several hours later, Decibel responded to an emergency call when Power Princess' geriatric husband Howard Shelton was brought in. Decibel tried in vain to revive the frail old man. After attending his funeral, Decibel completed the autopsy report and incorrectly concluded Howard had simply died of old age (in reality the Hyperion duplicate had suffocated him in order to get closer to Power Princess).

(Squadron Supreme I#8) - Obeying Power Princess' wishes, the pregnant Arcanna Jones went to see Dr. Decibel for a check up. The physician was a bit puzzled since she wasn't even showing the slightest "baby bump" yet. Arcanna then revealed she'd been using her magic to hide how far along she was so the others wouldn't be overprotective of her. Though she was fine, Decibel didn't think it was wise for a woman about to give birth to be on active duty; however, Arcanna made him promise not to tell anyone, and his b-mod treatment forced him to obey her against his better judgment as a doctor.

(Squadron Supreme I#8 - BTS) - Quagmire risked his life saving 30 people during an accident in a factory that exposed him to a chemical compound that left him comatose and unresponsive.

(Squadron Supreme I#8) - Decibel attended a Squadron meeting where he informed the team of Quagmire's condition. After examining him, he concluded that there was a more than fair chance Quagmire would eventually recover if his body's immune system was able to metabolize the toxins it was exposed to. The gathering was interrupted by the arrival of the real Hyperion who furiously attacked the imposter. They followed the two battling titans outside to witness Earth-712's Hyperion to eventually win out, though it cost him his sight.

(Squadron Supreme I#9 (fb) - BTS) - Over the next several weeks, Decibel worked on ways to restore Hyperion's eyesight. In collaboration with Tom Thumb, they constructed seven, increasingly more powerful lasers when the previous models proved incapable of piercing Hyperion's super dense skin.

(Squadron Supreme I#9) - Decibel used Thumb's most potent laser to reattach Hyperion's optic nerves. After the procedure, he was as nervous as Hyperion to see if the procedure had worked this time. However, they needed to wait a few days for the results.

(Squadron Supreme I#10) - Doctor Decibel and the other Squadron members attended the official service for Tom Thumb, who was one of the first to be placed in the Squadron City hibernacle. The next morning during rounds, he visited the still comatose Quagmire in the hospital. To his shock, Quagmire had somehow activated his powers, causing darkforce energy to bleed into our world at a slow but steady stream. The darkforce manifested itself as thick, slimey muck that soon started to fill up the room. At first, Decibel was somewhat relieved to see this, figuring it might be a sign Quagmire was starting to wake up. After checking his vitals and confirming he was still unresponsive, Decibel got understandably worried when he realized there was no obvious way to stop Quagmire from generating more ooze.

(Squadron Supreme I#10 - BTS) - For unrevealed reasons, Quagmire's muck production increased exponentially, soon filling most of the medical facility.

(Squadron Supreme I#10) - Panicked and covered in goop, Decibel sent a distress call to the rest of the Squadron members who hurried to the hospital. By the time Hyperion reached Quagmire's room, where he ended the threat by pulling the plug on his life support system, Dr. Decibel had already drowned in the sea of darkforce ooze. Nevertheless, Hyperion insisted Anton was to be placed inside a hibernacle as quickly as possible (see comments).

(Squadron Supreme I#11 - BTS) - Plagued by the loss of Decibel, Tom Thumb, Quagmire and Nuke since they'd launched the Utopia Program, Power Princess briefly wondered if it'd all been worth it. Hyperion assured her that everything has a cost and that the benefits of Utopia outweighed the losses that came with it.

Comments: Created by Mark Gruenwald (writer), Bob Hall (pencils), Sam de la Rosa (inks)

    Seeing as most of Earth-712's inhabitants are (loosely) based on DC characters, Doctor Decibel seems patterned after the various non-super-powered villains the Flash would fight back in the day. Rogues like Captain Cold, the Top and Mirror Master all relied on gimmicks in combat.

Doctor Decibel is a counterpart to Green Lantern (Hal Jordan) villain Sonar or the Flash (Barry Allen)'s foe the Pied Piper.
--Gammatotem

It's not been revealed what happened to Decibel after he suffocated in Quagmire's goop. Hyperion rushed him to one of the hibernacles but it remains to be seen if modern medical science can revive him.

Doctor Decibel, as part of the Squadron Supreme, was profiled in Official Handbook of the Marvel Universe Deluxe Edition#12.

Unless otherwise specified, all locations and beings related in this profile refer to Earth/Reality-712 versions.

Profile by Norvo.

CLARIFICATIONS:
Doctor Decibel should not be confused with

  • Decibel, Jonothon Starsmore, formerly Chamber @ New Warriors III#17
  • or any other "Doctor" or "Decibel" characters

images: (without ads)
Official Handbook Marvel Deluxe Edition I#12, p40, pan1 (main image)
Squadron Supreme I#8, p8, pan2 (unmasked closeup)
Squadron Supreme I#5, p10, pan4 (fires his mega-sonic blast)
Squadron Supreme I#5, p2, pans1&2 (questions Golden Archer)
Squadron Supreme I#5, p3, pan1 (full costume)
Squadron Supreme I#10, p23, pan2 (dead near the life support machine)


Appearances:
Squadron Supreme I#5 (January, 1986) - Mark Gruenwald (writer), Bob Hall (pencils), Sam de la Rosa (inks), Ralph Macchio (editor)
Squadron Supreme I#6 (February, 1986) - Mark Gruenwald (writer), Paul Ryan (pencils), Sam de la Rosa & Keith Williams (inks), Ralph Macchio (editor)
Squadron Supreme I#7 (March, 1986) - Mark Gruenwald (writer), John Buscema (pencils), Jackson Guice (inks), Ralph Macchio (editor)
Squadron Supreme I#8 (April, 1986) - Mark Gruenwald (writer), Bob Hall (pencils), Sam de la Rosa (inks), Ralph Macchio (editor)
Squadron Supreme I#9 (May, 1986) - Mark Gruenwald (writer), Paul Ryan (pencils), Sam de la Rossa (inks), Ralph Macchio (editor)
Squadron Supreme I#10 (June, 1986) - Mark Gruenwald (writer), Paul Ryan (pencils), Sam de la Rossa (inks), Ralph Macchio (editor)
Squadron Supreme I#11 (July, 1986) - Mark Gruenwald (writer), Paul Ryan (pencils), Sam de la Rossa (inks), Ralph Macchio (editor)


Last updated: 06/03/17

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