Membership: Jason, numerous unidentified others
Purpose: To live as a free and perfect society
Affiliations: Captain America (Steve Rogers),
Dr. Mark Cushing, Iron Man (Tony Stark), S.H.I.E.L.D.
Enemies: A.I.M., Mentallo (Marvin Flumm),
M.O.D.O.K. (George Tarleton)
Base of Operations: Zenith City, an
unidentified island, Earth
First Appearance: Iron Man & Captain
America '98 Annual (1998)
History: (Iron Man & Captain America '98
Annual (fb)) - Having left Tony Stark's employ after Stark ended
Cushing's Operation: Gengineering project to eliminate infirmities, Dr.
Mark Cushing instead purchased an island, unaware that the funding had
actually come from A.I.M., who had taken an interest in Cushing's
project. Creating Zenith City, Cushing restarted his Gengineering
project despite Tony Stark's past worries that Cushing's project
created a need to continue the treatment or perish and that it created
a hivemind effect on all who underwent treatment. Testing the project
on Zenith City's weak and sickly, Cushing succeeded in completely
curing their afflictions, giving the subjects physical and mental
perfection, but before the lame legged Cushing could undergo his own
procedure, A.I.M. attacked the island. Now aware of A.I.M.'s
involvement in the island, Cushing refused to surrender the details of
his Gengineering project and was killed. The hiveminded subjects began
calling themselves the Groupmind and placed Cushing's body in a stasis
tube while A.I.M. proved unable to replicate Cushing's work. A.I.M.
eventually developed circuitry that they attached to the project's
treatment rays that placed the Groupmind in a hypnotic state, unable to
fight back against A.I.M. with their psionic abilities. A.I.M. also
spirited ten of the Groupmind away for their Mentallo Project, where
they were used as living batteries for the villain Mentallo's own
psychic power. While raiding the A.I.M. base housing Mentallo on behalf
of S.H.I.E.L.D., Captain America freed the Groupmind members captured
there but, having no idea who they were or what they were being used
for, he turned them over to S.H.I.E.L.D.'s custody and later learned of
their usage as batteries.
(Iron Man & Captain America '98 Annual) -
Investigating another A.I.M. base and the seeming disappearance of Iron
Man's old acquaintance Dr. Mark Cushing, Iron Man and Captain America
made their way to Zenith City's island, where they were besieged by
A.I.M. agents. Upon defeating the agents, they continued further,
stumbling into Zenith City itself, where they were greeted by the
Groupmind and their representative, Jason. When Iron Man asked if Jason
was the leader of Zenith City, Jason replied that Zenith City needed no
leader and he was merely a welcoming representative. Captain America
asked about the A.I.M. agents but Jason assured him that there were no
more A.I.M. agents on the island, the Groupmind having liberated
themselves from A.I.M. control while Iron Man and Captain America were
defeating the earlier squad. Jason then led Iron Man to the preserved
corpse of Dr. Cushing and explained the Groupmind's origins to the two
heroes. Jason then thanked Captain America and Iron Man for helping to
free them but Cap warned not to thank them too soon, as M.O.D.O.K. was
usually involved in A.I.M. activities. Having been watching Zenith City
from afar, M.O.D.O.K. chose that moment to initiate A.I.M.'s Override
Circuit, which changed the frequency of A.I.M.'s Zenith City control
spire and turned the Groupmind against Captain America and Iron Man.
Swarmed by the mind-controlled Groupmind members, Cap and Iron Man
tried to make their way to A.I.M.'s control spire but Iron Man refused
to destroy it, as the Groupmind would die without constant treatment
from its rays. M.O.D.O.K. soon used the Groupmind's psionic abilities
to confront Cap and Iron Man personally in the form of a psionic
projection. After M.O.D.O.K. hurled Iron Man away, Captain America
feigned surrender then used his energy shield to disrupt M.O.D.O.K.'s
energy matrix, the psychic feedback of which knocked the Groupmind
members unconscious. Iron Man then regrouped with Captain America and
tinkered with the spire to disable A.I.M.'s control circuit, saving the
Groupmind's lives. Awaking, Jason appeared to the heroes as a psychic
projection and informed them that the Groupmind sensed the incoming
armies of A.I.M. Realizing their communication lines were jammed by
both A.I.M. and the Groupmind's treatment spire, which they couldn't
turn off without killing the Groupmind, Iron Man decided to try to
upgrade the spire to prevent the Groupmind from dying if the treatment
was stopped. Using his old access codes, Iron Man managed to partially
succeed, allowing the spire to be turned off without killing the
Groupmind but instead returning the Groupmind members to their
pre-transformed state. Jason immediately argued, claiming the Groupmind
would rather die than returned to their weak states and Iron Man soon
succumbed to his recent injuries, leaving Captain America to decide
whether to turn off the spire. Refusing to allow the Groupmind to die,
Cap chose to turn off the spire and return the Groupmind members to
their previous handicapped states, thereby rendering the Groupmind
useless to M.O.D.O.K. and A.I.M.. Captain America and a somewhat
recovered Iron Man later watched as S.H.I.E.L.D. arrived and took the
former Groupmind members into their custody for medical treatment.
Comments: Created by Kurt Busiek, Roger Stern, Mark Waid, Patrick Zircher and Randy Emberlin.
During the flashback showing the origins of the Groupmind, Dr. Mark Cushing was erroneously referred to as "Hamill." Perhaps his full name is Mark Hamill Cushing? That would be interesting as actor Mark Hamill portrayed Luke Skywalker in Star Wars, a movie that also included actor Peter Cushing as Grand Moff Tarkin..
Also, since Mark Cushing was not an actual member of
the Groupmind, I decided I would not include a subprofile of him in
this profile in favor of him receiving his own profile someday...
Profile by Proto-Man.
Groupmind has no known connections to
Jason, like all of the other Groupmind members, was once lame and infirm but was transformed into the epitome of physical and mental perfection by Dr. Cushing's Gengineering treatments. He was also placed in a hypnotic state by A.I.M. when they invaded Zenith City but became the Groupmind's representative after Captain America and Iron Man helped free the Groupmind from A.I.M.'s influence. Explaining the Groupmind's origins to the two heroes, Jason's mind was soon taken over by M.O.D.O.K.'s Override Circuit and he attacked Cap and Iron Man. After Captain America knocked out Jason and the other Groupmind members by disrupting M.O.D.O.K.'s energy matrix, Jason recovered and sent a psychic projection of himself to Cap and Iron Man to inform them that A.I.M. had sent an army to attack the island. Iron Man managed to upgrade the Groupmind's treatment spire to be turned off without killing Jason and the others, but turning it off would then return them to their pre-transformed states. Refusing to return to a less-than-perfect form, Jason argued that the Groupmind would rather die than become infirm again but Captain America ultimately to turn off the spire and return Jason and the others to their weak states rather than kill them. No longer of use to M.O.D.O.K., Jason and the other Groupmind members were left alone as A.I.M. halted their assault and Jason was carried off on a stretcher by S.H.I.E.L.D. agents who had come to treat the now-infirm Groupmind members.
As one of the Groupmind, Jason had powers typical to the Groupmind, including peak human physical abilities. Like the others, his mental abilities were also perfect, granting him telepathy, limited precognition, psionic image projection and the ability to project psychic blasts. These powers were lost when he was returned to his original state.
--Iron Man & Captain America '98 Annual
images: (without ads)
Iron Man & Captain America '98 Annual, p22-23, pan1 (Groupmind, main image)
Iron Man & Captain America '98 Annual, p25, pan3 (Groupmind, pre-transformations)
Iron Man & Captain America '98 Annual, p22-23, pan3 (Jason)
Iron Man & Captain America '98 Annual (1998) - Kurt Busiek, Roger Stern (plot), Mark Waid (script), Patrick Zircher (pencils), Randy Emberlin (inks), Matt Idelson (editor)
Last updated: 02/29/16.
Any Additions/Corrections? please let me know.
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