Real Name: Skrak (first name unrevealed (see comments))
Identity/Class: Human (1950s era)
Occupation: Artist, plastic surgeon
Group Membership: None
Affiliations: Francois (last name unrevealed)
Enemies: Andre (last name unrevealed)
Known Relatives: None
Aliases: Maestro (as called by Duval); monsieur (as called by Andre); "the great master Skrak" (as called by Francois)
Base of Operations: His mansion in Paris, France
First Appearance: Marvel Tales I#127/4 (October, 1954)
Powers/Abilities: A normal human, Skrak had no paranormal physical abilities; he carried a handgun.
A talented portrait painter, Skrak was also skilled at plastic surgery (and possibly transplant surgery (see comments)), but he used these skills for sinister purposes.
Height: 5'8" (by
Weight: 150 lbs. (by approximation)
Hair: White (balding)
(Marvel Tales I#127/4 (fb) - BTS) - The past of Skrak is largely unrevealed, but he somehow acquired his surgical skills. At some point, Skrak secretly captured individuals and performed fiendish surgeries upon them to distort their features; he then used his disfigured prisoners as inspiration for his paintings.
Skrak's horrific paintings were considered to be masterpieces by connoisseurs of the art-world--he made a fortune and gained an international reputation for being a master of modernism. Skrak employed Francois to run errands and deliver his paintings.
(Marvel Tales I#127/4) - While delivering some of Skrak's paintings, Francois met with two friends at an outdoor cafe, and they discussed Skrak's artwork--their conversation was overheard by frustrated artist Andre, who thought to himself that if he could learn Skrak's secret for inspiration, then he too could be a famous artist instead of living in poverty.
That night, Andre returned to his studio to work on a painting, but he became angry when he realized that no one wanted to buy his works, because everyone seemed to be enamored by Skrak's style of modernism. In a fit of rage, Andre destroyed all his paintings, and he became determined to learn Skrak's secret at any cost.
Andre could no longer bear being in his studio, surrounded by the remnants of his many failures, so he went out to walk the streets of Paris. During his walk, Andre wondered what it was that Skrak used to give his art the true feeling of pain and depth and life; then he chanced to pass by an art store, where he saw Skrak speaking with Duval, the owner of the store--Skrak promised Duval he'd have more paintings for him in the next month because he had some new ideas. Seeing this as a wonderful opportunity, Andre secretly followed Skrak to his grand mansion--no one had ever seen Skrak while he was painting, and Andre excitedly thought that if he could sneak into Skrak's house, he'd be the first! As Skrak entered his home, Andre crawled through a cellar window into Skrak's basement studio, where he hid behind a stack of boxes.
Hours later, Skrak finally came downstairs to his studio; he pulled a curtain aside from his hapless models and began to paint. As Andre stretched from concealment to get a better look, he disturbed the precariously stacked boxes and caused them to fall, which alerted Skrak to Andre's presence. Thinking Andre to be a thief, Skrak pulled his handgun; but Andre explained that he was just a humble artist, and that he would give anything to learn the secret of Skrak's modern technique.
Still holding Andre at gunpoint, Skrak admitted that he was just an ordinary painter who worked directly from living models; the horrified Andre saw Skrak's deformed prisoners, and as he grabbed his plastic surgery kit, Skrak told Andre that he would model for Skrak's next hideous masterpiece!
Comments: Created by an unidentified writer and Al Eadeh (artist).
Skrak's first name wasn't mentioned, so I'll suggest "Anton".
That two-headed prisoner suggests that Skrak also had some knowledge of performing transplants.
This story kind of reminds me of the H.P. Lovecraft story Pickman's Model (which was adapted by Marvel in Tower of Shadows#9 (January, 1971)).
Profile by Ron Fredricks.
Skrak has no known connections to:
Francois no known connections to:
Andre has no known connections to:
Duval the art store owner has no known connections to:
Francois worked for Skrak, the acclaimed modernist painter; he ran errands
for Skrak and delivered his grotesque paintings--Francois hoped to learn
some of Skrak's artistic techniques by studying the paintings.
A struggling artist, the impoverished Andre lived in his attic studio
somewhere in Paris.
images: (without ads)
Marvel Tales I#127/4, p2, pan7 (Main Image - Skrak walking the streets of Paris at night)
Marvel Tales I#127/4, p2, pan6 (Headshot - Skrak speaking with Duval)
Marvel Tales I#127/4, p3, pan5 (Skrak in his cellar studio, pulling curtain from his models and preparing to paint, as Andre (right) secretly watches)
Marvel Tales I#127/4, p4, pan7 (Skrak prepares to perform plastic surgery on Andre (background), Skrak's disfigured portrait models chained to wall (foreground))
Marvel Tales I#127/4, p1, pan2 (Francois (glasses and beret) shows Skrak's paintings to two unidentified friends and Pierre the waiter)
Marvel Tales I#127/4, p1, pan3 (Francois (glasses and beret) defending Skrak's artwork)
Marvel Tales I#127/4, p2, pan1 (Andre wants to learn Skrak's secret)
Marvel Tales I#127/4, p2, pan2 (Andre in his art studio, frustrated with his own painting)
Marvel Tales I#127/4 (October, 1954) - unidentified writer, Al Eadeh (pencils and inks), Stan Lee (editor)
Last updated: 11/08/17
Any Additions/Corrections? please let me know.
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