main image

THE TERROR

Real Name: Laslo Pevely (see comments)

Identity/Class: Human mutate (1940s era to present)

Occupation: Retired; formerly unrevealed (see comments)

Group Membership: None

Affiliations: Dr. John Storm

Enemies: Dran Decker, Greco, Mister Z (W.C. Tuttle), Bull Murdock, Nazi slavers, Old One and Poison, Inc., Potoro and his looters, Sitting Bullseye

Known Relatives: None

Aliases: None

Base of Operations: Mystic Meadows Home for the Elderly, somewhere in Connecticut;
formerly mobile

First Appearance: Mystic Comics I#5/4 (March, 1941)

Powers/Abilities: After being injected with a serum derived from the paranormal dog Rex, Pevely's body underwent a physical change (usually accompanied by a fiery vapor) which transformed him into the Terror--initially, whenever he was angered by an act of evil, his face took on a pale demonic/skull-like appearance, and he was granted enhanced strength (perhaps Class 10); once his anger was appeased, the Terror would transform back to Pevely--shortly afterward, he was able to trigger his transformations at will.

The Terror could leap from great heights without injury, and he had some degree of varying invulnerability--although he was uninjured after being struck by a car, there were instances when he was rendered unconscious by getting clubbed on the back of his head. When thrown into a lit fireplace, he (and his clothing) proved to be fireproof, and the flames seemed to strengthen him.

The Terror's brief crime-fighting career ended when the effects of the serum seemed to wear off "after a year or so" (as per Pevely).

In his senior years, Pevely was confined to a wheelchair, but when his power unexpectedly returned, he was completely revitalized to his original form as the Terror, although his face was no longer pale and appeared to be more demonic than skull-like; he also seemed to have the extrasensory ability to sense evil, and he was somehow able to manifest his original clothing (see comments). When he returned to his normal form, he was once again elderly.

In his original incarnation, the Terror was a fierce fighter, but he never seemed to kill his enemies directly; in his modern incarnation, he was more ruthless.

Height: (Pevely) 5'8"; (Terror) 6'1" (by approximation)
Weight: (Pevely) 160 lbs.; (Terror) 190 (by approximation)
Eyes: (Pevely) blue; (Terror) brown
Hair: (Pevely) black, later bald; (Terror) black

History:

(Mystic Comics I#5/4) - The past of Laslo Pevely is unrevealed, but one dark and stormy night, he was dressed in full formal evening attire (including a cape) and driving near the hilltop laboratory of Doctor Storm. Suddenly, a bolt of lightning struck Pevely's car--blinded and shocked, he lost control and crashed into a tree.

Crawling from the wreckage of his vehicle, the crash-victim found he had amnesia and couldn't remember his name (see comments); seeking aid, he staggered to the doorway of Storm's lab, where the exhausted stranger collapsed and was discovered by the doctor. Storm realized that the unknown man's past was gone due to his amnesia, and he only had the blank future remaining, so Storm decided to use him for a revolutionary experiment.

Storm injected the unconscious man with a serum extracted from his dog Rex, then subjected him to "high radio frequency waves "--if his experiment proved successful, the stranger would be endowed with untold strength, and Storm would provide the world with the most powerful foe of crime in the annals of time.

But Greco and his henchmen broke into Storm's lab--the crime-boss wanted to use Storm's knowledge to further his criminal pursuits; Storm refused to cooperate, so Greco had his thugs mercilessly beat Storm.

Just then, the unconscious amnesiac revived and heard the scuffle--the sight of the gangsters beating the innocent Storm caused the serum within him to react to his mounting anger, and in a fiery mist, an amazing transformation took place as the stranger changed into a frightening being with a skull-like face.

Upon seeing the terrifying figure, the frightened gangsters fled, but the transformed stranger caught up with them and avenged their deadly assault on Storm. His anger appeased, the strange figure transformed back to his normal human form and returned to Doctor Storm; but the gangsters' blows had been too much for the frail doctor, and as he died, Storm's final words told the stranger that the world would know him as... The Terror. As he solemnly stood over Storm's grave, the Terror vowed he would continue his fight against crime and evil.

(Mystic Comics I#6/4) - In Washington, DC, Pevely was among hundreds of well-wishers standing outside the White House on President Franklin Roosevelt's birthday. When Nazi agent Dran Decker shoved a woman out of his way, Pevely was enraged by the rude behavior and turned into the Terror to punch Decker; the Nazi fled and dropped a package he was carrying. Pevely picked up the package and delivered it to the President--within the box was the dead body of a military official, shrunken to doll-size!

Pevely investigated and tracked Decker to a doll company, where the Nazi kept a poisonous shrinking chemical; Pevely learned that Decker planned to use the shrinking formula on the President, and his anger transformed him into the Terror. After capturing Decker and his henchman, Pevely later returned to the White House and was personally thanked by the President.

(Mystic Comics I#7/6) - In Midvale, crime-boss Potoro and his gang of looters began robbing small-businesses in the city--having read about the crime-wave in a newspaper, Pevely went to investigate. After days of searching for the gang, Pevely happened to enter a clothing store just as the looters began their robbery. Transforming into the Terror, he fought with the criminals until one of the looters struck him on the back of his head and knocked him out--the unconscious Terror transformed back to Pevely.

Potoro got the idea of taking Pevely to the city park and shooting him there, as a warning to any one who dared to resist the looters. At the park, Potoro revealed his ambitions to expand his criminal operation nationwide. Angered beyond measure, Pevely became the Terror and attacked the looters; the cowardly criminals deserted their boss and scattered, leaving Potoro alone to face the Terror, who meted out his own brand of justice on the crime-boss by punching Potoro in the face--with his work done, the Terror faded into the night, ever in search of new adventure.

(Mystic Comics I#8/5) - While in Europe (possibly England), Pevely read a newspaper article about a ship that had mysteriously disappeared in Nazi-occupied waters--the vessel had been carrying war-refugees bound for the United States. Pevely made arrangements to be aboard another ship carrying the next batch of refugees, and he discovered that the captain and crew were actually Nazi agents. Pevely transformed into the Terror and commandeered control of the vessel, then learned that the abducted war-refugees were being used by the Nazis as slave labor, to build railroads across the deserts of Africa.

Later, the Terror went to the burning deserts of Africa to bring justice to the Nazi slavers directly (The story ended at this point, so details of the Terror's battle with the Nazi slavers are unrecorded, but presumably he was victorious).

(Mystic Comics I#9/3) - Back in America, Pevely read about the poisoning death of a newspaper editor, so he investigated as the Terror; he learned that the editor was the first in a series of killings committed by Poison, Inc., a murder-for-hire organization masterminded by the Old One. The Terror traced the killers back to their hideout and fought the members of Poison, Inc., but rather than face execution for his crimes, the Old One committed suicide with his own poison.

(Mystic Comics I#10/9) - In Centerville, gangster Bull Murdock formed a criminal alliance with the mysterious masked Mister Z for a murderous insurance scheme. They forced men who had recently taken out life insurance policies to designate an alias as their beneficiary, then they murdered the policy holder; later, Murdock would use the alias to collect the insurance payouts.

As part of his investigation of the murders, Pevely took out an insurance policy on himself, and the marauding gang broke into his apartment to force him to sign over his policy. Pevely transformed into the Terror and fought the gang, but (once again) a cowardly blow from behind stunned him. The gangsters threw the dazed Terror into a lit fireplace, but the flames revived him and gave him strength; the Terror leaped out of the fireplace and fought the gangsters. After punching Bull Murdock, the Terror tackled and unmasked Mister Z, only to discover that he was the president of the insurance company. After he tied up his prisoners for the police, the Terror went out into the night to continue his unending search for crime.

(Sensational She-Hulk I#15 (fb) - BTS) - But "after a year or so" (per Pevely), the effects of the serum wore off, his powers faded away, and the Terror was no more.

(Sensational She-Hulk I#15 - BTS) - The subsequent events of Laslo Pevely's life are unrevealed, but decades later, he was a wheelchair-bound senior citizen and a resident of Mystic Meadows Home for the Elderly.

(Sensational She-Hulk I#15) - While watching a television soap-opera with his fellow residents, Pevely felt a tingling sensation and realized his powers were returning because evil was afoot, so he rolled his chair into a storeroom to make his transformation into the Terror.

In his office, Fenton (the manager of Mystic Meadows) and a shyster lawyer were discussing plans to turn the residents of the retirement home out on the streets so the property could be used for condos--the vengeful Terror burst through the office door and apparently slaughtered the two. The Terror returned to the storeroom and transformed back to Pevely just as the bodies were discovered.

(Sensational She-Hulk I#16) - As the police surrounded Mystic Meadows to investigate the two homicides, the cosmic being known as the Critic appeared and performed a psionic-scan of the vicinity to find one mind in a state of feverish excitement; investigating further, the Critic appeared in Pevely's room, where he scanned Pevely's mind and reviewed the events of his origin as the Terror (see comments).

(Sensational She-Hulk I#17) - The Critic teleported Pevely to take part in a battle against the Band of the Bland. Pevely rolled his chair into the woods, transformed into the Terror, then fought Sitting Bullseye--Sitting Bullseye was left badly beaten from the fight, but the final fate of the Terror is unrevealed.

Comments: Created by Phil Sturm (writer) and Syd Shores (artist).

This character's civilian identity was never revealed in his 1940s appearances, and his name of "Laslo Pevely" was not mentioned until Sensational She-Hulk I#16--I guess the amnesiac eventually recalled his true name (maybe he remembered to check his driver's license), or else it could have just been an identity he assumed--for the purpose of this profile (and any related profiles), I'm just assuming he was always Pevely.

Pevely was never shown working at any job, and he never seemed to be hurting for cash, so maybe he was independently wealthy, or perhaps he was living off of Doctor Storm's savings.

No explanation was ever given for Rex the dog's bizarre condition--maybe he was infected with a mutated form of rabies. Or maybe Rex was somehow channeling the same power that Mark Todd used when he became the Blazing Skull. Or maybe when that gorilla attacked, Rex was somehow imbued with the power of a Spirit of Vengeance (best known for empowering the numerous Ghost Riders throughout history)--that would explain his skull-face and great strength; and maybe that serum Doctor Storm extracted from Rex contained the weakened essence of that supernatural power, which was later transferred to Pevely--this supernatural source would explain the skull-faces, the fiery vapor that preceded Pevely's transformation, and how the elderly Pevely was able to "magically" manifest his original clothing.

Sensational She-Hulk I#16 featured a 3-page review of the Terror's origin when the Critic gave Pevely a mind-scan, but there were some discrepancies from the original story (e.g. Doctor Storm's and the Terror's original physical appearances; there were only two gangsters, and Greco was absent; the nude Pevely manifested his costume from the very beginning; the Terror literally ripped the gangsters apart (off panel, of course); and Storm was never beaten, but died from a heart attack)--if this wasn't intended to be a ret-con, then maybe the elderly Laslo Pevely was just misremembering the details of his origin.

Profile by Ron Fredricks

CLARIFICATIONS:
The Terror has no known connections to


Dr. John Storm has no known connections to


Rex the dog has no known connections to


Greco has no known connections to


Dr. John Storm


A famous scientist and doctor, the elderly Storm occupied a hilltop laboratory with his faithful dog Rex. An inexplicable series of events would lead to Storm creating a crime-fighting hero.

One night, an escaped gorilla happened to come crashing into Storm's lab and went on a rampage (Sure, happens all the time). Storm was saved by Rex when the dog somehow transformed into a skull-faced creature with great strength; Rex killed the gorilla and saved his master, but at the cost of his own life. Storm took Rex's carcass to his lab and extracted a serum from it that he later injected into the unconscious Laslo Pevely.

But Greco and his henchmen broke into Storm's lab--Greco wanted to use Storm's knowledge to help with his criminal pursuits; Storm refused to cooperate, so the thugs began to give Storm a beating. Just then, Pevely revived, and when he saw the elderly doctor being assaulted, the serum in his body was triggered by his anger, and he was transformed into a skull-faced avenger of evil.

The transformed Pevely dealt with Greco and his henchmen, but when he returned to Storm, he found that the thugs' blows had been too much for the frail doctor--as he died, Storm officially dubbed Pevely's alter-ego as... The Terror.

--Mystic Comics I#5/4












Rex


Dr. John Storm's faithful dog, Rex was a mutt (apparently a beagle mix, as per Laslo Pevely).

One night, an escaped gorilla burst into Dr. Storm's lab and went on a rampage. Rex snarled, and for unspecified reasons, his head assumed a skull-like appearance and he demonstrated remarkable strength (see comments). To defend his master, the fearless dog leaped at the gorilla and tore out the ape's throat. But although he saved his master, the strain of the battle had been too much for Rex, and the dog's head returned to normal as he died.

Storm carried the dog's carcass back to his lab and extracted Rex's blood--after filtering out all the known blood combinations, Storm hoped to transfer the remaining fluid into some living being to grant him superhuman strength.

Shortly afterwards, Storm injected the serum into Laslo Pevely, and thus transformed him into... The Terror

--Mystic Comics I#5/4
















Greco


Greco (first name unrevealed) was a gangster; one night, he and his three henchmen broke into the laboratory of Doctor John Storm. Greco wanted Storm to work with him in his criminal pursuits, but the doctor refused to cooperate, so Greco ordered his thugs to viciously beat the elderly doctor.

But then the criminals were attacked by Storm's "experiment"--a skull-faced adversary, whom Greco described as "a terror".

The horrified criminals fled the lab in their open-top roadster, but as they drove under a rocky ledge, their skull-faced pursuer jumped off and landed in the car. After punching the three henchmen, the Terror turned his attention to Greco. Greco was killed when the Terror's powerful grip twisted his gun-hand back upon him and he unintentionally shot himself. The Terror jumped out just before the roadster sped over a cliff.

--Mystic Comics I#5/4






images: (without ads)
Mystic Comics I#5/4, p1, pan1 (Main Image - Laslo Pevely (left), transitional form in mist (center), The Terror (right))
Mystic Comics I#6/4. p2, pan4 (Headshot - The Terror)
Mystic Comics I#5/4, p5, pan7 (Headshot - Laslo Pevely, circa 1941)
Mystic Comics I#5/4, p6, pan1 (fiery vapor transforms Laslo Pevely into the Terror; Greco and his henchmen (foreground))
Sensational She-Hulk I#16, p17, pan4 (elderly Laslo Pevely in wheelchair)
Sensational She-Hulk I#17, p18, pan4 (The Terror (modern age, left) leaps down upon Sitting Bullseye (right))
Mystic Comics I#5/4, p3, pan8 (Doctor Storm holds test tube of serum extracted from Rex)
Mystic Comics I#5/4, p5, pan4 (Doctor Storm refuses to cooperate with Greco (right))
Sensational She-Hulk I#16, p18, pan6 (Doctor Storm (as he appeared in Terror origin recap))
Mystic Comics I#5/4, p2, pan7 (Rex's face takes on a skull-like appearance)
Mystic Comics I#5/4, p2, pan8 (transformed Rex attacks gorilla; Doctor Storm (background))
Sensational She-Hulk I#16, p18, pan4 (Rex's skull begins to glow (in Terror origin recap))
Mystic Comics I#5/4, p5, pan3 (Greco (right) tries to coerce Doctor Storm's cooperation)
Mystic Comics I#5/4, p5, pan3 (Greco (left) orders his three henchmen to seize Doctor Storm)


Appearances:
Mystic Comics I#5/4 (March, 1941) - Phil Sturm (writer), Syd Shores (pencils), George Klein (inks), Joe Simon (editor)
Mystic Comics I#6/4 (October, 1941) - unidentified writer, unidentified artist, Joe Simon (editor)
Mystic Comics I#7/5 (December, 1941) - unidentified writer, unidentified artist, Joe Simon (editor)
Mystic Comics I#8/5 (March, 1942) - Otto Binder (writer), unidentified artist, Stan Lee (editor)
Mystic Comics I#9/3 (May, 1942) - unidentified writer, Don Rico (pencils and inks), Stan Lee (editor)
Mystic Comics I#10/9 (August, 1942) - Otto Binder (writer), Don Rico (pencils and inks), Stan Lee (editor)
Sensational She-Hulk I#15 (May, 1990) - Steve Gerber (writer), Bryan Hitch (penciler), Jim Sanders III (inker), Jim Novak (letters), Glynis Oliver (colors), Bobbie Chase (editor)
Sensational She-Hulk I#16 (June, 1990) - Steve Gerber (writer), Bryan Hitch (penciler), Jim Sanders III (inker), Jim Novak (letters), Glynis Oliver (colors), Bobbie Chase (editor)
Sensational She-Hulk I#17 (July, 1990) - Steve Gerber (writer), Bryan Hitch (penciler), Jim Sanders III (inker), Jim Novak (letters), Glynis Oliver (colors), Bobbie Chase (editor)


First Posted: 10/31/18
Last Updated: 11/02/18

Any Additions/Corrections? please let me know.

Non-Marvel Copyright info
All other characters mentioned or pictured are ™ and © 1941-2099 Marvel Characters, Inc. All Rights Reserved. If you like this stuff, you should check out the real thing!
Please visit The Marvel Official Site at:
http://www.marvel.com

Special Thanks to www.g-mart.com for hosting the Appendix, Master List, etc.!

Back to Characters