Classification: Semi-humanoid extraterrestrial race
Location/Base of Operations: Planet Deth,
unidentified star system, unidentified galaxy;
it was orbited by at least a pair of moons;
active in the pre-modern era (specifically 1960, see comments), at least
Known Members: Ozak,
Affiliations: None identified
Enemies: Humanity (especially Les Gage and US federal security agent Craig)
First Appearance: Tales of Suspense I#8/3 (March,
Powers/Abilities: Metamorphs, Dethans could perfectly mimic the form of other beings after just seeing that being for a couple seconds. It is unrevealed whether they mimicked their target to the point of replicating fingerprints and/or DNA, but they were grossly identical, at least. They were not limited to mimicking bipeds only, as Ozak took the form of a dog (with a volume of perhaps 50% of a human's). They could even mimic a being they had only seen in a picture. It may be that Ozak had greater skill in metamorphing/mimicking than others of his people, and that may be why he was chosen for his mission.
The Dethans had spacecraft capable of
interstellar travel, at least, if not intergalactic travel. Such craft
could be operated by and could certainly carry a single pilot. The craft
could also be operated remotely; a pilot might disembark in orbit of a
planet and remotely send the craft to one of the planet's moon's, for
example. The spacecraft's range, speed, carrying capacity, and other
features are unrevealed. It is further unrevealed how many such craft
they had, but as they planned to conquer Earth, they presumably had
enough to transport their armies.
More information on Ozak's spaceship is available here.
The Dethans also had space
suits they could use to travel from a planet's orbit to its
surface. This would presumably indicate it had propulsion and navigation
systems as well as life support, protection from the heat and friction
Traits: The Dethans were imperialistic, seeking to
conquer other worlds.
They were also prone to basing an
entire plot on an assumption; for instance, they would assume that they
could not conquer a world if their scout failed to contact them, and the
plot would be cancelled without further inspection.
Type: Bilaterally symmetric semi-humanoid
Eyes:Two (on head; white; no visible iris)
Fingers:Three (plus opposing thumb); variable
Skin color: Green, scaled or plated ; variable
Average height: Approximately 5'10" (variable to an unrevealed extent)
(Tales of Suspense I#8/3 (fb) - BTS) - The Dethans plotted to conquer Earth.
(Tales of Suspense I#8/3) - The leader of the Dethans summoned Ozak to establish a beachhead in the United States (see comments), and he ordered Ozak to undermine the country so it would not be able to repel their forces; but the ruler warned Ozak that if he failed to contact their homeworld as scheduled, the invasion plans would be cancelled.
Ozak traveled to Earth and began using his powers to imitate newscasters, politicians, and military leaders, leading to chaos, protests, and riots across the nations.
(Tales of Suspense I#8/3 - BTS) - However, Les Gage, the newscaster Ozak had first ambushed and replaced, revealed how he had been impersonated by an alien, and US federal security agent Craig set up a sting operation where they led Ozak to impersonate a beloved elder statesman.
(Tales of Suspense I#8/3) - When Ozak did not know the password given to the real statesman, he was exposed. Attempting to escape by posing as a dog he had seen in an advertising poster, Ozak unwittingly impersonated a heroic dog that had been launched into space as part of the space program the night before. Knowing that dog couldn't be on Earth at that time, Craig recognized the captured Ozak, who was presumably imprisoned.
(Tales of Suspense I#8/3 - BTS) - With Ozak apparently unable to contact his superiors, the planned conquest on Earth was presumably cancelled.
Comments: Created by Stan Lee, Larry Lieber, and Steve Ditko.
Like many of these horror, monster, or
suspense tales, this story works best if left at the time of
publication, 1960, and not part of the sliding timescale.
Ozak has his own profile, and you can
read more about the details of his mission there.
That profile contains a lot of information about the Dethans, but it is not a complete/full race profile...and the Dethans deserve a page as much as any other race.
I also used the best images of Ozak in this profile, because there's not much else to work with. The image of Ozak fleeing from Craig would be good if it wasn't colored solid red, for whatever reason...
Since Ozak and the ruler
were the only two Dethans depicted in this story, the population of
their planet is unrevealed.--Ron Fredricks
The picture of the leader stabbing the
globe to point out the location for Ozak to target looks like northern
Texas or possibly Oklahoma...maybe even New Mexico.
I personally like the idea of it being in Texas...don't mess with Texas.
Profile by Snood.
The Dethans should be distinguished from:
Home to the Dethans, Deth is a planet in an unidentified star system and an unidentified galaxy.
As Ozak did not need any special equipment to survive on Earth, it might be assumed that its atmosphere and gravity are similar to Earth's, but it is also possible that Ozak could just adapt his body to survive on Earth.
(Tales of Suspense I#8/3) - Ozak was sent from Deth to
lead a mission to prepare Earth for the Dethans conquering.
--Tales of Suspense I#8/3
Note: Since the
Dethans chose Earth, one might assume it was also in the Milky Way
galaxy and in a relatively close star system, but perhaps they had warp
technology or something that allowed them to travel greater distances.
images: (without ads)
Tales of Suspense I#8/3, title page (full/transforming image of Ozak);
story pg. 1, panel 1 (stabbing Earth globe);
panel 2 (leader instructing Ozak);
panel 3 (Deth surface, building, and moons);
panel 4 (Ozak's ship leaving Deth; half of planet shown);
panel 5 (Ozak's space suit);
panel 7 (Ozak full, untransformed face)
Tales of Suspense I#8/3 (March, 1960) - Stan Lee (plotter, editor), Larry Lieber (scripter), Steve Ditko (artist)
First posted: 05/02/2020
Last updated: 05/02/2020
Any Additions/Corrections? please let me know.
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