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DAN BLAKE

Real Name: Unrevealed

Identity/Class: Extraterrestrial (Martian)

Occupation: Astronaut, spy

Group Membership: Covert Martian military;
   formerly US space program

Affiliations: Martian space program

Enemies: Jupiterians (Agent X, others)

Known Relatives: None

Aliases: None

Base of Operations: Mars;
   briefly USA, Earth

First Appearance: Tales to Astonish I#25/3 (November, 1961)

Powers/Abilities: This humanoid Martian is skilled in subterfuge and insinuating himself into American human culture without raising suspicion. He has excellent knowledge of astrophysics (compared to human standards of that era) and piloting human spacecraft (which would likely have been basic compared to Martian technology). This Martian's strength and fighting skills exceeds those of an average male human.

Height: 5'10" (by approximation)
Weight: Unrevealed
Eyes: Black
Hair: Red

History:

(Tales of Suspense I#25/2 (fb) - BTS) - Using a disguise undetectable to humans designed to blend in with with human society, a Martian spy infiltrated the Earth space program and manipulating his way to become the first astronaut to travel to Mars. His task was to stop human exploration of Mars by providing false data, but he was unaware that Jupiterian spy Agent X, also disguised as a human, was intent on eliminating the enemy Martian, but did not know the Martian's true identity.

(Tales of Suspense I#25/2) - The Martian in his secret disguise of Captain Dan Blake was a very popular astronaut, pampered by the Earth media for his bravery, but a mysterious man followed him and observed him with distrust and suspicion as Blake signed autographs on the street. The night before Blake's departure on his mission to Mars, the suspicious stranger snuck into the rocket.

   Once in space, Blake removed the mask that concealed his true face and revealed his Martian visage, thus confirming the stranger's suspicions. Blake's plan was the failure of the mission by communicating to the Earthlings the impossibility of exploring Mars due to a lethal band of cosmic radiation that penetrated the spaceship's hull once outside the Earth's atmosphere. But before he could start communications with Earth, The stranger (who was actually Agent X in disguise) attacked him and, after a fight, knocked him out. The Martian's fate from thereon is unrevealed. On Earth, at the space base, Dan Blake was mourned and remembered as a brave man who potentially saved the lives of many astronauts.

Comments: Created by uncredited writer, Jack Kirby, Dick Ayers.

In this story, dated November 1961, there are most likely the narrative seeds of two important series, The Mighty Thor (the name "Dan Blake" very similar to "Don Blake") published about a year later, and the Fantastic Four serial published the same month (their rocket encountering a cosmic radiation storm).

The Martian's disguise is male, so it's assumed his gender is male for the sake of this profile.

This story is set before the human race set foot on Mars, at least officially.

No credits are given in story. thanks to Grand Comics Database for the info, which suggests Stan Lee or Larry Lieber for author.

Jupiterians look almost Deviant-like in appearance.
--Luc

Profile by Jop.

CLARIFICATIONS :
Dan Blake has no known connections to:


Agent X

The Jupiterian Agent X adopted a human disguise to track a Martian spy with only the suspicion that it was the astronaut Dan Blake. Agent X followed Blake's movements and secretly climbed aboard the night before lift-off, enduring the pressure as it took off. Once in space, Agent X attacked the Martian spy known as Dan Blake and neutralized him. He then opened radio contact,  reporting there was no danger from radiation on Mars and that ship safety was assured, but the message was sent three million miles away and he was answered by the Jupiterian space control center. The Jupiterians thanked him for his war efforts against Mars (although Agent X quietly regretted hurting the Martian astronaut). Agent X then mimicked Dan Blake and passed Blake's intended message to Earth, pretending that he was dying from radiation in order to scare Earthlings from traveling to Mars.

 

 

 

 

 

 

--Tales to Astonish I#25/3


Jupiterians

The physical characteristics of this humanoid race of Jupiterians is similar to the Earthlings and the Martians involved, so much so that both extraterrestrial races, with the help of a mask, could pass themselves off as Earthlings with the aid of a rubbery-type mask. The Jupiterians' skin is green. Their level of civilization is quite advanced, most likely as much as the Martian one in this story, since both are competing for the colonization of other planets with space travel and apparently closely matched for war (or else no need for subterfuge).

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

--Tales to Astonish I#25/3


images: (without ads)
Tales to Astonish I#25/3, p1, pan2 (main image)
   p4, pan3 (headshot)
   p6, pan6 (Agent X)
   p6, pan2 (Jupiterians)


Appearances:
Tales to Astonish I#25/3 (November, 1961) - uncredited writer, Jack Kirby (pencils), Dick Ayers (inks), Stan Lee (editor)


First posted: 05/31/2021
Last updated: 05/31/2021

Any Additions/Corrections? please let me know.

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