Classification: Human mutates (1940s-1950s era)
Location/Base of Operations: Bomb crater and
surrounding area, remote location, Nevada, USA
Known Members: Keith Adams,
Randy Benson, Brian Stover, others
First Appearance: Mystic I#4/4 (September,
Powers/Abilities: Devil Birds have large
extended membranous wings that allow them to easily soar on the
updrafts of smoky gas expelled from under a pocket of the Earth's crust
at bomb site. This gas also sustains them and they require no food or
drink, but must stay in the ravaged environment of the bomb site. They
appear to be able to live indefinitely in their radioactive
environment. Incapable of sound, they communicate basic information
telepathically with an instinctual drive to create more Devil Birds by
forcing humans into the transforming effects of the dark crater's gas.
Their short tails may help them steer and their claws can tear at
clothing and flesh. Despite their size and ungainly appearance, they
can lift themselves into the air from standing.
Traits: Forced to live in a small radioactive
smoke-filled environment of about two miles diameter, Devil Birds are
communal and cooperative in forcing new human victims into the crater
to be transformed. They consider their form to be liberating from the
human existence. They are patient and enjoy soaring in the smoky
Type: Bilaterally symmetric human mutates with
Eyes: Two (on head; yellow)
Fingers: Four claws at wing "wrist" (plus fifth extended wing finger/tendon to wingtip)
Toes: Four talons (three forward plus one opposing)
Skin color: Green hide (scales?)
Average height: 8'6" (by approximation, excluding folded wings)
(Mystic I#4/4 (fb) - BTS) - In the wake of the USA
testing a H-bomb in Nevada in the mid-1940s, the Earth's crust in
the area fractured and pockets of dangerous gases and lava escaped, especially from the
deep dark bomb crater, and combined with the radiation. People who investigated the area and fell into
the smoke-filled crater transformed
quickly (after a short burst of pain) into large monstrous Devil Birds.
These new creatures soared in the escaping smoke, which also sustained them, and
they pushed new people toward the crater to become transformed as well.
Roving photographer Randy Benson journeyed to the crater and was
likewise unwillingly transfigured. Concerned about his close friend's
disappearance, Brian Stover set off to investigate with another friend,
(Mystic I#4/4) - Stover and
Adams reached the edge of the test site, where a local old man warned
them of Devil Birds he had seen flying in the smoke-filled landscape
and of people never returning, but the pair ignored him. Stover and
Adams wore protective gear and became enveloped in the smoky gaseous
environment. A mile in and the compass failed, then the pair saw the
outline of Devil Bird fly nearby. Further in, the pair reached the
crater's edge with smoky gas belching out and Devil Birds flying in
it. One landed behind the two men and Adams ran, but Stover was drawn
back to the crater's edge, where he found Benson's camera. Two Devil
Birds menaced Stover and he fell backward into the crater. As Stover
fell, the warm gas began to feel soothing until sudden pain made him
realize he was metamorphosing. His arms became wings and he flew upward
out of the crater, joining other Devil Birds soaring in the life-giving
smoke. Stover recognized a fellow Devil Bird as Benson and together
they pushed and grabbed Adams with their claws until Adams also fell
into the smoky crater to become transformed.
Comments: Created by Basil Wolverton.
Maybe they disappeared if the devastation was cleared by a super-scientist or super-sorcerer. Or maybe the monster hunter Ulysses Bloodstone destroyed them in an Untold Tale.
A truly monstrous design, combining visual bird aspects of vulture, penguin and pteranodon, plus other beasts to create a patchwork creature in a story reminiscent of a modern Lovecraft or Clark Ashton Smith.
Profile by Grendel Prime.
Devil Birds have no known connections to:
Keith Adams was a good friend of Brian Stover and
joined him on his search for his missing colleague Randy Benson. The
duo traveled to Benson's last known location at the devastated lands
around a detonated H-bomb that had cracked the Earth's crust. Adams and
Stover ignored a local man's warning. Donning protective suits and
filter masks to protect against dangerous gas trailing out from under
the ground, they encountered the monstrous-looking Devil Birds in the
ravaged landscape. Adams became separated from Stover, who soon fell
into the bomb crater and quickly transformed into a Devil Bird after
encountering the already transfigured Benson. Both Stover and Benson,
as menacing Devil Birds, pushed Adams into the crater where he too
would transform into a fellow Devil Bird.
Brian Stover was a close friend of roving
photographer Randy Benson, who had disappeared near the ravaged area
around a detonated H-bomb that had fractured the Earth's crust. Stover
and another friend Keith Adams drove there, but ignored a local man's
warning. The pair donned protective suits and filter masks to protect
against dangerous gas trailing out from under the ground; they soon
encountered the monstrous-looking Devil Birds in the devastated
landscape. While Adams sought escape, Stover was drawn to
near the bomb crater's edge where he found Benson's camera. However,
Devil Birds landed and forced Stover to the edge where he fell. The gas
rising from within the Earth quickly metamorphosed him into a Devil Bird.
He soared upward and silently recognized the previously transformed
Benson. Together, they found Adams and pushed him toward the crater's
edge to change him into a fellow Devil Bird.
images: (without ads)
Mystic I#4/4, p1, pan1 (main image)
p4, pan6 (rear view, standing)
p6, pan1 (many gliding)
p6, pan4 (Adams)
p2, pan7 (Stover, human form)
p5, pan7 (Stover, Devil Bird form)
Mystic I#4/4 (September, 1951) - Basil Wolverton (writer, pencils, inks), Stan Lee (editor)
First Posted: 10/31/2021
Last updated: 10/31/2021
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 Races