Real Name: Sylvia Karnowsky
Identity/Class: Human tech user
Occupation: Research scientist (electrical engineer?)
Group Membership: Stark International Research Division
Affiliations: Iron Man (Tony Stark)
Known Relatives: None
Aliases: Ms. Karnowsky
Base of Operations: Stark International facility on Long Island, New York
First Appearance: Iron Man I#157 (April, 1982)
Powers/Abilities: Sylvia Karnowsky is presumed to have the skills and training needed to function as a productive researcher. However, the college or university (or other institution of higher learning) at which she received her education has not been revealed.
Sylvia Karnowsky is not known to possess any superhuman powers or abilities. Her skill at making chicken salad sandwiches has not been assessed.
Height: Unrevealed (she was seated when
confronted by Iron Man, but she did not appear to be particularly short
nor particularly tall; perhaps 5'4" to 5'9")
Weight: Unrevealed (she was relatively lean, so perhaps 110 to 130 lbs. depending on her height)
Hair: Light brown
(Iron Man I#157 (fb) - BTS) - Sylvia Karnowsky was hired by Stark International to work in their Research Division.
(Iron Man I#157 (fb) - BTS) - At some point, Ms. Karnowsky was assigned to work on a project that involved turning electricity into unleaded gas. She conducted her research in a laboratory in Stark International's Long Island facility.
(Iron Man I#157 (fb) - BTS) - One summer evening, Ms. Karnowsky chose to put in a little overtime in order to help pay her bills. While working on an experiment to turn electricity into unleaded gasoline, Ms. Karnowsky drew power from the central generator through a private sub-basement lab. Unfortunately, that lab was then being (secretly) used by Tony Stark to run tests on his Iron Man armor, and the extra power that Karnowsky was draining to her lab caused a tremendous surge of electricity to flow through Stark's test circuits. As the control panel began to overload, Stark had to immediately shut down everything in the lab to prevent his armor from being damaged.
(Iron Man I#157 (fb) - BTS) - The energy surge that went through Stark's armor was detected by a cloaked Therhin starship in orbit. Needing help against the energy-devouring spores that had damaged it, the Therhin ship scanned Earth and identified the Iron Man armor as "the greatest power in the smallest mechanical package."
(Iron Man I#157) - Having finished her work on the experiment, Sylvia was making herself a chicken salad sandwich when Iron Man burst into her lab, demanding to know "Just what the blue blazes is going on here?" Startled by the sudden entrance, Sylvia told Iron Man that he had given her a fright, identified herself, and stated that she was just putting in a little overtime because she "gotta pay the bills." When Iron Man asked her if she realized what she was doing, Sylvia replied that right then she was making a chicken salad sandwich but she had been working on an experiment to turn electricity into unleaded gas. She then asked IM if he wanted to see a demonstration.
At that moment, the laboratory was suddenly filled with a chilling, unearthly glow that froze Sylvia "stiff as a board" but left Iron Man untouched. And then, before the hero could do anything about the situation, a second beam of light entered the lab, enveloped Iron Man, and faded away, taking him with it. Once Iron Man had been removed, the stasis effect ended and Sylvia regained mobility. Slightly disoriented, Sylvia apologized to Iron Man because her mind seemed to have wandered, then noticed that Iron Man was no longer present. Unaware of what had really happened to him, she assumed that he had quickly left without saying goodbye. Miffed at his apparent disappearing act, Sylvia thought to herself, "Hmph. And I thought super heroes were such stable types!"
(Iron Man I#157 - BTS) - Sometime later, as he was being sent back to Earth after helping the Therhin deal with its spore problem, an exhausted Iron Man thought to himself that he sure hoped that Ms. Karnowsky hadn't finished that chicken sandwich because he was starved.
Comments: Created by Alan Kupperberg, David Michelinie and Dan Green.
I don't know what qualifications one would need in order to be employed by a Research Division. Would Sylvia be considered to be a scientist or was she a technician? Does the fact that she worked with electricity mean that Sylvia probably had a degree in electrical engineering?
The first beam that entered Ms. Karnowsky's laboratory was a stasis beam that seemed to freeze her (in both body and mind) in a moment of time. The second beam was a transport beam that teleported Iron Man out of the building and then pulled him upwards to the orbiting Therhin starship.
Profile by Donald Campbell.
Sylvia Karnowsky has no known connections to
images: (without ads)
Iron Man I#157, page 6, panel 4 (main image - frozen by stasis beam)
page 7, panel 3 (head shot)
page 6, panel 2 (meeting Iron Man)
Iron Man I#157 (April, 1982) - Alan Kupperberg (plot/pencils), David Michelinie (script), Dan Green (inks), Jim Salicrup (editor)
First Posted: 07/18/2022
Last updated: 07/18/2022
Any Additions/Corrections? please let me know.
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