Real Name: Johnny Yen
Identity/Class: Human apparent mutate and/or cyborg (or, partially transformed into robot; see comments in Dr. Benway's profile)
Occupation: Professional criminal
Group Membership: None identified
Affiliations: None identified
Enemies: Dr. Benway and his creations, his assistant Li, Sheriff Bradley Martin, and Benway's unidentified henchmen
Known Relatives: None
Base of Operations: Unrevealed;
formerly a clinic in his villa ten miles north of Jude, New Mexico
First Appearance: Marvel Team-Up I#97 (September, 1980)
Powers/Abilities: Johnny Yen's abilities are unrevealed; but having allegedly committed at least three murders, he has some skills, perhaps stabbing, shooting, etc.
In his mutated/robot/cyborg form, he had a powerful torso, arms, and legs, with bird-like hands; however, apparently when seen in mid-transition, he was either unable to move or had been immobilized by drugs or perhaps the nerve-paralyzer weapon...or something. Presumably once completed, he would have at least had some form of superhuman strength and durability, as well sharp talons.
Human form (unrevealed; only a photograph of his face was shown; he was
not referenced as particularly tall or short); mutated form
(unrevealed; perhaps 8' - 10')
Weight: Human form (unrevealed; see above); mutated form (unrevealed; perhaps 600 - 800 lbs.)
Eyes: Unrevealed (likely brown originally)
Hair: Brown (formerly black)
(Marvel Team-Up I#97 (fb) - BTS) - Based out of a clinic in his villa near Jude, New Mexico, Dr. W. Lee Benway lured criminals to him under the pretext of getting them across the border (to Mexico, presumably). He then harvested their brains, which he transferred into his creations. To finance his operations, he sold his victims' remaining organs on the black market.
(Marvel Team-Up I#97 (fb) - BTS) - Wanted for three counts of murder by the Los Angeles Police Department, Johnny Yen apparently fled to Jude, New Mexico, seeking to be aided in getting across the border only to be taken into Benway's clinic and undergoing mutation, either being rebuilt as a cyborg, having his brain or upper body grafted into a robot, and/or otherwise mutated.
(Marvel Team-Up I#97 (fb) - BTS) - While working as a bounty hunter, Spider-Woman sought to collect Johnny Yen. Via her intelligence gathering expert, Scotty McDowell, Jessica Drew followed his trail via bus to Jude, New Mexico.
(Marvel Team-Up I#97 (fb) - BTS) - Spider-Woman had the LAPD's Captain Walsh contact Sheriff Bradley (who was being paid off by Benway) to inform him that a bounty hunter would be coming to see him.
(Marvel Team-Up I#97 - BTS) - Spider-Woman met with Sheriff Martin, asking about Johnny Yen, and Martin told her that he thought he had seen Martin in town but that he had headed up to a clinic, giving her directions to Benway's villa.
Martin then called Dr. Benway, advising him to tell his guards to stay on their toes, as he had super-powered company on the way.
Entering the clinic, Spider-Woman noted non-human creature patrolling the shadows before finding Yen, who repeatedly asked for help; pulling back the sheet, she saw his lower body in the form of some monstrous, hairy creature with bird-like hands.
(Marvel Team-Up I#97 - BTS) - Dr. Benway dropped Spider-Woman with a blast from his nerve-paralyzer, and he imprisoned her somewhere different
Comments: Created by Steven Grant, Carmine Infantino, and Alan Gordon.
(Marvel Team-Up I#97) - Sheriff Martin reported the Hulk's presence to Dr. Benway, who noted that he had finally earned his pay. Dr. Benway then instructed Li to assemble the men as there was business to attend to, dismissing her concerns that his patient would die if he stopped the procedure, and noting that while they had other "guests," this might be a once in a lifetime chance to encounter the Hulk.
This guy looked pretty similar to the upper body of Johnny Yen when he was uncovered by Spider-Woman. However, that man's identity was not revealed, and it may have been that beings undergoing Benway's process all looked pretty similar at some point. As Li had said that that patient would die if Benway stopped the procedure at that point, and Benway certainly abandoned the patient, but it is not confirmed whether the patient died or not.
Interestingly, the form identified by Spider-Woman as Johnny Yen did not look much like the picture Spider-Woman showed Sheriff Martin, nor does it look like what you would expect someone named Johnny Yen to look like. The pictured character looked to have black hair and more typically Asian features in the picture, whereas the being in mid-transition had brown hair and less typically Asian features. If it wasn't art error, I don't know how Spider-Woman knew who he was, but perhaps he said his name off panel or there was a record with his name on it...or something.
There is no indication of what happened to Johnny
There's a discussion of the nature of Benway's creations (including Yen) here.
Profile by Snood.
Johnny Yen should be distinguished from:
Marvel Team-Up I#97 (September, 1980) - Steven Grant (writer), Carmine Infantino (penciler), Alan Gordon (inker), Dennis O'Neil (editor)
First posted: 12/08/2021
Last updated: 12/08/2021
Any Additions/Corrections? please let me know.
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