Thursday, April 9, 2015


Born of Fury! Sworn to Vengeance! He is...The Destructor

Back to more mainstream, Atlas Comic's The Destructor was written by Archie (Manhunter) Goodwin, with art by Steve (Tiger Man, Morlock 2001) Ditko. Wally (T.H.U.N.D.E.R. Agents) Wood inked the first two issues. It ran four issues. Larry (Rawhide Kid) Lieber, brother of Stan Lee, provided all four covers. 

Jay Hunter was a low-life, young thug-in-training. His father was a noble scientist trying to come up with a formula to expand man's senses, to create a super-hero. When Jay's crime lord boss marked him for death, both he and his father were mortally wounded. There was enough serum for one. His father gave it to him. He became the Destructor.

Almost an anti-Spider-Man, Jay Hunter was shunned by his high school crowd because he used to shake them down for money. Otherwise, it stuck pretty close to the Spider-Man formula.

The Destructor #1 
"The Birth...of a Superhero"
The Destructor now sets out to destroy all of Max Raven's operations. Unable to stop the Destructor on his own, Max enlists the aid of the hired assassin, Slaymaster, to eliminate the Destructor.
After destroying yet another Mob operation, the Destructor contacts Max Raven, who proposes that they settle this feud, once and for all. They are to meet at the Giant Novelty Company. Slaymaster will be lying in wait.
As the Destructor arrives at the Giant Novelty Company, he is attacked by Slaymaster. Overmatched at first, The Destructor recovers and dispatches the paid assassin.
The Destructor returns to Max Raven's headquarters, disguising himself as Slaymaster. He reveals himself to be the Destructor and is about to unmask in front of Raven. Hearing footsteps approaching, he slips away while Max Raven is gunned down by his own men, who fear he is losing control of the Mob operation.
The Destructor then reveals his identity to a dying Max Raven and vows to continue his fight for justice.
The Destructor #2  "You've had it Destructor!"
At the waterfront, The Destructor disrupts yet another Syndicate operation. He captures Lash, who has replaced the late Max Raven as Crime Boss. Lash is quick to divulge who the head of the Syndicate is to the Destructor, who dangles him over the harbor.
As the Destructor departs, a figure emerges from the shadows... Deathgrip. Serving the Combine, which seeks to control all Syndicate operations, Deathgrip eliminates Lash. Unknowingly, the Destructor is now working for the Combine, as he seeks out Big Mike Brand, head of the Syndicate.
The Destructor, as Jay Hunter, heads for New Mexico, home of Big Mike Brand. By saving Mike's daughter, Angela, he quickly becomesdaughter a favorite of the Syndicate Boss. Jay soon discovers, that Big Mike, a shell of his former self after suffering a devastating stroke, is almost ready to turn over massive amounts of evidence to the authorities in a bid to go straight.
Jay realizes that he has been set up by Lash and the Combine. This allows Deathgrip to take matters into his own hands. He kidnaps Big Mike's , Angela and holds her hostage at an auto salvage yard.
The Destructor learns of Angela's whereabouts and heads for the salvage yard. A savage battle ensues between The Destructor and Deathgrip, who nearly kills him with his electrified metal glove. The metal glove proves to be Deathgrip's undoing as it becomes attached to a large magnet being hovered by a crane. Deathgrip is crushed as the Destructor takes Angela to safety.

The Destructor #3  "The Huntress has Won! She's Defeated the Destructor!"
"In the Hands of the Huntress"
The Combine wants the Destructor dead. Dr. Shroud has chosen the individual to kill him, The Huntress.
The Destructor returns to the auto salvage yard, site of his battle with Deathgrip. Seeking answers, he is subdued by gas and captured by the Huntress and her assistant, Lobo.
The Combine has gathered members of the Syndicate from around the country to witness the Huntress track and kill the Destructor. The Huntress and her two cougars begin their assault on him. He is barely able to hold off the two cats, yet when he does, he is savagely attacked by the Huntress and her laser lash.
Near death with the laser lash around his throat, the Destructor crawls toward the force field surrounding the combat area. When the laser lash strikes the force field, it causes an electrical backlash, which causes the Huntress to be thrown off a nearby cliff to her death. The Destructor then makes his escape by evading both Syndicate members and the Combine.

The Destructor #4  "Kill the Surface Dweller--Kill Him Now!"
"Dooms Day -- Minus One"
Deep in the caverns of New Mexico, the Destructor encounters two paid assassins hired by the Combine. Their mission - to kill the Destructor.
After making quick work of the first assassin, he finds himself being aided by the Outcasts (The Eye, Siren and Kronos) who subdue the last assassin. He is then captured by the Outcasts and taken to the Secret Citadel, a city deep within the caverns of New Mexico.
Upon awakening, the Destructor learns the origin of the Secret Citadel. The Citadel was built by scientists who lived in fear of nuclear devastation. The entire project, however, was funded by Abraham E. Caldwell III, whom the scientists deemed evil incarnate. Caldwell insisted that a small nuclear power plant be built, in order to supply energy for the Citadel. The plant was built, over the objections of the scientists.
The power plant was not without it's faults however. Leaking radioactivity, all 54 children born during the first year were abnormal. When the financier, Caldwell, returned for a progress report, he was murdered by a enraged group of scientists. With his death, the Citadel's existence had became a secret. As time passed, the scientists died or became ill, leaving the mutated children in control.
As this is being explained to Jay Hunter, a nuclear explosion some 10 miles away bathes the Secret Citadel in beta and gamma radiation. The radiation effects the chemicals in Jay's bloodstream, the same chemicals that made him the Destructor, as bolts of energy explode from his hands. He collapses, and the Outcasts see this as an opportunity to use the Destructor to meet their own ends. Upon awakening, Kronos sends him to face the U.S. Army and halt the nuclear testing.

Written by Gerry Conway.

Steve Ditko provided artwork on a couple other Atlas titles, Tiger-Man #2 & #3 and Morlock 2001 #3. Bernie (Frankenstein) Wrightson inked Ditko in the Morlock 2001 comic book. Too bad these comics have not been reprinted. They were great stuff!

Live Large My Friends!

Thank You!
Fan art of Altas superheroes!


  1. Destructor was pretty interesting for the first two issues when he was taking on crime lords. Then can the abrupt shift in powers and tone, much like what happened across the board at Atlas with issue 3 (for comics that even lasted three issues). After he got zap-blast powers and was hanging out with mutants underground, I lost interest. Tiger-Man is another comic that was pretty interesting until the sudden change in tone. Such a shame as Atlas was pursuing an interesting anti-hero theme in many of its super hero comics.

  2. I have some destructer comics and atlas comics they were very good.