published by Marvel Comics
and created by Jack Kirby
The Absorbing Man
first appeared in Journey into Mystery #114
Carl "Crusher' Creel was a small time criminal who worked with
a group of extortionists until his capture and conviction of crimes
related to the group. It was in prison that Creel was found by
Loki, the Norse god of mischief and half-brother to the
hero Thor. Using a special formula concocted with special
Asgardian herbs, Loki granted Creel the ability to absorb the
properties of anything that he touched often times taking on the
physical characteristics of the substance. The ability was also
passed on to the ball and chain that were attached to Creel at the
time of the transformation, which he now uses as a weapon.
Breaking free of the prison, Creel who was now called the Absorbing
Man clashed with Thor and was eventually defeated. Over the years,
Creel has also fought such heroes as the Incredible Hulk, the
Avengers and the disco mutant Dazzler.
Creel is most often defeated by a misuse of his power rather than
by the heroes he faces. He as done such things as turn into glass
while plummeting from a huge height, shattering in a million pieces
that eventually had to be reformed. He as turned into water to
escape his foes, only to find that he cannot hold his form together.
From all of these instances, Creel has eventually recovered, though
it has taken a toll on him at times.
Apart from physical substances, Creel also has the ability to absorb
the characteristics of energy types (fire, light, nuclear, etc.) or
mystical items like Thor's hammer. The Absorbing Man also possesses
the ability to absorb things like the Hulk's abilities or Thor's
The Absorbing Man is one of villains chosen by the Beyonder to fight
on the distant Battle World vs. many of Marvel's most popular
heroes during the Secret Wars. During this time, he met Titania, a powerfully strong
woman, who was a pawn of Doctor Doom. They established a
relationship and were with each other for a number of years, even
attempting to go straight for at time.