Glynis and Ilya Zarkov were a married couple who worked as stage magicians known as Glamor and Illusion. They performed at the Magic Mansion in New York City, a club which they owned and where other stage magicians performed as well. Unlike other stage magicians; however, Glamor and Illusion had actual superhuman powers which they used to perform their amazing feats. Due to the fear and prejudice much of the populace felt towards people with abilities, Glamor and Illusion pretended to be ordinary human beings who accomplished their "magic" feats through the usual trickery employed by stage magicians.
The Zarkovs lived in the quiet town of Leonia, New Jersey, only a short drive from New York City. When the android Vision and the mutant Scarlet Witch first moved to Leonia, bigoted local residents burned down their house.
Determined not to be intimidated, the Vision and Scarlet Witch bought another house in the area. The Zarkovs feared that if the bigots tried to drive the Vision and the Scarlet Witch away again, then the Zarkovs themselves might become the bigots' next target. Hence, the Zarkovs decided to protect the Vision and Scarlet Witch in order to protect themselves. Spying on a group of local bigots, the Zarkovs learned that they planned to firebomb the Vision and Scarlet Witch's new house. The Zarkovs then used their powers to thwart the plan. The Zarkovs afterwards became friends with the Vision and Scarlet Witch.
Illusion had the superhuman ability to control mentally the molecules of anything he touched for one minute after he touched it. The origin of his power has not been revealed. He could use his power to levitate whatever he had touched or to rearrange its molecules.
His powers were so great that just by touching a minuscule amount of the ashes of a burned long before, he could draw together all the rest of the ashes of the book that the wind had scattered over the town he was in, restore the book to virtually its original condition before it was burned. Apparently he couldn't control his own body's molecules by touching his body.
Illusion possessed the normal human strength of a man of his age, height, and build who engaged in moderate regular exercise.
- 9 Appearances of Ilya Zarkov (Earth-616)
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