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Kevin Marlow (Earth-616)

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Preface

The Destroyer has appeared in Marvel publications spanning 70 years. Below is a brief history. For his complete history see the Unabridged history of Kevin Marlow.

World War II

Marlow was an American journalist who'd gone inside Nazi Germany to investigate the horrors of that regime and report back to his States-side newspaper. Unfortunately, Marlow was a better reporter than investigative journalist (or, to put it less politely, spy), and he was caught snooping by the Germans and thrown into a concentration camp. In the camp Marlow meets fellow prisoner Professor Eric Schmitt, a German scientist who'd refused to cooperate with the Nazis and was imprisoned for his troubles. Before dying, Schmitt gave Marlow a formula he had created himself: a version of the Super-Soldier Serum which would later empower Captain America. The Serum worked on Marlow, giving him the same speed, strength, endurance and prime human potential which Steve Rogers would later use as Captain America.

The newly empowered Marlow broke out of the camp, avenged Schmitt's death, and went on a rampage behind enemy lines, working as the costumed Destroyer. On the costume he put a skull logo to scare his enemies. He ranged across Europe and even Japan, although he mostly worked in Germany. At times he was aided by the Allied agent Florence von Banger. Most of his enemies were Nazi agents and spies and villains such as Scar, Herr Sin & Von Maus. When the war ended and the Golden Age drew to a close, the Destroyer disappeared.

Modern Era

Marlow continued with his Destroyer persona after the war, acting as a government operative. He acquired quite a rogues gallery of enemies over the subsequent decades. When he was told that he didn't have much longer to live, Marlow decided to kill off anyone who he thought could pose a threat after he was gone. As a result, he killed his brother, Richard Marlow[1], in addition to several other of his foes. In particular, he wanted to find Scar, his arch-nemesis who knew his secret identity and who robbed his wife of her right arm during their last encounter years before. When the villain learned that Marlow was looking for him, he decided to come out of retirement in an attempt to kill his old foe. To achieve this, he kidnapped Marlow's daughter Felecia, and destroyed her house in an attempt to lure the Destroyer into a trap.[2] The Destroyer, along with Felecia's husband and Marlow's former partner who came out of retirement as Turret, tracked Scar to an abandoned tire factory. There they faced the villain, who had gathered several of the Destroyer's other remaining foes, including Bruiser, Crocodile and the Organite. Scar slit Felecia's wrists, but Turret was able to rescue her in time to save her life. Marlow, meanwhile, killed Bruiser and Crocodile before ripping off Scar's arm and attempting to feed it to him in revenge for what he had done to his wife. He then proceeded to beat Scar's head into a fine pulp before Turret was able to pull him off.[3]

Kevin Marlow (Earth-616) from Destroyer Vol 3 4 0001

Kevin Marlow in the modern era

Later, while recovering in hospital, Marlow learned the location of terrorist organization Horde's central headquarters. Eager to cross another enemy off of his list, he led an assault team of soldiers against them. He was not fully healed from his wounds, however, and quickly found himself in trouble. Luckily, Turret followed the assault team and saved Marlow's life. Turret then killed Horde's ultimate leader, Krakoom.[4]

A few days later, while lying in bed with his wife, Marlow had a third heart attack and appeared to momentarily die. His soul traveled to a sort of limbo where he was approached by three grim reapers attempting to make him go to the light. The Destroyer savagely beat the three beings and woke up while being attended to by a team of paramedics. His doctor told him that his heart actually seemed to be repairing itself somehow, giving him a second chance at life. While again recovering in hospital, Marlow learned that his old foe Techtronica had uploaded her consciousness into the minds of several computer technicians at the Pentagon. The government, however, wasn't interested in having his help this time though, as Turret proved himself to be faster and stronger than his old mentor, adopting the mantle of Destroyer for himself. Initially worried about his daughter having to cope with Darius acting as a superhero, he was later happy to pass on the legacy to him, calling him his greatest achievement. It is presumed that he then decided to retire and live out the rest of his days peacefully alongside his family.[5]

Powers

Marlow possessed various superhuman attributes as a result of ingesting a derivative of the Super-Soldier Serum that would be used on Steve Rogers.

Superhuman Strength: The Super-Soldier Serum derivative augmented Marlow's musculature, granting him a slight degree of superhuman strength. At his peak, Marlow possessed sufficient strength to lift approximately 1,000 lbs.

Peak Human Speed: The Super-Soldier Serum derivative also increased Marlow's running speed to the peak of human efficiency. Marlow could sprint at speeds of up to 30 miles per hour.

Superhuman Stamina: Marlow's augmented and superior musculature produced less fatigue toxins during physical activity than the musculature of a normal human. At his peak, he could exert himself at peak capacity for up to three hours before the build up of fatigue toxins in his blood began to impair him.

Superhuman Durability: Marlow's bodily tissues were augmented by the Super-Soldier Serum derivative to the point that they were tougher and more resistant to some kinds of injury than the bodily tissues of an ordinary human. While far from invulnerable, Marlow could withstand powerful impact forces. He could withstand impacts with little to no injury to himself, such as being struck by a superhumanly strong opponent or falling from several stories, that would severely injure or kill a normal human.

Superhuman Agility: The Super-Soldier Serum derivative augmented Marlow's natural agility, balance and bodily coordination to levels that are beyond the natural physical limits of the finest human athlete. Marlow's agility was often likened with that of a tiger.

Superhuman Reflexes: Marlow's reflexes were similarly enhanced and were superior to those of the finest human athlete.

Slowed Aging Process: Marlow also appears to possess some sort of a slowed aging process, allowing him to remain a skilled combatant well into his 80's.


Abilities

Marlow was a master of disguise, an accomplished journalist and skilled detective. He was also a formidable armed and unarmed combatant with considerable experience in the use of conventional firearms.




Weapons

Some guns, although he doesn't like them and uses any weapon available such as axes, chains, blades and sticks.

  • Little is known about the full nature of the Super-Soldier Serum derivative Marlow ingested.
  • Marlow should not be confused with either of the other World War II heroes to take up the Destroyer guise, Brian Falsworth (also known as Union Jack) or Roger Aubrey (also known as Dyna-Mite).

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