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Kyle Richmond (Earth-616)

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Quote1 Here's a filet of fist, served up by -- Nighthawk! Quote2
-- Nighthawk src

Early life

Kyle Richmond was the son of wealthy businessman Arthur Richmond (owner of Richmond Enterprises) and his wife Penelope. While his father was mostly absent on business trips, his mother died in a tragic accident, leaving him in the care of a governess. Upon reaching schooling age, Kyle was placed in a private school. His first day, he began to cry, prompting his classmates to laugh at him which broke out in a fight. Kyle grew up a troubled child, constantly getting in trouble in school, and growing arrogant due to his family's wealth. One year as an adolescent, he struck his principal, knowing that his father's money and influence would prevent any repercussion for his actions[1].

As a young adult, Kyle continued his education at Grayburn College, beginning a relationship with Mindy Williams. Kyle's reckless nature led to a night of drunk driving that ended in a vehicular accident. Kyle's father used his money and influence to cover up the accident, sending the now-crippled Mindy away and leaving Kyle to believe that she had died in the accident. Ultimately the incident got him kicked out of school[1][2]. Kyle attempted to join the military, but was rejected due to a heart murmur, and became obsessed with training his body and curing the murmur. During this period, Kyle's father died in a plane crash leaving him the sole heir to the Richmond fortune. He also briefly dated fashion model Trixie Starr, however they soon grew apart[1].

Squadron Sinister

Kyle became a pawn of the Elder of the Universe known as Grandmaster. After playing a contest with Earth-712's Scarlet Centurion, pitting the worlds Squadron Supreme and Institute of Evil against each other,
Nighthawk Original

Richmond's original Nighthawk costume as a member of the Squadron Sinister

the Grandmaster was inspired to create his own version of the Squadron Supreme on Earth-616, he noted that Earth-712's version of Kyle Richmond was the heroic Nighthawk, and orchestrated events to recreate a Nighthawk with the Earth-616 Richmond. Using the Wellspring of Universal Power, the Grandmaster inspired Kyle to create a special serum that increased his natural abilities three fold in the night. Using his wealth, he built devices and vehicles and created his identity of Nighthawk[3][4].

As Nighthawk, Kyle was recruited by the Grandmaster to be a member of his Squadron Sinister, super-villains based on on Earth-712's Squadron Supreme. Grandmaster then challenged the Scarlet Centurion's counterpart Kang to a contest, pitting the Avengers against the Squadron Sinister[5]. Nighthawk was sent to New York City to attempt to destroy the Statue of Liberty, and pitted against Captain America. Nighthawk and his fellow Squadron Sinister members were defeated by the Avengers[3], and ultimately the Grandmaster won his contest against Kang[6].

The Grandmaster left the Squadron to their own devices, and for a brief time Nighthawk acted solo. Needing thrills, he challenged Daredevil to capture him, committing spectacular crimes and seeing if the Man Without Fear could stop him. Daredevil ultimately foiled his plans, although Nighthawk escaped[4]. Shortly thereafter, while purchasing replacement parts for his Hawk-Plane, Nighthawk committed an act of hit-and-run, leaving his victim to die[7].

Nighthawk was reunited with his fellow Squadron members when they were approached by the alien known as Nebulon, who had come to purchase Earth for his people. Part of this bargain involved melting the Earth's ice caps in order to flood the planet and make it more inhabitable for Nebulon's race. Learning of this plot, and finding it deplorable, Nighthawk sought the aid of the Avengers to try and stop his fellow Squadron members from committing this act. With the Avengers unavailable, Nighthawk learned of the Defenders and sought that group's aid instead. After an initial clash with the Defenders, they agreed to join him in stopping Nebulon. However, before Nighthawk could take them to the ice cap, he was teleported away by Nebulon[8]. When the Defenders came to rescue Nighthawk, they clashed with Nebulon and found themselves launched into space. However, Nighthawk and the Defenders returned to Earth, and Nighthawk sacrificed his life to stop Nebulon by turning the alien's laser cannon on the monster, shunting him and the other Squadron Sinister members to another dimension and mortally wounding Kyle. The Defenders gave up portions of their life force to restore Kyle to life, and he asked to join the team[9]. He joint, and became one of the Defenders.

The Defenders

Upon joining the Defenders, Kyle abandoned his hawk inspired vehicles and redesigned his costume with new weapons and flight capabilities. In his first mission with the Defenders he aided the group and Professor X in stopping Magneto, the Brotherhood of Evil Mutants and Magneto's newest creation, Alpha the Ultimate Mutant, from terrorizing the world[10]. Next, he aided the Defenders and Son of Satan in saving his teammate, the Hulk, from Asmodeus[11].

In an attempt to make the team more close knit, he refashioned his riding institute into a base for the Defenders, but found, to his frustration, that the group was too loosely based to have need of a true headquarters. He next went into action with the Defenders and Power Man to stop the Wrecking Crew, who were destroying Richmond Enterprise buildings in the hopes of reclaiming a gamma bomb developed by their member Thunderball[12]. He also aided the Defenders and the Thing in preventing the Celestial Harmonica from being exploited by cult leader Van Nyborg to reshape the universe[13]. During his time for the Defenders, Kyle began to develop feelings for fellow Defender teammate, Valkyrie, until he learned that her alter ego of Barbara Norriss was married, causing him to storm out. He was soon reunited with Trish Starr and revealed his secret identity to her. Kyle went into action as Nighthawk in an attempt to stop the Headmen from robbing diamonds during a madness inducing rainstorm of their creation, only to fail in stopping Gorilla Man[14].

Nighthawk once more became a pawn of the Grandmaster when he pitted the Defenders against champions selected by the robotic Prime Mover, a battle which the Defenders ultimately won thanks to some trickery on the part of their ally Daredevil[15]. By this time Richmond's relationship with Trish became more serious. Things were cut tragically short, however, when a car-bomb planted by her uncle, Egghead, exploded in Richmond's vehicle with both of them inside. Although both Kyle and Trish survived, Patricia needed to get her arm amputated. After a brief clash with the Squadron Sinister (whom the Defenders mistakenly believed planted the bomb until told otherwise by Yellowjacket), Trish left Kyle, not wanting him to stay with her out of pity[16].

After aiding Spider-Man in stopping the Meteor Man from stealing meteors to increase his powers[17], Kyle aided his fellow Defenders in stopping the Sons of the Serpent from burning down tenement slums in New York[18]. In battling the racist group, the Defenders revealed their leader to be J.C. Pennysworth the man Kyle entrusted to run Richmond Enterprises. Horrified that his most trusted man would use his companies money to fund a racist organization, Kyle briefly departed from the Defenders[19].

Kyle later returned to the Defenders to help them aid Earth-691's Guardians of the Galaxy in stopping the Badoon mutated creature Eelar[20]. He traveled with the group to Earth-691's 31st Century to help the Guardians overthrow the Badoon who had taken over the Earth in that era. After succeeding in their mission the Defenders returned to their own native time[21].

Investigating Pennyworth's investments, Nighthawk learned of a movie studio purchased using Richmond Enterprise money, and that it was a front for the Maggia. Captured by their agent Tapping Tommy and held for ransom, Kyle was saved by his fellow Defenders[22]. Later he and the Defenders helped Howard the Duck and Beverly Switzler defeat the Band of the Bland[23].

Head Games

Nighthawk was targeted by the Headmen, who easily captured him by bombarding his mind with images of Trish. They then surgically removed his brain and replaced it with the mind of Chondu the Mystic[24]. While a disembodied brain, Kyle was forced to relive the more painful moments of his life and riddled with the guilt over his many failures. During this time, the Defenders detected Chondu's presence in their ranks and switched his mind with that of their ally Jack Norris, who saved Kyle's brain only to be captured by Nebulon's minions the Ludberdites[25]. Ultimately, the Defenders defeated the Headmen and Nebulon, rescued Jack and Kyle and restored everyone's minds to their proper bodies[26].

Dr. Strange arranged to have Russian doctor Tania Belinskaya (secretly the Red Guardian) restore Kyle's brain[27]. Kyle was then kidnapped and ransomed again, this time by Plant Man, and rescued by his Defenders allies once more[28].

Nighthawk and the Defenders became caught up in a battle with the Celestial Mind Control Movement, a world wide cult that was slowly taking over the world, leading to clashes once more with the Headmen and Nebulon, as well as Nebulon's mind-controlled slaves Porcupine and Eel[29][30]. Also during this period, Nighthawk helped Jack Norriss search for the missing Valkyrie[31], learned that she was arrested and hired Matt Murdock to have her freed from jail[32].

Defenders Mainstay

Nighthawk remained a mainstay with the Defenders for a time, battling many foes both conventional and mystic. He aided the Defenders in saving Trish from the extra-dimensional sorceress Shazana[33]; stopping Defenders member the Hulk from a rampage[34]; battled the Emissaries of Evil[35]; met the rock group Kiss[36]; battled the Star of Capistan possessing Dr. Strange[37].

With Dr. Strange leaving the team, Nighthawk took over leadership and relocated them to his riding academy[38]. They soon needed to rescue Jack Norriss from Scorpio and his LMD Zodiac team with the aid of Moon Knight. The group rescued Jack and defeated the LMD Zodiac, however, Scorpio committed suicide to avoid capture[39].

Nighthawk fought the Ringer[40], stopped a rampage between the Hulk and the Sub-Mariner[41], and aided the Wasp and Yellowjacket in stopping Porcupine[42].

Nighthawk traveled with the Defenders to Russia to investigate the source of radiation from the country that was affecting Atlantis. This led to a clash with the Presence, the Defenders stopped him at the expense of their comrade Red Guardian becoming a radiation mutated being. Kyle and fellow Defender Hellcat were exposed to excessive amounts of radiation and required decontamination[43]. Upon their release, they aided Ms. Marvel in stopping AIM[44]. Kyle was briefly called to England for a Richmond Enterprises meeting that ultimately led to him and the Thing battling an ancient creature dug up from the Himalayans dubbed the Shambler[45].

Kyle returned to the States and upgraded his equipment[46] before accompanying the Defenders on a number of missions in which their new ally Dollar Bill, a film student, followed along with them. They battled the demon Balthazar and his Cult of the Harvesters of Eyes[47]. When Death-Stalker targeted a Richmond Enterprise funded star-drive in London, Nighthawk enlisted the aid of his fellow Defender Dr. Strange to help defeat the villain and foil his plot[48]. With the Defenders, Nighthawk attempted to aid Dollar Bill in stopping the vigilante known as Lunatik, however they failed to capture him[49].

The Defenders existence was outed to the public thanks to a documentary made by Dollar Bill, much to the annoyance of Kyle. The documentary caused numerous problems, namely it attracted a group of super-heroes wishing to join the group finding their lax membership policy appealing, and encouraged a group of villains to pose as Defenders to commit crimes[50]. Nighthawk led a squad of the so called Defenders for a Day against the evil "Defenders". Nighthawk's group constantly ran afoul of a young trouble maker before being delivered a humiliating defeat at the hands of a group of "Defenders" trying to rob a bank. At the end of the day, the villains were defeated however all the Defenders for a Day quit [51].

With Valkyrie becoming more unstable, Nighthawk vowed to try and get her professional help, however she fled before he could do so[52]. Nighthawk and Hellcat got into a car accident and had their souls taken to Valhalla where they learned that they were pawns in an attempt by Hela to take over Valhalla. With the help of Valkyrie, they defeated Hela and her minion Barbara Norriss before being returned to Earth and restored to life[53]. Nighthawk battled Yandroth[54], and was part of another Avengers/Defenders team-up that was be marred when the Scarlet Witch was attacked by the new super-hero known as Jewel who was at that time controlled by Purple Man[55]. Later he assisted his fellow Defenders against Anything Man who was manipulated by the Omegatron[56].

Nighthawk then joined the Defenders in trying to stop the Lunatik, bringing them to the realm of Tunnelworld where they fought against the Unnamable, a powerful force that threatened Tunnelworld and the entire universe. Nighthawk and his fellow Defenders ended the Unnamable's menace by making everyone forget the being's name except the Hulk, who had that part of his brain atrophied by Dr. Strange[57].

Legal Troubles

Upon his return to Earth, Kyle received a call from his lawyers. As it turned out, the Justice Department had begun investigating Kyle Richmond and Richmond Enterprises for tax evasion, fraud, and stock market manipulation. His lawyers warned him that he was not legally be allowed to operate as Nighthawk or would have to face legal action, forcing him to quit the Defenders[58]. This did not stop Kyle from becoming Nighthawk again. He went into action to stop the Foolkiller, at the expense of his riding academy being burned to the ground[59]. This landed him the risk of jail time if he was to go into action again[60], frustrating Kyle further especially when new modifications were made to his armor[61]. Kyle still disobeyed government orders to aid a number of super-heroes in a failed attempt to take down a force-field put up around the city[62].

Shortly thereafter Kyle disobeyed the law again, becoming Nighthawk to aid the Wasp in rescuing Valkyrie, Hellcat and Yellowjacket who had been captured by the Mandrill and Mutant Force[63]. He aided the military in stopping Mandrill and his army, and freed his friends[64]. However, this activity as Nighthawk had Kyle arrested by the FBI[65]. Kyle had to deal with the legal red tape of trying to sort out his legal affairs, while his fellow Defenders went off on other missions. When Kyle was asked by Black Panther to help recover stolen Wakandan technology, and later asked to help track down the Hulk, Kyle had to turn both down as Nighthawk, but provided his resources with Richmond Enterprises to help fund missions and repair the Defenders' aircraft[66].

With the help of lawyer Matt Murdock, Kyle had the ban on his super-heroics lifted. Going out into action again Kyle broke up a hostage situation. However, his joy was marred by news that the Justice Department was still going ahead with criminal charges against him for tax evasion, and other corporate crimes[67]. With his assets now frozen, Nighthawk had to deal with continued legal battle, but took time away to attend the funeral of Dorothy Walker, Hellcat's mother[68]. His initial court trail ended up being marred due to interference by the Mandrill, whom the Defenders defeated with the aid of Daredevil[69].

Later while answering to the press about his current legal troubles, Kyle was haunted by his past when attacked by a robot modeled after his ex-girlfriend Mindy Williams. He was aided by Spider-Man, who accompanied Kyle to the now abandoned Greyburn College where they faced off against robots made by Mindy herself who was revealed to be alive and well. Foiling her revenge scheme, Kyle had her get psychiatric help. On the way home, Kyle was demoralized as a hero but his opinion changed after saving a young crippled girl when the wall of a derelict building threatened to topple on her[2].

Six-Fingered Hand Conspiracy

Kyle and the Defenders were caught in a conspiracy to bring Hell on Earth. It all started when fragments of Eternity sent out to live human lives refused to return to the celestial embodiment of everything, threatening to destroy all existence. Kyle was the key to the victory, convincing the fragments of Eternity that destroying the universe would also kill their loved ones[70]. Following this battle, Nighthawk suddenly collapsed. Dr. Strange soon found that some force had severed the life force that saved his life many months earlier, and worked quickly to save Kyle's life. Strange succeeded, however Kyle found himself paralyzed[71].

When the Defenders faced the Six-Fingered Hand, a group of lesser demons behind the conspiracy to bring Hell on Earth, Kyle found that at night, the serum that originally enhanced his natural abilities granted him mobility at night[71]. However, the effect wore off at dawn. Despite this limitation Kyle went into action as Nighthawk to help his fellow Defenders and Dracula end a vampire uprising orchestrated by the demon Puishannt[72].

With his legal troubles still continuing, Kyle paid a visit to his lawyers to have them delay the court proceedings, and abruptly left when Rosemblaum showed him pity. When the Defenders headed off to Detroit to follow another lead on the Six-Fingered Hand, Kyle stayed behind[73]. When the Defenders followed Devil-Slayer to Israel to investigate a so called messiah named David Kessler, they brought Kyle with them. Kessler restored Kyle's mobility, however the Defenders revealed that Kessler was possessed by the demon known as Hypporki. When a horrified Kessler committed suicide, Hyppokri was defeated, however, Kyle once more lost his mobility[74].

Following the battle with Hyppokri, Kyle decided to quit the Defenders hiring a chauffeur and nurse Luann Bloom to look after him[75]. Kyle bonded quickly with Luann, however he was captured by Hellcat, who was being manipulated by the Six-Fingered Hand[76]. Taken to Arizona, Kyle was horrified to be transported to Hell where he found that the whole conspiracy was being masterminded by none other than Satan himself[77]. With his mobility restored, Nighthawk joined the Defenders in battling the various Hell-Lords. Kyle, Gargoyle and Devil-Slayer were forced to fight Thog and an army of dead soldiers from wars around the world. Kyle won their battle by convincing the soldiers to stand down, however Thog cheated and had them bombed. Kyle and the other Defenders survived and defeated Satan and the other Hell-Lords when Satan proved unable to kill his son Daimon Hellstrom. While the Defenders had their victory, it came at cheating to give Daimon increased power and Satan took his son back to Hell with him, leaving the Defenders to wonder if this was not his intention all along[78]. Following their victory against the Six-Fingered Hand, Kyle quit the Defenders[79].


After an unsuccessful attempt by Gargoyle and Clea to heal Kyle, Kyle left for Massachusetts, and paid a visit to Mindy Williams. Kyle learned to his surprise that Mindy had developed mental powers. Finding the facility suspicious and being warned by Clea that the power that crippled him originated from there, Kyle investigated and found out it was apparently run by the Central Intelligence Bureau of the government. The CIB intended to create an army of soldiers with mental powers, Mindy being one of them. When Kyle refused to go along with this, their administrator August Masters unleashed Mindy's full power on Kyle. Mindy created psychic rats to attack him, however she turned on her masters when Clea reminded her how much she felt for Kyle, destroying their equipment and killing some of their techs. Kyle vowed to use his money and the media to take down the CIB, but this did not work out as the organization used their influence to cover up the story, much to Kyle's anger and frustration[80].

After attending the funeral of Captain Marvel[81], Kyle was targeted by Dr. Strange foe Cyrus Black who transformed children into the likeness of Hulk, Captain America and Spider-Man, however Kyle defeated Black and turned him over to Dr. Strange.[82]

Kyle found that his legal troubles were sorted out and he only had to pay a fine of $767,000.00 in outstanding taxes. He learned that this was due to the manipulations of August Masters who attempted to gain Kyle's favor, however still furious over their last encounter, Kyle vowed to take Masters and his operation down[83]. Kyle became a pawn of the Grandmaster yet again as he was one of the heroes selected to compete in the Contest of Champions between the Grandmaster and Death, however he did not combat in the tournament[84].

Returned to Earth after the Contest, Kyle purchased a new brownstone for the Defenders to operate out of, however he, Hellcat, Gargoyle, and Valkyrie were gassed and captured by Masters[85]. Taken to a mountain base, Kyle learned Masters was not really a member of the CIB, but a secret organization of "super-patriots" who sought to use psychics and telepaths to launch World War III by decimating Russia with a mental attack[86]. Ultimately, the psychics worked through Kyle to free the Defenders and their ally Captain America, and sent them to safety while he detonated the base seemingly killing himself and the psychics[87].

Although no body was found, there was a funeral service for Kyle[88]. The Defenders also tried to learn if Kyle had survived, but their efforts were in vain[89].


Kyle however was not dead at all, but was found in a coma and kept alive, listed in a hospital simply as a John Doe. He was revived from his coma, seemingly by an angel, who granted him with special visions that enabled him to see crimes before they were committed. Returning to his life of heroics, Nighthawk soon found that this supposed blessing was a nightmare in the making: He attacked criminals before they committed a crime, making him a criminal himself and attracting the attention of Daredevil. This led to a clash between the two where Nighthawk in a fury killed Daredevil. He and Daredevil's corpse were transported to Hell where Kyle learned that his "gift" was actually given to him not by an angel, but by Mephisto[90].

Trapped in Hell, Kyle fought his way out, carrying the corpse of Daredevil along the way and found a means to restore Daredevil back to life via demonic flames[91]. Ultimately, they escaped from Hell after Mephisto attempted to trick the two heroes into believing that they were in Heaven, however Daredevil saw through this illusion and they returned to Earth[92].

Nighthawk then began amassing occult knowledge, befriending the mystic known as Papa Hagg who removed the mystic sight for Kyle[93].

Defenders Reunited

Kyle was reunited with his fellow Defenders when they weree called to stop their old foe Yandroth, who in his defeat cursed the original Defenders, a curse that would have repercussion for the group much later[94].

Along with the reunited Defenders, Kyle faced threats such as the Olympian death God Pluto[95], and the Headmen[96]. During this period Yandroth's curse became apparent, whenever there was a major threat in the world the original Defenders were teleported away to face it. The first time this happened, Nighthawk and the other Defenders tracked down Dr. Strange and the others to Sky-Island, leading to a fight with the Bi-Beast and the Bloodraven Cult, to prevent them from detonating a powerful bomb[97]. After saving Atlantis from an attack by Attuma and his group Deep Six, the original Defenders were teleported away to fight a Hellseyes, when Kyle and the others caught up, they arrived too late to help[98]. Kyle was among the many heroes to be captured by Graviton and freed by the Thunderbolts[99]. Next, Nighthawk joined the Defenders in battling AIM, foiled the Headmen's attempt to take over the world[100] and finally liberated Atlantis from Attuma's control[101] before attending the funeral of Captain America (who was incorrectly believed to be dead at the time)[102].

The Order

When the Defenders approached the Earth-Mother Gaea to remove Yandroth's curse, which was making the original Defenders more and more irritable, Kyle was horrified when they attacked Gaea after she refused. Kyle found himself and the other Defenders transported to the Himalayan Mountains by Dr. Strange and trapping them there[103].

Trapped in the Himalayas, Kyle almost died of exposure, however Papa Hagg repaired their teleportation ring so that they might escape. Arriving at the home of Valkyrie's host Samantha Parrington, Nighthawk was nursed back to health[104]. Learning that their Defenders allies had formed into an organization bent on taking over the world called the Order, Nighthawk and the remaining Defenders attempted to stop them leading to a clash with the savage astral forms of Dr. Strange, Silver Surfer, Hulk, and the Sub-Mariner[105].

Confronting the Order ended in failure, even with the aid of a female Silver Surfer and the group was banished to Yandroth's home planet of Yann in another dimension. There they learned from Scientist Supreme Christopher Ganyarog that Yandroth was using the Order as pawns to destroy Yann so that he might be resurrected as a god-like being. Nighthawk with the aid of Ganyarog and his Defender allies ultimately broke the curse on the Defenders and defeated Yandroth[106].


When Earth-616 was being forcibly merged with New Earth, Nighthawk was among the many heroes who defended people from both worlds from the ensuing chaos, while the combined efforts of the Avengers and the Justice League of America ended the crisis.[107] Following this clash, Nighthawk was captured along with the Thing and the reformed Constrictor by Arcade. The three heroes worked together to defeat Arcade and free themselves[108].


Nighthawk began to sense his powers growing, unaware that this was due to the Grandmaster's manipulations of the Well Spring of Universal Power. His accounts department was soon robbed by former Squadron Sinister member Speed Demon. Tracking him down, he got into a clash with the Thunderbolts, who now included Speed Demon. After everything was sorted out the group was attacked by Hyperion and Dr. Spectrum who had come to gather Nighthawk and Speed Demon for a Squadron Sinister reunion[109]. During the ensuing battle between the Squadron Sinister and the Thunderbolts, Nighthawk and Speed Demon were captured and learned that the group was attempting to force change upon the world. Not willing to participate, Nighthawk refused just as the Thunderbolts attacked, leading to the Squadron fleeing with Speed Demon at their side. Nighthawk was willing to settle with the Thunderbolts if his stolen money was returned and Songbird offered him membership in the Thunderbolts[110]. Nighthawk was then briefly plucked out of time to be a witness in She-Hulk's time infraction trial with the Time Variance Authority[111].

Returned to his own time, Nighthawk offered the Thunderbolts a new headquarters[112], and during a training session Kyle and the rest of the Thunderbolts were given glimpses of the future when their teammate Photon's powers flared out of control revealing him as a threat to the future. Before they could decide on what to do about the problem, they were attacked by Moonstone[113]. The group was shunted into the Microverse where they fought for their lives and debated on what to do with Photon. Vehemently against killing Photon, Nighthawk was knocked out by fellow teammate Joystick. When they were rescued by Baron Zemo, Nighthawk continued to fight their decision to eliminate Photon, however he ultimately failed as Zemo succeeded in killing Photon and joining the Thunderbolts[114].

Unable to trust Zemo as leader of the Thunderbolts he questioned his teammates on how trustworthy Zemo was[115], when Songbird violently rejected his questioning. Nighthawk decided to defect to the Squadron Sinister instead. The Grandmaster dispatched them to locate the conduit points to Wellspring of Universal Power[116].

Civil War

Nighthawk took time away to join in one of Thing's roaming poker games[117], and meet with various super-heroes to discuss the implementation of the Superhuman Registration Act[118][119]. Resuming his quest with the Squadron Sinister to locate the Wellspring conduits, led to clashes with the Thunderbolts across the world, ultimately ending with Baron Zemo killing the Grandmaster and the Squadron Sinister disbanding[120].

Nighthawk decided to join Captain America's Secret Avengers and battle against the Pro-SHRA forces until the death of Goliath, prompting Nighthawk to defect from Cap's group and register[106]. Nighthawk joined Iron Man on an attack at the Wakandan embassy in New York against anti-registration heroes, being defeated in combat by Storm and the Falcon[121].

The Initiative

Following the end of the super-hero Civil War, Nighthawk joined the 50-State Initiative, entering training at Camp Hammond[122]. After his initial training[123], he clashed along his fellow trainees with the terrorist organization Hydra[124]. Kyle was ultimately tapped to join Henry Gyrich's Shadow Initiative and tried to convince Constrictor into joining[125]. He was also present in the battle against the insane KIA, getting knocked out in the battle[126]. Following KIA's defeat[127], Nighthawk gave out Purple Hearts to all those Initiative members that were injured in battle, with the exception of the former Nazi Wernher von Blitzschlag.[128]

The Last Defenders

With the deployment of Initiative created teams, Nighthawk tapped a number of heroes to start a new team of Defenders, seeking to recruit some of his old teammates and convincing Gargoyle after battling the Brothers Grimm. When proposing the idea to Iron Man, it was refused as Stark had already tapped a new team for him including Blazing Skull, Colossus, and She-Hulk who Nighthawk convinced to join after she beat the Scorcher in battle. They were the Initiative team in charge with policing New Jersey, and clashed with with the Sons of the Serpent. Their lack of team work battling the Serpents and the Aztec demon they summoned caused plenty of collateral damage and injured S.H.I.E.L.D. agents.[108]

Kyle also took on U-Man and the Brand Corporation, growing increasingly frustrated with this new Initiative version of the Defenders[95]. He was caught in a time travel incident wherein he learned that the man he hit-and-ran years ago was Yandroth and that he had set in motion the events that led to the first teaming of the original Defenders to stop Yandroth's Omegatron. With the aid of a future incarnation of the Defenders, Nighthawk helped in defeating the Omegatron and its constructs of the Squadron Sinister before returning to his own time. With the Initiative Defenders disbanded, Nighthawk sought to recruit a new team that would operate outside of the Initiative[106].


Fearsome Four

Fear Itself Fearsome Four Vol 1 1 Textless

Fearsome Four

During the Fear Itself event, Nighthawk formed a team called the Fearsome Four with She-Hulk, Frankenstein's Monster and Howard the Duck to stop the Man-Thing who found himself driven to an uncontrollable rage, caused by the immense levels of fear generated by the Serpent's hammer-wielders across the world.[129] They faced various alternate universe heroes and the Psycho-Man, brought to Earth by the Man-Thing's connection to the Nexus of All Realities.[130][131] The four were eventually able to confront their own fears and calm the Man-Thing, bringing an end to his rampage and saving the world, before going their separate ways.[132]

Impersonation by a Skrull

A Skrull impersonating Kyle was killed by an alternate universe's Nighthawk.[133] It is unrevealed if Kyle was (or is currently) abducted in order for the Skrull to perpetrate the impersonation.


Due to the alchemical potion, Nighthawk possesses various superhuman physical attributes. Due to the unique nature of the potion, all of his superhuman attributes are doubled at night.

Superhuman Strength: During the day, Nighthawk possesses sufficient physical strength to lift about 1 ton. At night, his strength increases to the point of being able to lift roughly 2 tons.

Superhuman Stamina: Nighthawk's musculature produces less fatigue toxins during physical activity than the musculature of a normal human. He can exert himself at peak capacity for at least 2 hours during the day before the build up of fatigue toxins in his blood begins to impair him. At night, physical stamina increases sufficiently to exert himself at peak efficiency for at least 4 hours.

Superhuman Durability: Nighthawk's body is tougher and more resistant to certain kinds of injury than the body of a normal human, though he's far from invulnerable. Kyle's bodily tissues are sufficiently toughened to withstand powerful impact forces. He can withstand impacts, such as falling from several stories and being repeatedly struck by a superhumanly strong opponent, that would severely injure or kill a normal human with little to no injury. At night, his body becomes even more resistant to impact trauma, though he can still be injured by bullets or bladed weapons composed of conventional materials.

Superhuman Agility: Nighthawk's agility, balance, and bodily coordination are enhanced to levels that are beyond the natural physical limits of the finest human athlete. His agility is enhanced to twice his normal level at night.

Superhuman Reflexes: Nighthawk's reflexes are similarly enhanced and are superior to those of the finest human athlete, even more so at night.

Superhuman Senses: Nighthawk's senses of sight and hearing are augmented to superhuman levels of acuity. Nighthawk can see objects at much greater distances, and with perfect clarity, than a normal human is capable of. At night, his visual acuity is doubled so that he retains this same level of clarity. His hearing is similarly enhanced, enabling him to detect sounds at greater distances and sounds ordinary humans can't detect.

Precognitive Visions: For a brief time Nighthawk was gifted with the ability to see visions of the future, these would usually manifest by seeing a crime before it was committed. This power was later removed by Papa Hagg.


Nighthawk is a skilled acrobat and an experienced and capable hand to hand combatant. Over the years, Nighthawk has become somewhat of an expert on occult matters.


Nighthawk uses jet-powered, artificial wings enabling him to fly through the air. Nighthawk can fly up to 120 miles per hour and still be able to breathe, although the jet-pack is capable of propelling him at even greater speeds. He is also capable of climbing to altitudes of 30,000 feet with extreme effort since it becomes very difficult for him to breathe at 24,000 feet. The pack itself has enough fuel to allow him to fly continually for up to 16 hours. The wings themselves are composed of a flexible, yet highly durable plastic/steel polymer that he can use to shield himself from bullets and even explosive grenades. Nighthawks cowl contains a number of instruments built into it including digital instrument displays, a radio transmitter, and special lenses in the eyes which further serve to enhance his already great eyesight.


See Equipment

During his brief career as a costumed criminal, Nighthawk used the Hawk-Plane for transportation. The Hawk-Plane used VTOL jets for propulsion, which allowed for vertical takeoffs and landings. The Hawk-Plane was soon retired in favor of his jet-powered artificial wings.


Nighthawk has been known to wield talons on his gloves composed of Titanium, with a razor sharp edge to them. Coupled with his great strength, the talons are able to cut most conventional materials, including some types of metals.

Discover and Discuss


  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 Defenders #32
  2. 2.0 2.1 Marvel Team-Up #101
  3. 3.0 3.1 Avengers #70
  4. 4.0 4.1 Daredevil #62
  5. Avengers #69
  6. Avengers #71
  7. Last Defenders #5
  8. Defenders #13
  9. Defenders #14
  10. Defenders #15-16
  11. Giant-Size Defenders #2
  12. Defenders #17-19
  13. Defenders #20
  14. Defenders #21
  15. Giant-Size Defenders #3
  16. Giant-Size Defenders #4
  17. Marvel Team-Up #33
  18. Defenders #22
  19. Defenders #23-25
  20. Giant-Size Defenders #5
  21. Defenders #26-29
  22. Defenders #30
  23. Marvel Treasury Edition #12
  24. Defenders #31
  25. Defenders #32-34
  26. Defenders #33-35
  27. Defenders #35
  28. Defenders #36-37
  29. Defenders #37-39
  30. Defenders Annual #1
  31. Defenders #39
  32. Defenders #40
  33. Defenders #41
  34. Incredible Hulk #206-207
  35. Defenders #42-43
  36. Marvel Comics Super Special #1
  37. Defenders #44-45
  38. Defenders #46
  39. Defenders #47-50
  40. Defenders #51
  41. Defenders #52
  42. Avengers #167
  43. Defenders #53-56
  44. Defenders #57
  45. Marvel Two-In-One #34
  46. Defenders #59
  47. Defenders #60
  48. Doctor Strange Vol 2 #29
  49. Defenders #61
  50. Defenders #62
  51. Defenders #63-64
  52. Defenders #65
  53. Defenders #67-69
  54. Defenders #119
  55. Alias #25
  56. Defenders #70
  57. Defenders #71-73
  58. Defenders #74
  59. Defenders #75
  60. Defenders #76
  61. Defenders #77
  62. Fantastic Four Annual #14
  63. Defenders #78
  64. Defenders #79-80
  65. Defenders #81
  66. Defenders #82-86
  67. Defenders #87-88
  68. Defenders #89
  69. Defenders #90-91
  70. Defenders #92
  71. 71.0 71.1 Defenders #93
  72. Defenders #94
  73. Defenders #95
  74. Defenders #96
  75. Defenders #97
  76. Defenders #98
  77. Defenders #99
  78. Defenders #100
  79. Defenders #101
  80. Defenders #102
  81. Marvel Graphic Novel #1
  82. Tales to Astonish Vol 2 #13
  83. Defenders #103
  84. Contest of Champions Vol 1
  85. Defenders #104
  86. Captain America #268
  87. Defenders #105
  88. Defenders #107
  89. Defenders #117
  90. Nighthawk #1
  91. Nighthawk #2
  92. Nighthawk #3
  93. Defenders Vol 2 #2
  94. Defenders Vol 2 #1-2
  95. 95.0 95.1 Defenders Vol 2 #3-4
  96. Defenders Vol 2 #5
  97. Defenders Vol 2 #6
  98. Defenders Vol 2 #7
  99. Thunderbolts #57-58
  100. Defenders Vol 2 #8-10
  101. Defenders Vol 2 #11
  102. Captain America Vol 3 #50
  103. Defenders Vol 2 #12
  104. The Order #1
  105. The Order #2
  106. 106.0 106.1 106.2 106.3 The Order #3-6
  107. Avengers/JLA #4
  108. 108.0 108.1 Thing Vol 2 #1-3
  109. New Thunderbolts #15
  110. New Thunderbolts #16
  111. She-Hulk Vol 2 #3
  112. New Thunderbolts #17
  113. New Thunderbolts #18
  114. Thunderbolts #100
  115. Thunderbolts #101
  116. Thunderbolts #102
  117. Thing Vol 2 #8
  118. Civil War #1
  119. Wolverine Vol 3 #42
  120. Thunderbolts #105-106
  121. Black Panther Vol 4 #25
  122. Avengers: The Initiative #1
  123. Avengers: The Initiative #2
  124. Avengers: The Initiative #3
  125. Avengers: The Initiative #5
  126. Avengers: The Initiative #10
  127. Avengers: The Initiative #11
  128. Avengers: The Initiative #12
  129. Fear Itself: Fearsome Four #1
  130. Fear Itself: Fearsome Four #2
  131. Fear Itself: Fearsome Four #3
  132. Fear Itself: Fearsome Four #4
  133. Squadron Supreme Vol 4 #8
  134. Interview with Roy Thomas and Jerry Bails in The Justice League Companion (2003) pp. 72–73
  135. Official Handbook of the Marvel Universe A-Z hardcover Vol. 8

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