By his own accounts, the Matador is a descendant of a 14th Century matador who was given the Crown of Cortez by the queen of Spain. When his ancestor fell in love with a woman he gave her the crown. However, she betrayed him to another man and the ancestor died in a sword fight defending the honour of his home. As he died he cursed the crown, saying that all who held the crown would know nothing but bloodshed.
In the late 1940's the Matador became obsessed with obtaining the Crown of Cortez. By 1948 he had tracked the crown down to New York where it was in the possession of Lolita D'Espana. The Matador also learned that Lolita had pawned off the crowns largest ruby and sold its largest diamond to Spanish curio collector James Ortelli and sought to reclaim them. He first attacked the pawn shop where the ruby was own, shooting down the owner. The shots attracted Captain America and Bucky (who in their alter egos of Jeff Mace and Fred Davis had coincidentally accepted an invitation from Lolita to see the Crown of Cortez). During the fight, the Matador knocked out the heroes with a narcotic gas and fled the scene with the pawned ruby. The Matador and his men next attacked the home of James Ortelli, really a Spanish castle transported to America stone-by-stone. There the Matador forced Ortelli to turn over the diamond. However, when Captain America and Bucky had once more interfered, the Matador held Ortelli's daughter hostage. Captain America managed to disarm the Matador and the villain then dived out a window into the castle moat below and was presumed drowned.
The Matador survived however, and then took Lolita hostage in her own home. Learning that she had entrusted the crown to Jeff Mace, the Matador forced her to write a note to Fred Davis asking him to return the crown. When Fred did he was captured and the two were tied to a chair. The Matador then set off a fire bomb to burn the two alive and stuck around to watch them burn. However, Captain America came to their rescue and easily defeated the Matador's goons. Confronting the Matador, Captain America easily bested him in one-on-one combat. Defeated, the Matador attempted to back away for a surprise attack but ended up foolishly backing into the flames he had started and burned to death. Cap then rescued Lolita and Bucky and recovered the crown from the burning building.
The Matador's primary weapon was his a fencing sword as opposed to those typically used by bullfighters. He also used smoke bombs that unleashed a narcotic gas that incapacitated those who inhaled the fumes, and fire bombs that could star small fires.
The Matador should not be confused with the modern day Matador.
- 1 Appearances of Matador (1940s) (Earth-616)
- Minor Appearances of Matador (1940s) (Earth-616)
- Media Matador (1940s) (Earth-616) was Mentioned in
- 1 Images featuring Matador (1940s) (Earth-616)
- Quotations by or about Matador (1940s) (Earth-616)
- Character Gallery: Matador (1940s) (Earth-616)
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