The Absorbing Man is a villain from the Marvel Universe who has the ability to take on and replicate any power he comes in contact with. This makes him one of the most formidable foes for many heroes, including Thor, Spider-Man and Hulk. He’s also been known to be able to survive bodily destruction which only adds to his mystique as an unbeatable foe.
Factfile (Marvel Encyclopedia)
- Name: Carl “Crusher Creel”
- Occupation: Criminal
- Base: Mobile
- Height: 6ft 4in
- Weight 365 lbs
- Eyes: Blue
- Hair: None
- First Appearance: Journey Into Mystery #114 in March 1965
How It All Began
Carl’s mother had passed away at an early age and Carl resented his father for not being able to take care of him. He spent a lot of time with his fists, earning the nickname “Crusher Creel.” His fighting led him into the ring with Battlin’ Jack Murdock. His aggression caused him to start committing crimes as he made money from it. He felt terrible about these crimes but felt like he had no other choice in the matter.
As we all know, crime doesn’t pay so Carl got arrested and was sent to jail. During his time in jail, Loki chooses Carl to be his puppet in his master plan to destroy Thor. Upon drinking enchanted Asgardian herbs, Creel gained a rare power. The power granted him the ability to take on physical properties from whatever he’d come into contact with.
The Absorbing Man was a mortal foe that Thor knew he had to be wary of, as Creel’s ability to absorb the properties and powers of anything with his touch made him one of the strongest beings on Earth.
When Creel kidnapped Jane Foster, Thor had no choice but to admit defeat. Creel then went on to terrorize further people in another home before their fierce rematch would conclude with him being defeated by Thor’s trickery of turning his body into Helium causing him to float away in space.
Later Creel was abducted from another prison by Beyonder to fight in an unknown war called the Secret Wars. During this time of fighting on a new battlefield for forces that were not his own and facing almost certain death every day, Creel met Titania (Mary MacPherran). They both developed romantic feelings towards one another.
After the Secret Wars, Creel and Titania returned and were recruited by Baron Zemo for a new team called the Masters of Evil. But were defeated in the end by Ant-Man and the Wasp.
After several months of being an item, Titania and Creel finally got married. The two left crime behind and spent most of their time with each other instead. Still, they kept getting into brawls with superheroes like the Black Widow. Their bad luck also continued when Titania got cancer and they tried to kidnap a doctor to cure her, luckily Thor could convince them to just find the proper medical care through the right channels.
For a short time, the Absorbing Man was turned into Greithoth, Breaker of Wills by The Serpent. The Serpent used The Worthy as her henchmen for destruction.
After the final battle where Thor killed the Serpent, Absorbing Man’s hammer was taken from him as well as the hammers of each Worthy.
Duplication of physical and mystical properties:
He can make his body mimic any physical properties he touches and anything that gets touched by him, even if it’s just energy from another form. The transformations are both magical and physiological so he experiences an essential change in the composition of his cells to take on whatever property or object he has touched.
There’s is really no limit to the properties he touches, a couple of examples:
- Gas: Can transform into helium and float away which happened with his first encounter with Thor
- Liquids: Transformed to become part of the ocean
- Solids: Creel has transformed into an Island in the Incredible Hulk comics
- Energy: He even can go nuclear if he wants to
Creel is practically immortal if we think about it. Even when he is completely obliterated, his body will always go back to the previous state where he was alive.
Sources & Image Credit:
- Marvel Encyclopedia
- Absorbing Man Powers, Enemies, History | Marvel