82. Pyro (40 points)
Okay, this is one of those shocking instants I am always referring too. I really wasn't expecting Pyro to get this many points. Not that I have anything against Pyro, but he beat some pretty big names thus far. And its not because he got a lot of high points votes, he had one here or there, but it wasn't that at all. Like a lot of the C-Listers on this list, he just got a ton of one to three point votes. Which is why I find this list far more interesting than the DCU villains one I did. Anywho, enough of that.
Born in Sydney, Australia, Pyro is a mutant who possesses the power to psionically control fire and flame, though not generate it. He wears a flamethrower on his back to provide the flame which he then takes control of. His ability to manipulate flame emerged in his teens, but he was unable to find a practical use for it. After years of working in Southeast Asia as a journalist and novelist, Pyro met the mutant Mystique, who later recruited him to the Brotherhood of Evil Mutants. Though he never served under the team's original leader, Magneto, Pyro did work with the Brotherhood under the command of several of Magneto's subordinates who alternately supervised the group.
Mystique's Brotherhood later offered its services to the United States government in exchange for protection and an official pardon for its crimes, and was renamed Freedom Force. During Freedom Force's final mission in Iraq, the team confronts group of Iraqi operatives known as Desert Sword. There are fatalities on both sides. Silver Sabre is decapitated and Pyro kills the Sword operative 'Veil'. Ultimately Freedom Force is defeated and Pyro and the Blob are captured and forced to serve as bodyguards to the country's military commanders. Later, the Toad buys their release and added them to his new Brotherhood. Pyro swiftly returns to battling the X-Men.
Some years later, Pyro contracted the Legacy Virus, a fatal disease affecting mainly mutants. He went to great lengths to find a cure (encountering Cecilia Reyes at one point), several times at the expense of others, but was unsuccessful in his search and succumbed to the virus. This was just after saving Senator Robert Kelly from a new Brotherhood of Evil Mutants. This act of heroism was also instrumental in changing Senator Kelly's opinion on mutants as a whole, and led to his decision to work toward peaceful co-existence between humans and mutants.
81. Count Nefaria (40 points)
"I love that he is an evil Superman and a mob boss. I would love to see him fight the Avengers again"
Heh. Take a look who is unconscious in his hand. Stupid Hawkeye.
The descendent of a long line of Italian noblemen, Count Luchino Nefaria inherited a vast fortune. Fascinated by technology, Nefaria commissioned researchers to create inventions far in advance of contemporary science. Although he greatly valued his family's tradition of respectability, his lust for even greater power and wealth led Nefaria to become a powerful figure in the Maggia, the notorious international crime syndicate.
After battling a number of superheroes, Nefaria desired superhuman abilities of his own. Gaining the powers of the Living Laser, Power Man, and the Whirlwind, increased his strength a hundred fold. Although his new powers aged him at a rapid pace, he died as the result of an accident while battling Iron Man. Returning from the dead, he was transformed into an ionically powered entity, forcing him to feed on the energies of other ionic beings to sustain his own powers, once again assuming the mantle of Count Nefaria.
80. HYDRA (40 points - 1 first place slot)
"Hail HYDRA! Immortal HYDRA! We shall never be destroyed! Cut off one limb and two more shall take its place! We serve the Supreme Hydra, as the world shall soon serve us!"
HYDRA is a worldwide subversive organization dedicated to global domination. At its height, HYDRA was the most extensive, powerful, and dangerous such organization in history.
Their organization takes its name from the many-headed serpent-like monster of Greek mythology, the Lernaean Hydra, whose venom was lethal and who was known for its ability to grow two heads immediately to replace any head that was severed. (The Lernaean Hydra was slain by Hercules as one of his legendary Twelve Labors.) HYDRA prides itself on its ability to regroup and rebuild itself, allegedly mightier than before after any major defeat just like its namesake. Indeed, the organization has now endured for over four decades.
Shortly upon joining HYDRA, Von Strucker seized control of the organization from its Japanese founders, and moved HYDRA's operations to a private island in the Pacific, named Hydra Island. The original HYDRA Island was invaded by the Leatherneck Raiders and the Japanese Samurai Squad, and the base was destroyed. Strucker slowly steered the organization towards the goal of world domination. That campaign brought him into conflict with Charles Xavier and the future Magneto among others, and once HYDRA became more brazenly public in its operations, eventually led to the creation of the original agency known as S.H.I.E.L.D. specifically to counter HYDRA's threat to world security. After apparently assassinating S.H.I.E.L.D.'s first executive director, Nick Fury was appointed as executive director. HYDRA agents attempted to assassinate Nick Fury before his appointment as S.H.I.E.L.D.'s Director, but failed.
This decision, after several HYDRA campaigns including the failure of the world blackmail attempt using the Betatron Bomb, the creation of the Overkill Horn (designed to detonate all nuclear explosives worldwide), and the bio-engineered "Death-Spore" Bomb, led directly to von Strucker's first death at the hands of Fury and several deceived HYDRA operatives. In the wake of von Strucker's first death, the surviving elements of HYDRA broke into factions that each adopted its own reorganized modus operandi. Several of these factions developed "super-agents" that would occasionally break away in turn to become freelance operatives, or, in some rarer cases, superheroes such as the first Spider-Woman. Von Strucker was eventually revived and reunited several of the HYDRA factions under his leadership to renew his campaign against S.H.I.E.L.D. and humanity for several more years
79. Madame Masque (40 points - 1 first place slot)
"Great visual with the golden mask, interesting romance with Iron Man, intelligent and paranoid. I would love to see her get more "screen" time as a villain for some other heroes."
Count Luchino Nefaria, the Italian nobleman who was once the most powerful figure in the international criminal organization known as the Maggia, had long dreamed of having a son who would serve as his successor. However, Nefaria's wife Renata died while giving birth to their only child, Giulietta. Since Giulietta would now have no mother to raise her, and since Nefaria wanted to give his daughter the respectability that he himself lacked, the Count ordered the wealthy Wall Street financier Byron Frost to raise her in America as his own daughter. Frost was employed by Nefaria at that time to divert his illegal gains into legitimate investments. Giulietta grew up under the name Whitney Frost, believing Byron Frost and his wife to be her true parents. Upon the death of Byron Frost, Count Nefaria revealed to Whitney that he was her real father, and that he intended to train her to be his successor as a Maggia leader. Shocked and distraught, Whitney refused to follow Nefaria's wishes, but the Count threatened to expose her true identity claiming that she would be ostracized by everyone who knew her as a result. Indeed, when Whitney sought help from her fiancée and told him the whole story, he deserted her, fearing that association with her would ruin his political career.
Nefaria trained Whitney in criminal strategy, managing underworld operations, and combat skills, all of which she mastered brilliantly. After Nefaria was finally imprisoned for capturing Washington D.C. through his advanced weaponry and holding it for ransom, his Maggia crime family organization, now based in New York City, chose Whitney as its new leader, or Big M in underworld slang. Whitney proved to be a dedicated and capable leader, but did not involve her organization in such areas of Maggia activity as the narcotics trade. However, she had adopted her father's ambition to accumulate enough power to be able to challenge governments through force, and, to this end, led a raid on Stark Industries headquarters on Long Island to capture highly advanced technological weaponry. The raid proved a fiasco, thanks to Stark's hero identity of Iron Man, and Whitney, her identity as Big M exposed, fled in a skycraft. The skycraft crashed, nearly killing Whitney, and causing chemicals on board to be released that scarred her face. She was found by agents of the power-hungry eccentric billionaire Mordecai Midas, who hired a surgeon to save her life. Midas employed Whitney as his principal criminal operative, and, out of his obsession with gold, had her conceal her damaged face behind a golden mask. She adopted the alias of Madame Masque.
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