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The original leader of the H.I.V.E. was an unidentified individual who once discovered an alien and used the being's technology to build his empire. The H.I.V.E. Master took a mistress and established an inner circle of seven hooded administrators known as the Council of Seven. The identities of the

Quote1.png Like me, they are all scientists who have previously lost battles to various super-heroes... But they have all learned to co-operate and use their mutual skills to make them undefeatable. Quote2.png
Brains Beldonsrc

H.I.V.E. was a mysterious organization that specialized in high-level contract assassinations and mercenary acts of terrorism.

History

The original leader of the H.I.V.E. was an unidentified individual who once discovered an alien and used the being's technology to build his empire. The H.I.V.E. Master took a mistress and established an inner circle of seven hooded administrators known as the Council of Seven. The identities of the Council of Seven were likewise unknown, save that they were a coalition of important underworld figures. To date, the only Council of Seven member who has ever been identified is Professor Torgo, an old foe of Wonder Woman. Like many secret organizations, the H.I.V.E. used its power and influence in a bid to acquire complete global domination. In order to strengthen their reputation amidst the underworld, they decided to make a name for themselves by eliminating members of the super-hero community.

The first known criminal excursion of the H.I.V.E. involved dispatching an agent with the alias "Willis Ryan" to conspire with a corrupt politician named Al Diamond to fake Diamond's own kidnapping. Diamond was running for the District Attorney's office in Metropolis on a platform of being tough on crime, and his staged abduction was intended to create the appearance that the criminal element regarded him as a serious threat to their free rein. Lois Lane learned about this conspiracy beforehand, so the H.I.V.E. hired The Extractor, a former "de-programmer" of cult members, to erase her memories. However, Lois escaped and was marked for death by the organization. Meanwhile, Jimmy Olsen, who was initially a supporter of Al Diamond, stumbled onto the plot while attempting to "save" Diamond. The instability of the scheme introduced by these factors caused the Council of Seven to pull the plug on the scheme, ordering "Willis Ryan" to eliminate Al Diamond. Lois and Jimmy were then captured by H.I.V.E. agents and brought to one of their offshore hi-tech lairs, although the self-destruct sequence was activated once both Daily Planet reporters managed to turn the tables on their captors and escape.[1]

Learning that a giant-sized artificial construct shaped in Superman's image was entering Earth orbit, and that this construct had been fashioned on Earth many years prior before being sent to space to begin with, the H.I.V.E. captured two ex-cons named Larch and Blisser and learned of their scheme from years ago to exploit "Superman Island," due to their discovery that it was being used as a Kryptonite repository.[2] The H.I.V.E. detonated part of Superman Island over Metropolis, collected much of the released Kryptonite, and captured Lois Lane to motivate Superman into hot pursuit. The H.I.V.E. transported Lois to a fully automated offshore base and attempted to kill Superman with an arsenal of Kryptonite-based weapons. However, Superman obtained temporary immunity to Kryptonite from an alien colony which had established itself on Superman Island during its aimless drift through space. Using this advantage, Superman demolished the H.I.V.E. base and rescued Lois.[3]

The H.I.V.E. attempted to hire Slade Wilson, the Terminator, to eliminate the then recently revived Teen Titans. Slade demanded payment in advance, but the H.I.V.E. refused. Unwilling to compromise his business practices, Slade turned his back on them. Undeterred, H.I.V.E. then turned to Slade's son Grant. Grant Wilson had already experienced an unfavorable altercation with the Teen Titans - one that cost him his girlfriend Carol Sladky. Grant agreed to undergo a biological enhancement process that would enable him to utilize 100% of his brain, making him the equal of the Terminator. After the process was complete, the H.I.V.E. provided him the costume and code name of the Ravager and sent him after the Titans. What they failed to tell him however, was that the more he used his enhanced strength and reflexes, the greater toll it would ultimately take on his body. Ravager attacked the Titans in New York and as predicted, the excessive energy quickly ate away at him, prematurely aging him to the point of death. The Terminator arrived on the scene just in time to cradle his son in his arms. Grant never knew that the Terminator was also his father. Slade recognized that Grant's contract for the H.I.V.E. was unfulfilled and agreed to honor his son's responsibility by killing the Titans.[4]

The H.I.V.E. proceeded with their next plan to steal the research data of Dayton Industries' Project: Promethium, which involved hiring Jordan Weir, the Puppeteer, who was both a scientist who worked on the project and a recidivist super-villain, to assassinate members of the Dayton Industries Board of Directors. The H.I.V.E.'s strategy was audacious: To intimidate the entire company into surrendering the secret of self-regenerating synthetic material. Although this innovation could be given a wide variety of applications, from medical to military, the H.I.V.E. solely desired it for its potential in aiding the development of a self-pepetuating bomb for usage in terrorist acts. Fortunately, administrative assistant Vernon Questor informed Steve Dayton's adoptive son Gar Logan, putting the Teen Titans on the case of capturing the Puppeteer. While the Titans succeeded in dismantling the Puppeteer's immediate operations, the villain escaped justice and subsequently became a target of retribution for the H.I.V.E. itself.[5][6]

Deathstroke the Terminator stepped in to simultaneously fulfill his late son's contract to kill the Titans while punishing the H.I.V.E. for creating the circumstances of Grant's death, stealing the research data for Project: Promethium for himself. The H.I.V.E. attempted to acquire the data from Slade, only to be reminded that Slade's obligation to their organization extended to fulfilling the contract to execute the Teen Titans and no further. Slade therefore arranged an auction for a Promethium-powered bomb, which representatives of the H.I.V.E., the KGB, a South Korean crime cartel, an Islamic Arab terrorist group, and a deposed former dictator of Libya were scheduled to attend. Slade discovered that the data did not provide enough information with which to make an authentic Promethium bomb, so he stole a nuclear warhead from the U.S. Navy instead and passed it off as one. To give his bidders a demonstration of the bomb, and eliminate the Titans, all in one fell swoop, Slade kidnapped Sarah Simms and held her hostage to force the Titans to surrender, after which Slade bound the Titans at ground zero. However, the Titans used their powers creatively in concert to simulate the effects of the bomb while defusing the actual warhead, and the H.I.V.E. representatives killed all the other bidders at the auction, believing that Slade would be content with the payment stipulated in his contract for killing the Titans, whereas they would be able to keep the money they brought for the actual auction. Instead, Slade dispatched the H.I.V.E. representatives and took their money anyway. While the survival of the Teen Titans aggrieved the Terminator, Slade successfully fought them off and made a clean getaway regardless.[7]

The H.I.V.E. returned their focus to Superman briefly, seeking to take advantage of Neutron's plan to destroy Metropolis with a nuclear explosion by rigging up one of Neutron's decoy-bombs with an explosive Kryptonite-gas capsule. A battalion of H.I.V.E. agents then converged on the location and attempted to gun the Man of Steel down with Kryptonite-powered weapons, but they were hastily dealt with so that Superman could pay attention to the greater threat of Neutron.[8] One of Superman's old mad scientist enemies, Dr. Willis Darrow, was recruited into the Council of Seven to replace a member who was slain by the Terminator during his auction.[9][10]

Desperate to prove himself to the rest of the Council, Darrow acted as a rogue agent, hiring consummate confidence trickster Franklin Crandall to exploit the Teen Titan Starfire's sense of alienation on Earth and manipulate her into falling in love with him. Using Crandall's connection to Starfire, Darrow intended to acquire information about the Teen Titans' operations that he could use to validate the Council's faith in his abilities. Crandall began to feel unexpected pangs of reluctance due to Starfire's relative naïveté compared to his usual victims and revolted against Darrow's sinister designs. As a result, Darrow murdered Crandall, who was found bleeding out by the Titans mere seconds before his demise, during which time he gave them the location of Darrow's hideout. Starfire burst into Darrow's abode and nearly killed him in her fury, but was talked down from going through with it by Wonder Girl. Darrow used the Titans' internal conflict to escape, but the other members of the Council of Seven condemned Darrow for acting individually without the knowledge or sanction of the rest of the Council, consequently executing him by 6 shots to the chest and dumping his corpse on the streets of New York.[9]

The Council of Seven, now down one member, enacted a scheme to eliminate both Superman and Lois Lane, staging an attack by H.I.V.E. paratroopers on Metropolis Airfield that was intended to fail. Lois was permitted to capture Alice Smith, a female H.I.V.E. agent, and as the Council anticipated, Lois got the idea to impersonate Alice using Jimmy Olsen's disguise and makeup talents, in order to get the scoop on their latest plans. The H.I.V.E. arranged for the release of "Alice" on bail and deliberately allowed Lois to infiltrate a chapter of their organization. Eventually, Lois uncovered documents detailing a future raid of a S.T.A.R. Labs nuclear power plant. Afterwards, Lois was permitted to escape the H.I.V.E. installation with the assistance of Superman. The H.I.V.E. Council intended for Lois to find the documents, as they had been planted to trick Lois, and Superman by extension, into believing that the power plant was their true target.[10]

The very next day, a nominal force was dispatched to attack the power plant to occupy Superman, while helicopters were sent to intercept the train transporting the radioactive waste from the plant to its dump site and capture the lead-lined waste disposal containers. The H.I.V.E.'s true plan was to pack a sensitive explosive compartment with the radioactive waste and launch it into the Earth's orbit via rocket propulsion. The H.I.V.E. would then be able to ransom the globe not to cause untold devastation by detonating the compartment and dispersing a radioactive aerosol throughout the Earth's atmosphere. To the H.I.V.E.'s misfortune, Jimmy Olsen disguised himself as a waste disposal worker to board the train before its departure and was inadvertently taken by the H.I.V.E. capture team along with the radioactive waste containers, using his signal watch to summon Superman to the true location of interest. Superman could not prevent the launching of the rocket and accidentally caused the radioactive payload to detonate in the Earth's orbit, but Superman managed to destroy the waste with the heat of the solar winds before it could drift back down to the Earth's atmosphere. Simultaneously, Alice Smith was liberated from prison by her superiors and ordered to ambush Lois in her apartment, but Alice was subdued by Lois and returned to custody.[11]

"Brains" Beldon, a mad scientist who once fought Batman[12], sought to win the vacant spot in the Council of Seven by creating a suit of hi-tech armor and outfitting his pliable, eager teenage son Michael with it to attack and kill all of the Teen Titans as the Disruptor. Kid Flash discovered the Beldons' base of operations and intervened, and while he got himself captured, he managed to send the other Titans a signal leading to his location. While there was insufficient evidence to convict "Brains" of anything, Michael took the blame for his father's scheme out of misplaced loyalty and was sentenced to 10 years in prison. The H.I.V.E. rejected the elder Beldon's application to join the Council in light of his failure, causing "Brains" to disown his son in shame.[13]

The H.I.V.E. briefly took aim at New York's other superhero protector, Supergirl, and hired Superman's nemesis Carl Draper, the Master Jailer, to find a means of disposing of the Girl of Steel.[14][15] Draper first struck at Supergirl using a ray that could convert her body into an immaterial, intangible form[16], but when Supergirl regained her material presence with help from the Atom in Ivy Town[17], the Jailer used another machine on Supergirl which would convert her body into substanceless light energy. Supergirl escaped from this predicament as well and put a stop to the Jailer's campaign against her, never learning of the H.I.V.E.'s behind-the-scenes involvement.[18]

Slade attempted to fulfill his contract with the H.I.V.E. several times over the next few years, and even enlisted a troubled young teenager named Terra to assist him, but he never succeeded in stopping the Titans once and for all. In Slade's last attempt to fulfill the contract, he briefly succeeded in capturing the Titans and brought them to the organization's undersea base.

At some point, the H.I.V.E. Mistress murdered her husband and took control of his organization. Although clearly insane, she nevertheless garnered the same obedience from her underlings as her husband once did. She initiated an ambitious scheme called Operation: Waterworks wherein she attempted to destroy the underwater city of Atlantis. This was meant to be little more than a display of power which she would then use to blackmail world leaders into surrendering to the H.I.V.E. The Mistress' plan alerted the attention of former Titans members Aqualad and Aquagirl who in turn sought assistance from the Titans. The Teen Titans journeyed to the H.I.V.E.'s undersea base for one final confrontation. They succeeded in staving off the attack against Atlantis and also crippled the H.I.V.E.'s station. Knowing that defeat was near, the H.I.V.E. Mistress refused to be taken alive. She murdered the Council of Seven and then took her own life. With her demise, this incarnation of the H.I.V.E. was gone forever.[19][20]

Some agents of the original H.I.V.E. survived however, and returned to the United States to pursue alternate avenues of the criminal lifestyle. Many became members of the Wildebeest Society.[21]

Infinite Crisis

Around the time of the Infinite Crisis, Queen Bee was in control of a H.I.V.E. organization, and used its resources to aid the Society.

Little has been heard from it since then. Current intel from the American military has former H.I.V.E. bases showing up in connection to a mysterious player known as "Black Seven", so it is possible that there was a schism within the organization.

Notes

  • Although the H.I.V.E. was originally introduced during DC's Earth-One era of publication, their existence following the events of the 1985-86 limited series Crisis on Infinite Earths remains intact. However, some elements of the character's Pre-Crisis history may have been altered or removed for Post-Crisis New Earth continuity, and should be considered apocryphal.
  • The identity of the alien discovered by the original H.I.V.E. Master has never been revealed. However, it was later discovered that this being was also the father of Titans reservists Thunder and Lightning.

Trivia

See Also

Links

  • None.

Footnotes

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Titans Villain(s)
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This character is or was primarily an enemy of the Teen Titans, the Titans, or any of the other various Titans incarnations. This template will categorize articles that include it into the "Titans Villains" category.

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Superman Villain(s)
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This character is or was primarily an enemy of Superman in any of his various incarnations, or members of the Superman Family. This template will categorize articles that include it into the "Superman Villains category."

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