Nigel Keane was born in Belfast. He served in the British police constabulary in Belfast for some years before moving to London. There, he fell in love with Anne, his partner while investigating the IRA. Their relationship lasted until an Irish terrorist/mercenary by the name of Seamus O'Brien, killed her in front of him. In the ensuing fight, Keane was mortally wounded. But before dying, his powers manifested, saving his life and making him Hellstrike. O'Brien later became the villain Deathtrap, leader of the MERCs, a mercenary unit of super powered beings. Hellstrike bears a long grudge against Deathtrap for both this and Anne's murder.
Nigel joined StormWatch One, the main team of superheroes serving the UN. In the Wildstorm universe, the UN is secretly a menacing worldwide conspiracy led by gun-toting, paranoid "Secret Masters". While they are heroes, the operatives of Stormwatch are quite ruthless and do not hesitate to violate the rights of a country in order to advance the agenda of the UN.
After a battle against Deathtrap, Hellstrike was severely injured, fell into coma and his neural circuitry began to fall apart. His body started to lose cohesion and broke into pure energy in a tremendous explosion that ruined Skywatch's sickbay. At this time, Nigel decided to give up his life. Then, Fuji contacted him in his comatose state and persuaded him that his life was still worth something, with Fuji using himself as an example. With the help of StormWatch engineering genius Link, Nigel received a tailor made containment suit, much like Fuji's, except that Fuji's gives him the control of his own density and avoids radioactive gas leaks, while Hellstrike's acts as a force field preventing him from exploding.
He can manipulate it at will, such as when he learned he could grow genitalia, something he offered to show his teammates. They refused. Unfortunately, others can manipulate it, such as when the High grabbed his chest and immobilized him.
When Bendix reshaped StormWatch, Hellstrike was attached to StormWatch Prime under Winter's command. StormWatch Prime was the unit devoted to deal with superhuman threats in hot war situations.
At some point, he began a relationship with Fahrenheit that they kept secret until Weatherman Battalion found out - it was contrary to regulations about fraternization between field officers. Battalion had to break into Hellstrike's quarters because neither he nor Lauren were responding to the radio calls.
Hellstrike was one of the four officers that died in the Aliens infestation. Hellstrike was killed when his containment suit was destroyed during an attack by Xenomorphs on Skywatch, along with Fahrenheit, Fuji, and others.
It is revealed that The Doctor (Habib bin Hassan) was able to bring him back after the events of Worldstorm.
Hellstrike works for Jackson King's StormWatch Team Alpha, alongside Winter and Fuji. He is prone to depression over the world's condition and wonders after the lives of his family.
- Unique Physiology: He's a living weapon of pure energy, what the scientist call a gaseous sentient posthuman entity, held within a slightly pliable force field.
- Investigation: Formerly a Scotland Yard inspector, he also proved to be a valuable asset in non-combat situation.
- Containment Breach: Unfortunately, since one of his first missions, he's been bound to a containment suit that prevents him from dispersing. He later learned to create a humanoid-shaped force field to contain his gaseous form.
- Hellstrike has appeared in the following non-WildStorm Image publications: Savage Dragon #41.
- 70 Appearances of Nigel Keane (Wildstorm Universe)
- 8 Images featuring Nigel Keane (Wildstorm Universe)
- 2 Quotations by or about Nigel Keane (Wildstorm Universe)
- Character Gallery: Nigel Keane (Wildstorm Universe)