Philip Master was born in the United States, but renounced his American citizenship to work for communist forces behind the Iron Curtain, after he was caught and convicted of selling top secret information to foreign powers. He became an agent of sabotage and terrorism using his impressive knowledge of chemistry and specialized talent for creating acid compounds for missions of chemical warfare. He has been dubbed the Acid Master because of that expertise, and the wide variety of acid-chemical compounds he has created for different uses.

To combat the threat Masters posed to American interests, the FBI decided to recruit a special agent who was not known to the enemy for a special mission to bring the Acid Master to justice. For this mission, they chose investigative journalist Clark Kent, not realizing that Kent was also Superman, because they felt that Kent's personality…that of a devout coward…made him a much less likely suspect than someone who was more dynamic. Using the training the FBI gave him, as well as surreptitious use of his super-powers, Kent was able to foil the Acid Master's scheme to sabotage the U.S. space program and to bring Masters to justice.

Subsequently, Masters was tried and convicted of plotting against the United States and sentenced to life imprisonment in a federal penitentiary.


  • This version of Philip Master (Earth-One), including all history and corresponding appearances, was erased from existence following the collapse of the original Multiverse in the 1985–86 Crisis on Infinite Earths limited series. Even though versions of the character may have since appeared, this information does not apply to those versions.



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