Nothing is known yet about the past of Smoke before he became a founding member of Death Row, an infamous team of costumed assassins. Under unrevealed circumstances, he was transformed into a living cloud of poisonous smoke. Presumably, it was during this time that Smoke acquired the cloak he wore to control his gaseous form. Smoke's unique ability to asphyxiating his victims without leaving any evidence made him a valuable member of Death Row.[1]

Recently, Death Row was hired by unidentified Dakota City crimelords to kill Curtis Metcalf, vice president of Alva Technologies. That company's CEO, Edwin Alva, was a secretly major crime lord who decided to retire from organized crime. Alva appointed Metcalf to oversee the legal dismantling of his criminal operations. The unidentified crimelords feared a major loss of revenue if Metcalf succeeded and thus wanted him dead. To ensure this result, the crimelords suggested that Death Row add a new member to their roster: the electricity-wielding Volt, who agreed to kill Metcalf in exchange for his freedom from jail. Death Row believed having Volt on their team was overkill for taking out a mere businessman. Still, they agreed to this stipulation considering the enormous amount of money the crimelords were offering them.[1]

Death Row staked out Curt Metcalf's apartment for days before choosing the night to strike. Their plans were thwarted when freelance spy Sanction ambushed and kidnapped Metcalf, whom he erroneously believed was helping expand Edwin Alva's criminal operations. Death Row trailed Sanction to an abandoned hardware store, where the spy was finally convinced of Metcalf's innocence after interrogating him. When Sanction left the scene, Death Row quickly moved in to seize Metcalf.[1]

As Smoke and his cohorts looked on, Hangman and Hypo prepared to execute Metcalf, who then escaped their grasp. Metcalf evaded Death Row's subsequent attacks to reach his car, which Sanction had used to transport him to the hardware store. As Metcalf tried to flee, Volt struck his car with a blast of electricity that caused it to crash and burst into flame. Death Row moved in to confirm Metcalf's death only to be surprised when the armored vigilante Hardware emerged from the fiery wreck. Hardware took advantage of this by shredding Smoke's cloak, causing him to dissipate. Realizing Hardware was Metcalf, Death Row tried again to kill him, but were soundly defeated.[1]

The police later took Death Row into custody, but could find no trace of smoke, who was assumed to be dead. However, given Smoke's unusual physiology, it is possible that he could reform and return to life.


Unique Physiology: Smoke's formerly human body is now a swirling cloud of gas controlled by his still intact consciousness. His gaseous form gives him a number of metahuman abilities.

  • Toxikinesis: The gases that compose Smoke's immaterial form are extremely poisonous to human beings who inhale them. Thus, he can kill his victims by enveloping and then asphyxiating them.[1]
  • Flight: Smoke can float and fly in the air due to his gaseous form. Apparently Smoke does not need to ride on air currents to move through the air, but it is unclear exactly how he propels himself forward.[1]
  • Intangibility: Since he is a gas cloud, Smoke is immune to physical injury. Solid objects like fists, bullets, etc. pass harmlessly through him.[1]


Vulnerability: Smoke is completely dependent on his special cloak to maintain the integrity of his gaseous form. If the cloak is damaged or destroyed, he will begin to quickly disperse into the atmosphere with perhaps fatal results.[1]


Smoke wears a cloak that enables him to maintain control over his gaseous form. How the cloak remains attached to his non-solid form is a mystery.[1]


Flight under own power

enemy of Hardware



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