Aqueduct (comics)

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Aqueduct
GhostRider-23.jpg
Aqueduct in first incarnation as Water Wizard (bottom right corner) battling Ghost Rider on the cover of Ghost Rider #23 (Apr. 1977). Art by Don Heck.
Publication information
Publisher Marvel Comics
First appearance Ghost Rider Vol. 2 #23 (Apr. 1977)
Created by Jim Shooter
Don Heck
In-story information
Alter ego Peter van Zante
Team affiliations Thunderbolts
Force of Nature
Masters of Evil
Notable aliases Water Wizard
Abilities Water manipulation

Aqueduct (Peter van Zante), originally known as Water Wizard, is a fictional character that appears in comic books published by Marvel Comics.

Publication history[edit]

The character was created by Jim Shooter and Don Heck and first appeared in Ghost Rider #23 (Apr. 1977).

Fictional character biography[edit]

Peter van Zante enlists in the U.S. military as a soldier, and after being wounded in action he is treated with an experimental radiation device while out at sea. A lightning strike during a freak storm destroys the device but rejuvenates van Zante. While convalescing, van Zante discovers he can manipulate water and create semi-solid three-dimensional shapes. Becoming a professional criminal, van Zante dons a costume and adopts the alias of Water Wizard, and robs a brokerage house. He is then employed by the criminal the Enforcer and assigned to kill Ghost Rider, but fails.[1] He salvages the Enforcer's ring from San Diego harbor, and battles and is defeated by Ghost Rider.[2] The magician Moondark also recruits Water Wizard in Chicago to battle Ghost Rider, but Water Wizard is burned by Ghost Rider's mystical flames again; he goes into shock and is institutionalized.[3] Ghost Rider then breaks van Zante out of prison shortly afterwards to assist a drought-stricken town.[4] At this time van Zante travels to Saudi Arabia, where he discovers he can also affect forms of liquid other than water, including oil, and after a brief criminal venture and battling the Arabian Knight, he is returned to prison by Ghost Rider.[5] Although Water Wizard is later employed by criminal mastermind Justin Hammer to battle Iron Man with several other villains, he panics and flees the fight, earning Hammer's enmity.[6]

Gary Gilbert invites Water Wizard to attend a meeting at the Bar With No Name to discuss the threat of the Scourge of the Underworld. Due to a flat tire he is late to the meeting and is not present when the attendees, including Gilbert, are killed by the Scourge. Water Wizard subsequently discovers the 17 victims and turns himself in to Captain America, who later captures the assassin.[7] Several years later during Acts of Vengeance, Water Wizard and many other villains are freed from prison by Doctor Doom to attack Four Freedoms Plaza and battle the Fantastic Four, but van Zante ends up arguing with and fighting against fellow villain Hydro-Man.[8] Failure follows failure as van Zante is sidelined by construction workers during a futile attack on the superhero team the Avengers,[9] and is later defeated by Captain America in seconds.[10]

Water Wizard eventually reappears with a new costume and alias — Aqueduct. He joins with three other super villains with elemental abilities to form the team Force of Nature. The group is employed by Project: Earth to prevent rain forest razing, and battles the superhero team the New Warriors.[11] Battling the New Warriors later, Force of Nature is defeated again.[12] Aqueduct then joins the fifth generation of the Masters of Evil and battles the superhero team the Thunderbolts.[13]

During the Civil War storyline, Aqueduct is forced along with many other supervillains to join the Thunderbolts Army.[14]

During the Dark Reign storyline, Aqueduct is revealed to be back with Force of Nature, which is now the Initiative's Oregon team.[15]

Powers and abilities[edit]

A power surge in an experimental cell stimulator while out at sea gave Van Zante the psychokinetic ability to control and shape all forms of liquid (including oil) for virtually any effect, such as rainstorms, floods, tidal waves, water slides, and mobile animated water creatures. Aqueduct can manipulate thousands of gallons at a time. However, he cannot control the temperature of water or combine hydrogen and oxygen to create water.

References[edit]

  1. ^ Ghost Rider #23 (Apr. 1977)
  2. ^ Ghost Rider #24 (Jun. 1977)
  3. ^ Ghost Rider #59 (Aug. 1981)
  4. ^ Ghost Rider #61 (Oct. 1981)
  5. ^ Ghost Rider #62 (Nov. 1981)
  6. ^ Iron Man #126-127 (Sep - Oct. 1979)
  7. ^ Captain America #320 (Aug. 1986)
  8. ^ Fantastic Four #336 (Jan. 1990)
  9. ^ Avengers Annual #19 (1990)
  10. ^ Captain America #414 (Apr. 1993)
  11. ^ New Warriors #8-9 (Feb. - Mar. 1990)
  12. ^ New Warriors #29 - 30 (Nov. - Dec. 1993)
  13. ^ Thunderbolts #24-25 (Mar. - Apr. 1999)
  14. ^ Thunderbolts vol. 2, #107 (Dec. 2006)
  15. ^ Avengers: The Initiative #26

External links[edit]

  • Aqueduct at Marvel.com
  • Aqueduct at the Appendix to the Handbook of the Marvel Universe