Avalanche (comics)

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Avalanche
Avalanche XCorps.jpg
Publication information
Publisher Marvel Comics
First appearance Uncanny X-Men #141 (January 1981)
Created by Chris Claremont
John Byrne
In-story information
Alter ego Dominikos Ioannis Petrakis[1]
Species Human Mutant
Team affiliations X-Corps
Freedom Force
Project: Wideawake
Brotherhood of Evil Mutants
Notable aliases Dominic Janos Petros, Jon Bloom, Dominic Szilard, Nick[2]
Abilities Geological manipulation via seismic wave generation from his hands.

Avalanche (Dominikos Ioannis Petrakis[1]) is a fictional character, a mutant supervillain and an enemy of the X-Men.

A Cretan mutant, Avalanche possesses the ability to generate seismic waves from his hands that are strong enough to create earthquakes of varying sizes and to disintegrate any substance other than living tissue. He has been a member of the Brotherhood of Mutants and Freedom Force.

The animated series X-Men: Evolution portrays him as Lance Alvers, a misguided mutant teenager and one time romantic love interest of the X-Men's Shadowcat.

Publication history[edit]

Created by writer Chris Claremont and artist/co-writer John Byrne, he first appeared in Uncanny X-Men #141 (January 1981).

Fictional character biography[edit]

Avalanche's story before Mystique recruits him for the second Brotherhood of Evil Mutants is largely a mystery. It is known, however, that he is an immigrant from the Greek island of Crete. There, he lives a quiet life until Mystique invites him to join her new Brotherhood. During his first public appearance with the Brotherhood, the team unsuccessfully attempts to assassinate Senator Robert Kelly during his hearings and testimony on his belief that mutants pose a mortal threat to humanity. The X-Men arrive to stop the assassination and battle the new Brotherhood.[3] After escaping the fray, Avalanche continues his support of Mutant supremacy via terrorist and criminal activities and battling the Avengers with the Brotherhood.[4]

Avalanche briefly leaves the Brotherhood and attempts to blackmail the state of California into paying him an enormous sum to prevent him from using his power to generate an earthquake. Avalanche fights the Hulk alongside Landslide on this occasion and suffers broken arms when he attempts to use his powers against the Hulk.[5] When he returns to the Brotherhood, together they encounter Rom and Hybrid.[6] The team later battles the X-Men as the "Brotherhood of Evil Mutants" one final time.[7]

After that, The Brotherhood's leader Mystique offered the group's services to the United States government. Their first mission under their new name of Freedom Force was to capture the mutant Magneto on behalf of the federal government.[8] The government then sent Freedom Force to capture the Avengers.[9] While seeking to arrest Rusty Collins, he clashed with X-Factor.[10] Freedom Force then fought the X-Men in Dallas and was present at the X-Men's apparent demise,[11] and battled the New Mutants in Dallas as well.[12] Freedom Force then battled Cyclops and Marvel Girl.[13] Freedom Force again tried to arrest Rusty Collins and battled the New Mutants,[14] but were able to arrest Rusty and Skids as well.[15] They were also dispatched to rescue Senator Robert Kelly from a South American drug syndicate that had kidnapped him, battling the syndicate's superhuman agents in the process.[16] Freedom Force also had a costly battle with the Reavers on Muir Island where a number of members were killed or seriously injured.[17] During the Acts of Vengeance, Avalanche teamed with Blob and Pyro against the Avengers.[18] Avalanche then joined Freedom Force's effort to stop a prison breakout at the Vault.[19] Avalanche then participated in Freedom Force's final mission in Kuwait. He abandoned Blob and Pyro during the battle with Desert Sword to save the seriously injured Crimson Commando.[20]

When Freedom Force was disbanded after the botched mission in the Gulf War, Avalanche continued to work for the government as part of Project: Wideawake, but soon left when he found out that his friend Pyro had contracted the Legacy Virus.[21] Avalanche spent a lot of time afterwards trying to help find a cure for his friend's condition, but he eventually gave up and Pyro died.[volume & issue needed]

Avalanche was then recruited by Sean Cassidy to become a member of his new X-Corp. Cassidy however didn't trust him because of his criminal and terrorist past and Avalanche was lightly brainwashed to serve by Lady Mastermind.[volume & issue needed] Mystique would later infiltrate X-Corp, slice Cassidy's throat and take the members of X-Corp out of Lady Mastermind's trance.[volume & issue needed] Avalanche, alongside the Blob and some of the other Mutants that had joined against their will, ravaged the city of Paris, with Avalanche completely destroying the Eiffel Tower.[volume & issue needed]

Avalanche was able to escape back to New York City, but destroying the Eiffel Tower had left him generally known to the international community and he was assaulted by policemen in the center of New York City, but he was taken down quickly and cleanly by the then-powerless Rahne Sinclair (Wolfsbane) and delivered to the authorities.[volume & issue needed] He was soon rescued by Exodus as long as he would join his incarnation of the Brotherhood.[volume & issue needed] Their first attack was in Philadelphia, with the idea to draw the X-Men out. This is where Avalanche manifests a newfound ability to affect organic matter by shocking Rogue into submission.[volume & issue needed] He appears again in the attack on the X-Mansion with the rest of Exodus' Brotherhood.[volume & issue needed] After a long battle that leaves the recently re-built X-Mansion almost again in ruins, Avalanche and the rest of the Brotherhood are sucked into the black hole in Shen Xorn's head.[volume & issue needed]

The Brotherood, alongside Juggernaut and Nocturne were teleported into the Mojoverse, where Exodus sold Juggernaut and Nocturne for the Brotherhood's freedom.[volume & issue needed] Although they decide not to disband the group, they still decide to go their different ways as Exodus has to prepare for the future.[volume & issue needed] Avalanche was one of the few mutants to keep his powers during the M-Day.[volume & issue needed] By the time the X-Men establish themselves in San Francisco, Avalanche, going by the alias "Nick", establishes a bar in order to make a living away from crime. When the X-Men moved their headquarters to San Francisco, Petros was frightened that they would eventually come for him for his past crimes. As he was packing in hopes of leaving his new-found life, the X-Men popped in with a friendly warning that they have a truce but will be back if he ever decides to return to a life of crime. As they leave, with his place of business and apartment trashed, Petros looks around, mumbling to himself; "Fucking X-Men..:"[2]

When Norman Osborn takes over S.H.I.E.L.D. and starts his war against Mutants in the heart of San Francisco, Avalanche is in the middle of it.[volume & issue needed] He is seen by Gambit during the riots with Erg and when Ares makes himself known, Avalanche attacks him by causing the earth to rise up under him. Ares then knocks him out by choking him.[22] He is seen one more time, sitting drunk in his own bar together with other mutants. They are angry that humans are trying to prevent new mutant births and Avalanche participates in the riot. He has the unfortunate circumstance of being paired up against Daken, who easily dodges the worried Avalanche's tremor and was about to slice him. He is taken into custody along with several other mutants who participated in the riots.[23] Eventually Avalanche and the other imprisoned mutants are freed by the X-Force and he becomes a resident of Utopia.[24]

Whilst Utopia and all of San Francisco are trapped in an energy dome created by Bastion, and the mutant race face extermination at the hands of Nimrod Sentinels from the future, Avalanche is among many of Utopia's non-X-Men residents who have now taken up fighting alongside their former rivals. He can be seen fighting alongside the X-Men Sunspot, Husk, and Boom-Boom, defending the passage of the Bart Tunnels.[25] As an "X-Man", Avalanche is also called in by Cyclops during the Fear Itself storyline to help them stop Kurrth. Avalanche uses his powers to create a chasm that Kurrth would not cross, but Kurrth creates a psychic bridge for him and his brainwashed followers to cross anyway.[26]

Following the Avengers vs. X-Men storyline, Avalanche was offered a place at the Jean Grey School by Wolverine but he declined due to the fact that he had a bar in San Francisco, along with the fact that being associated with Utopia offered him all kinds of protective benefits.[volume & issue needed] Avalanche is then kidnapped by the Red Skull who removed part of his brain, replacing it with a machine that turned Avalanche into a puppet to attack New York City. As Captain America tries to stop him, he claimed that "the inciting act is complete" and jumped to his apparent death.[27]

Powers and abilities[edit]

Avalanche is a mutant with the superhuman ability to generate powerful seismic waves from his hands, creating highly destructive effects. The waves can cause an inorganic object to shatter or crumble into dust and has in recent years been shown to affect organic matter as well. When directed against large objects like buildings or upon the earth itself, the seismic waves can produce effects similar to those of an earthquake or avalanche within limited areas. Avalanche need not touch an object to affect it; he can direct the waves against it from some distance away.

Avalanche himself is immune to the generation of his own vibratory waves. However, if the seismic waves were reflected back at him, he would be injured. Avalanche's power originally had little or no effect on organic tissue, with the reflected vibrations from organic matter ("feedback") injuring him, as when he once tried to attack the Hulk, but lately this has appeared to no longer be the case.

As yet there is no known limit to the amount of area upon which Avalanche can use his powers at one time. There is no evidence yet, however, that he could create an earthquake capable of destroying an entire city.

Avalanche is a fair hand-to-hand combatant and received unarmed combat training while a member of Freedom Force.

Avalanche wears an armored battle suit that gives him enhanced resistance to injury, up to and including protecting him from a land mine. While a member of Freedom Force, he used a two-way radio device for communication with other Freedom Force members.

Other versions[edit]

Age of Apocalypse[edit]

In the Age of Apocalypse, Avalanche was one of the select mutants that were approached by Sinister and offered a chance to join his Elite Mutant Force. Avalanche, however, refused Sinister's offer, for which he was captured at the Breeding Pens. During an escape attempt, Avalanche was killed and his corpse turned over to the Dark Beast for experimentation.[28]

Marvel Zombies[edit]

In Marvel Zombies: Dead Days, he is seen as a zombie alongside a zombie version of the Freedom Force fighting the suddenly zombified X-Men.[29]

House of M[edit]

Dominic appears as a member of the NYPD strikeforce known as the Brotherhood.[30]

Marvel Mangaverse[edit]

Avalanche is a murderous ninja, part of the 'Shadowcat Clan', under the control of the Hellfire Club. He works with Pyro and Iceman. His form in this reality is more wooden and he can extend his arms to form battering rams.[volume & issue needed]

In other media[edit]

Television[edit]

Avalanche (left) in X-Men the Animated Series, along with Pyro.
  • Avalanche appeared in the X-Men animated series voiced by Rod Coneybeare. He was always accompanied by Pyro and later on, the Blob. He is part of the Brotherhood, which is led by Mystique.
Avalanche in X-Men: Evolution.
  • In the X-Men: Evolution cartoon, Avalanche (voiced by Christopher Grey) has been heavily re-imagined. Here, he is a high school student named Lance Alvers. He is a member of the Brotherhood, but this version of Avalanche he becomes the Brotherhood member with the most development. Originally nothing more than an aggressive thug, he eventually developed a more sympathetic, mature and serious attitude, who helps his team mates like they are brothers, and acts in, a strange sort of way, like a younger version of Magneto. The close romantic relationship between Avalanche and Kitty Pryde, which begins at the beginning of the second season, is a subplot throughout the series. Lance also shares an intense rivalry with Scott Summers, which manifests on several occasions in the series (particularly in the episodes "Survival of the Fittest" and "Joyride"). In the end, he helped fight Apocalypse, reunites with Kitty and is shown – along with his Brotherhood friends – joining a SHIELD-sanctioned unit (a nod to Freedom Force) in the future.

Video games[edit]

  • Avalanche appears as a boss character in X-Men Legends voiced by Peter Lurie. He is part of Magneto's Brotherhood of Mutants and fights the X-Men at The Mount alongside Sabretooth. The Shadow King also had a Dark Avalanche when the X-Men were in the Astral Plane. Avalanche does not appear in the sequel.
  • Avalanche is featured as a boss in the Facebook game Marvel: Avengers Alliance. He later appeared as an unlockable character when the player collects 8 Boombox Lockboxes that contain his eight comic book covers.

Toys and collectibles[edit]

  • An Avalanche 6 inch figure was released in the "X-Men Classics" toy line. The package refers to him as Dominic Petros. He includes a wind-up rockslide base with vibrating action.

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b Marvel Atlas #1
  2. ^ a b X-Men: Manifest Destiny #5
  3. ^ Uncanny X-Men #141–142
  4. ^ Avengers Annual #10
  5. ^ Incredible Hulk #263
  6. ^ Rom #31–32
  7. ^ Uncanny X-Men #177–178
  8. ^ Uncanny X-Men #199
  9. ^ Avengers Annual #15; West Coast Avengers Annual #1
  10. ^ X-Factor #8–10
  11. ^ Uncanny X-Men #223–227
  12. ^ New Mutants #65
  13. ^ X-Factor #30–31
  14. ^ New Mutants #78
  15. ^ New Mutants #80
  16. ^ Marvel Comics Presents #41
  17. ^ Uncanny X-Men #255
  18. ^ Avengers #312
  19. ^ Avengers: Deathtrap, the Vault
  20. ^ New Mutants Annual #7; Uncanny X-Men Annual #15; X-Factor Annual #6
  21. ^ X-Men Annual (2nd volume) #2
  22. ^ X-Men: Legacy #226
  23. ^ Dark Avengers #7
  24. ^ Dark Avengers/Uncanny X-Men: Exodus #1
  25. ^ New Mutants (vol. 3) #14 (2010)
  26. ^ Uncanny X-Men #542
  27. ^ Uncanny Avengers #1
  28. ^ Factor X #1
  29. ^ Marvel Zombies: Dead Days #1
  30. ^ House of M: Avengers #2
  31. ^ Wolverine e os X-Men (Wolverine and the X-Men) Ep. 1 – "Hindsight Pt. I"

External links[edit]