|First appearance||Champions #14 (Jul 1977)|
|Created by||Bill Mantlo and John Byrne|
|Alter ego||Fritz von Meyer|
|Abilities||Capable of mentally manipulating the bees that compose his body|
Swarm (Fritz von Meyer) is a fictional character and supervillain, an enemy of Spider-Man in the Marvel Comics universe. A former Nazi sympathizer, his most notable physical feature is that his entire body is composed of bees.
Publication history 
|This section requires expansion. (December 2012)|
Fictional character biography 
Fritz von Meyer was born in Leipzig, Germany and became one of Hitler's top scientists. Escaping capture after World War II, he became a beekeeper or apiarist in South America, and discovered a colony of mutated bees. Intrigued by their intelligence and passive nature, von Meyer attempted to enslave the queen bee, but failed and the bees devoured him, leaving only his skeleton. The unique qualities of the bees caused his consciousness to be absorbed into them, allowing von Meyer to manipulate the hive to do his will, although some of his skeletal remains are inside the swarm itself. His consciousness merged with the swarm to the extent that they become one being.
After that defeat, Swarm resurfaced to battle Spider-Man, in the first of many fights against him, Spider-Man prevailing against him by dosing his costume in a new type of Raid that hurt the bees if they got too close to him. Swarm lost his/their skeleton in this battle, but returned to fight again (no longer having the skeleton but still possessing von Meyer's consciousness), first teaming with Kraven against Iceman and Firestar, then against Spider-Man, but feedback from a weapon fired by Rhino caused Swarm's bee body to disperse temporarily.
Swarm next appeared when a Super-Collider from Rand Industries was activated and called his/their attention. Swarm decided mankind should be exterminated so insects can rule the world. Doctor Druid convinced Swarm that mankind will exterminate themselves and the age of insects can begin.
Eventually however, Swarm tired of waiting and, after a psychic wave generated by Onslaught disrupted the psychic field that bound him and his bees together, returned to New York, forcing a group of scientists investigating energy fields to help him not only restore his original field, but expand it to grant him control of every bee on Earth. As New York was invaded by bees, Spider-Man tracked the bees to their destination and- taking advantage of the fact that the swarms' instinctive memory of Peter's use of Raid caused them to automatically flinch away from him- infiltrated the building and contacted the scientists. By claiming that the scientists' equipment was having trouble broadcasting a sufficiently powerful signal through the dome of bees, Spider-Man was able to trick Swarm into allowing him to construct a device designed to negate the vibrational frequency that the bees created to allow themselves to fly. With the bees now grounded, Spider-Man subsequently recovered the Queen of Swarm's hive and left her in the care of the authorities, reasoning that without her Swarm wouldn't be a future threat.
Swarm (now back with an internal skeleton) felt that the fall of the criminal organization called Pride allowed access to their former territory, specifically Los Angeles. However, he/they are defeated by the Runaways, protectors of the city, when his/their body of bees' mental link is disrupted by electrical blasts.
He/they regained control over his colony and joins the Chameleon's Exterminators  to kill Spider-Man, now that Peter Parker had revealed his true identity. Swarm attacked Mary Jane Watson, who sprayed Swarm with water while a co-worker smashed Swarm's skeleton, but the bees reformed around it as bodyguards from Tony Stark take him/them away.
Swarm next turned up in Denver, Colorado, having amassed enough bees to become giant-sized. The Thunderbolts face him/them unsuccessfully until Norman Osborn dispatched Venom, who devoured Swarm's bones. Osborn speculated this was, by now, a minor inconvenience that should not prevent Swarm's return.
Next, Swarm turned up in Buenos Aires having his intelligence again. He fought the Mighty Avengers by creating 'avatars' made of bees. Notably, the Avengers roster included Wasp, Stature, and Amadeus Cho (wearing a copy of the Ant-Man helmet). Stature placed an inhibitor collar on the queen bees which caused Swarm's intelligence to somehow disperse.
Powers and abilities 
Swarm is a composite being of hundreds of thousands of bees driven by a human intelligence. He is technically intangible, as his body is merely an aggregate of tiny forms. He can fly through the air and assume any shape and size he desires. Fritz can mentally influence the actions of other bees, the full range of which may extend over hundreds of yards in radius. At first, Swarm seemed capable of only controlling other bees, but he has exhibited the ability to communicate/control other insects as well.
Other versions 
Ultimate Marvel 
In the Ultimate Marvel universe, Swarm was introduced as "Swarm the Insect Queen". She is a Syrian mutant with the power to control insects. She is fully corporeal, but has grey skin and horns, making her resemble the sorceress Margali Szardos. She is a member of the Liberators who invade the United States, killing many, in order to put a stop to perceived American aggression. Like most of her teammates, she was apparently killed when a giant-sized Wasp steps on her.
Recently in Ultimate Comics: Avengers, Swarm was rebuilt with an obedience chip and now serves as a member of the Avengers (led by Gregory Stark and General Nick Fury) under the name of Red-Wasp. A flashback reveals that Red Skull had once attacked a Georgian activist's family. He held the couple's child at gunpoint, forcing the wife to kill her husband to save her child. She does so, only for the Red Skull to throw her infant out a window, and then have her raped by his henchmen. It is revealed later in the issue that Swarm was, in fact, that woman. Also in the issue, Red Skull acknowledges Swarm as Petra Larkov. Petra is allowed her revenge for when the Red Skull is in a dying state in a hospital where he is revealing his real plan to Fury, Petra walks in dressed as nurse and shoots him in the head.
After the Skull's death, Petra continued to serve with the Avengers (specifically the vampire threat, where she confides with her ex-Liberator teammate Perun, who's also added to the Avengers)  until the Avengers were disbanded by S.H.E.I.L.D. after the events of Ultimate Comics: Ultimate Avengers vs New Ultimates. Her current whereabouts are unknown.
Marvel Fairy Tales 
Marvel Adventures 
Swarm recently appeared and fought Spider-Man in Marvel Adventures #38. He/they supposedly wanted to take over the world (or at least kill a few jocks - Flash Thompson included), but it looked like he/they just wanted some ice cream.
In other media 
- Swarm appears in the Spider-Man and His Amazing Friends episode "Swarm" voiced by Al Fann. This version was created when alien energy from a fallen meteorite irradiated a nearby beehive, giving it sentience and the ability to use eye blasts to increase the size of bees and their hive or mutate people into bee drone hybrids. The Swarm was defeated when Spider-Man (who was immune to the mutation due to his pre-existing bug traits), Firestar, and Iceman launched the meteorite back into space. Distancing the bees and hybrids from the meteor's radiation reversed all of The Swarm's effects.
- Swarm will appear in Ultimate Spider-Man. He is a disgruntled employee of Tony Stark who develops and envelops himself in a swarm of self-replicating nanobots, rather than radioactive bees.
- An action figure of Swarm was released in 1997 as part of the Spider-Man: Spider Force toy line. It was molded in a translucent yellow plastic, and featured a removable cape and hood, and snap-on bee armor. This armor could also be assembled to create a "giant" bee accessory.
- Swarm features as a member of the Sinister Six in the new Broadway musical, Spider-Man: Turn Off the Dark played by Gerald Avery.
- Exterminators (Spider-Man foes)
- Champions #14 and 15, 1977
- Spectacular Spider-Man #36 and 37
- Spider-Man Family Amazing Friends #1
- Lethal Foes of Spider-Man #3-4
- Secret Defenders #18
- Secret Defenders #19
- Sensational Spider-Man #9-10
- Runaways vol. 2 #7
- The Punisher War Journal Vol.2 #15
- Thunderbolts #122
- Mighty Avengers #24
- Wolverine and the X-Men #18
- The Ultimates, volume 2, #12
- Ultimate Avengers #5
- Ultimate Avengers #6
- Ultimate Comics: Avengers 3 #5
- C. B. Cebulski (w), Niko Hendrichon (p), Niko Hendrichon (i). "Once Upon A Time..." Marvel Fairy Tales 2 (August, 2007), Marvel Comics
- Swarm at Marvel.com