World's Finest Comics #111 (August 1960)
Teen Titans #56 (April 2008)
France Herron (writer)
Lee Elias (artist)
Sean McKeever (writer)
Eddy Burrows (artist)
|Alter ego||- William Tockman|
Justice League Antarctica
Uses clock-related gadgetry
Absolute time sense
The Clock King is the name of two fictional characters, both of whom are supervillains appearing in American comic books published by DC Comics. The first Clock King was a villain and enemy of Green Arrow, and debuted in World's Finest Comics #111 (August 1960), and was created by France Herron and Lee Elias.
The Clock King made his first live appearance in the 1960s Batman TV series, played by Walter Slezak. The character was later played in the second season of Arrow by Robert Knepper. Knepper’s character also appeared on an episode of The Flash.
- 1 Publication history
- 2 Fictional character biography
- 3 Powers and abilities
- 4 Other versions
- 5 In other media
- 6 References
- 7 External links
The first Clock King was originally an enemy of Green Arrow. He has no superpowers or abilities. He wears a clock mask, a cape, and a blue suit with clock drawings on it.
Fictional character biography
Born William Tockman, the Clock King spends his early years taking care of his invalid sister. During one day, he finds out from a doctor's visit that he himself only has six months to live. Despairing for his sister's future, he watches the timing of a local bank's vault in order to rob it, hoping the money would provide for his sister after he was gone. His caper would have gone successfully, had he not tripped a silent alarm and been caught by the Green Arrow.
While he is incarcerated, his sister dies alone. In further and hideous irony, Tockman discovers that he really is not terminally ill; his doctor had accidentally switched his papers with those of another patient. Infuriated, he escapes, later futilely attempting revenge on both the Green Arrow and the incompetent doctor.
With several other villains, the Clock King becomes a member of the Injustice League, a team of out-of-luck supervillains who, when banding together, become even less successful than they have been in their individual careers. The Injustice League is defeated time and again by the Justice League International, at least when they are not making laughingstocks of themselves. Trying to reform, the members later become the core of the equally laughable hero team Justice League Antarctica. This JLA includes G'Nort, who ends up saving the lives of the entire team. Like his compatriots, Clock King becomes an ardent supporter of Maxwell Lord, partly due to the fact he is the only one willing to hire them. His group even guards Lord when he is incapacitated by a bullet wound. The villains again later reunite as the Injustice League as henchmen of Sonar.
Later, the Clock King leads his own separate team of villains in a mission. They consist of Radiant, Sharpe, Acidia, and Crackle. They are not as well-organized as even the Injustice League. For example, Crackle still lives with his mother and they have to take the bus to their fight. It takes place at a Metropolis toy store. They end up fighting one of the many incarnations of the Teen Titans, the heroes Booster Gold and Firehawk and DEO agent Cameron Chase. An unclear super-effect from Chase ultimately neutralizes Clock King's team and they are all imprisoned. Clock King himself escapes on another bus.
Still later, Clock King and his Injustice League friends are transformed into the new Suicide Squad. They are sent to a remote research facility where a genetic monstrosity is holding its creator hostage. Its main defenses are spawned "children" that could explode. During the mission, most of the team are seemingly killed, including Clock King, who is shot repeatedly in a retreat attempt. He is seen still alive after his brutal wounds but, in the end, Major Disaster believes he is the only one who survives. It turns out Cluemaster, shot in a similar manner as Clock King, survives, albeit with drastic scarring. Multi-Man also survives due to his ability to be reborn with new powers after dying.
Clock King is not seen for a period of time after Infinite Crisis. In an issue of 52, one character decides to kill all the time-travelers, and mentions someone "ending up like Time Commander and Clock Queen."
A new Clock King appears in Teen Titans #56 as the head of a team of villains named the Terror Titans. In an interview with Teen Titans writer Sean McKeever, he described this Clock King as "... Very smart. He sees things differently than others". Although his full name has not been confirmed, Disruptor did refer to him as "Tem" before being killed. His costume is similar to the suit worn by the Clock King seen in Batman: The Animated Series, although with clock faces on the tie and lapel. After his group defeats and captures Kid Devil, Clock King conditions the hero to be sold as a fighter to a group called "The Dark Side Club". Clock King then brings the Titans to his base of operations, a dimension outside of time. After besting Robin, Clock King is stymied by Ravager, who possesses similar precognitive abilities. He offers Ravager a chance to join him, but she refuses. Clock King then removes the Titans from his base and decides to move on to new plans. Ravager ultimately reconsiders his earlier offer. In the Terror Titans miniseries, Clock King takes over the Dark Side Club, and uses it to brainwash young metahumans, turning them into his very own "Martyr Militia". He sends the Militia to attack Los Angeles, for no reason other than to amuse him. Clock King's plans are eventually undone by Miss Martian, who was posing as one of the captured Metahumans, and Ravager, who attacks and defeats him, forcing him to flee his base of operations.
The New 52
In September 2011, The New 52 rebooted DC's continuity. In this new timeline, three different Clock Kings were shown existing:
- Billy Tockman is an African-American crime boss based in Seattle. Tockman owns a nightclub called the Midnight Lounge, and vintage clock repair shop called the Clock King, which he uses as a front for his operations. While Green Arrow is off dealing with The Outsiders, Diggle, along with Naomi Singh and Henry Fyff, talk Tockman into taking down Richard Dragon, to which he agrees. When they meet to take down Dragon, Tockman betrays them, claiming Dragon made a better offer. When Green Arrow returns and faces Dragon, he holds Naomi and Fyff at gunpoint on Dragon's orders and ends up shooting Fyff, then promptly getting beat up and knocked out by Emiko Queen.
- Another Clock King, wearing the original Clock King costume, battles the newest incarnation of the Birds of Prey amped up on Venom.
- Another, bearing an appearance similar to his Animated Series look (but with a black and blue suit and black and yellow glasses), referred to as Bill, tries to rob a store alongside his roommate Sportsmaster. He is stopped by Harley Quinn and Power Girl, but not before teleporting them into another dimension. He is shown to have the ability to rewind time.
In the DC Rebirth relaunch, two Clock Kings are active:
- A temporal anomaly who wears the classic Clock King costume, but with his face showing. This new version feeds on the life force of others to maintain his youth, which led to him preying on African citizens. He is sheltered within the African nation of Buredunia under dictator Matthew Bland. His actions drew the attention of Deathstroke the Terminator, who was assigned by Bland to kill Clock King as revenge for his murders. However, Clock King managed to save his life by revealing that the warlord only hired Deathstroke to kill him after he killed Clock King. Furthermore, Clock King revealed that as a time anomaly, he saw that as a result of Dr Manhattan's manipulation of the timestream led to the rebirth of Deathstroke's ally Wintergreen. With that information, Deathstroke spared Clock King's life.
- A former engineer and drug dealer in a suit, sporting glasses inherited from his grandfather and a tattoo of a clock and arrow on the side of his head. He wired targets to clocks that can kill the wearer. This version would later face Batman. He bragged that he would be able to predict every one of Batman's movements, but was defeated by a hiding Catwoman.
Powers and abilities
- The original Clock King has no metahuman powers or abilities, although he is athletic and extraordinarily smart. He extensively uses clock and time -related gimmicks to devastating effect.
- The second Clock King has the always-active ability to see what is about to happen four seconds or so into the future, allowing him to anticipate an opponent's every move. He is also a technological genius, creating devices such as teleporters, communications jamming equipment, and even an anti-gravity platform, all of them modelled after timepieces.
In Batman '66 Issue 4, the Clock King of the 60's series appears as a secret collaborator to the Mad Hatter's latest scheme. At the end, it's revealed that he is Jervis Tetch's brother Morris Tetch who made much of the Mad Hatter's more advanced weapons and described himself and his brother as both "meticulous obsessives", Jervis loving hats and Morris clocks.
The Batman Adventures
The Clock King also makes an appearance in a 2004 The Batman Adventures comic. In this issue, he finally gets his revenge on Hill by rigging the mayoral election so that it seems that Oswald C. Cobblepot (The Penguin) has won.
Batman: The Brave and the Bold
The Clock King appears in Batman: The Brave and the Bold comic, in "President Batman", where Clock King (along with Killer Croc, Scarecrow and Two-Face) helps Doctor Psycho in his plan, until they are defeated by Wonder Woman and Batman.
Injustice: Gods Among Us
The Clock King makes a brief cameo in Chapter Eight of the Injustice: Gods Among Us comic, visibly shocked by the sudden appearance of Wonder Woman and Flash in the villains only bar called World's End.
In the prequel comic to Injustice 2, Clock King is shown to be a member of this universe's Suicide Squad. After a mysterious villain (disguised as Batman) surprisingly appear and take control of the Squad, he kills the Clock King using the bomb implanted in his neck, considering him useless.
In other media
- In the 1960s Batman TV series, the Clock King was portrayed by Walter Slezak in the season two consecutive episodes, "The Clock King's Crazy Crimes" and "The Clock King Gets Crowned", which ABC transmitted on October 12 and October 13, 1966. The two-parter was written by Batman co-creator Bill Finger and Charles Sinclair and directed by James Neilson. In the episode, the Clock King, disguised as a pop artist, tries to rob a gallery of a time-related surrealist painting. Batman and Robin are stuffed into the bottom of an oversized hourglass, stripped of their utility belts, and left to be drowned in sand as the Clock King plots to filch Bruce Wayne's collection of antique pocket watches, only for the duo to escape the trap later. Later in the episode, he starts his masterplan, to steal the atomic-powered Cesium clock. As the Clock King, Slezak wore a black cape and a top-hat with a clock inside it. He had many weapons such as "Super Slick Watch Oil", "Knock Out Gas", and "Super Sonic Sound".
- The William Tockman version of Clock King is featured in multiple television series set in the Arrowverse, portrayed by Robert Knepper.
- The character made his debut in Arrow. In the second season episode "Time of Death", the Clock King masterminds the theft of a hacking device that could be used to break into bank vaults and computer systems. It is revealed his motives are to raise money for medical treatment for his dying sister. He hacks into Felicity Smoak's computer system and disables it, causing her to physically get involved in the efforts to capture him. Aiming for the Canary, Clock King ends up shooting Felicity after she pushes Canary out of the way. Felicity then defeats him by hacking into his cell phone and making it explode.
- The Clock King returns in The Flash. In the episode "Power Outage", William Tockman is being escorted through the Central City police station, having been transferred for unspecified reasons. He subsequently takes advantage of a citywide blackout triggered by new villain Blackout- during which he also temporarily negates the Flash's powers- to take those in the police station hostage, including Joe West and his daughter Iris, but Iris manages to turn the tables on him when she is able to grab Eddie's gun from a hidden ankle holster before being taken as a hostage. She is shown shooting Tockman, who is wounded and once again arrested before Barry regains his powers and arrives to help.
- In Batman: The Animated Series, the Clock King is recreated as Temple Fugate (the name being a play on the Latin phrase tempus fugit, meaning "time flies") who first appears in the episode "The Clock King" and later returns in the episode "Time Out of Joint" voiced by Alan Rachins. In both appearances, the Clock King commonly dresses in a three-piece suit and bowler hat, with a pocket watch and glasses resembling clock faces. In his debut episode "The Clock King," Temple Fugate is a head of a time and motion study consulting company that has been fined $20 million (for an unspecified reason) in court, but is now appealing against it. Fugate is obsessed with time and punctuality; his every waking moment is pre-planned on a "to do" list broken down into precise blocks. Future Gotham mayor Hamilton Hill convinces Fugate to break his schedule and take his coffee break at a slightly later time. However, due to a string of terrible luck, Fugate shows up late for his court appointment, loses his appeal and goes bankrupt as a result. Fugate later learns that Hill's firm represented the plaintiff for the case Fugate was late for, and swears revenge on Hill for making him late, even though Hill personally had nothing to do with the case. Seven years later, Fugate becomes the Clock King and dedicates his life to destroying Hill. After publicly shaming Hill, Fugate has a confrontation with Batman inside a clock tower, and falls to his apparent death when the mechanisms are damaged. He returns in "Time Out of Joint," once again vowing revenge on Hill. For this time, Fugate is aided by a device that allows him to manipulate time in the blink of an eye, stolen from a secluded scientist, which he uses to plant a bomb outside a courthouse that Hill is to inaugurate. His plan is foiled by Batman and Robin, who catch Fugate and send him to Arkham Asylum.
- Alan Rachins reprised his role as The Clock King (Fugate) in the Justice League Unlimited episode "Task Force X". He has been recruited by Project Cadmus as part of the Suicide Squad to coordinate the mission and its timing is largely down to the second, except for a few minutes Fugate allotted for contingencies in the field. The timing for the plan was so important that the members are ordered to go on without a teammate if they are even one second late.
- In The Batman, a character named Francis Gray voiced by Dave Foley is very similar to the Clock King.
- The William Tockman version of Clock King appears in the Batman: The Brave and the Bold episode "Rise of the Blue Beetle!" voiced by Dee Bradley Baker with a German accent. Like his original version in the comics, he possesses many clock-themed weapons and gadgets, and wears a modified version of his original costume. He is shown to resemble the Walter Slezak version of the character underneath his mask. To keep with the clock theme, he has two henchmen named Tick and Tock. The Clock King is defeated by Batman and Green Arrow after they escape his trap. He later appears in "Day of the Dark Knight!", trying to escape from Iron Heights Penitentiary, but was thwarted by Batman and Green Arrow. A heroic version of Clock King appears in "Deep Cover for Batman!", but is taken down by the Injustice Syndicate. Clock King joins forces with Owlman and an army of villains in "Game Over for Owlman!" He also and briefly appears in "Mayhem of The Music Meister!", having teamed up with Black Manta and Gorilla Grodd to hijack a communications satellite before falling victim to the title villain's hypnotic powers. In "Aquaman's Outrageous Adventure!", Aquaman helps Green Arrow fight the Clock King. When they pursue him to a nearby store and Clock King threatens a woman, Aquaman contacts the lobsters in a nearby tank and has them attack Clock King.
- The 1960s TV series version of Clock King appears in Batman: Return of the Caped Crusaders. He along with the other supervillains team up with Robin and Catwoman in order to stop a group of cloned rogue Batmen.
- The William Tockman version of Clock King appears in The Lego Batman Movie.
- The William Tockman version of Clock King is a boss in Batman: The Brave and the Bold – The Videogame, voiced by Dee Bradley Baker. In the Wii version, he is hired by Gentleman Ghost to lure Batman to London, England by capturing Hawkman and threatening to blow up Big Ben. In the DS version, he and Morgaine le Fey team up on Dinosaur Island but are defeated by Batman and the Red Tornado.
- The William Tockman version of Clock King is referenced in Batman: Arkham Knight, on Chinatown, there is a store called "Tockman's Antiques".
- The William Tockman version of Clock King appears as a playable character in Lego DC Super-Villains, voiced by Dee Bradley Baker, reprising his role from Batman: The Brave and the Bold.
In February 2009, Mattel released an action figure from the Batman: The Animated Series/Justice League Unlimited incarnation of Clock King in the Justice League Unlimited toyline in a Matty Collector exclusive four pack along with Bane, Harley Quinn, and the Scarecrow.
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- The Unofficial Guide to the DC Universe's biography for the Clock King
- The DC Database's article on the Clock King's debut
- Clock King on DC Database, an external wiki, a DC Comics wiki
- Stupid Villain Showcase Satirical analysis of the first Clock King by Seanbaby
- Clock King on the Batman: The Animated Series official page