Erik the Red (comics)
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|Erik the Red|
Erik the Red
Appearance of 2nd Erik the Red, art by Dave Cockrum
|First appearance||(I) X-Men #51 (as Eric the Red), (II) X-Men #97 (1975)|
|Created by||Arnold Drake
|Alter ego||Scott Summers
Erik Magnus Lehnsherr
|Abilities||Superhuman strength and agility,
Erik the Red is a fictional character appearing in American comic books published by Marvel Comics. The name has been used as cover identity in the Marvel Universe which has been used by three characters: Scott Summers (Cyclops), Davan Shakari, a Shi'ar agent, and Erik Magnus Lehnsherr (Magneto). The identity is named for the Norse colonizer of Greenland, Erik the Red, and all three characters assumed it as a disguise; Shakari is the character that used this identity the longest and is the one most commonly associated with it.
Fictional character biography
The identity of Eric the Red [sic] was actually first used by Cyclops in X-Men #51 by Arnold Drake and Jim Steranko. Cyclops pretended to be a mutant supervillain to infiltrate a group of mutants led by Mesmero and a robot pretending to be Magneto, who had captured the rest of the X-Men. Cyclops' Eric the Red costume included a mask and gloves that redirected his optic blasts so that they were fired from his hands.
The second Erik the Red is Davan Shakari, an alien from the Shi'ar Empire. This version of the character was created by Chris Claremont and Dave Cockrum in X-Men #97 (1975) as a precursor to the original Phoenix Saga storyline.
Davan Shakari did not debut as Erik the Red until years later. D'Ken, the power-hungry ruler of the Shi'ar appointed Davan Shakari as his observer of planet Earth, its people, and its cultures. When rebel leader, Lilandra, attempted to flee to Earth and ally herself with Professor X, Davan Shakari assumed the identity of Erik the Red. Cyclops wondered what the connection was between this Erik and the identity he himself had used, but an answer was never given. Presumably, Davan Shakari used the Erik the Red identity in a strategy to catch the X-Men off guard.
An early foe of Cyclops' second team of X-Men, Erik the Red used his superior Shi'ar technology to restore adulthood to Magneto, who had been de-aged to infancy by Alpha the Ultimate Mutant and mentally dominate reserve X-Men Havok and Polaris. After being defeated by Phoenix and the X-Men, Erik would not appear again for years. Erik apparently died when his Spaceship exploded during a battle with Genis-Vell and X-Treme.
The third person to take the name of Eric the Red was Magneto. He took this identity during the trial of Gambit and has abandoned it since.
Powers and abilities
Davan Shakari has the normal superhuman advantages of a member of his species. This entails enhanced strength, enhanced agility, and hollow bones.
In addition to this he wore a costume that augmented his strength to higher superhuman levels, enabled him to control minds to a limited degree, and fire concussive force blasts from his hands. He had various other advantages, comprising alien technology several centuries more advanced than that found on Earth.
The first and third persons to adopt the "Erik the Red" persona were mutants. Adopting the costume disguised their identities, but did not change or augment their existing powers.
In other media
- Davan Shakari, using the Erik the Red alias, appeared in the X-Men (mostly appearing in the Phoenix Saga episodes) voiced by Lawrence Bayne. His main purpose was to capture Lilandra and the M'Kraan Crystal for D'Ken.
- Footage of Erik the Red's appearances (specifically, the episode "Cry of the Banshee") from the X-Men TV series was used in the Juggernaut Bitch!! Internet parody, in which he was called Ketchup for his red uniform.
- Erik the Red at Marvel Appendix