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|First appearance||Strange Tales #147 (Aug 1966)|
|Team affiliations||The Mighty Avengers|
|Abilities||Mastery of magic|
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The character first appeared in the story "From the Nameless Nowhere Comes... Kaluu!" in Strange Tales #147 (August 1966). The first five pages were written by Stan Lee, with Denny O'Neil writing the other half of the story (credited as "Our Vacationin' Sorcerer" and "Our Sorcerer's Apprentice", respectively), and Bill Everett provided all the art.
Fictional character biography
Varnae, the eldest of the true vampires, met with Kaluu and imparted to him knowledge from the primeval compendium of black magic known as the Darkhold. Subsequently, Kaluu set about to make himself ruler of Kamar-Taj. While the Ancient One continued his studies, Kaluu used his sorcery to influence the minds of the people of Kamar-Taj. Eventually, Kaluu and the Ancient One together cast a spell that eliminated disease, poverty, and suffering from Kamar-Taj and granted its people immortality. Shortly thereafter, the people of Kamar-Taj, responding to Kaluu's magical influence on their minds, crowned him as their king. For over a year Kaluu organized the men of Kamar-Taj into an army of conquest. Meanwhile, Kaluu slowly increased his mystic control over the minds of the people of Kamar-Taj so that they become little more than his placid puppets. The Ancient One attempted to warn the people of Kamar-Taj about Kaluu, but Kaluu's magic prevented them from heeding him. Kaluu struck the Ancient One with a magical bolt from behind which paralyzed him. Then Kaluu had his soldiers conquer a neighboring village and reduce it to slavery.
Using black magic to control the people of Kamar-Taj, he waged war against the Ancient One, but he summoned a pestilence that almost wiped out the entire population of Kamar-Taj and forced Kaluu to flee to the dimension of Raggador. He emerged from Raggador five centuries later and attempted to steal the Book of the Vishanti. He was defeated by Doctor Strange and hurled into another dimension in suspended animation.
The forces unleashed in a battle between Doctor Strange and Urthona eventually freed Kaluu from his imprisonment. When he returned from exile he became a businessman and amassed a large fortune. He formed an alliance with the embattled Doctor Strange, and tutored him in the practice of black magic. Alongside Strange, he battled Shuma-Gorath and various other ancient evils. He also witnessed Doctor Strange's defeat of Shuma-Gorath. Kaluu, Strange, Rintrah, and Enitharmon the Weaver, returned to the Earth dimension where he cast a spell to remove the physical and astral pollution from Strange caused by using black magic.
Kaluu plans to live a quiet, enjoyable life, while living off money he made by influencing the stock market.
Powers and abilities
Kaluu has the ability to manipulate magical forces for a vast number of effects, including levitation, teleportation, energy projection, conjuration of small physical objects, physical transformation of objects, and the tapping of extra-dimensional energy by invoking entities or objects of power existing in dimensions tangential to Earth's through the recitation of spells. He has used this skill to render himself immortal. He also has the powers of mesmerism, thought-casting, illusion-casting, and astral projection.
According to the back story of the character, Kaluu is possibly the most powerful living human black magician. Kaluu's magic derives not only from personal, universal and dimensional powers: he has powers gained through the tapping of the life forces of living beings and the manipulation of the environment in certain ways that have destructive side effects.
Kaluu has used mystical means to render himself immortal. He does not age, but he can be killed by external means.
Kaluu is a master of various Asian martial arts, but prefers not to engage in physical combat. He has extensively studied sorcery and possesses vast knowledge of black magical lore.
Kaluu formerly wore an eyepatch covering his left eye, though this eye has since been restored.
- "Strange Tales #147". Grand Comics Database.
- Bill Everett, Denny O'Neil (w), Bill Everett (p). "The Origin of the Ancient One!" Strange Tales 148 (September 1966), Marvel Comics
- Bill Everett, Denny O'Neil (w), Bill Everett (p). "If Kaluu Should Triumph..." Strange Tales 149 (October 1966)
- Bill Everett, Roy Thomas (w), Bill Everett (p). "The Conquest of Kaluu!" Strange Tales 150 (November 1966)
- Strange Tales Vol. 3 #8-10
- Strange Tales Vol. 3 #14-17
- Mighty Avengers Vol. 2 #4
- Captain America and the Mighty Avengers #1