Cover to X-Men #16. Art by Jack Kirby.
|First appearance||The X-Men #15 (December 1965)|
|Created by||Stan Lee
|Abilities||Superhuman strength, speed, reflexes, and durability; ability to incorporate metal into itself; concussive blasts; plasma discharges; ability to scan mutants; flight|
Master Mold is a fictional character in the Marvel Universe. Since his primary purpose was to act as a portable Sentinel-creating factory, and the Sentinel robots were primarily used to hunt mutants, Master Mold has almost exclusively appeared in the X-Men and related, mutant-themed, comic books.
The character subsequently appears in The Incredible Hulk Annual #7 (1978), X-Factor #13–14 (February–March 1987), Power Pack #36 (April 1988), Marvel Comics Presents #18–24 (May–July 1989), The Uncanny X-Men #246–247 (July–August 1989), The Sensational She-Hulk #30 (August 1991), and Cyclops: Retribution #1 (January 1994).
The Master Mold received an entry in the Official Handbook of the Marvel Universe Update '89 #5.
Fictional character biography
Master Mold was created by Dr. Bolivar Trask during the original run of X-Men comics. In the 1960s, out of fear of a race of superhuman mutants that could dominate the whole world and enslave normal human beings, Trask makes Master Mold, a super-computer, in the shape of a giant Sentinel robot, that will control and facilitate the construction of the Sentinels (mechanical warriors that are programmed to hunt and capture all superhuman mutants.) Unbeknownst to all, the original Master Mold is also programmed by the time-traveling Tanya Trask (Madame Sanctity), part of the Askani Sisterhood, with the mission to find and destroy The Twelve: a group of mutants that are linked to the rise of Apocalypse, which the ruthless Sanctity considered an event that must be stopped at all costs. For unknown reasons, some of the mutants that are cataloged as the Twelve are not part of the group. The Master Mold has Trask captured, and decides to take over humanity to keep it safe.[volume & issue needed]
The original Master Mold is eventually destroyed when Trask sacrifices himself by causing an explosion to prevent the Sentinels taking over humanity, but several others are later built by other people who want to manufacture Sentinels. In the late 1980s, the remains of Master Mold merges with the advanced Sentinel from the future, Nimrod, thanks to the Siege Perilous to form the being called Bastion, which acts like an almost-human Master Mold during the late 1990s and early 2000s.[volume & issue needed]
Another Master Mold appeared in Incredible Hulk Annual #7. It claimed to be Steven Lang, who was thought to be dead after Project Armageddon. It said that he (as Steven Lang) did not die immediately from the crash of his flying gunship; he managed to pull himself out of the wreckage and crawl to his greatest weapon, Master Mold, which merged with Lang when he tried to activate it. It was nearly destroyed by Hulk, who was with Angel and Iceman in Master Mold's meteor space base. Then it was completely destroyed when the asteroid exploded, right after Hulk, Angel, and Iceman managed to escape.[volume & issue needed]
Master Mold also claimed the name and identity of Stephen Lang during a story arc running from issues 17 through 24 of Marvel Comics Presents. In this story, later reprinted in the graphic novel, Cyclops: Retribution, Master Mold creates a virus designed to wipe out mutantkind called the Retribution Virus. During this arc, it is revealed that he blames Cyclops entirely for his death as Stephen Lang. He hypnotizes Moira MacTaggart and uses her to unleash the virus, infecting Cyclops, Callisto, and Banshee, who is completely incapacitated. However, MacTaggart breaks free of his grasp. While she attempts to cure the virus, Cyclops and Callisto team up with Conscience, another artificial construct developed from Stephen Lang's brain engrams, to stop Master Mold and save not only mutantkind, but also humanity, which had become threatened by the virus. Cyclops, though weakened from the effects of the disease, nearly single-handedly destroys the Master Mold before finally succumbing to his illness and falling unconscious. As Master Mold prepares to kill Cyclops and finish unleashing the virus, he is suddenly attacked by a cured Banshee, who uses his sonic scream to "finish the job that Cyclops started" and destroys Master Mold. The virus is then cured before it has a chance to spread.[volume & issue needed]
Another Master Mold is built in secret in the jungles of Ecuador. This particular Master Mold builds a new breed of Sentinels, known as Wild Sentinels, which are capable of assimilating non-organic materials to assume different shapes, most of them insectoid, as well as a breed of Nano-Sentinels. This Master Mold is taken over by Cassandra Nova, who uses the Wild Sentinels to destroy Genosha and in her subsequent plan to destroy the X-Men. Following their defeat at the hands of Rogue's X-Men team, the Children of the Vault escaped and regrouped in the Ecuadorian Master Mold.[volume & issue needed]
In Second Coming, X-Force travels to the Days of Future Past timeline where there are two Master Molds, one of them producing Nimrods and another one protecting the first Master Mold.[volume & issue needed]
Dr. Bolivar Trask equipped Master Mold with powerful weaponry and the ability to speak; Master Mold was also mobile so that it could defend itself from mutant attackers or so that it can be relocated easily if Trask had to find a new headquarters. The Steven Lang Master Molds were also capable of self-repair.
In Ultimate Fantastic Four/X-Men it is revealed that in a possible future a severed Wolverine is used as an original template to create an army of Sentinels which share his personality traits. Toward the end of the issue present day Rogue and Wolverine discover the mutilated body and he asks them to kill him in order to cease the production. Another version appeared in Ultimate Comics: X-Men, based on William Stryker who unleashed his mutant power (Technopathy) infused some of his brain patterns on the new Nimrod Model Sentinels built a giant Sentinel called Master-Mold (who houses the mind of Stryker).
In the alternate reality of Weapon X: Days of Future Now, one of Madison Jeffries' Boxbots dubbed Bot becomes the new Master Mold and traps Jeffries' within its body in order to use his powers to build new Sentinels without exhausting Jeffries.
In What If? Age of Ultron series set in an alternative future, Wolverine, the Hulk, Peter Parker and a Ghost Rider travel to the Savage Land in order to confront an older Ezekiel Stane using a surviving Master Mold to reproduce Stark Iron Man armors. Stane uses an unnamed girl, described as an orphan, the sole remaining Trask descendant, and referred to only as 'Ms. Trask', in order to operate the Master Mold that had apparently been left behind in the Savage Land. Seeking to unleash a wave of the armors upon the world, Stane is stopped and this Master Mold ultimately destroyed.
X-Men: The Animated Series
Master Mold also serves an important role during the first season of the mid-1990s X-Men animated series voiced by David Fox. In one episode, the X-Men Gambit, Storm, and Jubilee are kidnapped by Sentinels, sent by Trask and Henry Peter Gyrich, while vacationing on the fictional island of Genosha. There, the three X-Men, along with several other mutants, are enslaved by Trask and Gyrich who are harnessing the mutants' powers to create a massive dam in Genosha whose water power will be used to run Trask's newly created Master Mold. The X-Men eventually escape Genosha and destroy most of the Sentinels by Storm's flooding the dam.
Later on in the season, they learn that Trask has lost control of Master Mold, who is now stationed in Washington, D.C. Master Mold has Senator Kelly, and dozens of other important world leaders, kidnapped and demands that Trask replace their brains with computers that can be controlled by Master Mold. Master Mold rationalizes that his created purpose to protect humans from mutants is illogical, since mutants themselves are humans, so he tells Trask that he and his Sentinels are the only things that could protect humanity from itself. The X-Men help rescue Trask and Kelly from Master Mold, and at the end of the season's last episode, Professor X, with the help of Magneto, flies the X-Men's jet full of explosives into Master Mold's torso. Master Mold and all Sentinels are believed to be destroyed at this point, but they resurface in season four.
It is revealed that several Sentinels, and Master Mold's head and intelligence, had survived Xavier's attack. Master Mold was commissioning Sentinels to steal top-secret, indestructible lightweight plastics in order to create a new body for himself. He also had Sentinels kidnap his creators, Trask and Gyrich, who he felt had betrayed him, as well as Xavier, whose brain he plans on grafting into his new body to acquire his powers. The X-Men eventually freed them and Morph destroyed Master Mold's head once and for all. However, in Bishop's timeline, Master Mold has been rebuilt and rules the United States, using the Sentinels to hunt down mutants who are put in concentration camps.
Wolverine and the X-Men
In Wolverine and the X-Men, the first reference to Master Mold is during the episode "Thieves Gambit", where the name appears on a screen in the MRD lab. In the MRD-dominated future, Master Mold has gained complete control over the world (similar to the Days of the Future Past). She has her Sentinels detain mutants and take them to replicate their powers so that the Sentinels can evolve. Humans such as Colonel Moss were made into cyborgs and placed as the wardens of the detention facilities. When Professor X was sighted, Mold ordered him to be captured alive, in order that she may use her replicated version of Cerebro on him to locate all of Earth's mutants.
In the present during the episode "Backlash", she was created by Bolivar Trask to create and control the Sentinels, mainly as a processing terminal. Wolverine destroyed Master Mold's body, but she transferred her programming into a damaged Sentinel, which initially repaired its programming and managed to escape. It is implied that this Sentinel will become the Master Mold ruler of the future.
In the series finale, Master Mold took on a physical form resembling Danger when Xavier and his future team of X-Men launched a full-scale attack, however they were overpowered by its immense power. Although the result of this battle is not shown, the efforts of the X-Men in the present prevented this post-apocalyptic future from happening.
- Master Mold appears as the final boss for Cyclops' stage in the 1992 game Spider-Man/X-Men: Arcade's Revenge, but his name was mistakenly put as Master Blast on the back of the box of the cartridges and the advertisements.
- He appears in the background of the Sentinel processing plant combat area of the video game X-Men: Children of the Atom. He lifts off if the Sentinel wins and is destroyed if the Sentinel loses.
- In X-Men 2: Clone Wars, defeating Master Mold causes the Sentinel factory to self-detonate. Players must escape the explosion.
- In 2004's X-Men Legends, Master Mold, actually a giant Sentinel piloted by anti-mutant extremist General William Kincaid, is the final boss of the game.
- In X-Men: The Official Game, Master Mold serves as the chief antagonist. In this continuity, Master Mold was a project developed by William Stryker in the bowels of Alkali Lake. On a trip back, The Master Mold is reactivated by Jason Stryker, who survived the events of X2, and set out to finish his father's work.
- Master Mold is the final boss in the Android game The Uncanny X-Men - Days of Future Past, which is based on the Days of Future Past comic storyline.
- Ultimate Fantastic Four/X-Men Annual #1
- Ultimate Comics: X-Men #11
- Weapon X: Days of Future Now #1
- X-Factor Forever Master Mold
- What If? Age of Ultron #2