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Cover of Web of Spider-Man #30 (Sep. 1987). Art by Steve Geiger.
|First appearance||The Amazing Spider-Man #83 (April 1970)|
|Created by||Stan Lee (writer)|
John Romita Sr. (artist)
|Alter ego||Richard Fisk|
|Notable aliases||The Schemer, The Rose, The Blood Rose|
|Abilities||Good martial artist|
Carries a handgun and a variety of mini-grenades
Wears a bulletproof suit
Richard Fisk is a fictional character, a criminal appearing in American comic books published by Marvel Comics. The character first appears in The Amazing Spider-Man #83 (April 1970) and was created by Stan Lee and John Romita Sr. He is the son of the Kingpin (Wilson Fisk) and Vanessa Fisk. Although he was originally a villain, he became an antihero.
The character Richard Fisk first appears as The Schemer in The Amazing Spider-Man #83 (April 1970), created by Stan Lee and John Romita Sr. He first appeared as The Rose in The Amazing Spider-Man #253 (June 1984), but was not revealed as the Rose until The Amazing Spider-Man #286 (March 1987).
Fictional character biography
Richard Fisk grew up as a child of privilege, believing that his father Wilson Fisk was a respectable and honorable businessman. Wilson was sometimes abusive to Richard, but Richard still loved him. At one point he and his childhood friend Samuel Silke saw Wilson roughing up someone. It was when he was attending a prestigious college in Switzerland that he discovered that his father was, in reality, the Kingpin of Crime. Realizing the luxuries of his youth had been financed by a criminal empire, Richard was distraught and vowed to make atonement for his father's crimes. When his parents received word that Richard had perished in a skiing accident, they suspected that it was really a suicide after Richard learned the truth of his father's identity. Heartbroken and furious that his son could have acted so spinelessly, the Kingpin sunk into a spell of depression.[volume & issue needed]
Not long afterward, a new gang emerged in New York, led by a mysterious figure calling himself the Schemer. Unlike most gangs in New York, the Schemer's organization seemed bent solely on dismantling the Kingpin's empire. After a series of confrontations, the Kingpin and the Schemer finally met face to face. It was then that the Schemer revealed that his face was really a mask, and that his true face was that of Richard Fisk. Richard explained that he had faked his death in the Alps and was striking back at his father using his own money. This final shock was too much for the Kingpin to bear, and he collapsed into catatonia. This finally made Richard realize how much he had hurt his father, and he set off to find a way to cure his comatose state. Richard joined the international terrorist group HYDRA, becoming a leader of the Nevada fragment of HYDRA and eventually rising to the rank of Supreme Hydra. Now with HYDRA's expansive medical resources at his disposal, Richard was able to return his father to full health. The Kingpin, reconciled with his son, proved that he was back to normal by clandestinely taking over as ruler of HYDRA. However, it was soon revealed that the true leader of HYDRA was the Nazi supervillain the Red Skull, and the Fisks had to team up with Captain America and the Falcon to stop the mad dictator. Richard was critically wounded in the final battle, and the Kingpin had his son placed in suspended animation, finally curing him by siphoning some life force from Spider-Man.
Several years later, Richard joined his father's organization, calling himself the Rose, a crime lord under the Kingpin's control. However, this was all a ruse to undermine the Kingpin's empire from within. Aiding Richard in this scheme were his good friend Alfredo Morelli and Ned Leeds, who was brainwashed to act as the supervillain the Hobgoblin. However, the Rose's subterfuge resulted in an explosive gang war that tore New York City apart. During a shoot-out Richard shot and killed a police officer, an act that became a turning point for him - no longer could he consider himself morally superior to his father. After Leeds' death and the end of the gang war, Richard resigned himself to his birthright and rejoined the Kingpin's organization as himself. However, the desire to overthrow his father once again arose, and Richard and Alfredo plotted to make the Kingpin think that Richard was ready to inherit his father's position. Alfredo had plastic surgery to make himself look just like Richard (since he had more combat experience), and slowly began climbing the ladder of power. However, when the Kingpin was overthrown by the combined forces of Daredevil and HYDRA, Alfredo betrayed his old friend by maintaining that he was truly Richard, and took over as the new Kingpin. Richard then became Blood Rose, a Punisher-like vigilante, and began gunning down criminals in a bloody purge of the city. The Blood Rose even shot and wounded Alfredo, who later returned under the alias of Gauntlet, although he was ultimately defeated by NightWatch and incarcerated. Finally caught by Spider-Man and arrested, Richard entered the Witness Protection Program.
Years later, Wilson Fisk once again regained the mantle of the Kingpin, and Richard re-emerged to public life and rejoined the Kingpin's organization, once again vowing to never again attempt to overthrow his father. However, upon meeting his old childhood friend, the ambitious enforcer Silke, Richard thought that he at last had found the perfect way to make his father pay for his crimes. Silke's assassination attempt nearly did succeed, stabbing and seriously wounding the Kingpin (already blinded from an earlier attempt on his life). However, Richard did not count on the tenacity of his mother Vanessa. Vanessa quickly made a startling counterstrike, eliminating the rebellion and selling her husband's territory so he could travel to Europe and recover. Richard cornered her, insisting that by getting rid of the Kingpin they could be free to have a new life, but Vanessa coldly shot her son dead, eliminating him as a threat once and for all.
Powers and abilities
Richard Fisk has no superhuman powers, however he is trained in the use of guns and has some martial arts training. He is highly intelligent and also has a number of criminal contacts. As the Rose he wears a bulletproof three-piece suit. He always carries a handgun and often a variety of mini-grenades as well.
Another version of Richard Fisk appeared in Punisher MAX's first story arc called "Kingpin". Here, he is depicted as an eight-year-old child rather than a young adult, and his death is caused by his father's takeover of the mob. During his final confrontation with Fisk, mob boss Rigoletto takes Richard hostage and threatens to kill him but Fisk, showing no concern for his son's fate, stands idly by as Rigoletto slits the boy's throat. Fisk later reflects that he had always thought that he was trying to advance his criminal career for his son's sake, while in reality it was only for himself. Richard's fate causes Vanessa Fisk to plot the downfall of her estranged husband.
In other media
- Richard Fisk appeared in Spider-Man: The Animated Series, voiced by Nick Jameson. This version is loyal to his father and heads a front company called Fisktronics. In the two-part "Framed" and "The Man Without Fear", Peter Parker was hired to work for Richard at Fisktronics by Wilson Fisk. Richard frames Parker for selling government secrets with the Chameleon's help. Spider-Man and Daredevil successfully team up to clear Parker's name, which results in Fisk's arrest and conviction, in part due to his father's machinations. In "Guilty", Richard teams up with Tombstone to frame Robbie Robertson. When Robbie is in Ryker's Island, Robbie ended up as cellmates of Richard and Tombstone. After Spider-Man and J. Jonah Jameson prove Robbie's innocence, Spider-Man rescued Robbie and prevented Richard and Tombstone from escaping by helicopter. In "The Prowler", Fisk makes his final appearance in a flashback when he's saved by Hobie Brown which enables Wilson to have a hot-shot lawyer secure Brown's release.
- Richard Fisk briefly appears in Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse. This version grew up not knowing of Wilson Fisk's criminal behavior. When he and Vanessa Fisk witness Wilson battling Spider-Man, they run away in terror. Vanessa and Richard are seen driving when they're hit by an oncoming truck and are presumably killed. This motivates Wilson to create a particle accelerator in order to find alternate versions of his family in other universes.
- The Amazing Spider-Man #286
- Daredevil #29
- The Amazing Spider-Man #83
- The Amazing Spider-Man #253-286
- Daredevil vol. 2 #31
- PunisherMax #1-6
- Richard Fisk at the Marvel Universe wiki