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Avalanche (comics)

Avalanche the name of two fictional characters appearing in American comic books published by Marvel Comics. Each character is usually depicted as an enemy of the X-Men.

Avalanche
Avalanche XCorps.jpg
Publication information
PublisherMarvel Comics
First appearanceUncanny X-Men #141 (January 1981)
Created byChris Claremont (writer)
John Byrne (artist)
In-story information
Alter egoDominikos Ioannis Petrakis[1]
SpeciesHuman Mutant
Team affiliationsX-Corps
Freedom Force
Project: Wideawake
Brotherhood of Evil Mutants
Notable aliasesDominic Janos Petros, Jon Bloom, Dominic Szilard, Nick[2]
AbilitiesGeological manipulation via seismic wave generation from his hands.

The Dominikos Petrakis version of Avalanche is a Cretan mutant who possesses the ability to generate seismic waves from his hands that are strong enough to create earthquakes of varying sizes and to disintegrate any substance other than living tissue. He has been a member of the Brotherhood of Mutants and Freedom Force. The animated series X-Men: Evolution portrays him as Lance Alvers, a misguided mutant teenager and romantic love interest of the X-Men's Shadowcat.

Publication historyEdit

Created by writer Chris Claremont and artist/co-writer John Byrne, the Dominikos Petrakis version of Avalanche first appeared in Uncanny X-Men #141 (January 1981).

Fictional character biographyEdit

Dominikos PetrakisEdit

Avalanche's story before Mystique recruits him for the second Brotherhood of Evil Mutants is largely a mystery. It is known, however, that he is an immigrant from the Greek island of Crete. There, he lives a quiet life until Mystique invites him to join her new Brotherhood. During his first public appearance with the Brotherhood, the team unsuccessfully attempts to assassinate Senator Robert Kelly during his hearings and testimony on his belief that mutants pose a mortal threat to humanity. The X-Men arrive to stop the assassination and battle the new Brotherhood.[3] After escaping the fray, Avalanche continues his support of Mutant supremacy via terrorist and criminal activities and battling the Avengers with the Brotherhood.[4]

Avalanche briefly leaves the Brotherhood and attempts to blackmail the state of California into paying him an enormous sum to prevent him from using his power to generate an earthquake. Avalanche fights the Hulk alongside Landslide on this occasion and suffers broken arms when he attempts to use his powers against the Hulk.[5] When he returns to the Brotherhood, together they encounter Rom and Hybrid.[6] The team later battles the X-Men as the "Brotherhood of Evil Mutants" one final time.[7]

After that, The Brotherhood's leader Mystique offered the group's services to the United States government. Their first mission under their new name of Freedom Force was to capture the mutant Magneto on behalf of the federal government.[8] The government then sent Freedom Force to capture the Avengers.[9] While seeking to arrest Rusty Collins, he clashed with X-Factor.[10] Freedom Force then fought the X-Men in Dallas and was present at the X-Men's apparent demise,[11] and battled the New Mutants in Dallas as well.[12] Freedom Force then battled Cyclops and Marvel Girl.[13] Freedom Force again tried to arrest Rusty Collins and battled the New Mutants,[14] but were able to arrest Rusty and Skids as well.[15] They were also dispatched to rescue Senator Robert Kelly from a South American drug syndicate that had kidnapped him, battling the syndicate's superhuman agents in the process.[16] Freedom Force also had a costly battle with the Reavers on Muir Island where a number of members were killed or seriously injured.[17] During the Acts of Vengeance, Avalanche teamed with Blob and Pyro against the Avengers.[18] Avalanche then joined Freedom Force's effort to stop a prison breakout at the Vault.[19] Avalanche then participated in Freedom Force's final mission in Kuwait. He abandoned Blob and Pyro during the battle with Desert Sword to save the seriously injured Crimson Commando.[20]

When Freedom Force was disbanded after the botched mission in the Gulf War, Avalanche continued to work for the government as part of Project: Wideawake, but soon left when he found out that his friend Pyro had contracted the Legacy Virus.[21]

By the time the X-Men establish themselves in San Francisco, Avalanche, going by the alias "Nick", establishes a bar in order to make a living away from crime. When the X-Men moved their headquarters to San Francisco, Petros was frightened that they would eventually come for him for his past crimes. As he was packing in hopes of leaving his new-found life, the X-Men popped in with a friendly warning that they have a truce but will be back if he ever decides to return to a life of crime. As they leave, with his place of business and apartment trashed, Petros looks around, mumbling to himself.[2]

When Norman Osborn starts his war against Mutants in the heart of San Francisco, Gambit sees Avalanche during the riots with Erg and when Ares makes himself known, Avalanche attacks him by causing the earth to rise up under him. Ares then knocks him out by choking him.[22] He is seen one more time, sitting drunk in his own bar together with other mutants. They are angry that humans are trying to prevent new mutant births and Avalanche participates in the riot. He has the unfortunate circumstance of being paired up against Daken, who easily dodges the worried Avalanche's tremor and was about to slice him. He is taken into custody along with several other mutants who participated in the riots.[23] Eventually Avalanche and the other imprisoned mutants are freed by the X-Force and he becomes a resident of Utopia.[24]

While Utopia and all of San Francisco are trapped in an energy dome created by Bastion, and the mutant race face extermination at the hands of Nimrod Sentinels from the future, Avalanche is among many of Utopia's non-X-Men residents who have now taken up fighting alongside their former rivals. He can be seen fighting alongside the X-Men Sunspot, Husk, and Boom-Boom, defending the passage of the Bart Tunnels.[25] As an "X-Man", Avalanche is also called in by Cyclops during the Fear Itself storyline to help them stop Kurrth. Avalanche uses his powers to create a chasm that Kurrth would not cross, but Kurrth creates a psychic bridge for him and his brainwashed followers to cross anyway.[26]

Avalanche is kidnapped by the Red Skull who removed part of his brain, replacing it with a machine that turned Avalanche into a puppet to attack New York City. As Captain America tries to stop him, he claimed that "the inciting act is complete" and jumped to his apparent death.[27]

Lance AlversEdit

A somehow-repowered Mesmero brainwashed the second Avalanche into joining his Brotherhood of Mutants which was secretly funded by anti-mutant activist Lydia Nance. Avalanche's first mission with the Brotherhood of Mutants was to kidnap Mayor Bill de Blaso and held him hostage.[28] The X-Men arrived and defeated the Brotherhood of Mutants who are then arrested by the arriving S.H.I.E.L.D. Agents[29]

As Lydia Nance still had a use for the Brotherhood of Mutants, she orchestrated Mesmero's escape from the Box.[30] Mesmero once again lured Avalanche and the second Pyro into helping him out again. They were to attack a yacht that was owned by the Heritage Initiative at the time of its fundraiser. They group fought the X-Men alongside the NYPD.[31] The Brotherhood of Mutants managed to get away and fall back to their base. When Mesmero states that the Brotherhood of Mutants are still under Lydia Nance's paycheck, Pyro takes his leave since he didn't want to work for an anti-mutant activist. Avalanche then demanded from Mesmero to get Pyro's cut.[32]

Avalanche then joined another new Brotherhood of Mutants, this time led by Joseph, a clone of Magneto. During a battle with the X-Men, Avalanche mocked Magik, prompting her to stab him in the heart with her soulsword. It is unknown if he survived this encounter.[33]

Powers and abilitiesEdit

The Dominikos Petrakis version of Avalanche is a mutant with the superhuman ability to generate powerful seismic waves from his hands, creating highly destructive effects. The waves can cause an inorganic object to shatter or crumble into dust and has in recent years been shown to affect organic matter as well. When directed against large objects like buildings or upon the earth itself, the seismic waves can produce effects similar to those of an earthquake or avalanche within limited areas. Avalanche need not touch an object to affect it; he can direct the waves against it from some distance away. Avalanche himself is immune to the generation of his own vibratory waves. However, if the seismic waves were reflected back at him, he would be injured. Avalanche's power originally had little or no effect on organic tissue, with the reflected vibrations from organic matter ("feedback") injuring him, as when he once tried to attack the Hulk, but lately this has appeared to no longer be the case. As yet there is no known limit to the amount of area upon which Avalanche can use his powers at one time. There is no evidence yet, however, that he could create an earthquake capable of destroying an entire city. Avalanche is a fair hand-to-hand combatant and received unarmed combat training while a member of Freedom Force. Avalanche wears an armored battle suit that gives him enhanced resistance to injury, up to and including protecting him from a land mine. While a member of Freedom Force, he used a two-way radio device for communication with other Freedom Force members.

The Lance Alvers version of Avalanche is also a mutant with the same abilities as the first version except that he can also target organic tissue which the first version was unable to do.

Other versionsEdit

Age of ApocalypseEdit

In the Age of Apocalypse, Avalanche was one of the select mutants that were approached by Sinister and offered a chance to join his Elite Mutant Force. Avalanche, however, refused Sinister's offer, for which he was captured at the Breeding Pens. During an escape attempt, Avalanche was killed and his corpse turned over to the Dark Beast for experimentation.[34]

Marvel ZombiesEdit

In Marvel Zombies: Dead Days, he is seen as a zombie alongside a zombie version of the Freedom Force fighting the suddenly zombified X-Men.[35]

House of MEdit

In the "House of M" reality, Dominic appears as a member of the NYPD strikeforce known as the Brotherhood.[36]

Old Man LoganEdit

In the pages of Old Man Logan, Avalanche was among the villains that attacked the Avengers in Connecticut. After Giant-Man killed Crossbones and Vulture, Avalanche used his powers to open up a hole in the ground and Moloids started crawling over Giant-Man enough for him to fall to the ground.[37]

It was also mentioned that Avalanche was the one who blinded Hawkeye.[38] This was seen in the pages of "Old Man Hawkeye" where he vibrated Hawkeye's skull after he killed Baron Zemo.[39]

In other mediaEdit

TelevisionEdit

  • Avalanche appeared in the X-Men animated series voiced by Rod Coneybeare. He was always accompanied by Pyro and later on, the Blob. He is part of the Brotherhood, which is led by Mystique.
  • In the X-Men: Evolution animated series, Avalanche (voiced by Christopher Grey) has been heavily re-imagined. Here, he is a high school student named Lance Alvers. He is a member of the Brotherhood. Originally nothing more than an aggressive thug, he eventually developed a more sympathetic, mature and serious attitude, who helps his teammates like they are brothers, and acts in a strange sort of way like a younger version of Magneto. The close romantic relationship between Avalanche and Kitty Pryde, which begins at the beginning of the second season, is a subplot throughout the series. Lance also shares an intense rivalry with Scott Summers, which manifests on several occasions in the series (particularly in the episodes "Survival of the Fittest" and "Joyride"). In the end, he helps fight Apocalypse, reunites with Kitty and is shown – along with his Brotherhood friends – joining a SHIELD-sanctioned unit (a nod to Freedom Force) in the future.
  • Avalanche appears in Wolverine and the X-Men, voiced by James Patrick Stuart.[40] He is a member of the Brotherhood of Mutants. Unlike the other televised versions of the character, this adaptation has a strong Greek accent and sports a goatee. He first appears in "Hindsight" Pt. 2 where he and the Brotherhood of Mutants trick the X-Men into attacking the Mutant Response Division.

Video gamesEdit

  • Avalanche appears as a boss character in X-Men Legends voiced by Peter Lurie. He is part of Magneto's Brotherhood of Mutants and fights the X-Men at The Mount alongside Sabretooth. The Shadow King also had a Dark Avalanche when the X-Men were in the Astral Plane.
  • Avalanche is featured as a boss in the Facebook game Marvel: Avengers Alliance. He later appeared as an unlockable character when the player collects 8 Boombox Lockboxes that contain his eight comic book covers.

Toys and collectiblesEdit

  • An Avalanche 6 inch figure was released in the "X-Men Classics" toy line. The package refers to him as Dominic Petros. He includes a wind-up rockslide base with vibrating action.

ReferencesEdit

  1. ^ Marvel Atlas #1
  2. ^ a b X-Men: Manifest Destiny #5
  3. ^ Uncanny X-Men #141–142
  4. ^ Avengers Annual #10
  5. ^ Incredible Hulk #263
  6. ^ Rom #31–32
  7. ^ Uncanny X-Men #177–178
  8. ^ Uncanny X-Men #199
  9. ^ Avengers Annual #15; West Coast Avengers Annual #1
  10. ^ X-Factor #8–10
  11. ^ Uncanny X-Men #223–227
  12. ^ New Mutants #65
  13. ^ X-Factor #30–31
  14. ^ New Mutants #78
  15. ^ New Mutants #80
  16. ^ Marvel Comics Presents #41
  17. ^ Uncanny X-Men #255
  18. ^ Avengers #312
  19. ^ Avengers: Deathtrap, the Vault
  20. ^ New Mutants Annual #7; Uncanny X-Men Annual #15; X-Factor Annual #6
  21. ^ X-Men Annual (2nd volume) #2
  22. ^ X-Men: Legacy #226
  23. ^ Dark Avengers #7
  24. ^ Dark Avengers/Uncanny X-Men: Exodus #1
  25. ^ New Mutants (vol. 3) #14 (2010)
  26. ^ Uncanny X-Men #542
  27. ^ Uncanny Avengers #1
  28. ^ X-Men Gold Vol. 2 #2. Marvel Comics.
  29. ^ X-Men Gold Vol. 2 #3. Marvel Comics.
  30. ^ X-Men Gold Vol. 2 #22. Marvel Comics.
  31. ^ X-Men Gold Vol. 2 #21. Marvel Comics.
  32. ^ X-Men Gold Vol. 2 #22. Marvel Comics
  33. ^ Uncanny X-Men #16 (Apr 2019). Marvel Comics.
  34. ^ Factor X #1. Marvel Comics.
  35. ^ Marvel Zombies: Dead Days #1. Marvel Comics.
  36. ^ House of M: Avengers #2
  37. ^ Old Man Logan Vol. 2 #8. Marvel Comics.
  38. ^ Wolverine Vol. 3 #66. Marvel Comics.
  39. ^ Old Man Hawkeye #11. Marvel Comics.
  40. ^ Wolverine e os X-Men (Wolverine and the X-Men) Ep. 1 – "Hindsight Pt. I"

External linksEdit