Thunderer (Marvel Comics)

The Thunderer is a fictional character, a superhero appearing in American comic books published by Timely Comics.

Thunderer (center front) as depicted in his first appearance of Daring Mystery Comics #7
Publication information
PublisherTimely Comics
First appearanceas the Thunderer:
Daring Mystery Comics #7 (Timely, April 1941)
as Black Avenger:
All-Winners Comics #6 (Timely, Fall 1942)
Created byJohn Compton
Carl Burgos
In-story information
Alter egoJerry Carstairs
Notable aliasesBlack Avenger
AbilitiesGood hand to hand combatant
High-impact voice amplification

Publication historyEdit

He first appeared in Daring Mystery Comics #7 (Timely, April 1941) and was created by John Compton and Carl Burgos.

Fictional character biographyEdit

Frustrated that the United States did not seem to be dealing with crime or Nazi saboteurs, radio operator Jerry Carstairs created a costume with a built-in microphone and fought for justice as the Thunderer. In his first recorded appearance, Jerry learned that radio station WWLX was really a front for Nazi Fifth Columnists who were transmitting secret messages hidden in music. Learning that they were targeting his girlfriend Eileen Conroy, a newspaper reporter, foiled their operation. In order to protect his secret identity, Jerry acted like a meek weakling while in his civilian guise.[1] Thunderer later uncovered the machinations of a hideously deformed dwarf named Gore who hated beautiful people so much that he rigged Morse code death traps that killed his victims over the radio. The Thunderer destroyed his operation, and Gore was killed in a house fire caused by faulty wiring in his equipment.[2]

Thunderer's activities were far and few between due to the limitations his position with the FCC provided in giving him leads to criminal or spy activities. The Thunderer briefly changed his name (but not his costume) to the Black Avenger. In the fall of 1942, the FBI caught a Nazi spy that resembled Jerry and convinced him to go undercover to try and expose the spy ring that was sending defense secrets back to Nazi Germany. As the Black Avenger, Jerry managed to round up the Nazis including their leader Kurt Weidner and turn him over to justice[3]

Alongside a number of other heroes, the Thunderer participated in an air drop on a Nazi stronghold.[4]

The Thunderer attended a reunion of World War II costumed heroes.[5]

In 1943, the Black Avenger was among a number of heroes who were slain by the Cosmic Cube-wielding Red Skull and impaled on a massive wall.[6] However, the Cosmic Cube was recovered by Private Paul Anslen who resurrected all the slain heroes who aided the combined efforts of the Invaders and the time displaced New Avengers and Mighty Avengers. When Red Skull was defeated, the heroes used the Cosmic Cube to wipe out the Black Avenger's memories of the event to preserve history.[7]

During the "Last Days" part of the Secret Wars storyline, Thunderer is seen as a resident of Valhalla Villas (a retirement home for ex-heroes and ex-villains in Miami). He was temporarily de-aged during the Incursion between Earth-616 and Earth-1610.[8]

In Marvel Comics #1000, it was reveal that Jerry was a subject in a side project of Project Rebirth, the government project that create Captain America, called Project Thunderer. Thunderer's mask is a magical item called the Eternity Mask, which was created by a group of renegade occultist from Eternity's own substance in the days of King Arthur. When his friend Spirit of '76 as Captain America as killed by Adam II, Thunderer blamed the Scientist Guild, also known as the Three Xs and later Enclave, for their role in Nasland's death as they was responsible for bankrolling Professor Horton to create another android like the Humans Torch as well supply Adam-II's programming with the Three Xs's ideas for the next stage of mankind and leading to the android's madness. Changing his identity to Black Avenger, Carstairs swears to take down the Three Xs. However, Thunderer was killed and the Eternity Mask taken by Enclave. His corpse would be found by Marvel Boy, with a recording to stop the Scientists Guild.

Powers and abilitiesEdit

Thunderer is a good hand-to-hand combatant.

Due to the construction of his costume, Thunderer is capable of deafening people or leveling buildings with his sonic scream.

In other mediaEdit


Thunderer (far left) along with the other five "Forgotten Warriors" as seen in Spider-Man.
  • The Thunderer appeared in the five-part Spider-Man episode "Six Forgotten Warriors", voiced by Hansford Rowe.[citation needed] In this version, the Thunderer's powers are the result of an attempt at recreating the process that empowered Captain America and that special rings were needed to activate them. During World War II, the Thunderer fought alongside Captain America, Black Marvel, Destroyer, Miss America, and Whizzer. After Captain America "sacrificed" his life to stop the Red Skull from activating the Doomsday machine, Thunderer and the others took possession of the keys and retired. In the modern day, the Kingpin led the Insidious Six (consisting of Doctor Octopus, Scorpion, Rhino, Shocker, Vulture, and Chameleon) in trying to gather the keys, and hunted down each of the "Six Forgotten Warriors". The Thunderer was the last one to be located. Ironically, he had stayed close to the base determined to guard it while disguised as a homeless man. Thunderer later joined the others in fighting Kingpin's forces and later Red Skull's forces and then he helped the other American Warriors defeating giant robots controlled by Electro at the UN Building.


  1. ^ Daring Mystery Comics #7
  2. ^ Daring Mystery Comics #8
  3. ^ All-Winners Comics #6
  4. ^ Marvels #1
  5. ^ Captain America #442
  6. ^ Avengers/Invaders #10
  7. ^ Avengers/Invaders #12
  8. ^ Ant-Man: Last Days #1

External linksEdit