Demolition Man (comics)

Demolition Man (comics)
Demolition Man
Publication information
Publisher Marvel Comics
First appearance (as Dennis Dunphy) The Thing #28 (October, 1985)
(as Demolition-Man) Captain America #328 (April 1987)
Created by Mike Carlin and Ron Wilson
In-story information
Alter ego Dennis Dunphy
Team affiliations Avengers
Night People
Inuit tribe
Unlimited Class Wrestling Federation
US Military (unknown what service branch)
Notable aliases D-Man, Demolition Dunphy
Abilities Superhuman strength, endurance and resistance to injury

Demolition Man (Dennis Dunphy), also known as D-Man, is a fictional character in the Marvel Comics Universe.


Publication history

Dennis Dunphy first appeared in The Thing #28 (October, 1985), written by Mike Carlin and illustrated by Ron Wilson. He first appeared as Demolition-Man in Captain America #328 (April 1987).

Fictional character biography

Dennis Dunphy was born in Lincoln, Nebraska. Dennis becomes an aspiring athlete who receives the strength augmentation treatments offered by Power Broker, Inc. Finding himself too strong now for normal sports, he becomes a professional wrestler and member of the Unlimited Class Wrestling Federation (UCWF) along with other superheroes and supervillains such as the Beyonder, the Thing, and Screaming Mimi. He refuses to throw a fight with the Thing, and was defeated.[2] He was later mentally compelled by the Puppet Master to attack the Thing.[3] Dunphy refuses the Power Broker's order to help kill Ms. Marvel. He revealed his addiction to the Power Broker's drug to the Thing, and went through a painful withdrawal when the Power Broker cut off his drug supply.[4]

After the fall of the UCWF, Dunphy becomes the Demolition Man and teams up with Captain America to investigate Power Broker, Inc. His costume is intentionally designed so the body of it is a duplicate of Daredevil's first costume, and the hood is a knock-off of Wolverine's. He is successful in rescuing Captain America from Karl Malus and helping Captain America catch him.[5] Dunphy is captured by the Power Broker and subjected to further treatments which augment his strength further but damage his heart. While under the influence of the stimulant, he goes mad and attacks Captain America. Dunphy suffers a heart attack, and his second augmentation is reversed and he is hospitalized.[6] Dunphy takes a step back from superhero activity to take over Captain America's hotline.

Soon after this, Steve Rogers is stripped of his Captain America costume by the Commission on Superhuman Activities (CSA) and goes missing. Demolition Man joins Falcon, Nomad, and Vagabond in searching for Rogers. They discover Rogers, who had renamed himself simply "The Captain", and they all become a short-lived informal team. They defeat the Serpent Squad in their first outing.[7] D-Man aids the Captain, Falcon, and Nomad against Famine.[8] D-Man is nearly killed in battle by Titania.[9] He begins teaching Vagabond hand-to-hand combat, but is attacked by a jealous Nomad. He fights Anaconda and Slither of the Serpent Society.[10] He is attacked and poisoned by Viper, and mistakenly fights Battle Star. Dunphy is arrested by the CSA and held for questioning about the Captain's activities.[11]

When Dennis is finally released by the CSA, he seeks out the Captain, discovering that not only has his team disbanded, but that the East Coast Avengers team have also just disbanded and that the Captain is seeking new members. The Captain inducts Demolition Man as the first of his new Avengers and they almost immediately leave on a mission at the request of Battlestar. Battlestar's partner is John Walker, Captain America's replacement, who has been captured by Flag-Smasher and his group ULTIMATUM. While Battlestar and the Captain investigate ULTIMATUM's Arctic base, Demolition Man is left with their plane. During the fight, the Captain discovers that Flag-Smasher's base contains a doomsday weapon (an electromagnetic pulse generator), and he orders Dunphy to set the plane on course to crash into the base and then bail out. Dennis sets course, but then sees an enemy agent land on the plane. Dunphy elects to stay on the plane to ensure that it connects. The plane explodes apparently with Dunphy in it, and Captain America is unable to find any trace of him.[12]


In a later adventure with Jack Frost, Cap sees what he believes to be Dunphy's body frozen in suspended animation in ice near the North Magnetic Pole in the Arctic. However, he is unable to free him at that time.[13] Demolition Man had survived the explosion, but suffered wounds that rendered him mute and in a stupor, and is discovered living among Eskimos. During a backup story to "Operation: Galactic Storm", he is rescued by U.S. Agent and the Falcon and recovers under Avengers' care.[14] In time he becomes a hero of a subterranean group of homeless people called the Zero People. Dennis appears when the Avengers are attacked by Morgan LeFay's forces. His inattention to hygiene causes many to sit far away from him.[15]

It is later established that Dunphy has become delusional and mentally unstable.[16] His intentions remain pure, but he has begun to believe that a "Cosmic Gamemaster" has asked him to retrieve the seven Infinity Gems, which D-Man carries out by stealing common jewelry. At Ben Urich's request, D-Man's hero Daredevil comes into the sewers and persuades Dennis to get some help.[17]

Civil War/The Initiative

In Civil War: War Crimes, an unnamed newspaper carries the headline "D-Parted: D-Man On The Run After Whereabouts Revealed By Anonymous Tip."

Dennis is being considered as a "potential recruit" for the Initiative program, according to Civil War: Battle Damage Report.[18]

Dark Reign

D-Man has been shown to be serving in the U.S. military in his civilian identity and covertly in his Demolition Man costume. For a while, he inspires several of his fellow soldiers to operate covertly in costumes as well, but he put a stop to that out of concern for their military careers. He continues operating by himself. How he recovered from the brain damage/mental instability he had been suffering from is unknown at this point.[19]

Age of Heroes

In a one-page strip in I Am An Avenger #2, D-man attends a picnic at Avengers Mansion and competes in a pie-eating contest, besting The Thing, Protector, and Valkyrie.[20]

D-Man makes an appearance in New Avengers #7, while various heroes are being interviewed to be a nanny for Luke Cage and Jessica Jones. He appears to be spontaneously weeping and his only lines are "I am so lonely...", "I think I came off desperate before--" and "Does Captain America ever talk about me?". When Jessica Jones says her mind is made up on a nanny, Cage quips "D-Man it is." to which she responds "Cute."[21]


D-Man is set to join Wonder Man's team of Revengers in the New Avengers 2011 Annual.[22]

Powers and abilities

Augmentation of Dennis Dunphy's physical attributes by Dr. Karl Malus on behalf of the Power Broker increased his physical strength, stamina, and durability to superhuman levels. Dunphy possesses superhuman strength sufficient to enable him to lift at least 15 tons. He was addicted to a drug supplied by the Power Broker, but after his drug supply was cut off, his superhuman strength decreased to its current level.[23]

He has a heart condition, increasing his vulnerability to excessive exertion.

Dennis is a skilled aircraft pilot. He is also an excellent hand-to-hand combatant, especially in wrestling, and received further training from Captain America.

Other versions

Queen's Vengeance

When Morgan le Fay usurps the Scarlet Witch's powers and remakes the world in Avengers vol. 3, all of the Avengers members are remade into medieval versions possessing the same powers. In this reality, Demolition Man is renamed Serf.


  1. ^ New Avengers Annual vol. 2 #1 (2011)
  2. ^ Thing #28 (October 1985).
  3. ^ Thing #34 (April 1986).
  4. ^ Thing #35 (May 1986).
  5. ^ Captain America #328 (April 1987).
  6. ^ Captain America #330-331 (June–July 1987).
  7. ^ Captain America #336-337 (Dec. 1987–Jan. 1988).
  8. ^ Captain America #339 (March 1988).
  9. ^ Captain America #340 (April 1988).
  10. ^ Captain America #342 (June 1988).
  11. ^ Captain America #344 (August 1988).
  12. ^ Mark Gruenwald (w), Al Milgrom (i). "Icecap" Captain America 349 (January 1989), Marvel Comics
  13. ^ Captain America #384
  14. ^ Captain America #400-401 (May–June 1992).
  15. ^ Avengers Volume 3, #1 (Feb 1998).
  16. ^ The Pulse #13 (March 2006).
  17. ^ The Pulse #15
  18. ^ Anthony Flamini & Ronald Byrd (w), Scott Kolins (p), Scott Kolins (i). Civil War: Battle Damage Report 1 (March 2007), Marvel Comics
  19. ^ "Marvel Assistant Size Spectacular" #2 (March 2009).
  20. ^ I Am An Avenger #2
  21. ^ New Avengers #7
  22. ^ New Avengers Annual 2011
  23. ^ Thing vol. 1 #35-36

External links

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