Legion of Doom Team Member
|Real name:||Vril Dox|
|Relatives:||Vril Dox (son); Brainiac 3 (grandson); Brainiac 4 (great grandson); Brainiac 5 (great-great grandson)|
|Base:|| Hall of Doom |
Brainiac's Skull Ship
|Affiliations:|| Legion of Doom|
|Abilities:|| Super Intelligence |
Generate Ultra ForceShield
|Voiced/Played:|| Superman:[?] |
Season 3: Ted Cassidy
1983 Shorts: Stan Ross
Seasons 5 - 6: Stan Ross
Brainiac is an android from outer space. He is one of Superman's worst foes. He was (and may still be) a member of the Legion of Doom. He originally appeared as a male humanoid, a Coluan with green skin. He was equipped with highly advanced artificial constructs and cybernetic components. The most obvious of which, was his mental computer input nodes that encircled his head.
The brilliant Professor Hecla, from the planet Mega (known to natives as Colu) created Brainiac. He programmed Brainiac to gather specimens from Earth and other places to repopulate Mega, which had nearly been wiped out of its' life during terrible atomic wars. These wars might have had something to do with the Computer Tyrants. News of such wars had reached Krypton, and it was falsely believed that everyone on the planet had perished.
But Heckla had survived and built Brainiac, and as Brainiac travels through space, searching for species to populate the barren Colu, he locates Krypton, and steals the city of Kandor by shrinking it and placing it in a bottle.
Not long after arriving on Earth, he joined a short-lived, team of villains, called A.P.E.
By the late '60s or so, Colu was repopulated, and Brainiac returned to his home planet. He found a way to pass on his robotic code biologically, and he thereby created a clone of himself; his "son" Vril Dox, to use as an aid for his scientific research. Presumably Heckla had died by now.
Conflicts with the Super Friends
Returning to Earth, Brainiac tries to find ways to destroy the Justice League of America. He also possesses a proton shrinker, which is a ray gun that shrinks objects. As previously mentioned, years ago, sometime before the destruction of Krypton, he used this shrinking technology to shrink the Kryptonian city of Kandor. He then placed the shrunken city and its' inhabitants into a bottle. He had apparently intended to take it to the planet Mega to repopulate it, but sometime many years later, Superman found the shrunken city (apparently stored on his ship, and he took it to his Fortress of Solitude where it still is to this day.
Sometime later he joined the Legion of Doom and battled with the Superfriends.
In 1984, Brainiac upgraded himself, which not only altered his physical appearance, but it also increased his intelligence. After his upgrade, Brainiac was completely composed of "living metal" in a robotic form. His head, torso, arms and legs could be reconfigured into any necessary form as needed including elongation or switching, as well as directly melding into wafer-thin electronic forms.
Brainiac's base of operations, and mode of transportation is now a skull shaped spacecraft.
Later that year, he built robots of Superman and Wonder Woman but they needed to be powered by Darkseid's omega beams so he enlisted Darkseid to help him. He then succesfully captured the Superfriends with the robots but Darksied wanted Wonder Woman, but Brainiac wouldn't allow it so Darkseid attacked him. During the battle the Superfriends escaped and he was captured while Darkseid escaped.
Brainiac would return a few months later and take over a small mining town called Buzzard's Roost, by hypnotizing everybody there. He planned on using them to help repair his ship but in the end he was defeated by the Superfriends.
About a year later, he successfully kidnapped Cyborg and telepathically placed his mind into a giant robot. Superman and Firestorm soon arrive at Brainiac's ship, stop him and free Cyborg. However, Brainiac was able to escape.
Powers and Abilities
- Superhuman Intellect
- Superhuman Strength: Due to his artificial body, he possessed superhuman strength and endurance. His later Robotic form had far more strength and endurance than his biological-simulation body.
- Superhuman Durability: He's not at the level of durability that Superman is, as he has had a hole punched through his robotic body before. Nevertheless, he is incredibly tough and most people can't hurt him if they tried.
- Force Field: His Ultra ForceShield is unbreakable, even by Superman.
- Invisibility: Brainiac apparently has a built in cloaking device.
- Mind Control: He has the technology to control people's minds, as he demonstrated in the town of Buzzard's Roost.
- Science: He has an understanding of pretty much all things scientific.
- Robotic Engineering: He has built many bodies for himself, the first one built by his original creator, Hecla. He has also built a number of robots to destroy the JLA.
- Computer Engineering: Brainiac, being a computer himself, is the king of computer systems.
- Bio-Engineering: Although he is an artificial intelligence, he also has knowledge about biological life forms, he even created a biological clone of himself, called Vril Dox.
- Indomitable Will: Brainiac never seems to give up trying to kill the Super Friends, despite the fact that he always loses. He always manages to confidently be certain that on his next conflict, he will win against the Super Friends...despite the fact that the odds are never in his favor.
Legion of Doom Team Members
- Brainiac first appeared in Action Comics, Vol. 1 #242 (July 1958).
- He was created by Otto Binder and Al Plastino.
- The Filmation's version of Brainiac to appear in a medium outside of the comic books. This version of Brainiac was created by writer Oscar Bensol. Later stories revealed the character's name to be Vril Dox.
- On the parallel-universe of Earth-One, Brainiac went through at least two incarnations:
- In his first Silver Age-incarnation, Brainiac was a bald, green-skinned humanoid who arrived on Earth and shrank various cities, including Metropolis, storing them in bottles with the intent of using them to restore Bryak, the planet he ruled. He protects himself from Superman using an ultra-force barrier, not even Superman can break through it.
- In his second Silver Age-incarnation, Brainiac was created on the distant planet of Colu as the humanoid interface for a massive computer network, Brainiac was created as a perfect operating system that began developing by cataloging and storing massive amounts of data and information of the planet. Gaining functional sentience, Brainiac was processed into a functional spy for the ruling class of Colu who were being assaulted by rebels who sought to overturn the repressive government. It was this version of Brainiac that first appeared with a distinctive grid work of red-diodes across his head, which later stories explained as the "electric terminals of his sensory nerves". This would remain his appearance throughout the 1960s and 1970s.
- Brainiac's legacy was revealed in Action Comics, Vol. 1 #276 (May 1961), in a Legion of Super-Heroes back-up story.
- Alan Kistler's History Of Brainiac! - Comic book historian Alan Kistler of MonitorDuty.com explores the entire history of this Superman villain all the way up to the present day, with in-depth discussions of why parts of the character's history were changed and how he's been interpreted in other media.
- Supermanica: Brainiac
- DC Animated Universe article on Brainiac
Appearances in Other Media
- ↑ The Filmation episode Superman meets Brainiac reveals the name of his home planet as Mega. The native name is Colu.
- ↑ As seen in Terror at 20,000 Fathoms.
- ↑ Seen in The New Adventures of Superman (1966) episode Superman Meets Brainiac.
- ↑ The name of Brainiac's shrink ray was mentioned by Lex Luthor in the Season 3 (1978) episode: Monolith of Evil
- ↑ Mentioned in the Season 4 (1979) episode: Terror at 20,000 Fathoms
- ↑ This attitude is displayed by Brainiac in The Ghost Ship, which was his last appearance.
- ↑ Go to DC Database for more on Action Comics, Vol. 1 #242 published in July 1958.
- ↑ As revealed in Action Comics, Vol. 1 #242 (July 1958), which can be found at the DC Database.
- ↑ "Metropolis Mailbag (column)" Superman, Vol. 1 #167 (February 1964), New York: DC Comics
- ↑ Engblom, Mark (28 April 2009). "Which Came First? Brainiac or BRAINIAC?".
- ↑ As revealed in Superman, Vol. 1 #167 (February, 1964), which can be found at the DC Database.
- ↑ As revealed in Action Comics, Vol. 1 #276 (May 1961), which can be found at the DC Database.