Defenders writer Steve Gerber formed the Headmen from 1950s anthological horror-story characters appearing in the reprint title Weird Wonder Tales #7 (Dec. 1974). That comic's five reprinted stories included the introduction of Dr. Arthur Nagan, the Gorilla-Man, from Mystery Tales #21 (art by Bob Powell); Chondu the Yogi, from Tales of Suspense #9 (art by George Evans); and Dr. Jerry Morgan, a.k.a. Shrunken Bones, from World of Fantasy #11 (art by Angelo Torres). In The Defenders #32 (Feb. 1976), the Headmen were joined by Gerber's newly created Ruby Thursday (Thursday Rubinstein), who ran for President of the United States and was the instigator of the death of another Gerber creation, Omega the Unknown. In the same issue, Doctor Strange declared that Chondu's real name was Harvey Schlemerman, and Jack Norris, husband of the woman whose body was being used by Valkyrie, claimed to have seen him perform.
The Headmen made a comical appearance in John Byrne's She-Hulk comic, during a period when he was reviving Marvel villains, mostly as fodder for purposes of She-Hulk's fourth-wall breaking commentary. They had kidnapped She-Hulk for the purpose of giving Chondu a slightly more normal body then he currently sported. She-Hulk had temporarily been convinced her head had been detached and placed on a life-support system but this was not true, as she discovered with the aid of Spiderman, who had conveniently dropped by for the mandatory third issue guest spot.
Appropriately, they also turned up for one issue of the comical Defenders vol. 2 relaunch, by Kurt Busiek and Erik Larsen, up to their usual mad scientist hijinks. Chondu had an arachnid cyborg body for this outing.