black beast

Dark Beast

''This article is about the comic book character. "Dark Beast" is also another name for Satan.

Dark Beast (Henry Philip McCoy), sometimes known as the Black Beast, is a Marvel Comics supervillain, an alternate reality evil version of the X-Men’s Beast. Created by Scott Lobdell and Roger Cruz, he first appeared in X-Men: Alpha (1995).

In the Age of Apocalypse reality, McCoy was a nefarious geneticist who implemented cruel experiments under the tyrant Apocalypse. He was one of a handful of characters to escape the Age of Apocalypse reality to the regular Marvel Universe, where he has continued his unethical experiments.

Fictional character biography

In the alternate dimension he came from, Hank McCoy was a mad scientist working for Mister Sinister in his breeding pens, intent on breeding more powerful mutants according to Apocalypse's "survival of the fittest" dogma. However, while Sinister was methodical and rational in his experiments, McCoy, as ruthless as his mentor, sadistically delighted in causing pain to his lab subjects and in the cruelty of his experiments, which is why he was nicknamed the Beast both by prisoners and Sinister's Elite Mutant Force. McCoy also experimented on himself in order to further his mutation, and gained his ape-like bestial appearance. Any mutant that he deemed unworthy was turned into a component of a genetic stew that was used to create Apocalypse's army of Infinites.

Besides being one of the creators of the Infinites, the Dark Beast also experimented on Blink, on Jamie Madrox (thus being one of the creators of The Madri), merged all of the Power siblings into one hideous creature, made Nemesis into Holocaust following his defeat at the hands of Magneto, and was also responsible for the creation of Holocaust's lead hunter Wolverine (not to be confused with the Wolverine of the X-Men, who was known only as Weapon X in that reality).

With the end of the Age of Apocalypse, the Dark Beast was able to escape into Earth-616 through the M'Kraan Crystal. He was believed to have died due to Quicksilver's interference in his set trajectory. However, the only damage was that he landed twenty years in the past in the Morlock Tunnels. Upon his arrival he was met by a young Emma Frost, who helped him to regain some of his scattered memories. The Dark Beast was responsible for the creation of the Morlocks.

The Dark Beast later kidnapped the real Beast and kept him a prisoner behind a brick wall. He infiltrated the X-Men in his place by altering his appearance to match the real McCoy's fur color. He helped keep up the ruse by slaying many of Hank's childhood friends and teachers, although he found himself unable to kill Hank's parents. Angered at this emotional weakness, he decapitated a pedestrian as he left town. The Dark Beast was able to keep up his ruse until the Onslaught Saga, during which the Dark Beast joined Onslaught.

He also had a few run-ins with Generation X and Gene Nation. There he was the leader of the newly revamped Gene Nation, although through the robotic body of Wynter, attempting to capture Generation X in order to experiment on them. The previous meeting between him and Emma Frost was also revealed. He led an incarnation of the Brotherhood of Mutants and was revealed to have created the Morlocks, which would later be revealed as the cause for the Mutant Massacre.

Right before House of M, the Dark Beast was in Genosha where he joined Xavier's team after being offered parole. It was confirmed in The 198 Files one-shot that he stayed powered after M-Day.

Dark Beast returns and finally confronts his counterpart in the Endangered Species storyline where he ambushes him in Neverland, the extermination camp ran by Weapon X, to offer his services regarding finding a cure for M-Day. The two form an uneasy alliance to tackle the impending mutant extinction but part ways due to their drastically different moral approaches to science. During a trip to the Guthrie household aimed at requesting samples of DNA from the mother and father of several mutant, and non-mutant, children - the Dark Beast (without warning Henry) poisons one of the un-mutated Guthrie boys in a quick scientific experiment. He then carries the dying boy's body back to the house, suggesting that they should try one of the girls next. Shocked and enraged with his actions, Hank attacks the Dark Beast who, disgusted with Henry's inability to do all that is necessary to save their mutant species, beats him almost unconscious. The fight is interrupted by Mrs. Guthrie, who fires a round from a double-barrled shotgun into Dark Beast's left shoulder. After scolding Mrs. Guthrie for thinking a round of birdshot would put him down, the Dark Beast is knocked unconscious by Henry.

Powers and abilities

The Dark Beast has the same superhuman abilities and intelligence as the main Marvel Universe's Beast before he underwent his recent cat-like mutation. However, Dark Beast was not physically as powerful as his counterpart was in the normal Marvel continuity as he did not train on a regular basis and he is 20 years older than the main universe's Beast.

While as intelligent as his counter-part, "normal" Beast seems to possess a larger spectrum of knowledge, as evidenced when Dark Beast was infiltrating the X-Men, he became annoyed at the amount of knowledge the X-Men expected him to possess. This is due to Dark Beast specialising in genetics, while 616 Beast maintained study in multiple fields.

Alternate Continuities

An alternate Dark Beast is seen in the X-Men: Endangered Species storyline alongside Brute of the Mutant X reality.

Other Media

Video games

In the X-Men Legends II: Rise of Apocalypse video game, Dark Beast appears as a brainwashed Beast who believes himself to be a follower of Mister Sinister and Apocalypse. He battles the player as a boss along with Mr. Sinister. The cause of Beast's actions was the drugs created by Sinister. After being cured, Beast begins to feel guilty for his actions. Dark Beast has special dialogue with Storm.


External links

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