Cancer is the name and identity used by many super-villains in the Marvel Comics universe, all of whom work for the evil organization Zodiac.
The original Cancer first appeared in Avengers #72 (January 1970), and was created by Roy Thomas and Sal Buscema. The character subsequently appears in Ghost Rider #7 (August 1974), Iron Man #184 (July 1984), and West Coast Avengers #26 (November 1987), in which he is killed. Cancer appeared as part of the "Zodiac" entry in the Official Handbook of the Marvel Universe Deluxe Edition #20.
Jack Klevano is a founding member of the Zodiac criminal cartel, and his base of operations was Houston, Texas. The Zodiac Cartel was founded by Cornelius van Lunt (Taurus), handpicking the eleven other members; van Lunt concealed his own identity, while he was the only one who knew the identities of the others. Each member was based in a different American city as part of his nationwide criminal network, with the ultimate goal of world economic and political domination. The Zodiac was infiltrated by Nick Fury, posing as Scorpio; the Zodiac fought the Avengers and escaped. Avengers #72 Led by Taurus, the Zodiac later attempted to kill all Manhattan residents born under the sign of Gemini as a show of power, but were thwarted by the Avengers. Taurus's faction attempted to kill the Zodiac dissident faction, but all twelve leaders were captured by the Avengers. Avengers #120-122 A new android version of the Zodiac later appeared, led by Scorpio in a new android body, massacred the human Zodiac, and took over their criminal operations. West Coast Avengers Vol. 2 #26
Cancer was one of the LMDs which Scorpio constructed to be a part of his new Zodiac. Scorpio was forced to activate his LMDs early due to an attack by the Defenders. During this fray, Cancer engaged in combat with the Hulk and was smashed to bits. Later, Scorpio created a new Cancer using the Zodiac Key. This Cancer joined the rest of the Zodiac and a mentally unstable Quicksilver in seeking revenge on the Avengers. Cancer, Gemini and Quicksilver attacked Avengers Mansion. Cancer ended up battling the Wasp who used her bio-sting on his water-vents, shorting him out.
Scorpio created a third Cancer, again using the Zodiac Key. This Cancer joined the other LMDs in attacking the original Zodiac Cartel in Dallas, Texas. The LMDs succeeded in killing all of the original members, with the exception of Cornelius van Lunt and took their places in the criminal underworld. They next attacked a group of businessmen attending a cattle auction in Wichita, but were themselves attacked by the West Coast Avengers. Cancer fought the Moon Knight in this battle but fled when Sagittarius was destroyed by Hawkeye.
Cancer is one of the twelve members of the Zodiac, whose powers and costumed identities are based on astrology. Cancer was recruited by the leader, Scorpio, after the Zodiac's first battle with Alpha Flight, but in time for their attack on Department H.
Shira Myles was a member of the Zodiac as Cancer. They battled the New Warriors.Cancer and the rest of the Zodiac were decapitated by a one man Zodiac who wanted to free up the name for himself.
As Parker Robbins' cousin, John King routinely provided tips to his 'cuz' regarding places that would be easy to rob or had valuable merchandise. Usually accompanying Robbins, it was King's tip that led the duo to the warehouse where Parker killed the demon he stole his magic hood and boots from.
When Parker accidentally shot a NYPD officer, King stayed behind and got pinched while Parker escaped. Parker visited him in jail, and vowed to get him out. After spending several days there, he was released when FBI agents needed his testimony to close the case.
King wasn't forgotten as The Hood rose in infamy. As Robbins ran his gang of super-villains, John was his right-hand man, delivering messages for him, and escaping the situation(s) as Parker fought off the heroes. Their friendship possibly fractured when, under duress, King led the Avengers to the Hood's hideout in Los Angeles. This information led to the Hood's capture and the end of his gang of villains.
After returning from death, Thanos chose King to lead a new Zodiac team as Cancer, gathering a group of ambitious people who wanted to conquer the world, and gave them special suits which gave them super-powers.
Their mission was to steal different powerful items and take them out from Earth in order to bring balance to the planet and the cosmos. Captured after a battle with the Avengers, King revealed the Mad Titan's plan to the heroes.
Uvarov along with other agents Vasili Dassaiev, John Garrett, Shoji Soma, Cornelius van Lunt, Baron Strucker, Dum Dum Dugan, Nick Fury, Jake Fury, Daniel Whitehall and Thomas Davidson were called by Leonardo Da Vinci alias Aries to form the Great Wheel of Zodiac. Each member was assigned a codename from the Zodiac Calendar, he was given the name Cancer. The group consisted of the best covert intelligence agents from around the globe. After only a few key missions for Da Vinci, would provide them resources that would be of great value to their own separate agendas.
The Great Wheel later fell apart due to the betrayal of Viktor Uvarov and Vasili Dassaiev and The broken Wheel led to the creations of S.H.I.E.L.D., Hydra, Leviathan and the Zodiac Cartel.
- Main article: Orion (Marvel)
Powers and Abilities
The original Cancer dresses in a crab-like costume. He wears pincer-like prosthetic devices with great strength for gripping on his hands. The android Cancer has enhanced strength and endurance and an armored shell that provides some protection from physical and energy attacks. It also possesses blades on its wrist. In his second form, Cancer can project powerful jets of water from its hands and has a set of pincers which he can use as a weapon. In his third form, Cancer possesses an armored shell and has pincers in place of hands. Ecliptic's Cancer possessed superhuman strength, wore armor, used claws, and carried a Zodiac teleportation device.
- Cancer appears in The Avengers: United They Stand. This version is depicted as a crab-like alien.
- Cancer appears in the Marvel Anime|Marvel Anime: Iron Man episode "Going Nuclear." This version is depicted as a crab-like robot. He first appears when Iron Man investigates a Stark Industries ocean liner which is secretly holding a shipment of plutonium, enacting a scheme for the Zodiac to obtain the plutonium while framing Tony Stark for smuggling nuclear materials into Japan. But the scheme fails as Cancer is destroyed soon after. In the episode "Technical Difficulties," two Cancer robots attack Iron Man following the deletion of the Pisces Virus only for them to be destroyed by Ramon Zero.
Avengers: United They Stand
Cancer appears in The Avengers: United They Stand. This version is depicted as a crab-like alien.
Cancer was the second member of Zodiac to be fought by Tony. Whilst attempting to retrieve plutonium that he had been framed for smuggling into the country, he encountered Cancer within the ship. The Zodiac Warrior promptly attacked. The two battled shortly, damaging the ship before Cancer was thrown into the ocean.
Cancer later reappears in an attempt to retake the plutonium from Nanami after she accidentally picked it up after crashing into other Zodiac Agents. This time however, he is quickly dispatched by Tony, having a hole blasted straight through him.
Later, near the end of episode six, two more copies of Cancer attack Tony as he returns home, catching him off guard. However, both are destroyed by the arrival of Ramon Zero.