Kang the Conqueror

Real Name: Nathaniel Richards

First Appearance:

  • As Rama-Tut – Fantastic Four #19 (October 1963)
  • As Kang – Avengers #8 (September 1964) Adventure Comics #346 (July 1966)

Powers: Kang the Conqueror, wears a battle suit that grants him increased strength. In addition, it also gives him the ability to project energy, holograms, and force fields, as well as allows him to survive for an extended period without food or water. Kang possesses a high-level intellect, is skilled in hand-to-hand combat, and is an incredible tactician. He is also able to time travel, is resistant to radiation, and has access to highly advanced technology. Finally, Kang can control most forms of technology.

Affiliation: Council of Kangs and Cross-Time Kangs

Did You Know? Kang is related to both Reed Richards and Franklin Richards

A Little History

Created by Jack Kirby and Stan Lee, Kang the Conqueror first appeared (as Kang) on the pages of Avengers #8 back in 1964.

The origin of Kang is a little confusing, so hang on.

Before he was Kang, he was Nathaniel Richards, a scholar from the 31st Century. As Nathaniel, he was fascinated with history and, more specifically, time traveling. This fascination led him to discover some time-traveling technology. With time technology (now shaped as a Sphinx), Richards travels back to ancient Egypt. After subjugating the Egyptians into his role, he assumes the role of the Pharaoh, Rama-Tut.

He chose to go back to ancient Egypt after learning that this time period gave birth to arguably the first and strongest Mutant in En Sabah Nur. As Pharaoh, Richards hoped to either coerce or force En Sabah Nur to become his heir. Unfortunately, this didn’t work out for Richards as the time-displaced Fantastic Four showed up and put a stop to his plans.

Shortly after his defeat, Richards attempted to return to the 31st Century. His attempt, however, ended in both error and success. Although he aimed to land back in his own time, Richards overshot the time–traveling device and wound up one thousand years into the future. Upon landing in the future, he realized that this Earth was much different than the one he knew. In fact, not only did this Earth possess highly advanced technology that nobody understood, but it had also been ravaged by war.

With the technology at his side, Richards crafted his now famous battle suit and conquered the Earth. From here on out, he would go by the name Kang the Conqueror. As Kang quickly realized that this world was dying and not worth being a part of. As such, he boarded his time-traveling device and made his way to a more fruitful time period to conquer.

His first appearance as Kang sees him show up in Avengers #8. During this issue, he reappeared in the 20th Century and found himself locked in battle with the Avengers. His confrontation with the team is successful, and he is able to apprehend all members of the team, save for Wasp and Rick Jones.

With the Avengers successfully defeated, Kang threatens that the inhabitants of Earth have 24 hours to surrender to him. With the help of a few friends, Rick Jones convinces Kang that he is his ally. Once the moment allowed it, Jones and his friends double-crossed Kang and freed the Avengers. In an attempt to stop the now-free Avengers, Kang released some radiation. If this sounds strange, understand that those from Kang’s time period are immune to radiation.

Or so he thought.

Before Kang can even finish releasing the radiation, Thor uses Mjolnir to absorb the radiation. With it absorbed, Thor sent it back at Kang in a way that not even he could withstand. From this point forward, both the Avengers and the world knew of Kang the Conqueror.