Kang is a male comic supervillain that features in Marvel Comics.
Kang was originally Nathaniel Richards, formerly Rama-Tut and the Scarlet Centurion. Inspired by a meeting with Doctor Doom, he became Kang the Conqueror, gathering an army and conquering 40th century Earth. He then expanded into space- over the years, he conquered such enemies as the Badoon, the Universal Church of Truth, the Courts of Kosmos and the Shi'ar Imperium. Kang also sought conquests in other eras, traveling to 20th century Earth and battling the Avengers early in their career. Defeated by the heroes, he came to respect their abilities, driving him to combat them again and again.
Back in the 40th century, Kang attempted to impress Ravonna, daughter of King Carelius, by subjugating the Avengers. However, this led the commander of his elite guard, Baltag, to realize the mortality of his liege, and he led a revolt and attack on Carelius' kingdom. Kang won the battle and Ravonna's love, but she took a shot intended for him. Mourning, Kang placed Ravonna's body in stasis, and redoubled his conquering drive. He also began searching for a means to restore Ravonna.
During a trip to the 20th century to retrieve a lost Growing Man, Kang was tossed into Limbo thanks to Thor. As a result, he discovered the machinery of Immortus, and used it to rescue Ravonna. However, he also discovered that his journeys across time had created many divergent versions of himself- including one that founded the trans-temporal city of Chronopolis, and another that developed technology to send his mind to another body at the moment of his death.
(Another of these duplicates tried to kidnap the Celestial Madonna for himself, only to be thwarted by the Avengers, Rama-Tut (actually a retired Kang) and Immortus (his future self). This same duplicate later tried to conquer the 20th century by conquering the 19th, only to be defeated once again- and seemingly slain by Thor. In actuality, his mind transferred to another body.)
Although impressed by his doubles, Kang decided they were a threat, and formed the Council of Kangs. Ostensibly, the Council was intended to pool their efforts, but in reality, he used the gathering to destroy the other Kangs. In the process, he gathered their own timelines' worth of holdings to add to his empire. Unfortunately for him, Ravonna sided with Immortus- his future self. Immortus defeated Kang by giving him the sum memories of his duplicates. Driven to the brink of madness, Kang used the temporal circuitry in his suit to force a divergence, splitting the burden of memories. (The duplicate Kang- who later nicknamed himself "Fred Kang"- became involved with the Cross-Time Kang Corps, ultimately dissipating in the time-stream.)
The mainstream Kang went back to Chronopolis to recuperate. As time went on, he found himself becoming more of an administrator than a warrior. Worried that he was on the path to becoming Immortus- a future self for which he only had disdain- he began playing "games," participating in the Infinity War and founding the city of Timely. He even found himself in battle with an alternate Ravonna, who called herself Terminatrix, ultimately saving her life as she had his when they first met. Terminatrix placed him in stasis, and took over his empire.
Terminatrix ruled until the threat of Alioth arose, at which point she was forced to revive Kang to help. With the assistance of the Avengers, Kang used a Chrono-Key (containing a version of Tempus and powered by the sum life-forces of the Cross-Time Kang Corps) to block Alioth. The Avengers, disgusted at his tactics, went home. Kang confronted Terminatrix, revealing he had "allowed" her to see his empire to see all that he had accomplished. He offered her a choice- rule by his side, or travel to the year 9999 to become Revelation. Terminatrix chose neither, stabbing Kang in the back and returning him to stasis, telling him that they would be equals on their next meeting. (In the timeline known to Marcus Immortus and Revelation, they joined forces instead; presumably, Marcus Immortus was Kang and Terminatrix's son.)
Later, Terminatrix revived Kang again, and becoming Ravonna again, they rekindled their romance, ruling jointly over their chronal empire. However, Kang wearied of being an administrator. Leaving Ravonna in charge, he became Rama-Tut once again, eventually opposing one of his divergent past selves during the Celestial Madonna crisis. But after his failure to change events, Rama-Tut surrendered to fate, and resolved himself to becoming Immortus.
In a divergence, however, Rama-Tut saw a vision of Immortus' servitude to the Time-Keepers. Disgusted, Rama-Tut refused to surrender to destiny- returning to Chronopolis and Ravonna, he became Kang the Conqueror once more. Kang first disrupted the other chronal realms, pitting Alioth against the Time Variance Authority and the Delubric Consortium against Revelation. He also removed the mind-transfer technology- he would have no more safety nets. Determined to destroy Immortus, he studied his future self intensely, as well as studying Immortus' masters, the Time-Keepers.
Kang allied with Libra, the Supreme Intelligence and a diverse group of time-displaced Avengers to ruin Immortus' (and the Time Keepers') plan to destroy Rick Jones. In the battle that ensued, Chronopolis was lost. Kang brooded for a time, before spearheading an assault on the Time-Keepers themselves. To negate Kang's threat, the Time-Keepers tried to force his transformation into Immortus. He resisted, and thanks to Libra, he separated from his future self, becoming free to pursue his own destiny.
Kang later returned to fight the Avengers in a grand scheme, the Kang War, in which he and his son, the Scarlet Centurion, attacked Earth from Damocles Base in orbit. This war led to a crushing defeat of the Avengers, with the destruction of Washington DC and the surrender of Earth. Eventually a band of Avengers managed to rebel and defeat Kang. Kang, finally defeated in an epic war, allowed himself to be captured and held for trial. While waiting for trial, the Scarlet Centurion saved Kang, leading Kang to stab the Scarlet Centurion for going against his wishes. Knowing that he had no suitable heir to leave his legacy to, Kang left the twenty-first century to continue his exploits.
Kang once more appeared when he visited his youthful self in order to execute a bully and thus save his younger self from troubles. This horrified his younger self and drove him to travel back in time. As Iron Lad, the young Kang gathered a makeshift band of Young Avengers to defeat Kang. Kang attacked the Young Avengers and time began to splinter due to the paradoxes. Iron Lad, in a fit of rage, stabbed Kang through the chest, killing him. As time continued to fall apart, the Young Avengers cast a memory spell on him to make him forget his exploits as a Young Avenger and returned him to his rightful time so that he could once more grow up to become Kang and thus save the timestream.
Personality and attributes
It was said that ultimately Kang was a conqueror and thought in those terms. He was notorious and a ruthless figure who was a plunderer of epochs. (Guardians of the Galaxy v2 #19)
He had a son who was a warrior and went by the name of the Scarlet Centurion. (Avengers v3 #41) Another of his children was Ramades who was born during his time as Rama-Tut though this son was abandoned. Ramades by the time he reached 20 years of age discovered his father's time travel equipment and intended to be greater than Kang himself. (4 v1 #16)
Powers and abilities
The trans-temporal armor allowed him to pull any weapon in history out of the timestream for him to use against his foes. (Young Avengers v1 #5)
He was shown to be a skilled fighter even without his armor where he was able to expertly wield a sword and break a persons arm. (Young Avengers v1 #5)
Macrobots were a type of robots that served him that were able to hold humanoids prisoners and use them as a power source. (Avengers v1 #129)
He could remotely transport others across the timestream via a sphere that generated the 'Light of the Centuries. (Avengers v1 #69)
Kang had made use of a mobile flagship for his forces with this being Damocles Base that could travel through time and was cloaked from more primitive era's technology. (Avengers v3 #41)
He had his headquarters situated in a citadel at Chronopolis that was a domain which touched every point in history. (Fantastic Four Annual v1 #25)
At its centre was the Heart of Forever that was a trans-chronal engine which allowed the city to exist in every branch of the timestream simultaneously. (Avengers Forever v1 #3)
- Kang was created by Stan Lee and Jack Kirby where he first appeared as Rama-Tut in Fantastic Four v1 #19 (October, 1963) but debuted as Kang in Avengers v1 #8 (September, 1964).
- In Official Handbook of the Marvel Universe v4 #14 (2005), it was stated that his illegitimate son Ramades came from him and a slave woman in Egypt with the boy hating his father where he uncovered some of Kang's time travel technology after which he sought to conquer history.
- In Exiles v3 #5 (2018), an alternate version of Kang was shown in the Multiverse where he had become the Time-Eater. This version sought ultimate power and took the cosmic energy from a Galactus of another reality where he gained the Power Cosmic which he began to use to devour multiple universes to become the supreme being in all of the Multiverse.
- In Edge of Spider-Geddon v1 #1 (2018), an alternate version of the character known as Kang the Conglomerator inhabited a world in the Multiverse. He was resident of 2099 where he was the owner of Kangco Inc. Ltd that sought to trademark super-powered identities.
- In Old Man Quill v1 #10 (2019), an alternate version of Kang was shown to inhabit the world of the Wastelands located on Earth-807128. This one participated in the supervillain uprising orchestrated by the Red Skull where he aided in targeting Mr. Fantastic. Kang was able to dispose of Mr. Fantastic and the Invisible Woman but was wounded by a time travelling Peter Quill who was looking to acquire the Ultimate Nullifier and use it against Galactus 55 years in the future.
In other media
- In The Avengers: United They Stand, Kang appeared as an antagonist in the animated series in the episode "Kang" where he was voiced by actor Ken Kramer. He was shown as being a cruel tyrant native to the 41st century tyrant who had oppressed billions of people. A revolution emerged that defeated him and his forces whereupon the villain was imprisoned a dimension that could be accessed by an obelisk. The obelisk was displaced in time back to the modern age where it remained at a museum. Kang was accidently freed from his prison where he battled the Avengers with him rapidly aging the people of New York along with Tigra before attacking Avengers Mansion. Ant-Man tricked Kang into taking a bomb that was attacked to the obelisk with the explosion trapping the tyrant back in his prison.
- In The Avengers: Earth's Mightiest Heroes, Kang was as an antagonist in the series with multiple appearances and was voiced by actor Jonathan Adams. He was an inhabitant of the 41st century who forged a powerful empire that ruled the world and was in love with a woman named Ravonna. However, an event in Earth's distant past affected the timeline which erased this future but not before Kang travelled back in time to the source of the event. Despite surviving, his love Ravonna was trapped in a temporal state after being affected by the erasure of her timeline. Kang sought to find the source of the temporal change which he concluded was Captain America who made a decision that caused Earth's sun to be split in half thus devastating the planet's surface. After failing to eliminate Captain America, he sent his forces to conquer Earth in order to unite it under his rule to fight the coming invasion from the Kree/Skrull War.
- In Avengers Assemble, Kang appeared as an antagonist in the animated television series third season where he first appeared in the episode "The Conqueror" and was voiced by actor Steven Blum.
- In Next Avengers: Heroes of Tomorrow, Kang made a brief cameo appearance in a flashback sequence in the animated film where he was shown as being one of the many enemies that were defeated by the Avengers.
- In Marvel: Avengers Alliance, Kang appeared as a hero character in the Facebook video game. His backstory mentioned him as being a distant relative of Mr. Fantastic named Nathaniel Richards who was from the year 3000 who had discovered the secret of time travel. With advanced future technology, he enslaved the past and carved an era-spanning empire with him taking the name Kang the Conqueror. The enigmatic and powerful Kang was devoted to preserving the timeline which exceeded his desire of conquest.
- In Marvel: Contest of Champions, Kang as both a boss and antagonist in the video game. He was shown as being the rival Summoner who sought to acquire the Iso-Sphere.
- In Lego Marvel Super Heroes 2, Kang featured as the antagonist and was a playable character in the video game where he was voiced by actor Peter Serafinowicz. He was responsible for capturing specific locations in time and space that were used to form Chronopolis. Kang then tricked the Avengers into defeating the Man-Thing in an effort to destroy the Nexus of All Realities. In the final battle, Captain America defeated Kang with Ravonna regressing him into an infant through the use of a time crystal. During the mid-credit scene, he was shown playing with a flying sword and babbling 'Kang'. During the post-credit scene, an elderly Kang accompanied Ravonna, Cosmo the Spacedog, Man-Thing and the Supreme Intelligence as they appeared in Manhattan to warn the Avengers of a new threat.
- Avengers v1:
- Avengers Forever v1 (2001)
- Avengers: Earth's Mightiest Heroes v1:
- Young Avengers v1:
- Avengers v4:
- Uncanny Avengers v1:
- Uncanny Inhumans v1:
- All-New, All-Different Avengers v1:
- Old Man Quill v1: