The Nexus of Pop-Culture Fandom

Character Sketches #9: Marvel’s The Klaw

Written by: Gary M. Kenny, CC2K Comics Editor

ImageThe Klaw aka: The Master of Sound. It’s hard to be afraid of a guy who wears a pink leotard and has a satellite for a hand. Regardless on how badass or powerful the status of a villain is, if someone’s thinking about going into a life of crime, the costume colors to stay away from are: pink, baby (powder) blue, and lavender. Not because they are “sissy colors” but because bright colors don’t hide well in the shadows, hence you never see any inner city gangs wearing pink jackets, well, I guess if they would if they sang show tunes and danced on stage. Anyway, though he might not be the toughest or scariest looking villain, there is still plenty to fear in “the Klaw” and that’s why he deserve this month’s CC2K character sketch.



The Klaw is one of Marvel’s most unusual villains, specifically this character’s design; a man with a robotic deranged face and a mechanical device for a hand. He is also one of Marvel’s oldest “b” status villains (created in 1966). Using a vibranium-powered sonic converter, Ulysses Klaw converted his body into a composed being of psionically “solidified” sound. Thus, Ulysses obtained superhuman strength, durability and endurance. Using his unique “claw” prosthetic appendage: “The sound generator,” he is able to perform a series of functions: blasts of tremendous force, projectiles of high intense sonic waves and the creation of mobile sound/mass constructs. Klaw can transform into pure energy and can propel himself through the air at the speed of sound. However, he is vulnerable to the vibration to the vibration-absorbing ore “Wakandan Vibranium” which causes him to lose his form, when prisoned, his room is lined with the material.  Image



Surprisingly the “Master of Sound” has been a threat to many of Marvel’s heroes. He has successfully beaten Storm, Captain America, Black Panther, Ka-Zar, the Thunderbolts, Daredevil, and the Fantastic Four. Klaw, while creating a duplicate version of himself out of sound, tormented Sue Storm (Invisible Woman) with images and sounds of her children being tortured; a sort of sound hypnotism. Later, she briefly thought she defeated his prosthesis, but he attacked her from behind, revealing his true self while his sound clones vanished. Not bad for a guy who dresses in pink!



Klaw isn’t undefeatable however, he is very vulnerable to sonics and vibrations that disrupt his form. He has been absorbed by heroes such as Dazzler, Guardian, and Ms. Marvel. He has died and been resurrected by his own sound waves and just like a music file, he has been copied and shared various times after his demise. Basically, he is immortal. Image




Origin: Ulysses Klaw was working as a physicist at the Technical University at Delft when he designed a sound transducer that was able to convert sound waves into physical matter. However, he needed an element known as Vibranium, which only existed in a small African country known as Wakanda. In order to obtain the needed amount, Klaw hired a group of mercenaries and traveled to Africa in search of it. He found the Wakandan tribe and their leader, T’Chaka, guarding the vibranium, which was part of their sacred mound. Klaw demanded that they give up the mound, but they refused and he ordered his men to kill T’Chaka. They gunned the chief down in front of his young son, T’Challa. Klaw then used his superior weaponry to massacre the tribesmen and burn down their village. In response, T’Challa stole Klaw’s sound-blaster from one of Klaw’s men and turned it on him, destroying his hand. Ten years later, Klaw returned to get revenge on T’Challa only to find that he had become the Black Panther.Image




Though the Klaw won’t be entering any nightmares of young children anytime soon, he is definitely a foe that should earn a more proper place in the Marvel community.  So what if he’s pink!




Hulk III#19
X-Men: Chaos Engine Book 3: Red Skull
Fantastic Four # 56
Black Panther III#26-29

Captain America vol. 3 #22
Secret Wars 1




Author: Gary M. Kenny, CC2K Comics Editor

Gary is a husband, father, fireman, comic reader, gamer, body builder, and rocker. He also is a co-owner of a bakery in upstate NY. He likes to tell everyone his favorite band is the Beatles, when his actual favorite band is the Alkaline Trio.

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