Martian Manhunter

The Martian Manhunter was created by Joe Samachson and Joe Certa and first appeared in Detective Comics #225 (November, 1955)

Species: Martian, from Mars, Sol System, Height: 6’7″, Weight: 300 lbs, Hair: None, Eyes: black

Other Aliases: John Jones, Jon Jonzz, Johann Johnson, Marco Xavier, and others
Place of Birth: Mars
Base of Operations: Z’onn Z’orr, Antarctica
Group Membership(s): Founding member of all incarnations of the Justice League of America, formally head of the Justice League Task Force.

Overview: The Martian Manhunter is possibly the most powerful extra-terrestrial living on the Earth today with the exceptions of Superman and Orion of New Genesis. His array of powers and abilities equals and in some cases exceeds even the Man from Krypton’s powers. His physical powers are not quite the equal of Superman’s but he makes up with mental abilities, invisibility, and shapeshifing abilities, making him a much more capable operative in covert operations.

History: see historical database The Unofficial Definitive Guide to the DC Universe – Martian Manhunter Historical Reference

Skills: The Martian Manhunter’s sound reasoning capabilities and long term association Earth’s global population, gives him an edge in dealing with humans of diverse governments, cultures and religions. In the northern hemisphere, the Martian Manhunter is one of many costumed adventurers battling against entropy. In the southern hemisphere of Earth, the Martian Manhunter is more well known than Superman. Considered the scourge of the underworld because of his dedication to truth and improving the lot of humanity everywhere, he is feared by underworld criminals worldwide. His noted skills include:

  • Highly developed detective skills
  • Advanced reasoning and logic capabilities
  • Excellent human relations skills
  • Fluent in many Earth languages
  • Highly developed empathic abilities

Source of Powers:

  • The Martian Manhunter’s powers come from his entirely alien physiology. Born of a Mars over a millenia ago, from a super advanced civilization, boasting advanced technology and genetic modifications over its people, the Martian Manhunter would appear to be a genetically, modified being with incredible powers stemming from the changes made in his body. Whether this is their natural state or an advanced state given to only a few individuals is unknown.
  • The Martian’s physiology would seem to be composed of a complex molecular chain that resembles polymer bonds but with the ability to be altered at will. The mass cannot be affected but the color, relative shape, (as long as its relatively humanoid) and size, (nothing smaller than 4 feet, or taller than 9 feet), imitating even clothing if desired. The bio-polymer is extremely flexible, durable, incredibly strong for a biological material and apparently self-sustaining. No one has ever seen the Martian Manhunter eat, except for reasons of politeness.

Physical Powers

  • Super Strength: The Martian’s superhuman strength comes from his plasmorphic structure formed from immensely long and complex molecular chains, augmented with his psionic and telekinetic abilities allowing him to lift incredible weights without these weights crumbling under the stress. The Martian has been seen lifting small tankers out of the ocean for short distances. By modifing the density of these bio-polymers, the Manhunter can make himself stronger by forcing the polymers into tighter bundles. At a rest state, the Manhunter can lift approximately 20 tons. Given a few minutes to reconfigure, he could match Superman pound for pound for about a minute. Then the bio-polymer would begin to suffer under the strain and begin to unravel. While the Manhunter’s strength can be on par with Superman and he lacks the long term endurance and stamina of the Kryptonian. This probably has to do with the Kryptonian’s storage and creation of MetaATP which the Martian biology would not have developed being so far from the Earth’s sun.
  • Flight: The Martian Manhunter flies by manipulation of gravitons (a subatomic particle associated with the force of gravity) manipulation of magnetic fields and control of his absolute molecular movement (a telekinetic effect). These combine to give him the ability to fly great distances with little fatigue and at great speed. He has been seen to fly at speeds up to 10 times the speed of sound in the Earth’s atmosphere. Speeds faster than this cause great environmental damage and are avoided unless absolutely necessary. Not needing to breathe, his bio-polymorphic skin and overall toughness make these speeds bearable and cause him no lasting injury. The Manhunter has also been seen to fly in space with no difficulty. Noting his methods of flight, he should be able to be detected with any technolgy that can detect graviton emissions.
  • Limited Invulnerability: The Manhunter’s invulnerability is no where near what Superman’s is, as proven by the battle against Doomsday. Doomsday, defeated the entire Justice League with a single blow for each member. Overall, the bio-morphic structure of the Manhunter’s body allows him to absorb most kinetic energies such as bullets, shrapnel or flying debris. Attacks of a nature greater than that, he can harden his bio-polymers by rebinding them and become nearly 10 times as resistant to damage as steel. Hazardous environments effect the Manhunter less than normal humans and he seems to recover from them much more quickly. He has proven to be immune to most human diseases, but no experimentation has been done to see what more advance viruses such as ebola or anthrax might have. Despite his invulnerability, fire cause the Manhunter to recoil and is claimed to reduce his invulnerability considerably.
  • Martian Vision: The actual nature of this power seems to vary depending on the reports. It has been seen to be a bolt of force, directed by the Manhunter’s eyes causing considerable damage, equivalent to 50-100 lbs of TNT. It has also been seen to cause flammable objects to catch fire. The range of this power is also unknown but has been seen to be effective at ranges of 500 feet or more. Judging from the infrequency of use, it must have a high energy cost or reduce the Martian’s effectiveness in some way.
  • Limited Shapeshifing Abilities: The most incredible of the powers of the Manhunter is the ability to shapeshift. He is able to literally control the molecular structure of his body’s bio-polymer and make it resemble anything he wants. He can form clothing, weapons with nonmoving or nonfunctioning parts (so he could form a sword from his body’s mass and it would work, but a gun would not, unless he was carrying some ammunition with him.) There does not seem to be any limit to the number of people the Manhunter can imitate and has stood in as a double for many famous people. His ability to imitate people and their mannerisms has stood him in good stead for his disguises (not to mention that his telepathy helps him get a disguise to be as authentic as possible, since he can pull the information directly from the mind of whomever is viewing him). It is rumored that he could change his shape in more fantastic ways but has yet to be substantiated.
  • Invisibility: The Manhunter can cause the bio-polymers in his body to lose their abililty to reflect light, rendering the Manhunter invisible to normal light and human sight. With more increased concentration, he can render himself more invisible along the electromagnetic spectrum, including the infrared and the ultraviolet ranges of the spectrum. Such increase range, however, reduces the amount of time he can maintain his invisibility. This invisibility does not affect other senses and he could still be detected by sound, smell or touch.
  • Intangibility: No physical explanation of this power make sense except that it is an aspect of his psionic powers shifting his mass into another dimension or out of vibrational phase with other objects in this dimension. Whichever it is, it has been seen rarely and believed to be difficult to maintain for extended periods.

Mental Powers

  • Telepathy: The Manhunter is considered a Class 3 telepath. He is able to read the mind of any normal human with no difficulties, assuming that human is not insane, of normal willpower and has received no special telepathic block training. Given a few seconds to concentrate, he can even read their subconscious mind as well. He can read a normal mind over distances of even a mile, if he knows where the target is located. He can use his telepathy with minds that he is familiar with anyplace in the world, as long as he was attuned to that person in the first place. This telepathy extends to distances as far away as the moon, since it is known that the Martian Manhunter can communicate with Earth with his telepathy. It is not known whether there is a limit to the number of people he can be attuned to or whether there are any special requirements to being attuned to him. In addition to reading minds, the Martian Manhunter can literally reprogram the mind of a subject into believing whatever he wants them to. He can use this ability to help subjects forget things that he does not want them to remember as well as set up post-hypnotic suggestions. How long such mental conditioning lasts is unknown.
  • Thought Sensing: The Manhunter can use the mental signature of a being to track it and can detect lifeforms by their empathic as well as telepathic signatures. He can detect whether a being is intelligent and can communicate with it empathically if it does not have a communication driven frame of reference for normal telepathy to function with. He can also detect various states of mind from anywhere in the world of the general populace in that area.
  • Telepathic Relay: As a Class 3 telepath, the Manhunter is able to use his telepathic prowess as a relay station for a group of minds, who can then “speak” to each other through him. This relaying ability seems to be limited to the same range as the Manhunters normal telepathic range.
  • Telepathic Assault: The Martian Manhunter can also use his telepathic abilities in an offensive manner. He has the ability to cause mental shutdown in a target using his mental powers. This effect has a duration of about an hour and unless the target possesses mental powers of their own, do not seem to be able to resist the attack. The Manhunter does not use this power often due to the invasive nature and harshness of such a telepathic attack. Using this power also drains him considerably and reduces his telepathic effectives for a time.


  • Fear of Fire: The Martian Manhunter has a psychosomatic fear of fire. It is unknown what the source of this fear is, whether it is a personal fear or a cultural fear, but whichever it is, it is a paralytic fear with the Manhunter. Exposure to fire, causes him to lose his powers, and in the case of extreme fire, to lose his control over his biomorphic form. The Manhunter is more vulnerable in this form and can take damage in this vulnerable state.
  • Vulnerability to Nervous System agents: because his body depends on his intact nervous system to maintain is bio-morphic shape, if his nervous system is interrupted, disrupted or damaged in some way, he loses control over his body and reverts to a gelatinous state.

Allies: Superman, Steel, Batman, Flash, Orion, Wonder Woman, Green Lantern, Zauriel, Aquaman, Big Barda

Enemies: Prometheus, Anyone who is an enemy of the Justice League. A more detail list of enemies has yet to be collected.

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