An industrialist, Donald Pierce first appeared as a high-ranking member of the Hellfire Club Inner Circle, where he held the position of White Bishop, during that organization’s first direct encounter with the X-Men. During this conflict, he battled Wolverine, Nightcrawler, and Colossus, and when Wolverine nearly severed his arm, it was discovered that he was a cyborg. The Hellfire Club Inner Circle was eventually defeated and Donald Pierce’s whereabouts were unknown for several years.
Pierce later appeared with Lady Deathstrike and three other cybernetically-enhanced mercenaries (Cole, Macon, and Reese) who had been fatally wounded by Wolverine during the Hellfire's first skirmish with the X-Men. All five characters were consumed by their desire for revenge against the X-Men, and Wolverine in particular. To that end Pierce created an army of cyborgs out of low-life thugs and a few mercenaries. He named his army “The Reavers".
After rescuing their captive Tyger Tiger from the Reavers, the X-Men expelled the cyborgs from their Australian Outback headquarters, and appropriated the base for themselves (though Pierce was not present during this encounter, and was not yet revealed as the Reavers’ creator). The Reavers set out to defeat the X-Men, mounting a return to their old headquarters, this time with Pierce and Deathstrike present, but after the X-Men had escaped through the Siege Perilous they only managed to capture Wolverine who they tortured and crucified, Jubilee saved him from the cross. At one point Pierce created two super intelligent sentient androids (Elsie-Dee and Albert) to kill Wolverine, but they developed ethics and turned on Pierce and abandoned the Reavers.
A few years later, a member of the Upstarts, Trevor Fitzroy, sent Sentinels to destroy the Reavers because they were a threat to mutants and Pierce (as the Hellfire Club's former White King) was worth a lot of points in the deadly game the Upstarts played. Of the Reavers, only Lady Deathstrike and Cylla escaped the Sentinels and it appeared that Pierce had been destroyed. The rest of the Reavers were completely wiped out.
Attacks on Mutants
Despite his apparent death, Pierce resurfaced to trouble the X-Men once again. He recently started an anti-mutant hate group and enlisted several members. He revealed a plot to take militant terrorist actions against mutants and was thwarted by the X-Men. He was beaten by Wolverine in hand-to-hand combat, despite his strength advantage. It was revealed that little-to-no human tissue remains in Donald, which shows how he was able to survive the slaughter in Australia and falling to his death in Antarctica. Pierce had shown he'd further modified himself with technology from the future that belonged to the time-traveler Cable, against whom he bore a bitter grudge.
Pierce used his safehouse in the Swiss Alps to improve upon his bionic anatomy, with an added Adamantium finish stolen from a private cache belonging to Khyber. Pierce later tried to take over Sebastian Shaw’s new Hellfire Club, launching an attack and slashing Shaw’s chest. Though Shaw was left critically injured and later needed to be hospitalized, he was able to punch off Pierce's head.
Young X-Men & Death
Pierce resurfaced, impersonating Cyclops and gathering a team of Young X-Men in order to assassinate Sunspot, the new Black King of the Hellfire Club. He was defeated by the combined forces of the Young X-Men and the New Mutants and imprisoned by the X-Men. He befriended Dust whom he promised to heal from her deadly cell degradation if she would free him from his imprisonment. The plot however failed, and Pierce remained a prisoner of the X-Men.
Later during the search for the Red Skull, the Unity Squad crashed a bacchanal cruise liner for supervillains. Donald Pierce was seen alive and well playing at a craps table with other Hellfire Club Inner Circle members beside him.
Return of Wolverine
With the Reavers at their lowest ebb, Donald Pierce and his cyber jockeys alongside their new members, Star and Shine, took a big money gig in order to ascertain the mortal remains of their hated adversary Wolverine for a potential buyer.
Their mission ended in failure due in part to the X-Men having displaced the body of their fallen comrade from the adamantium statue it was trapped in beforehand, said makeshift headstone being left as a sort of lure for those who would attempt to desecrate his grave. Pierce and his team were soon rounded up by the X-Men and deposited to Alpha Flight for incarceration; however, they instead ended up conscripted to the services of O*N*E. In exchange for bodily repairs and upgrades to their bionics, Pierce and his Reavers were tasked with hunting down targeted mutants for General Callahan.
With their latest acquisition being Miss Sinister, they would have fulfilled their agreement and the National Emergency director would grant Pierce and his crew their freedom, but Callahan went back on his deal, opting to enslave Pierce and Cylla through a fail-safe installed into their refurbished mechatronics while killing off Stomper, Watchel, and everyone else involved.
While in the forced service of his owners, Donald was chewed out by Callahan when a contingent of his O.N.E. operatives were taken down by a loosely formed enclave of former X-Men despite being armed with Reaver-designed battle gear, but Pierce snidely chided his slave driver that it wasn't the equipment that failed, rather the the corrupt federal agents who coerced their services to begin with.
When most of the aforementioned mutants had been captured. The cyborg was overjoyed to find himself working with Beast, who had supposedly submitted himself to their services in exchange for the well-being of his teammates.
Unbeknownst to everyone else, however, Pierce had been in secret contact with the remnants of his Reaver forces via radio receiver installed into his cybernetic brain. Alex Summers had entered an alliance with some of Pierce's remaining cyber soldiers, all of whom stormed the Location 22 base of their shared enemy in order to free their respective allies. Naturally when the fighting became heated, Pierce's Reavers double-crossed the mutants, revealing that the list of targets Donald and his cohorts were tasked by the General to go after were in fact potential carriers of a piece of Nanobionic code needed in order to complete a new breed of Sentinel Callahan's outfit had been tinkering with and secretly placed inside Havok by Bastion during his moral inversion.
Powers and Abilities
Cybernetics: Nearly all of Donald Pierce's organic tissue has been replaced with highly advanced cybernetics constructed of a lightweight metal alloy that function in much the same way as his organic tissue once did, only vastly more efficient. Originally, only Pierce's arms and legs were replaced with cybernetic limbs, yet Pierce has steadily replaced his organic tissues over the years with cybernetic, adding upgraded technology from the future and back to his body when needed.
- Superhuman Strength: The musculature of Pierce's upper and lower body has been replaced with highly advanced hydraulics that are many times stronger than his organic tissue was. At peak operating efficiency, Pierce possesses sufficient superhuman strength to lift about 10 tons.
- Superhuman Speed: As in the case of physical strength, the advanced hydraulics of Pierce's cybernetics enable him to run and move at speeds beyond the natural physical limits of the finest human athlete.
- Superhuman Stamina: Pierce's advanced hydraulics enable him to exert his body physically for much longer periods of time than a normal human. While they don't produce fatigue toxins like human muscles, the hydraulics are susceptible to wear and tear if he exerts himself for too long. At peak efficiency, Pierce can exert himself physically for up to 24 hours before the overall efficiency of his hydraulic systems begins to sustain damage without Pierce stopping to rest and repair any damage.
- Superhuman Durability: The light metal alloy that makes up most of Pierce's body is much more resistant to physical injury than the organic tissue of a normal human. Pierce's cybernetic body can withstand powerful impact forces, high caliber bullets, falls from great heights, exposure to extreme temperatures, and powerful energy blasts without sustaining injury. With the addition of Adamantium added to his hardware, Pierce's new robotic body was all but indestructible. Easily able to fend off attacks from Wolverine's bone claws with little difficulty.
- Superhuman Agility: Pierce's agility, balance, and bodily coordination are enhanced to levels that are beyond the natural physical limits of the finest human athlete.
- Superhuman Reflexes: Pierce's reflexes are similarly enhanced, and are superior to those of the finest human athlete.
- Psionic Resistance: Over the years, Pierce has added various technology to his organic brain tissue that enables him to revert telepathic assaults back to the person they originate from, at least to a certain degree. Exceptionally powerful telepaths however, such as Charles Xavier or Jean Grey, have proven resistant to this ability and have successfully assaulted Pierce's mind.
- Sensors: Pierce's eyes have been retrofitted into enhanced visual optics enabling a host of scanning, homing and relaying arrays. This was shown to be particularly useful while a prisoner in the X-Men's base of Utopia during the Messiah War, where Bastion; through his connection to Donald's Transmode alterations, enabled him to scan and assess the structural foundation and weaknesses of the islands infrastructure and architecture.
- Artificial Limb Transformation: After upgrading his body with some technology from Cable's future timeline, Pierce could morph his robotic arms or other extremities of his into new mechanical forms, mainly weapons of some sort. Given how streamlined the transformations he could make were, it was assumed they had an almost liquid metal semblance of some sort. The munitions Pierce's produced so far are 6" razor nails, projectile knives and morphed razor blades, Micro missiles with adaptive nanowear payload, plasma generation/discharge channeled through his claws or as energy blasts and an arm cannon.
- Jet Propulsion: Donald had modified his indestructible carapace with rocket boosters which enabled him rocket boosted flight capabilities. Their effective range and thrust duration is currently unknown.
Techno-Organics: While apart of Bastion's Purifiers Pierce was retrofitted with the same Transmode Virus strain that Bastion had used to control and resurrect much of his inner circle of subordinate. It is currently unknown if he possessed any of the unique qualities that comes with being a techno-organic being infected with The Technarchy strain. What was known was that it enabled him a wireless connection to Bastion who could manipulate and connect with it with is computer brain.
Pierce is a cunning strategist and industrialist. He is also a good hand-to-hand combatant, though he tends to rely more on brute strength rather than technique in most situations.
- Pierce was modeled after actor Donald Sutherland; the name refers both to Sutherland himself and to the character "Hawkeye" Pierce from M*A*S*H.
- It was revealed in X-Force (Vol. 3) #3, that Pierce's "mutants killed" count was 348, including the later murder of Wolf Cub it would be 349.
- After Krakoa became a sovereign nation state for mutants, Donald Pierce was considered to be the fourth most deadly threat to mutants, and was responsible for 348 mutant deaths. A number which apparently does not include the murder of Wolf Cub.
- 103 appearance(s) of Donald Pierce (Earth-616)
- 10 minor appearance(s) of Donald Pierce (Earth-616)
- 19 mention(s) of Donald Pierce (Earth-616)
- 22 image(s) of Donald Pierce (Earth-616)
- 4 quotation(s) by or about Donald Pierce (Earth-616)