Quote1 My name's John Steele ... I kill Nazis. Quote2
-- John Steele src

Early Life

Not much is known about the history of John Steele. At this time, most of our information on John Steele has come from the recollections of his former fellow soldier Steve Rogers. Steele is known as "America's First Super Soldier". His actual age is unknown but he is rumored to have been involved in the American Civil War.[1]

World War I

John Steele (Earth-616)

John Steele during World War I

John Steele was a member of the US Army that saw combat in Europe during World War I. In his only recorded mission during that time he helped to liberate a spy named Marie Antoinette from behind enemy lines.[2][3]

At some time during the year 1920, John Steele was captured by the German army, though the circumstances behind his capture are unrevealed. He was placed in stasis so that Nazi scientists could learn the secrets behind his super-human abilities.[4][verification needed]

World War II

By February of 1940, John Steele's body was kept in stasis at a lab located in Frankfurt, Germany. There Nazi scientists -- including Abraham Erskine sought to unlock the secrets of Steele's abilities for Project: Nietzsche. Their attempts were met with little success.[4]

Following Erskine's defection to the United States, his successors continued to try and learn Steele's secrets until the summer of 1940. A secret mission carried out by the Sky-Devils, Nick Fury and Red Hargrove would see the facility in Frankfurt bombed, freeing Steele from his captivity.[5] Active again for the first time in 20 years, Steele quickly caught up with the rest of the world and began killing Nazis. He would liberate a small German town before tracking down the Sky-Devils, Fury and Hargrove and joining them in their mission to bomb Nazi forces.[6] However, in the early days of 1941, Steele and the others would come back to the town that he has liberated earlier to find that everyone was slaughtered by the Red Skull. Although his allies were being pulled back to their respective countries, John vowed to avenge these people and kill the Red Skull.[7]

John Steele (American Soldier) (Earth-616)

Member of the Shadow Council.

The summer of '41, John Steele had tracked the Red Skull to a lab where Nazi scientists were busy attempting to duplicate Erskine's super-soldier formula. He would witness as the Skull outed Professor Eric Schmitt was a Jew and have him taken away to a concentration camp. One individual that Steele took specific notice of was the Atlantean rebel Merro (Aka the U-Man) who just recently allied himself with the Nazis[8]. By the fall of that year, Steele had tracked the Red Skull to a Nazi fortress where he spied a meeting between the Red Skull and Imperial Japanese forces. Snooping through their files, Steele learned that the Nazi-Atlantean-Japanese Axis were plotting two attacks on American soil: One on Pearl Harbor in Hawaii, and the other on Washington D.C.[9]

Steele fought his way to a Free French outpost and relayed the information to Nick Fury, warning him that the attack would happen on December 7th 1941. Steele's information would make American forces for the attack on Pearl Harbor and Washington D.C. While Captain America (Steve Rogers), Bucky and Namor succeeded in halting the attack on Washington, the Human Torch and Toro would only be able to lessen the devastation at Pearl Harbor. The two battles led to the United States finally entering World War II. John Steele continued to operate behind enemy lines slaying Nazi forces. Ultimately, shortly after the invasion of Normandy, Steele vanished without a trace.[10]

Modern Age

Steele has associated himself with the Shadow Council. Their goals have come into conflict with Steve Rogers's Secret Avengers. Steele is physically much stronger than Steve Rogers and the two appear to have developed a heated rivalry.[11] After being captured, Rogers and John Aman were able to reconnect with Steel through the Shadow Council's influence, and he became an ally.[12] However, he was later killed on a mission investigating Bagalia and Max Fury's plans for the Masters of Evil.[13]


Superhuman Strength: Steele displays superhuman strength to an unknown degree, although Steve Rogers did recognize that Steele was stronger than him.

Superhuman Durability: Steele's skin is extremely durable, similar to Luke Cage's and cannot be lacerated by conventional materials, his superhuman durability is such that he can withstand high caliber bullets, explosions, high temperatures and falls from great heights without sustaining injury.

Superhuman Stamina: Steele can exert himself at peak capacity for longer than a normal human before fatigue begins to affect him.

Enhanced Speed: In a fight between them Captain America recognizes Steele is faster than him.

Accelerated Healing: It is revealed that he is able to heal faster from injuries that would be fatal to normal humans, when he was stabbed and cut by Valkyrie's Sword during a fight, and recovered after a few days.

Slowed Aging: Although not immortal, John hasn't aged from his physical prime for the past three centuries.


Skilled Combatant: Steele is an expert in hand to hand combat and is capable of successfully engaging the likes of Captain America however his success may be due to his superior physical attributes.

Strength level

Steele possesses superhuman strength, while the exact limits are not known he is substantially stronger than Captain America. Steele is strong enough to bend tank guns.It is thought that Steele's strength is in the 2-25 ton range.

John Steele being a superstrong and durable soldier fighting in a war makes him Timely Comics's answer to Hugo Danner.

Discover and Discuss


Like this? Let us know!

Community content is available under CC-BY-SA unless otherwise noted.

Bring Your Marvel Movies Together