Kent Blake started his career in law enforcement early, and was active as a New York City police officer as early as 1939. One of his most prolific cases was capturing a gang of payroll robbers who were active in New York City at the time.
Following the bombing of Pearl Harbor, the United States officially entered into World War II. Kent Blake was drafted into the military and was part of the 49th Bombardment Group aka the Flying Forts and began his training at McDill Airfield in Florida. After six months of training, Kent was sent to battle the Nazis and shipped to England. On August 17, 1942 Kent and his crew were forced to parachute out of their plane when it was struck by enemy fire. Blake was captured by the Nazis who tortured him to try and learn Allied secrets. Blake refused to talk no matter what the Nazis did to him. While imprisoned, he befriended another American soldier named Ralph Strong. The two secretly dug a tunnel out of their prison and managed to escape the prisoner of war camp. However, as they were fleeing, Nazi guards fatally shot Ralph. Before he died, Ralph gave Kent a message hidden in his shoe to carry back with him to the United States, asking him to deliver it to a man named Kruger in Washington, D.C.
Miraculously, Kent managed to survive and return to the Allies who returned him to Washington, D.C. to carry out Ralph's final request. When delivering the note to Kruger, Kruger informed Kent that he had successfully brought them much needed enemy secrets on microfilm slides, and that the note from Ralph highly recommended Kent Blake to become an agent of the Secret Service. Blake was given the little known position of Special Secret Agent and put under the sole responsibility of the Chief Executive of the agency.
With World War II over and the Allies the victors of the conflict, national attention then began focusing on various Communist nations such as the USSR and China, stemming from disagreements in the aftermath of the War. As the Cold War bloomed in the late 1940s and early 1950s, Kent Blake was assigned many cases in which he was charged with stopping espionage activities by various Communist spies.
After the War ended, Kent Blake was sent to occupied Berlin in April 1947, to investigate a counterfeit operation. This was his earliest recorded encounter with communist agents from Russia, who were attempting to use the phony money to ruin the American economy.
In July of 1950, Kent Blake was sent to investigate the Special Record Bureau's warnings that communist elements were attempting to sabotage the infrastructure of New York City. Blake prevented this plot from coming to fruition and eliminated communist elements that were operating from within the Special Record Bureau. On September 28, 1950, Kent Blake rooted out communist elements that were operating from within the Secret Service. On November 22, 1950, Kent was smuggled into Siberia to investigate claims that the Russians were forcing their citizens to work in slave mines. He purposely allowed himself to be captured and placed in such a camp to get the evidence he needed, subjecting himself to torture and intensive labor to collect the data. With the help of his allies on the inside, Kent then feigned his death in order to sneak out of the prison and return to the United States with the intelligence he gathered. In December of that same year, Kent was sent to Tibet to investigate why the Great Llama was suddenly encouraging his followers to turn against the western world. He uncovered that the Great Lama had been murdered and replaced with a Chinese lookalike, and exposed him.
On New Years Day 1951, Kent Blake was sent to Madrid, Spain to obtain a list of communist operatives that were active in the country from a US ambassador. When the ambassador was assassinated and the list stolen, Kent tracked down the communist agents responsible, recovered the documents, and turned them over to Washington. Later that month, Kent Blake investigated allegations that Herbert Maxwell of the National Board was betraying his country. Blake uncovered that it was really his coworker Christopher Trotter who was the true mastermind, using hypnotic drugs to make Maxwell do his bidding. Later, Blake posed as a sailor to investigate the crew of the Raven who were smuggling goods to communist China inside the bodies of pigs. Focusing on more domestic crime, Kent Blake later went undercover as Lefty Rafts in order to shatter a counterfeit operation run by Lulu Pastel. Focusing on espionage again, he prevented the international spy known as the Cat from stealing the plans for a new tank design. Blake was later smuggled into China to encourage the Nationalist resistance to fight the Chinese. He uncovered that their leader General Wing was really a spy for China and eliminated him, Blake then left the Nationalists under the charge of soldier of fortune Sam Bancroft. Returning home to the United States, Kent Blake investigated reports of Russian agents smuggling guns through the Florida Everglades in a plot to try and assassinate the President of the United States. Kent stopped this plot with the assistance of the local Seminole population.
In April of 1951, Kent Blake was sent to Greece where he went undercover in a prison to uncover a communist cell, almost facing execution by the jailers who turned out to be the ringleaders of the spy cell. Kent was later dispatched to the Balkan nation of Holtzberg where he insured that the government allied with the United States and established a trade deal for Uranium instead of siding with communist agents. Returning to the United States, Kent Blake went on vacation on Long Island. However, this did not prevent Blake from uncovering a communist scheme where spies were using an abandoned lighthouse to telegraph messages to a Chinese sub anchored off shore. Later, Kent Blake uncovered a counterfeit operation running out of Coney Island.
When the United States got involved in the Korean War, Kruger and Kent Blake were ordered to assist in military intelligence in the region in late 1951. Due to Kent's prior military experience during the war he was given the rank of Captain and was made a part of G-2 Military intelligence. While in Korea, Kent used his counter-espionage skills to stop various North Korean attacks during the conflict. His first mission in Korea was to rescue captured atomic scientist John Preston. Back at base, he uncovered the fact that USO showman the Mystic Marlos was sending secrets to Chinese forces and put a stop to it. Shortly thereafter, Kent Blake was paired with female bomb expert Bobby Ferrel to sabotage a Chinese nuclear weapon that was stationed on Doom Mountain. He was later put among a troop of soldiers, uncovering a spy in their ranks. Kent once more went behind enemy lines, posing as a Russian agent, to free yet another captured nuclear scientist named John Kelter. After helping American troops secure the city of Kuwong, Kent investigated the theft of American Saber jets, exposing communist spies among the pilots flying the planes. He was later assigned to work with Korean freedom fighter Lee Tsui. The pair were sent to destroy a Chinese factory where biological weapons were being engineered. The pair succeeded in destroying the factory but were both exposed by the contaminants inside. While Kent eventually recovered, Lee Tsui died.
When a communist spy posing as a news reporter succeeded in stealing a sample of a nuclear compound called Element X, Kent Blake was assigned to expose the spy and succeeded in preventing from Element X from falling into enemy hands. On another mission behind enemy lines, Kent recovered a map of supply lines for a new wave of Chinese troops, cutting it off and making it vulnerable to attack. Kent was later assigned to take out a Chinese listening post along with Kenneth Ormsby, son of his friend Major Pete Ormsby. Captured, the pair were tortured and Kenneth promised to talk, but died when Kent freed them and tried to escape. Unable to tell Pete that his son almost betrayed the military, he instead told him that his son died a hero.
Later, Kent was captured by the enemy and replaced by a Russian spy whose activities made Colonel Kruger believe that Kent had become a spy. Kent eventually broke himself free and brought the commanding officer of the Chinese base he was kept back to the American base, clearing his name. While out on patrol, Kent imparted the importance of taking prisoners for intelligence purposes to the soldiers he was working with. When the Chinese developed a new artillery cannon, Kent was put under the command of Captain Williams, who did not follow any of Blake's suggestions to carry out their mission subtly. However, when Williams was wounded, Kent took over command and destroyed the new weapon
On another mission Kent learned a major enemy troop movement, he and his troops use decoys using logs and their uniforms to trick enemy soldiers into stumbling into a bog so that they could escape back to base. Later Blake was assigned on a mission to steal a Chinese Mig fighter. In the process he lost all the other soldiers on the mission, including his friend Lieutenant Pete Russel when they were captured by enemy forces and taken to a secret airfield. In trying to escape his subordinates sacrificed their lives so Kent could steal a Mig and escape. After Kent is sent on a mission behind enemy lines to recover a list of war profiteers providing munitions to the Chinese. Along with him on the mission was Lieutenant Carlos Amenda, who sacrificed his life to get the list back to their superiors due to the fact that his father's company was one of the names on the list and he sought to redeem his family's name. Next Kent with the assistance of American soldier Clem Bellew wiped out an enemy fortification in a cave in order to allow American forces to advance. Then with the assistance of Chinese-American soldier Sergeant Harry Chan, Kent Blake located a unit of Chinese soldiers who had been using stolen American uniforms for various sneak attacks and radioed the location for American bombers. On another mission Blake risked his life crossing enemy lines to report an enemy troop concentration to Colonel Kruger, allowing American forces to wipe it out before it could attack. On his last mission on Korea, Kent Blake assisted in rescuing K Company, who were trapped behind enemy lines.
Return to Counter-Espionage
In 1953, Kent Blake was pulled from active duty in Korea by Colonel Kruger and reassigned back to his regular duties with the Secret Service in counter-espionage. His first mission sent Kent to Istanbul where he was under orders to locate and dismantle the spy organization run by the Snake, a female spy by the name of Myra Tangier. Although Blake managed to dismantle the spy organization Tangier managed to escape. Later Kent smuggled himself into Soviet-controlled Czechoslovakia to locate Dr. Gerhard who was being forced by the Soviets to develop a new form of Encephalitis that would kill most of the population, enslave the rest. Blake was captured and taken to the secret base where Gerhard was being kept and was injected with the viral strain. However, as luck would have it, Kent was one of the 10% of the world population that proved to be immune to the disease. Kent pretended to be a slave until he was able to rescue Gerhard and escape, blowing up the Soviet bioweapon lab in the process.
Kent Blake was next sent to Tel Aviv to locate Professor Braun, a scientist who went missing. He was sought after by both the United States and the Soviets as he had recently developed plans for a new H-Bomb. This mission led to another clash with Myra Tangier who sought to obtain the plans from her employers as well. Blake was able to locate Braun who had denounced his past life to live among a peaceful tribe of people in the desert, but turned over the plans to Blake. Blake once again failed to capture Myra Tangier as she fled the scene after failing her mission. Blake and Colonel Kruger next work together on Kent's next mission in New York City, where they investigated a Russian plot to manufacture rocket generators that were latter smuggled back into the Soviet Union. The pair expose diamond czar Joseph Wolfe as the mastermind behind the plot.
Kent continued to operate as a spy throughout the 50s however his activities are largely unrecorded.
For some unexplained reason, Kent Blake maintained his youth and continued working with the Secret Service well into the modern age. He married a woman named Sue and they had a relatively happy marriage.
Kent began investigating the theft of secret plans to a new military sub that were stolen by a common thug named Jimbo Ryan who was hired by Dr. Octopus. Blake's position was exposed and he was murdered by Jimbo and his men, who made the death look like a suicide. Because of this, his wife Sue was unable to cash out the life insurance policy Kent had gotten for her, putting her in a dire financial situation. Kent's unresting spirit continued to exist in the mortal world, seeking a way to avenge his death. When Spider-Man clashed with Ryan's gang later, Blake's spirit appeared to Parker posing as one of Kent Blake's colleagues. Using Peter's secret identity as leverage, Blake managed to convince Peter to go undercover and complete Kent's original mission. This eventually led to a clash between Spider-Man and Dr. Octopus at a construction site. When Ryan attempted to flee the scene, the spirit of Kent Blake appeared before him frightening Ryan and causing him to fall off the scaffolds of the building. Spider-Man saved Ryan's life and turned him over to the police, allowing Dr. Octopus to escape. In policy custody, Ryan confessed to killing Kent Blake thus allowing Kent's spirit to finally rest and his wife entitlement to his insurance policy.
Powers and Abilities
Somehow, Kent Blake managed to remain youthful well into the modern age. The reason for this is unknown.
As an unresting spirit, Kent Blake had the ability to become visible to the living and communicate with them, although he could not physically interact with the living world.
- In many of Kent Blake's early adventures the narratives stated that the name Kent Blake was an alias and that his cases were true stories from the real secret service. This of course was just sensationalism to entice readers to buy the stories and were total works of fiction as was identified in later issues when Atlas began printing a version of the common fictional character disclaimer found in most forms of entertainment ("The characters in this story are entirely fictitious, any similarity to anyone living or dead is purely coincidental"). As such, Kent Blake has been retconned as the real name of the character, as is evident in his last appearance in Amazing Spider-Man Annual #13.