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Classic Merzah

Merzah the Mystic was just one of many costumed operatives active during World War II who were recruited into the United States military. The purpose was to enlist such individuals to publish propaganda in the form of comic books commissioned by the United States military and published by Timely Comics. These comics were used to convince Americans to support the war, and increase enlistment. Like many heroes recruited in this fashion, Merzah's fictional exploits were few as many of these early heroes died in combat.[1]

Presumably, much like the Young Allies,[2] the fictional exploits of Merzah may be based on actual events. For the sake of clarity, however, this article differentiates between the two.

Before the War

"Merzah the Mystic fought international spies and saboteurs. By his amazing powers of thought transmission and mental telepathy he protected his country from the inroads of communism and fascism!"

In his only solo recorded case, Merzah, his assistant, Diana Lanford, and his chauffeur, Jose Abejaron, hunted a spy named Satokata Matsu. After Sakota failed to kill Merzah by derailing the train he was riding on, he tracked Matsu to his hideout, where he and Diana were captured by the spy and taken to his secret country hideout.

Jose came to their rescue and accidentally alerted the spies of his presence. Leaving Diana and Jose to fight off the spies, Merzah chased after Matsu, who fatally crashed his car into a tree while trying to escape. Later, Merzah and Diana learned that they foiled Matsu's plot to steal the plans for a supposedly unsinkable ship.[3].

World War II

Merzah was one of the many super-human and costumed Americans who were drafted following the United States entry into World War II. He was one of the first recruits into Specialized Unit, Enhanced Soldiers (also known as the Crazy Sues). As an empath and telepath, Mezrah quickly became well-liked among his comrades due to his ability to understand their feelings and his respect for their privacy.

On August 7th, 1942, Merzah and his comrades were deployed to the Pacific Theater to fight the Imperial Japanese Army. While aboard an aircraft carrier, he sensed the thoughts of his teammate Captain Flame. Confiding in Flame, Merzah advised him that he was aware of his secret that he is trying to hide and promised to assist him in anyway that he could. Under the command of Captain America, the Crazy Sues were airdropped on Guadalcanal into heavy enemy fire. Engaging the enemy with their special talents proved to be more difficult than planned, until Captain Flame used his unique powers to save his comrades.

Following the battles success, Merzah and the Young Avenger helped console Captain Flame, who was horrified by the use of his powers to kill other human beings.[1] Left under the command of Sargent Byrd, Merzah and the others continued to fight through Guadalcanal without Captain America who was needed elsewhere. By the 23rd of August, they were caught under heavy enemy fire and suffered casualties. While Captain Flame used his power to once more destroy enemy troops, Merzah and the rest of the uninjured unit tried to pull their injured comrades away from harm.[4]

By 1944, Merzah and the rest of the Crazy Sues were pulled from the Pacific Theater to participate in the Battle of Normandy. Once more under Sargent Byrd's command, they were air dropped over the French village of Sainte Mere Egiles and clashed with Nazi forces. Following their victory, Merzah and the others celebrated along with the Invaders. When Captain Flame and American Ace left the party for a romantic interlude, Merzah detected that his fellow comrade Slow Motion Jones followed out after them, and witnessed them sharing a kiss in a back alley.[5] By July 7th, the unit was in Bretteville-sur-Laise, France, getting ready to participate in the liberation of the Nazi-occupied country. Noting Slow-Motion's growing unease about Captain Flame and American Ace's homosexual relationship, Merzah pulled Jones aside to talk to him.

Merzah explained that as an African-American in an all-white unit he should understand the discrimination Captain Flame would face if he was outed as a homosexual, due to the social standard of the time. Merzah asked Jones to keep the secret and not betray Captain Flame's trust, suggesting instead that Flame required respect and understanding, and if Jones continued to struggle over the situation, to try talking to the Captain. Following the liberation of France, the Crazy Sues were part of a victory parade and spent the passing days celebrating their victory. On August 29th, the group was celebrating in a Paris cafe. Spotting some young French women, Merzah used his powers to determine that they were single and available. Merzah was then witness to an uncomfortable moment when American Ace admitted he was married, prompting Captain Flame to storm off.

Soon after, the troop was on the move again, once more under the command of Captain America. They traveled the European countryside entering into Belgium. Once more pinned down by Nazi troops, Merzah tended to his wounded teammate, the Invisible Man, while Captain Flame once more saved them, this time shaken out of cowardice by Jones threatening to reveal his homosexuality to the others.[6]

In his last recorded appearance, Merzah was with the Crazy Sues as they entered Saarlautern, Germany, on December 6 1944. There, they were once more attacked by Nazi forces. When the Victory Boys were hit by a tank shell, the only survivor was Piotr, who was mortally wounded. Merzah, Young Avenger, and Archie the Gruesome attempted to give him medical aid. When they realized nothing could be done, Merzah agreed that the best thing to do for Piotr was to put him out of his misery and assisted in injecting him full of morphine while the Young Avenger shot him in the head.[7]

Merzah's subsequent activities with the Crazy Sues is unrecorded.[8].


Merzah the Mystic was next seen many years later in the Himalayas, training David Haller in the use of his powers on Charles Xavier's demand. He was killed, however, from damage caused by David's mental backlash at the death of his father.[9]

Powers and Abilities

Power Grid[10]
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  • Telepathy: Merzah could telepathically contact other people making them believe they were reading his wishes on a view screen.
  • Empathy
  • Precognition: Merzah appears to be psychic as he can sense impending danger.
  • Post-cognitive: Merzah can also use his psychic powers to see events in the past.



Merzah was armed with a rifle on occasion.

See Also

Links and References


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