Quentin Beck, the son of Elmore and Henrietta Beck, was born in Riverside, California. From a very young age, Quentin had a love for movies and special effects. During this period, Quentin became good friends with his cousin, Maguire Beck. As Maguire tells it, Quentin's father was something of a loser. However, Maguire's father encouraged his nephew's interests, giving him his first movie camera. With the camera given to him by his Uncle Vinnie, Quentin made his own home-movies and learned how to create stop-motion special effects. Thinking his son was wasting his time, Elmore Beck smashed the camera. Still, this did not dissuade Beck, who continued to learn the art of practical special effects. After high school, Beck attended the Massachusetts Institute of Technology where he developed technical knowhow that helped him solidify his career aspirations.
By the time he had become an adult, Quentin Beck became an accomplished special effects expert as well as a stuntman. However, Beck grew bored with his career and frustrated with the lack of recognition he got from his work. In an attempt to get the fame that he craved, Beck tried to become an actor but had very little success. It was around this time that Spider-Man was making headlines as a media sensation. The wall-crawler's agent, Maxie Shiffman hired Beck to come up with special effects for a television appearance. Although Quentin insisted that Shiffman use fake props, the promoter wanted real dangers. Beck compiled but warned that he would take any responsibility if anything wrong happened. Sure enough, Spider-Man arrived in late to practice the stunts and the studio audience was almost injured had it not been for the web-slinger's quick thinking. Having grown fed-up with his stagnant career, Quentin became inspired when one of his co-workers jokingly suggested that he use his special effects skill to become a costumed villain and kill Spider-Man. Another motivator for his desire to show the world was the fact that Beck wrote what he thought was the greatest screenplay ever written. However, this too was rejected by his peers.
Quentin Beck first delved into crime when he allied himself with Phineas Mason, the criminal inventor known as the Tinkerer. Using his repair shop as a front, the Tinkerer planted bugs in the electronic equipment of prominent inventors and government officials in order to steal their secrets and sell them to the highest bidder. As a cover for their activities, Beck used his special effects skill to make it look like this scheme was being carried out by alien invaders. He created life-like alien costumes as well as a phony alien craft. Unfortunately, the scheme was ruined by Spider-Man, forcing the "aliens" to flee. Have successfully escaped from the wall-crawler, Quentin Beck vowed to beat him one day if it was the last thing he ever did.
Returning to Hollywood, Quentin Beck went back to his old job. However, when one of his stunts horribly burned an actor he was blacklisted from the industry. It was then he began developing the weaponized special effects that he would use throughout his career as a super-villain. Deciding to get his revenge against Spider-Man, Beck began developing devices that could replicate the web-slinger's abilities. However, he was finding it a challenge to replicate Spider-Man's wall-crawling ability. He then arranged a meeting with his idol, legendary special effects artist Ray Bradhaus. Bradhaus continued to use practical special effects even though the major studios were favoring digital special effects. One effect, used in an Italian horror film, appeared to pull of the stunt he wanted to recreate. Gassing Ray and putting on his new costume, Beck went down into the basement where he discovered that Bradhaus was actually a practitioner and that the demonic creature in Ray's last film was a real creature. Beck was able to slay the demon using his special effects and was satisfied that he succeeded Bradhaus as a master of special effects. Quentin took on the name "Mysterio" taking the name from of Il Mysterio after Bradhaus' last film.
Mysterio's Early Exploits
Confident in his abilities, Beck returned to New York City to get his revenge against Spider-Man. His scheme involved using his abilities to pose as Spider-Man and commit a series of robberies. By this time, Spider-Man has become a costumed crime-fighter but was feared and mistrusted by the general public. This distrust of the wall-crawler was amplified by the negative editorials written by Daily Bugle publisher J. Jonah Jameson. Exploiting Jonah's hatred of the web-slinger, Quentin -- as Mysterio -- vowed to bring Spider-Man to justice. However, Mysterio was eventually defeated by the wall-crawler who also found evidence clearing his name. After his arrest, Quentin confessed to framing Spider-Man, clearing his name.
Shortly after this, Mysterio was recruited by Doctor Octopus as a charter member of the Sinister Six a group of Spider-Man's most deadly foes. This group also included the Vulture, Kraven the Hunter, Electro, and the Sandman. Each member wanted the opportunity to kill the wall-crawler by themselves and went up against him one at a time. Mysterio was the third foe that Spider-Man fought that day. Despite his robotic duplicates of the X-Men, Mysterio was quickly defeated as were the rest of the Sinister Six.
Once free again, Beck decided to try and convince Spider-Man that he was suffering a mental breakdown in the hopes of exposing his identity. To this end, he created the identity of Doctor Ludwig Rinehart he convinced Daily Bugle publisher J. Jonah Jameson to publish a story warning the wall-crawler of this problem. To further convince Spider-Man to seek out Ludwig's "assistance", he developed devices that would project illusions of some of the wall-crawler's other foes. Thinking he was losing his mind, Spider-Man came to "Rinehart" for treatment. Mysterio almost succeeded in unmasking Spider-Man had his background not been investigated by Frederick Foswell, a reporter at the Daily Bugle. Learning that Rinehart was a fraud, J. Jonah Jameson confronted him directly, inadvertently foiling Beck's plans.
His constant defeats at the hands of Spider-Man caused Quentin to develop low self-esteem. In desperation, he tried to reconnect with his past by visiting his old childhood home. All this did was stir up sad memories of childhood. However, he did reconnect with Betsy Schneider an old childhood friend. Down on his luck, Quentin was inspired to become Mysterio again after reading another one of J. Jonah Jameson's editorials about Spider-Man. He then tricked the publisher into thinking he had died and was banished to hell, using an old film studio to facilitate this illusion.
With his confidence growing, Mysterio then sent robots based on the Sinister Six against Spider-Man, who was now searching for the missing Jameson. He also revealed himself to Betsy, who knew he was Mysterio all along. Not only was she impressed with what he had become, but she also admitted that she had long-standing feelings for him as well. Upon returning to his hideout, Mysterio discovered that director Cecil Vigarro was now using the studio to film his latest movie starring Joe Smith. Worse, Spider-Man managed to track down the hideout and free J. Jonah Jameson. Furious, Mysterio set the studio to explode and escaped with Betsy atop a flying sphinx. Betsy was horrified that Quentin would commit murder unaware that both Spider-Man and Joe Smith had survived.
Things started to fall apart when he learned that Schneider feigned interest in Quentin in order to write a book about him. Furious, he used a virtual reality projector to make Times Square look like ancient Egypt. Despite this, Mysterio was eventually defeated thanks to Spider-Man and Joe Smith. Adding insult to injury, Smith and Schneider fell in love with each other during the whole affair.
When the Wizard learned that his old foe the Human Torch was to star in a film, he sought an ally in destroying his enemy. To this end, he enlisted the aid of Mysterio. The pair then conspired to pit Spider-Man against the Human Torch in the hopes that their enemies would eliminate each other. Although the pair succeeded in luring the two heroes to Hollywood, Spider-Man and the Torch quickly exposed their schemes and turned Mysterio and the Wizard over to the authorities.
Working solo again, Mysterio threatened to cause a major disaster in order to draw out Spider-Man. The wall-crawler accepted his challenge. During the battle, Beck knocked out Spider-Man using a powerful gas. When Spider-Man woke up, he was led to believe that Mysterio managed to shrink him down to size and trap him on a model of an amusement park. Spider-Man quickly deduced that Mysterio was actually operating from a massive animatronic body and that he wasn't shrunk down in size at all. Easily defeating Beck once more, Spider-Man left him webbed up for the authorities once again. On the loose again, Mysterio attempted to rob token booth at a subway station. He was delivered another humiliating defeat at the hands of Spider-Man.
While in prison, Quentin Beck decided to change his methods to commit crimes. He befriended his cellmate Daniel Berkhart and taught him everything he needed to know to take up the mantle of Mysterio once he got out of prison. Beck then staged an escape attempt and was gunned down by the guard. Although he survived, Quentin Beck was declared legally dead. With Berkhart taking over as Mysterio, it allowed Quentin to start a new criminal enterprise without interference.
Restwell Nursing Home Scheme
Resuming his false identity of Ludwig Rinehart, Quentin took over operations of the Restwell Nursing Home on Long Island. This allowed him to bilk the retirees who lived there out of their savings. Incidentally, at the time, Peter Parker's Aunt May had taken up residence at the home. May Parker's residency also attracted the burglar who murdered her husband years earlier. This burglar, unaware that "Rinehart" was actually Mysterio, took the administrator hostage. The burglar had a keen interest in May Parker, but couldn't carry out his scheme with her nephew, Peter, constantly visiting her. He then forced "Ludwig" to help him solve this problem. Beck decided to play along with the burglar's demands until he could determine what he was after.
To this end, Beck managed to make it look like May Parker had suddenly died. When Peter was informed, "Rinehart" tried to console Peter. However, Parker was so distraught he -- as Beck hoped -- left him to deal with all the arrangements. Even though he succeeded in stopping Peter's regular visits, Beck was still unable to get the burglar to reveal his secret. Growing tired of pretending to be a helpless prisoner, Beck used his abilities to take control of the situation. He subdued the burglar and took him prisoner. By this time, Peter Parker had deduced that Rinehart was his old foe Mysterio and came to Restwell to face him. In their initial battle, Mysterio had the upper hand and left the hero to drown in the retirement home's in-ground pool. It was at this time, Mysterio had learned that the burglar had rented out the old Parker home and deduced that whatever he was looking for was there. After failing to get any answers out of the crook, Mysterio decided to go and search for himself. Meanwhile, Spider-Man -- unaware of the burglar's involvement -- figured that Mysterio was the individual who recently trashed his family home. Going there to search for clues he faced Mysterio again. The villain managed to hit the wall-crawler with a dart filled with a lethal dose of tranquilizers and left him for dead. However, Spider-Man later survived, stopped the burglar, and rescued Aunt May. As it turned out the burglar was looking for Dutch Malone's long lost stash that was hidden in the Parker home years before they owned it. Incidentally, the money had been eaten by silverfish a long time ago.
Unaware of this development, Mysterio tried to go after May Parker again. Reusing his old alien effects, Mysterio kidnapped Peter Parker in the hopes of learning the location of the lost money. Although pretending to be an alien himself, Mysterio quickly drops the pretense while interrogating Peter Parker, who sees right through the deception. Learning that the villain wants, Peter is unable to convince his old enemy that the Dutch Malone's money is long gone. After being battered with illusions, Peter pretended to pass out and was then locked in a room. This gave him the opportunity to change into Spider-Man and ultimately defeat Mysterio.
When Mysterio next faced Spider-Man he had just recently obtained a new black-and-white costume that, unknown to anyone at the time, was actually an alien symbiote. When he tried to rob a bank, he accidentally caused the death of the bank teller. He was distraught by this and after visiting her grave, he decided to stop being a villain. However, Spider-Man had seen Quentin at the graveyard and assaulted him at his hideout. Mysterio managed to escape and saw Spider-Man's mysterious costume transform into civilian clothes, which intrigued him. He then paid an ex stuntman to knock out Spider-Man and get a piece of the suit. However, after Spider-Man was knocked out, the suit retaliated by killing the stuntman. Mysterio than sought to blackmail Black Cat with evidence about her involvement with the Kingpin, which Mysterio got thanks to his friendship with Kingpin's scientist, Johnathon Ohnn. He told her to bring a piece of Spider-Man's new suit or else he would reveal to Spider-Man where she had gotten her powers. She was successful in obtaining a piece of the suit for him, but when he had Johnathon to analyze the piece, the symbiote-controlled Spider-Man arrived to retrieve the piece and knock out Mysterio and Kingpin's men. After being unable to find the piece, the suit left, while Kingpin had his men tie Mysterio up for interrogation. The piece of the symbiote bonded to Mysterio and overpowered Kingpin and his men, Mysterio reveling in his new power and seeking to steal the rest of Spider-Man's black suit. When battling Spider-Man atop a train, Black Cat intervened and helped Spider-Man. With Spider-Man unconscious, the symbiote took over Spider-Man and was able to get the piece back from Mysterio after he used a flame weapon, which separated Mysterio from it. Mysterio tried to escape using a dinosaur illusion and smoke, but he was arrested by Spider-Man and Black Cat.
From here, Mysterio suffered some of the most humiliating defeats of his career. Later, Beck managed to escape prison by faking a fire in his cell and tricking the guards into taking him to the hospital. Mysterio then held the staff of the Daily Bugle hostage in order to force the paper to issue another challenge to Spider-Man. Since Peter Parker worked at the Bugle, he quickly changed into Spider-Man to face his foe. Spider-Man's attempts to stop Mysterio were briefly interrupted by the Chief Examiner who came to test the wall-crawler on behalf of his masters. After the Examiner got what he came for, Spider-Man quickly disarmed Mysterio and turned him over to the authorities. Later, during the early days of the Inferno crisis, Mysterio tricked Spider-Man into thinking that an innocent person had died on his watch. As expected, this shook the wall-crawler's confidence. However, Mysterio revealed his scheme when he attacked Spider-Man next. No longer saddled with guilt, Spider-Man quickly defeated Mysterio once more.
He was next hired by the Headmen to kidnap the She-Hulk. Using a variation on an old theme, Mysterio made it appear that She-Hulk's penthouse was being invaded by Toad Men. Although She-Hulk saw through this illusion, Mysterio succeeded in capturing her. After getting paid, Mysterio was spotted by Spider-Man who forced his enemy's car off the road. After learning that Headmen paid him in counterfeit money, Mysterio ratted them out, allowing Spider-Man to save She-Hulk. It was at this time that Quentin reached out to his cousin, Maguire, and taught her everything he knew.
Attempting another fraud scheme, Mysterio attempted to force the tenants out of a co-op building. He used his illusions to frighten holdouts by making them think their building was haunted. Unfortunately, Beck had the misfortune of choosing the co-op of James and Margaret Power. Unknown to anyone, the Power's children were secretly the young heroes known as the Power Pack. Investigating the ghost sightings, the young heroes exposed Mysterio's scheme, delivering him a humiliating defeat. This last defeat caused a significant blow to Mysterio's reputation.
Return of the Sinister Six
Sometime after this, Mysterio was tracked down by Doctor Octopus who convinced him to rejoin his Sinister Six. Mysterio joined the Vulture, Electro, Sandman, and the Hobgoblin in this new incarnation of Octavius' team. The Doctor's scheme was to steal a satellite being launched by Cordco Inc. and use it to threaten to poison the entire world. He then sent Mysterio and Hobgoblin to steal a sample of Burundite, which Octopus claimed could make them immune to the poison. Despite an attempt to stop them by Spider-Man, Mysterio and Hobgoblin succeeded in their mission. Mysterio and the rest of the Sinister Six then attacked the Cordco facility on launch day. Although Sandman betrayed them to help Spider-Man, they still succeeded in launching the satellite. That's when Doctor Octopus revealed his true plan: In reality, instead of threatening to poison the planet, he intended to unleash a chemical that would make ingesting cocaine lethal, with Burundite as the only known cure. With this, Doctor Octopus intended to blackmail the world's wealthy and powerful -- many of them addicted to cocaine -- into giving him their wealth. Furious over this betrayal, Mysterio and the others abandoned Doctor Octopus whose plan was eventually foiled by Spider-Man.
Seeking revenge against Doctor Octopus, Mysterio and the others forced Sandman to join them in going after their former leader. However, Sandman tipped off Spider-Man before the confrontation. However, the Doctor allowed this reunion to occur so he could offer his former teammates an opportunity to be a part of his next scheme. When Spider-Man attempted to stop his old enemies, the sudden arrival of the Hulk allowed the Sinister Six to make their escape. Seeking to obtain weapons from another dimension, the Sinister Six invaded a private research firm that developed a portal to this dimension. Before they could launch their next attack, Spider-Man followed them to their hideout and once again attempted to stop the Sinister Six, but interference from the anti-terrorist known as Solo hampered efforts to stop them. When the Sinister Six did make their next move, Spider-Man enlisted the aid of the cyborg known as Deathlok to help him. Once again, Spider-Man was unable to stop his enemies, who succeeded in obtaining the other-dimensional weapons. With tensions rising in the group, Doctor Octopus then has the Sinister Six attack a secret Hydra satellite control center. This attack is opposed by Spider-Man who had then enlisted the aid of the Hulk, Ghost Rider and Sleepwalker to assist him. Anticipating further interference, Doctor Octopus then summoned his true sixth member, the alien creature known as Gog. Initially having the advantage, the battle turned against the Sinister Six with the arrival of Nova, Solo, and the Fantastic Four. Mysterio and the others were quickly defeated and then turned over to the authorities.
Not long after this, Mysterio returned to basics and used Spider-Man's past connection to Maxie Shiffman to try and get revenge against the wall-crawler. This time, Mysterio attempted to trick the wall-crawler into thinking his entire career was nothing more than a series of movies. However, as usual, Spider-Man saw right through these illusions and defeated Mysterio once more. Not long after this, Harry Osborn, then the Green Goblin, seemingly perished battling Spider-Man due to an impure version of his father's Goblin formula. However, Harry survived, and his father Norman Osborn had his son secreted away. Wishing to have the world believe that Harry was dead, Norman hired Mysterio to assist him with this deception. Mysterio then created a bio-duplicate of Harry's body. However, this was under the condition that Norman pretends that his son was dead in order to maintain the illusion. Harry was later kept under seclusion in Europe for a number of years thereafter.
Mysterio was one of the villains who traveled to Canada to bid in the Brass Bishop's sale of the recently deceased Silver and Auric. This ghoulish auction was interrupted by Alpha Flight and Spider-Man. Returning to the United States, Mysterio attempted another fraud scheme. Using an actor named Phil to pose as Spider-Man, he allowed himself to be unmasked so they they could license out Spider-Man's likeness and make a killing selling authorized merchandise as well as bilk people out of charity money collected by a non-profit organization set up by Phil. Ultimately, Spider-Man tracked down his impostor and exposed Mysterio's scheme.
Funeral for an Octopus
Not long after this, a mysterious being named Kaine murdered Doctor Octopus. After Octavius' funeral, Otto's last surviving relative Elias Hargrove was forced to enlist Mysterio and the Sinister Six in recovering Otto's mechanical arms from the government. While being briefed on their mission, they were interrupted by the Scarlet Spider, a clone of Spider-Man. They managed to evade capture and attack the government facility where Mysterio and the others were opposed by Spider-Man. The wall-crawler gained the upper hand by utilizing the tentacles of Doctor Octopus to force them back. Things continued to go south when Kaine arrived and seemingly slew Mysterio.
In reality, this was not Mysterio at all, but a robotic construct that Beck controlled remotely. It was by this time that Hargrove realized that the final will recorded by Otto was a fraud and confronted his lawyer about it. As it turned out, the "lawyer" was actually Mysterio in disguise and manipulated Hargrove into reforming the Sinister Six to attack the facility and steal back the mechanical arms. In reality, this was nothing more than a ruse that would allow Mysterio to secretly steal his true goal, a disc full of useful data. However, before he could decrypt the data, Mysterio was attacked by the Scarlet Spider once more. Realizing that he was fighting a losing battle, Mysterio activated the self-destruct device on the disc in order to cover his escape.
When Kaine later murdered the Grim Hunter, it led Hobgoblin to believe that it was open season on Spider-Man foes. He recruited a new Sinister Seven which included Mysterio, Electro, the Vulture, the Shocker, the Beetle, and Scorpia. They intended to track down and kill Kaine before he could kill them. Although they succeeded in drawing out Kaine, their patrol of the city also attracted the attention of the Scarlet Spider. Seeing that this was a losing battle, Mysterio fled the scene while the Spider defeated his teammates and sent Kaine into hiding.
Creating a new costume for himself, Mysterio then hatched his next scheme. He hired the mercenary known as Armada to steal a new experimental Digital Imagery Transmission Chip from Centennial University. Although this attempt was interrupted by the new Spider-Man, Armada was successful. With the DIT Chip in his possession, Mysterio learned how to use it to make his thoughts appear on television and soon began plotting his next scheme to destroy Spider-Man. Then, in the guise of Randolph Hines, Beck purchased a local television station. Through this station he began broadcasting a new television channel called Mystery Vision. Those who watched the programming on that channel quickly became addicted to watching it.
Soon, Mystery Vision became the most watched television station in the region. When Spider-Man investigated the channel's sudden popularity he almost became enthralled by its broadcast and learned that its hypnotic power is the work of the recently stolen DIT chip. Going to Mystery Vision's headquarters, Mysterio revealed himself and his grand scheme, to create the greatest entertainment ever with nothing more than his imagination. To further this end, he tricked Spider-Man into wearing placing Mystery Vision lenses onto his mask making him see realistic illusions run rampant in the city. While Spider-Man was otherwise distracted, Mysterio freed Armada from police custody and sent him against the wall-crawler. However, in the ensuing battle, the Mystery Vision lenses were shattered, allowing Spider-Man see clearly again. While Spider-Man took time to recover from the battle, Mysterio reveled in the fame that he had craved for so long. Unfortunately, this was short lived as Spider-Man developed a means of tracking his signal with a DIT tracking device developed by its creator. Spider-Man located and smashed the transmitter stopping the hypnotic signal. Without this, popularity for Mystery Vision quickly came to an abrupt stop and Mysterio was taken into custody.
Not long after this Mysterio and Armada broke out of prison and attempted to destroy Spider-Man again. This time, Mysterio reused his old shrinking scheme to make the web-slinger believe that he was trapped in the bedroom of a little boy. However, this only disorientated the web-head for a short period of time. However, by the time Spider-Man had smashed this scheme, Mysterio had fled the scene, leaving a robot duplicate behind in his place. When many of New York's heros were seemingly slain battling Onslaught, Mysterio decided to take advantage of this loss. With the help of Garrison Peabody, he set up yet another fraud scheme by setting up a phony superhero insurance scheme. To convince people to buy into the plan, Mysterio used his illusions to make it look like villains were attacking the city. However, this scheme was later exposed by Daredevil. Although Peabody was arrested, Beck managed to evade capture once again.
After another incarceration, Beck was imprisoned at Ravencroft. Allegedly, it was here that he became sick and was told that after years of being exposed to the chemicals used in his special effects he had developed a brain tumor and lung cancer. Unfortunately, these illnesses were beyond operable and he was given a year to live. The courts deemed that Beck was no longer a threat and he was released from prison to live out the rest of his very short life. Furious that he never got the recognition for his work that he always wanted, Mysterio decided to carry out one last grand scheme to leave his mark on the world. By this time he was led to believe that the Spider-Man he fought in the past was an impostor and decided that he needed to find another worthy target. Although he was correct in assessing that he was fighting a different Spider-Man (in fact, Peter Parker's clone) Beck was apparently unaware that the real Spider-Man had been back for quite some time. Remembering his previous encounter with Daredevil, he decided to choose him as his target since he viewed the Man Without Fear as a second rate hero, much as he was viewed as a second rate villain. First, he paid the Kingpin a large sum of money to learn everything about Daredevil. Fisk told Beck everything about Daredevil including that he was secretly Matt Murdock, the nature of his powers, and his personal life.
He studied Daredevil and his religious upbringing and began formulating a scheme to drive Daredevil mad. Using his remaining fortune, he began constructing everything he needed to facilitate this endeavor. He found a young girl named Gwyneth and had her artificially inseminated in secret. When she gave birth to her daughter, he then had her parents murdered before they could prove the parentage and used drugs to convince Gwyneth that the child was an immaculately conceived divine child and that forces sought to harm the child. As he planned, Gwyneth took the child to Matt Murdock, telling him about the child's alleged divinity and that she believed he could be trusted since she knew he was Daredevil. Setting his plans into motion.
A Test of Faith
Beck then murdered Jonathan Curtain whom he admired and whose fortune he needed to pull off the rest of his scheme. Taking Curtain's face, Beck, under the guise of Nicholas Macabes, claimed to be part of a timeless organization called Sheol that was charged with preventing Armageddon from happening. He then claimed that the child in Murdock's care was actually the Antichrist and that he needed to turn the child over to him in order to prevent it from bringing about the end of the world. He also warned Murdock that the longer he kept the child a curse would be put upon him and his loved ones. As he left, "Macabes" handed Murdock a holy cross. This cross was laced with drugs that affected Matt's state of mind. Further, he had his hired men capture Gwyneth as she tried to flee the city. She was then murdered and buried the body where it wouldn't be found. He also employed Lydia McKenzie, an actress looking for a divorce, to seduce Matt's partner Foggy Nelson. She then slipped Murdock a drug that caused him to hallucinate and think she was a demon, and seemingly shove her out a window. In reality, however, Beck made sure she died of a drug overdose and pushed her out himself. Worse, while posing as a doctor, Quentin convinced Karen Page, Matt's sometime girlfriend, that she was infected with an autoimmune disease after her years as a drug addict and a career in adult films. When he couldn't decide if he could kill the child or not, Daredevil's decision was taken away by his former partner, the Black Widow who took it into her care.
While Matt was busy dealing with Foggy's legal problems, Beck -- as Macabes -- paid a visit to Karen Page and convinced her that the child in Matt's care was the reason she developed her illness after so many years of being clean. He then had his minions capture and torture Daredevil, to further disorientate him and convince him that the battle over the child was one of religious proportions. After fighting with the Widow, Matt decided to leave the child in the care of his mother Sister Maggie. Meanwhile, "Macabes" hired Bullseye to follow the next part of his plan. Daredevil sought the assistance of Doctor Strange and learned that there was nothing mystical about what was going on. Tragically, he was unable to later stop Bullseye from kidnapping the baby, murdering Karen Page in the process. When Daredevil finally tracked down Macabes' hideout, Mysterio set a series of traps and minions before finally revealing himself.
With the child locked in a vacuum sealed chamber, Mysterio detailed his plan in the hopes that his grand deception would finally push Daredevil over the edge so the hero would kill him. However, Daredevil resisted the urge, realizing that it was exactly what Beck wanted in the end. With the child free and his death denied, Mysterio took the cowardly way out and shot himself in the head.
After Quentin Beck's apparent death, he was succeeded by a number of other illusionists. Daniel Berkhart took up Mysterio's identity once more to honor Beck. His cousin, Maguire also began working with Berhart at this time, taking on the identity of Mad Jack for a time. Another illusionist calling himself the Conundrum also surfaced at this time. He claimed that he was also trained by the original Mysterio. Yet another Mysterio successor was Francis Klum.
Shortly after Beck's death, both Berkhart and Maguire plotted to get revenge against those who wronged Quentin Beck. Those targeted were Spider-Man, Daredevil, J. Jonah Jameson, Joe Smith, and Betsy Schneider. Ultimately, this scheme was foiled by Spider-Man and Daredevil.
However, despite his apparent suicide, there has been conflicting reports about what really happened. There has been compelling evidence that suggests that Quentin Beck had actually died as he was seen in the afterlife. On the hand, Mysterio has later claimed that he actually faked his death. More recently, a mysterious entity known only as "Kindred" has also made claims that support the fact that Mysterio did in fact die and was later given a second lease on life.
If his suicide is to be believed, then Beck ended up in the lower depths of the afterlife. There a deceased villain known only as the Pitiful One discovered a strange clay called creme du profundis that could bring the dead back to life for a brief period of time. He recruited Mysterio, Kraven the Hunter, Miss America, and the Anarchist, all of whom sought to be resurrected, particularly after hearing how other super-humans had managed to cheat death. The get their message out to Doctor Strange, the Pitiful One and his minions attacked the United Nations building before being returned to the hereafter. Instead of helping, Doctor Strange instead decided to look for deceased allies to help stop his scheme.
While Doctor Strange enlisted the mutant known as Dead Girl and others, the Pitiful One apparently recruited Strange's former mentor the Ancient One. They then kidnapped Strange's assistant Wong. Mysterio assisted the Ancient One in torturing Wong until the servant revealed the location of Doctor Strange's physical body, before being sent back to the afterlife to hamper Strange and Dead Girl's efforts to recruit allies. After his defeat, Mysterio apparently abandoned his attempts to be restored to life. Ultimately, the Pitiful One's scheme was thwarted by Strange and his allies.
It is important to note that this may not have been the real Quentin Beck, and possibly an impostor. This is possible given the fact that a number of the individuals who were to believed to be deceased at the time and present here were not actually dead.
Shortly after this, Peter Parker revealed his true identity to the world. This prompted Francis Klum to become Mysterio and attack Parker at Midtown High School, where he worked as a teacher. As Klum's scheme was unfolding he was confronted by an apparently supernatural Quentin Beck, who was unimpressed by his successor's performance. After proving his superiority over Klum, Beck explained that his masters sent him here to observe the coming conflict between Klum, Spider-Man, and Quentin's other successor, Daniel Berkhart. As the two Mysterio successors later fought it out with Spider-Man, Beck ran into Miss Arrow and could sense that she was not who she seemed. He then decided to reveal to her that he was not what he seemed either, removing his mask and revealing that a portion of his head was missing from his self-inflicted gunshot wound.
Beck then revealed that he had been cursed to living an un-life by his masters, explaining that God dislikes individuals who commit suicide. Having some idea that however, Miss Arrow's superiors have a mutual goal to his own. He told Arrow that she must help him in his mission to convince Peter Parker to continue teaching at Midtown High as it was not yet his time to leave the school. With that, Beck disappeared, leaving Miss Arrow to do whatever she was fated to do next. In the aftermath, Berkhart was arrested and Klum was murdered by Arrow, who decided to convince Parker to remain at the school.
After this incident, Mysterio was restored to full life and stripped of his supernatural powers. If the claims of his resurrection by Kindred are true, it has likely happened after his appearance at Midtown High.
As payment for his service, Kindred opened a portal to another world for Mysterio; a world where Spider-Man was still a teenager. Deciding to use this world as his playground, Beck created a device to keep the portal opened as well as a number of android avatars that he controlled remotely from his native reality.
Through his android, Mysterio appeared as a master criminal who committed four unhindered crimes by having a police technician set up surveillance equipment on the police department. The NYPD's police captain Frank Quaid asked Spider-Man to aid them in finding the crook who was somehow able to stay ahead of his unit. Mary Jane Watson, Spider-Man's love interest, figured out how the criminal was getting away with his crimes after explaining the situation to her. With his scheme blown wide open, Mysterio briefly clashed with Spider-Man but was forced to retreat, vowing to get revenge on the wall-crawler for this defeat.
The New Kingpin of Crime
Following the Ultimatum crisis, Mysterio took advantage of the situation to take over the New York City underworld. To this end, he ambushed the Kingpin and threw the mobster from his office to his death. After killing Fisk, Mysterio witnessed the Black Cat who was waiting to assassinate Fisk herself. Upon being spotted, the Cat fled the scene. Mysterio then took to social media to gloat about killing Wilson Fisk, telling viewers that he planned on taking whatever he wanted, moving forward. As if by fate, the public started calling him Mysterio, a name he obviously accepted willingly. His next scheme was to rob New York City's Federal Reserve Bank by releasing a hallucinogen in the middle of the city as a distraction. However, he was too busy taking photos of his haul that Spider-Man was able to interrupt him, forcing Mysterio to flee the scene. In order to defeat Spider-Man, Mysterio created the illusion that the Hulk was attacking the Queensboro Bridge. As expected, Spider-Man raced in to save the people put in danger from this attack. With his trap sprung, Mysterio knocked out Spider-Man. With his cell phone in hand, Mysterio prepared to take a photo of Spider-Man unmasked and post it on the internet.
Before Mysterio was able to unmask Spider-Man, however, the mysterious Shroud came to Spider-Man's rescue. During the fight, Mysterio was forced to retreat again when he was apparently unmasked by the Shroud. However, the villain later discovered some of Spider-Man's blood on his damaged armor, giving him inspiration for his next move.
Using this, he built a Spider-Slayer able to track down Spider-Man's genetic scent. The Slayer eventually confronted Peter Parker at Midtown High School where it was destroyed by Shroud and the Human Torch. Despite this, Mysterio still possessed Peter Parker's DNA, and had filmed the entire event via the Slayer's camera - footage that revealed Spider-Man's true identity. Unfortunately for the villain, the authorities arrived just as he was about to upload the video to the internet. With capture imminent, Mysterio aborted this scheme and detonated his headquarters.
The Black Cat later returned to Wilson Fisk's office to steal what she originally came for. However, she was caught in the act by Mysterio who offered her a chance to join his growing empire. She refused and was forced to retreat after realizing she was no match for him. What he found was the powerful artifact known as the Zodiac Key. Surprisingly, Mysterio then took it to the Black Cat, offering to sell it to her. However, this was all a ruse to show her that the alien device was far too powerful for her to control. After Felicia accidentally decimated an entire city block, Mysterio retook the weapon for himself, just as Spider-Man and Iron Man arrived on the scene to investigate.
Mysterio used the key to destroy Iron Man's armor, leaving Tony momentarily out of the fight. Spider-Man, Black Cat and Mysterio fought over the key. When Tony Stark recovered, he suddenly realized that Mysterio was using solendeerie technology and deactivated his avatar. With Mysterio neutralized, Iron Man took the Zodiac Key to turn over to SHIELD.
Ends of the Earth
After his failures on Earth-1610, Mysterio returned his attention back to his native reality of Earth-616. He rejoined the Sinister Six to help Doctor Octopus with his plans of stealing technology. He also participated in the battle against Intelligencia, where his group stole the Zero Cannon and almost wiped out the whole rival team.
Later, Doctor Octopus, in his plan to be remembered as the man who saved Earth, offered the chance to stop the Greenhouse effect, as well as speed it up, using a special device connected with different satellites on the orbit. Disguised as Al Gore, Chameleon tried to accelerate the decision of world's leaders about the matter, but was uncovered by Spider-Man, who irrupted the scene along the Avengers. When the Chameleon was freed, he arrived in the Mediterranean on a meeting with the rest of the team. The Avengers followed them and arrived, fighting the Sinister Six, but they where all defeated by the villains, though Electro was sent into space by Thor.
Using an explosion as a distraction, Silver Sable saved Spider-Man and Black Widow. While trying to get to one of Octavius's manufacturing plants to access a satellite, they defeated Sandman; Octavius responding by asking for the help of all nations, due to his position in the matter, in capturing Spider-Man. As he was trying to defeat the heroes, Beck was convinced by Spider-Man to join them. After a fierce battle against the Avengers, who were being controlled by Octavius, Mysterio revealed Doc Ock's hideout and fled.
Some time later, it was revealed that Mysterio found a way to enter another universe, and began using an android in hopes to conquer this world. Mysterio was found by his universe's Spider-Man when his portal caused a massive beam of energy; during the ensuing battle, Mysterio damaged his interdimensional device, causing that Spider-Man to end up in the other universe. Mysterio activated his remote-controlled avatar and used it to hunt and destroy the Spider-Man of his world and the current Spider-Man of the other. He managed to find the two at the Triskelion, and waged war against them.
Beck escaped the scene after battling the Spider-Men, and brought the android back to his universe. He had the temptation to return the android to the other universe and fight Spider-Man once more, as he was now trapped in that world, and Beck had managed to create a world without Spider-Man. What he didn't expect was the Spider-Man waiting for him in the other universe, who defeated and incarcerated him in the other universe.
When Galactus broke through the barrier between Earth-616 and Earth-1610, and vaporized New Jersey, Quentin was interrogated by Iron Man, where he revealed that Reed Richards of Earth-616 had stopped Galactus before on several occasions. He was seen to be quite disoriented, indicating that traveling into an alternate universe and remaining there could cause health problems.
After the temporary destruction of the entire universe, and its eventual restoration, Mysterio ended up back on Earth-616. From there, Beck invaded a Parker Industries lab to take revenge on Peter Parker by hacking into his Webware network and reversing its information flow, transmitting illusions into their users' brains. Unfortunately for Mysterio, Deadpool saw through his illusions and freed the Spider-Men, working together with them to discover what was going on. Mysterio was run over by Deadpool on his Dead-Buggy when he broke into the lab to put an end to his plan, and was left heavily injured. Mysterio's life was saved by Deadpool after he found out it was really him under the helmet.
Beck was taken to a hospital, where he was visited by Parker, who wanted to confirm that was indeed Beck, Deadpool and an unknown person who left a strange device next to him, saying he wasn't out of the game yet. After Deadpool killed Parker for the crimes he had supposedly committed, Mysterio used the device left to him to drag Peter's soul to Limbo in order to torture him as promised by his unknown visitor. But his plans were ruined by Deadpool, who sent his own soul to Limbo to rescue Peter's, again. Mysterio escaped the hospital soon afterwards.
Tired after being beaten by the likes of Deadpool, Beck abandoned his life of crime and relocated to Las Vegas, where he was eventually visited by Misty, a robot of his own creation whom Beck developed at some point in time and programmed to believe herself to be his daughter. She tried in vain to convince him to become Mysterio once again. Beck was later confronted by Ben Reilly, who posed as Spider-Man to confront the former criminal thinking he was up to something. When Misty prepared to perform an act to disappear the Mercury Rising casino, she convinced her father to watch the spectacle. After performing the act and putting its audience to sleep, Misty revealed her father that beneath the building lied an ancient site of worship of Cyttorak.
Misty and Quentin ventured into the underground temple, where she tried to murder her father with a dagger as part of a ritual to directly tap into Cyttorak's power using the Crimson Brand of Cyttorak. Misty's plan was foiled by the intervention of the Scarlet Spider and Dusk. The distraction gave Quentin the chance to grab the dagger and stab Misty with it, accidentally triggering the ritual. Using Cyttorak's power, Quentin returned to the mantle of Mysterio and tried to kill the Scarlet Spider, blaming him for his daughter's death. Mysterio was quickly defeated after the Scarlet Spider cut off his hand, which had become the source of Cyttorak's power due to the Crimson Brand. After escaping from the catacomb, Ben had Dusk take Quentin to a hospital so they could reattach his hand.
Back to Basics
In order to set the stage for Kindred's scheme against Spider-Man, Beck became Mysterio once again and tried to murder all the heroes of New York in a fake alien invasion. Beck tried to represent himself on the tribunal when Janice Lincoln (a.k.a. the Beetle) showed up to represent him at the behest of his master, pleading him not guilty by the reason of insanity. Beck was not willing to follow her suggestion at first, but a "visit" of Kindred made him change his mind while also resulting in a convenient "act" of insanity.
Sins of the Father
Quentin was coaxed back into becoming Mysterio again by Miss Sinister in exchange for keeping him safe from Logan. She revealed that in Logan's reality, Mysterio tricked him into killing the X-Men. Hoping to using his abilities to conquer the world, the two paired up with Neo-Hydra. He eventually learned that his new allies planned to kill him once they were done, so he wouldn't be able to use his illusions against them. In retaliation, he went to Logan asking for help and took him to Neo-Hydra's base. During the ensuing battle, he tricked Logan into thinking he had murdered him, only for Quentin to return to the insane asylum, tossing his costume in the trash along the way.
Working with Kindred
Mysterio was incarcerated again, suffering visions of Kindred, the demon that had tortured him in Hell after his suicide and resurrected him to do its bidding. Enacting a complicated ruse to escape the asylum and trick Spider-Man into thinking he was dead, Quentin Beck resumed the identity of Ludwig Rinehart and brainwashed his therapist, Dr. Winhorst, into believing he was Mysterio. Kindred manifested and killed Winhorst, who was dressed in Mysterio's costume, ostensibly to prevent Spider-Man from hearing its true name in a prophetic dream, while Beck was able to escape unimpeded.
VFX Artist: Beck was a master of make-up, physical stunt work, mechanical and visual special effects.
- Mechanical Engineer: He is a brilliant inventor and engineer, with advanced knowledge in robotics.
- Chemistry: He also learned a great deal of applied chemistry, especially the use of hallucinogens, and electronics.
- Strategist: Beck was a meticulous planner and organizer.
- Actor: He is a skilled actor who kept himself in top physical form.
Psychiatry: Beck knew basic psychiatry and physiological manipulation of others.
Mysterio Suit: Beck wears a suit that contains his personal weaponry that include a one-way acrylic glass helmet (with 30 minute air supply), holographic projectors, and gloves and boots armed with nozzles which emit hallucinogenic gas. He developed a gas that can cancel Spider-Man's spider-sense, and when he is cloaked in his mist gases, he uses sonar to detect objects and beings nearby. He also has more advanced technology (not of his own design) at his disposal.
Web-Shooters: Mysterio has also created his own version of Spider-Man's webbing, including a gun that fires webbing, but lacks the complete knowledge of the formula Spider-Man uses, since Spider-Man had also designed his artificial webbing to begin dissolving after an hour has passed.
- According to Spider-Man, Mysterio was the one to come up with the name "Sinister Six."
- This character appears in TSR, Inc.'s RPG adventure The Weird, Weird West. In the plot, he had been hired by Doctor Doom in 1968 to travel back in time to 1871 Dodge City. Alongside with other super-villains (including Sandman, Black Knight and Scorpion), he was to provide support to Doom while he analyzed a time anomaly and tried to obtain profit from it. Doom took his lackeys (no name was provided for the team) to a Krozzar camp to deal with the Krozzars. Doom eventually found the origin of the anomaly, a Chronovore, but he and his lackeys were also found by time-traveling heroes from 1989, and defeated.
- Beck is one of the few beings from an alternate universe to enter Earth-1610.
- Mysterio is allegedly a user of the FaceSpace social network, and friend to Nuwa.
- Due to the Sliding Timescale of Earth-616, the motivation for Mysterio becoming a special effects artist has changed with the time. In Webspinners: Tales of Spider-Man #1, Mysterio cites his inspiration as being the work of stop-motion special effects artists Ray Harryhausen. Whereas a more contemporary telling in Amazing Spider-Man (Vol. 5) #1 cites the movie Splash as his inspiration.
- Despite having bonded to a piece of the Venom symbiote in Symbiote Spider-Man #4, Mysterio was excluded from Absolute Carnage. According to the editorial section of Absolute Carnage: Scream #2, the piece of the symbiote only covered the outside of his costume - not coming into contact with his skin - and thus did not give him a codex, though this is incorrect as Symbiote Spider-Man #4 shows the symbiote covering Beck's exposed face.
- 167 appearance(s) of Quentin Beck (Earth-616)
- 11 appearance(s) in handbook(s) of Quentin Beck (Earth-616)
- 54 minor appearance(s) of Quentin Beck (Earth-616)
- 60 mention(s) of Quentin Beck (Earth-616)
- 6 mention(s) in handbook(s) of Quentin Beck (Earth-616)
- 240 image(s) of Quentin Beck (Earth-616)
- 20 quotation(s) by or about Quentin Beck (Earth-616)
- 2 item(s) used/owned by Quentin Beck (Earth-616)