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Henry Jekyll (Earth-ABC)

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Doctor Henry Jekyll was a prominent physician living in London during the latter half of the 19th century. In 1886, he became obsessed with unlocking the more primal passions of the subconscious mind, presumably with the goal of ridding evil from the soul. To this end, he created a potion which he then subsequently consumed. The experiment yielded unpredictable results however. In addition to releasing a dual persona, Jekyll's body went through a dramatic physical metamorphosis as well. The timid doctor grew to nearly three times his normal size, developed additional musculature, superhuman strength and grotesque ape-like features. Jekyll's mind was subsumed by a more violent and dominating personality that took to calling itself Edward Hyde. Losing all inhibition, Hyde embraced his darker passions, committing acts of lust and murder. Initially, this metamorphosis would last for several hours and Hyde would eventually transform back into Henry Jekyll. As time passed however, Jekyll discovered that he no longer required his potion to prompt the change. Instead, he began to transform into Hyde whenever he experienced bouts of great stress. As Hyde continued to terrorize the streets of London, friends of Henry Jekyll grew gravely concerned. It wasn't long before those closest to him began to realize that Jekyll and Hyde were one and the same. One account postulated that Hyde took his own life in favor of being captured by the police, but this turned out to be false.

Hyde disappeared from London for many years, but resurfaced in Paris, France in the summer of 1898. Here he began a string a bloody murders, all of which involved prostitutes. In July of that year, Mina Murray and Allan Quatermain, acting on behalf of British Intelligence came to Paris in search of Henry Jekyll. They contacted a retired detective named C. Auguste Dupin, and together they tracked Jekyll down to a room he had been staying at. Jekyll transformed into Hyde and attacked Mina Murray, but Dupin kept him at bay with his pistol, shooting Hyde's right ear off. Quatermain managed to subdue the brute with a bottle filled with laudanum and he was imprisoned inside of a secret annex beneath the British Museum. Murray and Quatermain's employer, Campion Bond, saw great value in Jekyll's dual persona and made a bargain with him. In exchange for keeping him out of prison for his various crimes, Bond wanted Jekyll to join Mina, Quatermain and several others as part of an agency known as the League of Extraordinary Gentlemen. Jekyll agreed, but was reluctant to engage in any behavior that might set Hyde free.

Jekyll's first actual mission with the team involved the theft of a valuable anti-gravity material known as Cavorite. An oriental crime lord named Fu Manchu was reputedly using the Cavorite to create a fleet of flying warships, and it was in the group's best interests to stop his operation and recover the mineral. Jekyll accompanied Allan Quatermain to the Limehouse district to confirm Fu Manchu's presence. They discovered him at an opium den, and reported back to the rest of the team. Mina soon discovered the exact location where the Cavorite was being kept and the League sneaked into Manchu's underground facility. It wasn't long however, before Jekyll was worked into a state of severe agitation and transformed into Edward Hyde. Hyde charged through Fu Manchu's soldiers, tearing and biting through flesh and bone, leaving nothing behind but a blood-soaked abattoir. Once the Cavorite was recovered, Hyde escaped from the tunnel and returned to League's headquarters at the British Museum.

Powers

  • Transformation: Henry Jekyll possessed the ability to physically alter his physical body to embody the essence of his dual personality Edward Hyde. Initially, Jekyll required a serum in order to instigate the change. As time went on however, the changes began to take affect involuntarily. Severe stress, or sometimes even mild agitation, was enough to prompt the change. With effort, Jekyll could occasionally suppress the transformation into Hyde, but this was seldom and always with great difficulty.
  • Enhanced Sense of Smell: Edward Hyde possessed heightened olfactory senses and could perceive scents that were normally imperceptible to a normal human being.
  • Enhanced Vision: Edward Hyde's vision was acute enough that he could see in the dark, and could also detect heat patterns. He was one of the few people that could actually "see" Invisible Man, Hawley Griffin, though he only saw him as a thermal pattern.
  • Superhuman Strength: Edward Hyde possessed superhuman strength. Though the limits of his strength has never been measured, he could tear the limbs off of opponent as if he were snapping a twig. The pressure from Hyde's over-sized jaw was powerful enough to bite through solid bone.
  • When he transforms into Mister Hyde, Jekyll grows to twice his normal size, with monstrous ape-like features, and disproportionate physical characteristics. A gunshot injury has also left him with only one ear.
  • In the original book, Dr. Hyde was actually smaller and weaker than Dr. Jekyll.

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Footnotes


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