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Rex Mason (New Earth)

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In Ancient Egypt during the reign of Pharaoh Ramses II, the priest Ahk-Ton discovered a fallen meteor, from which he crafted the Orb of Ra. He sent it into the future, calculating for its return as a powerful weapon against the king. When Batman and the Outsiders arrived from the future, Ahk-Ton used the Orb to enslave Metamorpho. Once Metamorpho was freed, Ahk-ton was defeated and taken by Ramses, who intended to slay Ahk-Ton. Apparently this execution was stayed. Ahk-Ton soon resurfaced. This time, he himself had been transformed by exposure to the meteor into "the Metamorph."

Vandar Adg (Vandal Savage) used the Orb of Ra to enslave Ahk-Ton and war against the prince, Khufu. This transformation was later reversed, and Ahk-ton was slain and buried along with the artifacts.

Millennia later, Rex Mason, a soldier for hire, was contracted by Simon Stagg to find the Orb of Ra. When he found it, his cohort, Java, stole it and left Rex in the light of an ancient meteor. This meteor transformed Mason into Metamorpho, the Element Man. [3]

Soon after, he sought the Justice League's help in restoring him to normal. This failed, and Rex also rejected the JLA's offer of membership. [4] He teamed up on other time during the "Silver Age" of heroes when Deadman coerced a group of heroes to form a task force against Agamemno and the Injustice League.

Rex Mason (New Earth) Origin

Mason encounters the meteor

Rex continued his adventuring solo, until the day when Batman's associate, Lucius Fox, was kidnapped in Markovia by Baron Bedlam. At just that time, Metamorpho had been seeking a cure from Markovian scientist, Dr. Helga Jace. Metamorpho aided in overthrowing Bedlam and decided to stay on with this new group of heroes, whose name he coined: the Outsiders. [5][6]

It seemed that Doctor Jace was on her way to discovering a way to cure Rex. She helped him gain access to his girlfriend, Sapphire Stagg. The reunion was brief as her jealous father, Simon killed Rex using the Orb of Ra. Doctor Jace proclaimed him dead, but admitted that Rex's physiology was no longer human. To restore him, the Outsiders decided to return to Egypt, in search of the meteor of Ahk-Ton. There, they were transported back in time to 1200 B.C. Metamorpho was again exposed to the ancient meteor and restored. (Though he would discover that this second exposure meant he could never reverse the process). He briefly came under Ahk-Ton's control before the Outsiders could stop him and capture Ahk-Ton. Upon their return to the 20th century, Sapphire Stagg proposed marriage to Rex, which he wholeheartedly accepted.

Later, the Outsiders foiled an assassination attempt on Simon Stagg. Afterward, Stagg relented and gave his blessing to the wedding of Metamorpho to his daughter. As Rex and Sapphire readied for their wedding, his former foe, Maxwell Tremaine, sent his shape-changing lackey, Even Steven to kidnap Sapphire. Even Steven betrayed Tremaine and killed the both of them. [7]

After the wedding, the happy couple decided to try to find a way to conceive a baby.

Hopes for children were dashed after much physical examination. And so, Rex agreed to undergo an experiment which would infuse him with new DNA. Unfortunately, while Doctor Jace began this treatment, the Manhunters activated all their sleeper agents on Earth — including Jace! Jace captured the Outsiders and took control over Metamorpho. Sadly, before Jace could be stopped, she destroyed Metamorpho and herself. [8]

Metamorpho laid dormant (and was believed dead) for quite some time. Finally, he was reconstituted by the Dominators' gene bomb. Soon thereafter, he resumed his heroic career as a charter member of Justice League Europe. He suffered temporary amnesia, and forgot about his family, who eventually sought him out. To his surprise, he now had an infant son — Joey. [9] By then, Sapphire had been pressured into marrying Java and Rex could not cope with such an apparent betrayal. He and Sapphire went their separate ways. During his time with Justice League Europe, he met and fell in love with Vivian D'Aramis, the Crimson Fox. Though Vivian returned his feelings, she was torn when her former husband, Rene, returned from the dead. She chose to go with Rene and the two of them faked their deaths (again).

It seemed tragedy would ever follow the Element Man, as his son, too was cursed by the meteor of Ahk-Ton. Unless contained, the boy would randomly transform the elements around him. For everyone's safety, Rex agreed to place the boy in Simon Stagg's care. Once done, Stagg forbade Rex from ever seeing Sapphire or Joey. For his son's safety, Rex abided this until he met a woman named Jillian Conway. She had also been transformed by the meteor. She convinced Rex that she knew a way to cure them of their metamophosis. Rex hoped that this miracle would work for his son, too, and he stole Joey away from Simon Stagg. [10] Before it was too late, Rex discovered that Conway had misread the hieroglyphics; when she attempted to reverse the process on herself, she was instead destroyed. In the confusion, Joey had escaped and found his way to the the meteor. Since the meteor transforms those who touch it, and Joey transforms the things he touches, both canceled each other out. Joey was cured of his condition, and the meteor was rendered inert. [11]

Rex and Sapphire were once again estranged and he began to mutate even further into a more rock-like form. During this time, he was drawn once again to Vivian D'Aramis. This relationship was cut short when Vivian was kidnapped and ultimately killed.

Metamorpho has twice reunited with the Outsiders: once in Paris, and again at Geo-Force's wedding.

Tragedy struck again when Metamorpho shielded his fellow Leaguers upon reentry from space. He was rendered "inert," and was interred in Valhalla Cemetery, the graveyard of heroes. There he laid, but not peacefully. When the sixth-dimensional being called the "Id," was loosed on Earth, it granted everyone's desires. Young Joey Mason wished for his father's "return"; the dead hero was not, however, brought back "to life." After the Id's defeat, Rex's strained form was returned to its grave.

Apparently, Rex's spirit remained alive and he knew that he could be restored using the Orb of Ra. He finally succeeded in contacting Sapphire Stagg and she used it to restore him at last. He was soon back into the swing of things. Thayer Jost recruited him to join a short-lived revival of the Doom Patrol.

The whole Metamorpho clan was involved in an explosion which altered their identities. Simon, Sapphire and Joey were all merged into a single energy being. Rex himself took on the form of the late Java. The resulting amnesia led the former into a blind rage and up against Black Canary. Canary ultimately guessed what had happened and helped them regain their individual selves. Apparently, Rex subconsciously chose the form of Java because of jealousy; where Rex could never succeed, Java had been like a son to Simon Stagg. Stagg was rejuvenated by the affair and suggested they begin their adventuring anew.

Meanwhile, a second Metamorpho appeared. This person possessed most of Rex's memories, but suffered a measure of amnesia. This person accepted Arsenal's proposal to join the new Outsiders. The real Rex soon learned of his duplicates activities and went to reassimilate him.

He revealed to the Outsiders that he had fallen to Earth protecting the JLA, his body dispersed into many pieces. Though most pieces were recollected, one fragment reformed itself into its own separate consciousness. Understandably, this new Metamorpho had limited memory of its past and he eventually came under the wing of S.T.A.R. Labs in California and joined the Outsiders

The Outsiders were not so quick to allow Rex to destroy their teammate and in the end, Rex decided that this new version of himself was indeed a unique sentient being. He was allowed to continue his life with the Outsiders and choose a name for himself: Shift (he decided not to take an alter ego).

This "second" Metamorpho went by the name "Shift" and developed a relationship with Indigo. After the events of One Year Later, Shift willingly chose to be re-assimilated into Metamorpho, after killing several people. Rex stepped in to fill Shift's position in the Outsiders, while a full account of Shift's crimes was pending.

Shortly following the "Battle for Blüdhaven", the Outsiders went through an organizational change and Nightwing left the team, deferring leadership of the Outsiders to his old partner, Batman. Batman screened several known heroes to see who would be appropriate for the new roster, and Metamorpho was one of the veteran members selected for the team, beating out Aquaman. [12]

However, Batman went missing and the Outsiders started looking for him all across Gotham. Metamorpho and Grace went to Arkham Asylum and learned from Dr. Arkham that Joker had instructed all the inmates to sing a song about Batman and gave all of them a poster with the picture of Batman's tombstone on it. Back at their headquarters, Metamorpho comes to the realization that without Batman, there is no team.[13]

After receiving a message from a fake Batman, the team decided to play along to locate the real Batman. Unfortunately, after the message was delivered REMAC was infected with a virus that caused him to attack Thunder. Metamorpho tried to restrain REMAC and made him stop his attack, but the cyborg started an explosion sequence that destroyed their headquarters and blew Rex into a million pieces.[14]


Metamorpho 001

Metamorpho's Powers

  • Unique Physiology: Metamorpho's physical body appears segmented with each limb appearing to be entirely made of a different elemental substance; whether it is liquid, solid or gas.
  • Elasticity: Rex can stretch, bounce, elongated, control, reshape his body as if it were made of rubber or plastic.
  • Molecular Reconstruction: Rex can transmute his body to any of a wide variety of liquid, gas or metallic elemental compounds and form it to his will. Originally, he was limited to the elements which occur naturally in the human body. Over time, this limitation seems to have disappeared. He can alter the shapes and consistencies of these elements and combine them to form complex compounds. Rex can assume forms of gas, liquid or solid states.
  • Metamorphosis: Metamorpho can also shape parts and portions of his body instead of the whole. He can form such complex shapes as a tank and a bicycle and such simple forms as a cloud or a spring.[15]
  • Enhanced Durability: The nature of Rex's body provides him with natural body armor offering damage resistance from blunt attacks and energy attacks.



  • Although this character was originally introduced during DC's Earth-One era of publication, their existence following the events of the 1985-86 limited series Crisis on Infinite Earths remains intact. However, some elements of the character's Pre-Crisis history may have been altered or removed for Post-Crisis New Earth continuity, and should be considered apocryphal.
  • Metamorpho is sometimes known as E-Man and The Fab Freak.
  • Metamorpho


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Characters Metamorpho | Sapphire Stagg | Simon Stagg | Java | Element Girl | Joey Mason
Teams Justice League America | Justice League Europe | Outsiders | Doom Patrol
Villains Doc Dread | The Thunderer | Maxwell Tremaine | Ahk-Ton | The Phantom of Washington | Jillian Conway
Miscellanea Metamorphae | Elemental Transmutation | Orb of Ra | Stagg Mansion | Stagg Enterprises
Creators Bob Haney | Ramona Fradon | Sal Trapani | Mark Waid | Graham Nolan | Dan Jurgens
Comics Metamorpho (Volume 1) | Metamorpho (Volume 2) | Metamorpho: Year One | Batman and the Outsiders (Volume 1) | Batman and the Outsiders (Volume 2) | Outsiders (Volume 1) | Outsiders (Volume 3) | Justice League Europe
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Outsiders member
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This character is or was primarily a member of the super-hero team known as the Outsiders, in any of its various incarnations. They are a black ops team dedicated to fighting evil and taking the fall in public opinion that bigger groups like the Justice League cannot, started by Batman to avoid being crippled by public relations needs. This template will categorize articles that include it into the "Outsiders members" category.

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Doom Patrol member
This character was at some point primarily a member of the Doom Patrol. A long-running team of rag-tag misfit heroes who work together for the common good, fighting evil against all odds. This template will categorize any article that includes it into the Doom Patrol members category.

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This character is or was a member of the Justice League of America, or the Justice League in any of its various incarnations, sworn by a duty to act as guardians of America and the world by using their skills and/or superpowers to protect Earth from both interstellar and domestic threats.
This template will categorize articles that include it into the "Justice League of America members" category.

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