Two brothers were arrested during a robbery and brought before the hardline Judge Smart, who sentenced them to prison. One of the brothers died in prison of pneumonia. The other, Dennis, would go on, fueled by anger and feelings of revenge. After getting out of prison, he acquired samples of something called Vitamin X that gave him above-normal strength, and crafted the identity of Vitaman, a patriotic hero during the Second World War.

After the war, Vitaman moved to London and became involved in petty crime. When by chance he encountered Sara Smart, Judge Smart's daughter, he vowed to have his revenge on the family. Becoming her boyfriend, he used economic leverage to drag her into a seedy web of masked crime, before convincing her that Doctor Hyde's Evil Serum was "a pick-me-up".