This article has multiple issues. Please help improve it or discuss these issues on the talk page. (Learn how and when to remove these template messages) The topic of this article may not meet Wikipedia's general notability guideline. Please help to demonstrate the notability of the topic by citing reliable secondary sources that are independent of the topic and provide significant coverage of it beyond a mere trivial mention. If notability cannot be shown, the article is likely to be merged, redirected, or deleted.Find sources: "Centurius" – news · newspapers · books · scholar · JSTOR (May 2023) (Learn how and when to remove this template message) This article relies excessively on references to primary sources. Please improve this article by adding secondary or tertiary sources. Find sources: "Centurius" – news · newspapers · books · scholar · JSTOR (May 2023) (Learn how and when to remove this template message) (Learn how and when to remove this template message)
Centurius from Nick Fury, Agent of S.H.I.E.L.D. #2,
art by Jim Steranko
Publication information
PublisherMarvel Comics
First appearanceNick Fury, Agent of S.H.I.E.L.D. #2 (July 1968)
Created byJim Steranko (artist and writer)
Frank Giacoia (inker)
In-story information
Full nameNoah Black
SpeciesHuman mutate
Team affiliationsThe Conspiracy
Notable aliasesCenturius, Doc Century
AbilitiesExtraordinary genius
Advanced knowledge of genetic engineering and physics
Peak physical condition
Slowed aging
Possesses advanced aircraft and spacecraft, and a thermalic suppression beam
Use of stun-discs and ray guns
As Centurius:
Wears body armor

Centurius (Noah Black) is a fictional supervillain appearing in American comic books published by Marvel Comics. Debuting in 1968, he was Marvel's first black supervillain.[1]

Publication history

Centurius first appeared in Nick Fury, Agent of S.H.I.E.L.D. #2 (July 1968), and was created by writer and artist Jim Steranko with inker Frank Giacoia.[2]

He has appeared as a regular character in Thunderbolts since issue #157, and has remained with the team since the title transitioned into Dark Avengers beginning with issue #175.

Fictional character biography

Dr. Noah Black is a prize-winning African American geneticist who receives a Nobel Prize in the 1930s. He attends a conference on genetics in the 1930s along with other noted geneticists in the Marvel Universe such as Herbert Wyndham, Arnim Zola, and Wladyslav Shinsky of the Enclave.[3]

Sometime after winning the Prize, Black goes mad, takes the name "Centurius", and seeing himself as the self-proclaimed savior of Earth, retreats to remote Valhalla Island to conduct genetic experiments.[4] On the island, he is successful in evolving numerous monstrous creatures. During the transport of his newly created life forms to an orbiting space ark, secret agents Nick Fury and Jimmy Woo by chance discover Centurius' island when they are forced to crash land their aircraft. The pair of agents initially attempt to convince Centurius to return to civilization with them, but when the geneticist's plot to destroy all life on Earth is revealed, Fury and his companion attack. In a ploy to defeat the agents, Centurius attempts to transform himself into a "superior being" using a device called the "Evolutionizer", but instead of evolving he "de-evolves" into a handful of protoplasmic slime.[5]

Later, Centurius somehow "re-evolves" into human form and as a member of the group known as the Conspiracy, he clashes with the heroic monster hunter Ulysses Bloodstone when the Conspiracy tries to gain untold power by gathering and reuniting the lost fragments of the Bloodgem, a mystic jewel from another dimension.[6] However, The Conspiracy's efforts ultimately fail when their essences are absorbed by an enormous crystalline creature created from the Bloodgem. Ulysses Bloodstone succeeds in shattering the Bloodgem creature which apparently kills Centurius and the other members of the Conspiracy.[7] Years later, Captain America discovers the skeletal remains of Centurius while exploring the Conspiracy's abandoned underground base.[8]

Much later, Centurius is found to not be dead after all and is a prisoner at the Raft, a prison for super powered criminals. He is able to escape the prison with numerous other inmates.[9] Centurius, along with many of the other escaped inmates, eventually becomes a member of The Hood's crime syndicate.[10] During an attack on the New Avengers headquarters by the crime syndicate, Centurius is incapacitated by the sorcerer Doctor Strange and taken into custody by S.H.I.E.L.D.[11]

During the Secret Invasion storyline, he is among the many supervillains who rejoined the Hood's crime syndicate and attacked an invading Skrull force.[12] He joins with the Hood's gang in an attack on the New Avengers, who were expecting the Dark Avengers instead.[13] He is later seen conferring with the Hood regarding the zombie virus. Centurius advises the Hood not to pursue the virus, but the Hood is compelled by Dormammu to procure the virus anyway.[14]

Centurius was later selected by Luke Cage to be a part of the "beta team" of the Thunderbolts, alongside Boomerang, Shocker, Gunna, and Mister Hyde.[15]

During the "Search for Tony Stark" arc, Centurius rejoined Hood's gang and assisted in the attack on Castle Doom.[16]

Powers and abilities

Noah Black is a normal human being, though an extraordinary genius with advanced knowledge of genetic engineering and other areas of science and technology. He holds a PhD in physics. Black was exposed to an "evolution ray" from his Evolutionizer device, which temporarily transformed him into a physically "superior being". Black apparently ages at an extremely slow rate because of his evolution ray.

As Centurius, he wears body armor of his own design but unknown composition which strongly resembles the armor worn by the High Evolutionary. He uses "stun-discs" and ray guns which fire unknown energies.

Noah Black has also designed and built advanced aircraft and spacecraft, and a "thermalic suppression beam".


  1. ^ Wells, John (2014). American Comic Book Chronicles: 1965-1969. TwoMorrows Publishing. p. 201. ISBN 978-1605490557.
  2. ^ DeFalco, Tom; Sanderson, Peter; Brevoort, Tom; Teitelbaum, Michael; Wallace, Daniel; Darling, Andrew; Forbeck, Matt; Cowsill, Alan; Bray, Adam (2019). The Marvel Encyclopedia. DK Publishing. p. 80. ISBN 978-1-4654-7890-0.
  3. ^ X-Factor Annual #3 (1988)
  4. ^ Rovin, Jeff (1987). The Encyclopedia of Super-Villains. New York: Facts on File. p. 55. ISBN 0-8160-1356-X.[1]
  5. ^ Nick Fury, Agent of S.H.I.E.L.D. #2 (July 1968)
  6. ^ Rampaging Hulk #3 (June 1977)
  7. ^ Rampaging Hulk #8 (Apr. 1978)
  8. ^ Captain America #358 (Sept. 1989)
  9. ^ The New Avengers #1 (Jan. 2005)
  10. ^ The New Avengers #35 (Dec. 2007)
  11. ^ The New Avengers Annual #2 (2008)
  12. ^ The New Avengers #46
  13. ^ The New Avengers #50
  14. ^ Marvel Zombies 4 #2
  15. ^ Thunderbolts #156-157
  16. ^ Invincible Iron Man #597. Marvel Comics.