Phineas T. Horton
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Horton was first seen revealing his android creation, dubbed the Human Torch's existence to the world at a press conference in New York City, but the reactionary press dubbed the android a menace. Horton felt pressured into burying the Torch in cement until he could devise a way to control the Torch's flames. However, the Torch was able to escape; Horton was ostracized from the scientific community, and the government impounded his equipment. The Torch learned to control his powers, and cut his ties with his creator.
Horton moved to Boston and created another android named Adam II, who rebelled against his creator. The Torch and his partner Toro came to visit professor Horton, but Adam captured them as well. The Patriot freed Adam's captives, and the All-Winners Squad defeated Adam (at the cost of the second Captain America's life), leading to Adam's destruction in an automobile accident.
In 1955, the Human Torch was believed to have been destroyed, shattering Horton's dreams of glory once more. Horton disappeared from public eye, working as a repairman under the alias "Thomas Raye", and drinking heavily. He married late in life to a woman with a daughter named Frankie, who was given her stepfather's assumed surname. Her mother died soon after the marriage, leading Horton to drink even more.
When Frankie was a young girl, Horton learned of the existence of the Fantastic Four, a member of which team went by the name of the Human Torch. Horton took Frankie to an abandoned chemical company to try to construct a new Human Torch of his own. As Frankie was carrying a drum of chemicals for her father, she fell and the chemicals engulfed her in flames, mutating her into a superhuman being like the Torches. Horton felt responsible for what happened, planting a post-hypnotic suggestion in Frankie that would make her forget what happened and fear fire. Horton was ashamed, and disappeared while Frankie was still in a trance, never to have contact with her again except for the money he sent her regularly.
The android superhero Vision had been duped by Immortus into believing that Horton had created him out of the remains of the original Human Torch. When an international agency capture the Vision and erased his memory, they tracked down the now elderly Horton to force him to reprogram the Vision. Horton, of course, had never worked on the Vision before and did not know how to fix him. When the West Coast Avengers came to rescue the Vision, they instead found him dismantled along with the imprisoned Phineas Horton. Horton was able to help the Avengers find the Torch's resting place, and the Scarlet Witch was able to use her powers to reactivate the android Human Torch. It would later be revealed that this Horton was actually a Space Phantom, used by Immortus to further deceive the Avengers.
First Appearance: Marvel Comics (1939) #1
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View a chronological listing of this character's appearances
1939 Daily Bugle (2009)
Avengers Forever (1998)
#7 Avengers West Coast (1989)
- 'Into a Limbo... Large and Broad'#8
- 'The Secret History Of The Avengers'
#48 Avengers/Invaders (2008)
- 'This Ancient Evil'#50
- 'Return of the Hero'#61
- 'The Immortus Imperative'
Captain America And Bucky (2011)
#33 Fantastic Four (1961)
- 'Gestern noch ein Held'
Fantastic Four (1968)
Fantastic Four (2005)
Vol 3 Giant-Size Avengers (1974)
- 'Where Stalks the Sandman'
#3 Human Torch Comics 70th Anniversary Special (2009)
- '... What Time Hath Put Asunder!'#4
- '... Let All Men Bring Together'
Marvel Comics (1939)
Marvel Comics (Faksimile) (1999)
Marvel Comics #1: 70th Anniversary Edition (2009)
Marvel Masterworks: Golden Age Marvel Comics (2004)
Marvel Mystery Comics (1939)
Marvel Mystery Handbook 70th Anniversary Special (2009)
#0 Official Handbook of the Marvel Universe A to Z (2008)
- 'Book Zero'#1
- 'A Time of Marvels'
Saga of the Sub-Mariner (1988)
#4 The Avengers (1963)
- 'A Fire on the Water'
The Human Torch (1940)
The Invaders (1975)
#7 The Marvels Project (2009)
- 'The Blackout Murders of Baron Blood!'#22
- 'The Fire that Died'
The Official Handbook of the Marvel Universe: Update '89 (1989)
The Sub-Mariner (1968)
#14 The Torch (2009)
- 'Burn, Namor, Burn'
The Ultimate Graphic Novel Collection (2011)
The Vision and the Scarlet Witch (1982)
Timely 70th Anniversary Collection (2010)
West Coast Avengers (1985)
#42 What If? (1977)
- 'VisionQuest, Part One: One of Our Androids is Missing!'#43
- 'VisionQuest, Part Two: Vision Quest'#44
- 'VisionQuest, Part Three: Better a Widow...'
#4 Wizard Ace Edition (1995)
- 'What If... The Invaders Had Stayed Together After World War Two?'
Young Men (1950)
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