Characters : Swarm
He's made of friggin' bees!
Being a living creature who is in turn is made of thousands of living creatures, Swarm can alter his body to change shape and mass. He can fly (though according to the law of physics, he can't), and his body is unaffected by blows or bullets.
Swarm is vulnerable to insecticides.
Von Meyer's body is composed totally of bees which obey his every order.
Known to the public
South America, Los Angeles
No criminal record
The Champions, Spider-Man
Fritz Von Meyer
Fritz Von Meyer was a world expert on toxic poisons, agriculturist, and expatriate Nazi who hid in South America for years after the war. He came upon a massive hive of bees and found it the result of an unusual meteorite bombardment that, he reasoned, left them mutated - their intelligence multiplied one thousandfold by the radiation. Working to reawaken their killer instincts so that the bees may serve him, he fashioned a controller device to change them.
When exposed to the device's rays, the bees indeed were no longer passive, but neither under Von Meyer's control. Instead, they attacked his body, stinging through his protective garb. As he felt his life fleeting, he reached out and seized the queen bee. With her in Von Meyer's power, the swarm would be his to control... except Von Meyer had become something different: an aggregate man, an embodiment of the bees, called Swarm! Their relationship is a symbiotic one - through him, the bees create and think, while through them he lives to conquer.
Von Meyer has been a pain in the sides of many super heroes, from Iceman and Firestart to Spider-Man and The Champions of Los Angeles. He teamed with Kraven the Hunter while taking on Firestar and Iceman and was accidentally beaten by the Rhino when fighting Spider-Man.
While hiding out in South America, von Meyer's psychic connection to his bees was severed by the psyionic blast created by a battle between New York's super heroes and the entity known as Onslaught. He traveled to New York to find the source of the blast, but instead found a device that he believed could let him control every bee on the planet. (That may not sound impressive, but considering how much of earth's bio-mass is insect life, he could have quite a bit of power.)
The Institute of Seismoharmonic Studies was soon covered in a hive, which drew the attention of Ben Reilly, who was Spider-Man at the time. After helping some people that had been effected by the enormous swarm of bees that arrived in New York, Spidey arrived at the hive. He quickly found that the bees remembered him (or Peter, as it were) and were afraid of him. They let him enter the research institute and the scientists inside helped Ben disrupt the bees ability to fly. They created a psyonic pulse that broke von Meyer's psychic connection to the bees. In the end, the scientists thanked Spider-Man, much to the irritation of J. Jonah Jameson.
Swarm recently allied himself with the Chameleon to attack Mary Jane as she practiced for a play. Peter became a target after he revealed his ID on TV due to the Superhuman Registration Act. After the sprinkler system got rid of the bees, von Meyer's skeleton was easily KO'ed by a stage hand.
Von Meyer was kidnapped by Alyosha Kravinoff and used for Kraven's hunting pleasure. He escaped after Kraven battled the Punisher. He wasn't so lucky after battling the Thunderbolts. After incorporating enough bees to grow over twenty feet tall, he battled the incarcerated bad guys, who were assigned to bring him in as per the Superhuman Registration Act. Von Meyer managed to hold off Radioactive Man's attempts to break his psychic connection to the bees, until team leader Norman Osborn noticed that von Meyer's skeleton was vulnerable. Mac Gargan (Venom III) was then sent to finish him, which he accomplished by eating the skeleton.
Swarm eventually returned (and how his skeleton managed to escape from Gargan's digestive system, I hope to never know) in Buenos Aires, Argentina. He managed to control his bees as avatars and took on the Avengers. Stature disrupted von Meyer's connection to the queen bees and thus to the rest of the swarm. You'd think he'd have found a way around that by now. Must be irritating to keep getting beaten in the same way again and again.
|May 1977||App: Champions, The #14|
|Jun 1977||App: Champions, The #15|
|Nov 1979||App: Spectacular Spider-Man (Vol. 1) #36|
|Dec 1979||App: Spectacular Spider-Man (Vol. 1) #37|
|Sep 1994||App: Secret Defenders #19|
|Oct 1994||App: Secret Defenders #20|
|Sep 1993||App: Lethal Foes of Spider-Man #1|
|Oct 1993||App: Lethal Foes of Spider-Man #2|
|Nov 1993||App: Lethal Foes of Spider-Man #3|
|Dec 1993||App: Lethal Foes of Spider-Man #4|
|Oct 1996||App: Sensational Spider-Man (Vol. 1) #9|
|Nov 1996||App: Sensational Spider-Man (Vol. 1) #10|
The assistance of the Marvel Chronology Project is gratefully acknowledged.
Some of the above information is extracted from the various versions of the Official Handbook to the Marvel Universe and the more recent Marvel Encyclopaedias.