Golden Age Origin
Archie Masters was a timid, cautious astronomy professor who taught at a university somewhere in the eastern United States. A colleague created a device called an atom smasher, but the initial test went awry and he was bathed in atomic radiation. But instead of killing him, the accident endowed him with various superhuman abilities. With his confidence boosted, he used these powers to fight crime as the American Crusader. In his civilian identity, he pretended to be a meek pushover he once was, to the endless frustration of his fiance.
The American Government became concerned about the loss of their patriotic heroes and with American Crusaders consent he is cloned in a effort to make an army of American Superheroes. The cloning technology was not so good in the 1950's so the experiments didn't work well. The clones also did not have the same power that American Crusader had. In fact they had no power at all. Many of them didn't even live. In an attempt to make the clones have the same power as the original the clones that survived with minimal mutations are subjected to the same radiation the American Crusader was. This only worked so well and made the clones almost mindless zombies. Also due to the experiment they virtually have no face at all.
He's kept imprisoned and unconscious by a totalitarian government, and clones called Crusaders are created from his DNA to function as super-powered soldiers.
In the related Black Terror series, The Black Terror finds Archie and helps him to lure the Crusaders and destroy them, using the last of Archie's energy in the process; the Crusaders all die, and an African-American soldier named Marcus Chamberlain, who was with Archie and the Terror at the last moment, gains the power and becomes the new American Crusader.
Powers and Abilities
Equipment: None known.
Transportation: None known.
Weapons: None known.
- Historical First Appearance: Thrilling Comics #19 (Nedor, August 1941)
- No trivia.
- Appearances of Archibald Masters (Chronological)
- Appearances of Archibald Masters (Unordered)
- Character Gallery: Archibald Masters
- Fan-Art Gallery: Archibald Masters
- Quotations by Archibald Masters
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