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When he was young, Dirty Bomb (real name Alvin) greatly admired the Machinist after he saw him fight Battalion. He admired him to the point of wanting to become a scientist so that he could become a villain like him. Being a D-student however, the best he could do was get a job hauling nuclear waste. While driving drunk on the job, Alvin wound up flipping his truck and getting doused with the nuclear waste, giving him his powers of radioactivity and leading him to become the meta-human thug known as Dirty Bomb.
He considers this to have been a serendipitous sequence of events that he owes to the Machinist and his admiration of him.
Powers & Abilities
Dirty Bomb can cause all or part of his body to explode with varying degrees of radioactivity. The suit he wears keeps his radioactivity contained so that he doesn't irradiate his allies, and it also seems to assist him in directing his explosive energy so that he can shoot it at others. Without his suit, he simply pours out radiation nonstop and can make himself forcibly explode like an actual dirty bomb.
Although Dirty Bomb is unaffected by the destructiveness of his own explosions, he'll need time to let himself recharge if he expends too much energy at once - such as when he has his whole body explode.