During World War II, Baron Von Blitzschlag served the Nazi regime with his vast knowledge in genetics, having a part in creating agents such as Master Man and Warrior Woman. He ended up genetically altering himself as well, granting him the power to generate and absorb electricity. Blitzschlag reportedly fought against heroes such as Whizzer, Miss America, Thin Man, and Isaiah Bradley, who nearly killed him. After the war, Blitzschlag hid in a bunker for several years and eventually stopped using his powers when they started to fade.
Baron Von Blitzschlag was created by Dan Slott and Stefano Caselli.and first appeared in #Avengers: The Initiative issue 1 (2007).
Major Story Arcs
He appeared after the Civil War as an instructor and scientist for the Initiative. He took a great interest in Trauma's powers and later did the autopsy on MVP after his death. He was also responsible for the clones of MVP. He was attacked by the Vulturions a group of villians who use the Vulture's technology. They stole a briefcase containing classified research on gamma radiation, he tried to stop them using his power to generate electricity, but was unable produce more than an electric glow around his hand due to his age and how his powers have weakened. Von Blitzschlag MVP's three duplicates, were revealed to currently be the Scarlet Spiders and they treat him like a father. When a fifth MVP clone was given the Tactigon, an alien, sentient weapon capable of practically anything, the clone became enraged that MVP had been killed and went insane, calling himself KIA (Killed In Action). When Blitzschlag tried to stop it, KIA threw objects at the Baron, crippling him.
During the Secret Invasion, Skrull viruses shutdown War Machine's armor suit. Since Jim Rhodes was on life support in his suit, he began to die. Baron von Blitzschlag was watching, but War Machine did not want a former-Nazi helping him. Baron von Blitzschlag used his electrical energy to recharge the armor anyway, saving Rhodes. Trauma and Physique then ran in, and Trauma thought Blitzschlag was hurting War Machine and he yelled at him, upsetting the Baron. War Machine then left without thanking Blitzschlag.
Criti Noll, the second Skrull impersonating Hank Pym, left a code that would resurrect Ragnarok, the mad-clone of Thor, if Noll had lost the Skrull Invasion and was no longer at Camp Hammond. When Ragnarok was resurrected, Blitzschlag told the god it was not the real Thor. Ragnarok did not believe the Baron and used lightning to seemingly kill the Baron, then destroyed the lab.
When the New Warriors, who had arrived at Camp Hammond to take the original MVP's body tried to prevent Ragnarok from destroying the camp and its inhabitants, Ragnarok killed Michael, one of the two remaining Scarlet Spiders. Patrick, the last Spider, wanted revenge, but then Blitzschlag came out of the wreckage, the electricity having been absorbed to the point that it gave him the use of his legs again and also much more electrical power. Blitzschlag told Patrick that it was impossible to defeat Ragnarok, but worked with Patrick to use stored holograms to prove that Ragnarok really was not Thor. When Ragnarok discovered Thor was working and living with mortals, he departed Hammond to kill the god he was a copy of. Baron Blitzschlag then requested Patrick stay with him, calling him his son. Patrick said while he loved Blitzschlag and the Baron was the closest thing to a father he had, Patrick was truly not the Baron's son and needed to stay with the New Warriors. Then the New Warriors left with MVP's body.
After the results of Secret Invasion, the Initiative needed a new leader. Blitzschlag wanted the job, but Gauntlet refused and took it himself, not trusting a Nazi. Then Norman Osborn took control of the Initiative, with Taskmaster in charge and Hood working at recruiting. After alien invaders took over the negative zone prison, Taskmaster, Hood, and the Baron met about it. Hood suggested that some of the more reluctant Initiative members, the washouts, and disloyal villains be sent in as cannon fodder to wear down the enemy before the real, new Initiative came in (which now consisted of many villains and ambiguous heroes such as the U-Foes, the Brothers Grimm, Razorblade, Diamondback, and the Forces of Nature). Baron did not dispute when Taskmaster agreed.
Powers and Abilities
After genetic experimentation upon himself, Baron Von Blitzschlag gained the ability to generate, absorb, and manipulate electricity in various ways. Blitzschlag has been shown to absorb electricity from common electrical appliances and outlets, presumably storing the energy for latter use. He's also been shown to generate lightning blasts from his hands with varying intensity, enhance his physical condition and healing capabilities with absorbed energy, and even make use of a sentient electrical form to bypass the limitations of his human body, although it appears that he needs to absorb large quantities of energy in order to do this. Overall, Blitzschlag's abilities depend on the amount of electrical energy he has available to use, as his innate ability to generate it has severely diminished over the years.
Blitzschlag is also a scientific genius, with expertise in several fields of science, most notably genetics and cloning.