Benjamin Hammil was a teenage student attending the Xavier Institute up until it was closed down by its Headmaster Cyclops. Ben, more often referred to as Match, was enrolled at the school just after his mutant powers made themselves very evident. While at a local park in his hometown, Match's powers would emerge, inadvertently, violently burning down the park entirely. Clearly evident that Match would need help in controlling his burgeoning mutant powers, he would quickly get enrolled at the Xavier Institute.
Match was created by Christina Weir, Nunzio DeFilippis and Carlo Barberi and first appeared in New Mutants Vol.2 issue 7 (2004). His name was first revealed in New X-Men: Academy X issue 5 (2004).
Major Story Arcs
While at the Institute, Match was a stand out in both appearance and personality. In appearance, as a side effect of his mutant powers, Match's head was constantly engulfed in flame and his body radiated an orange color. Match's personality was just as fiery as his head. Match is the typical alpha male; he was impulsive, short tempered and abhorred hesitation and indecision. In contrast to that, Match had a knack for leadership, aided by the fact that others were naturally drawn to him as he took lead easily. Match is fiercely loyal to his friends and those he cared for. Due to these qualities, when the school adopted the new squad systems, Match would be placed in the Paragons as the squad leader.
The Paragons were designed to tailor to the needs of some of the older students learning needs. Wolfsbane would be appointed as their advisor and the squad would include: Trance, Pixie, Wolf Cub, Preview and DJ. Though Match's personality would see him clash with many students and staff alike at the school, this never affected him in his squad. Match quickly won over his squad and in return they would trust and follow him without question. Not all would be so smooth all the time. Shortly after being appointed, the Paragons advisor, Wolfsbane, would get romantically involved with one of the students and the school (Elixir) and would be let go. Replacing her would be ex-New Mutants and long time X-Men ally Magma. With powers similar to Matchs a more suitable choice could never be found. The Paragons were a solid unit with great potential but all would fall apart just as fast as it came together.
In the aftermath of M-Day 98% of the mutant population would wake to find that they were no longer mutants. The school would be impacted greatly only leaving 27 students with the use of their powers. Match, luckily, would wake up and find that he was one of the few to maintain his mutant nature and powers. Due to the lack of students the squad system would be dissolved, with no Paragons squad that meant that Match was no longer a squad leader. Emma Frost, Headmistress of the school, then would have most of the remaining students participate in an all out brawl against each other for placement in the group that would be trained as X-Men. Skilled as he was in the use of his powers, Match failed to make the cut and would be forced to remain in the mansion for protection.
To make matters worse all the, now, depowered students were be forced to leave the school as a precaution. Match was most close to his Paragon teammates and two of them, D.J. and Preview, would be affected and depowered forcing him to say goodbye to his friends. As the bus loaded with ex-students departed, in the cover night for their protection, before it could get to far a travesty would occur. A missile would be launched and aimed for the bus. Hitting its mark all aboard would die including Match's friend and teammate DJ. The remaining student body would be devastated by these events. Even though Match was down, he was not out. Especially considering that the government deemed Match a significant threat should violent conflict between mutants authorities occur. This is only strengthened by his predisposition for leadership. Match is not one to be expected to remain passive.
Quest For Magik
During one of the seldom free times that the remaining students get at the Xavier Institute, a group of the students were inside at a campfire telling stories which included Match as the campfire. Many stories would be told but it would be Blindfold's story that would take these young mutants for a tailspin and into a battle that none were prepared for. Blindfold told them a tale of a girl by the name of Illyana Rasputin , the ex-New Mutants and deceased little sister of the X-Men Colossus. She told them of her tragic life and how it ended in her young death. But somewhere in between the story, it somehow shifted and she began telling them the story as if it was currently happening. She said that the demon Lord Belasco had retaken Limbo and beaten the current ruler Amanda Sefton and exiled her. She also indicated that Belasco had taken away her Soulsword and that he wanted his pupil Illyana back. Some of the students began to get bothered by the story. Moments later they were all attacked by demons from Limbo sent by Belasco to find Illyana. He claimed that he could smell Illyana on some of the children. They were all then quickly teleported to Limbo.
While in Limbo, Blindfold used her powers quite effectively by navigating her team and giving many of them advice telling them when and how to react to their situations for the best results and their own survival. Match was equally effective in battle. He showed a mastery over his mutant talents never before shown. With his level-headed approach on the battlefield he was successful in killing multiple demons while defending his fellow students at the same time. Effective in battle yes, but his leadership skills would falter. While in Limbo, the students all looked for someone to take the lead. At first they approached Rockslide as he was as X-Man in training, but he declined. With Wolf Cub there he defaulted to his ex-squad leader, Match, to lead them. Whether it was fear, lack of skill or out of practice, Match would respond saying that he didn't know how to lead, declining the opportunity to take the lead. Though Match failed as a leader, his aptitude while fighting aided in the survival of both himself and his fellow students. Eventually a newly magical Pixie would teleport them all to safety back to Earth.
Divided We Stand
After the events of Messiah Complex , Cyclops would decide to shut the school down. All remaining students were sent back to their homes. Shortly after though, Cyclops wished to create one last group of X-Men , Match was not selected. Nevertheless, Match currently resides in San Francisco with the X-Men.
Not long after the X-Men arrived in San Francisco , rioting breaks out after a mutant-hate group called " Humanity Now! " marches to San Francisco promoting the anti-mutant reproductive legislation, " Proposition X ". With the help of Angel , Match was tasked with putting out fires started by the riots. After the riots subsided, the newly formed Dark X-Men informed the public of a new curfew stating no one is allowed outside after dark. Furious at the new rule, Match, along with fellow mutants Hellion , Sunspot , Avalanche , Lorelei , Meld , and Adam X , decide to make a scene in Union Square. After curfew hours, the group marches into Union Square with Match setting the entire area up in flames. Not long after, the Dark X-Men arrive in order to arrest the troublemakers.
In a Nation X special Ben is seen to have been played tricks on by the Stepford Cuckoos. They trapped him in an illusion where he was trapped in the bottom of a well with a Stringy haired Asian Ghost Child. In another Nation X Special Match is seen with Loa and Rockslide in the middle of the night trying to get ice cream . There is a wall blocking the way to the kitchen so Loa dissolves it and Rockslide absorbs the evidence by shattering and reforming himself.The group go into the kitchen to find that Warpath is guarding the food so Match shoots him with a blast of fire but Warpath runs into and grabs match by the head and puts him in a gas stove so he cannot use his fire abilities then Warpath easily takes down Rockslide but is threatened by Loa to kill him by dissolving his chest cavity so he backs down.
First To Last
Match is among the New X-Men members that protect Cyclops during the attack on Utopia by the Evolutionaries. He is then also trying to protect the X-Club from Litterbug and Dragoness,who are trying to find answers on what is happening outside
Match has the mutant ability of pyrokinesis. As with most pyrokinetics, Match has the mutant ability to psionically manipulate molecules in the air exciting them to burst into flame. Once created he has absolute control of it. Differing from most though his body produces a constant flow of fire as a result his head is constantly engulfed in flame and is body radiates with an orange color. Match able to manipulate fire to great extents thus granting him the ability to execute a number of different fire based attacks including:
Heat Projection: Match is able to bodily generate and project heat and flame at varying degrees strength
Not only is Match is able to create fire but he too is able to mentally control it in large amounts and to great levels.
Immunity to Heat and Flame:
As a natural part of his mutation, Match is immune to both the fire and heat he creates and that of others as well.
Energy Based Shield:
Match is able to focus the heats he generates into that of a shield that can cover his body that can withstand some energy attacks and melts most objects upon touch.
Match is able to release fire from his body as powerful concussive blasts of pure fire and extreme heat capable of dealing out incredible damage.
By generating enough fire and heat , Match can create thrust below him allowing flight similar to that of a rocket. He rarely is ever uses this power.
Limitations: Though untested, it is very likely that Match has a weakness to water or water-based attacks. Additionally Match is only able to generate heat if there is sufficient oxygen in the air.
Match has a natural gift for leadership allowing for sound battle skills and growing tactical abilities.
Match is adept at unarmed combat being by the likes of
while a student at the Xavier Institute.
128 lbs (58 kg)
White with no visible pupil
No hair, but fire instead engulfing his entire head
As a result of his mutation, Match's head is completely engulfed in flames.
Additionally his natural body temperature is higher than the average person due to this his body radiates heat and glows with an orange color.
Citizen of the United States. Minor with no criminal record.
Place of Birth:
Adventurer formerly Squad Leader of the Paragons and student
Xavier's Institute, High School level classes. Was not able to complete before school was closed down.
Match was created by
and first appeared in