This article is about the original Atomic Skull. For the character currently using that name, see Atomic Skull.
Albert Michaels worked as an administrator and scientist at STAR Labs. He became obsessed with becoming immortal, and turned to the villainous organization known as SKULL to make his dream a reality. To this end he was implanted with a radium-based device that regulated his brain functions and also enabled him to project blasts of radioactive energy generated from his thought impulses.
Michaels was created by Gerry Conway and Curt Swan.
In his original back-story, Michaels suffered from a rare neurological disorder that caused intractable seizures and for which there was no known cure. In desperation he turned to SKULL, which implanted a radium-based device in his skull to control the seizures. In return, Michaels was to act as an agent of SKULL. The device provided him with thought-based energy blasts, but these proved difficult to control, and the device proved useless to control his seizures. He sought to have this problem fixed, but the only scientist who would have been able to help was captured and imprisoned by Superman. Swearing revenge on the hero for this, Michaels became a costumed criminal and took up the name Atomic Skull
Following the Crisis on Infinite Earths, Michael's origin was altered to the current explanation. Another Atomic Skull was introduced in the Modern Age, though the two have no known connection to one another. An in-universe fictional character known as Atomic Skull was also introduced, and bears some superficial resemblance to Michaels.
Major Story Arcs
As part of his vendetta against Superman, Michaels takes control of SKULL and uses the organization to plague Superman. He and Superman clash several times, but each time Michaels is defeated, and his condition worsens every time he uses his powers.
Michaels begins raiding nuclear plants to power his implant, which brings him into conflict with Captain Atom, who defeats him. He also fights Thunder and Lightning and later the Birds of Prey, and is similarly defeated. He joins Lex Luthor's Society during Villains United.
Powers and Abilities
Michaels possesses a brain implant which allows him to concentrate thought waves into radioactive "brain blasts". He is of above average intelligence, and possesses skill as a scientist. He has access to various gadgets through his association with SKULL.
Michaels appears in his civilian form in the episode "Fugitive from Space". He is depicted as an average employee of STAR.
Michaels appears in the episode "Revelation", where he is depicted as a member of the Injustice League.