An adventurer and soldier of fortune, Rex Mason was hired by businessman Simon Stagg
to retrieve the ancient artefact known as the Orb of Ra
. Around this time he became involved in a romantic relationship with Sapphire Stagg
, Simon Stagg's daughter. Leaving on his trip, Mason locates the Orb, but is double-crossed by Stagg's bodyguard Java
and abandoned, unconscious, in an ancient pyramid. There, he becomes accidentally irradiated by the mysterious meteorite that was used to create the Orb of Ra. As a result of the radiation, he gains superpowers.
Metamorpho was created by Bob Haney
and Ramona Fradon
His original appearances in the Silver Age
gave his origin, which remains largely unchanged to this day, as well as introducing his first death.
Following his reappearance in the Bronze Age
, Metamopho's first death appeared to have been retconned
out of existence.
Metamorpho's origin and past has remained largely unchanged. His original limitation to only transmute his body into elements found in the human body has gradually disappeared over the years.
Major Story Arcs
Returning home, he finds himself to be easily controlled by Stagg, due to the detrimental impact the Orb of Ra has on his transformed body. Stagg manipulates him to his own ends, though Metamorpho does his best to use his new powers to fight evil. Viewing his powers as an affliction, Metamorpho seeks out assistance in returning himself to normal. To this end he goes to the Justice League
, who are unable to help him. He later rejects their offer of membership in the League, still determined to cure himself. He continues fighting evil, teaming with various other heroes during his adventures.
After Sapphire marries another man, Metemorpho falls in with a man named Mr Shadow, with whom he works to take down a tyrannical queen. Mr Shadow is ultimately revealed to have been trying to control Metamorpho for his own ends. He abandons Metamorpho to be tried for the murder of Sapphire's husband, Wally Bannister. Despite the murder having been committed by Algon, another man with metamorphic powers, Metamorpho is convicted in a kangaroo court and executed. He is later revived by Element Girl
Travelling to Markovia
to seek the assistance of a Markovian scientist who may have a cure for his condition, Metamorpho finds himself caught up in Batman's
attempts to rescue his associate, Lucius Fox
. He aids Batman and a small team of heroes in rescuing Fox from Baron Bedlam
, and when their mission is over agrees to remain with the group. He comes up with the name for his new group: The Outsiders
. During his time with the Outsiders he is nearly cured by the Markovian scientist Dr Helen Jace
, but is killed by Simon Stagg when he goes to meet with Sapphire. The Outsiders manage to revive him by transporting his body back to 1200 BCE and exposing him to the radioactive material again. Unfortunately, this second exposure renders his transformation officially permanent. Returning to his present, he becomes engaged to Sapphire. Following an assassination attempt on Stagg that is foiled by the Outsiders, Metamorpho is given Stagg's blessing to marry Sapphire.
Shortly after his marriage, Metamorpho's life is disrupted when the Manhunters
activate their sleeper agents on Earth. Amongst these agents is Dr Jace, now the scientific advisor for the team and friend of Metamorpho. He attempts to fight back against these agents alongside the other Outsiders, but is revealed to have been brainwashed by Jace. He perishes in the fighting.
Metamorpho is revived by the Dominators
' gene bomb. Suffering from temporary amnesia, he seeks out and joins the Justice League Europe
, with whom he works for some time. He eventually encounters Sapphire again, and learns about the child they have together, Joey. He also learns that Sapphire has been forced to marry Java, and she and Metamorpho part ways for some time. Metamorpho soon learns that his son has been affected by the meteor, and randomly transmutes the elements around him, often inflicting great suffering on those around him. The baby is ultimately cured by contact with the meteor.
Death and Return
Metamorpho is on the Justice League of America satellite when it is attacked by the Hyperclan
. He saves three of the Leaguers during reentry by encasing them in a fluid-filled ball, but in the process is rendered inert, essentially dying. He is declared dead and buried. He is later briefly revived by the Id
at the request of his son, but following the Id's defeat he is returned to his resting place. His spirit lives on, however, and he is ultimately able to make contact with Sapphire, who uses the Orb of Ra to revive him. Back to life, he is invited by Thayer Jost
to become a member of the Doom Patrol
, which he does briefly. An accident during an experiment briefly transforms Simon, Sapphire and Joey into energy beings, as well as giving Metamorpho the form and personality of Java. Metamorpho is able to reverse the transformations with the assistance of Black Canary
Metamorpho reveals that the Metamorpho who has been working with the Outsiders for some time is in fact a regrown fragment of his own body. After the intervention of the Outsiders he decides not to reassimilate this fragment, allowing it to take on a life of its own. This fragment takes on the name Shift and leads an independent life for some time before deciding to become reassimilated into Metamorpho following the One Year Later
, during which he had inadvertantly cause the deaths of 44 people. Metamorpho and the other Outsiders are later apparently killed in a satellite explosion.
The New 52
The Outsiders, Metamorpho among them, are revealed to have survived due to the intervention of Metamorpho, who created a fluid-filled ball similar to the one he had used to save the Leaguers some years previously. He is later amongst those considered for membership in Justice League International
, but ultimately rejected.
Powers and Abilities
Metamorpho is able to transmute his body in whole or in part into any element. He is able to combine and shape these elements at will. He is also capable of shapeshifting, and can reshape parts of his body and the whole at his will, including being able to stretch his body; he can also be solid, liquid or gas. His transmuted body is resistant to blunt force and energy attacks. He appears to be functionally immortal, particularly in his inert state. He is a skilled martial artist, as well as an archaeologist and a detective. He is weak to the Orb of Ra, which is like kryptonite to him.
Animation The DCAU
Metamorpho appears in the two-part Justice League
episode "Metamorphosis". These episodes re-imagine his origin, which is ascribed to mutagenic gas that he was exposed to by Simon Stagg. He later makes non-speaking cameo appearances in the Justice League Unlimited
episodes "Initiation", "Clash", "Panic in the Sky", and "Destroyer". He is voiced by Tom Sizemore. Batman: The Brave and the Bold
Metamorpho appears alongside other members of the Outsiders in the episode "Enter the Outsiders!" He is a teenager in this appearance, and portrayed as a lighthearted character. He later appears in the episodes "Duel of the Double Crossers!" and "Inside the Outsiders!", the latter of which deals with his emotional turmoil and anger over his appearance. An older version of Metamorpho appears alongside the other Outsiders in the opening to the episode "Requiem for a Scarlet Speedster!" He is voiced by Scott Menville.
Beware the Batman
Metamorpho is set to appear in this upcoming television series.
Film Justice League: The New Frontier
Metamorpho makes a brief non-speaking cameo appearance at the end of this film.