A Life of Crime
As a boy, Roscoe Dillon was fascinated by tops. Dillon became a small time criminal, and while in jail, decided he needed a new, successful motif for committing crimes, so he turned to his love of tops. He created the costumed identity of the Top and learned how to spin himself at unusual speeds just like a Top. Dillon went on to discover that the spinning somehow increased his intelligence and enabled him to devise a wide array of unusual weapons in the form of tops.
The top began to commit daring robberies in Central City, and came to the attention of the Flash (Barry Allen). On a number of occasions, Top teamed up with other members of the Flash's rogues gallery, but always came unstuck against the Scarlet Speedster.
The Top became romantically attached to Lisa Snart, sister of Captain Cold. The Top coached Lisa on spinning which enabled the already talented skater to become even better.
Eventually, the continual spinning around caused the Top's brain to be affected to the point where he developed mind over matter powers. During an encounter with the Flash, the Flash's super speed vibrations somehow, unwittingly, lethally affected the Top's super powered brain. Before he died, the Top decided he was going to destroy Central City through a series of powerful bomb explosions. However, with the aid of the Rogues, the Flash managed to save the City.
Lisa Snart blamed the Flash for the death of her lover, and she took on the persona of the Golden Glider, trying on a number of occasions to avenge Roscoe's death.
The Top's will was too strong however. Not even death could hold him. When the Flash's parents were in a car accident. When Henry Allen's heart stopped for thirty seconds, Dillon's mind took over his body. For years, the Top watched the Flash, learning all of his secrets. He attacked the Flash's mother and eventually teamed up with his old girlfriend, Golden Glider. The Top's spirit was eventually exorcised.
Once again, the Top returned, this time inhabiting the body of a man who was left in a coma after a boating accident. He attacked Barry Allen's lab and parents again. The Flash finally found the Top digging up his wife Iris' grave and decided enough was enough.
The Secret of Barry Allen
After Dr. Light raped Sue Dibny, the Justice League took a vote to let Zatanna lobotomize the villain. In the wake of that decision, Barry decided that they had done the wrong thing. He managed to convince Zatanna to use her magic again only this time instead of making their foe harmless, the Flash wanted to make him into an ally.
The Top fought alongside the Flash but was tortured by his past. He felt awful about all the things he had done and wanted to be a better hero. Eventually, he snapped, going after the Rogues. The Flash managed to stop Roscoe from killing the Rogues but the Top's mind left his body, unable to remain in control. It was later revealed that the Top had used his own mind over matter powers to hypnotize the Rogues that day. Captain Cold and Golden Glider went straight for awhile and became bounty hunters. The Pied Piper became a hero. The Trickster and Heat Wave joined the FBI (with Heat Wave working for the fire department before that). All of these actions were revealed to have been the result of the Top's mind control.
Later, the Top would come back to inhabit the body of politician Thomas O'Neill. He battled the Flash as well as Hawk and Dove on occasion before being locked up in Iron Heights. He escaped and tried to rejoin the Rogues, but was rejected. They were never on the friendliest terms even before the Top attacked them and with his sanity so clearly gone, Cold had Mirror Master toss the Top out of their hideout.
After the events of Identity Crisis, Green Arrow gave the Flash (now Wally West) a letter from his uncle Barry. Barry explained how he and Zatanna had taken the Top's mind and changed it. He knew that he would die soon (during the Crisis on Infinite Earths) so he asked Wally to give the Top his mind back. He'd be a villain again but at least he'd be sane. They succeeded in this but Dillion managed to escape, warning the heroes that they couldn't trust any of the Rogues and that one day he'd take it all back and make them all criminals again.
Soon afterward, two groups of Rogues clashed. Captain Cold lead his criminal Rogues: Mirror Master (McCulloch), Weather Wizard, Captain Boomerang (Owen Mercer) and the Trickster (Axel Walker) against the Trickster (James Jesse) and his FBI funded Rogues: Heat Wave, Pied Piper and Magenta.
The Flash interrupted their battle, trying to stop both teams. The Top appeared, and freed Piper, James and Heat Wave from his mind control.
James found his mind cleared and with help from an interference from Top, easily bested Axel Walker, telling him that if he ever wore his costume or called himself the Trickster, he'd have to answer to him. Piper became angry and attacked the Flash, but when Wally removed his mask, this brought back all the memories of their friendship and Piper was passed out. He'd later reveal himself to still be a hero despite the awful memories and feels the Top gave back to him. Heat Wave found his mental state as unstable as ever and rejoined Cold's Rogues.
When Cold refused the Top's offer to team up, the Top responded by hypnotizing his own group of Rogues: Plunder, Tar Pit, Murmur, Double Down and Girder. He set his "teammates" against the Flash but in the ensuing chaos, the Top didn't notice Captain Cold approaching him. With one shot from his cold gun, the Captain froze the Top solid. Cold scolded Dillon for forgetting one of the most important Rogue Rules - not to fight other Rogues. With that, he took his gun and shattered the frozen Top.
The Top is seen in Blackest Night #2 as a member of the Black Lantern Corps with his fellow dead rogues. Captain Cold froze him solid in front of Zoom's cell, holding him until the Black Rings were deactivated.
Powers and Abilities
The Top is able to spin at incredible speeds. The spinning for some reason also gave him increased intelligence. The Top’s spinning eventually gives him powerful telekinetic and telepathic powers due to the stimulation of his brain cells. Since his soul returned from hell, he has developed a new mental ability that allows him to induce severe disorientation and vertigo in his victims.
The Top also uses spinning tops with gimmicks to them such as glue, explosives, oil and gases. He once built a massive "Atomic grenade top" that could have destroyed half of the world.
Since his return, he has also had some kind of unexplained resistance against magic. most notably, resisting and being unaffected by Zatanna's spells.
25th century Top
In the recent Flash series focusing on Barry Allen a future incarnation of the Top has arrived from the future apparently still calling himself the Top. It is unknown what connection he has to the original Top other than having similar powers and appearance. Unlike the present Top though 25th century Top is a law-enforcement officer a member of Reverse-Flash Task Force called the Renegades, who used the gimmicks of the Rogues to combat the evil Flash of their time. It should be noted that Top is the only member of the Renegades that does not use a differing name from the original Rogue,
The Top broke off from the main group of Renegades after they began fighting against the Rogues to warn the Flash about why they were there- the Rogues were going to break one of Sam Scudder's mirrors, unleashing the Mirror Lords, culminating in Iris Allen and Mirror Monarch's death. The Top, however, had lied to the Flash- the Mirror Lords did not exist. The mirror instead contained a "slow acting poison", and while the Flash was inside the mirror, Top confronted Iris Allen over evidence she had found.
Justice League Unlimited
Top appears in Justice League Unlimited episode ''Flash and Substance'' entering a bar with Weather Wizard before Flash's enemies attack the Flash Museum. In this episode, a statue of Top can also be seen in the background during the battle. He was also appears as a member of the Secret Society in episode ''Dead Reckoning'' and ''The Great Brain Robbery''.
Batman: the Brave and the Bold
Top has a minor appereance in eleventh episode of the Batman: The Brave and the Bold series: " Return of the Fearsome Fangs! ". He is captured by Batman when he is trying to rob a bank in Gotham. During capture Batman has an extracorporeal vision with his master Wong Fei. At the end Batman knocks out Top. He later makes cameo appearances in "Night of Huntress" as an inmate at Blackgate Penitentiary, and "Mayhem Of The Music Meister" as an inmate at Arkham Asylum. In "Aquaman's Outrageous Adventure," Aquaman sees Top fighting Red Tornado as he drives by. Red Tornado manages to defeat Top.