15 Characters That Wouldn't Exist Without Len Wein
#12- The Freedom Fighters
Black Condor, Doll Man, the Human Bomb, the Ray, Phantom Lady, and Uncle Sam were all properties of Quality Comics, but once they were acquired by DC, they were assembled as a group for the first time by Len Wein and Dick Dillin. The Freedom Fighters, as they came to be known, premiered in a Justice League of America/Justice Society of America team-up, which ran in Justice League of America #107–108 (October–December 1973). The DC version of the team was said to reside on Earth-X, where Nazi Germany eventually won a prolonged World War II. Three years after their DC Comics debut, the team was given their own self-titled ongoing series, which ran for 15 issues, and the characters have all appeared sporadically since then. Most notably, the Ray now serves as a member of Steve Orlando’s Justice League of America.
Nekron is perhaps best known as the main antagonist of the widely popular 2009-2010 storyline Blackest Night. However, his history spans all the way back to June 1981, where he made his first appearance in the pages of Tales of the Green Lantern Corps #2 by Len Wein, Mike W. Barr, and Joe Stanton. Primarily a Green Lantern villain, Nekron is an embodiment of death and the ruler of a region near Hell known as the Land of the Unliving, which also borders Limbo and Purgatory within the DC Multiverse. It’s from here that Nekron draws his power from the souls and spirits of all those who have ever died. He last appeared in a flashback in the current Green Lanterns series, as Volthoom pleaded with Nekron to allow him to die.
Clayface is a name that’s been used by a number of characters, each of which has served as thorns in the side of the Caped Crusader. However, the two we’re focusing on are Preston Payne and Sondra Fuller, who were created by Len Wein, Mike W. Barr, and Marshall Rogers. Payne made his debut in Detective Comics #477 (July-August 1978), while Fuller premiered in Outsiders #21 (July 1978), and the two became the third and fourth versions of Clayface, respectively. Together with the original Clayface, Basil Karlo, they went on to form a group known as the Mud Pak.