An alien from Kakaranthara, Fin Fang Foom is a giant Dragon Lord and former starship navigator. He becomes a rampaging menace on Earth but it’s not always his fault since many villains use this green goliath to their own nefarious ends.
The dragon-like being known as Fin Fang Foom comes from the peaceful planet Kakaranathara (aka Maklu IV), which he and his fellow Dragon Lords departed in search of other worlds to conquer. As their starship’s navigator, Foom uses 10 incredibly powerful rings to guide the craft. At some point between 4,000-5,000 years ago, Foom enters Earth’s atmosphere and his ship crash-lands in what would become China.
The crew emerges from their wrecked vehicle but suffers an attack by human soldiers, Chinese warriors. A soldier slashes one of Foom’s crewmates, Axon-Karr, in the throat who flees back into the starcraft while the rest of the disoriented Kakaranatharans escape into a nearby valley.
Axon-Karr dies, and his corpse and the starship are placed in a cave. Elsewhere, Foom and the other survivors reside for a time in what would become known as the Valley of the Dragons. There, they hone their shape-shifting skills to take on human appearances. While the rest of the crew are sent out into the world to assimilate into humanity, the ship’s captain, Chen Hsu, orders Foom to remain behind in his real form, though at a size larger than normal (roughly 32 feet, 44 feet including his tail). Hsu uses an unidentified herb to put Foom into a deep slumber, in which he’s meant to stay until Hsu reawakens him.
Over the centuries, however, Foom awakens and periodically emerges from his cavernous lair to terrorize the countryside. He encounters the likes of the legendary Hydra of Greece; similar dragon monsters Kee Kaa Kon, Lo Lin Laam and Tiik Taak Toe, all of whom he defeats; immortal monster hunter Ulysses Bloodstone, whose confrontation with the dragon remains undocumented; and finally the Asgardian god Thor, who slays Foom’s mortal body, eventually using its skeleton to construct the Tomb of Eitri in Ymir-Krul.
Foom somehow re-forms in a new body and returns to the Valley of the Dragons. While he remains deep in his slumber, human guards barricade the entrance to his cave, and maintain a patrol to keep out trespassers.
Powers of a Dragon
Fin Fang Foom’s powers are either natural to his race, or at least naturally attainable. He can fly at subsonic speeds using the wings on his back, survive in the void of space, and alter his shape and size. He is immensely strong, possessing Class 100 strength. Foom can expel a combustible acid mist resembling fire from his mouth in powerful blasts.
He has an extraordinarily long lifespan, and can communicate telepathically. He is able to transmit his spirit into the bodies of other beings, possessing them and turning them into duplicates of his original form. Foom can also place his own body within other beings, using them as shells that he can control, though this apparently kills the host in the process. He has also shown the ability to mentally control other reptilian life forms, even using them to merge together to form a new body for him. If necessary, his spirit can possess inanimate objects, though he remains physically inert in such forms.
After he becomes reduced to human size, he loses most of his abilities due to post-hypnotic suggestion, though anger can still cause him to emit his acid mist.
Foom masters a fighting style similar to human martial arts. He is vulnerable to the scent of an unidentified herbal leaf, which can quickly put him into a sleep for extremely long periods. This same herb can revive him from such a slumber.
Foom is familiar with his home planet’s technology and is an accomplished spacecraft navigator. He is an exceptional chef and chess player.
Here Be Dragons
Many try to use the monstrously-sized Foom for their own nefarious deeds and battles, such as Taiwanese student Chan Liuchow and the evil mastermind Dr. Aloysius Vault. Taneleer Tivan, AKA the Collector, even adds Foom to his collection as a prize to be ogled at.
Foom is oftentimes treated as a monster for his sometimes monstrous acts, some of his own volition, by the likes of the Fantastic Four, James Rhodes, AKA War Machine and Tony Stark, AKA Iron Man, who all relocate him to Monster Island on a couple occasions.
One of Foom’s most frequent antagonists is Bruce Banner, AKA the Hulk, in part because of their first encounter when Foom attempts to use his form as a host body.
A Dragon’s Cohorts
Foom becomes It, the Living Colossus’ ally only after he is pitted against the stony creature by Vault. When an electric shock breaks Vault’s mental hold over Foom, Foom then sides with It.
Foom also teams up with his kind, such as other Dragon Lords. He also allies with the Agents of Wakanda after he purges himself of his dark emotions, which turn into creatures and attack him.
Foom’s Full Story
Due to political tensions between China, which had taken on a communist regime during the 20th century, and Taiwan, Taiwanese student Chan Liuchow sought a way to help his country against China. Discovering an ancient manuscript pertaining to the legend of Fin Fang Foom, Liuchow made his way to China in search of the Valley of the Dragons. Eluding the guards, he found the sleeping Foom and used the herb mentioned in the manuscript to awaken the monster. He taunted Foom, and the angry dragon blindly followed him into nearby Chinese military camps, where Foom obliterated the communist forces. Liuchow then led Foom back to the Valley and tricked Foom into resuming his slumber.
This period of time, dubbed the “Age of Monsters” due to the proliferation of giant monsters such as Fin Fang Foom rampaging throughout the world, ended in recent years with the reemergence of large numbers of super-powered humans, the most since World War II. Some of the earliest of these were the Fantastic Four, who began to relocate many of the monsters they defeated to Monster Island in the Pacific Ocean. During the FF’s early adventures, they encountered a reawakened Foom, and took him to Monster Island after defeating the dragon. Foom quickly departed the island and, still not at full strength since his defeat by Thor, opted to take refuge in Antarctica. There he became encased underneath the ice, where he was found by a group of scientists studying global warming.
Emerging, he possessed the form of Dr. Jerry Carpenter and returned to the group’s base, where the rest were dealing with Bruce Banner, whom they found near death in the snow. Foom abandoned Carpenter’s form for that of Dr. Carl Roberts. When a confrontation between Banner and Dr. Howard Tonkins resulted in Banner’s transforming into his alter ego, the Hulk, Foom realized the potential of using the Hulk as a host to regain his strength and revealed his own true identity. The Hulk attacked Foom, who tried to convince the Hulk to ally with him against the humans. Bored by Foom, the Hulk told Foom that he would take Earth and the dragon could have everything else. The Hulk then threw Foom with such force that the dragon left Earth’s atmosphere and, finding himself closer to it, made his way to the moon, where he awaited a way to return.
He was apparently found there by the Collector, one of the Elders of the Universe, who placed Foom in his zoo of giant monsters somewhere beneath Canada. Harvey Elder, AKA Mole Man, desired the monsters for his own collection and assaulted the Collector’s base, freeing the creatures. While many of them went on to rampage throughout New York City, Foom instead apparently returned to the Valley of the Dragons. He was located there by evil mastermind Dr. Aloysius Vault, who sought a way to defeat his arch-nemesis, stony giant It, the Living Colossus. Vault awakened Foom again and tried to place the dragon under his mental control. Foom quickly shook off Vault’s control and ended up aiding It against an invading alien race called Stonians, led by Granitor. Depleted by the battle, Foom could not resist a second attempt by Vault to control him, and Foom attacked the Colossus. The two fought until Foom was driven into electric power lines, which broke Vault’s hold over him. Unable to speak due to unrevealed reasons, Foom drew an image of Vault’s face in the ground to explain to the Colossus who was controlling him. Foom and It parted as allies, and Foom returned to the Valley of the Dragons.
When the Beyond Reason Spiritual Fellowship cult sought a host for their god, the demon Aan Taanu, they chose Fin Fang Foom. Aan Taanu possessed Foom’s body, transforming it into a slightly more demonic version, then summoned the cult’s high priestess, Hildreth, to its realm and mated with her in order to father a new race that would take over the world. The demon-possessed Foom battled the supernatural Legion of Night, which included his old foe Chan Liuchow in its roster. The Legion’s young mystic, Arianne Wright, tore the unborn fetus from Hildreth’s womb, killing both the fetus and Hildreth. Legion leader Omen then threw his magic sword into Aan Taanu’s head, banishing him back to his realm and preventing his immediate return. Fin Fang Foom plunged into New York Harbor and disappeared, eventually returning to the Valley of the Dragons.
Meanwhile, Foom’s Kakaranatharan captain, Chen Hsu, began to set in motion his master plan. Allied with the Mandarin, a Chinese Super Villain who had discovered the tomb of Axon-Karr and was using the ten rings for his own ends, Hsu set out to revive Foom, the Mandarin being unaware of Hsu’s true nature. The Mandarin woke Foom, who declined to help, wanting no part of human affairs. Growing angry, Foom slaughtered numerous humans nearby, but when he turned his attention to Mandarin, Hsu placed Foom back into his slumber. Aware now of who Hsu was, Foom reawakened and allied with the two against James Rhodes (but at the time was going by the moniker Iron Man). As Foom battled Iron Man, Hsu telepathically called to the rest of the Kakaranatharans, signaling them to return to his side. To help Iron Man, Tony Stark (also doubling as Iron Man during this period) sent a remote-controlled suit of armor to aid his friend, to little effect.
As the rest of the Dragon Lords arrived, Hsu and his crew demanded the Mandarin return their rings to them. Feeling betrayed, the Mandarin allied with both Rhodes and Stark, who had just arrived as Iron Man, against the dragons. To defeat the aliens, Stark charged the rings with his own energy, overloading them and causing an explosion equivalent to a small nuclear bomb. While most of the Kakaranatharans were apparently killed in the blast, including Foom’s physical body, Foom’s spirit took refuge in a small dragon statue that was exported to America, which made its way to Asia House Curios in Seattle. The statue caught the eye of Billy Yuan, who stole it, and it seemingly granted him power–though in actuality, Foom had entered Yuan’s body. The super-powered Yuan rampaged through Seattle until being defeated by Stark. Foom called forth hordes of reptiles from the nearby sewers and elsewhere, and merged all of their forms with Yuan, recreating Foom’s original body. As Foom battled Iron Man, Yuan’s mind fought for control of the shared body, eventually regaining it briefly, just long enough to allow Iron Man to defeat the dragon. Successful, Yuan allowed his spirit to slip into nothingness. Iron Man handed the unconscious Foom over to the United States Navy and Sunset Bain of Baintronics, who had subcontracted with the Navy to handle Foom. He was eventually relocated to Monster Island again.
While residing on Monster Island, Foom and other giant monsters on the island confronted a league of heroes from another dimension, who were searching for the Ultimate Nullifier. No match for the heroes, Foom and the other monsters were quickly subdued. While on Monster Island, Foom reassessed his existence. He began to dabble in Buddhism and hired lawyers from the Goodman, Lieber, Kurtzberg & Holliway (GLKH) firm to fight what he believed to be his wrongful imprisonment on the island. The legal battle was successful, and Foom and three other giant creatures (the Deviant mutate Gorgilla, the alien child Googam and the robotic Elektro) were granted their releases with conditions. All four were shrunk to human size and given jobs within the Baxter Building, home of the Fantastic Four. Foom took on the role of master chef at the Green Wok, a restaurant in the Baxter Building. When Googam accidentally opened a portal to the Microverse, allowing the warlord Tim Boo Ba and his legion of followers to invade Earth, Foom, Gorgilla and Elektro staved off the army. Tim Boo Ba escaped the building and Foom, with the other three, commandeered a Fantasti-Car to follow him, eventually defeating him near the Statue of Liberty. The quartet, dubbed the Fin Fang Four, became media heroes for their efforts.
Though Fin Fang Foom still despised humanity, he continued to try to fit in. While returning home from grocery shopping during the Christmas holidays, he was recognized by Wong, manservant to Earth’s Sorcerer Supreme Doctor Strange, who gushed to the dragon about studying his legend at the monastery of Kamar-Taj. When agents of Hydra attacked the city with a giant Santa Claus robot, Wong urged Foom to help, but Foom declined. However, seeing Wong valiantly try to fight the terrorists alone, Foom joined the fray, defeating the Hydra agents and apparently killing a number of them.
Foom later successfully had his GLKH lawyers end the Fin Fang Four’s required parole visits to psychiatrist Dr. Leonard Samson, AKA Doc Samson. Though no longer seeking to conquer the world, Fin Fang Foom still sees humanity as beneath him.
Foom later battled Squirrel Girl and won, was taking over by psychic mutant Mentallo in a scheme coordinated by Roxxon Energy Corporation to drill for oil. Foom was later conjured through a wishing well created by Monica Rappaccini, A.I.M. Scientist Supreme, from the villain Romulus Augustulus, AKA Tyrannus’ Fountain of Youth. Foom ended up in the Dark Dimension alongside other monsters and Tyrannus fighting Hulk and Betty Ross, AKA Red She-Hulk, in a wishing war. Though Foom was ultimately defeated by the pair.
When summoned against his will by Kei Kawade, AKA Kid Kaiju, through Kawade’s drawing of him, Foom ended up in another battle against the Hulk. When the Leviathons appeared all over the world, Foom communicated how reckless Kawade was being with his drawings. Foom then rallied other monsters to help defeat the Leviathons. After the Leviathons were defeated, Foom was teleported to Hell’s Kitchen to aid the Heroes for Hire against additional Leviathons. In battling the Leviathon Mother, Foom gets swallowed but when she’s defeated, Foom is restored and warned Kawade about summoning him and his fellow monsters again.
Choosing to cleanse himself of his inner demons, Foom does so but it reduces his overall size. His negative emotions turned into Makluans and they saw Foom as a coward, forcing him to flee from their wrath. He sought out the Avengers but found the Agents of Wakanda instead who fought off the Makluans. He hid but when Broo encouraged him to face his demons, Foom did so and re-merged with them. Doing so resulted in him attacking the heroes but Broo convinced him otherwise and Foom left, but not before agreeing to a truce between him and the heroes.