Cursed by an ancient alien gem, pilot Colonel John Jameson transforms into the ferocious, feral Man-Wolf—a beast he barely controls but tries to bend to his will as a force for good.
By the Light of the Moon
Forged into a brilliant pilot and astronaut by his overbearing father, J. Jonah Jameson, John Jameson exerts himself to be his own man and overcomes all odds. After encounters with Peter Parker, AKA Spider-Man, and spores from Jupiter that nearly make him a Super Hero, he takes on a mission to the moon, one which sets him on a path that would haunt him for the rest of his life.
On the moon, Jameson finds a glittering red gemstone he later has made into a pendant on Earth. Jameson later learns that the gem is actually the Godstone, AKA Weirdstone or Moonstone, previously possessed by the lupine Stargod, an ancient and benevolent ruler of a swords and sorcery dimension called Other Realm.
Soon after Jameson dons the Godstone pendant, the gem grafts itself to his neck and when bathed in moonlight, he transforms into a man-wolf hybrid creature. However, the radiation that leaks from the portal is weak and therefore, John’s transformation to Stargod is only partial, leaving him mostly unintelligent in the form. Jameson runs amuck until Spider-Man tears the stone from his neck and hurls into the river, hoping to end Man-Wolf’s rampage forever.
Wild Wolf Wonders
John Jameson ranks as one of the world’s greatest pilots and his military training makes him well-versed in combat techniques and weapons-use. Over the years, he’s also picked up knowledge of security operations and mercenary practices.
Under the influence of the alien gemstone, Jameson’s wolf form exhibits high degrees of strength—lifting about 4 tons—speed, reflexes, agility, and stamina, as well as heightened senses and the ability to heal quickly from wounds. Man-Wolf’s teeth and claws are razor-sharp, and his furry coat grants him great defense against extreme cold. Due to the fact that he is not a true werewolf, he possesses no vulnerability to silver, though he appears to succumb to mind-control fairly easily, perhaps due to Jameson’s normal human intelligence being subdued while in beast-mode.
All these attributes wax and wane in potency with the strength of the moonlight he’s exposed to at any given time.
As Stargod, in addition to his abilities as Man-Wolf, he can lift at least 10 tons, teleport, fly, survive in space, detect someone by scent across the galaxy, and project heat beams from his eyes. During this time, he possesses telepathy and has some degree of energy manipulation, although the full extent of his powers remain undefined. His powers are greatest in Other Realm. He sometimes wears scale mail armor and wields a dagger, short bow and arrows, and a sacred broadsword. While Stargod, he’s highly skilled in swordsmanship and archery.
Foes of the Fang
While not a true super hero the likes of his allies Captain America and Spider-Man, John Jameson’ clashes with powerful persons garner him a clutch of opponents worthy of costumed crusaders. This group includes the Smythes, Spencer and Alastair; Tyrk, the God-King of Other Realm; Dr. Michael Morbius, AKA Morbius, the Living Vampire, the Monster Maker, Dredmund Druid and Dr. Tilda Johnson, AKA Nightshade; and the alien symbiote Carnage.
Despite his uncontrollable transformations and bestial urges, John Jameson’s managed to form a circle of friends and allies throughout his tumultuous life, including short-lived romances.
Although almost never seeing eye-to-eye with his father, the pilot maintains a relationship with J. Jonah Jameson through thick and thin, and the elder Jameson consistently exhibits a desire to do what’s best for his son. In the hero world, both Spider-Man and Steve Rogers, AKA Captain America, take chances on John Jameson, believing in him and trusting the man will always win out over the wolf.
While he can never be labeled a wolf when it comes to the ladies, Jameson’s romances, while overall brief, have been strong while they lasted. His engagement to Kristine Saunders lasts through many of his bouts as Man-Wolf, but ultimately the two part ways. This opens the door for his relationships with Dr. Ashley Kafka and Jennifer Walters, AKA She-Hulk, the latter of which he marries but subsequently divorces.
Man or Wolf?
Not long after what he believed to be his one and only ordeal as Man-Wolf, Jameson found himself under the influence of Morbius, the Living Vampire and once more attached to the gemstone. After being freed from Morbius’ bondage by Spider-Man, the pilot returned to NASA but ended up hunted by the police and ex-CIA agent Simon Stroud. Stroud tracked Man-Wolf to the Statue of Liberty but the beast fell from the statue’s torch and escaped.
Meanwhile, the sorcerer Arisen Tyrk–who had risen to become the tyrannical God-King of Other Realm–sought to forestall the Stargod prophecy and to claim the Godstone for himself. He tracked the gem’s energies to Earth and, as Harrisyn Turk, acted through intermediaries to avoid being confronted by the Godstone’s power. “Turk” hired Sergei Kravinoff, AKA Kraven the Hunter, to capture Man-Wolf, learn his strengths, and arrange for the deaths of Kristine and Jonah. Stroud disrupted the plan and arrested John for being AWOL, but John escaped and hitchhiked south, befriending free-spirited couple Joel and Mary Stevens in Georgia and becoming involved in the Adolf Hitler clone, AKA Hate-Monger’s plan to reclaim his space station from NASA. Nick Fury and S.H.I.E.L.D. thwarted this scheme but Joel was murdered by Hate-Monger’s henchman, Red Hate. Jameson was put back into active NASA duty by Fury and sent to an orbiting space station that had gone radio silent.
On the station, Jameson discovered rebels from another dimension called Other Realm who attempted to take the gemstone from him. Transformed again into Man-Wolf, the rebels captured him while Tyrk, the so-called God-King of Other Realm, abducted Jameson’s fiancée Kristine and took her to the far-off dimension. The pilot followed with the rebels and once there became Man-Wolf with a difference—his full intelligence intact.
In Other Realm, Jameson learned the origins of his pendant. Stargod, the wolf-like monarch of Other Realm found the gem on Earth’s moon long before and discovered it to be part of a larger collection of alien power artifacts. Having then grown old, Stargod left his dimension to die on the moon and in doing so abandoned the stone there for Jameson to find. A prophecy existed on Other Realm which foretold the return of Stargod and Man-Wolf was hailed as the new ruler and a bane to Tyrk’s tyranny.
With a sacred sword given to him by the rebels, Man-Wolf led a rebellion against the God-King, and with the full power of Stargod within him, destroyed Other Realm’s capital city and deposed Tyrk. Once back on Earth with Kristine, Jameson lost his Stargod abilities and his full intelligence when transformed into Man-Wolf. After being kidnapped along with the Frankenstein’s Monster by the Monster Maker, Man-Wolf once again fell into the hands of law enforcement, that time in the form of S.H.I.E.L.D.
In time, the gemstone began to poison the pilot and so his father and Dr. Marla Madison placed him into a deep cryogenic suspension until the evil Professor Spencer Smythe attempted to use Man-Wolf as an instrument of revenge against J. Jonah Jameson. Smythe planted a deadly substance in Jameson, but the gemstone protected him by transporting him to Other Realm, and act that failed, but did at least cure him of the poison coursing through his body. Jameson found that Other Realm was shrinking to microscopic size and only accessible through the radioactive blood of the heroine She-Hulk. Together with Patsy Walker, AKA Hellcat, and She-Hulk, Man-Wolf prevented Other Realm from growing ever smaller and returned it to its proper size.
Back on Earth, Jameson and his father sought Dr. Curt Connors, AKA Lizard, to apply a biomagnetic application to the gemstone and allow his body to reject it. Once separated from it, the stone crumbled into dust, as did Jameson’s relationship with Kristine Saunders. Feeling the weight of all his Man-Wolf adventures on his mind, the pilot retired to a sanitarium to revive and recuperate his sanity and spirit.
Feeling his old self again thereafter, Jameson accepted a position as Captain America’s personal Quinjet pilot and driver, a situation which placed him in the middle of many of Cap’s missions. He goes through a couple aliases, Skywolf and Vanwolf, assists Cap for the Bloodstone Hunt and against Wilson Fisk, AKA Kingpin, and Johann Shmidt, AKA Red Skull. During this time, Dredmund Druid and scientist Dr. Tilda Johnson, AKA Nightshade, used the powdered gemstone to turn an entire small town’s population into werewolves, forcing John to become Man-Wolf again and aid Captain America in halting the villains’ scheme. In the end, Nightshade’s antidote cured him and he resigned his position due to his compelling attraction to the hero’s girlfriend, Rachel Leighton, AKA Diamondback.
A turn at monster-hunting around the world led Jameson to a job as chief of security at the Ravencroft Institute and a romance with its director, Dr. Ashley Kafka. He was later fired after a run-in with the criminal Dmitri Kravinoff, AKA Chameleon, and then also fell under the hypnotism of Maguire Beck, AKA Mad Jack, and directed to kill his father. The plot was foiled when Dr. Kafka also hypnotized Jameson to break Mad Jack’s spell and temporarily transform into Man-Wolf. With the knowledge of the gemstone’s residual and seemingly permanent effects on him, he went on to be a social worker in New York City, hoping to put all the insanity in his life behind him for good.
As before, it just wasn’t to be for the doomed pilot. He drifted from work with the Howling Commandos to re-upping with the Air Force and intermittent encounters as Man-Wolf. A reunion with She-Hulk blossomed into romance and even wedded bliss, but following a battle with the jade giantess brought about by the machinations of Alastair Smythe, in which Jameson once again became Stargod, the two separated and later annulled their marriage.
In recent times, John Jameson’s taken up duties as both himself and Man-Wolf with such groups as NASA, the FBI’s Symbiote Taskforce, the Agents of Wakanda, and the Aberrant Crimes Division to battle the Church of the New Darkness. He had a clash with the symbiote Carnage, and Fisk, the then Mayor of New York City, bribed Man-Wolf into working with him using video footage of him as the symbiote. He then appointed him as Ravencroft Institute’s warden.