NIGHT THRASHER (Dwayne Taylor)

Night Thrasher

Real Name: Dwayne Michael Taylor
Aliases: None
Identity: Secret
Occupation: Former reality TV star, crimefighter, head of the Taylor Foundation
Citizenship: United States Citizen
Place of Birth: New York City, New York
Known Relatives: Daryl Taylor (father, deceased), Melody Ann Taylor (mother, deceased), Donyell Taylor (Bandit, bother), Elvin Holiday (Rage, ward), Zachary Smith Jr. (Microbe, ward, deceased)
Group Affiliation: Formerly New Warriors, Folding Circle, Psionex
First Appearance: Thor #411
History: Dwayne Taylor grew up believing his rich parents were killed by criminals for some unexplained reason. Taylor’s guardians, the ex-military sergeant Chord (a friend of his father’s) and the elderly martial arts master Tai, supported Taylor’s vow to make all criminals pay for their actions, helping him create the identity of Night Thrasher.

Taylor trained hard to be a skilled fighter. On his first outing, he met Midnight’s Fire and Silhouette. These two superhumans were taking out criminals by gaining their confidence and then busting them. Giving his name as Night Thrasher, Taylor joined them on their crusade. One night, while Silhouette was infiltrating a gunrunning operation, the police accidentally came upon them. Scared that the police were fixing to shoot his sister, Midnight’s Fire started to throw a blade at them. Taylor stopped him before he had a chance to throw it, and a gun battle erupted. Silhouette was hit and badly injured in the spine. Taylor, who had fallen in love with Silhouette, was heartbroken, as was Midnight’s Fire. Midnight’s Fire swore to get revenge on Taylor someday. Taylor left them, believing that Silhouette was dead.

Realizing that he needed more of an edge, Taylor trained even harder. Using his parent’s Taylor Foundation, Taylor had Chord provide him with a state-of-the-art headquarters, training facilities, and computer support systems. He also had developed specialized armor and weaponry. Taylor then decided to create a special team so he would have some backup. He recruited several young heroes and formed the New Warriors.

Shortly after they formed the team, Midnight’s Fire made an appearance and tried to frame Taylor with the murder of two policemen. In a final battle with Midnight’s Fire, Taylor overcame his fear of his nemesis and beat him in a battle. Taylor then discovered that Silhouette was still alive but crippled. She renounced her brother’s actions, turning him in to the police and joining Taylor in the New Warriors.

After the Warriors thwarted a plot by the criminal scientists of A.I.M., Taylor discovered a link between A.I.M.’s benefactors and the Taylor Foundation. With some investigation, he discovered dozens of illegal operations and shady business practices performed by the Foundation, linking them with criminal industrialist Gideon and the Japanese Yakuza syndicate, among others. Taylor used the Warriors to seek out the truth in confronting the Yakuza, but the team balked at making a deal with criminals. Taylor refused to budge, and the argument led him to quit the New Warriors.

Taylor was then approached by the criminal team Folding Circle, of which Midnight’s Fire was a part, since they promised to lead him to the truth of his past. In doing so, it was revealed that Taylor’s father, while in Vietnam, was captured by Tai, who was a powerful sorcerer guarding an ancient temple. Tai had coerced Taylor’s father and others in his military unit, including Chord, to have children with the women of the temple, in order that their children would later be sacrificed in the temple’s mystic well of dimensional energies and thereby give Tai even greater power. Chord and Taylor’s father tried to thwart this plot, and Chord was thus mystically ensorcelled to kill Taylor’s parents. The Folding Circle was comprised of the children of Tai’s prophecy, but it was assembling its members too early for Tai’s wishes. The New Warriors, investigating Night Thrasher’s activities, tracked the Circle to the Vietnamese temple, where they joined Folding Circle in a climatic battle with Tai. Ultimately, Tai was seemingly slain by the very energies she tried to master.

Taylor rejoined the New Warriors and served with them for a long tenure. He left the team eventually, rededicating himself to his role as chairman of the Taylor Foundation, although he would team up with them when the need arose. Later, Taylor decided to give up adventuring altogether, becoming a full-time director of the Taylor Foundation. He believed that true battles for justice would be fought in the boardrooms. He moved to the Seattle branch of the Foundation, seemingly disbanding the New Warriors.

Over time, however, the New Warriors reassembled without Taylor’s help. Even so, as the Warriors continued to use equipment and facilities associated with the Taylor Foundation, he was able to monitor the new version of the team. He even rejoined them briefly against the assassin Junzo Muto and agents of the Hand.

More recently, the Taylor Foundation suffered a massive downfall when its funding of cancer research banked on the efforts of Zachary Smith. Smith’s cure was revealed to be nothing more than his mutant son’s subconscious help. The Foundation’s stock tanked and Smith abandoned his son, but Dwayne Taylor stepped in to adopt the young mutant, now Microbe. However, it would require more creative solutions to save the Foundation. Night Thrasher made a deal with shady television executive Ashley Brothers to avoid bankruptcy, but this also forced the New Warriors into a unique re-branding as a reality-TV show. Hoping to make the best of the situation, the team hit the road to become heroes for the common man throughout small-town America.

The Warriors enjoyed mixed success and popularity, but the show was officially cancelled and bankruptcy proceedings were initiated. Even so, the Warriors were able to return and continue their reality-TV efforts. However, when they hoped to boost their ratings by apprehending a quartet of villains holed up in Stamford, Connecticut, tragedy struck. During the battle, Nitro used his power to cause a massive explosion. It killed Night Thrasher, the New Warriors, and almost everyone in the vicinity.

During a televised raid by the New Warriors of a building in which Cobalt Man, Speedfreak, Coldheart, and Nitro, who had recently escaped from the Raft, resided. Namorita followed after Nitro, slamming him into a bus. Nitro warned her that she wasn’t facing the kind of loser that she was used to facing. Nitro then ignited himself, causing a massive explosion that killed Namorita, Night Thrasher, Microbe, all of the children at the nearby elementary school, and all residents in the surrounding neighborhood where the fight took place.

Donyell Taylor soon took up the guise of Night Thrasher and formed his own team of New Warriors. He was able to find the bodies of Dwayne, Namorita and Microbe, confirming their deaths.

As it would turn out, later – in the events of Contest of Champions, Dwayne was plucked just moments before his death, and forced to take a part of the Contest of Champions, reversing his death. When the rest of his “team” was sent back to Earth, Dwayne was mistakenly sent back as well – alive and well.

During the events of Civil War II, Dwayne was seen working with both Iron Man and Captain Marvel, against an alien invasion, where he had helped save the life of a young, lost, girl.

Height: 6’3″
Weight: 220 lbs.
Eyes: Brown
Hair: Black
Powers: None.

Accessories: Carries two truncheons approximately 1′ in length. He has also used a variety of weaponry such as: pepper spray, an Adamantium garrote wire, plastique and napalm gel packs, an 8-inch spring-lock blade, and an uzi machine pistol. Night Thrasher wears a bulletproof suit of body armor that also contained hydraulic systems which increased his strength and ability to leap and to run for long distances. He has also used a variety of gadgets including magnesium flares, incendiary caps, smoke pellets, ball bearings, and spur jacks. His helmet includes a voice scrambler, infrared vision, telescopic vision, a built-in camera and film pack, a breathing apparatus with a 5-minute air supply, and enhanced listening devices. He formerly used a rocket-propelled skateboard for transportation. The skateboard could be used as a shield and contained a hidden spring-locked blade in the front.

Note: Extremely skilled hand-to-hand combatant, and master in an as-yet-unspecified Japanese martial art. Thrasher is also a trained gymnast, a talented weapons and armor designer. Also possesses a high proficiency in computer tapping, software coding, security set-up, and hacking. He also has proven to have mental barriers that provide him with increased resistance against telepathy and mental attacks.