Nightmare

Mortal Guise: Edvard Haberdash
First Appearance: Strange Tales 110
What's His Problem? Nightmare is the demonic lord of the Nightmare World, where he monitors, regulates and psychically feeds upon the dreams of mortal beings. This role seems to be Nightmare's natural place in the cosmic scheme of things, but he sometimes unduly torments specific mortals to amuse himself or further augment his power. He even harbors hopes of someday conquering the waking world and absorbing our reality into his own.

Powers: Nightmare affects mortals when they dream by drawing their psyches into his world, which he can manipulate and reshape at will. He has the power to trap psyches indefinitely but usually only torments souls for short periods of time lest he permanently deplete the psychic energies he feeds upon. He often rides a demonic horned steed and commands countless subservient nightmare creatures. There is a region of madness in the Nightmare World beyond his control, though, which he usually avoids. He is also vulnerable to attack by the Gulgol, a mystical creature that never sleeps. More recently, Nightmare assumed human form to reside on Earth. His limitations in this guise are unclear, though he is both more vulnerable and less powerful in human form than he is in his true demonic guise; however, he maintains contact with and control over his realm through the psychic energies he absorbs on Earth and has opened a nightmare-inducing night spot called Club Fear, whose thrill-seeking patrons unwittingly augment his power and strengthen his connection to and control over the Nightmare World.
Favorite Quote: "Fool! Your words are empty as the wind! Here in my world I am supreme! My will is the only will!" (Strange Tales 122. An exultant Nightmare gloats gleefully over his hated enemy Doctor Strange, whom he's literally holding in the palm of his hand.)
Heroes He Keeps Running Into: Doctor Strange, Earth's Sorcerer Supreme, is humanity's first line of defense against Nightmare. Other heroes who've encountered Nightmare include The Micronauts, Dazzler, Johnny Blaze, The Hulk, Spider-Man, Cloak & Dagger and the White Queen.

People Who Think He's Not So Bad: Nightmare's dream-servants are deferential to him, especially Doggerel, Nightmare's dedicated, slavishly loyal majordomo. As Edvard Haberdash, he has romanced a beautiful B-movie actress named Roxanne; she, though attracted to him, has come to realize he's a madman and sticks by him primarily for fear of what he might do to her and the world should she spurn him. Her boss, the eccentric horror film director Lucre, got along famously with "Edvard" until Nightmare decided he'd outlived his usefulness.
Most Despicable Act: Nightmare lives to torment, whether it's some anonymous dreamer or his own girlfriend (whom he's admitted he'll kill if he can't keep her). Beyond his nasty mind games themselves, though, one of the worst things he ever did was prod the Hulk into a super-savage state; the resultant rampage left a trail of violent deaths and mass destruction across the country.

by Sean McQuaid


Nightmarish Mug Shots


Dr. Strange (v. i)170
1968

Dr. Strange (v. ii) 52
1982

Ghost Rider 6
1991



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