Real Name: Erik Josten AKA: Power Man. Smuggler. Atlas First Appearance: Avengers 21 as Power Man; Spectacular Spider-Man 49 as Smuggler; Iron Man Annual 7 as Goliath; Incredible Hulk 449 as Atlas What's His Problem? As his original alias hints, Erik Josten has a thing for power. The immortal Enchantress used Baron Zemo's machines to turn him into the super-strong Power Man. Josten conspired against the Avengers with her only to be abandoned by the Enchantress when the going got tough.
None the wiser for his experience, Josten spent the ensuing years in pursuit of criminal gain, usually in the employ of various criminal masterminds. One such mastermind, Count Nefaria, tricked Josten into letting Nefaria drain away much of his power for Nefaria's own use. He continued his criminal career in more covert fashion as the Smuggler before becoming the powerful (and really tall) Goliath.
Despite his newfound might, the Avengers and other heroes have defeated Josten time and again. Perhaps tiring of this, Josten assumed the new alias of Atlas and joined several other disguised super-criminals in forming the super-heroic Thunderbolts team, and became one of a splinter group trying to become real super-heroes. Powers: Goliath, like the late Avengers member Wonder Man, has phenomenal superhuman strength and durability thanks to Baron Zemo's ionic ray process. By growing to giant size Josten augments his strength even further. He is almost unbeatable on a physical level. His physical size is potentially limitless, but he risks mental or physical collapse if he grows beyond sixty feet, and has gotten stuck a few times at that height.
Like Wonder Man, Goliath may also have other latent superhuman powers that will gradually surface over time. Favorite Quote: "I've been used all my life. Power Man was always somebody's flunky! But I'm not Power Man anymore. I'm Goliath. And where Goliath walks -- he walks alone!" (Iron Man Annual 7). Funny statement from someone who claims to be a chain of command guy in Thunderbolts! editor these-things-bother-me Jeanne. Heroes He Keeps Running Into: Josten has been battling the Avengers for years, both alone and as a member of Mandarin's Minions, the Lethal Legion and the Masters of Evil. Heroes who've given Goliath the slingshot treatment include Captain America, Spider-Man, Iron Man, Wonder Man, Hawkeye and Mockingbird. People Who Think He's Not So Bad: The Enchantress thought Josten was kinda cute, though not cute enough to risk her neck over. Josten's also had a few recurring criminal buddies, like fellow Lethal Legion alumni Swordsman and Man-Ape, and is a team player by inclination despite his occasional delusions of grandeur. The current Baron Zemo calls him by his first name, a definate sign of favoritism. As one of the more affable Thunderbolts, Josten has earned the respect of his teammates and the admiration of the masses, most notably New York City's mayoral assistant Dallas Riordan, with whom he's begun a romance as Atlas. Most Despicable Act: Goliath was among the Masters of Evil who invaded and occupied Avengers Mansion; during the occupation, he and several other Masters beat Hercules nearly to death. Y'know, stuff like this is why I have trouble buying the idea of a more "affable" Goliath -- editor Jeanne