Black Air

Real Name: Black Air.
AKA: Possibly Black Air Ops. In any case, it is part of the British Intelligence Agency.
First Appearance: Excalibur 86.
What's Their Problem? Black Air is the British Intelligence agency that replaced W.H.O. (Wierd Happenings Organization), Britain's old Paranormal Investigation agency. After taking over, they developed a take-nothin'-from-nobody and take- everyone-else-out attitude. Their main goal was to take over the world using the power of a demon in conjunction with the London Hellfire Club; they also planned to take over Europe during the Days of Future Past X-storyline.
Abilities: Black Air possessed highly advanced technology, immunity to all laws, and the resources to do just about anything. Instead of using small armies or guerilla warfare like the major powers, Black Air simply maintained two mutant field operatives: Pete Wisdom and Scratch. To remedy any problems that might become threats, they sent one of them in and killed all those who might bother them (quite gruesomely, I might add).
Weapons: Black Air had access to advanced weaponry similar to the kind HYDRA routinely employed (flying cars, lasers, biological weapons, et cetra). Other weapons were biological in nature, derived from the alien race The Uncreated. Oh, one more thing -- they teamed up with the London Hellfire Club to harness a the power of a demon. (Demons count as weapons, right?)
Favorite Quote: "I think it's important to have your reason for execution all out in the open. Don't you?" (From the wimpy Black Air agent Scratch, who had his rumped kicked by Pete Wisdom later that very same issue).
Heroes They Keeps Running Into: Even though Black Air's long fingers were felt all over the world, they almost exclusively dealt with Excalibur.
People Who Think They're Not So Bad: Black Air was in cahoots with the London branch of the Hellfire Club, various bribed parliament members, and even the Sentinels from the Days of Futures Past.
Most Despicable Act: Black Air has perpetrated so many horrible deeds it's hard to decide on an absolute worst one. That being said, it's a toss-up between their pact with the Sentinels in the future storyline (which resulted in a dead earth), the gruesome treatment of Douglock (go read it already -- Excalibur 94!!!), or the demon/Hellfire Club dealings (several hundred people who were unlucky enough to be in London at the time were killed).
Writer's Note: If possible, find and read all of the Black Air Excalibur issues (found throughout issues 84-103 -- they're very inexpensive, so you owe it to yourself to read them). Personally, I consider the whole Black Air era of Excalibur to be a cheesy X-Files rip-off -- but, heck, check your local bargin bins anyway. For $.25 a pop, how can you go wrong? -- editor Jeanne

by Ryan Lynch

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