A hideous vampire who could put Dracula to shame for sheer vileness, this barely human, Haitian Joker is a little over 2 feet tall, hairless, chinless, skeletally thin with underdeveloped legs and a round open mouth containing a single large tooth. With no respiratory system of his own, Malice can only survive by extracting the nutrients and oxygen from the blood of a human host. And to ensure he'll never be short of willing slaves, he's also able to secrete a highly addictive chemical from his saliva glands that goes straight to the pleasure centres of the host's brain.
With the telepathic link that he's able to create with each of his mounts, Malice can also control their actions while he's feeding on them in order to satisfy his never ending quest to experience every sensation, whether it be pleasurable or painful. The only problem is, when he gets tired of them the former host is left an empty husk with little or no interest in the life he or she had before Malice came along. This is one creature that really should have been strangled at birth. Except he would've probably got off on that, too.
Positive attributes - Are you kidding?
Negative character traits - Sadist, hedonist, considers all other beings to be potential mounts, basically evil to the core.
Main appearances - Aces Abroad, Down and Dirty, Dead Man's Hand.
Supporting appearances - That would be telling.
In a nutshell - Parasite.
Random quote - 'We must always do whatever is in our best interests.'
TOPPER (Melissa Blackwood)
Lost something valuable? Talk to Topper, a conjurer Ace with a talent every kid dreams of possessing - whatever she needs, she just puts her hand into her top hat and out it comes. Don't ask how she does it, she probably couldn't tell you if she wanted to. All she knows is, she was in the middle of her high school talent show act when all of a sudden her Wild Card turned and she was pulling more than rabbits out of her hat.
Originally a protégée of Cyclone's, Melissa worked for the Justice Department until she couldn't stand it any longer, and has since found her niche in the private sector as an operative in Jay Ackroyd's detective agency. Petite, pretty, with a wealth of curly red hair, and often dressed in camera-friendly bow tie and tails, short shorts and fishnet stockings - and of course the requisite top hat. She's probably the last person Jay would call on for a 'shadow' job, but she's a whiz when it comes to missing pets.
Positive attributes - Trustworthy, honest, sense of humour.
Negative character traits - None worth mentioning.
Main appearances - Deuces Down.
Supporting appearances - Black Trump.
In a nutshell - Hat trick.
Random quote - 'I left my wallet in my other hat.'
TRAVNICEK, DR. MAXIM
Hard to believe anyone as misanthropic as Dr. Travnicek could ever have created as human a character as Modular Man, but that's exactly what he did. Of East European descent, Travnicek originally made a fairly decent living as an inventor thanks to his Wild Card enhanced genius in cybernetics. He was a tall, thin, distinguished looking man before an encounter with 'Typhoid Croyd' changed his physical form into something that more accurately reflects his inner self.
He's now a bizarre-looking Joker with blue skin, writhing cilia instead of toes and fingers, enhanced agility, and a weird cluster of sensory organs around his neck that enable him to perceive things in a manner not entirely human. Unfortunately, his genius didn't carry over when he changed - a fact which he refuses to accept and which causes Modular Man considerable mental stress. Not that he cares much - he's far too busy getting his kicks from his new sensory equipment, making Mod Man's life as miserable as possible, and eating insects.
Positive attributes - Created Modular Man.
Negative character traits - Sociopath, petty, vindictive, arrogant, obnoxious, totally self-centred, no social skills, hedonist.
Main appearances - Aces High, Down and Dirty, Dealer's Choice.
Supporting appearances - Jokers Wild.
In a nutshell - Doctor's strange.
Random quote - 'I am a genius, and I intend to stay one.'
TURTLE, THE GREAT AND POWERFUL (Thomas Tudbury)
Talk about setting yourself up for a fall. For most people, one adjective would be more than enough. Two could be construed as overplaying your hand a little. But since he is the strongest telekinesist on Earth with almost limitless power, we'll forgive him. Although his Ace manifested itself early on in his childhood, it wasn't until the death of his hero, John F. Kennedy, that he decided to put his talents to public use. With the help of his childhood friend, Joey, he built a protective shell out of an old VW Beetle and some surplus battleship armour left over from his friend's junkyard, and has been New York's most famous - and most publicity-shy - vigilante ever since.
Out of character, Tom's your average man on the street - plain-looking, pudgy, glasses, and a massive inferiority complex. In character, he's every kid's hero, patrolling the skies in his shell powered solely through his telekinesis, incapacitating evildoers and rescuing the innocent. Over the years, the Turtle's honed his multitasking powers to such a point that he finds little difficulty in keeping himself aloft and disarming bad guys at he same time. Unfortunately, he's also hidden himself away in his protective skin for so long that he's now almost powerless once he steps outside it. Still, you'll think twice before cutting up a Beetle again.
Positive attributes - Honest, trustworthy, resourceful, generally does the right thing, refuses to disclose whether he's an Ace or a Joker.
Negative character traits - Self-pitying, romantic, insecure, generally his own worst enemy.
Main appearances - Wild Cards, Aces High, Down and Dirty, Dealer's Choice.
Supporting appearances - Jokers Wild, Ace In The Hole, Jokertown Shuffle, Double Solitaire, Marked Cards, Deuces Down.
In a nutshell - Hide and seek.
Random quote - 'Only fools want to be a hero.'