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Firestorm by ChrisCross
Personal Data
Alter Ego:  Jason Thomas Rusch
Occupation:  Student
Marital Status:  Single
Known Relatives:  Alvin Rusch (father)
Group Affiliation:  None
Base of Operations:  Detroit, Michigan
First Appearance:  Firestorm, The Nuclear Man, Vol. 3, #1 (May, 2004)
Height: 
Weight: 
Eyes:  (Firestorm) White (no pupils); (Rusch) Brown
Hair:  (Firestorm) Inapplicable (flaming corona); (Rusch) Black
 
History
Firestorm was originally the union of two men, high school athlete Ronnie Raymond and nuclear physicist Martin Stein. Caught at the heart of a nuclear reaction, the duo was transformed into a single being, one who could fly, generate bursts of fiery energy and, most notably, change (or transmute) the form of items by altering them at the molecular level. Stein, by virtue of having been unconscious at the moment of fusion, served as a mental advisor to Firestorm’s dominant personality, the fun-loving, exuberant Raymond (FIRESTORM # 1).

When separated, Stein had no conscious memory of his activities as Firestorm. Wracked with guilt over the professor’s descent into alcoholism, Ronnie retired their joint alter ego. A crisis prompted Firestorm’s return and Superman persuaded the young hero to stick around (DC COMICS PRESENTS # 17), even sponsoring him for membership in the Justice League of America (JUSTICE LEAGUE OF AMERICA # 179). Determined to be more honest with his partner, Ron told everything to Professor Stein, relieving him of the burden of his mysterious blackouts Art by George Perez(THE FLASH # 289 & 290). For a time, Firestorm was one of New York City’s (and later -- after Ron went to college -- Pittsburgh’s) most well-regarded super-heroes, Professor Stein’s insights tempering Ron’s youthful excesses in the role.

Diagnosed with an inoperable brain tumor, Martin convinced Ron that Firestorm should go out with a bang by demanding total nuclear disarmament (FURY OF FIRESTORM # 62, 63, & 64). Caught at ground zero of a nuclear explosion with his Russian counterpart Pozhar (Mikhail Arkadin), Firestorm found his matrix changed to Arkadin and Ron Raymond though neither man controlled their new alter ego (FIRESTORM ANNUAL # 5). Professor Stein (no longer part of the equation though he’d unconsciously shaped the new Firestorm) was eventually located in a Nevada mental institution. Recovering from amnesia, his brain tumor was gone (FIRESTORM, THE NUCLEAR MAN # 75).

The second incarnation of Firestorm was nearly destroyed when a Russian clone of the Nuclear Man absorbed his powers (FIRESTORM, THE NUCLEAR MAN # 83). In order to stop the threat of the clone Svarozhich, Raymond and Arkadin agreed to merge with the creature and create a third version of Firestorm. No longer capable of reverting back to their human forms, Ron and Mikhail effectively sacrificed their individual personalities (FIRESTORM, THE NUCLEAR MAN # 85).

In the process, it was revealed that Firestorm was meant to be Earth’s fire elemental. Martin Stein had originally been fated for that role only to have the matrix corrupted by the unexpected presence of Ron Raymond (# 85). The disclosure prompted a radical suggestion from the professor when Earth's sun was threatened by the entity known as Brimstone. At Stein's request, a desperate experiment was conducted that recreated the Firestorm entity with himself in sole command. Raymond and Arkadin resumed their normal lives while the fourth variation of Firestorm explored the alien universe where the battle with Brimstone had trapped him (FIRESTORM # 100).

During a crisis, Martin and Ron were briefly united, with Raymond serving as a conduit by which Stein's Firestorm could reach Earth (WAR OF THE GODS # 1, 2, & 4).

Months later, Ron was diagnosed with leukemia and suddenly burst into flames, manifesting himself in his original Firestorm persona (EXTREME JUSTICE # 3 & 4). Simultaneously, Martin Stein's incarnation (Firestorm IV) returned to ask Raymond to reunite with him so that he could retain a sense of wonder at the cosmos. Raymond declined the offer. Before returning to outer space, a sympathetic Stein cured his former partner of his cancer while allowing him to retain his Firestorm powers (EXTREME JUSTICE # 5). Stein’s aspect still struggles to hang onto his humanity in space and crossed paths with Ron’s incarnation most recently in GREEN LANTERN/FIRESTORM # 1.

Firestorm (Version 5.0) immediately joined Justice League West (EXTREME JUSTICE # 5) and remained with the group until shortly after the Sun-Eater crisis (THE FINAL NIGHT # 1 & 3). In between, Ron Raymond gained a fair amount of fame as a male model (EXTREME JUSTICE # 8) and was forced to confront his alcoholism (SHOWCASE ‘96 # 6 & 7), not always successfully (JLA # 69).

Ron’s college studies fell by the wayside after his fusion with Mikhail Arkadin but he’s recently enrolled at Ivy University under Professor Ray Palmer, otherwise known as the Atom (GREEN LANTERN: CIRCLE OF FIRE # 1), and joined in many classes by Isaiah “Joto” Crockett, late of the Teen Titans (TITANS SECRET FILES # 2). JLA # 69 implied that Ron was now at "Eastern State University".

Firestorm has had difficulty using his transmutation powers lately (starting in DC ONE MILLION # 2), placing the blame on Professor Stein’s absence (SECRET FILES & ORIGINS GUIDE TO THE DC UNIVERSE 2000) and relying on heroes like Oracle (JLA # 40), the Atom (DAY OF JUDGMENT # 1, 2, 3, 4, & 5) and even a robotic Green Lantern (GREEN LANTERN/FIRESTORM # 1) to do his thinking for him. There’s no definitive evidence to suggest that Firestorm actually needs a conscious knowledge of chemical equations to use his powers and this may simply be a matter of his insecurities overwhelming him.

A team player since his days of dribbling the basketball at Bradley High, Firestorm was also part of an independently-conceived revival of Justice League Europe but saw that group decimated around him (STARMAN [second series] # 38). He’s frequently called into action with the Justice League Reserves (JLA # 27 and others), most recently joining the core team in the wake of the first string’s disappearance (JLA # 69).   In addition to remaining active with the League, Firestorm once joined The Power Company (POWER COMPANY #11) as an associate in order to earn a steady paycheck.  He has since quit The Power Company.

A big thanks to John "Mikishawm" Wells for this Firestorm write-up.  You can check out more of John's work at the Fanzing Archives or on the DC Comics Message Boards.

 
Powers & Weapons
Firestorm has the ability to see the atomic structure of any object and rearrange the molecular structure of the objects, transmuting them into an object of his choosing.  This ability is limited to his knowledge of the chemical structure of the object he wishes to create.  He is limited to transforming only inorganic objects due to some undefined mental block.  If he attempts to change an organic object, he experiences an energy feedback which temporarily incapacitates him.  Firestorm can also alter the density of objects, including himself.  In addition, he can project intense heat and flame, project nuclear energy bolts, fly at great speed, and absorb radiation and explosive force harmlessly into himself.
 
Raphael Kayanan & Dick Giordano cover from The Fury of Firestom, The Nuclear Man Vol. 2 Annual #3Firestorm I
Alter Ego:  Ronald (Ronnie) Raymond and Professor Martin Stein
Occupation:  (Raymond) College Student; (Stein) Physics Professor at Vandemeer University, former designer of Hudson Nuclear Facility, former employee of Concordance Research Corporation
Marital Status:  (Raymond) Single; (Stein) Divorced
Known Relatives:  (Raymond) Edward Raymond (originally Rockwell, father), Elaine Rockwell (mother, deceased), Felicity Smoak Raymond (stepmother), Richard "Captain X" Dare (grandfather, deceased); (Stein) Clarissa Clemens (ex-wife)
Group Affiliation:  Justice League of America
Base of Operations:  Pittsburgh, PA, formerly New York, NY
Height:  (Firestorm) 6'2"; (Raymond) 6'1"; (Stein) 5'10"
Weight:  (Firestorm) 202 lbs.; (Raymond) 179 lbs.; (Stein) 161 lbs.
Eyes:  (Firestorm) White (no pupils); (Raymond) Blue; (Stein) Brown
Hair:  (Firestorm) Inapplicable; (Raymond) Brown; (Stein) Gray
Firestorm II
Alter Ego:  Ronald (Ronnie) Raymond and Mikhail Denisovich Arkadin
Occupation:  (Raymond) College Student; (Arkadin) former Nuclear Technician
Marital Status:  (Raymond) Single; (Arkadin) Married
Known Relatives:  (Raymond) Edward Raymond (originally Rockwell, father), Elaine Rockwell (mother, deceased), Felicity Smoak Raymond (stepmother), Richard "Captain X" Dare (grandfather, deceased); (Arkadin) Nina (wife), Irena, Sofia (daughters), Alexander, Dmitri (brothers), Sylvia (sister-in-law), Serafina (niece)
Group Affiliation:  Justice League of America
Base of Operations:  (Raymond) Pittsburgh, PA and New York, NY; (Arkadin) Moscow, Russia
Height:  (Firestorm) 6'6"; (Raymond) 6'1"; (Arkadin) 6'
Weight:  (Firestorm) 202 lbs.; (Raymond) 179 lbs.; (Arkadin) 180 lbs.
Eyes:  (Firestorm) White (no pupils); (Raymond) Blue; (Arkadin) Gray
Hair:  (Firestorm) Inapplicable; (Raymond) Brown; (Arkadin) Brown
Firestorm III
Alter Ego:  Ronald (Ronnie) Raymond, Mikhail Denisovich Arkadin, and Svarozhich
Occupation:  (Raymond) College Student; (Arkadin) former Nuclear Technician; (Svarozhich) None
Marital Status:  (Raymond) Single; (Arkadin) Married; (Svarozhich) Single
Known Relatives:  (Raymond) Edward Raymond (originally Rockwell, father), Elaine Rockwell (mother, deceased), Felicity Smoak Raymond (stepmother), Richard "Captain X" Dare (grandfather, deceased); (Arkadin) Nina (wife), Irena, Sofia (daughters), Alexander, Dmitri (brothers), Sylvia (sister-in-law), Serafina (niece); (Svarozhich) None
Group Affiliation:  None
Base of Operations:  (Raymond) Pittsburgh, PA and New York, NY; (Arkadin) Moscow, Russia
Height:  (Firestorm) 6'2"; (Raymond) 6'1"; (Arkadin) 6'; (Svarozhich) 6'6"
Weight:  (Firestorm) 202 lbs.; (Raymond) 179 lbs.; (Arkadin) 180 lbs.; (Svarozhich) 202 lbs.
Eyes:  (Firestorm) White (no pupils); (Raymond) Blue; (Arkadin) Gray; (Svarozhich) White (no pupils)
Hair:  (Firestorm) Inapplicable; (Raymond) Brown; (Arkadin) Brown; (Svarozhich) Inapplicable
Firestorm IV, The Fire Elemental
Alter Ego:  Martin Stein
Occupation:  Nuclear Physicist and Explorer
Marital Status:  Divorced
Known Relatives:  Clarissa Clemens (ex-wife)
Group Affiliation:  None
Base of Operations:  Outer Space; Formerly Pittsburgh, PA and New York, NY
Height:  (Firestorm) 6'2"; (Stein) 5'10"
Weight:  (Firestorm) 202 lbs.; (Stein) 165 lbs.
Eyes:  (Firestorm) White with Red Flames; (Stein) Brown
Hair:  (Firestorm) Inapplicable; (Stein) Gray
Firestorm V
Alter Ego:  Ronald (Ronnie) Raymond
Occupation:  College Student
Marital Status:  Single
Known Relatives:  Edward Raymond (originally Rockwell, father), Elaine Rockwell (mother, deceased), Felicity Smoak Raymond (stepmother), Richard Dare (natural grandfather, deceased), Patricia Rockwell (grandmother, deceased), Ted Rockwell (grandfather, deceased)
Group Affiliation:  Justice League of America, former employee of The Power Company
Base of Operations:  Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania and Ivy Town
Height:  6'1"
Weight:  179 lbs.
Eyes:  (Firestorm) White (no pupils); (Raymond) Blue
Hair:  (Firestorm) Inapplicable (flaming corona); (Raymond) Brown