Once an operative of the elite intelligence agency known as S.H.I.E.L.D., Raniero "Blackie" Drago was eventually decommissioned for unknown reasons and later became a hired mercenary. None of his past was revealed except for the fact that he had a younger brother once, but apparently died during a car accident that eventually led him into becoming a S.H.I.E.L.D. operative.
Later, he was eventually been caught and confronted by Spider-Man and was imprisoned after he was secretly been hired by A.I.M. to assassinate a famous politician. During his time in prison, he was still kept updated on every news about superheroes and supervillains, including Spider-Man and their activities by the help of an A.I.M. agent and informant, who was pretending to be his lawyer and frequently visits him in jail.
The Second Vulture
During his time in prison, he eventually meet a fellow new fellow inmate named Adrian Toomes, who was the criminal known as the Vulture before getting arrested after Spider-Man defeated him. He told Adrian that he can tell him where his winged suit is secretly been kept, if he can get Blackie out of prison. Confused, Adrian questions how Adrian knew about the whereabouts of his suit. Blackie told him that A.I.M. had been keeping all his other inventions, (including the winged suit) since he was defeated by Spider-Man. Adrian agrees to his plan and tries to get him out of prison.
Their plan was successful until the prison siren has been accidentally triggered by the other inmates. He and Blackie were running to the exit and were about to finally escape prison until Blackie betrayed him by thanking him for the suit (in which Blackie uses it later as the new Vulture) before knocking him out. He successfully escaped while Adrian remained unconscious and was sent back to his cell. After his escape, A.I.M. finally gave Blackie the Vulture's wings, and thus he continued his career as a hired mercenary and became the second person to use the alias of the winged criminal known as the Vulture.
His skills and abilities as a mercenary against Spider-Man and other heroes even impressed the super-criminal group, the Sinister Seven, deciding to recruit Blackie to the team and even became his substitute to Adrian (who still hates Blackie even after he as well, escaped prison), at a much later time.
Hired by Hydra
Blackie continued his career as hired mercenary in New York and other U.S. states, until eventually he became unpopular within the crime community after his clients started tricking him, causing for several organizations to stop hiring him due to his unfamiliarity. Because of this, Drago became a lone wolf and started committing crimes all by himself, which surprisingly made him a rival and competitor to several criminals who are just as highly skilled as he was.
After being observed by the infamous organization Hydra since they discovered his hatred for S.H.I.E.L.D. and Nick Fury, they became highly impressed towards his strategies in his own way of crime, eradicating several ex-convicts for the past months, which led for Hydra to hire Drago for a very special mission, assassinate his former superior who is none other than Fury himself. Drago was interested at first, but he wasn't fully convinced after believing to never trust any client ever again, thinking that he just might get tricked over and over. Hydra promised their sincerity to Drago and offered him a fine amount of $5,000,000 and have his suit highly upgraded. Blackie agreed, and Hydra finally sent him the coordinates to Fury's current location.
Drago suited up his new wings and flew to Fury's current location, his private headquarters. He stealthily entered his way by pretending to masquerade as his old friend, Adrian Toomes and have himself captured in order to talk to Fury. Immediately after arriving near Fury's room, he got loose of his cuffs and activated his suit and killed most of its guards before getting to the room. Fury wasn't there and realized it was a trap triggering most of the room's traps but with Drago's skills, he evades all of them and at the same time he figured out Fury's real location. He broke in the secret trapdoor and tried to attack Nick but also evaded his claws and fangs. Fury tries to shoot Drago to keep him distracted but none of it worked on him, and Drago charges towards Fury, smashing him through the wall, weakening him. As Drago hold him, he was about to slice Fury's throat with his suit's fangs, but little did he know, Fury had already called Spider-Man from earlier.
A Familiar Face
Spider-Man arrives in the scene just in time and fought Drago to keep him away from ever attacking Fury. In the end, both the efforts of the Web-Slinger and Nick Fury had made them triumphant and defeated the Vulture. Drago was defeated after his suit was complete malfunctioned for flying and disabled his telecommunications with Hydra, although he used his final move on Fury and Spider-Man by using his last talon projectiles on them. He tries to shoot Fury and Spider-Man at the same time but Peter immediately dives towards Fury and pushes him out of the way, getting himself shot and stabbed repeatedly.
After witnessing about what he had done and discovered his secret identity, he was horrified and Drago tries to use his smoke grenade and escape the scene realizing that he had no choice but to get out of there, but Fury convinces him not to and help him move Peter to their emergency room. Blackie helped them after he was horrified after he attempted on killing Peter, whose looks and personalities reminded him of his younger deceased brother, though eventually he still vanished and escaped after putting Peter into the clinic room. Peter recovers from his wounds a week later under S.H.I.E.L.D.'s care to keep his secret identity remain secret while Drago had never appeared on any authorities' including, S.H.I.E.L.D. or even Hydra's supervision, leaving his whereabouts unknown for a while.
At some during the period a year before Ultimate War, Drago tried to get himself get back into a life of crime by infiltrating Horizon Labs, but went missing for almost a month after trying to steal some Chitauri technology and supplies for A.I.M., he was suddenly and mysteriously time-displaced and transported to a more modern day in an alternate dimension known as the Wastelands, where he had met Toomes once again, after stepping on a mysterious microchip. Drago tries to kill Toomes after thinking that he might attack him as well for betraying him back in the prison. Toomes told that he came in peace in his approach and convinced him to join him in his army of winged creatures from this dimension that became Toomes' followers.
Drago was convinced after Toomes lied about helping him get back home to the real world, and helped him build a tyrannical empire for almost 30 years, in dimension of the Wastelands. Blackie became Toomes' right-hand man helping him conquer every other different parts of the dimensions, stealing resources and using it to build their superweapons. All that remained unchanged, until the modern timeline's Fantastic Four and Spider-Man finally arrives at the Wastelands to find Toomes and rescue him, after vanishing for 3 months.
Leading a Rebellion
With all their best efforts after several fights, the five manages to convince Toomes to come with them back home after mentioning his daughter Valeria, leaving Drago to be extremely disappointed and believed that Toomes had easily gone soft. Due to this, Blackie decided to lead a rebellion against Toomes and the heroes by using the nano-tech devices implanted on the winged creatures' neck, in order to obey Drago's commands. Blackie and the entire legion charges towards the six of them and fought for a long while.
Drago manages to finally defeat Toomes after trying to disable the devices using a new device that he had recently invented against him. Drago almost intentionally destroyed the device but Spider-Man distracted him, causing for Mister Fantastic to held control of the device and finally disable the brainwashing method on the entire wake. After the wake had realized they were mind-controlled by their co-leader, they themselves decided to attack both their former commanders and decided to attack without someone unwillingly commanding them.
With their army composing of a hundred thousand creatures, even Drago himself was helpless and defenseless only managed to take out a quarter of the wake before he was eventually almost killed. Even after trying to kill the six of them, they still helped him get back up and defeat the creatures while Reed and Sue took their time trying to open the portal back to the real world after it unfortunately malfunctioned. They immediately and thankfully opened up the portal back and everyone went to Drago's timeline back at Horizon Labs. After a few conversations explaining everything about what just happened and before Drago could react or even got the chance attack them back, Sue used a device to wipe his memories of the future to keep the timeline in check and the others left the past so Drago can continue with his timeline from then on.
At some point later in time, Blackie was again detained at Manhattan Correctional Facility for some time after he was apprehended by for, before being freed by Norman Osborn and subsequently joining him and the other freed inmates to reform the Sinister Seven once again. Drago confidently rejected Osborn's offer at first, believing that he'll just get caught to whatever Osborn was secretly planning for the seven against Spider-Man. However, Osborn ridiculed Drago's thoughts on abandoning his own team another time, since Osborn had an important reason on why he reformed the team once more.
He and the escaped inmates re-approached the Tinkerer in providing them equipment, where Drago had received his own wings, since Toomes also had his own new pair. Upon teaming up as the Sinister Seven once again, the members questioned Osborn his true intentions and purpose on reforming the villainous alliance. Osborn smirked in response, then told his "disciples" that the entire reason of bringing back the team together was not necessarily because of the web-slinger, but because they were recruited into a much larger alliance known as the Movement, an alliance formed by several criminal & terrorist organizations, notably led by the Red Skull's organization Hydra and Mister Sinister's Brotherhood of Mutant Supremacy.
After explaining all the goals that Movement wanted to aim, the members were easily convinced to join the worldwide alliance of super-villains, expect for Drago, who still had a few doubts about the situation he's in. Drago then asked what would be the point of joining the Movement, or what would they have in exchange if they accomplished the main purpose of the villain's alliance. Osborn simply responded: "Anything you want, anything we all want" with a sinister smirk on his face. Understanding the point Osborn made, Drago agreed in terms of participating with the alliance.
Agents of Hydra
During the beginning events of Ultimate War, Drago and his Sinister Seven teammates, the original Vulture and the Shocker, had themselves volunteered to become temporary undercover agent for one of the Alliance's organizations, Hydra, although unbeknownst to Drago and Schultz, he wasn't aware that he was going to be part of a squad unit assigned to plant several explosives underground sewers across the many cities of New York State, in order to detonate when the time has finally come. With the cooperation of the entire unit, the implantation of explosives were quickly accomplished.
However, despite the mission being successful, Drago and Schultz started to have some second thoughts on why would they even do this, not just in participating with the Movement, but also on agreeing with Osborn in bringing the Seven back together. As a result, both villains eventually left Hydra after their mission and immediately returned to the Sinister Seven to update what the organization had been up to. Upon hearing their objectives, Osborn was unexpectedly glad, since he thought that Hydra didn't have the guts to cause wreck and havoc on the community, once more after its following endgames during the Hydra Uprising and the Nimrod Invasion.
A Change of Heart
Drago's guilt complex eventually had returned later on during the last known days of the Movement, and after realizing that the Alliance's strength in powers and numbers have started decreasing thanks to all the heroes' efforts against their forces, Drago decided to warn his most despised enemy, Spider-Man, about the explosives in order to prevent it from ever detonating for the sake of saving a huge portion of the population throughout the entirety of New York, and New York itself for that matter.
During the hero and the villain's meetup in the underground sewers of the city, Drago then proved his sincerity and honesty to Spider-Man in helping the heroes out prevent the city from having another catastrophic occurrence, and by that, he swore to have himself ultimately surrendered to S.H.I.E.L.D.'s authority once all of the events going on, will be finally over. The web-slinger then asked Drago what his reason for surrendering in order to save New York, and in response, Drago told him that he remembered his younger brother's death as a result of a bombing caused by a former Hydra loyalist. Coincidentally, that bombing has also occurred near their parents' workplace, killing Drago's parents as well in the process at the same time, back to when he and his brother young was still young, finally revealing what happened to Drago's brother and parents.
Drago also remembered his long-time ex-girlfriend, and remembered the last time he saw her, to which he actually saw her at Metro-General Hospital, nine months after their breakup, who was holding a newly-born baby girl. Drago was clearly happy with the fact that he became a father but also realized that he couldn't get any chance upon seeing his daughter due to his criminal career, causing for him to break down in tears. Drago then realized, that if he let the explosives destroy the streets of New York, the same tragedy would be repeated like what happened to his family, and realizing that his ex-girlfriend and his infant daughter will be a tragic casualty of this action, Drago would never forgive himself if he failed top save the only two people that he still loved to that very day.
After breaking down in tears once more, Spider-Man comforted the redeemed villain, and thanked him for changing his heart and mind and have decided to help the heroes save the day instead, believing that anyone, no matter how much wrong they've done in their whole life. can still change. After that very moment, Drago finally helped him disarm the explosives, which were all successful in the very end of it, saving New York from the wake of another impending destruction. Now seeing Drago as a new hero, Spider-Man honored Drago for what he did, before the redeemed villain told him to go as the Sinister was coming to confront him for his actions. Before escaping the sewers, Drago then told Spider-Man to at least visit his ex-girlfriend and daughter at their apartment in Manhattan and give them a letter that he wrote to his family. As he gave him the letter to him, Spider-Man nodded in response, before swinging away from the area. From that point on, Drago never had any other regrets in his entire life.
Death of a Hero
Upon hearing about Drago's actions, The Sinister Seven and Green Goblin confronts Drago about him helping Spider-Man disarm and deactivate all the highly-armed explosives planted in several buildings and sewers across New York, saying that he was tricked into helping Spider-Man. Drago keeps on siding with Spider-Man and the heroes during their argument, with Drago now saying that Osborn was in fact a true madman. This eventually made Osborn lash out in extreme rage, transforming into the his ultimate form and attacked Drago, leading the two engage into a fight that lasted very shortly, resulting in Drago's ultimate defeat.
Osborn sadly killed Drago in the most brutal way possible, beating him to death while burning him in the process. He was later avenged by his old S.H.I.E.L.D. supervisor and director, Nick Fury after he repeatedly shoots Norman with a rifle while he was still in human form, seemingly killing the villain (not until his later return when he was revealed to have survived). Known for a long time by many as a ruthless villain and mercenary, Raniero still was remembered to have died a hero by the ones who have witness his final redemption. His burned and disfigured body was later found in the sewers, where he died and was taken by S.H.I.E.L.D. for unknown reasons.
Powers and Abilities
- Temporary/Limited Levitation
|Power Grid |
- S.H.I.E.L.D. Training: Blackie Drago's S.H.I.E.L.D. training presumably included unarmed combat, marksmanship and intelligence techniques. He is a capable unarmed combatant, specializing in the aerial combat enabled by his Vulture suit.
- Expert Manipulator
- Original Flight Exo-Suit (Modified; Originally by Adrian Toomes) (formerly; destroyed)
- Electromagnetic Wing Harness (Original Version) (formerly; destroyed)
- Wing Blades
- Electromagnetic Helmet (Original Version) (formerly; destroyed)
- Neural Transmitter
- Electromagnetic Gauntlets (Original Version) (formerly; destroyed)
- Razor-Sharp Blades
- Razor-Sharp Blades
- Electromagnetic Wing Harness (Original Version) (formerly; destroyed)
- Similarly to the current Chitauri Tech Wings upgraded by Adrian Toomes, It has the same features, except that it is less advanced than Toomes' newer wings. Blackie also carries some form of plasma pistol and several grenades of unknown types. He can slash his opponents using claws on his gloves and spikes on his gauntlets, although it is less advanced compared to Toomes' upgraded suit.
- No special notes.
- ↑ Modern Comics: Civil War Vol 1 5
- Drago's death is very similar death to that of the Ultimate Doctor Octopus.
- Appearances of Raniero Drago (Earth-61615)
- Character Gallery: Raniero Drago (Earth-61615)
- Quotations by Raniero Drago (Earth-61615)
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