Despero is an alien from the planet Kalanor, and in addition to a genius intellect possesses a third eye on his forehead capable of mind control, illusions, telekinesis, and telepathy. Despero is also empowered by the “Flame of Py’tar”, a mystical source of power that grants him massive superhuman strength, durability, and the ability to alter his mass (from human-sized to massive). He has repeatedly been shown to be more powerful than Superman and Captain Marvel.


Despero first appears when in pursuit of two rebels from the planet Kalanor, which he rules as a tyrant. They are attempting to create a weapon to defeat him. The rebels make contact with the Justice League of America due to the Flash, with member Flash accepting Despero’s challenge after he places the rest of the group in a hypnotic trance, but the Flash is defeated in a game similar to chess due to Despero cheating using his third eye’s mental powers, and along with the rest of the JLA sent to different worlds. Despero found out about this by reading the mind of one of the rebels he had tracked down and teleported, though her father and Flash were protected by the dimensional traveller’s ‘blue glow’. However, the JLA are able to escape all the dangers on the worlds and return to Earth using a dimensional traveler one of Despero’s henchmen possesses after the Flash defeats him. Despero has found the rebel and plans to use their energy-absorbing weapon they hoped to use to disable his weapons to conquer Earth, but Snapper Carr uses it to weaken the villain after pretending he has been hypnotized, though the ‘blue glow’ protected him. Despero is then imprisoned and Kalanor is freed.

The villain has his third eye surgically removed, making him lose his hypnotic powers. Eventually it grows back, he fakes his death in an explosion at a lab and in revenge ages half of the Justice League and banishes the remainder to three other worlds, where he has caused Reptile, Insect, and Marine life to become intelligent, planning to conquer the Worlds later. When Despero attempts to deceive Wonder Woman by disguising himself as an aged Superman, she overpowers the villain with her Lasso of Truth, realizing the energy should not have affected Superman, and forces him to undo his actions. Despero is thwarted again when the Justice League intervene in his intergalactic plans of conquest, and save member the Martian Manhunter who is being forced to play in a life and death chess match.

Despero eventually returns with even greater abilities, and completely destroys the Justice League Satellite. After defeating the Justice League, Despero reshapes Gotham City to suit his purposes. Taunted by Batman, Despero is eventually distracted, allowing fellow member Vibe to extinguish the “Flame of Py’tar”, the source of Despero’s power. The villain’s form is immediately dispelled and reality restores itself.

Having allied himself with a race that destroys species unworthy of survival, Despero attempts to convince them to destroy Earth by using an alien substance known as the ‘Blackrock’ to influence Earth’s alien superhumans- Martian Manhunter, Supergirl, Starfire, etc.- to turn against humanity by playing on their occasional feelings of isolation. However, his efforts are foiled when Batman exposes himself to the blackrock while under attack by Superman, the sight of his friend’s contamination helping Superman to recognise what is happening to him, allowing Superman to confront the aliens directly and convince them that Despero deceived them. Despero returned in his original human form when plucked from the timestream by Mister Mind, and is convinced to join a group called “The Time Stealers”. The villains successfully create an alternate universe that differs significantly from the original. Hero Booster Gold and several allies eventually undo the change and restore the original universe.


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