Warning: This article contains spoilers for Doctor Doom #1, by Christopher Cantwell, Salvador Larroca, Guru-eFX and VC's Cory Petit, on sale now.
Eventually, every superhero in the Marvel Universe fights Doctor Doom. While Stan Lee and Jack Kirby might've introduced Victor Von Doom as a Fantastic Four villain, he's tangled with everyone from the X-Men and the Avengers to Luke Cage and Squirrel Girl. As one of Marvel's smartest scientists, most skilled magic-wielders and the ruler of Latveria, Doom presents a unique, complex threat that makes him the closest thing Marvel has to a nemesis for all of its heroes.
While Doom has flirted with heroism on multiple occasions, his lengthy list of villainous accomplishments makes it tough for Marvel's heroes to give him the benefit of the doubt. In Doctor Doom #1, that's why the Marvel Universe turns to Doom when a group of terrorists destroy a lunar lab and kill thousands while waving the Latverian flag.
Although he spoke out against the lab and its potentially dangerous black hole experiments, Doom maintains that he had nothing to do with the lab's destruction. Despite that, Doom quickly finds himself battling Agent Zero and Union Jack, two Marvel heroes who try to take him into custody.
While Union Jack is a British hero who's fought alongside Captain America, Agent Zero is the more obscure identity of the character who's better known as the '90s X-Men ally, Maverick.
As a veteran of the same Weapon X Program that gave Wolverine his adamantium skeleton, Agent Zero is one of Marvel's more noble mercenaries. When he debuted in Jim Lee and John Byrne's X-Men #5, he used his combat experience and his mutant ability to channel energy into kinetic blasts to help the X-Men save Wolverine from Omega Red.
After surviving a bout with the lethal Legacy Virus, Christoph Nord put aside his Maverick identity and was forced to rejoin the Weapon X Program as Agent Zero. With a totally concealing costume that covers him head-to-toe and an intentionally vague codename, the mystery of Zero's identity was one of the main sub-plots of Frank Tieri and Georges Jeanty's Weapon X.
Once Nord lost his powers as part of the Scarlet Witch's decimation of the mutant population, the ex-mutant faded into the background and became one of Marvel's many mercenaries.
While Maverick's frequent encounters with Wolverine made him prominent enough to star in his own solo series and appear in X-Men: The Animated Series and X-Men Origins: Wolverine, Doctor Doom marks Nord's first appearance in over half a decade.
Despite Agent Zero's considerable combat skills, Doom makes short work of him here. Nord's armor-piercing rounds are mostly useless against Doom, and Union Jack doesn't fare much better. Since the German mercenary and Union Jack were both presumably already in Europe, they were the first heroes on the scene in Latveria, but they were still hopelessly outclassed by Doom.
While Doom still surrenders after knocking both heroes unconscious at the end of the issues, Agent Zero's future is unclear. While Nord could continue to appear in Doctor Doom or in Wolverine's upcoming series, he could find himself swept into the realm of House of X, where Xavier has already discussed his intentions to repower all of Marvel's depowered mutants. Hopefully, Agent Zero will fare better in his next battle than he did against Doom, regardless of where he resurfaces next.