|Real Name||Jeremiah Strauss|
|Aliases||The Projectionist, Mr. Nobody, the Great Ape, Nemo|
|Wild Card Traits||Metamorphosis|
|Citizenship||Citizen of the United States|
|Occupation||Private investigator, entertainer|
|Affiliations||Ackroyd Creighton Agency|
|First Appearance||Aces High|
|Previous Mention||Wild Cards|
Jeremiah "Jerry" Strauss is a shapeshifting ace and partner to Jay Ackroyd at the Ackroyd Creighton Agency. He has the ability to replicate the form of any living being he has seen, including fictional characters from movies.
Jerry Strauss was born to wealthy parents on Staten Island, New York. He developed a fascination with movies at an early age and even had his own screening room in his parents' mansion. When his wild card ability surfaced he found that he could mimic any on-screen personality and turned this trick into a stage act. Calling himself the Projectionist, Strauss would mimic the physical aspects of his targets perfectly, but was a poor impersonator.After failing in his attempt at a stage career, Strauss suffered a nervous breakdown in 1965. He turned himself into one of his favourite screen personalities and became a 45ft tall ape. He absorbed the mass he needed for this form by drawing huge amounts of electricity from the surrounding area, which led to the great New York City blackout of 1965.
Strauss was trapped in his ape body for over two decades. Housed in the Central Park Zoo he would periodically escape. Slipping into a fixed pattern he would break out of his cage, grab the nearest blonde, and climb to the top of the Empire State Building. Each time he would be subdued and taken back to the zoo.
In 1987 he was transported to Sri Lanka to appear in the title role of a movie called, King Pongo. True to form, he escaped, snatched up his pretty co-star and headed into the jungle. Strauss was rescued when J.C. Jayewardene realised that there was a man trapped within the body of the ape, and Dr. Tachyon assisted in returning him to human form. Strauss returned to New York, a man 22 years out of date.
Due to Jerry's arrested aging while trapped as the Great Ape, he appeared physically younger than his little brother. One of the senior partners at the Latham-Strauss lawfirm, Jerry's brother was murdered by jumpers on the orders of the firm's other senior partner, "Loophole" Latham. Investigating his brother's death, Jerry's powers came in very handy, but he quickly discovered he was in over his head. Latham had extensive ties to the New York underworld, including gangs in Jokertown, the Shadow Fist criminal organization, and joker revolutionaries on the Rox. Further Latham was constantly accompanied by his bodyguard, the jumper Zelda. Enlisting the help of fellow ace and former call-girl Veronica, Strauss managed to succesfully kill Latham, an unintended side benefit being no more jumpers could be created. Unfortunately, enough jumpers already existed and their crime spree had gone on long enough to foment a massive crisis for the state of New York and the government of the United States.
He became caught up in the Rox War while impersonating the then missing Jay "Popinjay" Ackroyd. Carnifex had been sent by George G. Battle to Ackroyd's office, and believing Strauss to be Ackroyd, and made him an offer he couldn't refuse. Strauss joined Battle's insertion team and was uncovered when he revealed that he could not teleport his injured teammate Black Shadow. To make himself useful to the team, he shapeshifted into the movie version of Frankenstein's Monster.
Wild Card Traits Edit
Jerry Strauss has the ability to alter his shape and appearance to resemble anyone that he has previous seen and can remember well. Most frequently he uses on screen personalities to be his templates, but is also able to mimic the forms of people he has seen. The impersonations are not always precise replicas - small differences can be spotted by acquaintances of the copied person.
Jerry is also able to extend his shapeshifting well beyond strictly human copies. He has been able to extend bone beyond his fingers to form claw-like extremities and has even been able to take on additional mass to copy the form of a giant ape. When shapeshifting to a form with a larger mass, he subconsciously draws energy from nearby sources and converts it to the required mass.
One significant limitation to Strauss's power is the longer he maintains a nonhuman form the harder it becomes for him to remember his humanity and revert back to normal. This happens most often when assuming the identity of various "monsters." In addition, Strauss cannot alter his own damaged tissue. In theory, if he were hurt badly enough, Strauss would not be able to change shape.
Known Impersonations Edit
- Jay Ackroyd
- Humphrey Bogart
- Frankenstein's Monster
- The Great Ape
- "Loophole" Latham
- The Wolfman
Jerry Strauss routinely alters his appearance to suit his needs, often imitating the visage of a classic film character. In his default form, Strauss is a caucasian male with brown hair and passably attractive, if somewhat plain, features.
Jerry Strauss is an avid fan of movies, and had an encyclopaedic knowledge of classic film predating his transformation into the Great Ape in 1965. His obsession with movies has left him with a feeble link to reality and at times he is noticeably lacking in common sense. His two decade 'exile' as the Great Ape has also left him with an unfortunate gap in his knowledge of history and events during that period.
- Strauss privately calls himself "Mr. Nobody". Ironically nobody else is aware of this nickname.
- Strauss was jumped during an early attempt to kill Latham, but was quickly returned to his own body when the jumper panicked, unable to control Strauss's ace ability.