Torque (DC Comics)
Nightwing #1 (Oct. 1996)
Nightwing #27 (Jan. 1999)
|Alter ego||Dudley Soames|
Blüdhaven Police Department|
skilled marksman with the Thompson .45 machine gun;
wears specialized glasses with rear-view mirrors.
Fictional character biography
Inspector Dudley "Deadly" Soames was the dirtiest man working in the corrupted Blüdhaven Police Department. He first met Nightwing when he was ordered by Delmore Redhorn, the Police Chief, to execute the young vigilante. Soames, however, betrayed Redhorn and allowed Nightwing to live, with the intention to pit various factions in Blüdhaven against one another. He played both sides of the legal fence: he fed information on Blockbuster's criminal dealings to Nightwing, served Blockbuster as a mob lieutenant, and oversaw many of the criminal activities of Chief Redhorn's corrupt tenure with the police.
After Soames' scheme to use Scarecrow against Nightwing failed disastrously, Blockbuster grew weary of his underling, and attempted to have him killed. Soames responded with surprising cunning, and ultimately tried to take Blockbuster's invalid mother hostage as part of a last bid for power. Nightwing attempted to intervene, but was forced to save innocent bystanders as Blockbuster twisted the dirty cop's head 180 degrees, leaving Soames for dead.
However, Soames survived by sheer luck, as his windpipe remained undamaged long enough for him to be moved to life support. Although his neck was permanently twisted, thanks to a breakthrough medical technique, sophisticated micro-surgery was able to reattach his nerve endings so that he could move again. With control of his body restored but informed that it would be impossible to turn his head back the right way around, Soames spent some time retraining himself to move normally, "seeing through the back of his head" with the use of glasses with a built-in array of mirrors. Still disgusted at his new condition despite the doctor's assurances that everything that could be done had been done, Soames brutally killed the doctor that had saved his life, morbidly renamed himself Torque, and (gaining the support of Intergang) started a new gang war for the control of Blüdhaven, revenge against Blockbuster, Nightwing, and the city he now felt he owned.
Torque fights Nightwing and the vigilante "Nite-Wing" shortly after the assassination of Ricky Noone. Blockbuster is not pleased that there is a crime turf war without him.
After descending further into madness, Soames was brought to justice by Nightwing, only to arrange a prison break with the help of the imprisoned vigilante Nite-Wing. This would prove his undoing, since once freed he wasted no time in returning to his old plans, even attempting to enlist Nite-Wing into his reign of terror. The vigilante, however, had a zero-tolerance policy for crime, and, upon realizing Soames' true nature, the two entered into a Mexican standoff that only Nite-Wing survived.