A Hydra lieutenant and black-cowled villain
A gaunt, almost withered man of over six feet in height, Eric Williams is rarely seen outside of his hooded black cloak and black bodysuit, making him the very image of the grim reaper from which he takes his name. His left hand has been replaced by a massive scythe-blade which is often wreathed in crackling purple energy.
Eric Williams, the brother of Simon Williams (also known as Wonder Man), was born in Paterson, New Jersey. Eric was always the black sheep of his family. His mother would tell him that he was “born bad,” while heaping affection on Simon. Eric’s father was charged with disciplining him, but was abusive and uncaring. He even preferred to watch TV lazily, while Eric was torturing the family cat. At the same time, their mother Martha was loving and attentive to Simon, making Eric bitter and jealous as a result.
One day Eric was playing with chemicals in the garage, and caused a fire which burned down their house. Simon felt guilty for having not stopped Eric, and resolved to be responsible for Eric from there on. As they grew older, Simon grew studious while Eric was an athlete. Eric also became more rebellious, and tried to get Simon to join him in his petty thefts. Eventually Eric joined the Maggia and moved to Las Vegas. Meanwhile Simon took over the family business, Williams Innovations.
Partly due to competition with Stark Industries, Williams Innovations began to fail. Desperate, Simon turned to Eric and his mob ties for help. Simon embezzled money from the company to invest with Eric, but Simon was caught and jailed. Simon was freed from jail by Baron Zemo, induced by an offer of revenge on Tony Stark by defeating Iron Man and the Avengers. Simon was transformed into Wonder Man, in order to infiltrate the Avengers. Zemo’s empowering process also poisoned Simon, ensuring his loyalty in exchange for the antidote. Simon’s better nature won out though, and he died saving the Avengers from Zemo’s trap.
Learning of Simon’s death, Eric was inflamed with guilt and anger. Through his Maggia contacts, he contacted the Tinkerer who provided him with his scythe weapon, which was further enhanced by Ultron. Taking the name “Grim Reaper,” he defeated the Avengers but was beaten by the surprise appearance of the Panther.
After several more villainous misadventures, the Grim Reaper has become a veritable force of nature. He possesses strange powers drawn from the Darkforce Dimension as well as having permanently replaced a hand with his power scythe. He is faster, stronger, and tougher than any normal human because of his connection to the Darkforce, and his utter ruthlessness serves him well as a lieutenant in the Hydra organization.