|First appearance||Prince Namor, the Sub-Mariner #23 (March 1970)|
|Created by||Roy Thomas (writer)|
Marie Severin (artist)
|Team affiliations||Heroes for Hire|
Defenders of the Deep
|Notable aliases||Killer Whale|
|Abilities||Superhuman strength, speed, agility, stamina, size and durability|
Superhuman swimming speed
Ability to breathe both on land and in water
Able to communicate with and summon killer whales via high-pitched whistles
Land adaptation via belt
Orka is a fictional character appearing in American comic books published by Marvel Comics. The character was created by Roy Thomas and Marie Severin, and has a killer whale theme. Orka primarily appears as a villain fighting the Avengers, the Fantastic Four, She-Hulk, and the Defenders, and also appears as a member of Heroes for Hire.
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Fictional character biography
Orka was originally an Atlantean soldier in the army of Warlord Krang, and aids the renegade Krang when he attempts to usurp the Atlantean throne from Namor. When this attempt fails, Orka goes into exile from Atlantis with Krang. Orka is then chosen to be the test subject of Dr. Dorcas, the marine scientist who created Tiger Shark, one of Namor's arch foes. Courtesy of a belt with a psionic amplifier, Orka is given the power of a killer whale, and aids Krang once more against Namor. The character skirmishes with fellow creation Tiger Shark, and the pair cause an undersea avalanche that buries them for several months.
Orka eventually freed himself and allies with the other-dimensional Virago, and after battling Namor twice is defeated. The Brand Corporation (a subsidiary of Roxxon Energy Corporation) summon Orka with the aid of the Serpent Crown, and in exchange for his aid is augmented: the character's size is increased to 20 feet (6.1 m) tall and his natural abilities are increased, eliminating the need for the psionic belt. Orka is sent on a mission that brings him into conflict with superhero team the Avengers, with Thunder God Thor knocking him unconscious.
When the Atlantean barbarian Attuma takes over the city of Atlantis, Orka is pardoned from his exile and joins the Imperial Army. Part of an invasion force that attacks the surface world, Orka battles the Avengers and the Fantastic Four, but is defeated by heroine She-Hulk and the Black Panther and imprisoned.
Orka escapes imprisonment and joins marine team Deep Six (also consisting of Attuma, Nagala, Piranha, Sea Urchin and Tiger Shark). The group attack the United States and battles the Avengers and the People's Protectorate and are eventually defeated.
Orka features in several other Marvel titles such as Fantastic Four She-Hulk and the Defenders. After the events of the Civil War, Orka features in the title Heroes for Hire and joins the team (also falling in love with fellow member Misty Knight). He also strikes up a friendship with the Heroes for Hire's invulnerable administrative assistant. Orka is killed in combat by a Doombot (a robotic copy of villain Doctor Doom) reprogrammed by the Headmen.
During the "Dark Reign" storyline, Orka was seen in Erebus gambling for his resurrection. He is later seen on Pluto's jury (alongside Abomination, Armless Tiger Man, Artume, Baron Heinrich Zemo, Commander Kraken, Iron Monger, Jack O'Lantern, Kyknos, Nessus, Scourge of the Underworld, and Veranke) at the trial of Zeus.
Powers and abilities
Orka is an exceptionally strong Atlantean, who courtesy of Doctor Dorcas' enhancements Orka has superhuman strength, speed, stamina, durability, and agility. Orka originally wore a belt which by psionic means provided the added power of a killer whale to the character's already considerable strength. The belt also allowed Orka to exist for indefinite periods on land although he was not at full strength due to dehydration. Using surgical and electrochemical enhancements, the Brand Corporation augmented Orka's natural abilities, which allowed him to retain his strength without the use of the belt. The experimentation also increased Orka's size, resilience and endurance, but at the cost of reduced intelligence. Orka can communicate with and summon killer whales through high-pitched whistles; so long as there are killers whales in his vicinity Orka's physical abilities increase several time over. He can also swim at superhuman speeds.
In other media
Orka appears in the Avengers Assemble episode "Kingbreaker" Pt. 1, voiced by Roger Craig Smith. This version is a commander who is loyal to Attuma and replaces Tiger Shark as the head of Attuma's armed forces. When Black Panther, White Wolf, and Attuma's daughter Lady Elanna bring their fight with Killmonger, Tiger Shark, and the Atlantean soldiers on their side to Atlantis' Coral Guard, Orka and his soldiers show up. When he learns of the coup and Tiger Shark claims that Attuma has gotten soft, Orka sides with Elanna and his soldiers lock up Killmonger, Tiger Shark, and the traitorous Atlantean soldiers. Then he apologizes to Elanna for hesitating. Orka later assists in rescuing the Atlantean civilians from the damages caused by Princess Zanda's bombs and was present when Killmonger kills Attuma. As Black Panther and White Wolf go after Killmonger, Orka gives Lady Elanna her father's trident and swears her in as the new ruler of Atlantis. Orka later led the Atlantean soldiers into attacking Black Panther and White Wolf as they were taking Killmonger as their prisoner due to him knowing where the real Black Widow is.
- Prince Namor, the Sub-Mariner #23 (Mar. 1970). Marvel Comics.
- Prince Namor, the Sub-Mariner #24 (Apr. 1970). Marvel Comics.
- Prince Namor, the Sub-Mariner #66 - 67 (Oct. - Nov. 1973). Marvel Comics.
- Avengers #149 (July 1976). Marvel Comics.
- Avengers Annual #18 (Dec. 1989). Marvel Comics.
- Avengers: Death Trap - The Vault (1991). Marvel Comics.
- Avengers #319 - 324 (July - Oct. 1990). Marvel Comics.
- Fantastic Four #336 (Jan. 1990)
- She-Hulk vol. 2, #12 (Nov. 2006). Marvel Comics.
- Defenders vol. 2, #7 (Sep. 2001) & 11 (Jan. 2002). Marvel Comics.
- Civil War #1 - 7 (July 2006 - Jan. 2007). Marvel Comics.
- Heroes for Hire #4 (Jan. 2007). Marvel Comics.
- Daughters of the Dragon #3 (Mar. 2006). Marvel Comics.
- Heroes for Hire vol. 2 #8 (May 2007). Marvel Comics.
- Incredible Hercules #129. Marvel Comics.
- Amazing Spider-Man Vol. 4 #13. Marvel Comics.
- Avengers Vol. 8 #9. Marvel Comics.
- Avengers Vol. 8 #11. Marvel Comics.
- "Kingbreaker Pt. 1". Avengers Assemble. Season 5. Episode 19. February 10, 2019. Disney XD.
- Orka at the Marvel Universe wiki
- Orka at the Appendix to the Handbook of the Marvel Universe
- The Grand Comics Database entry for the comic containing Orka's debut