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Villain Overview

SSSmokin!
~ One of The Mask's most famous quotes.
It's party time! P-A-R-T-why? Because I GOTTA!
~ The Mask.

The Mask, also known as Big Head in the comics, is the titular villainous main protagonist of the The Mask comic book series and franchise, originally titled Masque. While he appears as a far more heroic and playful figure in the cartoon and movie, this is the polar opposite of his comic book version, where he is sadistic and desires nothing but chaos. He is the manifestation of the infamous Mask of Loki's magical powers once worn by anyone who places it on their face. The Mask is powerful but causes the wearer to lose their sanity. The Mask itself is the titular antagonist of the series due to using the person who wears the mask as it's hosts and causing chaos anywhere it goes.

In the 1994 film adaptation, the Stanley Ipkiss incarnation of The Mask was portrayed by Jim Carrey, who also portrayed The Riddler in Batman Forever, the titular character in The Cable Guy, The Grinch in Dr. Seuss' How the Grinch Stole Christmas, Count Olaf in Lemony Snicket's A Series of Unfortunate Events, Steve Gray in The Incredible Burt Wonderstone and Dr. Robotnik in the Sonic the Hedgehog film series. In The Mask: Animated Series, he was voiced by Rob Paulsen.

Origin

Comics

In the comics, all that is known about the Mask's origin is that it once belonged to an ancient African tribe that placed curses and hexes on it. It has since possed many people through the series.

Films and Animated Series

in the film adaptation, the Mask was created between the end of the 4th century AD and the beginning of the 5th century AD by Loki, the Norse God of Mischief, who threw it on Earth so that it could cause chaos, confusion and terror among humanity.

Wearers of The Mask

These were the people that the Mask possessed through the various installments.

Stanley Ipkiss

The first incarnation of the character, Stanley Ipkiss was a weak, neurotic man who purchased the mask as a gift for his girlfriend Kathy. After it was purchased, the mask began to speak to Stanley and urged him to put it on and transformed him into a superhuman. After gaining his new powers, Stanley promptly went on a killing spree by murdering the people who had bullied and taken advantage of him, eventually being nicknamed the "Big Head Killer" by the police.

After removing the mask, Stanley's actions took an emotional toll on him, causing him to become verbally abusive towards Kathy and get kicked out of their apartment as a result. Stanley later breaks into Kathy's apartment and both retrieves the mask and kills eleven police officers on his way back to his house. Upon returning to his house, Stanley removes the mask and plans leave the city. However, he is shot in the back and killed by Kathy, who had figured out his identity.

Lieutenant Mitch Kellaway

The second incarnation of The Mask, Lieutenant Kellaway was an honest cop who Kathy gave the mask to for safe keeping. Stressed by the Big Head killings and organized crime lords slowly taking over the city, Kellaway disregards Kathy's warnings about the mask and puts it on. After gaining the powers of the Mask, Kellaway tries to use his new powers and identity for good by murdering Edge City's mob bosses, although his methods become increasingly violent. While fighting Walter, a mute and immensely powerful mob muscle-man. Kellaway, unlike Stanley, uses his powers to protect innocent people. Despite using violent methods, he gets the evidence to have a crooked lawyer exposed and leaves him alive instead of killing him. He was talking friendly to the police despite being fired by the chief. Kellaway ends up being shot at by a police squadron and decides to fight them as he can see they are not going to let him off easily. During the battle, he nearly ends up killing his friend and partner with a stick of dynamite. Before it exploded, Kellaway snapped out of the blood-rage and put the dynamite in his mouth, causing him to explode, which he uses it to fake Big Head's death. Despite Kathy knocking on his door demanding to take the mask back, he buries the mask in a cement filled hole in his basement.

Nunzio

The third incarnation of The Mask, Nunzio was a wimpy mob driver who had the mask forcibly put on him after several mobsters ended up stealing it from Lieutenant Kellaway. After becoming the new Big Head, Nunzio killed his former companions and slaughtered all of Edge City's remaining crime lords in order to become the city's only mob boss. After learning of the new Big Head, Kathy dressed up as a hooker and wooed Nunzio into removing the mask, pulling out a gun and killing him immediately afterwards. Widely considered as the only comic book incarnation of the mask who can't be sympathized.

Kathy Matthews

The fourth (technically second and the first female) incarnation is Kathy Matthews who was the ex girlfriend of Stanley and put on the mask to stop the Mob War. Like Kellaway, she uses her powers and abilities to do good, and she fights Walter. During the fight, after she nearly loses control, she realizes it's not worth wearing the mask, so she takes it off. She concedes the mask to Walter, however the mask ends up going into the ocean as a result of Kellaway hitting Walter with his car.

Rick

The fifth incarnation is Rick, who was an anarchist wanna-be teen and a big fan of Big Head. One time when Rick was investigating the area where Big Head supposedly died, he discovered the mask buried in the rumble. Rick used the mask to impress his friends, however it only tempted all them to want to take it from him. Rick was eventually arrested by the police but escaped, only to be confronted by Walter. In the ensuing fight, Rick hit Walter with a stampede of animals, but he starts to lose control when he almost killed a kid who asked for his autograph. Rick flees from the scene, when he makes it back to the apartment he removes the mask and throws it to Ben. Rick explains his troubled state, wishing he would've thought about the risks before putting it on. He is the first Mask to not kill anyone.

Ben

The sixth Incarnation is one of Rick's friends, Ben. He took the mask from Rick and put on the mask to become a rockstar. Despite getting a show that night, the mask takes over Ben's body as he sings, earning him "boos" from the crowd. When Walter returns, Ben flees from the stage to meet up with Hugo and takes off the mask.

Hugo

The seventh incarnation is the third teen from the group, Hugo. When Detective Kellaway tracks them down, Hugo puts on the mask to disguise himself and sneak away. Hugo makes his way to his parents' house, on the way, he notices while wearing the mask that his vision of reality is very distorted. Hugo begins to lose his sanity, so he quickly runs off to Archie's apartment and rips it off, throwing it to Archie. He is the first Mask to use shapeshifting to disguise the mask.

Archie

The eighth incarnation and final teen in the friend group is Archie. Despite Hugo saying he's the only with any sense, Archie quickly puts on the mask to become a superhero and try to redeem Big-Head's reputation. Archie stops two mobsters attempting to kill a prized zoo lion, but he gets cornered by Walter. The fighting takes them to a cemetery where Archie incapacitates Walter with the lion. Kellaway approaches Archie and empathizes with Archie's desire to use the Mask for good, but he assures Archie the Mask is nothing but pure evil and sooner or later he'll loose control. Devastated with the fear of losing control and hurting innocents, Archie concedes the mask to Kellaway. However, Walter takes the mask from him and attempts to wear it. When the mask refuses to bond with him, Walter throws the mask into the river.

Ray Tuttle

Ray uses the mask, but unlike most is more of a anti-hero than a villain, since he does not hurt innocent people and only hurts or kills those who are not.

Emily Tuttle

Ray's daughter and she wore the mask as well, but like her father is more of a anti-hero as she only causes harmless chaos and protects innocent people who are being bullied like she was and even saves her father from being killed along with Kellaway.

Paul Newmen

Snuck

Ira Staub

Aldo Krasker

Eric Martin

Crossover Characters

Lobo

In Lobo vs. The Mask, after Lobo fights and subsequently teams up with the new Big Head to search the galaxy for the "Ultimate Bastich", a former Mask wearer who racked up a large bounty after decimating a number of planets, they stop at a truck stop where Lobo ends up winning the Mask. After putting the Mask on, Lobo causes even more destruction until he ends up being sucked into a black hole and sent back in time by a month. Upon ending up in the past, Lobo realizes that he was actually the "Ultimate Bastich", removes the Mask and tosses it to where the wearer he won it from found it at the start of the story. Lobo then breaks the time loop by apprehending his past self and turning him in for the reward money.

The Joker

The Joker after putting on the Mask.

In Joker/Mask, the Joker gets his hands on the Mask upon finding it in a museum in Gotham City. After putting the Mask on, Joker is transformed into the new Big Head, although, unlike other Mask wearers, the Mask didn't bring out his inner most desires (as Joker never repressed or hid them) and only made him unstoppable. With his new powers, Joker rejuvenates his criminal career by nearly killing Batman, destroying the Batmobile and taking over Gotham, resulting in Commissioner Gordon calling Lieutenant Kellaway over from Edge City to help deal with the new Joker.

Joker, with help from Harley Quinn, then takes over Gotham TV and begins airing his own shows, all of which consist of senseless violence. After a series of events, Batman recovers from his injuries and tells Joker that, with the Mask on, he is no longer funny and has degraded himself to reusing the same material over and over again. As Joker begins beating Batman, the original Joker's head sprouts from his shoulders and tells him that he really isn't funny before taking control of his body, removing the Mask and turning himself back to normal. Soon afterwards, Joker is apprehended by the police and taken to Arkham Asylum.

Other Media

The Mask (film)

The Mask as he appears in the film.

In the film adaptation, which is loosely based on the first few issues of the comics, a significantly different, yet somewhat accurate version of the Stanley Ipkiss incarnation appears as the titular protagonist. In the film, Stanley Ipkiss discovered the Mask of Loki after it rose from a chest in the ocean and, upon putting it on, was turned into a superhuman who operates on cartoon logic.

Unlike in the comics, this version of The Mask is mostly a heroic character, despite committing multiple crimes such as nearly destroying a man's car, attempting to murder a gang of thugs with a Tommy gun, heavily injuring the mechanics who had ripped him off (unlike in the comic, where he actually killed them) and most notably robbing the bank he worked at, resulting in the death of Freeze. These makes him more of a harmless yet highly unhinged anti-hero rather than a serial killer.

Towards the end of the film, Dorian Tyrell steals the Mask of Loki from Stanley and puts it on, bringing out his inner desire for power, turning himself into a hulking, monstrous version of The Mask, although he is defeated and killed once the Mask gets back into Stanley's hands.

The Mask: The Animated Series

In the animated series, which takes place after the film, Stanley still uses the Mask of Loki to protect Edge City, although it is stated that he would prefer not to, as The Mask's chaotic antics and lack of responsibility can end up causing destruction, as well as him constantly being hounded by Lieutenant Kellaway, who believes him to be a threat. But as before The Mask is a harmless, but still highly unhinged anti-hero. In various episodes, the Mask has gotten into the hands of several antagonists, most notably Pretorius, Fish Guy, Government Guy, and Walter (although, like in the comics, wearing the Mask of Loki does not affect him).

Son of the Mask

Tim Avery.jpg

In the sequel, a cartoonist named Tim Avery becomes the new wearer of the Mask after his dog Otis found it in a river and brought it before him. He first tries on the mask at a party he goes to and becomes the host of it after it was starting to turn out as a drag. Tim Avery later had a baby born with the same powers as the mask.

Odin confronts his son Loki, who is in search of the Mask, and tells him about a baby born with its powers as a clue to find it. Otis begins to feel left out as Tim is spending more time with his baby so he takes the Mask for himself.

However, Tim's time with his son Alvey turned out to be a nightmare for him as he discovers his son's powers. As Loki eventually found them, he goes after Tim and threatens him to hand over his mask. As Tim tells him he doesn't have it, Loki attempts to kill him, but is then stopped by Odin, who possesses Tim's body and strips him of his powers.

Later that night, Loki sneaks into Alvey's room, where Alvey is sleeping, and contacts Odin, begging him to return his powers as he explains how close he was at reclaiming his mask. Odin complies as he gives Loki a second chance, but has him set on a timer.

Once his powers return to him, Loki approaches Tim and demands him to hand over the Mask or he will take Alvey away from him, before leaving with the baby. Tim and his wife encounters Loki at a dark alley and gives him his mask. However, Loki refuses to return Alvey as he grew fond of him during his wait. Otis suddenly bites Loki, causing him to drop the mask and allowing Tim to wear it. Loki makes a run for it with Alvey in his car, prompting Tim and Tonya to drive after him to a wrestling arena, where he and Loki fight over Alvey. Loki then decides to give Alvey the choice between the two of them.

At first, Loki draws Alvey over to him, but then Tim takes off the mask and tells Alvey about how he wants to raise him and that he loves him, making Alvey choose him instead. However, Loki refuses to give up, as he now attempts to kill the entire family until his timer went up. Odin soon appears before Loki and scolds him for his failure. He is then about to strike at him until Tim interrupts as he tells him that nothing is more important in life than the relationship of your family. Tim then gives back the Mask and Loki and Odin return home.

Space Jam: A New Legacy

The Mask makes a few cameos in the 2021 film Space Jam: A New Legacy, the anticipated sequel to the 1996 Warner Bros. hybrid film Space Jam, with Jim Carrey reprising his role as him. He appears alongside various characters and villains from other Warner Bros. properties as one of the speculators of Al-G Rhythm's basketball game.

Powers and Abilities

The Mask of Loki

The Mask has various powers such as super-strength, speed, intelligence, and durability. He also has the ability to warp reality. He is also super agile and has a strong healing factor that makes him immune to typical means of harm.

Other abilities of The Mask are immortality, duplication, shapeshifting, creation, summoning, transfiguration, size manipulation, creating tornadoes and the ability to stretch his limbs. His powers also make him almost incapable of being hurt by normal means.

Finally, he has toon awareness making him know that he is a fictional character.

Trivia

  • The Mask is never referred to as Big Head in the film or in the animated series.
    • Likewise, the Mask itself is not referred as the Mask of Loki in the comics, since it doesn't share the same origin as the film version.
  • In The Mask: The Animated Series, Nimrel and Skillit have mentioned knowing every person who ever wore The Mask.
  • He faced Deadpool in a episode of the popular internet show DEATH BATTLE The Mask was the victor due to his superior strength, powers and immunity to pain or damage as well as being even more unpredictable.
  • While all incarnations of the mask are chaotic and homicidal, the mask's personality heavily depends on the wearer. Hence why some versions aren't nearly as villainous.

External links

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           TheMaskLogo.png Villains

Comics
Original series: "Big Head" | Abner Mead | Eugene Rapaz | Mask Hunters | Nunzio | Papa Croc | Walter
Adventures of The Mask: Bombshell | Couch Potato | Dober-Man | Greenthumb

Movies
The Mask: Dorian Tyrell | Sweet Eddy | Orlando | Freeze | Niko
Son of the Mask: Loki

Television
Aliens | Andrew Bedwetter | Dr. Amelia Chronos | Baxter Simon | Beauregard Klaxon | Celia N. Airtight | Channel Surfer | Cheap Chucky | Cybermite | Dark Star Trio | Davida Steelmine | The Devil | Gorgonzola | Government Guy | The Hood | Kablamus | Lonnie the Shark | Lonnie's Biker Gang | Madame Suspiria | The Mask | Phoney Frenchman | Pretorius | Putty Thing and Fish Guy | Selina Swint | Skillit | Sly Eastenegger | The Stinger | The Tempest | Tex Clobber | Walter | Willamina Bubask

Crossovers
Harley Quinn | Joker | Lobo | Poison Ivy

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Animated Features
Rothbart | Bridget

Live-Action Films
Freddy Krueger | Critters | Shredder | Tatsu | Jobe Smith | Tokka and Rahzar | Walker | Lord Norinaga | It | Drop Dead Fred | Annabel | Jason Voorhees | Leland Gaunt | John "Ace" Merrill | Jed Hill | Azro | The Mask | Dorian Tyrell | Sweet Eddy | Orlando | Freeze | Niko | Nicholas Andre | Shang Tsung | Kano | Goro | Sub-Zero | Scorpion | Reptile | Shao Kahn | Dr. Evil | Scott Evil | Frau Farbissina | Number Two | Alotta Fagina | Sindel | Shinnok | Mileena | Motaro | Sheeva | Ermac | Jade | Baraka | Cyrax | Smoke | Fembots | Vanessa Kensington | Glenn Gulia | Spider Smith | Dr. Zachary Smith | Deacon Frost | Quinn | Vanessa Brooks | Mercury | Racquel | Pearl | Officer Krieger | Thomas Griffin | Sang | Clive Cobb | Derek Vinyard | Mini-Me | Fat Bastard | Adrian | Cassius | The Peeper | Sauron | Saruman | Gollum | Durin's Bane | Gríma Wormtongue | Witch-king of Angmar | Nazgûl | Gothmog | Orcs | Uruk-hai | Trolls | Olog-hai | Ricky Tan | Hu Li | Steven Reign | Zing | Chuck Cedar | Mac McGrath | Goldmember | Jared Nomak | Eli Damaskinos | Reaper Strain | Dieter Reinhardt | Scud | Willard Stiles | Ben | Mr. Frank Martin | George Miller | Tommy Miller | Drake | Central Park Rangers | Danica Talos | Asher Talos | Jarko Grimwood | Pac-Man | Werewolf | Loki | Kenji | Varden Reynard | Dragon Lady Jasmine | Ron Fox | Colton Graham | Big Bob | Jason Voorhees | Freddy Krueger | David Harken | Julia Harris | Bobby Pellitt | Azog | Yazneg | Torturer of Dol Guldur | Goblins (Great Goblin) | Bolg | Smaug | Master of Laketown | General Fallon | Giants | Lord Roderick | Wickie | Adele Pinchelow | Travis & Captain Lippencott | Rex Hanson | Bert Hanson | Daniel Riddick | Susan Riddick | Claire Wyden | Brett Wyden | George, Ralph and Lizzie | Shang Tsung | Sub-Zero | Mileena | Reiko | Kano | Kabal | Goro | Reptile | Nitara | Gabriel

See Also
Austin Powers Villains | Blade Villains | Castle Rock Entertainment Villains | DC Extended Universe Villains | Farrelly Brothers Villains | Friday the 13th Villains | Horrible Bosses Villains | Middle-Earth Villains | Mortal Kombat Villains | Pink Flamingos Villains | Rush Hour Villains | SHAZAM Villains | Sony Pictures Villains | Spawn Villains | Stephen King Villains | The Conjuring Villains | The Mask Villains | The Sandlerverse Villains | TMNT Villains | Universal Studios Villains | Village Roadshow Pictures Villains | Warner Bros. Villains

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