Doctor Mid-Nite is a highly-skilled medical surgeon who was blinded by a chemical accident.
Now gifted with eyesight that allows him to see in the dark and equipped with technology that allows him to peruse the infrared spectrum, Doctor Mid-Nite is one of the premier physicians of the Super Hero Community and an esteemed member of the Justice Society of America.
In Sogndal, Norway, the pregnant wife of noted surgeon Theodoric Cross was attacked by vandals but saved by Doctor Mid-Nite (Charles McNider). Immediately going into labour due to the stress, Doctor Mid-Nite helped deliver the baby boy, whom she named "Pieter". Pieter grew up to be a brilliant doctor, graduating Harvard at age 19, and later immigrating to America and working under Dr. Charles McNider as part of his residency.
Pieter’s mother joined him on seminar in Brazil and contracted Chagas disease. By the time Pieter operated on her the disease had already ravaged her body and she died, making her the first patient he lost. A week after her funeral, Pieter learned that his mother’s medical drugs had been diluted by the company that produced them; if not for corporate greed she could have lived another year.
As his residency continued, Pieter became a gifted surgeon; who developed advanced techniques in limb grafting, in addition to being an expert in physics, robotics, and infra red astronomy, but after a well-publicized battle over insurance fraud he lost his residency and vanished from the public eye.
Following the scandal Pieter began operating outside the established medical community. Setting up a free clinic in Portsmouth City, Washington, Pieter aimed to treat those who didn't have the money to get treatment elsewhere.
While retaining his rich, ostentatious lifestyle, with a high-end car and a seaside mansion, every night Pieter went to the slums of the North East Side of the city where he helped out in any way he could; such as supplying the prostitutes with condoms, and delivering fresh spikes and gallons of bleach to the Mercy Mission for a needle exchange program that he set up. His nightly prowls soon earned him the nickname "The Midnight Doctor". Although he had no direct ties to the F.D.A. he often helped out the government in various cases, and also unofficially helps out at some of the larger hospitals in the city.
Several like minded people soon joined his cause, local toughs "Ice Sickle" and "Nite-Lite" as well as former lawyer "Mouthpiece".
Getting involved in a case regarding the drug A39; an unstable derivative of the Venom serum that was intended for use to treat genetic defects but had severe side-effects. When the drug turned up in the streets after being stolen from a government lab, Pieter intended to help out the F.D.A. by getting a hold of a sample. During this endeavour, he met Camilla Marlowe; who was taking the drug for her aversion to light. He cultivated a doctor-patient relationship with her and sought her help in locating the manufacturers of A39.
The narcotic was being produced by a corporation called Praeda Industries, which in turn was ran by the Terrible Trio; a group of three criminals from Gotham City who perform heists dressed as a shark, a vulture and a fox. In an attempt to remove the doctor before he discovered them, the Trio have one of their henchwomen pose as a bar tender and drug Pieter's drink with A39. As he drove home his adrenaline was heightened from the steroid which caused him to have an episode and lose control of the car; causing an accident where a woman is killed. When he finally awakened in Emmanuel Hospital, he discovers that he had lost his eyesight and that his medical license had been revoked due to the drugs that were found in his system by the medical staff.
Depressed over what had happened, Pieter cut off all social ties, including his social work, but Camilla was determined to help him as he had attempted to help her. Persuaded to leave his house for a walk at night, Pieter is attacked by an owl which causes him to remove the bandages over his eyes. However, when he removes the bandages, he is astonished to find that he could see as the drug had interacted with some other chemicals in his bloodstream and had now altered his eyes to see the low level light spectrums; those not normally seen by the human eye.
Reminded of his teacher, Charles McNider, and a certain "Golden Age" mystery man who had been similarly "blind", Pieter created a set of lenses that focused the other light spectrums into his narrowed range and set about creating equipment and a uniform to become the new "Doctor Mid-Nite"; renewing and escalating his endeavour to protect the citizens of Portsmouth City.
Restarting his free medical practice despite his retracted license, Pieter discovered Praeda Industries' involvement in the production of A39 and also learned that Praeda was buying up the dilapidated sections of Portsmouth and forcing out the citizens living there. Surviving an encounter with the Terrible Trio, Pieter eventually discovered the Trio's plan to destroy the rest of Portsmouth's properties so that their properties would increase in comparative value. While the Trio tried to flee after a final confrontation, Mid-Nite's assistants had brought along hundreds of homeless to confront them and Mid-Nite alerted federal authorities, utilizing his growing street crew to foil their other active plans. With the Trio behind bars, the FDA and a certain private philanthropist worked to restore Portsmouth City publicly while "Doctor Mid-Nite" remained to become a local fixture in the city's nightlife.
Eavesdropping on a medical conference in Chicago, Pieter heard about a disturbance in Milwaukee and leaves to see if he could provide assistance, arriving just in time to save Black Canary from an army of shadow beings being controlled by Green Lantern (Alan Scott)'s son, Obsidian. Aiding the Justice Society of America in stopping Obsidian's plan to cloak the planet in shadow from the Shadowlands, Pieter is offered and accepts membership into the team.
Aiding the team in various ventures, Pieter pursued a romantic relationship with Black Canary until Oliver Queen's return from the dead caused her to have conflicting feelings and she broke off their relationship.
Remaining with the team, Pieter's medical skills were kept in constant demand both within the JSA and back in Portsmouth City. Pieter's reputed skills soon became renowned within the Super Hero community and he quickly became the community's number one medical practitioner; resulting in him being sought out by other heroes and their associates outside of the JSA team. Often called upon when an autopsy is needed, or when a hero needs major surgery, Pieter's notable achievements as a physician included determining Alan Scott was composed of the green flame of the Starheart, giving Power Girl her annual checkups as well as testing her powers, emergency surgery on Hourman, removal of the Brainiac virus from Oracle, the autopsy of Sue Dibny, and removing the sniper bullet that wounded Lois Lane in Umec. He is also called upon by other medical agencies, such as S.T.A.R. Labs, when emergencies or dilemmas appear.
As time goes by, Pieter continues his mission to preserve life as a hero of Portsmouth City and an esteemed member of the Justice Society of America.
- An Iconic Battle Suit based on Doctor Mid-Nite; "Mid-Nite" is available from Time Torn Time Capsules, which were released alongside the Age of Justice episode. Equipping the whole set grants the feat Chronon Active, which increases the chance for rare collection drops in the episode's content.
Associated Equipment Edit
- Pieter Cross first appeared in Doctor Mid-Nite #1 (February, 1999).
- The original Dr Mid-Nite (Charles McNider) had a series of American wood owl "sidekicks" named "Hootie" (the original of which helped inspire him to become Dr Mid-Nite) that would accompany him on his adventures. In honour of this, Pieter also adopted an American wood owl, the very one that had attacked him after he had gone blind, and named it "Charlie"; presumably after his predecessor, Charles McNider.
- Pieter funds various environmental projects, such as Prof. Atticus Searles' quest to make oil more inert, which would reduce the hazards of oceanic oil spills.
- Pieter is a Vegetarian and has been practising Yoga for ten years before joining the JSA.
- Pieter has two reformed street thugs that aid him at the Portsmouth City clinic; "Ice Sickle" and "Nite Lite". The duo loyally act as Pieter's medical assistants and errand runners for both his medical and vigilante activities.
- A friend of Pieter's; Camilla Marlowe, a young web-designer and ex-drug addict who harboured dreams of being a mystery writter, set up the "Dr. Mid-Nite Web Site" to aid Pieter cause to help the city's citizens. People could use the website to report crimes in Portsmouth City and also receive free medical advice. Marlowe also serialises Pieter's adventures as "Doctor Mid-Nite"; publishing the stories on another website that she ran and fulfilling her dream of becoming a mystery writer.
- Pieter is also highly intelligent and a prodigy, he is considered to be the second most intelligent person on the JSA after Mister Terrific.
- Pieter's gauntlets carry a wide variety of chemicals, medicines, and small-scale equipment. They also host a variety of scalpels and other sharp instruments that Cross can use either in surgery or in combat. He also uses crescent moon throwing blades shaped like his emblem.
- Pieter's cowl has special infrared lenses, through which he can see in light; he can also equip alternate ultrasonic and x-ray lenses to aid in medical situations, as well as receive images from a camera strapped to his owl.
- Doctor Mid-Nite's iconic weapon is the Blackout Bomb; a round pellet developed by the late Doctor Charles McNider that emits a cloud of inky black smoke, designed to plunge adversaries into a field of perpetual darkness. This, coupled with his metahuman eyesight, gives Mid-Nite an advantage over his adversaries.
- The Batman conducts covert research on Cross's abilities and concludes that the full extent of his enhanced vision has not yet been reached.