Metamorpho is an adventurer and treasure hunter with the ability to control all the elemental compounds within and beyond the periodic table.
Able to alter his body to form the shapes and consistencies of any element (be it gas, liquid or solid) and combine them to form complex compounds, Metamorpho is, however, unable to assume a human appearance due to no longer being composed of flesh, blood and bone. Due to this, despite his power, he regards his metamorphic abilities as a disease and continually seeks a cure for his condition so that he may live life as a normal human with his love, Sapphire Stagg.
Rex Mason was an adventurer and soldier-of-fortune who was courting Sapphire Stagg; the daughter of Stagg Enterprises CEO, Simon Stagg. Unwilling to let his daughter fraternize with the adventurer, Simon Stagg employs Rex to retrieve the Orb or Ra; a rare Egyptian artifact buried within the Pyramid of Ahk-Ton in Egypt as part of a plan to "remove" him. While finding the artifact, Rex is attacked by Simon Stagg's bodyguard; a sentient Neanderthal called "Java", and left for dead within the pyramid. However, Rex's body is exposed to radioactive energies that were being emitted by a meteorite and he was transformed into a metamorphae; gaining the ability to shapeshift and change himself into any element found in the human body, or any combinations thereof.
Returning to confront Simon Stagg for his murder attempt, it was discovered that the Orb of Ra could control Rex's body and so Simon used this knowledge to his advantage to peddle Rex's new abilities to aid in Stagg Enterprises endeavors. Seeking assistance in returning himself to normal, Rex contacted the Justice League of America who were unable to help him. Instead the group offered him membership only for him to turn it down due to his desire to return to normal.
After Sapphire marries another man, a man named Wally Bannister, Rex falls in with a man named Mr Shadow, with whom he works to take down a tyrannical immortal Queen bent on world conquest. However, Mr Shadow was revealed to have been attempting to control Rex for his own ends and abandons him to be tried for the murder of Wally Bannister, who was actually murdered by Algon; a Metamorphae who had lived for centuries in a depowered state. Despite this, Rex was convicted in a kangaroo court and executed but later revived by his friends.
Continuing his pursuit to return to normal, Rex immerses himself for an extended period of time within a painful chemical bath concocted by Simon Stagg, however, Stagg later retrieves him from this "cure" too early because he needed Mason to save Sapphire from a threat.
Rex continued his adventuring solo, until the day when Batman's associate, Lucius Fox, was kidnapped in Markovia by Baron Bedlam. At just that time, Metamorpho had been seeking a cure from Markovian scientist, Dr. Helga Jace. Metamorpho aided in overthrowing Bedlam and decided to stay on with this new group of heroes, whose name he coined: the Outsiders.
When it seemed that Doctor Jace was on her way to discovering a way to cure Rex, she helped him reunite with Sapphire. The reunion was brief, however, as Simon killed Rex using the Orb of Ra. To restore him, the Outsiders returned to Egypt, in search of the meteor that had originally transformed him. There, they were transported back in time to 1200 B.C. where Rex was again exposed to the ancient meteor and restored. Upon their return to the 20th century, Sapphire Stagg, after finally getting fed up with Rex's indecision over proposing to her due to his "condition", proposed to Rex herself, which he wholeheartedly accepted.
When the Outsiders foiled an assassination attempt on Simon Stagg, Stagg relented and gave his blessing to the wedding of Rex to his daughter. As Rex and Sapphire readied for their wedding, his former foe, Maxwell Tremaine, sent his shape-changing lackey, Even Steven, to kidnap Sapphire by impersonating Rex. However, when Even Steven took on Rex's appearance he also took on Rex's feelings and betrayed Tremaine to free Sapphire, killing them both.
After the wedding, the happy couple decided to try to find a way to conceive a baby, but hopes for children were dashed after much physical examination and so, Rex agreed to undergo an experiment which would infuse him with new DNA. Unfortunately, while Doctor Jace began this treatment, the Manhunters activated their sleeper agents on Earth and Jace captured the Outsiders and destroyed Rex and herself.
Believed dead, Rex lay dormant for quite some time before he was reconstituted by the Dominators' Gene Bomb during the invasion of the Alien Alliance. Soon thereafter, he suffered temporary amnesia and forgot about his family, instead resuming his heroic career and becoming a charter member of Justice League Europe in Paris until Sapphire sought him out and revealed that he now had an infant son named Joey. Unfortunately, by then, Sapphire had been pressured into marrying Java and, due to Rex being unable to cope with the perceived betrayal, he and Sapphire went their separate ways. Following this, Rex fell in love with fellow JLE member Crimson Fox (Vivian D'Aramis). Although Vivian returned his feelings, she became torn when her former husband, Rene, returned from the dead and she ultimately opted to fake her own death to be with Rene.
After the revelation that Rex's son, Joey, had the ability to transform the elements around him; albeit without control, for everyone's safety, Rex agreed to place the boy in Simon Stagg's care. Once this was done, however, Stagg forbade Rex from ever seeing Sapphire, using Joey as a hostage. For his son's safety, Rex abided this until he met a woman named Jillian Conway, who had also been transformed into a Metamorphae by the meteor. She convinced Rex that she knew a way to cure them of their metamorphosis and Rex stole Joey away from Stagg in the hope that this miracle would work for his son, too. However, Rex soon discovered that Conway had misread the hieroglyphics and when she attempted to reverse the process on herself, she was instead destroyed. In the confusion, Joey had escaped and found his way to the the meteor. Since the meteor transforms those who touch it, and Joey transforms the things he touches, both canceled each other out and while Joey was cured of his condition, the meteor was rendered inert.
Later, when the White Martian Hyperclan attacked the intermittent JLA's orbiting satellite following the dissolution of the United Nations funded Justice Leagues, Rex protected his teammates as they reentered the Earth's atmosphere. While his teammates survived, Rex was rendered "inert" and he was buried with solemn honors at the Valhalla Cemetery for heroes. After his body was temporarily made active by the wish-granting Id, Rex's spirit remained alive and contacted Sapphire to use the Orb of Ra to restore him.
During his time as a spirit, a fragment of Rex's body had formed itself into its own being and joined Nightwing and Arsenal's Outsiders team, believing itself to be the original Metamorpho. After Rex returned to life, he allowed his fragment, which renamed itself "Shift", to live until Shift approached him a year after the Infinite Crisis incident to be re-assimilated after no longer being able to bear the tragedies he experienced in a life as a black ops agent.
Rex stepped in to fill Shift's position in the team, until, following the attack on Washington DC by the Amazons of Themyscira, the Outsiders went through an organizational change and Nightwing deferred leadership to Batman. Batman screened several known heroes to see who would be appropriate for the new roster, and Rex was one of the veteran members selected for the team, beating out Aquaman.
- While he has yet to appear in DC Universe Online, conceptual renders of Metamorpho do exist for the game.
- Metamorpho first appeared in The Brave and The Bold #57 (December 1964)
- Although his powers make him near unstoppable, due to all chemical reactions stopping at sub-zero temperatures, Rex can be contained by being doused with liquid nitrogen. Or by being subjected to influence from the Orb of Ra.
- Rex was the second hero to reject offered membership into the JLA since the group's creation, the first being interstellar adventurer and Hero of Rann; Adam Strange.
- Rex is but one of many metamorphae, created by the sun god Ra over the centuries through the meteor to serve as warriors in his battle against the god Apep. However, by the time of Rex's transformation, Apep had long died some 3,000 years previously. Despite being informed of this, Ra continues to create metamorphae regardless.
- Metamorpho briefly had a crimefighting partner: a CIA agent named Urania "Rainie" Blackwell, who deliberately exposed herself to the Orb and gained its powers. Calling herself "Element Girl", Urania worked with Rex on a number of cases until she eventually pensioned out of the agency due to being unable to cope with her appearance and powers and her unrequited attraction to Rex becoming too much for her to bare. Becoming a recluse, sheltering within her apartment for years, the ensuing loneliness took its toll on her and Urania contemplated death. Eventually, Death visited her apartment and advised Urania to make a plea to Ra. Urania did as suggested and asked Ra to take away her abilities and allow her to die. Ra heard her request and allowed Element Girl to turn to dust and blow away.
- Metamorpho has died and come back at least three times. On one occasion, Superman was the only person who bothered to attend his funeral because everyone else just figured the hero would be back sooner or later.
|Heroes||Arsenal - Batgirl - Batman - Black Lightning - Fire - Geo-Force - Grace Choi - Green Arrow - Huntress - Metamorpho - Nightwing - Starfire|
|Villains||The Brain - Brother Blood - Deathstroke - Felix Faust - Gizmo - Gorilla Grodd - Jinx - Mammoth - Manhunters - Monsieur Mallah - Psimon - Doctor Sivana|
|Other||Captain Boomerang (Owen Mercer) - Catwoman - Martian Manhunter - Phantom Stranger|
|Bunker - Penthouse - Dive|
|Weapons||Dual Pistol - Exobyte-Infused Escrima Sticks - Katana|
|Apparel||Dark Specter Batsuit - High Voltage|
|Stagg Enterprises Gotham HQ|
|Checkmate - Church of Blood - Fearsome Five - Justice League of America - OMAC - Stagg Enterprises - Suicide Squad - Teen Titans|