"Fate is a fickle thing." - Kent Nelson, Absolute Justice, Part 1

Kent Nelson was a retired member of the Justice Society of America who could bond with the Helmet of Nabu to become Doctor Fate.

He came out of retirement and bonded with the helmet once more to help take down Icicle. Doctor Fate saw the fate of John Jones and allowed himself to be killed by Icicle to restore John's powers.

Physical Appearance

"He was wearing a gold plated helmet and a cape, which actually looked pretty good." - Lois Lane, Absolute Justice, Part 1
Kent Nelson-1

Kent Nelson.


Doctor Fate.

Kent was a middle-aged man, who had been driven insane by the Helmet of Nabu and was now living on the streets of Metropolis. He had blonde hair and gray eyes and an unshaven appearance. He was normally seen wearing old and battered clothing and a torn ball cap. He also carried a bowling bag with him that contained the helmet.

As Doctor Fate, Kent was magically transformed into wearing a padded blue leather costume, with gold boots, gloves, a golden cape that was clasped on his chest with a round gold amulet and a golden belt. The Helmet of Nabu was a full-faced helmet with glowing golden-red eyes.

Powers and Abilities


Dr. Fate using his powers.

  • Helmet of Nabu: Dr. Fate's powers were all derived from his golden helmet, called the Helmet of Nabu. The helmet contains the mystical spirit of the ancient Nabu.
  • Magic: While wearing the Helmet of Nabu, Kent Nelson as Doctor Fate, could conjure and manipulate magic very well.

Dr. Fate opening a portal to Mars.

  • Teleportation: While wearing the Helmet of Nabu, Kent Nelson as Doctor Fate, could teleport himself and others to anywhere on Earth and across time and space.
  • Telekinesis: While wearing the Helmet of Nabu, Kent Nelson could move objects and people with his mind.
  • Precognition: While wearing the Helmet of Nabu, he could see into possible futures of others but not for himself.

Using the Helmet of Nabu, Kent Nelson is able to access near-unlimited magical abilities. The full extent of Fate's powers are unknown, however he did demonstrate the ability to teleport, transmute matter, flight and see into possible futures of others but not for himself. Fate was also capable of returning John Jones' Martian abilities shortly before Kent was murdered by opening a small warp hole to Mars and having Jones be in the atmosphere of Mars for a short period of time. The mask itself appears to be sentient, speaking to Kent in low-whispers, offering advice and knowledge and even magical abilities such as teleportation. However, the mask needs a host in order to execute most of its abilities.

Early life


Dr.Fate in the JSA Portrait.

"I wish I could remember what my life was before Doctor Fate. I think I had a wife her name was Inza and I had a family but don't know where they are. I scared them away." - Kent Nelson, Absolute Justice, Part 1

After the group had disbanded due to the actions of the government agency, Checkmate, Kent had to force his Helmet of Nabu away, which left him in a somewhat vegetable state. Though still functioning, Kent was "scrounging around the streets, looking for the secrets of the universe in trash cans."


Kent being taken away from his wife Inza.

He continued to hold onto the Helmet for all the years to come, when the Justice Society of America was targeted by a metahuman assassin known as Icicle.

Season Nine

"This magic reveals the fate of people around me, I look into the window of the future and witness what might be. But eventually it became too much, I saw too much." - Dr. Fate, Absolute Justice

Kent Nelson becomes Dr. Fate again.

He was brought back to their old headquarters by their leader, Carter Hall, rambling and scared after the helmet was telling him the fate of the rest of the JSA. Called into the act of duty, he, once again, reunited with the Helmet to become the mysterious Doctor Fate as Carter once more became Hawkman to honor Shiera as Courtney became Stargirl.


Dr. Fate using his powers on Joar Mahkent.

Doctor Fate then went to the original Icicle who was at Metropolis General Hospital in a catatonic state and was drawing knowledge from him when Clark and Chloe entered. Doctor Fate realized Clark's destiny and teleported himself and Clark to the JSA's former headquarters. Carter arrived and wondered why Clark was so important and Doctor Fate says that Clark is a different kind of hero, who isn't a hero for pleasure, or revenge, just as he feels it is right. As Green Arrow bursts in trying to save Clark, Hawkman and Green Arrow face off as John Jones entered.


Dr Fate with Clark.

The squadron of heroes then stood around the JSA table as Carter explained that the JSA were hunted by the government who wanted to unmask them and tore their lives apart. As the heroes split up to track Icicle, Doctor Fate and Clark stayed behind as Doctor Fate revealed to Clark that his destiny was far more important than any, revealing that he will lead the new generation of heroes as Hawkman did his.


Dr. Fate talks to Lois.

He said that Clark will defeat Lex Luthor and will help the silver age embrace heroes when he reveals himself to the world. When Lois arrived at the museum, Clark fled as Doctor Fate opened the door. Lois entered and Doctor Fate sees her future and reveals to her that the "savior" will need her as she will need him. Lois then left and Fate closed the door.


Dr. Fate's demise.

After searching for Icicle with John Jones, Fate was able to sympathize with the Martian for he too had a family. Before being killed, Fate managed to restore John's powers. His helmet was stolen by Icicle but the JSA managed to retrieve it back, waiting for a successor.

In the Comics

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Dr. Fate as he appears in the comics.

Doctor Fate (also known by the diminutive, Fate) first appeared in More Fun Comics #55 (May 1940). Beginning in the 1940s, the character was also a member of Golden Age all-star group, the Justice Society of America. Initially, Doctor Fate was Kent Nelson, the son of a Swedish archaeologist, Sven Nelson, who died discovering the tomb of the ancient mystical being, Nabu. The orphaned boy was trained by Nabu in the arts of magic. After DC's Crisis on Infinite Earths storyline, several different versions of Doctor Fate were introduced, but were relatively short-lived. Doctor Fate's appearances in other media and comics set outside the continuity of the DC Universe (for instance, in the DC animated universe) tend to be of the original Golden Age Kent Nelson incarnation.

Like all members of the JSA, Kent retired in the 1940s but would occasionally return to action when necessary. When the JSA re-established itself early in the modern age of heroes, Doctor Fate was among the returning members. Though he had become increasingly erratic and withdrew from humanity, he was still committed to protecting Earth against supernatural menaces. During this time Nelson also went through a period where, in order to become Doctor Fate, he had to fuse with his wife Inza. Kent later became the sole wearer of the Helm and joined the re-constituted Justice League. His magics to keep him and his wife young soon failed. This resulted in the pair aging and passing away in a short span of time.

During the Blackest Night event, Kent was reanimated as a member of the Black Lantern Corps.

Other faces of Doctor Fate

External links

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