This week’s character spotlight focuses on the Kevin Bacon of the Silverline Universe, although “six degrees” are more than necessary to connect Demon (Dr. Keith Grayson) to each of the major heroes (and villains) in the Silverline Universe– and beyond! In fact, Demon is even destined to encounter the newest incarnation of Cat and Mouse in their next issue! The Kickstarter for Cat & Mouse #2 is live NOW . . . why don’t you go check it out now! It’s ok . . . we’ll wait for you while you take a peek and hopefully become a backer! https://tinyurl.com/CnM-2-KickStart
From the inception of the Silverline Universe, Demon has been the most prolific character, appearing across a multitude of titles and issues. Beginning with his first-page appearance in the original Cat & Mouse series, continuing through his own Demon’s Tails mini-series, making a surprise multi-page appearance in the second SilverStorm mini-series, inadvertently providing the base of operations for the combined forces of characters from both Silverline and Beta 3 Comics (which was the first in-cannon synergy of these two universes!), and, now making his presence known in the aforementioned forthcoming Cat & Mouse Volume 2, Demon’s connections are varied and far-reaching!
Over the course of his many appearances, Dr. Keith (Demon) Grayson has worn many hats. A veterinarian. A small-business owner. A hopeless romantic. A god-figure for a murderous cult (what?). A brother. A long-term goldfish sitter. A laboratory-accident survivor. A reluctant adventurer. An avid TV watcher. A son. A Led Zeppelin fan. An emergency surgeon. A confidant. An aficionado of fedoras and trench coats. A man who lives out his days in seclusion in a mutated body distinguished by giant crests on his head and his body encased in brown fur with not one . . . not two . . . but THREE tails. Did we mention that all three tails can regenerate should they become severed from his body???? This revelation was equally surprising to Dr. Grayson, after finding himself on the wrong end of a katana blade (double what??)
Dr. Keith Grayson’s introduction to the first duo who utilized the monikers of “Cat” and “Mouse” occurred after Mouse (Mandy Paige) was shot in the back and Cat (Jerry O’Neil) was seeking immediate medical assistance. Seeing only the word “clinic” outside Dr. Grayson’s establishment, Cat carried Mouse into the building . . . the veterinary clinic . . . and demanded that the doctor extract the bullet and stabilize the patient. After an initial quarrel about the medical legality and integrity of the demand, Dr. Grayson extracted the bullet, nursed the patient back to health, and eventually became Mandy’s romantic partner and confidant. However, before the spark of romantic interest turned into a full flame of relationship, Demon, attempting to protect Cat and Mouse’s secret identities, faced their former trainer and master – Kunoichi – in battle. It was at her hand that he lost his tails . . . but that made wearing pants on dates that much easier!
Demon’s attempts to track, and take down religious cult worshipers from the Cult of Abaddon began in the Cat & Mouse series and concluded in Demon’s own mini-series, Demon’s Tails (available for purchase in both digital and print form HERE – https://indyplanet.com/demons-tails and soon to be available in color!). In this series, Demon was pursued by, and later partnered with, the Chicago Champion (better known in the Silverline Universe simply as “Champion”). The two battled and took down the Church of Abaddon, its evil leader (who had undergone a physical metamorphosis himself), and rescued Demon’s sister Cheryl from being a human sacrifice.
Demon has also encountered Silverline’s most “in-universe” celebrated heroes – Tempest and Silver Dollar, who had, previously, saved the United Nations from the tyrannical attack by Dr. Fear and his clones. In this quick, coincidental, almost accidental meeting, Tempest and Silver Dollar were tracking a duo of deadly ne’er-do-well’s, code-named Skull and Crossbones. Demon, knowing Kunoichi’s penchant for training male-female duos with distinctive yet complementary names, directed the heroes to her dojo to obtain leads.
Many, many months later, while watching TV during the day, Demon received a phone call from his employee – Nancy – who works as a nurse in his clinic. She told him to quickly change the channel. Live news coverage was showcasing a battle in downtown New Orleans. Demon immediately recognized Tempest and Silver Dollar . . . but was shaken to the core when he saw two masked individuals in the brawl as well. He sped from his apartment to the battle scene; the duo he thought he may have seen on TV was not them at all, but he had deduced (due to knowledge gained during his goldfish babysitting the night before), that there was a direct link between this duo and some long lost friends of his. Along with Tempest, Silver Dollar, and Champion, Sniper and Rook (covert government operatives working under the command of General Davis Jefferson) joined Demon at his clinic that night and the group – which would strengthen to become more a team – and the collection of heroes began their globe-spanning adventure to save the planet from evil and tyranny.
At the end of that adventure, Demon’s whereabouts had become unknown except to his closest confidants (and the watchful eye of the United States government). Demon has remained, literally, in the shadows until his very unexpected, yet quite welcomed, upcoming reappearance in New Orleans (Cat & Mouse #2, vol 2).
Created and brought to life by Roland Mann, Demon truly has been the lynchpin of the Silverline Universe and Demon has been illustrated by some of the most impressive artists in the industry. Mitch Byrd penciled Demon’s many appearances in the first Cat & Mouse volume, Paul Pelletier provided his artistic talents as penciller on the Demon’s Tails mini-series, Bill Maus is currently illustrating the globe-spanning adventure featuring Demon in the Beta 3 Comics / Silverline crossover series, and Demon’s return to Silverline in Cat & Mouse Volume 2 #2, now on Kickstarter as mentioned above, features Dean Zachary and Alex Gallimore as series pencillers. Steven Butler, who had served as Silverline Art Director, penciled and inked some of the most definitive illustrations of Demon on two Cat & Mouse covers – issues 3 and 15.
Whether you are being newly introduced to Demon, or are an old fan looking forward to his long-awaited return, the adventures that seem to follow him are wonderfully written and illustrated. Be sure to check out all of his past appearances so you’ll be up to date when Cat & Mouse Volume 2 #2 becomes available!