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- "Five thousand years ago, Kahndaq was a melting pot of cultures, wealth, power, and magic. Yet, most of us have nothing, except for the chains around our necks. Kahndaq needed a hero, instead, they got me. I did what needed to be done and they imprisoned me for it. Now, five thousand years later, I'm free and I give you my word... No one will ever stop me again."
- ―Black Adam[src]
However, after his family was murdered by criminals, Adam unintentionally released the Seven Deadly Enemies of Man from their prison, killing countless millions. Due to this terrible act, he was imprisoned by Shazam in the confines of the Earth for five thousand years, until his release and attempt to liberate Kahndaq once again.
Becoming a Champion
- "Seven thrones of seven wizards. But long ago, we chose a champion and we chose recklessly. He used his power for revenge, releasing the Seven Deadly Sins into your world. Millions of lives were lost. Entire civilizations erased from existence. That is why I vowed never to pass on my magic until I find one truly good person. Strong in spirit, pure in heart."
- ―Shazam to Billy Batson[src]
But while he was off fighting someone else's war, his family was murdered by criminals. This turn of events led Teth-Adam to protect Kahndaq by any means necessary, resorting to brutality and ruthlessness, so he unintentionally unleashed the Seven Deadly Enemies of Man upon the criminals who killed his family and the people of Kahndaq, thereby killing millions.
In response to such harsh acts, the Wizard plagued him with the name "Black Adam", before leaving him entombed ever since. It was only until the modern era that the Wizard Shazam would choose a new champion - Billy Batson.
- "They call themselves the Justice Society. An organization that believes in fighting for truth and justice. Well, I'm going to teach them that the only beliefs I fight for are mine. Welcome to truth, justice, and the Black Adam way."
- ―Black Adam[src]
Initially, Teth-Adam was heroic and courageous, which led to him being chosen as the first champion of the wizard Shazam and his brothers. However, after his family was murdered by criminals, he became brutal and ruthless, leading to him misusing his powers and accidentally releasing the Seven Deadly Sins upon the murderers of his family and the people of Kahndaq, killing millions.
Powers and abilities
- Divine empowerment: Teth-Adam was chosen by Shazam as champion. When he misused the powers given to him, he accidentally released the Seven Deadly Sins upon the world.
- Longevity: Teth-Adam has been alive for five millennia.
- Electrokinesis: Teth-Adam has the ability to generate bolts of electricity.
- Flight: Teth-Adam is cable of flight and flying at supersonic speeds.
- Black Adam's suit: When empowered as Black Adam, Teth-Adam wears a black bodysuit, with a lightning bolt on his chest. It also has a black cape with a hood and a gold trim.
- In the comics, Teth-Adam had the stamina of Shu (god of air and supporter of the sky), the strength of Hershef (Harsaphes, the Egyptian Hercules), the power of Amon, (the king of the gods), the wisdom of Zehuti (Thoth, god of wisdom), the speed of Anpu (Anubis, conductor of the dead) and the courage of Menthu (Mont, god of war).
- The name Teth-Adam is a Hebrew nickname interpreted as subhuman, which is used to describe someone who is inhumane. In the comics, this name was given to him to further indicate his evil, corrupted nature.
Behind the scenes
- In 2005, New Line Cinema had been pushing the idea of a Billy Batson and the Legend of Shazam! live-action feature film, with Peter Segal as director and Michael Uslan as a producer. Actor and former wrestler Dwayne "The Rock" Johnson had agreed to appear in the film as Black Adam, but the project was ultimately abandoned. Nine years later, Johnson signed on to play Black Adam in the 2019 film Shazam!. However, in January 2017, it was announced that Black Adam would appear in his solo film instead, which would tell his chronicles.
- Black Adam was originally going to appear in Shazam! and The Suicide Squad as the main villain.