Alter Ego: Count Werner Vertigo
Occupation: Professional Criminal
Marital Status: Single
Known Relatives: None
Group Affiliation: None
Base of Operations: Star City
First Appearance: WORLD'S FINEST COMICS #251
Height: 5'11" Weight: 189 lbs.
Eyes: Blue Hair: Blond
Last descendant of the royal family that ruled the small Balkan country of Vlatava until the end of World War II when it was absorbed into the Soviet Union, Count Vertigo first appeared upon the scene in Star City, attempting to steal back the family jewels his parents had sold when they escaped to England after the war [I'm getting a bit of a Pale Fire vibe from this history. I'm not sure it's reliable.]. Victim of a hereditary inner ear defect that affected his sense of balance, Vertigo had a small electronic device implanted in his right temple that enabled him to compensate for his problem. By making certain adjustments in the device, Vertigo learned he was able to affect other people's balance as well, distorting their perceptions so that they literally [Drink!] could not tell up from down.
Thus armed, Vertigo crossed the path of the Black Canary (see Black Canary II), who thwarted Vertigo's crime spree by using her ultrasonic cry to overload his implant.
Vertigo has escaped from prison several times since then, attempting to gain revenge on the Canary and her boyfriend, the Green Arrow (see Green Arrow II). At one point Vertigo even returned to Vlatava and threatened the Soviet Union with nuclear blackmail unless they freed his tiny country. Defeated again by the Green Arrow, Vertigo was turned over to the Soviets for punishment. Instead they sent him back to he U.S. to assassinate a prominent industrialist. Once more outwitted by Green Arrow, Vertigo was turned over to the authorities and is currently serving a long prison term.
POWERS & WEAPONS
An Olympic-level athlete [There's a higher than average penchant for crime amongst people who could compete in the Olympics!] but average hand-to-hand combatant, Count Vertigo prefers to rely on the electronic mechanism implanted in his right temple. Designed to correct an inner ear defect, this mechanism can also be used to distort the perceptions of those around Vertigo, completely destroying their sense of balance [Wasn't this already covered?]. This implant, combined with magnetic boots that enable Vertigo to walk on ceilings and walls, makes Vertigo the living embodiment of his name.
During his return to Vlatava, Vertigo supplemented his electronic mechanism with another device of Nazi origin that enabled him to turn his topsy-turvy illusions into reality, but it is not known at this writing if that device, which was short-circuited by Green Arrow, is still operable and still in Vertigo's possession.