WANTED: Earth-Two's Most Dangerous Super-Villains
Name: Robert (Bobby) Horton
Residence: Keystone City
Occupation: Professional Criminal
First Appearance (Golden Age): Flash Comics #77(November 1946)
Robert Horton was born in the 1920's, the son of a prominent scientist. At the age of 12, Bobby sneaked into his father's laboratory, despite the paternal admonition to never do so alone as the work inside was dangerous. Carelessly pulling switches, the young Bobby ignites an impressive display of lightning but soon loses control of it. The lightning strikes his legs and he faints dead away, only to be found later unconscious by his father.
As he awakes, he learns he is unable to walk and remains bed-ridden for years, growing ever more bitter at his fate and blaming science, rather than his own disobedience, for his predicament. By 1946, Horton had grown to adulthood and over the months, began to have sensation in his legs, giving him hope of recover. One evening, his pent up frustrations pushed him to try to stand on his legs. To his astonishment, one step bounded him out of the room and into the next room. Over the days that followed, Horton experimented with his new mobility, discovered that he could leap incredible distances such as to the top of a several-story building and could project himself with considerable force. By the point, his father had passed on and left him a small estate. Not satisfied with his inheritance and vengeful over his lost youth, he resolved to take what he wanted and make science pay the price.
His first public appearance occurred at the Scientific Congress For World Future. Barging in to the opening ceremonies, he demanded to have first chance at the podium. Not waiting for permission, he identified himself as the Jumper and announced that the future was doomed, that he would lay waste to science labs around the nation. In attendance was the Flash as the purported guest of Jay Garrick and he rushed Horton at the podium. Good as his name, the Jumper crashed upward through a skylight and vanished. When Garrick raced outside to find him, he encounter the Jumper's gang and tangled with them until the Jumper came crashing back down, rendering the Flash insensate.
Later the Jumper explained his plan to his gang - to manipulate stock prices by targeting labs marking new technology for destruction. His first target was a new method of manufacturing copper, which caused stock in the old method to crash. When he destroyed the lab developing the new method, stock in the old method soared, enriching his men who had stocked up during the crash. The Flash patrolled aggressively but did not see the pattern in the Jumper's crimes. He resolved to try to lure The Jumper and his gang to his own lab, claiming a new sugar substitute. His ploy worked but again, the Jumper was too quick, setting the lab on fire and leaving the Flash unconscious among the flames. He managed to recover in time to summon help and extinguish the fires.
The next morning, Flash received a note from his stock broker suggesting to buy up sugar commodities as the news of his lab fire would cause a surge in stock prices. Realizing this must be the Jumper's angle, he tracked down recent heavy traders in copper and sugar stock. Finding Horton's address, he arrived to find a gang member, who he shook down for the Jumper's whereabouts - E-J Electrical Laboratories. His sudden arrival startled the Jumper, who inadvertently triggered the lab's equipment and sent electrical bolts into his legs, nullifying his powers. He and his men were then easy pickings for the Flash, who carted them off to jail (Flash Comics #77).
Whether the Jumper every regained his powers or not as never been determined.
Powers and Abilities
As the Jumper, Robert Horton possessed enormous powerful legs that allow him to propel himself over considerable distances. While the full range of his powers are not known, 60-80 vertical feet seems a minimum estimate of his upper limit. He seemed invulnerable to impact injury, as falling from that height feet first was absorbed with no damage to himself.
Weaknesses and Limitations
Horton's abilities do not appear to impact other parts of his body and his strength of upper limb appears within normal human limits. While possessed of a certain criminal cunning, his mental clarity was confounded by his obsession with vengeance against science for the years of his youth he deemed wasted as an invalid.
No version of Robert Horton or the Jumper is known to exist in any timeline but Earth-Two.
Flash Comics #77
1st appearance and origin, vs. The Flash