Featured Columns

December 11, 2016

Character Spotlight: Doctor Alchemy

Tyrant of transmutation. Foe to the Flash. Master of the elements. Doctor Alchemy has been a foe of the Flash for most of his career. Who is Doctor Alchemy and how did he come to be? Not one but three people have held the title, who are they? Let’s find out!

Albert Desmond

Brilliant chemist, Albert Desmond, had a split personality, Albert was a law-abiding man while Mister Element was the criminal personality. Using Albert’s genius in chemistry, Mister Element would arm himself with bulletproof materials and a new element, Element which he used to fight the Flash.

The Flash would send Mister Element to jail where he’d learn of the existence of the Philosopher’s Stone, the ultimate goal in alchemical practice that could transform any material into another. Upon finding it for himself, Mister Element would change his name to Doctor Alchemy and begin transmutation as part of his new modus operandi.

Eventually, Albert would gain control to quit crime and hide the Stone from his other personality. His plan almost works until Alchemy’s contingent plan of a Stone made “Astral twin” Alvin to find the stone and become Doctor Alchemy. Albert would fight with Alvin and in the process Albert would destroy Alvin and able to get himself locked away so his criminal self could not escape.


Curtis Engstrom

When Albert Desmond was locked up, the Philospher’s Stone was taken to S.T.A.R. Labs for study. Dr. Curtis Engstrom was advising on the project then stole the stone to become the new Doctor Alchemy. He’d continue doing this until eventually his own costume and the Stone were stolen by his former cellmate.


Alexander Petrov

Wanting to get promoted in the Keystone City Police Department, Alexander Petrov would still the old weapons of Mister Element to kill his superiors so he could move up at work. He’d continuing killing police officers so he could solve the crimes and blame them on Captain Cold. Don’t do this, Captain Cold figured out who was framing him and frozen Petrov to death.

There you have it! Doctor Alchemy has been worn several times and maybe a new one shall rise. There’s already one on the small screen of The Flash television series. Where will he appear next? Maybe in The Flash film? Who knows? See you next time!

Suggested Reading
Showcase #13
Showcase #14
The Flash Vol. 2, #71
The Flash Vol. 2, #202

Dr. Bustos


One Comment

  1. klue

    So the one on the show is a completely different guy? Wow! Well thanks for shedding some light on who he was since I didn’t check out DC comics back in the day lol

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