- "Malefic, you can bring peace to Mars for the first time in hundreds of years. We can start anew. You were never meant to be the pariah, Malefic. You were meant to be the promise."
- "Thank you, my brother. I will strive to make you proud. And to end what I helped start."
- —J'onn on Malefic's true destiny.[src]
When they were children, Malefic and his older brother J'onn played together with some other kids, but Mal was unable to connect to the Martian hive-mind, after an outburst, their father, M'yrnn decided he was a danger and locked him away, he grew older and resentful and eventually sided with the White Martians. M'yrnn was devastated and J'onn erased Malefic from both of their memories.
Martian Civil War
During the Martian Civil War, Malefic betrayed the Green Martians by inflicting H'ronmeer's curse, Fa'ra'too'rik, upon them, which caused severe pain to any brothers who fought each other, due to his traitorous actions, Malefic was placed in the Phantom Zone. Either during the Martian Civil War or inside the Phantom Zone, he met Midnight.
Arrival on Earth
Sometime after Supergirl's war against Lex Luthor concluded, the extra-dimensional being Mar Novu, brought Malefic to Earth. He then vowed to get revenge on his brother, J'onn J'onzz. However, this was later proven to be a test for J'onn to prep him for the coming crisis.
War against his brother
At some point after his arrival on earth, he disguised himself as a little girl and during this time, he created a phantom zone projector to release Midnight. After Midnight's defeat at the hands of Supergirl and J'onn, Malefic confronted him in his office and then he told him that they were brothers, but J'onn didn't believe him, suggesting that his memories of Malefic were erased from his mind.
After attempting to murder multiple people as part of his revenge against his brother, he sets his sights on Kelly Olsen when he discovers she can see his true form despite his shape-shifting. During another one of his conflicts against the DEO and his brother, he is caught by the Phantom Zone Projector and transported away. He is relieved to discover he is not back in the Phantom Zone however is discouraged when he realizes he is a prisoner of Lena Luthor.
Prisoner of Lena Luthor and redemption
She holds him captive to study Q-Waves. While trapped inside, he comes face-to-face with his brother. Where J'onn apologizes to him, and they both agreed to a mind meld in order to determine each other's true intent. After realizing the mistake he has made, he is no longer angry with his brother. After escaping Malefic is eventually held captive by the DEO again. There he confined to his brother what has happened, and how Lena helped him captive, admitting she was never violent, and her only purpose was creating peace, even if she had to force it on everyone. He agreed to help, and using his own personal Kinetic energy against Lena's machine, he was able to stop her from mind-controlling the rest of the planet. After, J'onn re-introduced him to his ship to travel back to Mars and help M'gann M'orzz with the civil war. Unbeknownst to him, Mar Novu admitted he released Malefic from the Phantom Zone as a test for J'onn.
However Malefic is not without positive traits as he chose to forgive his brother, redeeming himself in the process.
Powers and abilities
- Green Martian physiology: Like all Green Martians, Malefic possesses several incredible powers. Uniquely to a Green Martian, his eye colors are red, but they glow green instead of red.
- Shapeshifting: Malefic is able to change his form at will, even on a cellular level, completely altering his physical appearance, allowing him to transform or mimic other people or animals and other creatures, regardless of the size or mass difference relative to Malefic's true form. He was able to transform into something as small as a little girl or buzzing fly as well as something as massive as a dinosaur.
- Superhuman strength: Malefic easily surpassed Supergirl with his own super strength in T-Rex's disguise tossing around Kara and perforating her cape with extreme ease.
- Superhuman durability: Malefic easily endured Supergirl's punches (but likely was holding back because she thought it is a normal dinosaur) and freeze breath.
- Density-shifting/Intangibility: As a Green Martian, Malefic is able to move through solid objects (such as walls and doors).
- Inception: Malefic has the ability to mind control individuals to do things they wouldn't normally do. This ability was taken from him in the Phantom Zone, but he later tricked Kelly Olsen into using Q-waves on him, which reset his brain and restored this power.
- Bilingual: As a native Martian, Malefic speaks his mother tongue fluently in addition to English.
- Fire: Like all Martians, if Malefic is exposed to fire (or even Kryptonian heat vision) while transformed, it will cause him to partially revert to his true appearance, which may be used as a means to reveal him as an impostor.
- Limited replication: Malefic lost most of his telepathic capabilities when he was in the Phantom Zone; thus his ability to learn about people he impersonates has been extremely diminished, severely limiting the effectiveness of his shape-shifting abilities, allowing someone who knows that person well enough to tell that he's a fraud.
- Fa'ra'too'rik: As explained by J'onn, long ago on Mars, two brothers, Phobos and Deimos, had a hatred for one another that was the reason for the Green and White Martians' split. To keep this from ever happening again, a curse was placed upon the Green Martians, known among them as Fa'ra'too'rik. It's the punishment for brother attacking brother, and causes great pain to both parties involved, as seen when J'onn and Malefic fought each other.
- Lack of hive mind: Malefic lacks the natural Martian ability to connect to the Martian collective; instead, he's able to affect it and hurt those around him.
- Malefic is the only known Martian that cannot connect to the Martian collective.
- Everyone found out Malefic was never sent back to the Phantom Zone, instead Lena Luthor held him captive to study Q-Waves after tampering with the machine.
- J'onn lends him his ship to travel back to Mars, and help M'gann M'orzz with the civil war.
- Mar Novu revealed he released Malefic from the Phantom Zone as a test for his brother to complete.
Behind the scenes
- In the comics, Ma'alefa'ak J'onzz a.k.a. Malefic is the twin brother and arch-nemesis of the Martian Manhunter.