|1st appearance:||Swamp Thing, Vol. 1 #2|
Cranius is a fictional mutated experiment featured in comic books published by DC Comics. He is considered part of DC's Pre-Crisis Earth-One continuity, though his existence and background have been preserved in the rebooted internal reality which existed following the 1985-86 maxi-series Crisis on Infinite Earths. The character first appeared in Swamp Thing, Volume 1 #2 in January, 1973.
Cranius, the Living Brain, was literally a synthetically generated head resting a top a hand, which it used for locomotion. It was but one of many such scientific oddities created in a castle laboratory by the insane scientist Anton Arcane. Cranius was the leader of Arcane's race of monstrous servants, which he dubbed Un-Men. Unlike other Un-Men, Cranius was more than just a mindless brute. In addition to a genius-level intellect, Cranius could also communicate telepathically with others and always maintained a telepathic link with the other Un-Men.
Many years ago, Anton Arcane learned of the existence of a monstrous creature from the United States known as the Swamp Thing. He sent his Un-Men to capture the creature and Cranius coordinated the attack against and succeeded in subduing him for transport back to Arcane's castle laboratory in the Balkans. 
A short time later, Cranius and the others heeded the telepathic beckoning of Anton Arcane as his body lied broken and near death on the cliffs below his castle after a battle with the Swamp Thing. Tapping into Arcane's consciousness, he followed his instruction and brought his body to a new laboratory, where he then supplanted the man's psyche into a synthetic body. The resurrected Anton Arcane led the Un-Men back to the United States to confront the Swamp Thing a second time. Though Cranius was present, he did not actively participate in the following conflict between Anton Arcane and the Swamp Thing. The ghost of a woman named Auntie Elsbeth Bellum called forth the ghosts of slaves that had died in the area to drive the Un-Men off. 
- Telepathy: Cranius possesses the ability to transmit and receive mental impressions from others. This ability seems to be limited to communicating, and to some extent, controlling the other Un-Men, but may extend to normal human beings as well.
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This article relates to characters featured in and pertaining to the Swamp Thing television and film franchise. Some pages may redirect to a disambuguation page, which will provide a list of different versions of each character. This template will categorize articles that include it into the Swamp Thing Characters category.