Earth's Mightiest Annotations
by Sean McQuaid
Supplemental: Minions of Dominus

BUTTE, CACTUS and GILA were all artificial beings created by Dominus to act
as its guardians and enforcers on Earth. They were led by SUNSTROKE, a
superhuman Earthling recruited into Dominus's service. Defeated in their
first clash with the western Avengers, Sunstroke and his troops battled
the Avengers a second time after Dominus had created dozens of duplicates
of Butte, Cactus and Gila, forming a small army of super-beings. When
the Avengers overcame these foes and defeated Dominus itself, Sunstroke
escaped but his troops were caught in the destruction of Dominus's
headquarters and presumed dead; however, at least one incarnation of Cactus
survived to become a resident of the prison for superhumans known as the
Vault, which has since been shut down after multiple mass escapes. The
current whereabouts and activities of Sunstroke and the surviving Cactus are
unknown. No surviving incarnations of Butte or Gila have appeared since the
defeat of Dominus. Sunstroke, Butte, Cactus and Gila all first appeared in
West Coast Avengers [v2] # 17, and all but Cactus were last seen in West
Coast Avengers [v2] # 24. A captive Cactus turned up at the Vault in
Avengers Spotlight # 26, and was included in a retrospective composite
illustration of the Avengers' foes in Avengers [v3] # 10.

     Sunstroke has the power to absorb, store and manipulate solar
energy for purposes such as heat projection, flame projection and blinding
illumination. He can also fly by using the glider wings of his costume to
ride thermal updrafts. Butte, created from inanimate rock and endowed with
a female sense of identity, was superhumanly strong and as durable as solid
granite; only complete demolition of her form could render her fully inert.
Gila was an oversized, super-strong gila monster that could speak, walk
upright, and use its tail as a striking weapon; like normal gila monsters,
it relied primarily on its sense of smell to interpret its surroundings.
Cactus, as its name suggests, is a walking, talking cactus plant with a
roughly humanoid form and human-like intelligence. Cactus can use its spines
as offensive weapons by propelling them at opponents, and can also
regenerate severed or damaged portions of its body with incredible speed.