Sandman (William Baker, a.k.a. Flint Marko) is a fictional character who appears in comic book published by Marvel Comics. A shapeshifter endowed through an accident with the ability to turn himself into sand, he eventually reformed, and became an ally of Spider-Man. The character has been adapted into various other media incarnations of Spider-Man, including animated cartoons and the 2007 film Spider-Man 3, in which he is played by Academy Award nominated actor Thomas Haden Church.
In 2009, Sandman was ranked as IGN's 72nd Greatest Comic Book Villain of All Time.
The Sandman first appeared in The Amazing Spider-Man #4 (Sept. 1963), created by writer Stan Lee and artist Steve Ditko as an adversary of Spider-Man. The character returned in The Amazing Spider-Man #18 and #19, and was soon depicted in other comics, such as battling the Hulk and the Fantastic Four. The Sandman was later an ally of Spider-Man, as well as a member of the Avengers and Silver Sable's "Wild Pack" team of mercenaries.
William Baker was born in Queens, New York. At three years old his father abandoned him and his mother, a cleaning lady. In these early years she took her son to Coney Island beach. He lost himself happily in sand sculptures, a craft he would use in secondary school under the encouragement of his teacher (and first crush), Miss Flint.
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