|The Venture Bros. character|
Agent Kelley Clarkson |
Head of OSI |
Secret Agent (Former)
Office of Secret Intelligence
The Black Hearts
Guild of Calamitous Intent
The Sovereign (deceased)
Hunter is the definition of super spy, demonstrated in his first meeting with Brock where he immediately attacked the young agent on suspicion that he was sent to kill him.
He was a very harsh but effective teacher as his methods led to the former rookie agent Brock becoming the cool professional agent he is today. Hunter had a rule that he enlisted to the then-newcomer Brock which was "No women, no children. It's what separates us from the baddies."
Whenever Hunter went undercover he had a tendency to always disguise himself as a woman, foreshadowing his transition. Despite his sex reassignment surgery being part of his plan to infiltrate the Black Hearts, and despite its later reversal, Gathers is very vocal about still missing his "beautiful breasts" from his time as a woman.
Hunter's early history before the O.S.I. is unknown, but he has been a member of the O.S.I. for most of his adult life.
Partnership with Brock
Twenty-seven years ago, Hunter was lounging in his office until Brock Samson walked in asking if he was Colonel Gathers. Believing Brock to be an enemy, Hunter immediately attacked the young rookie agent, demanding to know who sent him. Hunter did not drop his guard, even stabbing Brock in the hand when the latter told him he was a rookie who wanted training. Taking some files on Brock, Hunter did a quick background check on him before burning them and telling Brock he is officially an agent of the O.S.I. Hunter proceeded to give Brock training and as the years went by his training paid off, with Brock becoming his partner in many missions.
Sexual Reassignment Surgery
At some point, Hunter went rogue and left the O.S.I. with forty million dollars and kidnapped a plastic surgeon from an unknown enemy. His actions led to the O.S.I. putting their resources into killing him. After leaving the O.S.I., he underwent sexual reassignment surgery and used her new operation to avoid being killed by other O.S.I. agents--specifically Brock Samson. Brock had been assigned to kill her but could not bring himself to carry out the act as Gathers had taught him everything he knew, serving as a surrogate father to him, and left her in peace--though not before peeking under the operating room blanket to verify that the sexual reassignment surgery had been completed.
Hunter later became a stripper and gave Brock information on Operation Rusty's Blanket. When Brock Samson was hunted down for failing to kill Dr. Venture and believed the O.S.I. wants him dead for disobeying orders, he turned to Gathers for help. Gathers gave Brock a car and a list of ex-O.S.I. agents that could help while he was on the lam. It was later revealed that Gathers (and secretly Molotov Cocktease) misled Brock into killing mercenaries that Brock believed were sent after him by the O.S.I., clearing the way for Gathers and Molotov to form an all-female assassin group called The Black Hearts without any competition.
Gathers was later seen in the offices of The Black Hearts' organization discussing matters, with a solo Brock Samson and an agent of S.P.H.I.N.X. separately trying to eavesdrop on the conversation when the ceiling collapsed and they fell on Molotov. Gathers was quickly confronted by Brock, whom she was reluctant to shoot, but Molotov was more than willing. Brock and Gathers were later shown tied up in a dark room where Brock complains about his situation while Gathers is calm about the incident, causing Brock to berate her for. Brock then went on to list Hunter's actions while the latter secretly cut herself and Brock free. While continuing his rant, Brock slowly realized that Hunter's defection from the O.S.I. was just a ruse for her to infiltrate Molotov's budding organization. When Brock told Hunter that he finally got everything, the lights turned on and Gathers (now once more dressed masculinely) in a S.P.H.I.N.X. uniform pointed to his groin and exclaimed to Brock "You don't know dick!"
Leader of S.P.H.I.N.X.
Hunter revived the old organization of S.P.H.I.N.X. with the sole purpose of fighting against the bad guys.
In Operation P.R.O.M., Gathers and his men went through many events dealing with the villain Monstroso as well being captured by the O.S.I., all of which lead to a confrontation with General Treister. After Treister suffered a heart attack, he revealed to Gathers that he is "a Hulk", citing as evidence his exposure to gamma rays from his cancer therapy sessions and his weekly destruction of his own office, concluding (to Gathers' horror) that he is dying of "pee-pee cancer". Once outside the office Gathers was informed by Cardholder and Doe that they were responsible for destroying the office as well as convincing Treister he was a Hulk due to his blind rants on a frequent basis. Gathers initially acknowledged that he misjudged the two, as that was fairly noble of them, until they revealed that the board of the O.S.I. will hand power over to them--which caused Hunter to realize they were Guild moles. Before he could take action, he and Sky Pilot were captured. Taken to the secret bridge of the O.S.I. base, Hunter was met by Treister flying the headquarters before handing it to Hunter, who attempted to explain the situation to him. Treister, however, revealed he was already aware of the agents' treachery, having implanted a mole in S.P.H.I.N.X. as well as planting a decoy Monstroso to capture the two when they try to kill the fake. Treister then admitted his cancer was not curable, and because of that he was no longer fit to run O.S.I. To Gathers' complete and utter shock, Treister announced his retirement and handed full control of the O.S.I. to Gathers. When Gathers asked what Treister intended to do, the latter stated since nothing on Earth could heal his cancer he intended to use the next best thing: alien technology. The former General then launches himself into space as Gathers watched in shock.
Leader of the O.S.I.
In What Color is Your Cleansuit?, Henchman 21 awakened in S.P.H.I.N.X. headquarters to find himself surrounded by armed O.S.I. agents led by Gathers (now dressed in a general outfit) who questioned the confused formed henchman about his identity, his attire, and the events that transpired on the previous night. With full control of the O.S.I. now at his command, Gathers and all of his S.P.H.I.N.X. agents return to the O.S.I., with the remaining S.P.H.I.N.X. technology and headquarters being left to Henchman 21 because the rent was already prepaid for the remainder of the year.
In S.P.H.I.N.X. Rising, Henchman 21 inadvertently interfered in O.S.I. business, first while trying to investigate the criminal group Long Division and then by accidentally recruiting former S.P.H.I.N.X. agents to his new organization. Gathers consequently had S.P.H.I.N.X. headquarters destroyed and the surviving original agents killed. Henchman 21, who was on the O.S.I. headquarters at the time, was spared.
Purging the O.S.I. of double agents
During O.S.I. Love You, Gathers had his men track down Monstroso and Molotov Cocktease, proceeding to capture them both and bring them in for questioning. During Monstroso's interrogation, the O.S.I. learned of the Council of 13 for the first time, causing the latter to "disappear" while Molotov Cocktease escaped and assassinated agents. Gathers sent his men to capture her, placing the Venture family in a stable room to keep them safe and prevent them from interfering. Hank Venture disobeyed and confronted Molotov, who easily dispatched him and stole his strength suit, hastening her escape.
When Brock ultimately defeated Molotov and prepared to throw her into one of the ship engines, Gathers stopped him by revealing that the agents Molotov killed were double agents he had assigned Molotov to kill. He further explained that as a mercenary Molotov would work for anyone and would be loyal to the O.S.I. as long as they paid well.
After the Molotov incident, Gathers and the agents were interviewed by three Mister-level O.S.I. agents as part of an internal affairs investigation and warned that they will be monitored for further incidents. Upon the agents' departure, Gathers officially classified Molotov as dead and responded that he had "no idea" about Monstroso's whereabouts when asked by Brock. Two of the same O.S.I. Misters then walked in, prompting Gathers to ask why they came back. Quickly realizing that they were the real board members, Gathers dashed into the hallway after the imposters. The imposters were revealed to be The Investors, who were behind Monstroso's disappearance and had returned for information. The Investors left the headquarters by phasing through the floor and leaving only their hats behind, which Gathers found on the floor when he turned the corner.
Tracking down villains
In All This and Gargantua-2, Gathers and her men learned of the The Sovereign killing off the Council. The O.S.I. had just recently learned that The Guild of Calamitous Intent was run by a thirteen member council and were in the process of identifying and tracking down council members when several of those identified were reported dead while several other members went missing. Gathers was then contacted by Brock, who tried to inform him of The Investors but their connection was cut. Gathers was later visited by the missing Council members who agreed to reveal the location of The Sovereign in exchange for pardons. The O.S.I. located the Sovereign's secret hideout, though he was slain entirely by an accidental misfire by Headshot.
In Red Means Stop, the Council of 13 contacted Hunter Gathers and O.S.I. for help catching the new Blue Morpho, whom was conducting unsanctioned murders of Guild villains. The O.S.I. and the Guild engaged a stake-out attempt at VenTech Tower with Red Death as bait. Hunter Gathers pretended to be Dr. Venture (albeit mockingly), but the killer never showed up. The infiltrators played a game of volleyball in the pool afterwards.
In The Inamorata Consequence, Hunter Gathers and other O.S.I. representatives met with the Guild at the Treaty of Tolerance Summit II to resign the old treaty binding both parties to the terms of organized aggression. Treaty negotiations broke down into petty bickering, and it is Dr. Thaddeus Venture of all people that shamed the arguers and gets the discussion back on track. Ultimately, the treaty is resigned. In addition, Hunter Gathers learned from new O.S.I. recruit Dermott Fictel that Agent Kimberly McManus is holding a secret love affair with Guild Stranger S-464. Gathers praised Fictel and told him he'll go far in the O.S.I. if he keeps this up. However, Gathers failed to realize the significance of the "peepee belt" of S-464, as he mistook it as literal urine instead of the P.P. symbolizing the Peril Partnership.
In the Unicorn in Captivity, Hunter Gathers recognizes Dr. Venture's invention of the teleporters represents a "game changer" and therefore a threat to the world order. Hunter and Brock Sampson attempts to get Venture to trash the teleporters, but Venture resists. Therefore, they secretly employed a highly realistic virtual reality simulation on Venture to fool him into believing he can receive wealth and women in return for giving up the teleporters and becoming one of the Illuminati. The tactic worked, but the teleporters were stolen and fell into the hands of the Monarch and Henchman 21.
In The Terminus Mandate, Gathers was contacted by his old enemy, Phantom Limb, for a final arching before Phantom Limb retires from active, individual villainy in order to retain his seat on the Guild Council. Gathers jokingly suggested they resolve things with a literal penis-measuring competition, though Limb took him up on it. Limb later claimed victory at the following Council meeting and said he surpassed Gathers by a full inch, though Limb's word should not be taken as gospel since he still (falsely) claims to be the victor of the Battle of Cremation Creek.
Relationships With Other Characters
Hunter was Brock's first contact at the O.S.I. and his training was largely responsible for turning Brock into the professional and efficient field agent he is today. Having been raised by a single mother, Brock saw Hunter as the closest thing to a father he had in his life. Brock was shown taking Hunter's teachings to heart and followed the one most important rule Hunter taught him, which was "No women, no children. It's what separates us from the baddies." Indeed it was this rule that saved his/her life when Brock was assigned to kill Gathers: he was shown to be conflicted at the thought of killing the (wo)man who taught him everything he knew, and consequently spared Gathers.
In the past, Shore Leave taunted Hunter and Brock about their shared belief of The Guild of Calamitous Intent's existence and found no evidence whenever they went undercover to find information to support their theory. In return, Hunter was shown annoyed with Shore leave's taunts and arrogance.
Despite their rocky past, Hunter had enough faith to allow Shore Leave to join the newly revived organization of S.P.H.I.N.X. and they are shown to get along. Now that Gathers has command of the O.S.I., he has brought Shore Leave back to the agency with him.
Phantom Limb and Hunter Gathers are apparently old enemies, and this animosity seems to go beyond the professional into the personal, as demonstrated with Phantom Limb's final arching with Gathers in The Terminus Mandate as a literal penis-measuring competition. This enmity may contribute to breakdowns on the rare occasions the Guild and O.S.I. have cooperated on joint missions. Still, Phantom Limb's rivalry with Gathers does not seem to be entirely hateful, as Phantom Limb had Gathers' phone number on hand to negotiate their final arching and discussed the reasons behind his final arching in a semi-friendly manner with Gathers.
- The Invisible Hand of Fate (flashback)
- The Family That Slays Together, Stays Together Part I
- The Family That Slays Together, Stays Together Part II
- Blood of the Father, Heart of Steel
- Pinstripes and Poltergeists
- Pomp and Circuitry
- Any Which Way But Zeus
- The Silent Partners
- Operation P.R.O.M.
- Hunter is modeled after Hunter S. Thompson in both appearance and mannerisms.
- He is a collector of antique pipes.