“Shazam,” as many comics fans know, is an acronym. Each letter represents a deity or otherwise extraordinary being from whom Shazam and his allies, including Shazam Jr., draw their power. Interestingly, some of their villains also adopt acronyms of their patrons for names. There’s the pre-“Crisis on Infinite Earths” version of Ibac, for instance, whose dastardly traits come from such fear-worthy beings as Ivan the Terrible and Caligula (represented by the “I” and “C” in Ibac’s name, respectively). Then there’s Sabbac, whose patrons are almost exclusively demons or versions of the Devil: Satan, who provides him with super-strength; Aym, who makes him invulnerable, Belial, who bestows him with evil expertise; Beezlebub, who’s behind his pyrokinesis; Asmodeus, who makes him brave; and Craeteis, who allows him to levitate.
While readers of 2006’s “Superman/Shazam: First Thunder” might easily assume Sabbac is a Captain Marvel villain, that’s not the case. What separates Sabbac from, say, Ibac, is that he begins as a Captain Marvel Jr. villain, first appearing in 1943’s “Captain Marvel, Jr.” #4. This Sabbac is Timothy Karnes, who’s been the most consistent thorn in Freddy’s side. Other Sabbacs include Ishmael Gregor, a mobster who kills Timothy to acquire his powers, and Bryer, opulent father of several school bullies, who’s unwillingly taken over by the Seven Deadly Sins rather than the aforementioned demons.