Markarian 231 won't win any galactic beauty contests. Seen through the Hubble Space Telescope, it's a bit lopsided and dull. But boy, what a personality. This galaxy near the tail of the Big Dipper is, at a distance of 581 million light-years, the closest that contains a quasar—an ultraluminous region powered by the ravenous appetite of a single, giant black hole.