Captain Britain (Brian Braddock) is a fictional character appearing in American comic books published by Marvel Comics. He first appeared in Captain Britain Weekly #1 (October 1976), the beginning of a serial best-remembered for runs by writer Chris Claremont, artist Alan Davis, and writer Alan Moore.
|First appearance||Captain Britain #1 (October 1976)|
|Alter ego||Brian Braddock|
|Team affiliations||Secret Avengers|
Captain Britain Corps
Knights of Pendragon
Champions of Europe
|Abilities||Superhuman strength, speed, endurance, agility, durability, reflexes, and senses|
The character was initially intended exclusively for the British comics market. Endowed with extraordinary powers by the legendary magician Merlyn and his daughter Roma, Captain Britain is assigned to uphold the laws of Britain.
Captain Britain originally appeared in the first issue of Captain Britain Weekly (cover-dated the week ending October 13, 1976), an anthology comic published exclusively in the United Kingdom by the Marvel Comics imprint known as Marvel UK. The comic represented the first original content published by Marvel UK, who had previously only handled reprints of Marvel Comics' U.S. publications. However, the new content was still created by Marvel's American staff (the initial team being writer Chris Claremont, penciller Herb Trimpe, and inker Fred Kida) under the supervision of U.S. editor Larry Lieber, then shipped to the UK for publication. (In addition, the new 8-page Captain Britain installments in each issue of Captain Britain Weekly were supplemented by more reprinted material, featuring Nick Fury and the Fantastic Four).
The character's creators are unknown, though Trimpe has remarked that the visual design looks like the work of John Romita, Sr., who was designing many of Marvel's characters at the time.[verification needed]
The first two issues of the comic were also bundled with "free gifts", a cardboard Captain Britain mask in the first issue and a Captain Britain boomerang in the second, such novelties being a tradition with British comic book launches. Chris Claremont left the series after ten issues, midway through the "Doctor Synne" storyline, due to creative differences with the editor. Trimpe recalled that Claremont and his replacement, Gary Friedrich, while "miles apart in personality and approach to a story", were both flexible writers who allowed him considerable free rein in laying out and pacing the stories.
With sales slowly declining, Captain Britain went to black-and-white with issue #24 (March 23, 1977) and was cancelled entirely with issue #39 (July 6, 1977), though the Captain Britain serial was immediately transferred to Marvel UK's Spider-Man comic, which was then retitled Super Spider-Man & Captain Britain. In 1978 Chris Claremont and John Byrne introduced Captain Britain to an American audience for the first time with Marvel Team-Up #65-66. The Marvel Team-Up story was reprinted as the last six installments of the UK serial, ending with Super Spider-Man & Captain Britain #253. This marked the end of Captain Britain's exploits until March 1979, when Captain Britain appeared with the Black Knight in the "Otherworld Saga" which ran in Hulk Comic. These guest appearances were the first time Captain Britain was written and drawn by British creators.
The character was relaunched, in a redesigned costume, in the Marvel Superheroes anthology title, starting with issue #377 (September 1981). The relaunch was initially written by Dave Thorpe and illustrated by Alan Davis, who redesigned the costume at editor-in-chief Paul Neary's behest. Neary's chief concern was the original costume's lion chest emblem; though the emblem is a heraldic symbol, it is better known in the UK as a sign to denote the quality and freshness of eggs. Davis noted that his depiction of Brian Braddock was visually based on Garth, "an exaggerated Greek god, perfect in every way" and that:
I decided to base his costume on military uniforms. If you've ever seen the mounted guards outside Buckingham Place, you'll recognize the components. The white leggings and the tall boots with the flaps over the knees were easy. The headgear took a bit more time because I wanted it to look like a helmet rather than a mask. The stripes across his chest started as two crossed sashes and underwent numerous changes.
The political commentaries in Thorpe's stories ignited conflicts with the editors, leading to his being replaced by Alan Moore with Marvel Superheroes #387 (July 1982). Moore used Thorpe's stories as a springboard for the "Jaspers' Warp" storyline. Captain Britain appeared as one of the characters in Marvel US's 1982 Contest of Champions limited series, albeit wearing his already-discarded original costume.
After Marvel Superheroes #388 (August 1982), the series moved into a new monthly comic, The Daredevils. When The Daredevils was canceled after eleven issues, Captain Britain was continued in The Mighty World of Marvel volume 2 #7 (December 1983). After the run of Alan Moore, who left because of a dispute over unpaid invoices, the serial continued for a few more issues with different writers (Steve Craddock, Alan Davis, and Mike Collins) before moving to the new Captain Britain Monthly. Jamie Delano took over writing duties with the first issue (cover-dated January 1985) on the recommendation of Moore and with the agreement of Davis. However, Davis later said "Initially I gave plot ideas to Jamie [Delano] but I was never happy with the direction he wanted to take things so I took more and more control until I eventually took over as writer."
In the meantime, Captain Britain's long absence from American comics ended with a series of 1985 guest appearances, starting with Captain America #305-306. Following the cancellation of Captain Britain's solo series, Claremont and Davis created the one-shot special Excalibur: The Sword is Drawn (December 1987), which served to launch the American monthly Excalibur in 1988, featuring an eponymous team which included Captain Britain. Marvel UK incorporated Captain Britain as the main attraction of their own group series, Knights of Pendragon, which initially met with positive critical response and strong sales, but declined to the point of cancellation with issue #18.
A new series was then started in 2008, using the Secret Invasion crossover storyline as a launchpad. Captain Britain headlines this series, Captain Britain and MI: 13, written by Paul Cornell, which included some characters from New Excalibur, as well as members of MI: 13 who appeared in Cornell's Wisdom limited series.
Panini Comics bought Marvel UK and in 2006 renewed and broadened their license with Marvel which allows them to produce original comic stories for the British and European markets. This has included Captain Britain's first original appearance in UK comics in thirteen years, with a story that ran in Spectacular Spider-Man Adventures and Panini plan to have more in their new all-ages title Marvel Heroes.
Captain Britain appeared as a regular character in the 2010-2013 Secret Avengers series, from issue #22 (April 2012) through its final issue #37 (March 2013).
Beginning in November 2014, Captain Britain reappeared with the Avengers as a part of the Time Runs Out storyline.
Fictional character biographyEdit
Born and raised in the small town of Maldon, Essex and educated at Fettes College in Edinburgh, Brian was a shy and studious youth, living a relatively quiet life and spending a lot of time with his parents and siblings (older brother Jamie and fraternal twin Elizabeth). The family was an aristocratic one that was no longer rich enough to fraternise with their former academic peers, leaving Brian (too proud to fraternise with lower classes) a lonely child who immersed himself in the study of physics.
After the death of his parents (Sir James and Lady Elizabeth) in what seemed to be a laboratory accident, Brian takes a fellowship at Darkmoor nuclear research centre. When the facility is attacked by the technological criminal Joshua Stragg (alias "The Reaver"), Brian tries to find help by escaping on his motorcycle. Although he crashes his bike in a nearly fatal accident, Merlyn and his daughter, the Omniversal Guardian Roma, appear to the badly injured Brian. They give him the chance to be the superhero Captain Britain. He is offered a choice: the Amulet of Right or the Sword of Might. Considering himself to be no warrior and unsuited for the challenge, he rejects the Sword and chooses the Amulet. This choice transforms Brian Braddock into Captain Britain.
It is later revealed that Braddock is only one member of a much larger, inter-dimensional corps of mystical protectors. Every Earth in Marvel Comics' Multiverse has its own Captain Britain who is expected to defend that version of Britain and uphold its local laws. They are collectively called the Captain Britain Corps. Captain Britain protects "Earth-616" of the Marvel Universe. Later still, it was retconned that Brian's father, Sir James Braddock, was himself from Otherworld and a member of an earlier Corps; Merlyn had sent him to Earth-616 to take a carefully chosen mate and father a hero who would be far greater even than he (other comics still have the Braddock family as old and established: they've been in the Hellfire Club for generations and Braddock Manor is a "quarter millennium" old in its first appearance).
Early career as Captain BritainEdit
As his career as a superhero begins, Brian fights as the champion of Great Britain, often clashing with S.T.R.I.K.E. and Welsh anti-superhero police officer Dai Thomas, and would develop a rogues gallery including the assassin Slaymaster and the crime matriarch Vixen. He tried to keep his studies going and court fellow student Courtney Ross while also working as a superhero, and (as with other Marvel heroes) was viewed as a coward by others because he always vanished whenever trouble started.
During one episode, his siblings Betsy and Jamie became aware of his secret identity after he saved them from Dr. Synne, a villain terrorizing the land around Braddock Manor. Synne turned out to be the patsy of the sentient computer Mastermind, a device Brian's father had created; it was then Brian learned that his parents did not die in an accident but had been deliberately killed by the machine.
Brian's greatest achievement in this time was preventing a neo-Nazi takeover of the country with the aid of Captain America, Nick Fury, and S.T.R.I.K.E. commander Lance Hunter. He was responsible for both saving Prime Minister Jim Callaghan from the Red Skull and from stopping the Skull's germ bomb from killing London. The Nazis' first strike had actually happened during the battle with Mastermind, when the Red Skull took the plans for the computer and had Braddock Manor bombed to rubble (a later retcon said Mastermind had created a hologram that was bombed instead); Captain Britain was briefly believed dead and an empty coffin laid in state at St Paul's Cathedral.
As time goes on, Brian begins fighting more supernatural enemies rather than regular supervillains: this was part of Merlin's overall plan to mentally prepare him for Jaspers’ Warp.
Soon afterwards, Brian travels to America to study. By a strange twist of fate, he rooms with Peter Parker (the hero Spider-Man) at Empire State University. A brief misunderstanding caused Brian to battle Spider-Man, before the two of them were captured by the assassin Arcade. They then tackled various challenges in Murderworld, rescued Brian's love interest Courtney who was kidnapped and placed in a sealed cocoon with limited air, and became the first victims to survive Murderworld. Near the end of this stay, homesickness and stress saw him drink heavily. He stopped after, when drunk and embarrassed by a defeat, he beat a supervillain so badly she was put in hospital; ashamed, Brian paid for her hospital bills and therapy.
On a flight home from America, he came under mental attack by the demonic Necromon, causing Brian to leap out of the plane; he spent two years as a hermit on the Cornish coast, repairing his psyche. He was eventually called to Merlyn's service again, fighting alongside the Black Knight and the elf Jackdaw to defend Otherworld from Necromon. With his memories partially restored Brian and the Knight, allied with Vortigen the Proud Walker, battled Mordred the Evil. Both the Black Knight and Captain Britain were snatched out of time to join the Grandmaster's Contest of Champions, where Captain Britain fought against the Arabian Knight, but they were soon returned to resume their quest. At the entrance to Otherworld, Brian was slain by the spectral White Rider, and his corpse claimed by Mandrac: Nethergod Lord of the Slain and the Rider's master, though Merlyn and the Knight swiftly recovered it. Merlyn reunited Captain Britain's departed spirit with his body, resurrecting him. While the hero healed, Merlyn restored his remaining memories and informed him of the Nethergod's involvement with his early foes. Now recalling the location of King Arthur's body, the Black Knight, Captain Britain, and Jackdaw were sent to awaken the King. Succeeding in this quest, Arthur then sent Brian and Jackdaw magically away through the dimensions, stating Brian had a destiny to fulfill elsewhere. As a reward, he and Jackdaw were sent back to Earth.
With Necromon defeated, Merlyn merges the powers of the Amulet of Right and the Star Scepter into a uniform to be worn by Braddock. Captain Britain is sent with Jackdaw to Earth-238, a dictatorship run by the British National Party, whose rule was enforced by the Status Crew, where he works with the extra-dimensional Saturnyne to jump-start the reality's development.
Braddock witnesses both this Earth's descent into madness at the hands of Mad Jim Jaspers and Jackdaw's death, while he himself is murdered by the monstrous Fury before being resurrected back on Earth-616. This turns out to have been a deliberate plan by Merlyn to prepare him for the battle against the Jim Jaspers of Earth-616, a far more powerful being. Merlyn, who had previously resurrected Jackdaw, avoids doing so a second time to increase his chances of successfully reviving Captain Britain.
Brian would find himself saving his sister Betsy and the former Psi-Division of S.T.R.I.K.E. from his old enemy Slaymaster. He is also drafted by the mercenary group the Special Executive to save Saturnyne from a show trial, during which he witnessed the destruction of Earth-238's reality to prevent the Jaspers' Warp there from spreading out across the multiverse. He also encountered members of the pan-dimensional Captain Britain Corps, an organization of Captain Britains from various dimensions. However, he and his assembled allies were unable to prevent Earth-616's Jim Jaspers from expanding his influence over Earth, and though Brian fought bravely it fell to the Fury to kill the villain - Roma is of the opinion Merlyn intended all along for Brian to lead the Fury to Earth-616 to do this, but this was unconfirmed. Captain Britain also valiantly fights against the Fury, but although he comes close, is unable to best it. Now close to being killed by the Fury, Captain Britain is saved by Captain UK, a member of the Captain Britain Corps and on whose world the Fury killed all superheroes, including Captain UK's husband. Just as the Fury is about to land the killing blow on Captain Britain, Captain UK attacks it in a primal rage, tearing the Fury apart with her bare hands.[volume & issue needed]
Following this and battles against conventional villains the Crazy Gang, Slaymaster, and Vixen, Braddock was captured by Gatecrasher's Technet on behalf of Sat-Yr-9, and then fought his interdimensional counterpart Kaptain Briton. Brian is captured by Modred the Mystic, and teams with Captain America to defeat Modred. He also got caught up in the affairs of intelligence agency R.C.X., the British government's replacement for S.T.R.I.K.E. He also met his future lover Meggan.
Due to the pressures put on him after the Warp, Braddock travels abroad for a while. R.C.X. recruits his sister Betsy to become Captain Britain while he is overseas, angering Brian enough to make him quit when he learns this upon his return. She manages in the role for a while, but unfortunately she proves no match for Slaymaster, who tears out her eyes. Aware of his twin's pain through their telepathic bond, Brian rushes back to fight Slaymaster, whom he eventually kills. After this episode, Brian resumes the mantle of Captain Britain. In real-world terms, these events took place over twelve pages across two issues, though more than five months pass for the characters while Betsy is Captain Britain. Their effect on Betsy, and her future with the X-Men, was profound.
Drawing of the SwordEdit
When the X-Men appeared to perish in Dallas (see Fall of the Mutants), a group of heroes including Nightcrawler, Shadowcat, Phoenix III, and Meggan joined Brian to form Excalibur - Great Britain's premier super-team - in an effort to continue the work of the X-Men. Excalibur fought Gatecrasher's Technet in their first meeting together.
Brian was soon reunited with Courtney Ross. He then first battled the Juggernaut. He clashed with old foes Arcade, and the Crazy Gang, and was caused to temporarily switch bodies with the Crazy Gang's Tweedledope. Brian also encountered and fought his other-dimensional Nazi counterpart Hauptmann Englande. With Excalibur, he battled Arcade's "Loonies". With Excalibur, he battled Thor, believing Thor to be Juggernaut due to Loki's magic. Brian then journeyed with Thor into a dimension ruled by Juggernaut.
Knights of PendragonEdit
During this period, Marvel UK launched a miniseries starring Captain Britain. It presented a much darker and mature version of Braddock as a part of the Arthurian myth than was found in Excalibur. In the first volume, Braddock teams with police inspector Dai Thomas, a regular from his old solo series, and journalist Kate McClellan. The three investigate a series of grisly murders that are finally revealed to be the work of mythical creature the Green Knight, a key character in Arthurian mythology. The series also implied a strong mystical connection between Braddock and the knight Lancelot.
Brian quits costumed adventuring for a time and concentrates on research, building the Midnight Runner for Excalibur. Eventually, he and Meggan become engaged. However, Brian, Meggan, and the rest of Excalibur are soon captured by the R.C.X. and Brian is severely beaten while resisting. Dying, broken and bloody, he is healed by Roma, who fixes the arcane circuitry in his costume to match his body's frequencies. She also removes the "blunder factor" she had secretly cast over him (a curse she had cast ensuring that he would need the help of the entire team until he saw the innate value in it). The evil members of R.C.X. are cleared out in a joint effort by Excalibur and the members of an internal mutiny.
Immediately afterward, Phoenix III reappears and Excalibur journeys into the future to save the world from the Sentinels. On the way back, Brian is lost in the time-stream. Eventually, his body parts start reappearing in the same space as Rachel's - first his arms, then his chest - for brief flickers. Eventually, a rift is opened in which Brian and Rachel switch places. Rachel is flung to the far future to become the Mother Askani and Brian returns home. He is flooded, however, with memories of the far future and remains disconnected from the real world. He calls himself "Britannic" for some time, but eventually re-acclimates himself to his old life. It changes slightly, as Excalibur moves to Muir Island and new members join the team. Brian has a prophetic vision concerning the London Branch of the Hellfire Club's plan to take over the United Kingdom. Brian infiltrates the Club by claiming his father's position as Black Rook and, again with Excalibur's help, thwarts its efforts at domination.
King of OtherworldEdit
In a battle with the Dragons of the Crimson Dawn, Brian expends all of his power to stop a dimensional portal from opening. Having lost his powers, he leaves the team for some time, but returns to fulfill his dream of marrying Meggan. After the ceremony on Otherworld, the team disbands and its members return to the United States.
Brian soon finds work at the Darkmoor research facility. During one of his tests on the new blade and armor of his friend the Black Knight, Widget appears with warriors who begin to attack on Roma's behalf. The heroes (including Psylocke, who is also visiting England) drive the attackers off, then follow them to Otherworld where they discover that the Captain Britain Corps has been decimated. Together with the survivors - Crusader X and Captain UK - Brian and his comrades attempt to stop Roma from acquiring the Sword of Might. This, together with the Amulet of Right, would have the ability to remake the cosmos. Brian searches for the Sword but finds a computer-filled shrine in a cavern built by his father. A hologram of James Braddock, Sr. explains to Brian that he is the savior and rightful heir of Otherworld with the innate right to wield Excalibur. The hologram re-activates Brian's powers and as he draws the sword, a fiery cross (similar to the British flag) appears as a mask on his face. Brian then confronts Roma, who is revealed to be his father's sentient and insane computer Mastermind. With the aid of the real Roma, Braddock defeats the powerful computer. Roma then relinquishes control of Otherworld to Captain Britain. He and Meggan remain in Otherworld as effective rulers of the multiverse. Unbeknownst to Brian, the events leading up to his assumption of the Otherworld were orchestrated by Kang the Conqueror, for reasons yet to be revealed.
In the "Lionheart of Avalon" storyline in The Avengers, the sorceress Morgan Le Fay captures Brian and Meggan. Le Fay hopes that by killing Braddock and severing his mystical ties to the land, she will destroy all of Great Britain. However, Brian appears to Kelsey Leigh, a British mother who dies protecting both her children and Captain America from the Wrecking Crew. Braddock offers her the choice between the Amulet and the Sword and, feeling that she could better defend her children with a weapon, she chooses the latter. Although she is changed into a new Captain Britain, she remains cursed by the inability to ever reveal herself to her children. Because he transfers his power to Kelsey, the plan to destroy Britain fails.
Returning to Otherworld, Braddock and Meggan become rulers of the realm. However, Captain Britain is forced to come back to Earth to stop the House of M reality-shift from destroying all dimensions. During this time, his wife Meggan apparently sacrifices her life to close a rip in time that would have destroyed all existence. This results in Brian becoming active as Captain Britain again and the formation of a new Excalibur, along with Peter Wisdom, Sage, Juggernaut, Dazzler, and Nocturne. Captain Britain also believes his sister Psylocke to be dead, unaware that she has joined the Exiles.
He also assisted Pete Wisdom and British intelligence agency MI-13 in their battle against a Martian invasion.
After the defeat of Albion by New Excalibur, Braddock is reunited with his sister and the Exiles in the miniseries X-Men: Die by the Sword before he is severely injured by Rouge-Mort.
Captain Britain and MI: 13Edit
A new series, written by Paul Cornell and drawn by Leonard Kirk, features Captain Britain, Pete Wisdom, and other British superheroes working for MI: 13. The series opened with a Skrull onslaught on Britain, part of the "Secret Invasion" storyline, that saw every British hero drafted into MI:13.
After fighting Skrull forces in London, Brian was dispatched with Pete Wisdom, John the Skrull, and Spitfire to the Siege Perilous (a gateway to the Otherworld) to secure Avalon and thus the world's magic from Skrull conquest. Brian is left uncomfortable by having to kill Skrulls and being separated from the Corps, and simply desires to represent his country (believing, despite Wisdom's statements to the contrary, that he stopped doing so). When the Skrulls shot a missile at the Siege to destroy Earth's access to magic, he attempted to divert it and was killed in a vicious explosion  - every inhabitant of the United Kingdom became instantly aware of his death.
Captain Britain was once again resurrected by Merlin in the center of Britain, and after taking possession of the sword Excalibur, confronted the Skrulls in London; his resurrected form is stated by Merlin to be no longer plagued with doubts and a unified symbol of the United Kingdom, "like their flag, one thing that contains many!". He has increased powers and theoretically has no limits, but this is reliant on his level of confidence - he can just as easily become weak and vulnerable. While he has chosen to work with MI:13 and their superhero team, he has stated that the superheroes will no longer kill.
In battle against Doctor Plokta, creator of the Mindless Ones, he was temporarily trapped in Plokta's "Dream Corridor" - a magical construct trapping you in your heart's desire - where he briefly believed he had found Meggan again. He got free and defeated Plokta by forcing him into his own Corridor (presented as a supremely powerful act), but was left unaware that the real Meggan had tried to make contact and was now stuck in Hell. Later, however, during a conflict with Dracula, Dr. Doom gives Meggan to Dracula to use as a bargaining chip. After Captain Britain and MI13 defeat Dracula, Meggan and Captain Britain are reunited.[volume & issue needed]
During an international meeting between Steve Rogers and MI13, Captain Britain was offered a job with the Avengers. Captain Britain accepted despite mixed reactions from his MI13 teammates.
He then disappeared from view to fight a war in Otherworld against the demonic Goat, who had attempted to subjugate the multiverse. His brother Jamie, now cured of madness, was a key ally and Brian tried to cajole Psylocke into joining as well. Relations with his sister deteriorated as the Corps tried to put her teammate Fantomex on trial for murdering a child Apocalypse, arguing that it was still a crime to kill a child for what they may become. Ironically, in the end it turned out the Goat was a future version of Jamie who had been turned evil and Betsy, who had been forced to sacrifice her emotions to win in battle, stopped the villain by killing the contemporary Jamie; she then berated Brian for leaving the choice to her. He was left bitter by the loss and estranged from his sister.
Later, he becomes one of the new members of the Secret Avengers. He left when the team disbanded after a battle with a race of robotic beings known as the Descendants. Relations were salvaged with Betsy after X-Force was disbanded and she admitted he had been right to try to convict Fantomex for murder, while he admitted that it had been a testament to character that Fantomex had ever been able to fight off his murderous Sentinel urges.
He is later seen as the head of the Braddock Academy (the British answer to the Avengers Academy), running it alongside Meggan, Spitfire, Union Jack, and Elsa Bloodstone. One of the students is a young alternate version of himself, Kid Briton.
At an unspecified time, Captain Britain and an army of British heroes defeated Mys-Tech in battle; the agency came close to sending all of Britain to hell in order to pay off their debts to Mephisto. Following the battle, S.H.I.E.L.D. was secretly called in to clean up the remains of Mys-Tech's bases and technology as MI-13 didn't have the resources to do it. Brian was made a member of S.H.I.E.L.D.'s European Division. Years later, Pete Wisdom learned about this and sarcastically remarked he was proud that Brian was acting like him.
Brian, MI-13, and S.H.I.E.L.D. began investigating a suspected return of Mys-Tech but he was swiftly beaten down and captured by Death's Head II. This was actually a ruse by Death's Head II to plant a tracking device and find out why the Psycho-Wraiths wanted the captain (he didn't bother to tell Brian). The Prime Wraith wanted the hero to be part of six living batteries for a monotrace core, opening a portal to Hell for Mephisto's armies (led by the brainwashed hero Killpower) to ravage the Earth. Captain Britain was freed and fought to hold back the demons, and tried to find a solution other than killing Killpower. "We're heroes, we don't [kill]--" was all he could say before Killpower was gunned down by the anti-heroes Major Hauer, Death's Head, and Colonel Liger. Afterwards, on a whim Captain Britain placed a union flag on top of a damaged Big Ben, deciding that surviving the battle gave them "the right to celebrate a little" 
Time Runs OutEdit
Eight months later during the Time Runs Out storyline, it is revealed that the Multiverse is suffering from violent incursions between parallel Earths. Captain Britain is seen as a new member of the Illuminati. He is shown to be missing one of his eyes and states that he is the last surviving member of the Captain Britain Corps with the other members having all perished due to the collapse of the Multiverse.
Champions of EuropeEdit
Powers and abilitiesEdit
Originally, Captain Britain's powers were linked to the mystical Amulet of Right, worn around his neck. When Brian Braddock rubbed the amulet he was transformed from an ordinary mortal into a superhero version of himself, complete with a more muscular physique. The amulet could also mystically replenish his superhuman energies. He possessed a telescoping staff to vault which had other functions, the most heavily relied upon being the ability to project a force field. Later, Merlyn changed the staff into the mace-like Star Sceptre, which Captain Britain could utilize like a quarterstaff and which gave him the ability of flight. Merlyn changed his costume just before he entered the alternate Earth-238, fusing the powers of the Amulet and the Scepter into the new uniform and then later put these powers within Captain Britain himself when he was forced to rebuild Captain Britain following Captain Britain's death at the hands of the Fury, making the suit a regulatory device for his powers. Eventually, Captain Britain no longer required even the battle-suit for the full use of his powers, as his heritage of being the son of a denizen of the extra-dimensional Otherworld became enough to power him.
Brian Braddock has superhuman strength, speed, stamina, durability, reflexes, senses, and the ability to fly at supersonic speeds. He possesses enhanced perceptions that allow him to be aware of things others may miss (such as objects cloaked by spells of illusion). When he and Meggan destroyed the Otherworld energy matrix at Roma's prompting[volume & issue needed], the energies that allowed him to retain his power within the UK without his costume were dissipated. Hence, to retain his powers anywhere on Earth, he must wear the costume at all times. His costume acts as an antenna and battery, allowing him to retain his powers wherever he goes.
However, the conditions of his power were once again changed during his death and resurrection in the first story arc of Captain Britain and MI: 13 as explained by writer Paul Cornell,
As we reveal in issue five, the limits of Captain Britain's powers are now tied into his emotions. So if he's feeling very determined and confident, then he's very powerful, but if he's losing it then he'll really be losing it. He's as strong as he used to be, and he can fly, and that's all due to his magical nature, not to his costume. I've always seen him as something like the Shazam Captain Marvel, a hero formed through magic. Which means the subjective nature of what he can now do feels apt to me. As he himself says about great feats depending on whether or not he can gather all his courage together, he says: "well, I am Captain Britain."
Captain Britain is the fraternal twin of Betsy Braddock, a telepath, resulting in a strong psychic bond between the two. As described by writer Chris Claremont in the Uncanny X-Men House of M storyline, the two are in fact immune to each other's powers because of their genetic connection.
In addition, Braddock is a brilliant scientist with a Ph.D. in physics.
Captain Britain has been represented in various incarnations, not exclusive to Brian Braddock. In addition to other characters who have assumed the mantle of Captain Britain in the absence of Braddock, there have been several other versions of characters written to have originated from alternate universes.
- Brian Braddock - becomes Captain Britain, after Merlyn gives him the Amulet of Right.
- Elizabeth "Betsy" Braddock - assumes the mantle of Captain Britain while Brian Braddock is away working for the covert British agency R.C.X.
- Modred the Mystic - briefly assumes the mantle of Captain Britain by syphoning off Braddock's energies in an effort to defeat Merlyn.
- Kelsey Leigh Kirkland - receives the Sword of Might from Braddock, after she is killed defending Captain America.
Alternate universe versionsEdit
Captain Britain CorpsEdit
Founded by Merlyn, the Captain Britain Corps are formed to defend the Multiverse. Each member protected his or her reality based on their dimensional equivalent of Britain, and was powered by the friction between dimensions. Prominent members aside from Braddock include Captain Albion and Captain UK. The group includes multiple versions of Braddock, as well, including Captain England, Crusader X, and others named Captain Britain.
Bran Bardic is from a world ravaged by war for almost a century. This version of Braddock chose the Sword of Might over the Amulet of Right and would later travel to Earth-616 and ally himself with Black Air and Shadow-X before creating an army of Shadow Captains in an attempt to take over England and overthrow the Captain Britain Corps.
Age of ApocalypseEdit
In the Age of Apocalypse, Brian Braddock never becomes Captain Britain, and is one of the members of the Human High Council, alongside Moira Trask, Bolivar Trask, Emma Frost, and Mariko Yashida. Braddock is also the most vocal advocate for the extermination of mutants, much to the weariness of Yashida and Frost, who seems much less fanatical in their beliefs. After a failed attempt on his life, Braddock proposes the assembly of the entire Council fleet to attack Apocalypse's capital.[volume & issue needed] However, it is revealed that Braddock had in fact become a victim of a mind control device that forced him to act as a mole for Donald Pierce and his Reavers, all servants of Apocalypse.[volume & issue needed] Braddock dies at Pierce's hands when he overcomes his influence and refuses to kill Emma Frost.[volume & issue needed]
In an alternate AoA timeline, from What If?: Age of Apocalypse, Captain Britain is a member of the Defenders (their version of the Avengers), and uses Iron Man's armor. In this timeline, Legion kills both Professor Xavier and Magneto, therefore the X-Men never existed, so mankind's only hope lies with the Defenders. The other Defender members are Weapon X, the Thing (using a metal prosthetic arm), X-Man, Colossus, Brother Voodoo, Molecule Man, and Sauron, led by Captain America (who wields Thor's hammer, Mjolnir).[volume & issue needed] During the final offensive against Apocalypse, Captain Britain loses his life fighting the Hulk (one of Apocalypse's Horsemen in this reality), who rips Britain's body apart.[volume & issue needed]
A zombie version of Captain Britain briefly appears in the miniseries Marvel Zombies while the Silver Surfer travels the globe. He also briefly appears in Marvel Zombies vs. The Army of Darkness, having been zombified by the world-racing newly infected Quicksilver.
In the Ultimate Marvel Universe, Captain Britain is a member of the European Defense Initiative (the EU equivalent of the Ultimates), along with Captain Italy, Captain France, Captain Spain and several unnamed members most likely from other European countries, all of whom have the same powers: flight, super strength and a force field. All four of them developed their powers from the super powered exo-suits developed by Professor Sir James Braddock, who oversees the EDI super soldier program. Captain Britain and the other members of European Defense Initiative helped the Ultimates track down and contain Thor and they released the Fantastic Four, Spider-Man and the X-Men during the Liberators' attack on America. They are also seen helping to pull up the Statue of Liberty after the battle is over. During Ultimatum, Captain Britain (along with other Captains) is discussing how to take action against Magneto in the Houses of Parliament. However, Multiple Man bursts in and sets off a bomb, destroying the Houses of Parliament and everyone inside. His status is unknown on panel, although he was listed in the in memoriam section at the end of Ultimatum #5. He survived the attack at the Houses of Parliament, although he succumbed to the cancer caused by using one of the first versions of the Captain Britain suit, and his brother James took the mantle of Captain Britain.
Age of UltronEdit
During the Age of Ultron storyline, Captain Britain and MI-13 join Captain Marvel in fighting the Ultron Sentinels that invade London. Captain Marvel and Brian sacrifice their lives to destroy the invading Ultron Sentinels, with Faiza Hussain tasked to become the next Captain Britain.
In other mediaEdit
- Captain Britain was briefly seen in the fourth part of the Phoenix Saga from X-Men, in the episode "The Starjammers". Psylocke mentions him during "Beyond Good and Evil", though she merely says "my brother".
- Captain Britain appears in The Super Hero Squad Show episode "O Captain, My Captain", voiced by Charlie Adler. He is shown as a member of the All-Captains Squad alongside Captain America, Captain Australia, Captain Brazil, and Captain Liechtenstein.
- Captain Britain briefly appears in the final episode of Marvel Anime.
- In March 2016, it was reported in the British media that Marvel had plans to start a new series starring Captain Britain.
- Captain Britain was almost going to appear in Spider-Man: Far From Home but was cut in the film.
- Captain Britain is a playable character in the Facebook game Marvel: Avengers Alliance.
- Captain Britain appears in Lego Marvel Super Heroes, voiced by JB Blanc.
- Captain Britain appears in Lego Marvel's Avengers, voiced by Travis Willingham. It is the original version of Captain Britain from the 1977 comic books, complete with Star Sceptre.
- Captain Britain was included in the Royal Mail Marvel stamp collection which was issued on 14 March 2019. There are 15 stamps illustrated by Alan Davis which includes Captain Britain, Union Jack, Spider-Man, Captain Marvel, Iron Man, Doctor Strange, Hulk, Black Panther, Thor and Peggy Carter.
IGN ranked Captain Britain as the 79th greatest comic book hero of all time stating, "as he is the only Marvel hero to receive the benefit of Alan Moore's pen, the character enjoys very rarefied status in the Marvel Universe", and 34th in their list of "The Top 50 Avengers".
An article in the Times of London in March 2016 stated, "Captain Britain's nemesis turned out to be lack of popularity, however, and his adventures ended after a year".
A number of trade paperbacks have been released collecting both the early run and Alan Moore's updated version (his run being reprinted after Jamie Delano's which followed it. However, the 2005 Panini reprint renumbers it as volume 1).
Trade Paperbacks from Panini and Marvel Comics
- 'Captain Britain Annual 1978 (by Chris Claremont, with pencils by Herb Trimpe and inks by Fred Kida, reprints Captain Britain Weekly #1-7, Marvel Comics, 1977)
- Volume 1: The Birth of a Legend (by Chris Claremont, collects Captain Britain Weekly #1-23, 196 pages, February 2007, ISBN 1-905239-30-0)
- Volume 2: Hero Reborn (by Gary Friedrich, collects Captain Britain Weekly #24-39 and Super Spider-Man and Captain Britain #231-238, 204 pages, November 2007, ISBN 1-905239-72-6)
- Volume 3: The Lion and the Spider (collects Super Spider-Man and Captain Britain #239-247, Marvel Team-Up #65-66, and Hulk Comic Weekly #1, 3-30, 204 pages, November 2008, ISBN 1-84653-401-1)
- Volume 4: The Siege of Camelot (by Alan Moore, Alan Davis and Steve Parkhouse, collects Hulk Comic Weekly #42-55, 57-63, Marvel Super Heroes #377-388 and The Daredevils #1-11, 258 pages, November 2009, ISBN 1-84653-433-X)
- Volume 5: End Game (by Alan Moore, Jamie Delano and Alan Davis, collects Mighty World of Marvel (vol. 2) #7-16 and Captain Britain Monthly #1-14, 292 pages, December 2010, ISBN 1-84653-459-3)
- Volume 1 (by Jamie Delano and Alan Davis, collects The Mighty World of Marvel vol. 2 #14-16 and Captain Britain Monthly #1-14, 1984–1985, tpb, 1988, ISBN 1-85400-020-9)
- Volume 2 (by Alan Moore and Alan Davis, collects Marvel Superheroes #387-388, The Daredevils #1-11 and The Mighty World of Marvel vol. 2, #7-13, 1982–1984, tpb, 2002, ISBN 0-7851-0855-6, Panini Comics, 2005, ISBN 1-905239-10-6)
Oversized Hardcovers from Marvel Comics
- Volume 1: Birth Of A Legend (collects Captain Britain #1-39 and Super Spider-Man & Captain Britain #231-232)
- Volume 2: Siege Of Camelot (collects Super Spider-Man & Captain Britain #233-247, Marvel Team-Up #65-66, and material from Hulk Comic #1, 3-46, Incredible Hulk Weekly #47-55, 57-58, and Incredible Hulk (UK) #59-63
Omnibus Hardcovers from Marvel Comics
- Captain Britain By Alan Moore & Alan Davis Omnibus (collects Marvel Super-Heroes #377-388, The Daredevils #1-11, Captain America #305-306, Mighty World of Marvel (vol. 2) #7-16, Captain Britain Monthly #1-14, New Mutants Annual #2, and Uncanny X-Men Annual #11, 672 pages, hardcover, April 2009, ISBN 0-7851-3760-2)
Other collections include:
- Lowrey, Nigel (August 2008). "The Saga of Captain Britain". Back Issue!. Raleigh, North Carolina: TwoMorrows Publishing (29): 35–43.
- "To Create An Icon", Captain Britain Volume 1: The Birth of a Legend, Panini Comics, February 2007, ISBN 1-905239-30-0
- The Otherworld Saga at the Comic Book DB
- Nolen-Weathington, Eric. Modern Masters Volume 1: Alan Davis. TwoMorrows Publishing. p. 128.
- Panini, Marvel Expand Agreement, Announce New Projects Archived September 20, 2009, at the Wayback Machine (press release), Newsarama, March 29, 2006
- Captain Britain Returns to... Britain Archived August 11, 2010, at the Wayback Machine, Newsarama, February 25, 2005
- Spectacular Spider-Man Adventures #114 (April 2005)
- Panini UK Launches 'Marvel Heroes' with All-New Strips, Newsarama, October 9, 2008
- "EXCLUSIVE: "Time Runs Out for The Avengers in Alessio's Variant Covers". Comic Book Resources. 2014-07-29. Retrieved 2016-07-22.
- The Daredevils #1
- Chris Claremont (w), Herb Trimpe, Fred Kida (a). Captain Britain Weekly 1 (Week ending October 13, 1976), Marvel Comics
- Captain Britain (vol.2) #7
- Captain Britain Weekly #9
- Captain Britain Weekly #5 and #38, both times with supporting character Jacko Tanner
- Captain Britain Weekly #8 - 16
- Captain Britain Weekly #17 to #27
- Captain Britain Weekly #18-19
- The Daredevils #1: "A Rag, A Bone, A Hunk of Hair"
- Chris Claremont (w), John Byrne (p), Dave Hunt (i). Marvel Team-Up 65 (January 1978), Marvel Comics
- Marvel Team-Up #65-66
- Excalibur #53
- The Mighty World of Marvel #13
- Captain Britain Vol. 2 #2-3
- Captain Britain Vol. 2 #4-6
- Captain America #305-306
- Captain Britain Vol. 2 #9
- Captain Britain Vol. 2 #13
- Excalibur Special Edition #1
- Excalibur #1
- Excalibur #2
- Excalibur #4-5
- Excalibur #9-11
- Marvel Comics Presents #31-38
- Thor #427-429
- Wisdom (MAX) #6
- "SUPER SPY WEEKEND: Captain Britain". Comic Book Resources. 2008-03-07. Retrieved 2016-07-22.
- "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 2011-10-12. Retrieved 2016-02-09.CS1 maint: Archived copy as title (link)
- "Cornell & Lowe talk "Captain Britain and MI:13"". Comic Book Resources. 2008-02-18. Retrieved 2016-07-22.
- Paul Cornell (w), Leonard Kirk (p), Jesse Delperdang (i). "The Guns of Avalon" Captain Britain and MI:13 1 (July 2008), Marvel Comics
- Captain Britain and MI:13 #2
- Paul Cornell (w), Leonard Kirk (p), Jesse Delperdang, Scott Hanna (i). "The Guns of Avalon" Captain Britain and MI:13 3 (September 2008), Marvel Comics
- Captain Britain and MI:13 #5
- Captain Britain and MI:13 #6-9
- Cornell, Paul (2010). "Diplomatic Incident". Age of Heroes. New York: Marvel comics.
- Uncanny X-Force #23
- Uncanny X-Force #24
- Secret Avengers #22
- Secret Avengers #37
- Uncanny X-Force #35
- Avengers Arena #5
- Revolutionary War: Alpha
- Revolutionary War: Alpha, Death's Head, and Warheads
- Revolutionary War: Omega
- Avengers (vol. 5) #35
- New Avengers (vol. 3) #25
- U.S.Avengers #7. Marvel Comics.
- Avengers Vol. 8 #11. Marvel Comics.
- Captain Britain no. 35
- The Daredevils no. 1
- Captain Britain vol. 2 no. 13
- The Daredevils no. 2
- "And Hell Followed: Cornell talks Captain Britain & MI:13". Comic Book Resources. 2008-09-12. Retrieved 2016-07-22.
- Uncanny X-Men #462-465
- Captain Britain (vol. 2) #13. Art by Alan Davis.
- Captain America #305
- Avengers vol. 3, #77 (March 2004)
- Ultimates 2 #13
- Ultimate X-Men #99-100
- Ultimate Comics: Ultimates #1-5
- Ultimate Fallout #6
- Avengers Assemble #15AU
- "Marvel Super Hero Squad". Comics Continuum. 2009-07-28. Retrieved 2016-07-22.
- Sherwin, Adam (28 March 2016). "Captain Britain: UK's obscure first superhero could be resurrected for TV series". The Independent. UK. Retrieved 28 March 2016.
- Malvern, Jack (28 March 2016). "Captain Britain back from the 1970s for TV adventure". The Times. UK. Retrieved 28 March 2016.
- Josh Wilding. "SPIDER-MAN: FAR FROM HOME Director Addresses Captain Britain, Gwen Stacy, And Sinister Six Rumors - EXCLUSIVE". Comic Book Movie.
- "Galactus Lands in New LEGO Marvel Super Heroes Trailer | Marvel Heroes Games | News". Marvel.com. Retrieved 2016-07-22.
- "Royal Mail Marvel Stamp Collection". royalmail.com. Retrieved 2019-03-17.
- "Captain Britain is number 79". IGN. Retrieved May 11, 2011.
- "The Top 50 Avengers". IGN. April 30, 2012. Retrieved July 28, 2015.
- "The Unofficial Handbook of Marvel Comics Creators". Web.archive.org. 2006-05-04. Archived from the original on 2006-05-04. Retrieved 2016-07-22.CS1 maint: BOT: original-url status unknown (link)
- "House of M: Uncanny X-Men (Trade Paperback) | Comic Books | Comics". Marvel.com. Retrieved 2016-07-22.
- "X-Men: Die by the Sword (Trade Paperback) | X-Men | Comic Books | Comics". Marvel.com. 2008-03-12. Retrieved 2016-07-22.
- Captain Britain on Marvel Database, a Marvel Comics wiki
- Captain Britain (Brian Braddock) at Marvel.com
- Captain Britain Weekly at Tainthemeat.com.
- Marvel Heroes Classic Role-playing Game Statistics for Captain Britain
- Captain Britain (Brian Braddock) at the Comic Book DB
- Captain Britain at the International Catalogue of Superheroes
- Captain Britain (1976) at the Grand Comics Database
- Captain Britain (1985) at the Grand Comics Database
- Captain Britain at the Big Comic Book DataBase
- Captain Britain at the Marvel Directory
- Captain Britain at UncannyXmen.net
- Captain Britain at Don Markstein's Toonopedia. Archived from the original on April 9, 2012.