Marvel Handbook

Hi everyone I’m Jim Trabold. Welcome back for another edition of the Handbook.

Hey Daron how’s it going?

Pretty good, how about yourself?

Going fine here. I had a nice holiday. How about you?

Mine was good. I had to work in the morning, but dinner with the “fam” was cool.

Cool. Why don’t we get to the emails then?

That’s what we’re here for.

Jim emails


Great column you have here. Back in the Raw vs. Nitro days, occasionally a wrestler would jump from one show to the other one and frequently it would revitalize their career. I don’t see why this same phenomenon couldn’t apply to Marvel and DC. My idea is that perhaps DC could trade someone like Doomsday to Marvel for the Absorbing Man and the Abomination for a couple years. This could generate renewed interest in the characters and make them “hot” again when they return to their company of origin. Sometimes we just get sick of a certain character that seems to be overused. Putting them in a new universe for a while could make them interesting again. How about a Joker for Bullseye swap? My questions are

1) do you think this could ever happen, and

I doubt it would happen. Reasons are

1. DC won’t do anything with Marvel with Joe in charge.

2. The copyrights. Marvel owns their characters and DC owns theirs. With a crossover it’s easier. But trading characters might be impossible.

3. Because it’s just too unlikely. I doubt any trades would ever happen.

As Jim said, this is pretty much not going to happen. You’re not the first person to propose something like this, and as cool as this could be, I just don’t think we’ll ever see it happen.

2) if it did happen, what trades do you think would benefit the companies and characters the most?

Well I doubt the big first stringers would be traded.

You know Spidey, Wolvie, Cap, Iron Man, Thor and a few more for Marvel.
Dc: Superman, Batman, Wonder Woman, Flash, Green Lantern, and a few others in DC

Second stringers and villains maybe. Just not the bigger baddies. Crossovers is one thing but trades are another.

So I think logic will state that second stringers or lesser villains can be traded. So let’s try trades that might help both.

1. Spider-Woman for Batgirl for a few months. It’s a good test of the waters. Two strong female characters that can hold their own.

2. Bullseye for Joker or Deathstroke. Hey I like that idea too. But the real problem is forgetting DC vs. Marvel. Batman took out Bullseye easily. That was plain wrong.

3. Ms. Marvel for Supergirl or Powergirl. Powers for powers it’s a match.

4. Sub-Mariner for Aquaman. Now this one makes sense maybe for the fact that both need new directions.

I mean we can likely come up with 10-15 trades that could work. Why don’t we see what the readers think? Anyone that can think of a good Marvel/DC trade please email them in and we’ll keep tabs of them. Adds something new and interactive. (just email a question to if you can).

I like this idea. Lets gather up a bunch of these from the readers and then Jim and I can come up with some and do a whole article on them. Let’s say 5 to 10 trades. Get those emails in if you want to play.

Keep up the great work.

Will do.


Glen emails


Read the Thing #1 last week. What is the story behind Goliath? He used to be called Black Goliath. I thought he was dead from some kind of wasting disease.

Real Name: William Barrett Foster
Occupation: Biochemist, occasional adventurer
Other Aliases: None
Place of Birth: Watts, Los Angeles, California
Marital Status: Divorced
Known Relatives: Claire Temple (ex-wife)
Group Affiliation: The Champions, Project: Pegasus
Source of Powers: Use of Pym Particles
Powers: Was formerly able to grow in size, mass and strength

History: A practicing biochemist, Bill Foster stumbles onto the formula that enables him to grow and increase his strength. By enhancing the formula that Ant Man used to shrink himself, Black Goliath is able to grow at will. Though his strength should increase with his size anyone who reads Black Goliath will wonder where that hulkean strength is. He seems to get his butt kicked each issue. Grant it, he comes back later to beat whichever villain tattooed him in the first place. Bill’s excuse is that he’s new to the superhero game and needs practice, and with the expertise of his three crack scientists he goes out to thwart the plans of evildoers everywhere.

First Appearance (as Bill Foster): Avengers Vol.1 #32
First Appearance (as Black Goliath): Power Man #24
First Appearance (as Giant-Man): Marvel Two-In-One #55

He didn’t die though. He did lose his powers though in Avengers v1 379-382

All appearances:

Avengers 32-35, 41, 54, 75, 244, 246, 363, 379-382
Marvel Feature 9
Power Man 24-25
Black Goliath 1-5
Marvel Two-In-One 24
Champions 11-13
Defenders 62-65
Spider-Woman 4, 47
Marvel Two-In One 54-58,76, 81-85, 96
Spectacular Spider-Man v1 41
West Coast Avengers 39, ann. 3
Marvel Super Heroes 11
Marvel Comics Presents 113-118
Thing v2 1

Also, is Cauldron the Scalding Man an established character? What’s his background? He seems very strange.

Actually he’s new. He has no known history as of yet. Let’s hope Marvel solves that in their next Handbook series. There’s an A-Z series coming. Here’s hoping Marvel asks me for help.

*Resists the urge to tell Jim not to hold his breath.*

Colin emails

Good day,

I wish to know about House of M. All these depowered mutants, are they in the full 616? Or is this an alternate universe that has been created? Is it supposed to be as permanant as anything can be in comic book land? I ask, because if it’s all true, 616 and permanant, I’m glad I don’t read Marvel anymore. Not having Havok, Iceman, Jubilee, Quicksilver and Magneto is criminal.

Actually House of M was sort of an alternate universe. One created by Wanda. To please her brother and father. Trying to make perfect lives for everyone. The after effect of what Wanda did impacted 616.

Decimation: The mass depowering of 1000s of mutants. I’ve listed them as we are going. Now the perminate factor. That might be another story. No one knows. Marvel says it is but you know how fast things can change.

By the way Havok still has his powers. So unless I put him on the wrong list. (I’ll have to look) you don’t have to worry about him.

The rest on your list are accurate though. Quicksilver you will see more covered in Son of M. His story is important after since he had Wanda create House of M.

Nightcrawler question #1: I’ve been thinking, and if his father is a demon, doesn’t that make him a demon (or at least a half-demon) and not a mutant? Namor is a mutant, but is a mutant because of his flight and strength; his Atlantean blood naturally gives him the ability to breathe underwater. But if Nightcrawler is the son of a demon, and he travels through a demonic dimension to teleport, that’s not really a mutant power, but a demonic power. His only power that MIGHT be considered a mutant power is his sticking to walls, but who’s to say that that isn’t a by-product of demonic blood? And you can’t say he’s a mutant because of Mystique, because Graydon Creed was a flatscan.

Hmmmm good question. I think the reality is he’s demon and mutant. A mutant demon likely. You know the extra abilities. Teleporting I think comes from his family. But not the sticking to substances and likelyhood of 3 fingers and toes. Cerebro detects him as a mutant as well. It doesn’t detect demons. So Kurt has an X-Factor gene.

Since Kurt’s “original” origin was that he was just a mutant, it’s hard to say what he may or may not get from his father. Considering that this is a relatively new development in his life (to his and our knowledge anyway), it’s probably not possible at all.

Nightcrawler question #2: If Nightcrawler was falling to his death, and he had gained a lot of momentum and velocity, he couldn’t just ‘port to the ground because he would still carry the momentum and go splat, yes? Could he teleport such that he would turn his momentum around? I mean, could he reappear from his ‘port and fall UP, at least until gravity brought him back under control, and he could safely teleport back down to the ground?

Hmmmmmmm possible. It’s also possible he could teleport to a shorter distance to the group. IE he could be jumping from a plane and momentum dropping him to the ground. He can teleport close enough to the ground that he won’t go splat. He normally would teleport before the fall or something to save himself.

I think way too much about these things


We all do that. That’s why comic geeks are special. They think of weird things. Your welcome.

*Seriously ponders for something to say, but fails miserably.*

Patrick emails

Hello, Jim and Daron,

Hey Pat

I was looking at the list of de-powered mutants today, and it hit me:

What exactly is Callisto’s mutant power? More importantly, besides Chris Claremont, does anybody care?

Heightened strength, agility, reflexes, sensory perceptions, and regenerative powers.

Her arms where transformed into multiple suction tentacles the last we saw her.

Thanks guys, keep up the good work! Have a happy Thanksgiving!

Welcome you to.

Oh and to answer your second question”¦no I don’t think anyone else really cares…

Ryan emails

hiya jim and the mighty DOL! i was inspired by dani’s column and wanted to shoot you guys an email. jim…you have been doing some great background stories on some of the heroes in the marvel universe, and i would like to ask you for one more. what exactly is the deal with betsy braddock/psylocke? i know there was some body/mind switching between this character, but what exactly happened? thanks in advance.

Alright I can do one. This should be fun.

Elisabeth (Elizabeth) “Betsy” Braddock was born in and raised in England. Born in the small town of Maldon, Essex, Betsy and her brothers had a very privileged life. She is the twin sister of Brian Braddock, better known as the superhero Captain Britain. She dyed her hair purple and became a fashion model, and secretly worked for the Psi-Division of STRIKE, Britain’s version of the US-based espionage outfit S.H.I.E.L.D. One of her assignments was to infiltrate the Hellfire Club, but Tessa forced her to abandon the mission. A British crime lord, Vixen, hired Slaymaster to destroy the psi-division, and he managed to kill all but Betsy, her lover Tom Lennox, and their friend Alison Double before Captain Britain defeated him.

When reality warped due to James Jaspers’s powers, Tom sacrificed himself to delay a group of superhuman-hunters to let the Braddocks escape. Following the repair of the reality warp, an evil version of Captain Britain from another universe named Kaptain Briton switched places with Brian, handed him over to the Technet, and tried to rape Betsy. In self-defense, she attacked him telepathically, killing him.

When the R.C.X. effectively invaded Braddock Manor and set up shop there, the Mastermind computer manipulated events to have Brian gave up the mantle of Captain Britain. Betsy assumed his uniform and received training from Captain UK, another alternate Captain Britain, and became the new Captain Britain while Brian was away, working for the covert British agency RCX, which had replaced the defunct STRIKE. Vixen lured Betsy into a trap, where Slaymaster beat her almost to death, gouging out her eyes. Summoned by his sister’s telepathic distress call, Captain Britain crushed Slaymaster’s head under a rock.

She was later kidnapped by the other-dimensional television producer Mojo and his henchwoman, the six-armed, android sorceress Spiral, and implanted with bionic eyes. Giving her the name “Psylocke”, Mojo made her the star of the Wildways TV program. The New Mutants, the teenage sister team of the X-Men, got involved, rescuing Psylocke from Mojo, and took her back with them to Westchester County, New York. She decided to stay with the X-Men and learn how to better control her powers.

Betsy joined the X-Men around the time of the Mutant Massacre. She helped the team by reading the mind of Sabretooth about Sinister, and valiantly defended the wounded against Sabretooth. She was among the X-Men as they fought the Adversary in Dallas, in the event known as The Fall of the Mutants, and subsequently transported to the Australian Outback by Roma. After a fight with the Reavers, Psylocke donned body armour to protect herself in physical confrontations.

After going through the dimensional gateway known as the Siege Perilous, Psylocke was found by the Hand, a clan of ninja. Their leader, Matsu’o Tsurabaya, contacted Spiral to swap the mind of his brain-dead lover, Kwannon, into Psylocke’s body. Her mind was slightly merged with Kwannon’s and, with the help of Spiral’s Body Shoppe, their bodies were made genetically identical. “Psylocke” was given Kwannon’s Asian body and martial arts training, and worked for the Mandarin until a plunge into Wolverine’s psychosis knocked her out of the brainwashing. At that point, she manifested her power in the form of a psychic knife that she would plunge into an opponent’s head to knock them out. In reality, there was only a part of Betsy in Kwannon’s body, believing herself to be Psylocke.

With some physical and mental conditioning, Psylocke became Lady Mandarin, the Hand’s prime assassin. As Psylocke, she donned a new, more revealing costume, gained highly remarkable ninja fighting skills and attained the ability to focus her telepathy into a “psychic knife,” which appeared as a dagger of energy projecting outward from her wrist.

Lady Mandarin’s first mission pitted her against Wolverine. Her psychic knife attack showed her his memories of her, breaking the Hand’s conditioning, and she escaped with Wolverine and Jubilee, eventually going with them to the country of Genosha on the trail of the New Mutants, who along with X-Men leader Storm, had been kidnapped as part of the revenge of Cameron Hodge, the former advisor to team X-Factor. There, they encountered Havok, whom Psylocke had psychically nudged through the Siege Perilous, acting as a Magistrate, one of the country’s gestapo-like military police. Following the defeat of Cameron Hodge, the X-Men reunited and returned to New York.

When the X-Men split into two teams, Psylocke joined Cyclops’s Blue Team, and started flirting with him. When Jean Grey found out, the two women started fighting, but were interrupted by the arrival of Kwannon, in what was Betsy’s body, calling herself Revanche, and claiming to be the real Betsy. Not even Wolverine’s enhanced senses could tell them apart, and attempts for an explanation from the Hand were unsuccessful. It took an infection of the Legacy Virus to determine that Revanche was not Betsy, and she gave Psylocke the parts of her mind and powers that Spiral had left with her, trading them for her own missing parts. Jean trained Betsy in her telepathic powers, and Betsy started a relationship with Warren Worthington III, the Archangel.

In an attempt to save Boomer from Sabretooth, Psylocke was critically wounded by the homicidal mutant who happened to be immune to telepathy at the time of their battle. To save her life, her lover Angel, along with Wolverine, Gomurr the Ancient, and Dr. Strange, journeyed into the dimension of the Crimson Dawn to retrieve some of the magical liquid to save Betsy’s life. The mission was successful although the healing liquid produced side effects: a red dagger-shaped tattoo over her left eye, a strange ability to slip into shadow, and a cold edge to her personality. This new chance at life came with a price, however. The evil Kuragari usurped control of the Crimson Dawn and tried to make Psylocke into his bride. Fortunately, Gomurr and Angel were able to return the balance to the Dawn and break Kuragari’s hold on Betsy.

Psylocke later battled the powerful telepath known as the Shadow King in a fight that disabled telepathic powers across the globe and destroyed her Astral form. She reappeared in a shadow form invisible to the Shadow King and tricked him into over-extending himself so she could contain him within her own mind. To keep the Shadow King imprisoned, Psylocke had to keep her telepathic powers focused on containing him, and thus effectively lost the use of her telepathy.

Shortly afterwards, Psylocke gained telekinetic power from Phoenix, and no longer had her telepathy. She was powerful enough to move giant beams and fly, but she still had control and stamina problems. She also seemed to have lost the ability to teleport between shadows. She started flirting with Thunderbird III and Warren broke up with her.

Shortly thereafter, Psylocke joined other members of the X-Men on a secret mission to find the lost Books of Truth, prophecies written by the precog Destiny, and she and Thunderbird became an “official” couple. On their first mission, however, Psylocke fought Vargas while protecting Rogue and Beast, who were badly beaten by the villain. Stabbed in the stomach, she died almost immediately, her spirit did stay on the mortal plane long enough to provide Bishop with some information as to the mission during a “Dreamtime” before being grabbed by a mysterious entity and pulled into a portal.

While it was assumed that Betsy was pulled into the “afterlife,” what happened to her was called into question when she re-appeared months later in the exact spot of her death, with no memory of the intervening time period. Her powers remained telekinesis, not her original telepathy, but her Crimson Dawn eye mark was gone.

The X-Men were called to collect her, and though reunited with them, also helping to defend the Earth from the saurian Hauk’ka in the Savage Land. During the battle she discovered that her telekinesis was more powerful and she was immune to telepathic attacks.

After medical tests by the Beast during her return to the X-Mansion, it was proven that she is indeed Elisabeth Braddock. She officially rejoined the team, and was reunited with her other teammates.

Returning to the X-Mansion, Betsy began to see visions of her brother Jamie, for unknown reasons. Then, when the Scarlet Witch unleashed a reality warp that re-wrote history, Betsy remained unaffected and was able to maintain Marvel Girl III’s status as well. The women found themselves in the White Hot Room, where Jamie told them they had to help set the world right.

When the Scarlet Witch’s reality warp altered the entire 616 universe in the House of M, Elisabeth Braddock became princess Elisabeth Glorianna Braddock, an adventurer and member of England’s royalty. She has now returned with the others to 616 Marvel Universe.

Decimation update


Beast (House of M 8)
Bishop (House of M Day After 1)
Bruiser (Runaways)
Cable (Cable/Deadpool 18)
Cannonball (Cable/Deadpool 18)
Colossus (House of M 8)
Cyclops (House of M 8)
Dazzler (New Excalibur 1)
Domino (House of M Day After 1)
Dust (New X-Men 20)
Elixar (New X-Men 20)
Emma Frost (House of M 8)
Erg (House of M Day After 1)
Firestar (House of M Day After 1)
Forge (Cable/Deadpool 18)
Franklin Richards (Fantastic Four)
Gambit (House of M Day After 1)
Gregor Smerdyakov (Mutopia X 5)
Havok (House of M Day After 1)
Hellion (New X-Men 20)
Icarus (New X-Men 20)
Justice (House of M Day After 1)
Madrox (House of M Day After 1)
Magma (House of M Day After 1)
Mammomax (House of M Day After 1)
Marvel Girl (House of M Day After 1)
Meltdown (Cable/Deadpool 18)
Mercury (New X-Men 20)
Mister M (Mutopia X 5)
Nightcrawler (House of M 8)
Nocturne (New Excalibur 1)
Peepers (House of M Day After 1)
Pete Wisdom (House of M Day After 1)
Petra (Deadly Genesis 1)
Psylocke (House of M Day After 1)
Rockslide (New X-Men 20)
Rogue (House of M Day After 1)
Sage (House of M Day After 1)
Shadowcat (House of M 8)
Siryn (Cable/Deadpool 18)
Stepford Cuckoos (New X-Men 20)
Storm (House of M Day After 1)
Strong Guy (House of M Day After 1)
Sunspot (House of M Day After 1)
Surge (New X-Men 20)
Tito Bohusk (Exiles 72)
Valeria Richards (Fantastic Four)
Wallflower (New X-Men 20)
Warpath (Cable/Deadpool 18)
Wither (New X-Men 20)
Wolfsbane (House of M Day After 1)
Wolverine (House of M 8)
X-23 (New X-Men 20)


Aero (New X-Men 20)
Angel Salvadore (Exiles 72)
Armena Ortega (Mutopia X 5)
Beak (Exiles 72)
Blob (House of M Day After 1)
Bugman (Mutopia X 5)
Callisto (House of M Day After 1)
Feral (House of M Day After 1)
Hannah Levy (House of M Day After 1)
Hydro (New X-Men 20)
Iceman (House of M 8)
The Juicers (Mutopia X 5)
Jubilee (House of M Day After 1)
Lara the Illusionist (Mutopia X 5)
Magneto (House of M 8)
Moonstar (House of M 8)
Polaris (X-Men 177)
Preview (New X-Men 20)
Prodigy (New X-Men 20)
Quicksilver (House of M Day After 1)
Scarlet Witch (House of M 8)
Spector (New X-Men 20)
Tag (House of M 8)
Thornn (House of M Day After 1)
Wind Dancer (House of M 8)
All Beak/Angel kids but 1 (Exiles 72)


Chamayra Ortega (Mutopia X 5)
John Grey (Uncanny X-Men 466)

Other matters:

X-Corp building in France bombed
Sentinel O*N*E activated against the mutants
Xavier Institute Student Body from 182 to 27

That’s it for this week. A rather interesting column. What do you think Daron?

Good stuff as always. I’m looking forward to hearing from everyone on the DC/Marvel trade idea.

Of course more challenging questions and better debate questions would be great to add in. You ask the reader maybe you’ll get some.

Didn’t we do that already?

Alrighty, I’ll sign off first.

1. question of the week: Which of the following will be the premise of Chris Claremont’s next limited series?

2. As always your opinions on anything in the article or out on the shelves is welcome. After all you never know what type of response you will get.

3. Keep those emails coming and make sure to label them Marvel Handbook

4. Next week it’s the yearly article piece. The perfect Gifts for the Marvel comics fan in your life. I do it around this time every year so I’m here to help again next week.

That’s it from my end. Reporting from my corner of the Marvel Universe I’m Jim Trabold. Have a great week and see you at the comic shop.

Before I go, I’d like to point you all to our newest interview up on the site: Caught In The Nexus: Travis Legge & Chris Delloiacono. The interview contains some great info on Nexus’ staffer Chris D’s first publication and even has a link to the site where you can buy said publication, which is out today. Do yourself a favor and check it out, and then let Chris know what you thought.

Past that have a great week everyone, see you in seven.

Join our newsletter

never miss the latest news, reviews, live event coverage, audio podcasts, exclusive interviews and commentary for Movies, TV, Music, Sports, Comics, Video Games!