Blackbriar Thorn

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Blackbriar Thorn
Blackbriar Thorn - from Day of Vengeance 1.jpg
Blackbriar Thorn battles Spectre in Day of Vengeance #1 (June 2005).
Art by Justiniano
Publication information
Publisher DC Comics
First appearance DC Comics Presents # 66 (February 1984)
In-story information
Team affiliations Injustice Society
Abilities Energy Sourcing
Magical powers
Air and wind manipulation
Illusion
Size shifting
Regeneration
Extensive control over a variety of plant life

Blackbriar Thorn is a DC Comics supervillain. Created by Len Wein and Joe Kubert, the character first appeared in DC Comics Presents # 66 (Feb 1984).

Fictional character biography[edit]

Origins[edit]

Blackbriar Thorn was a High Priest of the ancient Druids of Cymru. While his entire sect is massacred by attacking Roman forces, Thorn absconds to the surrounding forest. Attempting to escape capture, he transforms himself into solid wood, hiding amongst the trees. Unfortunately for Thorn, the agony of his dying comrades creates a geological upheaval which buries his newly arboreal form underground.

Millennia later, Blackbriar Thorn's body is unearthed by an archaeologist and subsequently displayed at The Gotham City Museum of History. When moonlight strikes the statue on the night of its unveiling, Thorn is revived and begins to wreak havoc upon the Museum and its patrons, counted among whom are alter egos of Superman and Etrigan the Demon. The mismatched heroic pair's actions drive Thorn to retreat into the city, where he later rampages in a plot to procure a new body—that of Superman. Together, Etrigan and Superman defeat Thorn, ostensibly rendering him incorporeal.[1]

Crisis on Infinite Earths[edit]

Blackbriar Thorn appears, seemingly in human form, during the Crisis on Infinite Earths. He, Etrigan, and other assembled mystics lend their combined energies—channeled through Doctor Occult and Green Lantern Alan Scott—to successfully defeat the Anti-Monitor's Shadow Demons, which had been ravaging the Earth.[2]

Post-Crisis[edit]

Ostensibly disembodied once more and said to have lingered in Gotham Park since his prior defeat, Thorn is later channeled by a stage psychic at the behest of John Constantine to provide information about pending calamity in The Green.[3]

Blackbriar Thorn next appears (again, with a human appearance) as an agent of the demon Neron in a demonic realm called The Abyss. Holding captive the soul of Mollie Scott as bait, Thorn attempts to ensnare her husband, Alan Scott, but, in defeat, is surprised to find Alan no longer vulnerable to wood. [4]

As part of Johnny Sorrow's version of the Injustice Society, a more woody-looking Thorn and his teammates are defeated by Wildcat as they invade the JSA's Headquarters.[5][6] Thorn's defeat left his body splintered, one shard of which is kept on display in JSA Headquarters. Though able to regenerate, Thorn lies dormant until the Injustice Society's next attack. Using a crossbow, Injustice Society comrade Tigress shoots the splintered sliver of Blackbriar Thorn into Alan Scott's chest. Apparently once more susceptible to wood, Scott is gravely wounded as Thorn regenerates from the embedded projectile and proceeds to inflict more damage.[7] Thorn is ultimately defeated in this siege on the JSA by Stargirl.[8]

Blackbriar Thorn appears most recently in Day of Vengeance battling the Spectre, who, influenced by Eclipso, attempts to kill all magic wielders in the DC Universe. The combatants appear in gigantic form greatly dwarfing onlookers.[9] Thorn loses the battle, but delays his next regeneration in order to lend his powers, along with many other mystics, in a combined effort to defeat the rampaging Spectre.[10]

Blackbriar Thorn was among the villains in the ambush of the JSA led by Tapeworm.[11]

The New 52[edit]

In The New 52 (a reboot of the DC Comics universe), Blackbriar Thorn is one of two powerful magical entities used by Nick Necro to combat the Justice League Dark. He briefly tries to destroy Zatanna in Slaughter Swamp near Gotham, controlling an entire forest with his magic. He is then possessed by Deadman and neutralized.

During the Forever Evil storyline (namely Forever Evil: Blight), Blackbriar Thorn is among the magic users in the possession of Felix Faust and Nick Necro where they planned to use the magic users as part of a weapon to defeat the creature that destroyed the Crime Syndicate's Earth.[12]

Powers and abilities[edit]

Blackbriar Thorn has exhibited a plethora of abilities, including manipulation of the weather, extensive control over vegetation—either living or dead, the ability to regenerate from even a sliver of his physical form, creation of illusions. Thorns abilities are terran-based and, as seen in his debut, he can draw extensive strength and abilities though physical contact with the Earth itself. Inside buildings, he still retains the ability to control surrounding plant life, animating it to his will and frequently increasing its volume and strength. Thorn's organic manipulation of his own woody form, including the projection of tendrils and vines, appears to be uninhibited when separated from terra firma as well.[6]

In other media[edit]

Television[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ Wein, Len (w), Kubert, Joe (p). "The Resurgence of Blackbriar Thorn" DC Comics Presents 66 (February, 1984), DC Comics
  2. ^ Wolfman, Marv (w), Pérez, George (p), Ordway, Jerry (i). "Final Crisis" Crisis on Infinite Earths 12 (March, 1986), DC Comics
  3. ^ Veitch, Rick (w), Ewins, Brett and Veitch, Rick (p), Alcala, Alfredo (i). "The Secret Life of Plants" Swamp Thing v2, 70: 15 - 17 (March, 1988), DC Comics
  4. ^ Peterson, Scott (w), Jaminez, Phil and Williams, J.H. (p), Stokes, John and Gray, Mick (i). Underworld Unleashed: Abyss - Hell's Sentinel 1 (December, 1995), DC Comics
  5. ^ Goyer, David S. Johns, Geoff (w), Sadowski, Stephen (p), Bair, Michael (i). "Black Planet" JSA 9 (April, 2000), DC Comics
  6. ^ a b Goyer, David S. Johns, Geoff (w), Sadowski, Stephen (p), Bair, Michael (i). "Wild Hunt" JSA 10 (May, 2000), DC Comics
  7. ^ Goyer, David S. Johns, Geoff (w), Sadowski, Stephen (p), Bair, Michael (i). "Injustice Be Done, Part 1: Divide and Conquer" JSA 16 (November, 2000), DC Comics
  8. ^ Goyer, David S. Johns, Geoff (w), Sadowski, Stephen (p), Bair, Michael (i). "Injustice Be Done, Part 2: Cold Comfort" JSA 17 (December, 2000), DC Comics
  9. ^ Willingham, Bill (w), Justiniano (p), Wong, Walden (i). "Chapter One: One Last Drink at the End of Time" Day of Vengeance 1 (June, 2005), DC Comics
  10. ^ Willingham, Bill (w), Wagner, Ron (p), Vines, Dexter (i). "Chapter Three: A Hot Night In Budapest" Day of Vengeance 3 (August, 2005), DC Comics
  11. ^ Justice Society of America (vol. 3) #29
  12. ^ Constantine #11