Lady Zannah aka Sister Zealot as drawn by Jim Lee
|Publisher||Wildstorm (August 1992– August 2011)
DC Comics (May 2012 – Present)
|First appearance||WildC.A.T.s. #1 (August 1992)|
|Created by||Brandon Choi, Jim Lee|
|Alter ego||Lady Zannah|
|Notable aliases||Lucy Blaze|
Zealot (Zannah) is a fictional comic book superhero who has appeared in books published by Wildstorm Productions and DC Comics. Created by artist Jim Lee and writer Brandon Choi, she first appeared in WildC.A.T.s #1 (August 1992), as a member of that titular superhero team, during the period when Wildstorm and its properties were owned by Jim Lee. In that incarnation, Zealot was a millennia-old member of the alien race known as the Kherubim, and a Coda warrior, and was later associated with the organizations Wildcore and Team 7.
In 1999, Lee sold Wildstorm to DC Comics, and ownership of all Wildstorm characters, including Zealot, transferred to DC Comics. Her backstory and continuity remained the same, however, until DC's 2011 relaunch of their entire comics line, The New 52, which rebooted the continuity for most of its characters. Since then, Zealot was featured as a supporting character Deathstroke and later made appearances in Stormwatch.
The character was also a cast member in the 1994 - 95 animated TV series Wild C.A.T.s, in which she was voiced by Roscoe Handford.
Fictional character biography
Zealot's real name is Lady Zannah of Khera. Born on the planet of Khera, Zannah and her daughter Kenesha (who at the time believed Zealot was actually her sister) were stranded on Earth thousands of years ago when their Explorer ship crashlanded after a battle with a Daemonite warship. Zealot just survived thanks to her lover, Stratos, who put her in an escape pod. Zannah and the other survivors were scattered, forced to hide themselves amongst the human population. Their enemies had likewise been forced down, and though less humanoid, the Daemonites used their powers of possession and shapeshifting to blend in, too. For the next few millennia, a secret war raged, with the Kherubim defending the vulnerable and oblivious humans from their would-be conquerors.
Zannah took the name Zealot when she formed a sisterhood of warriors, known as The Coda, on earth. She fought with them for many years, even leading the group for a while. However, an incident occurred in Troy (presumably during the Trojan War), causing her to be branded a traitor and expelled from the order. She arranged for the Coda to help the Greeks conquer Troy in exchange for 99 female babies to be raised as new coda. She helped Ulysses conceive of the trojan horse and stationed Coda warriors inside it. During the fighting she decided that the killing of all of the unarmed women and children of Troy was going too far, so she saved the life of the royal family. In doing so it was decided by her fellow Coda that she had betrayed the precepts of the Coda. She was engaged in combat by her closest friend Artemis, whom she beat, but refused to kill. This was considered by Artemis to be a mortal insult. The two violations of Coda precepts made her a lifetime (in their case nearly immortal lifetimes) enemy of the Coda. Subsequent to this event, Zealot spent a century serving the witch known as Tapestry. She did this as payment for Tapestry saving Kenesha's life after having been poisoned. During this period Tapestry tried to brainwash Zealot to her way of thinking, but although Zealot was changed by her time working for the witch, she managed to retain her true self inside. During her stay with Tapestry though, Zealot became a proficient wielder of magics. The magic taught though was dark magic and soul corrupting. Because of this Zealot swore never to use it again, but had to break her promise when she battled Tapestry many years after her original servitude.
For a period in the 20th century, Zealot lived in America and went by the name Lucy Blaize. During this time she worked for the US Government and went on to become a member of the ill-fated Team One, with fellow Kherubim Mr. Majestic (the father of Savant) and Lord Emp. After an affair with John Colt Zealot became pregnant. Not wishing for the child to become involved in the Kheran/Daemonite war she gave the child away to a human couple living in Siberia. During an adventure many years later the psychic oracle character Providence told Zealot that she would be reunited with her long lost child. Soon after she meets the Stormwatch hero Winter and is surprised to see his white hair similar to her own and hear his Russian accent. Despite her suspicions Zealot decides to not tell Winter of her discovery.
Years later, Zealot formed a close relationship with Cole Cash, and took the unprecedented step of training him, a man, in the ways of the Coda; he became the superhuman known as Grifter. Later both of them joined the WildC.A.T.s. She served with them for a number of years, though she also briefly joined Wildcore during a period when the rest of the WildC.A.T.s were believed dead.
During a mission with the WildC.A.T.S to destroy an Irish village full of genetically engineered soldiers created with Daemonite technology, Grifter and her found a group of kids hiding on a basement. The two of them tried to get the kids to a safe place before they could blow up the village. Zealot was shot whilst protecting the children and was left behind by her teammates, who believed her dead after the explosion.
However, it was revealed she wasn't dead, but had been targeted by several Coda factions. It was during this time that Zealot found Grifter in a bar. He was having one-night stands with women similar to her and he was too drunk to realize she wasn't just a lookalike. They had sex and were attacked by several Coda warriors. After the battle, she ran away, but they later caught up with each other.
At one point Zealot was captured and sentenced to death by Earth's Coda Sisterhood. While captured she was tortured to near death multiple times. It was her old friend Grifter (in control of the android Ladytron) and his ragtag group of warriors that later came to her rescue.
Once more on the loose she had to team up alongside Mr. Majestic yet again to fight an evil plot from the Shapers Guild to recreate Kherubim on Earth (using a device known as the planet shaper). It was during this battle that Zealot's mother, Lady Harmony, was killed. Shortly after Savant was told that her true parents were Zealot and Majestros. Zealot then teamed up with many former Wildcat members, such as Grifter and Majestic, to fight Zealot's longtime rival, Nemesis.
Zealot joins with many of her ex-Wildcat teammates in an unofficial form of the group as they fight with Captain Atom.
Zealot's lover, Stratos, did not die during the crash. He found the time-travelling WildC.A.T.s-member Condition Red on the ship before the crash and was taken along when Condition Red travelled back to the present in WildC.A.T.s #49. Stratos' storyline has not been explored since then.[volume & issue needed]
WildCats vol. 4
Zealot is in a Coda Sisterhood building on the planet Khera, having retired there from Earth. However, her (future) return to Earth was precipitated by a large Daemonite attack; although Majestic arrives and destroyed all the Daemonites, he drops to the floor and tells Zealot that their next target was Earth.[volume & issue needed]
The New 52
As part of DC Comics' 2011 relaunch of all of its titles, The New 52, Zealot makes her first appearance in Deathstroke #9 by Rob Liefeld. Is later revealed this version already met with Midnighter in the past when he and Apollo ask for her help.
Powers and abilities
Zealot is a master in weaponry and hand-to-hand combat, and has displayed a low level of superhuman strength (up to 2 tons). Like her former mate Lord Majestros (Mr. Majestic) she is a Kherubim High Lord, gifted with extremely long life, superhuman constitution, stamina and durability.[volume & issue needed]
In other media
- Zealot was a main character on the WildC.A.T.s animated TV series, voiced by Roscoe Handford.
- A Zealot figure from Playmates Toys was released in 1994. A new version of Zealot was released in 1995, in her Classic Coda Uniform.
- Milligan, Peter (w), Conrad, Will (a). "The Men Who Fell To Earth". Stormwatch Vol 3 #17 (April 2013). DC Comics.