Calypso (comics)

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Calypso
Calypso.png
Calypso.
Art by Todd McFarlane.
Publication information
PublisherMarvel Comics
First appearanceThe Amazing Spider-Man #209 (October 1980)
Created byDenny O'Neil (writer)
Alan Weiss (artist)
In-story information
Alter egoCalypso Ezili
PartnershipsKraven the Hunter
Notable aliasesThe Witch
Kraven Witch
AbilitiesMind control
Resurrection
Use of potions

Calypso Ezili is a fictional supervillain appearing in American comic books published by Marvel Comics, usually as an enemy of the superhero Spider-Man. She is a voodoo priestess who utilizes magic potions, and the occasional lover and partner of Kraven the Hunter.

Publication history[edit]

Calypso first appeared in Amazing Spider-Man #209 and was created by Denny O'Neil and Alan Weiss.[1]

Calypso initially appeared as a minor character The Amazing Spider-Man #209 and Peter Parker, The Spectacular Spider-Man #65, where she was an ally of Spider-Man's enemy Kraven the Hunter. After Kraven's death, Calypso bewitched the Lizard into helping her attack Spider-Man in Spider-Man Vol. 1, #1-5, then made guest appearances in Daredevil Vol. 1, #310-311 and Daredevil Annual Vol. 1, #9. Calypso next appeared in Web of Spider-Man Vol. 1, #109-110 and Spider-Man Annual 1997, and was killed off in a storyline that spanned The Spectacular Spider-Man Vol. 1, #249-253.

Fictional character biography[edit]

Calypso is a nameless voodoo priestess of Haitian nationality.[2] She was a psychopathic woman who was associated with Kraven the Hunter. Calypso seemed to enjoy driving Kraven into fits of rage and furthering his hatred of Spider-Man which ultimately led to Kraven's suicide in the "Kraven's Last Hunt" storyline.[3][4]

When artist Todd McFarlane started writing the new Spider-Man comic in 1990, his opening five-issue story arc "Torment" featured Calypso as the main antagonist, whom McFarlane transformed into a dangerous threat for Spider-Man.[5] The explanation for Calypso's supernatural powers was the sacrifice of her younger sister. She used her abilities to hold Lizard in her grasp and the two nearly succeeded in murdering Spider-Man. However, the webslinger managed to beat them both and Calypso is apparently killed.[6]

Calypso resurfaces abducting Haitian refugees, turning some into zombie slaves and selling the rest back to her homeland's government. Her actions bring her into conflict with Daredevil and his Infinity War doppelganger, Hellspawn.[7] Calypso briefly enthralls Daredevil, but he is able to break free of her control, and she seemingly dies yet again when the spirits of those she turned into zombies overwhelm her.[8] Cheating death once more, Calypso flees to New Orleans, where her obsession with necromancy leads her to the resting place of Simon Garth, a self-aware zombie. Reviving Garth, Calypso tests his abilities and pits him against Hellspawn, though he eventually breaks free of her control and wanders off, leaving one of his Amulets of Damballah with Calypso.[9]

Calypso subsequently breaks into the Vault and attempts to make the incarcerated Lizard her servant again, but he resists and mauls her.[10][11] The Amulet of Damballah, which Calypso transferred her soul into while dying, ends up in the possession of Glory Grant, who Calypso possesses. Despite interference from Spider-Man, Garth, and Shotgun, Calypso is successfully able to exhume her own corpse and revive herself with the Amulet of Damballah.[12]

Commanding a squad of savages, she later attacks Spider-Man and Alyosha Kravinoff, the son of the original Kraven the Hunter. Desiring revenge for losing Sergei, she uses her powers to drive Spider-Man and Alyosha into fighting each other. Spider-Man and Alyosha fight off her spell, and shared a handshake. Alyosha says that he will hold Calypso at his mansion, so the villainess can tell him about his long-lost father. However, Alyosha kills Calypso instead.[13][14][15][16][17]

Powers and abilities[edit]

Calypso was well-versed in the religion and practice of voodoo. She often used voodoo drums, potions, and charms. Calypso used mind control, resurrection, and poisons.

Other versions[edit]

An issue of What If? which asked the question "What If Spider-Man Killed the Lizard?" had Calypso in it. When Spider-Man is forced to kill the Lizard in an alternate version of the "Torment" story-arc, Calypso approaches the Lizard's distraught son Billy Connors and offers him the chance to get revenge on Spider-Man via a potion that will make him "just like daddy".[18]

In other media[edit]

Television[edit]

  • In the 1990s Spider-Man: The Animated Series, Calypso was initially introduced as a research scientist named Dr. Mariah Crawford (voiced by Susan Beaubian) who was engaged to Sergei Kravinoff before his mystic serum transformed him into Kraven the Hunter, who affectionately calls her "Calypso". She assisted Spider-Man in several episodes, most notably helping him develop a cure for the Man-Spider mutation. During a confrontation with Man-Spider, Dr. Crawford was shown to be familiar with the Punisher's backstory and persuaded him to help Kraven subdue the Man-Spider, allowing her to restore him back to normal. In the episode "The Return of Kraven", Mariah contacted an African plague and, in an effort to save her, Kraven injected her with the same serum that she used on him some time ago. However, upon their return to New York, this caused Mariah to mutate into a feral monster, with claws, green eyes, and lion-like ears, prompting Kraven to use the serum on himself to track her down. While Spider-Man initially mistakes Kraven for the one attacking people in Central Park, he learns the truth after subduing him, and Spider-Man and Black Cat ultimately help Kraven capture Calypso and administer a cure made by Dr. Curt Connors, which restores Mariah back to normal. Afterwards, Mariah and Kraven leave New York to be alone.
  • Calypso appears in the Spectacular Spider-Man episode "Destructive Testing", voiced by Angela Bryant.[19] She is Kraven's lover, and may or may not be a voodoo priestess. After receiving pictures of Spider-Man from a mysterious American friend, Calypso presents them to Kraven and encourages him to go to New York and hunt him. After Kraven's first defeat at Spider-Man's hands, she suddenly appears in a robe and offers to help him, but he refuses. After Kraven's second defeat, Calypso rescues him before he can be arrested, and they are contacted by Calypso's friend, revealed to be the Master Planner, who asks Kraven if he would like to "hunt in a pack".

Video games[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ DeFalco, Tom; Sanderson, Peter; Brevoort, Tom; Teitelbaum, Michael; Wallace, Daniel; Darling, Andrew; Forbeck, Matt; Cowsill, Alan; Bray, Adam (2019). The Marvel Encyclopedia. DK Publishing. p. 69. ISBN 978-1-4654-7890-0.
  2. ^ "Spiderfan.org".
  3. ^ Denny O'Neil (w), Alan Weiss (p), Janson, McLeod, Rubinstein, Wiacek and Milgrom (i), Bob Sharen (col), Mark Rogan (let), Allen Milgrom (ed). "To Salvage My Honor!" The Amazing Spider-Man #209 (October 1980), United States: Marvel Comics
  4. ^ Bill Mantlo (w), Bob Hall (p), Jim Mooney (i), Sharen (col), Novak (let), Tom DeFalco (ed). "The Heart is a Lonely Hunter" Peter Parker, The Spectacular Spider-Man #65 (April 1982), United States: Marvel Comics
  5. ^ Cowsill, Alan; Manning, Matthew K. (2012). Spider-Man Chronicle: Celebrating 50 Years of Web-Slinging. DK Publishing. p. 115. ISBN 978-0756692360.
  6. ^ Todd McFarlane (w), Todd McFarlane (p), Todd McFarlane (i), Bob Sharen, Todd McFarlane and Gregory Wright (col), Rick Parker (let), Jim Salicrup (ed). "Torment" Spider-Man #1-5 (August 1990 - December 1990), United States: Marvel Comics
  7. ^ Glenn Alan Herdling (w), Scott McDaniel (p), Bud Larosa (i), Max Scheele (col), Bill Oakley (let), Ralph Macchio (ed). "Devil Ge Rouge" Daredevil #310 (November 1992), United States: Marvel Comics
  8. ^ Glenn Alan Herdling (w), Scott McDaniel (p), Bud La Rosa (i), Max Scheele (col), Bill Oakley (let), Ralph Macchio (ed). "Soul Search" Daredevil #311 (December 1992), United States: Marvel Comics
  9. ^ Glenn Herdling (w), Scott McDaniel (p), Bud LaRosa (i), Max Scheele (col), Steve Dutro (let), Ralph Macchio (ed). "Resurrections" Daredevil Annual #9 (July 1993), United States: Marvel Comics
  10. ^ Terry Kavanagh (w), Alex Saviuk (p), Stephen Baskerville (i), Bob Sharen (col), Steve Dutro (let), Eric Fein (ed). "The Savaging Prelude - Death Becomes Her!" Web of Spider-Man #109 (February 1994), United States: Marvel Comics
  11. ^ Terry Kavanagh (w), Alex Saviuk (p), Stephen Baskerville (i), Bob Sharen (col), Steve Dutro (let), Eric Fein (ed). "The Savaging Part 1 - Final Sanction" Web of Spider-Man #110 (March 1994), United States: Marvel Comics
  12. ^ Glenn Herdling (w), Shawn McMannus (p), Shawn McMannus (i), John Kalisz (col), RS/Comicraft/KS (let), Ralph Macchio (ed). "Dead Men Walking" Spider-Man '97 #1 (March 1997), United States: Marvel Comics
  13. ^ J.M. DeMatteis and Mark Bernard (w), Luke Ross (p), Dan Green (i), John Kalisz (col), Richard Starkings and Comicraft/KS (let), Ralph Macchio (ed). "Into the Light" The Spectacular Spider-Man #249 (September 1997), United States: Marvel Comics
  14. ^ J.M. DeMatteis and Mark Bernard (w), Luke Ross (p), Dan Green (i), John Kalisz (col), Richard Starkings and Comicraft/KS (let), Ralph Macchio (ed). "Into the Light" The Spectacular Spider-Man #249 (September 1997), United States: Marvel Comics
  15. ^ J.M. DeMatteis (w), Luke Ross (p), Dan Green and Al Milgrom (i), John Kalisz (col), Richard Starkings and Comicraft/KS (let), Ralph Macchio (ed). "Citizen Osborn!" The Spectacular Spider-Man #250 (October 1997), United States: Marvel Comics
  16. ^ J.M. DeMatteis (w), Mike Deodato (p), Al Milgrom (i), John Kalisz (col), Richard Starkings and Comicraft's Kiff Scholl (let), Ralph Macchio (ed). "Son of the Hunter! Part 2" The Spectacular Spider-Man #252 (December 1997), United States: Marvel Comics
  17. ^ John Marc DeMatteis (w), Luke Ross (p), Dan Green (i), John Kalisz (col), Richard Starkings and Comicraft's Kiff Scholl (let), Ralph Macchio (ed). "Son of the Hunter! Part 3" The Spectacular Spider-Man #253 (January 1998), United States: Marvel Comics
  18. ^ Simon Furman (w), Dane McCart (p), Dane McCart (i), Mark Bernardo (col), Janice Chiang (let), Rob Tokar (ed). "What If Spider-Man Killed the Lizard?" What If? v2, #53 (10 September 1993), United States: Marvel Comics
  19. ^ Comics Continuum by Rob Allstetter: Monday, January 21, 2008

External links[edit]

Kravinoff family tree
Sonya SmerdyakovaNikolai KravinovAnna Makarova KravinovaAleksandra NikolaevnaMikhail Aleksei Nikolaevich
Dmitri Anatoly Nikolayevich Smerdyakov
The Chameleon
Calypso Ezili
The Witch of Kraven
Sergei Nikolaevich Kravinoff (né Kravinov)
Kraven the Hunter
The Unhuntable Sergei
Aleksandra "Sasha" Kravinova (nee Nikolaevna)Unnamed Sisters
Xraven
The Hunter X[n 1]
Alexei Sergeevich "Alyosha" Kravinoff
Kraven the Hunter
Nedrocci "Ned" TannengardenThe Sons of Kraven[n 2]Anastasia "Ana" Tatiana Kravinova
Kraven the Hunter
Vladimir "Vlad" Kravinoff
The Grim Hunter
Son of the Hunter
Sergei Kravinoff II
The Last Son of Kraven
[n 2]
Notes:
  1. ^ Clone of Kraven created by Mr. Sinister, featuring the DNA of the X-Men Cyclops, Marvel Girl, the Iceman, the Angel, and the Beast, as well as a sample of of the Carnage symbiote.
  2. ^ a b "Hunted" established 87 such clones of Kraven the Hunter to exist, until all are killed by one of their number, dubbed "The Last Son of Kraven" and heir to his father's identity.