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The second version of the Beetle armor on the cover of Thunderbolts #35.
Art by Mark Bagley.
|First appearance||(as Leila Davis) Deadly Foes of Spider-Man #1 (May 1991)
(as Hardshell) Lethal Foes of Spider-Man #1 (1993)
(as Beetle) Thunderbolts #48 (2001)
|Created by||Danny Fingeroth
|Alter ego||Leila Davis|
|Team affiliations||The Redeemers
|Notable aliases||Hardshell, Beetle|
|Abilities||Powered armor grants:
Superhuman strength and durability
Flight via artificial wings
Variety of weapon systems
Leila Davis is a fictional character, a supervillain and later costumed hero appearing in American comic books published by Marvel Comics. She first went by Hardshell and later as the second version of Beetle. She was primarily an enemy of Spider-Man.
Fictional character biography
Leila is introduced as the widow of the Ringer (Anthony Davis). After Anthony is manipulated by Abner Jenkins into a life of crime that included multiple conflicts with Spider-Man, he is eventually killed by the anti-hero Scourge. Leila vows revenge on all three. She joins the Sinister Syndicate team led by Jenkins, in order to get close to him. She also serves as the group's getaway driver.
Once Boomerang is captured by Spider-Man on the group's first mission, she began dating Speed Demon. Eventually, the Shocker engineers a breakout for Boomerang and the team fractures, with Boomerang, Rhino and Leila (using her husband's old weapons) battling the Beetle, Speed Demon and Hydro-Man in the middle of New York City.
After attempting to kill Beetle, Leila is disarmed by Spider-Man and arrested along with Jenkins and Boomerang.
Sometime later, she is paroled from prison and immediately returns to her old ways. Donning a new red and black suit of weaponized armor and referring to herself as "Hardshell", she allies with Boomerang, Rhino and the Vulture. The group becomes involved in a massive fight that also involves Stegron, Doctor Octopus, Swarm, the Answer, Jenkins and Spider-Man, with each party trying to gain control of an experimental gun. Spider-Man eventually stood victorious and most of the costumed criminals are taken into custody. Leila is teleported away by her husband Anthony, who had been turned into the cyborg Strikeback by the criminal organization A.I.M..
She reappears years later taking on the Thunderbolts team (which a reformed Jenkins helped found), ironically now referring to herself as the "Beetle". She is wearing a tank-like exoskeleton painted in the same paint scheme as both of Jenkins' previous Beetle costumes—a new iteration of the Beetle armor that Jenkins himself had designed while working for the Commission on Superhuman Activities.
As the second Beetle, Leila eventually joins the group known as the Redeemers, which includes former members of the Thunderbolts. When she true identity is revealed to the rest of her teammates, she tells them that her husband Anthony died some time earlier, his body breaking down due to his cyborg enhancements.
The group soon encounters the powerful super villain Graviton, and quickly into the fight he nonchalantly uses his gravity powers to crush the Beetle armor - with Leila inside - into a small cube, killing her instantly.
Powers and abilities
As Hardshell, Leila wore a powered suit which granted her superhuman and durability, and a variety of weapons.
As the second Beetle, her suit possessed artificial wings which allowed her to fly while also giving her superhuman strength and durability and different weapons.
In other media
- The Leila Davis version has a non-voiced cameo appearance on the Ultimate Spider-Man cartoon series. In the episode "Beetle Mania", she fights Iron Fist during the S.H.I.E.L.D. Trainees' imagination.
- 2005, the Leila Davis version of Beetle received an action figure in the "Spider-Man Classics" line, series 14.
- Thunderbolts #56 (2001)
- Deadly Foes of Spider-Man #1-4
- Lethal Foes of Spider-Man #1-4
- Thunderbolts vol.1 #48
- Thunderbolts vol.1 #50
- Thunderbolts vol.1 #54
- Thunderbolts vol.1 #56