Mad Jim Jaspers
|Mad Jim Jaspers|
Mad Jim Jaspers. Art by Alan Davis.
|Publisher||Marvel Comics (formerly Marvel UK)|
|First appearance||Marvel Superheroes #377 (September 1981)|
|Created by||Dave Thorpe and Alan Davis|
|Alter ego||Sir James Jaspers|
|Team affiliations||UK parliament|
The Hellfire Club
The Crazy Gang
|Notable aliases||The Reality Butcher, The Crooked Man|
Sir James Jaspers (aka Mad Jim Jaspers) is a fictional supervillain appearing in American comic books published by Marvel Comics. The character was created by Dave Thorpe and Alan Davis for the Captain Britain stories in Marvel UK comics and later developed by Alan Moore.
Jaspers was a British member of Parliament with a mutated brain that enabled him to alter reality; an unfortunate side effect of this power was that it quickly drove him mad once he began to use it on a larger scale. He led an anti-superhuman campaign so that he could play with the world without interference. His character design was based on the English comic actor Terry-Thomas.
Fictional character biography
Captain Britain first encounters Jaspers when he travels to an alternative temporal reality with Jackdaw. They interrupt a bank robbery being perpetrated by the "Crazy Gang", a criminal group themed around characters from Alice in Wonderland, with Jaspers taking the role of The Hatter.[volume & issue needed]
It is later revealed that before indulging in a life of crime, Jaspers was a member of Parliament who successfully campaigned for the outlawing of superheroes. He then created The Fury, a highly adaptable cyborg created to exterminate superheroes. Within two years all the superhumans of the world (many of them referencing classic British comic characters like Marvelman and the Steel Claw) had been killed by the Fury. The only surviving superhero of this world, Captain UK, had fled to Earth-616 and abandoned her heroic identity. The Fury was programmed not to kill Jaspers, who himself had the ability to warp reality to his will at the cost of his own sanity.[volume & issue needed]
The Fury is reactivated by Jaspers and kills both Captain Britain and Jackdaw. Captain Britain is then removed from Earth-238 by Merlyn and revived on Earth-616. The Fury, somehow detecting this, adapts itself to travel between realities.[volume & issue needed]
Saturnyne and her Avant Guard attempt to give Earth-238 "the Push", an evolutionary boost when Jaspers unleashes the Jaspers' Warp, a wave of unreality that affects everything in the continuity. Fearing contamination, Saturnyne's temporary replacement, Mandragon, destroys the Earth-238 continuity, and presumably Jaspers along with it.
Upon returning to his own reality, Captain Britain finds that another Sir James Jaspers is leading an anti-superhero campaign, with the aid of Henry Peter Gyrich and Sebastian Shaw (suggesting that Jaspers is a member of the Hellfire Club). Jaspers wins a landslide general election victory with his anti-superhero platform and becomes Prime Minister. Events mirror those of Earth-238 and Jaspers unleashes the "Jaspers' Warp" upon London. The Fury arrives on Earth-616 and attacks Jaspers after recognising that this Jaspers is not the same man as its creator. After a reality-warping battle, The Fury manages to kill Jaspers by teleporting the pair to the Earth-238 universe, where Jaspers has no reality to control and is powerless. The Fury, weakened by interdimensional travel, is destroyed by the one hero that had escaped from Earth-238, Captain UK. Saturnyne takes a sample of Jaspers' DNA with the intention of cloning him; the DNA is secretly destroyed by Merlyn's daughter, Roma.
Sir James Jaspers later appears as an anti-mutant prosecutor during the trial of Magneto. It is not stated whether this is the revived mutant Jaspers, a clone, or some lasting effect of the reality warp.
Some years later, a large-scale reality warp originating on Earth-616 results in the recreation of the exterminated Earth-616 Jaspers and Fury as a single combined being. It is unknown if Mad Jim Jaspers retains his mutant powers after the M-Day.[volume & issue needed] This return leads to the events of the mini-series, X-Men: Die by the Sword.[volume & issue needed]
A different alternate version of Jim Jaspers appears in Astonishing X-Men: Xenogenesis. In this version, he is a reality jumper and is described as a living Ghost Box. Every time he jumps from one reality to another, he spreads radiation throughout them, resulting in the creation of warpies. His home reality had been overrun with Furies who killed all the superpowered beings, with only Jaspers managing to escape. The Furies follow him and destroy each reality. Jaspers ends up on Earth-616 in Africa and causes the birth of warpies. After a hard fought battle, the Furies are defeated by the X-Men. The president of the African country where Jaspers had landed kills Jaspers in his sleep to eliminate any future threat.[volume & issue needed]
Powers and abilities
Mad Jim Jaspers has vast reality-warping powers. He can warp and disrupt the laws of physics to make entire universes unsuitable for life. During his battle with the Fury, Jaspers altered his own form to shapeshift into completely different lifeforms and even non-living objects while maintaining his own human mind. He reanimated his entire body after having been fried into an empty skeleton by the Fury. He has shown himself capable of resurrecting the dead and creating sentient lifeforms. However, his powers are seen to have limitations. Unlike some other reality warpers such as Franklin Richards, Marquis of Death and Scarlet Witch, Mad Jim Jaspers needs existing reality in order to make his powers function, as seen when the Fury took him outside the known universe, rendering him powerless.
Jaspers is one of the most powerful beings and mutants in the Marvel Universe. The less powerful Earth-238 version was able to warp his entire universe to such a degree that it became necessary to destroy that timeline completely just to stop the Jaspers' Warp from spreading to other universes. From what Merlyn hinted during his telepathic alert to Captain Britain, the more powerful Earth-616 Jaspers was capable of affecting multiple universes at once, and his power would continue to grow exponentially.
- The Daredevils 6 (1983)
- The Mighty World of Marvel 13 (1984)
- Uncanny X-Men 200 (1985)
- Uncanny X-Men 462 (2005)