Mayhem (comics)

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Publication information
PublisherMarvel Comics
First appearance(as O'Reilly) Cloak and Dagger #1 (Oct 1983)
(as Mayhem) Cloak and Dagger Vol. 2 #5 (Mar 1986)
Created byBill Mantlo
Rick Leonardi
In-story information
Alter egoBrigid O'Reilly
PartnershipsCloak and Dagger
  • Breathes toxic gas that produces multiple effects
  • Retractable talons
  • Levitation

Mayhem (Brigid O'Reilly) is a fictional character appearing in American comic books published by Marvel Comics.

Brigid O’Reilly makes her first live appearance in the Marvel Cinematic Universe television series Cloak & Dagger played by Emma Lahana. However after a Darkforce accident, both of her personalities split into two forms. One of the forms has a dark personality who was created from the Darkforce energy, which Tyrone/Cloak controls, who has its own mind and darker personality named Mayhem.

Publication history[edit]

The character of detective Brigid O'Reilly first appeared in Cloak and Dagger #1 (Oct 1983), and was created by Bill Mantlo and Rick Leonardi. She subsequently appeared in issues #2-4 (November 1983-January 1984) of the same series, and issues #1-5 (July 1985-March 1986) of the second Cloak and Dagger series.

In Cloak and Dagger Vol. 2 #5 (Mar 1986), Brigid underwent a drastic transformation and became known as Mayhem. The character subsequently appeared, as Mayhem, in Cloak and Dagger #6-9 (May–November 1986), Strange Tales #13-15 (April–June 1988), #19 (October 1988), The Mutant Misadventures of Cloak and Dagger #1-2 (October, December 1988), #5-6 (June, August 1989), #8 (November 1989), #10-18 (February 1990-June 1991), Web of Spider-Man Annual #9 (1993) and #10 (1994).

Mayhem received an entry in the Official Handbook of the Marvel Universe Deluxe Edition #8. However, some of the color plates were reversed in that issue, and those pages, including Mayhem, were printed correctly in issue #9.

Fictional character biography[edit]

Brigid O'Reilly was a police detective in Manhattan, when she learned that Cloak and Dagger were attacking criminals in her precinct. At first she wanted to bring the pair to justice,[1] but eventually, she learned to trust the young crime-fighters.[2]

Later, she took a squad of police officers to investigate a warehouse belonging to the same pharmaceutical company that was responsible for giving Cloak and Dagger their powers. Some corrupt policemen, led by Roger Falcone, exposed the other police officers to a gas to asphyxiate them. With her dying breath, Brigid swore vengeance on Falcone. As Brigid lay dying, Cloak and Dagger found her, and though they were too late to save the other police, Cloak surrounded her and Dagger with his darkness, while Dagger tried to revive her with her light. When this appeared not to work, the pair abandoned her body to search for those responsible.[3]

Though Brigid O'Reilly died, she was reborn as Mayhem. In this new form, Mayhem helped Cloak and Dagger find and fight the corrupt police. She then killed Falcone as promised.[4] She is now herself a vigilante, showing no mercy to the drug dealers and other criminals she pursues.

Brigid was considered as a "potential recruit" for the Initiative program, according to Civil War: Battle Damage Report.[5]

Powers and abilities[edit]

Mayhem exudes a green, venomous gas from her pores that tends to surround her. If this gas enters another person's bloodstream, it will paralyze the person for an unknown amount of time. Hence, Mayhem attacks people by raking their skin with her talon-like fingernails so that the gas will enter their bloodstreams.

The gas can also act like a truth serum, forcing a victim of Mayhem to tell her the truth.

Dagger's "light-knives" dissipate upon contact with this gas.

Mayhem can levitate herself and fly.

Other version[edit]

In the Ultimate Marvel universe, Brigid O'Reilly is a NYPD officer who is hunting down teenage criminals Styx and Stone in an effort to trace the Serpent Skulls gang. Her partner, Terry Schreck, is critically injured and soon dies in the hospital.[6] She later speaks to her informant, Bart Rozum, before learning that Terry's body had disappeared from the morgue.[7]

In other media[edit]

Brigid O'Reilly appears in Marvel's Cloak & Dagger, which is set in the Marvel Cinematic Universe (MCU), portrayed by Emma Lahana.[8] O'Reilly is a detective who formerly worked in Harlem before moving to New Orleans.[9] She grows suspicious of her partner James Connors and seemingly gets confirmation after speaking with Tandy Bowen.[10] She soon allies with Tyrone Johnson who wants to avenge his brother by arresting Connors.[11] They are successful with having Connors admit his guilt, but O'Reilly discovers her boyfriend's body, presumably from Connors' connections.[12] To add insult to injury, Connors is released on suspension and proceeds to beat her up in front of other officers showing that everyone was against her.[13] O'Reilly teams back up with Tyrone to stop a dark and evil energy, called the Terror, from getting released by Roxxon. While aiding him, she is shot by Connors while getting exposed to the energy. She later emerges from the water with glowing green eyes.[14] In the second season, it is revealed that the green-tinged O'Reilly is a physical copy of Brigid who has all of her knowledge and memories but a weaker moral compass. In the opening episodes, "Mayhem" proceeds to kill a number of New Orleans underworld figures and later assumes Brigid's identity to take an investigation into her own hands. Tyrone later finds Brigid tied up at home then after they find Tandy they learn about Mayhem's existence.[15] The side effects of her exposure to the Terrors and being shot separated Brigid's agression which explains why the main Brigid can't shoot right. Mayhem starts looking for Connors where she even killed his partner who was there that night. Mina Hess' examination of Brigid proves her theory following an experiment with some rats. When it came to Dagger providing the distraction for Cloak to free the captive girls, Mayhem crashed the battle as Cloak used his powers to send her into the Darkforce Dimension. Once there, she runs into the corpse of Fuchs who asks about the pancakes she owes him.[16]


  1. ^ Cloak and Dagger #1
  2. ^ Cloak and Dagger #4
  3. ^ Cloak and Dagger Vol. 2 #1-4
  4. ^ Cloak and Dagger Vol. 2 #5
  5. ^ Anthony Flamini & Ronald Byrd (w), Scott Kolins (p), Scott Kolins (i). Civil War: Battle Damage Report 1 (March 2007), Marvel Comics
  6. ^ All-New Ultimates #1-2
  7. ^ All-New Ultimates #3
  8. ^ Highfill, Samantha (April 16, 2018). "Marvel's Cloak & Dagger: Jaime Zevallos and Emma Lahana's characters are revealed". Entertainment Weekly. Archived from the original on April 16, 2018. Retrieved April 16, 2018.
  9. ^ Ridgely, Charlie (June 28, 2018). "'Cloak & Dagger' Confirms Major Connection to 'Luke Cage'". Archived from the original on June 28, 2018. Retrieved June 28, 2018.
  10. ^ Hoar, Peter (director); Ariella Blejer and Dawn Kamoche (story); Peter Calloway (writer) (June 15, 2018). "Stained Glass". Marvel's Cloak & Dagger. Season 1. Episode 3. Freeform.
  11. ^ Russo-Young, Ry (director); Niceole R. Levy & Joe Pokaski (writer) (June 28, 2018). "Princeton Offense". Marvel's Cloak & Dagger. Season 1. Episode 5. Freeform.
  12. ^ Lopez, Alex Garcia (director); Christine Boylan & Jenny Klein (writer) (July 20, 2018). "Ghost Stories". Marvel's Cloak & Dagger. Season 1. Episode 8. Freeform.
  13. ^ Woolnough, Jeff (director); Niceole R. Levy & Peter Calloway (writer) (July 26, 2018). "Back Breaker". Marvel's Cloak & Dagger. Season 1. Episode 9. Freeform.
  14. ^ Yip, Wayne (director); Joe Pokaski (writer) (August 3, 2018). "Colony Collapse". Marvel's Cloak & Dagger. Season 1. Episode 10. Freeform.
  15. ^ Jeff Woolnough (director); Peter Calloway & Niceole R. Levy (writers) (April 4, 2019). "White Lines". Marvel's Cloak & Dagger. Season 2. Episode 2. Freeform.
  16. ^ Hastings, Matt (director); Kate Rorick & Marcus J. Guillory (writer) (April 11, 2018). "Shadow Selves". Marvel's Cloak & Dagger. Season 2. Episode 3. Freeform.

External links[edit]