Eli Bradley as Patriot.
Cover to Young Avengers Special #1 (2005).
Art by Jim Cheung
|First appearance||Young Avengers #1 (April 2005)|
|Created by||Allan Heinberg
|Alter ego||Elijah "Eli" Bradley|
|Team affiliations||Young Avengers
"Secret Avengers" (Civil War)
|Notable aliases||Lieutenant America|
|Abilities||Enhanced strength, speed, agility, stamina, senses, healing and endurance
Carries triangular shield and metallic throwing stars
Patriot (Jeffrey Mace)
The first Patriot, Jeffrey Mace, created by writer Ray Gill and artist Bill Everett, debuted in The Human Torch # 4 (Spring 1941; numbered #3 on cover). He was a reporter who became a costumed adventurer after seeing Captain America in action, and was later a member of the World War II superhero team the Liberty Legion. The Patriot himself became the third Captain America.
Patriot (Eli Bradley)
The second Marvel Universe character to use the name Patriot debuted in Young Avengers #1 (April 2005): Eli Bradley, grandson of Isaiah Bradley, the black Captain America. Isaiah had received his powers (in the limited series Truth: Red, White & Black) as part of an early Super Soldier Serum experiment tested on African-American men in an attempt to reproduce the formula lost after being used to turn Steve Rogers into Captain America. Eli's mother was conceived before Isaiah's involvement with the experiment, however, so Eli could not have inherited his grandfather's powers genetically.
When Iron Lad began his search for the next generation of Avengers, he came to the Bradley household in search of Isaiah's son Josiah (Josiah X of The Crew). However, Josiah had been missing for several months, and Iron Lad met Eli instead. Eli claimed to have gained superpowers through an emergency blood transfusion from his grandfather, but this was untrue. He later gained his powers artificially with Mutant Growth Hormone (MGH), an illegal street drug that causes brief periods of superhuman abilities. MGH has been demonstrated to promote irascibility in individuals. Writer Allan Heinberg has stated that Bradley's drug usage is based on his own history, stating
|“||Since I had personally had a recent (and regrettable) experience with steroids, steroid use was something I wanted to write about. For better or worse, Eli's race was never a factor in those storytelling decisions, and I hope that by the end of this arc, Eli's story will be an inspiring one to all our readers.||”|
Patriot became a founding member of the Young Avengers. The public believed his costume resembled that of Captain America's 1940s sidekick, Bucky, but he revealed that his costume is a redesign of his grandfather's. He has an adversarial relationship with teammate Hawkeye, who nonetheless gave him Captain America's original star-spangled triangular shield.
When the truth about Eli's lack of superpowers was revealed, Eli quit the team. He returned after Hulkling was kidnapped by the Super-Skrull, and the other Young Avengers convinced him he was the only one of them capable of leading the team, even without his powers. Patriot was later gravely wounded by a Kree warrior when he jumped in front of a blast meant for Captain America, and received a blood transfusion from his grandfather, Isaiah, which granted him the abilities afforded by the Super Soldier serum.
Eli joined Captain America's Secret Avengers during the "Civil War" storyline. Patriot led his team to assist the Runaways after they were attacked by the government. The Young Avengers and the Runaways worked together when two of their members were captured, and the Runaways decided to stay out of the mix in the war. Patriot managed to keep most of his team together, but Stature decided to join Iron Man's side.
Eli later seeks out the Winter Soldier (whom he had earlier met during the Civil War) to discuss the meaning of being a patriot at a time when he disagrees with registration and much of the way America is being run, and the two have a heartfelt chat about America as an idea and about the original Patriot, Jeffrey Mace.
During the "Secret Invasion" storyline, Eli and the other Young Avengers were the first team to respond to the Skrull invasion of Manhattan. Despite their valiant efforts, and the aid of the Initiative cadets, they are all beaten. However, they are saved by the timely arrival of Nick Fury and the Secret Warriors and help Earth's heroes defeat the Skrull invaders.
During the "Dark Reign" storyline, Eli was outraged when Norman Osborn formed his "official" team of Avengers and even more so when he announced a new team of Young Avengers. Eli's Young Avengers confront the latter and demand that they either join the first team of Young Avengers, or find another name for themselves. Near the end of the issue Hawkeye (Kate Bishop) admits her love for Eli after he breaks his hand, to which he responds 'I may break my hand everyday.', making their relationship clear after a few months of dating.
Eli appears alongside the other Young Avengers in Avengers: Children's Crusade. He ultimately leaves the group during the aftermath, feeling guilty for preventing the Scarlet Witch from undoing the near extinction of mutantkind she had caused.
Eli is later mentioned in Gillen's Volume 2 of Young Avengers when Tommy Shepherd confirms the Not-Patriot is an impostor after getting off the phone with Eli's mother, remarking Eli is still in Arizona and hasn't left his bed in two weeks. It is still unknown to why he's been bedridden.
Powers, abilities, and equipment
While secretly using his specially concocted MGH formula, Eli possessed agility, strength, speed, endurance, and reaction-time superior to that of normal Super Soldiers like his grandfather and Captain America, but at a heavy physical and mental cost. After receiving a blood transfusion from his grandfather, Eli developed genuine Super Soldier abilities where his strength, stamina, speed, reflexes, agility, durability, bulletproof skin, and healing factor and senses are super human. In Civil War #2, Eli appears to possess the full physical abilities of a Super Soldier. He is able to outrun a helicopter, shrug off a hail of tranquilizer darts, jump a hundred feet through the air, and survive a massive explosion. Patriot carries a replica of Captain America's original, star-spangled, triangular shield, similar to the unpainted one originally carried into battle by his grandfather Isaiah. He also carries white metallic throwing stars patterned after those on the American flag.
Exiles: Days of Then and Now
Avengers: The Children's Crusade
Eli briefly appears in a possible future timeline as part of a new group of Avengers seen in the Children's Crusade event. Eli has succeeded Steve Rogers and become the new Captain America, and fights crime alongside his wife Samantha, the new Falcon. Their son Steve is also a member of the Avengers as the new Bucky.
In other media
- The Eli Bradley incarnation of Patriot appears in Marvel: Ultimate Alliance 2 voiced by Ogie Banks. He appears as a supporter for the Anti-Registration Side and a boss for the Pro-Registration Side. When the player chooses the Pro-Registration Side, Patriot busts in, dissatisfied with the player's choice and fights the player. Upon his defeat, Patriot is arrested by S.H.I.E.L.D. agents. The heroes on the Pro-Registration side later fight him again alongside Firestar at the Geffen-Meyer Chemical Plant.
- The Jeffrey Mace incarnation appears on Agents of Shield, played by Jason O'Mara. He appears in Season 4 in his civilian guise as an ex-hero who is appointed as the new Director of Shield after the events of Season 3 and Captain America: Civil War. In episode 4x02 "Meet the New Boss" he demonstrates a level of invulnerability and refers to himself both as "Inhuman" and as a former superhero.
- Grand Comics Database: The Human Torch #4, with cover blowup here Comics.org
- Brokenfrontier.com Archived May 9, 2006, at the Wayback Machine.
- Young Avengers #11–12
- Elijah Bradley's profile Marvel.com
- Winter Soldier: Winter Kills #1
- Young Avengers Presents #1
- Secret Invasion #3–7
- Dark Reign: Young Avengers #2
- Avengers: Children's Crusade #9
- Young Avengers Vol. 2
- Civil War #2
- Exiles: Days of Then and Now
- Avengers: The Children's Crusade – Young Avengers #1
- "Marvel: Ultimate Alliance 2 – E3 09: Exclusive Villains Trailer". GameTrailers. May 29, 2009. Retrieved 2009-05-29.