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Dr Annabelle Riggs

Contributed by Mike McDermott

Annabelle Riggs is an archeologist, who was inspired as a child by the Indiana Jones movies. When mercenaries started stealing Asgardian artifacts from some of her archeological digs, Annabelle recruited the services of her friend, hero-for-hire Misty Knight. While surveying a mass Viking grave, Annabelle discovered an ancient Asgardian artifact which she unintentionally activated. The small statue began playing a strange song, which caused the Viking corpses to rise from the grave and attack Annabelle, Misty and the rest of the dig team. The song also summoned Valkyrie, the last of the Asgardian shieldmaidens, who joined in the fight. After Valkyrie saved her life from some zombie Vikings, Annabelle impulsively kissed her.

Once the battle was over, Valkyrie announced she was going to Asgard to consult the All-Mother about the incident. Annabelle declared she was going as well, since whatever was going on was connected to the raids on her museum’s artifacts. Valkyrie originally objected to the idea, but Annabelle insisted–threatening to dig up some other mystical artifact that would summon her back again if she tried to leave without her. Valkyrie was impressedwith Annabelle’s spirit, and had a mystical vision showing her that Annabelle was a potential shieldmaiden, so she agreed to take Annabelle and Misty with her.

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The heroes learned from the gods that the villain Caroline Le Fey was working on a spell to revive the evil Asgardian Doom Maidens. They joined forces with several other heroes to stop Le Fey, but were unable to prevent her from raising the Doom Maidens…and unlocking Valkyrie’s repressed memories that she was also a Doom Maiden, the Maiden of Rage! The heroes managed to defeat the other Doom Maidens, but Rage-Valkyrie knocked out all of the heroes until Annabelle was the only one left standing to oppose her. Although she knew that she didn’t stand a chance against Valkyrie, Annabelle bravely confronted her anyway. She appealed to Valkyrie’s true nature, to try and break through the rage clouding her mind. It worked, but not before the Rage persona lashed out and murdered Annabelle as a final act.

Valkyrie delivered Annabelle’s soul to Valhalla as one of the honoured dead, but Annabelle did not find the Norse afterlife to her liking. She did not have to endure it long however, since Valkyrie recruited the services of the sorceress Clea to restore Annabelle to life! The spell came with a price though, and now Annabelle and Valkyrie shared the same physical body with only one of them able to exist in corporeal form at a time. Annabelle joined Valkyrie and Misty in assembling an all-female team of Defenders, and she participates in their adventures when she isn’t required to trade places with Val. When the Defenders encountered a young woman named Ren Kimura who had just developed powers and discovered she was an Inhuman, Annabelle was the one who helped Ren to adapt to the changes she was going through. Ren joined the Defenders as well, and she and Annabelle soon became a couple.

Dr. Annabelle Riggs first appeared and was outed in Fearless Defenders #1 (2013). Created by Cullen Bunn and Will Sliney. Art by Sliney and Veronica Gandini from Fearless Defenders #1.

Please read Ren Kimura’s profile.

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July 9, 2021
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