Setup Menus in Admin Panel

Dr. Druid & Sepulchre

Contributed by Ronald Byrd

Doctor Druid’s (Anthony Ludgate) heroic career reaches back several decades, when the sorcerer known as the Ancient One awoke and augmented Druid’s innate mystic powers; relatively little about Druid’s long career has been revealed, although it is known that decades ago he led a group of adventurers called the Monster Hunters, and in modern times he has worked alongside various better known super-heroes, including Doctor Strange and the Avengers, although he betrayed the latter team due to the manipulation of the villainous Terminatrix. In recent years, while lecturing at the University of San Francisco, Druid met student Jillian Woods and sensed an innate psychic link between them, ultimately discovering that the two had been lovers centuries ago, in previous incarnations during the time of King Arthur, when a wandering Celtic alchemist fell in love with a Christian English noblewoman, only to be slain by her family. However, against expectations, it out that David was the English noblewoman and Jillian the male alchemist; this is a rather metaphysical variation of transgender identity, one that believers in reincarnation might say is common to most if not all people, but such an example has rarely arisen in comic book history.

Unfortunately, the pair’s modern-day incarnations ultimately fare little better than their earlier ones. When Jillian is accidentally slain by a mystic artifact’s power, Druid channels her soul into a new mystic body, granting her supernatural shadow-powers. Using first the name Shadowoman, then Sepulchre, Jillian aids Druid in repelling various threats, a responsibility that is increased when Druid is, against his will, granted the power to foresee upcoming mystical disasters, which he battles with the aid of periodic gatherings of “Secret Defenders.” However, Sepulchre grows resentful of her non-human existence, and after a particularly grueling clash, Druid fakes his own death in order to encourage her to start a new life free of additional mystic entanglements. Alas, he later becomes corrupted by either insanity or evil—actually, by “dark” writer Warren Ellis—and is ultimately slain by the half-demon Hellstorm, hardly a suitable end for such a veteran super-hero.

Throughout most of his career Doctor Druid’s super-powers consisted of telepathy, mesmerism, illusion-casting, psychokinesis, limited precognition, and the manipulation of the inherent mystic energies within certain objects; in his final, more dangerous incarnation he possessed stronger but less clearly defined magical powers. Sepulchre is composed of mystical “shadow-matter” which enables her to fly, project darkness, and alter her body to a limited extent.

Druid and Sepulchre are based in Boston. Druid has been an adventurer, occult expert, lecturer, author, former psychiatrist and explorer. Woods was also an adventurer, former graduate student and holder of various low-paying jobs. They were arguably outed in Secret Defenders #16.

Stan Lee and Jack Kirby created Dr Druid. Druid first appeared in Amazing Adventures #1 published in 1961, making the character Marvel’s first Silver Age hero. Originally Druid was named Dr Droom and the name was later changed to avoid confusion with Dr Doom. First appearance under the Dr Druid name occurred in Weird Wonder Tales #19 (December 1976).

Mark Gruenwald and Grant Miehm are Shadowoman’s creators. Shadowoman’s first appeareance is in Quasar #45 (April, 1993).

Dr Druid art from the cover of Avengers #296  by John Buscema and Tom Palmer. Shadowoman art from Thunderbolts #115 by Mike Deodato.

All rights reserved Marvel Comics.

July 11, 2021
© 2024 Gay League. Website design by Anton Kawasaki.