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Moondragon

By Mike McDermott

[Note: this profile dates from its original appearance on this site and does not reflect any info or events from the Annihilation mini series or Guardians of the Galaxy comic.]

When she was three years old, Heather Douglass and her parents were driving back to L.A. after a short vacation. They saw in the sky a scout ship belonging to the mad Titan named Thanos. In order to prevent them from telling anyone what they saw, he attacked their car, forcing it off the road, and killing both of Heather’s parents. Heather was the only survivor of the crash. She was rescued by Mentor, ruler of Titan, and Thanos’ father who opposed his son’s violent activities. Mentor took Heather back to Titan, where she was placed in the Shao-Lom monastery. She was raised by the monks, and taught their extensive physical and mental disciplines, as well as helping her develop her latent psionic abilities. She grew up to become an accomplished athlete, martial artist and geneticist.

Upon reaching adulthood, she took the name Moondragon, and joined in the fight against Thanos. This fight brought her into the company of the Avengers, whom she briefly joined. Being raised apart from humanity, and having attained physical and mental perfection, Moondragon considered herself a goddess, and superior to most of her teammates. Her somewhat arrogant attitude prevented her from fully fitting in with the team, and she stayed with them only a short time, although she remains an ally.

During her time with the Avengers, Moondragon learned she had her physical and mental training had been part of preparing her for the role of the Celestial Madonna. The Celestial Madonna was to be a perfect human woman who would mate with the perfect plant-being and become the mother to the Celestial Messiah, who would herald in a new golden age for the universe. Moondragon was one of two women who were groomed for this role. The other was the Avenger known as Mantis. Although the two of them possessed equal training and skill, Moondragon was found to be lacking in humanity, so Mantis was chosen instead.

Moondragon’s had a tumultuous career as a superhero, and was even briefly a villain, when she was corrupted into imposing her will on others “for the greater good”. She even enslaved the entire population of an alien world, but was defeated by the Avengers. She was eventually freed from the corrupting influence, and has since made every effort to atone for her past mistakes.

More recently, she returned to Los Angeles to help train the new Captain Marvel, to properly control his cosmic awareness. During her training of Captain Marvel, she also got to know his friend Marlo Chandler Jones. When it was revealed that Marlo had developed a potentially dangerous ability known as the “death wish”, Heather began training Marlo to safely control this new ability. Heather and Marlo became close during this process, and even shared a passionate kiss, which came as a shock to both women. Although Moondragon had past relationships with men, they were lacking any real emotion and were mostly a means to an end for her. Marlo was the first person whom Heather really made an emotional connection with. Marlo explained the situation to her husband, and she and Moondragon began to explore their new relationship.

They spent a few happy months together, but eventually Marlo decided she wanted to return to her husband. Moondragon understood, and they agreed to remain friends always.

At this time, Marlo and Moondragon were targeted by the Magus, an evil sorcerer who is an enemy of Captain Marvel. Marvel’s younger sister, Phyla, was sent to bodyguard Marlo while he went into the future to deal with the Magus’ schemes elsewhere. Moondragon was gravely injured fighting the Magus, and he saved her life, to make her indebted to him so that he could continue to manipulate and control her in the future. During his time travelling, Captain Marvel saw a distant future where Moondragon was a faithful servant of the Magus.

In the present day, after the Magus was defeated for now, Moondragon moved out of the apartment once her relationship with Marlo ended. She also told Marlo and Rick that Marlo’s attraction to her was the result of the Magus’ manipulations; that he had been stimulating emotional responses out of her to make her easier to manipulate, and that due to her telepathic powers, that spilled over and affected Marlo as well.

However, this was simply a story Moondragon came up with in order to allow Marlo to find happiness again with Rick, without their brief affair complicating matters. Phyla overheard the story, and told Moondragon that she knew it was a lie–and that she found that noble sacrifice to be very attractive. She apparently became attracted to Moondragon while helping protect Marlo, and now that Moondragon was single, wanted to pursue a relationship with her. Moondragon was interested, and they were lasted seen heading off together into a spatial portal into an unknown adventure.

Moondragon has had a number of past involvements with men, but they all were lacking any emotional connection. She once unsuccessfully pursued Quasar as her “perfect mate”. That was more about conceiving a child rather than any kind of relationship.

Moondragon’s recently revealed lesbianism possibly puts her mentoring of Patsy Walker, the Avenger known as Hellcat, in a new light. Like Marlo, Patsy was an attractive, brave red head. When Moondragon first left the Avengers, she took Patsy with her and trained her. While it has never been suggested that there was any kind of romantic relationship between the two, the physical similarities between Patsy and Marlo does raise a few questions.

As a very powerful psionic Moondragon is very capable of projecting her thoughts to others, reading other people’s thoughts and even taking control of their minds. She also has telekinetic abilities, allowing herself to fly, and move objects with her mind. She can also project bursts of pure mental force, or create a Her body is trained to ultimate human perfection, and she is a master of martial arts.

Moondragon has served as a priestess, and as a superhero she has been affiliated with the Avengers, Defenders, Infinity Watch and most recently the Guardians of the Galaxy. On Earth she was based in Los Angeles, New York, and Colorado. Off Earth she as was located on Titan and the Knowhere, a space station situated in the head of a dead Celestial.

Created by Bill Everett, Mike Friedrich, and George Tuska. Her first appearance is in Iron Man #54 (vol 1) and her sexuality is shown in Captain Marvel #32 (vol 3).

Art by Phil Jimenez from the 2021 Pride variant cover to Guardians of the Galaxy.

See the entries for Phyla-Vell and Quasar.

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