Real Name: Jason Pierce Roland
Identity/Class: Magic empowered human
Occupation: Soul-reaper; former agent of Bloodbath & Satannish, actor
Group Membership: None;
former leader of Lethal Legion, Night Shift (Brothers Grimm, Dansen Macabre, Digger, Gypsy Moth, Misfit, Needle, Tatterdemalion, Tick-Tock)
Affiliations: X-Factor Investigations (Longshot, M/Monet St. Croix, Layla Miller, Multiple Man/Jamie Madrox, Polaris/Lorna Dane, Rictor, Shatterstar, Siryn, Wolfsbane);
former lover of Stella Houston;
former employee of Mammoth Studios
Enemies: Avengers West Coast (Hawkeye/Clint Barton, Iron Man/Tony Stark, Living Lightning, Mockingbird/H'rpra, Spider-Woman/Julia Carpenter, U.S. Agent/John Walker, War Machine/James Rhodes, Wonder Man), Bloodbath, Mammoth Studios
Known Relatives: Sally Monroe-Roland (ex-wife, deceased), Terry Roland (son)
Aliases: The Demon that Devoured Hollywood
Place of Birth: Westmore, Vermont
Base of Operations: Los Angeles, California;
formerly Satannish's Hell
First Appearance: (Roland) Tower of Shadows#5 (May, 1970); (Hangman) Avengers West Coast#76 (November, 1991)
Weight: 280 lbs.
Eyes: Blue; formerly brown
Hair: Blond; formerly brown
Powers/Abilities: As Hangman, Roland possessed magically enhanced strength, durability, etc. He was strong enough to go head-to-head with Wonder Man. His rope was also magically enhanced, making it virtually indestructible. He could also levitate his rope and climb it without it being attached to anything. He was in almost constant communication with Satannish, who could enhance his powers as needed.
(Tower of Shadows#5) - Roland was originally a Hollywood actor seeking to make it big.
(X-Factor III#226 (fb) - BTS) - At some point Jason Roland married Sally Monroe. Sally eventually divorced from Jason and sued him for cheating on her with Stella Houston. She apparently kept her pregnancy with Jason's child secret and went underground after giving birth to their son Terry.
(Tower of Shadows#5) - Unable to achieve fame or fortune any other way, he made a deal with a make-up artist claiming to be an emissary of the devil: the old "soul-in-exchange-for-success" trick. The man made Roland into an extremely convincing monstrous form for the film "The Demon that Devoured Hollywood," which made him a complete success. Roland sought to break the deal and threatened the life of the make-up artist, but found after the last day of shooting was over that he could not remove the make-up and was trapped in monstrous form. He was last seen screaming and fleeing the set.
(Avengers West Coast#77 (fb) ) - Roland hid out for years, before finally, in desperation he called out to the demon with whom he had originally made a deal. The demon revealed itself as Satannish and returned him to his normal form with enhanced physical powers in exchange for his assistance in a plot.
(Avengers West Coast#76-79) - Mammoth Studios was beginning a remake of Roland's old movie. The Hangman appeared and threatened everyone involved, driving off several actors and staff. Hangman allied himself with Nightshift, and convinced them to summon Satannish in order to gain enhanced power for themselves. Not believing they were actually risking their own souls, they did so.
Wonder Man and the Avengers West Coast came to the set of the movie and attempted to allow it to finish. However, the violent energies given off by their battle against Night Shift, as well as a side-plot used to lure Dr. Strange to another dimension, allowed Satannish to manifest himself in the Earth dimension. His plot was planned for all who watched the film of the battle to lose their souls to Satannish. However, Agatha Harkness assisted the Avengers by summoning Dr. Strange to oppose Satannish. The Avengers stopped the filming while Dr. Strange convinced the Night Shift that their souls were in jeopardy, causing them to reject Satannish's power. Night Shift joined with the Avengers and Strange in attacking Satannish. As a result, Satannish lost his foothold in the Earth dimension and was banished back to his realm of Hell. Satannish punished Roland by taking his soul with him, leaving him alive, but a mindless husk.
(Avengers West Coast#98-100) - Later, Satannish revived Roland as the Hangman to assist him in another plot. This time, Satannish stole the souls of four of mankind's most heinous murderers from the realm of Mephisto in order to form a new Lethal Legion. Satannish had Hangman lead this Legion to successfully abduct Mockingbird back to his realm, knowing that the Avengers West Coast would follow, and that he could gain their souls as well. The Avengers did follow, and Hangman and the Legion defeated them, trapping them within the walls of Satannish's realm. However, angered that Satannish had stolen some of his souls, Mephisto assisted the Avengers in their journey to the realm of Satannish and engaged Satannish himself. This distraction allowed the Avengers to free themselves. Satannish was forced to withdraw the enhancements to the Legion and the Hangman in order to use his full strength against Mephisto. This allowed the Avengers to easily defeat them, and they managed to escape back to Earth. The souls of the Lethal Legion were destroyed when Mephisto and Satannish both struggled to keep them. Mephisto sought the souls of the Avengers to make up for the ones he had lost, and he managed to gain the soul of Mockingbird before the Avengers' portal to his realm closed. The fate of Roland was not stated, but I'm guessing Satannish felt a need for some punishment.
(X-Factor III#227 (fb) - BTS) - Hangman escaped from Hell, but was found by the freelance demon Bloodbath, who ordered Hangman to reap 500 souls already slated for damnation for him. Hangman resisted, but Bloodbath blackmailed him into serving by using Jason's ex-wife and the son he never knew about as leverage...
(X-Factor III#226 (fb) - BTS) - ...though Bloodbath promised to Jason he would not hurt Sally or his son Terry...
(X-Factor III#227 (fb) - BTS) - ...if Jason did as he was told...
(X-Factor III#224.1 - BTS) - ...Bloodbath murdered Jason's ex-wife Sally and abducted his son Terry...
(X-Factor III#227 (fb) - BTS) - ...keeping the latter as leverage at Imperial Studios. He told Hangman if he entered the studio to rescue Terry he would kill the boy instantly.
(X-Factor III#225 - BTS) - The police called X-Factor Investigations because Sally had their card on her when she was killed. They came to investigate her murder, but ended up talking to her reanimated corpse, which was later possessed by Bloodbath himself until the demon departed and Sally dropped dead again.
(X-Factor III#226) - Hangman lynched member of two rival gangs in Los Angeles and disappeared before the police arrived.
(X-Factor III#226 - BTS) - Madrox and Longshot found Jason's Screen Actor Guild's card at the murder scene of his ex-wife. Considering the surname Madrox guessed Jason was Terry's father. At X-Factor Investigations Rictor looked up Jaon to learn about his acting career and his divorce from Sally and hacked into the Avengers' database to learn about his supernatural powers. While Rictor told Madrox everything he had found on Jason Roland, Pip used his cosmic powers to find him at the Fourth Street Bridge in Los Angeles.
(X-Factor III#226) - X-Factor Investigations searched for Hangman at the bridge. Hangman tried to kill Madrox, but his dupes, Wolfsbane and Strong Guy came to his aid. When Stron Guy mentioned Sally's Hangman stopped fighting and let Madrox go. Shocked that Bloodbath had broken his promise not to hurt Stella or his son, Hangman told X-Factor about the demon, who would kill them all if Hangman didn't follow his orders.
(X-Factor III#227) - Hangman led X-Factor Investigations to Imperial Studios where his son was kept hostage by Bloodbath. He explained how he was forced by the demon to serve him after escaping Hell himself and that X-Factor were free to save his son because Bloodbath was very specific about following his own rules and only Hangman was forbidden to enter the studio to save Terry. Before entering the studio Longshot asked Hangman if he had anything to do with actor David Carradine's (see comments) death, but Hangman assured him he didn't.
Wolfsbane and a dupe of Madrox, who got shot by Terry, saved the boy while the rest of the team fought Bloodbath.
(X-Factor III#228) - Wolfsbane sent Terry out the front gate to meet with his father while X-Factor kept fighting Bloodbath. Reunited with his son Jason wanted to leave with him at first, but his son, who was always told by his mother that Jason was a super hero, inspired him to aid X-Factor against Bloodbath. Hangman caught Bloodbath with his indestructible noose and watched as Shatterstar decapitated the demon, who was then exorcised and presumably sent back to Hell by Layla Miller when he possessed Madrox's corpse.
Comments: Originally created Roy Thomas and Barry Smith, Hangman created by Roy and Dann Thomas and David Ross.
Now this is what I call good utilization of an obscure character. The paper-thin connection that brought Roland back may have been that his original story was told in a book that was often narrated by Digger (Roderick Krupp), a poor man's Crypt-Keeper, who went on to become a member of Night Shift.
Roland is a prisoner of Satannish's realm, and unless he completely destroyed his soul as punishment, could probably make a return appearance some day.
Roland showed no remorse or even interest when Axe of Violence slew his former lover, Stella Houston.
David Carradine was famous for his role as Caine on the TV series Kung Fu and in later years as Bill in Kill Bill. He died in 2009.
Hangman got in OHotMU Horror 2005 his own entry.
Profile by Snood. X-Factor update by Markus Raymond.
Hangman is not to be confused with:
(Avengers West Coast#99 (fb) - BTS) - Stella Houston was an actress. She became involved with Jason Roland near the end of his Horror movie career.
(X-Factor III#226 (fb) - BTS) - Jason cheated on his wife Sally with Stella Houston, ending his marriage.
(Tower of Shadows#5) - Stella was in a romantic relationship with Jason Roland. One day after filming she waited for him outside his dressing room with reporters, but he wouldn't come out.
(Avengers West Coast#76 (fb) - BTS) - Stella was unaware Jason fled the studio in full demon gear and she never saw him again.
(Avengers West Coast#76) - The Avengers West Coast met with Stella at her beach house to ask her a few questions about Jason Roland and his whereabouts, but she couldn't help them. Spider-Woman gave Stella the AWC's number before Stella showed out the heroes. Outside they were attacked by Hangman and the Night Shift and Spider-Woman told Stella to flee back inside, which she did.
(Avengers West Coast#78) - Stella called Spider-Woman and asked the heroine to meet with her right away.
(Avengers West Coast#79) - At the beach house Spider-Woman met with Stella, who told her that after seeing Hangman on TV, she was sure that it was Jason Roland. Stella came with Spider-Woman when they saw Hangman threaten the a film crew and demanded the Avengers West Coast to come to the Griffith Observatory, so he and the Night Shift could defeat them live on TV. On set Stella approached Hangman and tried to stop him from killing the AWC. He hit her after revealing that he had no use for her after giving his soul to Satannish. After Satannish was banished back to Hell he punished Roland by taking his soul with him, leaving him alive, but a mindless husk. Stella comforted the catatonic Jason.
(Avengers West Coast#99) - Axe of Violence slew Stella at her beach house in front of War Machine and Spider-Woman.
--Tower of Shadows#5 ([Avengers West Coast#99 (fb)], [X-Factor III#226 (fb)], Tower of Shadows#5, Avengers West Coast#76, 78-79, 99
images: (without ads)
Avengers West Coast#76, p5, pan6 (Hangman main image)
X-Factor III#228, p11, pan6 (head shot, current appearance)
Tower of Shadows#5, Cover (Jason Roland in mask)
Avengers West Coast#79, p4, pan6 (Stella Houston)
Tower of Shadows#5 (May, 1970) - Roy Thomas (writer), Barry Windsor-Smith (pencils), Dan Adkins (inks), Stan Lee (editor)
Avengers West Coast#76-79 (November, 1991 - February, 1992) - Roy & Dann Thomas (writers), Dave Ross (pencils), Tim Dzon (inks), Nel Yomtov (editor)
Avengers West Coast#98-100 (September-November, 1993) - Roy Thomas (writer), Dave Ross (pencils), Tim Dzon (inks), Nel Yomtov (editor)
X-Factor III#224.1 (November, 2011) - Peter David (writer), Valentine de Landro (pencils), Pat Davidson (inks), Daniel Ketchum (editor)
X-Factor III#225-228 (November, 2011 - February, 2012) - Peter David (writer), Leonard Kirk (artist), Daniel Ketchum (editor)
Last updated: 10/21/16
Any Additions/Corrections? please let me know.
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