JEREMIAH

Real Name: Possibly Jeremiah

Identity/Class: Human mutant

Occupation: Religious zealot

Group Membership: None

Affiliations: The Innocents of God; worshipped Oruthu.

Enemies: Dr. Strange, Luis Dominquez, Human Torch (Johnny Storm), Ralph McElroy, Spider-Man, Valkyrie (Brunnhilde)

Known Relatives: None

Aliases: The Last True Prophet of the Lord

Base of Operations: An apartment in Manhattan, New York; also worked out of an abandoned, desanctified church in Harlem, New York

First Appearance: Marvel Team-Up I#33 (May, 1975)

 

Powers/Abilities: Jeremiah is a "mutant protopath"--one who feeds on the life energies of sentient beings. He could mesmerize others and utilize their life forces to power his attacks. He banished people to other dimensions, fired destructive energy blasts, and withstood the flame powers of the Human Torch without injury.

Jeremiah posed as--and probably believed himself to be--a devout worshipper of the Judeo-Christian God. In reality he was dealing with a demon named Oruthu, who promised him power in exchange for sending "sinners" to his realm. Whether Jeremiah was aware of the true nature of his dealings is unclear.

History:
(Marvel Team-Up I#33(fb) - BTS) - The Innocents of God took over the former apartment of Norton G. Fester (The Looter) as their religious headquarters

(Marvel Team-Up I#33) - Jeremiah proclaimed Spider-Man as a true symbol of modern day evil, and chose him as a suitable candidate for their rite of purification.

(Marvel Team-Up I#34) - Jeremiah conducted a ceremony, which drew two policemen two investigate the activity at the abandoned church. Infuriated by the interruption, Jeremiah blasted the two men out of existence and then returned to the ceremony.
Later that same day, Jeremiah observed the Valkyrie working with Spider-Man, and decided that this "pagan god" who make an even better candidate for their rite.

 

 

(Marvel Team-Up I#35(fb)-BTS) - Jeremiah abducted the Valkyrie for his ritual.

(Marvel Team-Up I#35) - Sensing the disappearance of the Valkyrie (and Spider-Man), Dr. Strange convinced the Human Torch to join him in looking for them. The Torch followed a lead to the former apartment of Norton Fester (whom Spidey and Val had most recently fought), where he was ambushed and captured by Jeremiah. As the  Innocents of God prepared to sacrifice the Valkyrie to God, the Torch broke free and tried to stop them, but Jeremiah easily blasted him into submission, and then had him doused in holy water.
Dr. Strange sensed the energies being summoned by Jeremiah and traced it back to rescue Val from the demons who were assaulting her. The Torch managed to evaporate the water on his surface and again confronted Jeremiah, distracting him sufficiently to break his hold on the Innocents. Again, Jeremiah managed to defeat the Torch, but before he could complete the sacrifice, Dr. Strange arrived. Strange denounced him as a false prophet, revealed his mutant powers, and also revealed the "gods" he worshipped. Strange then banished Jeremiah to the extra-dimensional realm of his "gods," who were just as happy to make him their next victim.

Comments: Created by Gerry Conway and Sal Buscema.

The reason for Spider-Man's absence in Marvel Team-Up I#35 is not described in these issues, and he has no actual contact with Jeremiah, who passed him over in favor of the Valkyrie. The Official Marvel Index to Marvel-Team-Up lists the reason for his absence as his traveling to Florida (in Giant-Size Spider-Man#5). Way to miss the boat, DOCTOR Strange!

Speaking of Externals: I've always thought that Black Queen Selene might have started out as a mutant protopath. Similar to the late, unlamented Jeremiah (of MTU fame). In fact, some of her mystical knowledge and power might have come from being an Oruthu-worshipper, herself, at some point in the past Thus, if he had hadn't been defeated by Dr. Strange and the Valkyrie, Jeremiah might very well have lived to see the 30th Century A.D. And, perhaps, be as powerful as Selene. Or, at least, near enough that he might be able to take on the Guardians of the Galaxy, all by his lonesome! *Talk about "What If...?" story potential.*

Furthermore, if Oruthu was able to trick Jeremiah into thinking he was doing the Lord's work, couldn't that also have been the case with Arthur "the Crusader" Blackwood?
--Carycomic

Jeremiah has a one page profile (not very informative) as one of "Spider-Man's Forgotten Foes!" in Web of Spider-Man Annual#3.
--Markus Raymond

CLARIFICATIONS:
no known connection to:

The Innocents of God have no connection to:


The Innocents of God

 

This was a group of people who presumably sought legitimate religion, but were apparently mesmerized into following Jeremiah's will. They regained their senses when Jeremiah was defeated.

also referred to as the Death Cult, the Death Crusade, and the Innocents of Hell in the titles and next issue blurbs.

 

--Marvel Team-Up I#33 ([33(fb), 33-35

 

 

 

 


Oruthu

 

Presumably the leader of an unnamed race of demons in another dimension. He may have duped Jeremiah into believing he actually was God, promising power in return for sacrificing "evil" beings to him.

Oruthu and his demons fed on those people Jeremiah sent to their dimension. When Jeremiah was sent there by Dr. Strange, they presumably fed on him as well.

It is unclear whether Oruthu was one of the demons seen, or whether these were just his underlings.

The Official Marvel Index to Marvel-Team-Up states that Oruthu was probably destroyed in this issue. Strange uses a spell of destruction that drops a large rock on the group that was attacking the soul of the Valkyrie, but another batch of demons is seen attacking Jeremiah at the end. I don't see any reason to suspect that Oruthu bit the dust--not that death stops mortals (May Parker, Dr. Octopus, Norman Osborn), let alone magical beings such as demons.

--Marvel Team-Up I#33-BTS, 35

 

 

 


images: (without ads)
Marvel Team-Up I#35, p6, pan6 (main image)

p6, pan4 (head shot)
I#34, p7 (Innocents of God)
I#35, p10, pan4 (Oruthu)


Appearances:
Marvel Team-Up I#33-35 (May-July, 1975) - Gerry Conway (writer), Sal Buscema (pencils), Vince Colletta (inks), Len Wein (editor)
Web of Spider-Man Annual#3 (1987) - Roger Stern (writer), Don Perlin (pencils), Jack Abel (inks), Jim Salicrup (editor)


Last updated: 02/08/03

Any Additions/Corrections? please let me know.

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