Real Name: presumably Veeda Leebre (see comments below)
Identity/Class: Extra-terrestrial, race unknown
Occupation: 'God' of the Carmodian race
Group Membership: none known
Affiliations: The people of Carmondy IV
Enemies: Captain Marvel (Genis-Vell), Godstalker
Known Relatives: none
Aliases: none known
Base of Operations: (former) Carmondy IV (current) unknown
First Appearance: (as statue) Captain Marvel IV#4 (March 1996), (in the flesh) Captain Marvel IV #5 (April 1996)
Powers/Abilities: Veeda Leebre has been shown to have the ability to traverse space unaided and to create space warps into hyper-space. He has also been shown to have matter manipulation powers on a planetary scale at least, and has the ability to 'resurrect' a large number of dead people (over 2 billion, and who had been dead for almost three weeks when resurrected) in an instant and return them back to their regular lives minus the memories of how they died. He can also radically change his appearance from a humanoid form to a more alien-looking form. In fact, the two forms shown on this page may not be his true form at all. While the exact limits of Veeda Leebre's powers are unknown; he was apparently able to hold his own against the Godstalker when he came for him. The nature of his abilities are unknown (see comments below).
History: The origins of Veeda Leebre are unrevealed. The only thing known for sure about him was that he was at least many many thousands of years old and had presided over Carmondy IV for a few thousand of their local years. (See comments below for some theories on his origin.)
(CM IV#4): The Godstalker came to Carmondy IV for Veeda Leebre.
(CM IV#5, BTS): Veeda Leebre and the Godstalker fought. Leebre lost and was taken prisoner. The Carmondians then committed mass suicide.
(CM IV#5): (Two weeks later) The lone survivor of the suicide, a woman named Jara, went to the planet Calculex to convince Captain Marvel to find the Godstalker and avenge the deaths of the Carmondians. Genis found the Godstalker at his base, the Desecration Annex, and battled him there. Genis convinced the Godstalker to free Veeda Leebre by threatening to release several of his prisoners at once. Once released Leebre returned to Carmondy IV and saw firsthand the deaths his forced absence had wrought.
(CM IV#6, (fb)) Right before Captain Marvel left Carmondy IV
he witnessed a planet-wide flash of light that instantly restored the dead
Carmondians back to life and back to the lives they had previously lived
before their 'spiritual cleansing', minus any memories of the Godstalker's
attack and their subsequent mass suicide. They were also given more 'perfect'
idealized bodies. Genis immediately realized what Veeda Leebre had
done to the people and tried to undo it by convincing the Carmondians they
were really still dead. After several days of trying, including
unsuccessful attempts at convincing Jara (whose memories had also been altered),
a priest, and a group of young children, Genis went and confronted Leebre
himself about what he has done. Leebre admitted that the reason he
restored the Carmondians was because of his vanity and his guilt over causing
their deaths. Genis then revealed that Jara had listened in on their
conversation and brought her out of hiding in the Negative Zone to confront
Leebre herself. Jara forgave Leebre for the suicides, saying it was
the Carmondians' own fault for preferring to believe in Leebre far more than
they believed in themselves. With Jara's belief in him gone Leebre
allowed the resurrected Carmondians to die and rest in peace again.
And watched without interfering as Jara chose to follow her people into death
by killing herself with a knife to the heart.
Comments: Created by Fabian Nicieza. Humanoid look created by Ed Benes and Joe Pimental, 'caterpillar' look by Daerick Gross, Sellers & Albrecht(no first name was given in the credits for these two inkers).
If ever you wondered why some fans do not like fill-in artists in the middle of an arc, CM IV#5-6 will give you an answer. In the Gross fill-in issue (#5) Leebre is drawn as a furry four-armed caterpillar, while the Carmondians are drawn small and lumpish with a very non-human face, while the Benes issues (#4 ) Leebre is drawn more like the standard humanoid alien so prevalent in most comic book universes, while the Carmondians are drawn larger, more human-ish, and a lot prettier to look at. Based on the art in#4 Leebre was always supposed to have the humanoid look (there is a statue of Leebre in the background in that scene). While a line in#6 can be used to cover a shapechanging ability it makes no in-story sense for Leebre to change his appearance that drastically between#5 and#6, unless he regularly changed shape like that without notice during his reign on Carmondy IV. (Jara recognized him even after the change in appearance in#6.) Also, the dialogue in#6 states that the changes Leebre made were supposed to be subtle ones, not the gross (no pun intended) changes that were presented between#5 and#6. (All right, the changes to the Carmondians themselves can be put down to artistic interpretation, but Leebre's changes are not so easily dismissed.)
At one point in#6 Leebre mentions having looked many ways and been many things over the course of his lifetime. Possibly all of this shape shifting included name changes as well.
As stated above, the origins of Leebre's powers are unrevealed. It is unknown whether he is an Eternal of his people (and if so, if he's the Prime Eternal of that race or not), whether he was a mortal who gained/was granted godlike powers from an outside entity (similar to how the Heralds of Galactus were all once mortal people before Galactus gave them the Power Cosmic), born as a 'god' in another dimension and later came to live in this one (aka Thor and the Asgardians), or whether he gained power from an object of power or ten (aka Infinity Gem-type objects, power bands, magic jewels, Waters of Life, etc.) This last suggestion seems the unlikeliest of all, since Leebre does not seem to have any such object(s) on him However, it/they could be hidden in a pocket someplace so as to prevent anyone from trying to sneak up on him and take it/them.
One thing that this story could have used is an extra issue or three as a subplot to show what life was like for the Carmondians before and after Leebre came to them and how he interacted with them over the millennia before he was taken from them. (For example, were the Carmondians about to wipe themselves off their planet in a nuclear holocaust or was the situation more like what is on present-day Earth? And just how did Leebre solve this world's problems anyway? And since the Carmondians had access to space travel [Jara sure didn't walk the distance from Carmondy to Calculex and back in two week's time!] did Leebre allow dissenters and/or the curious to leave the planet whenever they wanted or did he 'force' everyone to stay put on the ground?) It would have been nice for the readers to actually see for themselves if Leebre really was abusing his place as 'god' to a less advanced people rather than just taking the Godstalker's word for it that he was. Also, it would have been interesting to see if there was any debate among the Carmondians as to whether it would be better to somehow try to free Leebre from the Godstalker first rather than just lie down and die like they seemed to do. After all, the Carmondians were said to have chosen of their own free will to worship Leebre; there is no suggestion at all that Leebre brainwashed or otherwise forced any of the Carmondians to worship him. Surely some of his followers would have have been gung-ho for a rescue attempt, even if none of them had the power to even get the Godstalker's attention. The debates for and against either course of action would have made an interesting addition to the story and would have helped the Carmondians avoid the 'true believers are unthinking lemmings when it comes to drastic actions' clichés they fell into during this arc.
At the very least, the ultimate fate of the
Carmondians was not something Leebre ever intended. His intentions
were never malicious, and it apparently never occurred to him that people
can believe in something or someone to the point of committing mass suicide
when it is gone until far too late. Whether he has since left Carmondy
IV as a deserted planet or has found some other way of repopulating it (i.e.
finding any surviving Carmondians that were out among the stars when the
disaster hit and bringing them home to restart their race, or using cloning
technology to re-create the dead Carmondians, or some combination of the
two) has yet to be revealed. Hopefully he's learned something
about the natures of belief, religion, and free will, and will watch for
the downsides of those things the next time someone wishes to start a religion
around him. Or at the very least, make sure no-one puts a 'we will
die without you here!' clause in their holy books. :)
This character, Veeda Leebre, has no known connections to
Captain Marvel IV#5 p 32, pan 3 (detail) (page count
p 32, pan 1 (detail)
Captain Marvel IV#6 p 23, pan 1
p 23, pan 5 (detail)
Last updated: 06/24/04
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Captain Marvel IV#4-6 - March through May 1996