Classification: Object of Sacrifice; Magical creation
Creator: Ancient Celts and/or the Druids, Morgan le Fay and Mordred the Evil
User/Possessors: Ancient Celts and Druids, Morgan le Fay and Mordered the Evil
First Appearance: The Gallic War-by Julius Caesar; (in the Marvel Universe) Black Knight I#4 (September, 1990)
Powers/Abilities/Functions: The original
Wicker Man (Men) served merely as a prison/container, which could
then be set on fire to immolate those trapped within it.
The creation of Morgan le Fay was composed of magical energy and was a mobile creature of destruction. It drew demonic life by sapping the life force of those trapped within it. In addition to possessing vastly superhuman strength, it could tap into other sources of magic and project destructive beams of energy from its eyes. It also served as a prison, and attacks against the Wicker Man could injure, or even kill, those within it.
History: see the comments and associated links for a detailed real world history
On Earth-616, the Wicker Man was a giant humanoid figure contstructed out of wicker, in which people and/or animals were placed, and then set on fire. This may have been done as punishment for the foulest criminals, as was done by the ancient Celts, or as sacrifices to bloodthirsty gods, as was done by the Druid sects.
(Chaos War: Dead Avengers#3 (fb) ) - A Wicker Man was burning in the background when Anthony Ludgate came to the sacred oak circle as an initiate to become Doctor Druid.
(Black Knight I#4) - In London, Morgan and
Mordred cast a spell sweeping up a mob of people who had gathered
below. The people were contained within a Wicker Man of magical
energy, which Morgan then set against her enemies: the Black
Knight (Dane Whitman's body inhabited by Sir Percy), Dr. Strange,
and the Valkyrie (possessing Victoria Bentley). Strange uleashed a spell at the Wicker Man, but
recalled it--at much pain to himself--when he realized it would
harm those inside. The Black Knight attacked it, but it grasped
his sword, drew on its power fired an energy blast that
incapacitated all three of its opponents. Strange and the
Valkyrie were imprisoned within the Wicker Man while Sir Percy
was forced to swear allegiance to Morgan and Mordred at the
threat of the deaths of all within the Wicker Man.
Percy was bound by honor to carry out his oath, but Dane Whitman was bound by no such oath. Realizing this, Sir Percy removed his helmet, restoring Dane Whitman's mind and control. Swiftly, Dane thrust the Ebony Blade into the Wicker Man's head. Whitman wasnearly overcome by the magical energies released, but the spirit of Sir Percy merged with the Ebony Blade, allowing him to tolerate them. The Wicker Man then dissipated, freeing all those trapped within. The Black Knight then used the energies absorbed by his sword to drive off Morgan and Mordred, forcing them back into the Astral Realm from which they had escaped.
(Druid#1) - Anthony Ludgate has a vision back his ancestral line to the days when Lud's gate was lit by the glare of men and cattle burning in great wicker men.
Comments: Created by the ancient Celts and/or Druids. Adapted to the MU by Roy and Dann Thomas and Rich Buckler.
Background info on the Wicker Man, courtesy of the Myth-Masters of the Obscure:
Nick the Squid:
John McDonagh: http://www.straightdope.com/classics/a981113.html has a discussion of the Wicker Man legend.
Will U: Wicker crafting was traced to the ancient Scandinavians. The Cimbri tribes of Europe used huge wicker images of men to contain and burn alive criminals and other evil-doers in addition to impalement. The Gauls and Celts later used the practice to sacrifice their enemies to their gods. The also used small straw man effigies to burn in homage to the great thunder god Taranis brought to them by the invading Greeks. Alledgedly, the Celts had an habit of honoring the gods of their invaders rather than offending them.
Druid#1, p3, right side (Wicker Man main image)
Black Knight I#4, p10, pan1 (Black Knight VS Wicker Man)
Black Knight II#4 (September, 1990) - Roy & Dann Thomas (writer), Rich Buckler (penciler), Tony Dezuniga (inkers), Mark Gruenwald (editor)
Druid#1 (May, 1995) - Warren Ellis (writer), Leonardo Manco (artist), Marie Javins (editor)
Chaos War: Dead Avengers#3 (March, 2011) - Fred Van Lente (writer), Tom Grummett (pencils), Cory Hamscher & Terry Pallot (inks), Mark Paniccia (editor)
Any Additions/Corrections? please let me know.
First Posted: 10/27/2002
Last Updated: 06/21/2016
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