BRASS BISHOP

Real Name: Benedicto de vica Severtes

Identity/Class: Human magic-user (centuries past (see comments) through modern era)

Occupation: Unrevealed;
    former bishop in Catholic Church

Group Membership: Formerly the Catholic Church

Affiliations: Formerly Beatriz, Dargil, numerous soulless pawns

Enemies: Alpha Flight (Flex, Guardian/James Hudson synthoid, Manbot, Puck/Eugene Judd, Radius/Jared Corbo, Vindicator/Heather Hudson), Beatriz, Dargil, Mephisto, Modred the Mystic; crew of the Navigator; people of White Cross, Newfoundland

Known Relatives: None

Aliases: None

Base of Operations: Currently unrevealed (presumably Mephisto's realm of Hell);
    formerly White Cross, Newfoundland;
    formerly Basilica Alicante, Spain (centuries past, see comments)

First Appearance: (Referenced) Alpha Flight I#12 (July, 1984);
    (partially seen - arm & voice) Alpha Flight II#14 (September, 1998);
    (fully seen) Alpha Flight II#15 (October, 1998)


   

 

 

Powers/Abilities: The Brass Bishop possesses extensive, though undefined, magical powers. Under uncertain means he decapitated and enslaved the demon Dargil, who consumes the souls of mortals on contact, and these souls serve as a mystic power battery for the Brass Bishop. In addition, the bodies and minds of those whose soul Dargil has consumed are under the Brass Bishop's control. The Bishop's armor provides him with superhuman durability and also renders his soul invisible/undetectable. His staff can generate mystic force fields or project destructive blasts.

    The circumstances under which he creates and/or summons the Tower of Babel are unrevealed, though the Tower does enable him to access the Gate of Heaven.

    Severtes has an unspecified degree of mystic knowledge.

 

 

 

 

 

 

History:
(Alpha Flight II#16 (fb)) - "Centuries ago," in the Basilica Alicante, Spain, Bishop Benedicto de Vica Servertes fell in love with a woman named Beatriz. Knowing his God forbade him to have her, the bishop instead turned to darker power, calling on Mephisto and offering to pay any price to have Beatriz by her side. Mephisto agreed in exchange for taking the bishop's soul upon his death, but then put Beatriz by his side as a a nun studying under him, farther away than ever. Swearing not to lose his soul for naught, the bishop read in the pages of apocryphal texts that a suit of brass could conceal the soul of its wearer; as the suit would only work if every seam were sealed with the blood of an innocent woman, the maddened bishop took the blood of the only innocent woman he knew: Beatriz.
    As the bishop's soul vanished, Mephisto sent an agent, the demon Dargil, to find it, and the now Brass Bishop decapitated Dargil, keeping his head. The Brass Bishop confronted Mephisto in Hell, demanding his soul be freed in exchange for returning Dargil to him. Mephisto refused, agreeing only to trade the Bishop's invisible soul for Beatriz's which now resided in Heaven. The Brass Bishop vowed he would never trade his soul for Beatriz's, but over time he became desperate to save his own soul and plotted to storm the gates of Heaven.

(Alpha Flight II#16 (fb) - BTS) - Years ago (see comments), "in a secret land," the Brass Bishop built a new "Tower of Babel" to Heaven.

(Alpha Flight II#16 (fb)) - The Brass Bishop and his minions fought Modred the Mystic and Puck who fought to hold closed the doors of eternity. Modred instructed Puck to locate the Solomon Seal and prevent the Bishop from getting his hands on it.

(Alpha Flight II#16 (fb) - BTS) - The Brass Bishop intended to use the Solomon Seal to unlock the gates of Heaven.

Alpha Flight II#16 (fb) - BTS) - Modred and Puck defeated the Brass Bishop, foiling his plans, and Modred hid the Solomon Seal within the Tower of Babel, which he then presumably banished from the mortal plane.

(Alpha Flight I#12 - BTS) - Puck referenced a past encounter with the Brass Bishop.

 

 

 

 

 

 

(Alpha Flight II#14) - In the Labrador Sea, south of Greenland's Cape Farewell, the Brass Bishop's ship approached the Navigator, the ship of a group assigned to destroy large icebergs, telling them he would take their ship to complete his journey. The time had come for collection...

Alpha Flight II#16 (fb) - BTS) - The Brass Bishop's demon-pawn Dargil consumed the souls of those humans he encountered, and the Bishop drew power from these souls via Dargil, gradually killing the souls as he did so.

(Alpha Flight II#15 (fb) - BTS) - The Brass Bishop took the Navigator to White Cross, Newfoundland. Soon after, all contact from White Cross to the outside world ceased. A Special Forces Army Corps was sent in, but minutes later all contact with them was lost.

(Alpha Flight II#15 - BTS) - When Canadian agents researched the Navigator's missing crew, they found their ship missing and found one zombie-like crewman who detonated the ship's clearly dynamite, killing all those present.

(Alpha Flight II#16 (fb) - BTS) - The Brass Bishop re-formed the Tower of Babel in White Cross.

(Alpha Flight II#15) - Department H's Mr. Gentry sent Alpha Flight to investigate the situation, with a visual tech having used a satellite to track the Navigator to White Cross, Newfoundland. He further noted that visual enhancement showed no visible crew as it sailed.
    Alpha Flight  (Flex, Guardian/James Hudson synthoid, Manbot, Puck/Eugene Judd, Radius/Jared Corbo, Vindicator/Heather Hudson) soon after arrived in White Cross, where they encountered a number of zombie-like people (including the wife of the Prime Minister) but no living beings. They found one little girl who initially seemed to be alive, but proved to be another zombie-deal when she led their ship on a collision course with the Bishop's Tower of Babel. At the last second Puck sensed the tower, and Guardian swerved enough to strike only a glancing blow and then crash on the ground below. Puck's memory of his past encounter with the Bishop began to return, and the Brass Bishop then appeared before them and introduced himself.

(Alpha Flight II#16) - Greeting Puck, the Brass Bishop then instructed Dargil to consume the souls of the newly arrived unbelievers. Radius leapt forward, believing his force field would protect him, but Dargil began to feast on his soul nonetheless; Puck knocked Radius to safety. The Bishop then directed the soulless inhabitants of White Cross, all under his control, to attack the Alphans while he began to scale his new Tower of Babel. Puck led the Alphans into the tower, and he tried to relocate the Solomon Seal before the Bishop could, but the Bishop then had Dargil feast on Puck's soul, placing Puck under his control. Radius then tackled the Bishop, while Flex saved Vindicator from becoming Dargil's next victim. The Bishop then blasted Radius away and sent Puck to lead him to the Solomon Seal. With the tower proving to be some sort of multi-planar maze, the Bishop escaped the rest of Alpha, but Manbot tracked Puck via his identitag.
    Meanwhile, Puck's soul found its way to a portal out of Dargil. Puck led the Bishop to the Seal, after which Alpha arrived and confronted him anew. Telling them they were too late, the Bishop used the Seal to cause  the gates of Heaven to appear. Puck's soul, however, gathered the collective willpower of the other souls trapped with Dargil, and while Alpha struggled to keep the Bishop from the gate, Puck's soul returned to his body, and he grabbed the Solomon Seal and used it to unlock the Bishop's helmet. With the Bishop's mystic armor breached, Mephisto was able to sense him at last, and Mephisto arrived and collected his soul.
    Also as the armor was breached, Dargil disgorged those surviving souls contained within him, and they returned to their hosts.
    After Mephisto took away the Bishop, the Tower of Babel vanished.

 

 

 

 

Comments: Originally referenced by John Byrne;
    Fleshed out by Steven Seagle, Duncan Rouleau, and Rob Hunter.

    In Alpha Flight II#16, the Brass Bishop referenced his and Puck's previous encounter as "decades ago and continents removed."
    Continents removed certainly is possible, but "decades ago" is a little harder. Puck was certainly active for like 100 years, and Modred first became a sorcerer back in the 6th century; however, Modred was inert for many centuries, only reviving during the modern era, 1975 real time. From 1975 to 1998 real time just can't be "decades," since there haven't been decades from FF#1 to the most recent comics. It couldn't be more than 6 years between the stories, and possibly only 4 years.
    Other possibilities:

Anyone able to pin down the Brass Bishop's original period of activity?

  1. Alicante is the name of a Spanish city and a province. In the province there is a Basilica de Santa Maria in the city of Elche (http://www.alicante-spain.com/elche.html). It was built over a mosque in the 18th century to the designs of Alicante's Saint Nicholas church. Maybe this is the Basilica referenced in Brass Bishop's history which would mean that he was active since the 18th century.
    --Markus Raymond
  2. The best known location under the name Alicante is a city in Valencia, Spain. With 322,431 inhabitants in the 2006 sensus, it is currently the 12th most populated city in Spain. From the 15th to the early 17th century, Alicante "became a major Mediterranean trading station exporting rice, wine, olive oil, oranges and wool. But between 1609 and 1614 Philip III of Spain expelled thousands of moriscos who had remained in Valencia after the reconquista, due to their allegiance with Berber pirates who continually attacked coastal cities and caused much harm to trade. This act cost the region dearly; with so many skilled artisans and agricultural laborers gone, the feudal nobility found itself sliding into bankruptcy." For more see: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Alicante.

    The city is within the Roman Catholic Diocese of Orihuela-Alicante. The diocese was renamed on 9 March, 1959 to take into account the growing population and significance of Alicante. Its previous name was Diocese of Orihuela, after the previous greatest city of the area which was in decline during the 20th century.
    Orihuela was the seat of a Bishop since 14 July, 1564. For a list of Bishops see: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Roman_Catholic_Diocese_of_Orihuela-Alicante.
    Note that the seat seems to have been vacant between 14 July, 1564 and 22 August, 1565. Which would be a good place for a curator Bishop for Orihuela and Alicante.

    Previously Orihuela and Alicante were included in the Roman Catholic Diocese of Cartagena. Which was supposedly founded in the 1st century though its history is poorly recorded prior to 1505. See: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Diocese_of_Cartagena
    In case you decide to place him prior to the 16th century.
    --Dim I Nticoudis

Profile by Snood.

CLARIFICATIONS:
No KNOWN connections to:


images: (without ads)
Alpha Flight II#15, last page - upper body close-up
    #16, p3, panel 1 & 2 (unarmored form, with and without Beatriz; panel 2 = unmasked face)
        p5, full body atop tower of slaves
        p6, panel 1 (main image)
        p17, panel 6 (masked face)


Appearances:
Alpha Flight II#14 (November, 1998) - Steven Seagle (writer), Duncan Rouleau (penciler), Troy Hubbs (inker), Jaye Gardner (editor)
Alpha Flight II#15 (November, 1998) - Steven Seagle (writer), Duncan Rouleau (penciler), Rob Hunter (inker), Jaye Gardner (editor)
Alpha Flight II#16 (November, 1998) - Steven Seagle (writer), Duncan Rouleau (penciler), Rob Hunter, Aaron Sowd, & Cabin Boy (inkers), Jaye Gardner (editor)
 


Last updated: 06/05/08

Any Additions/Corrections? please let me know.

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