CHARLEMAGNE

Real Name: "Charlie" (full name unrevealed)

Identity/Class: Human, conventional weapons user

Occupation: Mercenary, assassin

Group Membership: None

Affiliations: Wolverine (Logan/James Howlett);
    formerly Russian agents, Spider-Man (Peter Parker)

Enemies: Russian agents, Spider-Man, agents of multiple national intelligence/security agencies

Known Relatives: None

Aliases: None

Base of Operations: Currently unrevealed;
    formerly a mansion in eastern Berlin, mobile;

First Appearance: Spider-Man vs. Wolverine#1 (February, 1987)

 

 

 

Powers/Abilities: Charlemagne was highly skilled in stealth, tracking, espionage, and combat. She was experienced with various forms of armed and unarmed combat, including the use of knives, firearms (here preferred gun was a nine millimeter of European design), etc. She carried a gun strapped to her thigh. She was allegedly a better tracker than Wolverine and knew how to stay upwind, etc. so he could not track her unless she wanted him to.

Height: Approximately 5'7"
Weight: Approximately 132 lbs.
Eyes: Green
Hair: Red

 

 

 

 

 

 

History:
(Spider-Man vs. Wolverine#1 (fb) - BTS) - Charlemagne was a well known mercenary, working for whoever paid her. Wolverine considered her his best friend.

(Spider-Man vs. Wolverine#1 (fb) - BTS) - Charlemagne made a lot of money free-lancing as an intelligence agent, and she stored it in various accounts in various countries.

(Spider-Man vs. Wolverine#1 (fb) - BTS) - Charlemagne took a job for Russian agents (see comments). As it was during the Cold War, Wolverine advised against it, telling her she couldn't trust them (nor could she trust the CIA or anyone at this time), but she stubbornly took the job anyway. She learned something that made her dangerous to the Russians, and after she completed the job they targeted her for death.

(Spider-Man vs. Wolverine#1 (fb)) - In eastern Berlin, Wolverine and Charlemagne fought and slew 50 Russian operatives, escaping death at 100 rounds of ammunition, followed by clubs, bottles, and bricks. Then the second string arrived, covert Russian agents who had been in deep cover posing as German townsfolk; the fact that these people were blowing covers that had taken years to build made Wolverine realize how bad they wanted Charlemagne. Badly injured, Charlemagne was no longer able to fight, but Wolverine set her down and then unleashed himself on their attackers. He slew them all, but when he was done, Charlemagne was gone, having escaped and left behind her trademark charm, a private joke between the two of them that said she had won.

(Spider-Man vs. Wolverine#1 (fb) - BTS) - Charlemagne went deep into cover, but swore vengeance on the Russian agents who had betrayed her. Years later, she resurfaced, finding and slaying them wherever they were, leaving behind a heart-shaped charm at the site of each killing. Her actions eventually drew heat from a number of national agencies who considered her a security threat to the entire planet.

(Spider-Man vs. Wolverine#1 (fb) - BTS) - Charlemagne slew a number of covert Russian agents based in Manhattan.

(Spider-Man vs. Wolverine#1 (fb) - BTS) - Charlemagne slew a pair of covert Russian agents who had long been posing as Manhattan store owners Sophie and Burt.

(Spider-Man vs. Wolverine#1) - Spider-Man saw Charlemagne walking down the streets a short distance from Sophie and Burt's shop. He had no idea who she was (he'd never heard of Charlemagne at this point) but was soon distracted from her when a young woman announced that something had happened to Sophie and Burt.

(Spider-Man vs. Wolverine#1 - BTS) - From a rooftop, Charlemagne slew a pair of covert Russian agents in Times Square. She was long gone before Spider-Man, the police, or SWAT could locate her.
    Daily Bugle reporter Ned Leeds discovered that a number of covert Russian agents had been recently murdered. He correctly suspected Charlemagne to have been behind these killings and got Jonah Jameson's permission to travel to Berlin to investigate, taking along Peter Parker as his photographer.
    All of the killings also drew the attention of Wolverine, who also headed to Berlin. Charlemagne slew a pair of Russian agents tailing Wolverine, allowing him to catch her scent. Soon after, Wolverine recognized Parker's scent as Spider-Man and he led Parker out of his hotel room (presumably in case the place were bugged) to warn him and Leeds to to go home because they were in way over his head. When Parker returned to his room, he found Ned dead, and Parker had to wonder if Wolverine had led him away so Ned could be killed.

(Spider-Man vs. Wolverine#1) - Wolverine tracked Charlemagne's scent to a steel mill (a former Russian agent front) outside Berlin where he found Charlemagne and a number of dead Russian agents. The two kissed, and then she took him to her house in the hills outside the city where she told him that every intelligence agency in the world was after her, after which they shared a romance. Refusing to stay in hiding and knowing her enemies would find her no matter where they went, Charlemagne took Logan out to dinner at the Ganymed on Friedrich Strasse. Their food was poisoned it, and Wolverine realized this just seconds after Charlemagne did. She further told him that while everyone in the room was heavily armed and gunning for them and would attack soon enough, they should enjoy things while they could. Spider-Man then burst in, intending to save them but instead precipitating the assault. Charlemagne drew her gun and they fought their attackers for some time, but Charlemagne slipped out unseen in mid-battle.

(Spider-Man vs. Wolverine#1 - BTS) - Charlemagne stayed two steps ahead of Wolverine, continuing to slaughter Russian agents, with him arriving only to find their corpses. Wolverine accused Spider-Man of ruining his plan to keep Charlemagne in check, hide her away, and keep the lid on things.

(Spider-Man vs. Wolverine#1) - She later called Wolverine and met at the Soviet cemetery at Treptow. He warned her that her enemies would track the call there and kill her slowly and painfully, but she realized this and embraced him, telling him to end it for her quickly. He popped his claws into her, but flinched at the last second and failed to kill her. He steeled himself to finish her, but then Spider-Man arrived and tried to stop him from killing. Spider-Man and Wolverine battled, with things progressively escalating as Spider-Man realized he might have to kill Wolverine to stop him. When a helicopter from above shone a light on them, Wolverine ducked away, and then Charlemagne snuck up behind Spider-Man allowing him to hear and sense her approach. Figuring it was Wolverine, he turned and delivered a blow with the rest of his strength. As she had planned, the injury swiftly proved fatal, and she said her goodbyes to Wolverine, promising to see him in the next life. A joint effort of international agents then approached, but when Wolverine told them Charlemagne was dead, they all disappeared rapidly.
    Spider-Man was haunted by having killed Charlemagne for some time.

 

Comments: Created by James C. Owsley (now Priest), Mark Bright, & Al Williamson.

    The death of Ned Leeds had little to nothing to do with Charlemagne. It was a kill order put out by the Foreigner for Leeds involvement as being the Hobgoblin (actually the pawn of the true Hobgoblin (Roderick Kingsley)).

    Per Wikipedia:

The Berlin Wall (German: Berliner Mauer) was a physical barrier separating West Berlin from the German Democratic Republic (GDR) (East Germany), including East Berlin. The longer 'inner German border' demarcated the border between East and West Germany. Both borders came to symbolize the Iron Curtain between Western and Eastern Europe.
    The wall separated the two German states for 28 years and 1 day, from the day construction began on August 13, 1961 until it was dismantled beginning in late 1989, and was considered to be a longtime symbol of the Iron Curtain.[1] During this period, at least 136 people were confirmed killed trying to cross the Wall into West Berlin, according to official figures. However, a prominent victims' group claims that more than 200 people were killed trying to flee from East to West Berlin.[2] The East German government issued shooting orders to border guards dealing with defectors; such orders are not the same as shoot to kill orders which GDR officials denied ever issuing.

    When the East German government announced on November 9, 1989, after several weeks of civil unrest, that all GDR citizens could visit West Germany and West Berlin, crowds of East Germans climbed onto and crossed the wall, joined by West Germans on the other side in a celebratory atmosphere. Over the next few weeks, parts of the wall were chipped away by a euphoric public and by souvenir hunters; industrial equipment was later used to remove almost all of the rest of it.
    The fall of the Berlin Wall paved the way for German reunification, which was formally concluded on October 3, 1990.

KGB (transliteration of "КГБ") is the Russian abbreviation of Committee for State Security (Russian: Комитет государственной безопасности; Komityet Gosudarstvennoy Bezopasnosty), which was the official name of the umbrella organization serving as the Soviet Union's premier security agency, secret police, and intelligence agency, from 1954 to 1991.
    The name of the largest of the Russian successors to the KGB is the FSB (ФСБ, Федеральная служба безопасности; Federalnaya Slujba Bezopasnosty; English: Federal Security Service).

 

The flashback with Wolverine and Charlemagne took place "a long time ago" in relation to a story that was written in 1987, before the collapse of the Berlin Wall. It was probably intended to have occurred in the 1970s, but since Wolverine has his metal claws, it can't be too long before the modern era.
 
Since Wolverine didn't have metallic claws 20 and counting years ago (right?), I'm going to refer to eastern Berlin, rather than East Berlin, and consider the reference to the Berlin Wall in the flashback to be topical. And I'll switch USSR to Russia, etc. KGB should probably be switched to FSB.
    Or do we just assume the metal claws to be artistic license/error? The Cold War aspect of the plot was fairly important.
    Wolverine was in his Weapon X yellow w/ blue stripes costume.

    It wasn't clear until halfway through the story that Charlemagne was a woman.

    20 years after this story, Marvel produced a What If issue as a pseudo-sequel:

Earth-8351 Spdm & Wolverine stayed in Europe to protect Charlemagne’s sister Alex, joined Nebo in terminating terrorist groups as life’s mission.
    --W? Spdm vs Wolverine#1

Profile by Snood.

CLARIFICATIONS:
Charlemagne's codename was inspired by:


images: (without ads)
Spider-Man vs. Wolverine#1, p1 (flashback appearance)
        p40, panel 1 (face)
        p44, panel 2 (full body) & 3 (face with gun)


Appearances:
Spider-Man vs. Wolverine#1 (February, 1987) - James C. Owsley (now Priest; writer), Mark Bright (penciler), Al Williamson (inker), Ann Nocenti (editor)


Last updated: 09/28/08

Any Additions/Corrections? please let me know.

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