Real Name: Unrevealed
Identity/Class: Human mutant or mutate or genetically-engineered being or human variant or android or something else (pre-modern era)
Group Membership: First Line (Dr. Mime, Effigy/Velmax, Eternal Brain/William Carmody, Firefall, Mr. Justice/Tim Carney, Morph, Oxbow, Pixie, Walkabout, Yeti; see comments)
Affiliations: Mary Carmody, Jim Fitzpatrick, Cassandra Locke, Nick Fury, see comments
Enemies: Kang the Conqueror (Nathaniel
Richards), Warlord Kro and his Deviant troops, Nocturne,
Skrull invasion forces (Zankor
and unrevealed others);
presumably Yeti (see comments)
Known Relatives: None
Base of Operations: Unrevealed;
formerly Carmody Institute, New England, Maine
First Appearance: Marvel: The Lost Generation I#11 (March 2000)
Powers/Abilities: Through unrevealed means, the woman calling herself Rapunzel could actively control the growth cycles and movement of her body's hair follicles. This allowed her to rapidly grow out (parts of (see comments)) her supernaturally thick and dense hair, which she used in a variety of offensive and defensive ways. She was seen using it as a whip or to trip people up. Her body seemed geared towards this, granting increased strength, endurance and stamina to the muscles in her head and neck--this provided Rapunzel's frame sufficient durability to comfortably accommodate the impact of the weight added to it whenever she rapidly grew out more hair. Rapunzel's hair was far more durable than that of a baseline human being, though its exact limits were never revealed. It had a captivating--borderline mesmerizing--shine to it, which she repeatedly used to distract and calm down her volatile teammate Yeti. Rapunzel's wristbands each housed a retractable blade that she used to cut off strands of hair as needed. Once cut, the hair lost most of its shine and, presumably, enhanced properties. Not afraid to either risk her life or speak her mind, Rapunzel was strong willed, sassy and referred to other African-American women as "sister".Height: 5'5" (by approximation)
(Marvel: The Lost Generation I#10 (fb) - BTS) - Rapunzel joined the First Line, a team that at the time was little more than a loose knit band of undercover operatives gathering at the Carmody Institute located off the coast of Maine. She signed up at around the same time as Morph, Walkabout and Yeti. Together, they joined First Line mainstays Effigy, Nightingale, Oxbow and Pixie in opposing various enemies like Nocturne and Kang the Conqueror. It soon became apparent that Rapunzel's shiny hair could calm down the easily outraged savage Yeti.
(Marvel: The Lost Generation I#10 - BTS) - Unbeknownst to Rapunzel and the others, CIA operative Nicholas Fury was trying to infiltrate the Carmody Institute in an attempt to get a handle on the new First Line. At the same time, Deviant Warlord Kro decided it was high time to investigate and deal with the rumors an Eternal (most likely Pixie, possibly Makkari) was trying to encourage humanity's interest in "super-heroics"--he assembled a small army and headed for the Carmody institute via the Deviants' subterranean tunnel network. even as 22nd century historian Cassandra Locke from Earth-700 time-warped towards the First Line's base.
(Marvel: The Lost Generation I#10) - At the
same time Walkabout detected and apprehended Nick Fury when he tried
to enter the Carmody Institute, Warlord Kro ordered his Deviant forces
to attack after his gouger located Pixie. When the Deviant troops
burst through the ground, klaxons went off, alerting new recruits
Rapunzel and Morph to the crisis. They came a-running, with an
obviously startled Rapunzel growing out her hair while Morph shifted
into a battering ram-type form, determined to knock back the
intruders. In the midst of this confrontation, time-traveling
historian Cassandra Locke popped up and immediately decided to stay
out of the way. She soon realized from observing the action that
Rapunzel's presence proved she had time-jumped several years before
what would become known as "the Rapunzel tragedy" (see
comments). While Morph, Rapunzel and Walkabout routed the
remaining Deviants (forcing the
unseen Kro to retreat), Effigy started grilling Pixie about
her obvious connection to these mysterious assailants. Before he could
force her to answer, the battle-crazed Yeti went totally berserk,
forcing Rapunzel to once again calm him down by using her hair;
attracting the incensed Inhuman's attention, she waved her long locks
in front of him until he became completely mesmerized. Just then,
Cassandra Locke revealed herself to tell the team about the Skrulls
and their involvement in future events. This news was too much for
Effigy (secretly the Skrull Velmax)
who had to be restrained by his teammates or else he'd have literally
shaken Locke for more information. As Effigy dodged questions as to
just why this news upset him so much, Rapunzel noted how he had just
given Pixie a hard time about not sharing her secrets. The point was
moot, for moments after that, Cassandra Locke deemed it time to resume
her journey into the past. After her departure, Rapunzel and everyone
else who met Locke instantly forgot about her due to a counter-effect
set in motion in the 22nd century (designed
to limit the risk of temporal divergences caused by visiting the
(Marvel: The Lost Generation I#11 -BTS) - Rapunzel joined the newest First Liner Dr. Mime on an unrevealed mission, while the other members of the team stopped Nocturne's plans for destroying New York with a multitech amalgam virus. Upon completing said mission, they returned to the Carmody Institute to find Effigy and the others questioning the recently apprehended Skrull spy Zankor.
(Marvel: The Lost Generation I#11) - Rapunzel teased Effigy, calling Zankor a Martian and even suggested the shape-shifting alien might actually be his distant cousin. Not amused, Effigy pointed out to her there were no Martians and continued the interrogation, assuring Zankor the First Line would call on every super-powered ally available to oppose the aliens' plans.
(Marvel: The Lost Generation I#10 (fb) - BTS) - Rapunzel was possibly slain, crippled, maimed and/or assaulted in some fashion (see comments). These events were logged by an unrevealed source (possibly the time-warped Yankee Clipper). Those writings were eventually unearthed in a "time capsule" discovered by 22nd century historians of Reality-700's Tranquility City on Earth's moon--one of them, Cassandra Locke examined the files and learned about what had become known as the "Rapunzel tragedy."
(X-Men: The Hidden Years I#16 (fb)) - Several years after their deaths, the First Line (Rapunzel among them) was remembered by Pixie following an encounter with the X-Men--the Eternal revealed the fate of the First Line to the team when the young mutant adventurers after they had a run-in with wayward First Liner Yeti.
Comments: Created by Roger Stern (writer), John Byrne (pencils), Al Milgrom (inks).
Leave it to Roger Stern and John Byrne
to turn a character like Rapunzel--a leftover '70s blaxsploitation
bargain-basement Medusa if ever there was one--into someone you actually
want to read more about. She is most likely named after the well known
fairy tale character created by the Brothers Grimm (no,
I noticed that
Rapunzel's ponytail holder at the back of her head didn't change its
relative position, so it would appear as though that extra length of
hair didn't grow out of her scalp, but rather somehow formed at the
end of her existing ponytail (Unless it was just an art oversight by
Byrne). Also, she required rest and nourishment after exercising her
power--following the battle with Kro's Deviant troops, she told her
teammates, "After all that hair I've shed...I need more protein...and
a nap!"--Ron Fredricks
As Rapunzel was only in #10-11, we have only listed her confirmed First Line under First Line membership. She may well have been a member alongside other members, extending into some characters last seen in #9 or seen again in #12...she could have worked with the First Line on other cases for a few years before joining, and/or other former First Line members could have worked with her or the rest of the team on one or more occasions during her period of activity.
The Rapunzel Tragedy:
And as for the Hidden Years flashback: all Medusa says that there was "a tragedy" involving Rapunzel that (eventually) caused him to leave the team in disgrace. It stands to reason that Yeti's shall we say... anti-social... behavior was already causing him trouble during his early days with the First Line. He was barely able to restrain himself in #10, and when we saw him next in #11 (when Korya sought him out), he was already deeply ashamed of something (calling himself a monster) and wanting to be left alone. So he might have gone off the deep end somewhat while with the First Line, forcing him to leave the team in disgrace... only for Korya to work him over, building his shattered self-confidence up with talk of friendship, love and affection, until he was ready to turn against the First Line, with the over-confident Rapunzel first in line to get it, convinced as she was that her hair could calm him down. Again, pure speculation.
I've asked Roger Stern about any possible details on the why, where and how of the Rapunzel tragedy, but he politely declined to answer, leaving said details to future writers.
Thanks to Ron Fredricks for a couple of corrections.
Profile by Norvo.
Rapunzel should not be confused with
images: (without ads)
Marvel The Lost Generation I#10, p8, pan2 (main image)
Marvel The Lost Generation I#10, p10, pan1 (cuts her own hair)
Marvel The Lost Generation I#10, p17, pan2 (calms down Yeti)
X-Men: The Hidden Years I#16, p18, pan3 (flashback)
Marvel: The Lost Generation I#10 (May 2000) - Roger Stern (writer), John Byrne (pencils), Al Milgrom (inks), Ralph Macchio (editor)
Marvel: The Lost Generation I#11 (April 2000) - Roger Stern (writer), John Byrne (pencils), Al Milgrom (inks), Ralph Macchio (editor)
X-Men: The Hidden Years I#16 (March 2001) - John Byrne (writer, pencils), Tom Palmer (inks), Jason Leibig (editor)
First Posted: 02/23/2014
Last updated: 10/23/2019
Any Additions/Corrections? please let me know.
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