WOLVERINE

Real Name: Unrevealed

Identity/Class: Extradimensional (Earth-74135) human mutant, Canadian citizen

Occupation: Government operative

Group Membership: X-Men (Angel/Warren Worthington, Banshee/Sean Cassidy, Colossus/Peter Rasputin, Cyclops/Scott Summers, Havok/Alex Summers, Iceman/Bobby Drake, Marvel Girl/Jean Grey, Nightcrawler/Kurt Wagner, Polaris/Lorna Dane, Professor X/Charles Xavier, Sunfire/Shiro Yoshida, Storm/Ororo, Thunderbird/John Proudstar);
    formerly a secret department of the Canadian Military

Affiliations: None

Enemies: Hulk (Bruce Banner), Wendigo (Paul Cartier)

Known Relatives: None

Aliases: Badger, Weapon X

Base of Operations: Xavier's School for Gifted Youngsters, Salem Center, New York;
    formerly a secluded military installation, Quebec, Canada

First Appearance: X-Men Companion#1 (March 1982)

Powers/Abilities: Wolverine is a mutant possessing animalistic heightened senses (sight, smell and night vision) and tenacity. He wears gloves which are equipped with retractable Adamantium claws; the gloves themselves are made of fabric-covered Adamantium.

Height: 5'5" (per production sketches)
Weight: Unrevealed
Eyes: Unrevealed
Hair: Unrevealed

History:
(X-Men Companion#1) - Wolverine was a 19 year-old mutant, a natural hunter and tracker and a savage fighter; he was incredibly resilient (effectively a savage variant of the original Beast). He worked for the Canadian government, because despite his snapping, nasty, aggressive attitude, and being far from a nice guy, he had a heroic bent
. Possessed of animalistic instincts, he lived to fight, and his natural inclination was to disembowel his opponents or slit their throats--these urges he resisted, feeling that to give in to this desire would be to surrender to his inner beast, to truly be an animal and not a human being.

(Incredible Hulk II#181 (fb) - BTS) -The Canadian government spent a great deal of time, money and effort developing Wolverine's natural born strength, speed and savagery into the skills of a professional warrior, though some kinks remained in his psychological make-up.

(Incredible Hulk II#180) - When a Royal Canadian Air Force (RCAF) Tracking Instillation detected the Hulk entering Canada, the commanding officer mobilized Weapon X (aka Wolverine) to deal with the threat. 

(Incredible Hulk II#181 (fb) - BTS) - Wolverine requested six hours to bring down the Hulk single-handedly.

(Incredible Hulk II#180) - The diminutive mutant soon caught up with the Hulk in the forests of Quebec, finding him battling the Wendigo, but this didn't deter him from challenging his target to fight.

(Incredible Hulk II#181) - Wolverine lunged into the fray, attacking both monsters with equal ferocity, before concentrating on Wendigo since Hulk was proving less vulnerable to his claws. Mistakenly thinking this meant the newcomer was his ally, Hulk began assisting Wolverine, and the canuck took advantage of this, letting him weaken Wendigo enough for Wolverine to finish the job, permitting himself to deliver what should have been a lethal blow because the Wendigo was a murderous monster, although the Wendigo survived thanks to its mystical immortality. After only a momentary pause, Wolverine savagely turned on Hulk again, but became frustrated that no matter how many times he slashed the green goliath, it failed to bring him down; the Hulk was similarly frustrated by Wolverine constantly dodging his every attack. Their conflict was finally brought to an end by Marie Cartier, sister to the cursed Paul Cartier, whose soul was trapped within the Wendigo form--Marie rendered both fighters unconscious with an almost invisible gas. Not requiring Wolverine for her plans to transfer the curse from her brother, Marie chained up the unconscious mutant moments before both he and the Hulk unexpectedly revived. As Wolverine struggled to break his chains, Hulk lifted him aloft and smashed him against some boulders, but this only served to shatter Wolverine's restraints, and he immediately leapt back into battle. With the pair distracted, Marie fled unobserved to the cave where she had taken the unconscious Wendigo, but was confronted by the creature (with the curse now transferred to Paul's friend Georges Baptiste); her resulting scream distracted Wolverine for a split second longer than it distracted the Hulk, finally allowing the jade giant to land a blow. Though Wolverine sensed what was coming and moved his head away with inhuman speed, he still suffered a glancing blow--that, plus his astonishing stamina, saved his life from what should have been a fatal strike, but he was still rendered unconscious.

(Incredible Hulk II#182) - Wolverine recovered within minutes and was about to tackle the Hulk again when an RCAF helicopter arrived and ordered him to stand down, informing him his six hours were up. Wolverine protested that his failure was only a temporary setback, and that he could still take down his target, but reluctantly obeyed when ordered to enter a lift-capsule dropped by the helicopter to extract him from the field, leaving it to commandos to take over the fight.

(Giant-Size X-Men#1) - Ordered to the base's conference room, Wolverine was introduced to a visitor, Professor Charles Xavier, who made him an offer to become a free-agent working for him. Liking the chance to get out from under the red tape and rigmarole, Wolverine swiftly accepted, much to the shock and anger of his superior present. When the officer angrily reminded Wolverine of the government's investment in him, threatening to lock him up if he tried to walk out, Wolverine responded by extending one of the claws on his left hand glove, then, reminding him that it was a free country and announcing that he was resigning his commission effective immediately--Wolverine sliced through his superior's tie, barely missing the man himself. With his former commander backed against a wall, Wolverine held the claw under the man's nose and demanded to know if he had any further objections. As Wolverine and the Professor exited the room, the officer ominously told his former employee that he hadn't heard the last of this, but a defiant Wolverine told him that any time he was wanted, they knew where to come looking.

    Wolverine traveled with Xavier to his school in New York State and met his fellow new recruits into the X-Men, and joined them on their mission to rescue their predecessors from the island of Krakoa. Splitting up as they approached the island, Wolverine was instructed by team-leader Cyclops to work with Banshee, whose sonic screams irritated Wolverine's sensitive ears. After battling past giant crabs to reach the temple at the center of the island, they were reunited with the others, found the original team imprisoned inside, and freed them, only to be discover their true opponent was the island itself, transformed by nuclear tests into a sentient gestalt mutant entity. A fierce battle ensued before the X-Men were victorious, launching Krakoa into space.

Comments: Created by Roy Thomas (name and basic concept), Len Wein (concept development), John Romita (initial artistic design) and Herb Trimpe (final/published look).

   The concept of this profile is "What if Len Wein had remained the one to develop Wolverine?", and so runs with the idea that the ideas and backstory Len had in mind for the character became Wolverine's canon. Thus it only includes the early stories he wrote for the characters, plus information he revealed in interviews subsequently, in titles including Fantagraphics' X-Men Companion and TwoMorrows Back Issue#04.

    Per Roy Thomas, in 1974 when he was Marvel's Editor-in-Chief, he noted that approximately 5% of Marvel's readers were Canadian, and decided there should be a character to play to that audience. He chose the name Wolverine "because that animal inhabits Canada as well as the Northern United States and would be familiar to both. He could be Canadian and be very fierce. I was thinking of someone much like what evolved, a very fierce character worth his weight in wildcats." Roy also briefly considered calling him the Badger instead, but ultimately went with his original idea. He handed the idea over to Len Wein, giving him only three set-in-stone requirements:

  1. He would be Canadian and announce as much straight away.
  2. He was to be short, because wolverines are small animals.
  3. He was to have a quick temper, because wolverines were known for being fierce and taking on animals bigger than themselves.

    Marvel's then-art director, John Romita was handed the task of designing the new character's appearance, coming up with his costume and thus providing him with his soon-to-be trademark claws; Len decided they should be Adamantium, though he felt they were sheathed in the gloves. Aware that the possibility of a new team of international X-Men was in the cards, and assuming that like the originals, the newcomers would all be young students, he elected to make Wolverine a 19 year old mutant. Herb Trimpe then drew the final version that saw print, and Roy Thomas considers him the fourth and final creator of the character. Dave Cockrum had come up with his own version of a character named Wolverine intended to turn up in DC's Legion of Super-Heroes, but while Roy acknowledges the possibility that Dave might have shown him this idea at some point, he adds that Dave's character did not give him the idea for Marvel's version; Roy already knew what a wolverine was, and if Dave's character had been the inspiration, Roy would not have debated between the names Wolverine and Badger.

     There's a Wolverine in the original costume in Exiles I#85-86 among the Wolverines who fell under Brother Mutant's sway, and also in Deadpool: Too Soon?, watching the match between the Seething Snikters and Amazing Arachnids. While neither of these would have been intended to be Len Wein's version of the character, but rather just a Wolverine who still used the early costume, it's certainly feasible to imagine them to be the above version finally making it to a Marvel Comic and then Earth-616 respectively. If that's considered the case, then his team memberships can be expanded to add "formerly Exiles, Brother Mutant's Wolverine army" and maybe Seething Snikters too (it's not clear if he is a player or just a spectator), and his history expanded to add:

(Exiles I#85 (fb) - BTS) - Wolverine was recruited by the Time Broker to join a team of extradimensional Wolverines and sent to Earth-127 to stop the threat of Brother Mutant, but instead he fell prey to Brother Mutant's mind-control, joining many of his alternate reality counterparts in a massive Wolverine army.

(Exiles I#85) - The Wolverine army attacked the latest Exiles Wolverine team; Earth-74135 Wolverine helped capture Earth-181's Patch and delivered him to Brother Mutant for brainwashing.

(Exiles I#86) - After the Exiles defeated Brother Mutant, all the surviving mind-controlled Wolverines came to their senses and were returned home.

(Deadpool: Too Soon#6) - Wolverine-74135 attended the baseball match between the Seething Snikters interdimensional Wolverines team and Amazing Arachnids interdimensional Spider-Men. When Deadpool crashed the game, Wolverine-74135 joined both teams and the spectators in driving the annoying mercenary off.

Profile by Loki.

CLARIFICATIONS: Wolverine is an alternate reality counterpart of

but has no known connections to:


images: (without ads)
John Romita concept art (main image and headshot)
Exiles I#85, p21, pan3 (under Brother Mutant's control and in his Wolverine army)
Deadpool: Too Soon#6, p49, pan 2 (with Seething Snikters)


Appearances:
Incredible Hulk II#180-181 (October-November 1974) - Len Wein (writer), Herb Trimpe (pencils), Jack Abel (inks), Roy Thomas (editor)
Incredible Hulk II#182 (December 1974) - Len Wein (writer), Herb Trimpe (art), Roy Thomas (editor)
Giant-Size X-Men#1 (May 1975) - Len Wein (writer, editor), Dave Cockrum (artist)


First Posted: 10/15/2019
Last updated:
10/15/2019

Any Additions/Corrections? please let me know.

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