Real Name: Esmera
Identity/Class: Extradimensional (Microverse) extraterrestrial (Kaliklak) humanoid-insectoid
Occupation: Queen of the Insectivorids and of Kaliklak
Group Membership: Planetary Council (Gra'hm of Quarlos IV/Knights of Neep, Icch of B'zzk, Mari of Homeworld's First Zone, Pharoid of Desert Zone, Zoot of the Quor, unidentified Acroyear)
Affiliations: Bug, Slug;
although she didn't directly interact with them, she was allied with all those opposing Karza, including the Acroyears (notably Cilicia), the Micronauts (Acroyear, Biotron, Bug, Marionette, Microtron, Nanotron, Commander Rann), S.H.I.E.L.D. (Supreme Headquarters International Espionage Law-Enforcement Division; notably Nick Fury), Spartak's Worldmind, the Time Travelers/Enigma Force;
she was certainly not ever allied with Shaitan, but his efforts facilated Karza's defeat;
her relationship with Wartstaff is unrevealed; they were likely adversarial, but it is unrevealed whether they ever had any romance or whether he just fertilized an egg she laid;
presumably formerly Argon;
likely Dallan and Sepsis
Enemies: Argon/Force Commander (when possessed by Karza), Baron Karza, Kronos race, Phobos race, Shaitan;
Known Relatives: Bug (son), Jasmine, Lyca, Treefern (daughters); numerous others (an entire generation of Insectivorids)
Aliases: "Ladybug" (nickname used by Bug)
Base of Operations: Unrevealed;
died in Fantasyland, Florida, USA, Earth;
formerly the Great Nest, Kaliklak, Microverse
First Appearance: Micronauts I#26/2 (February, 1981)
Powers/Abilities: As of one Kaliklak's Insectivorids, Esmera can can cling to walls and has extraordinary sight. Her antennae enable communication with others bearing antennae, and provide heightened sensory awareness with a limited degree of danger-sense. Esmera’s speech is interspersed with a “tik” sound due to a chitinous membrane in her throat.
As Queen of the Insectivorids, Esmera has an approximately 1 foot long (relative to her full height; roughly 1/6 of her total height) stinger that allows her to deliver the Suicide-Sting, which can paralyze or kill most beings, but only at the cost of expending her own life force; when it is prepared for use, the stinger extends to its full length, rotates away from her posterior to facilitate its usage, and glows with energy.
Also associated with her nature as a queen, Esmera was oviparous (egg-laying) and the only fertile female on the planet, responsible for the laying of eggs that would be the future generations of Kaliklak.
It would seem likely that Esmera, like her daughter/successor Lyca, grew to adulthood inside her egg and, within her egg, she was aware of all that transpired about her, but was powerless to act until she was ready to hatch. She presumably hatched in a fully-grown form.
Esmera has paired membranous wings (two wings on each side) that allow flight.
Esmera has three spikes on each lateral antebrachium (forearm) and crus (calf) which can presumably be used as weapons.
A skilled and wise leader, she is willing to fight and sacrifice her own life to save her people/universe.
Height: Unrevealed; per estimation (Microverse) 5'10" (she seemed fairly close to the 6'1" Bug in height); (Earth) 5.8"
Weight: Unrevealed; per estimation (Microverse) 135 lbs.); (Earth) 1.25 lbs.
Eyes: Green to yellow (these were either multi-facted and/or covered with a translucent shield)
Skin: Light green
Distinguishing Features: Esmera has paired antennae (with ovoid tips) extending from her eyebrow region, paired membranous wings, spikes on each lateral antebrachium and crus, and two fingers and a thumb, and three toes (two anterior-facing, one posterior).
(Micronauts I#28 (fb) - BTS) - The planet Kaliklak invested in Esmera, it's queen, the power of the deadly suicide sting, which was apparently bred into her.
(Micronauts I#56 - BTS / All-New Official Handbook of the Marvel Universe A to Z#2 (2006) Bug entry) - As queen of the insectivorids, Esmera spawned all of the eggs for her entire race (all of those since the death of her presumed mother/predecessor as queen).
All-New Official Handbook of the Marvel Universe A to Z#2 (2006) Bug entry) - Among the numerous eggs Esmera spawned, at least one was fertilized by Wartstaff and hatching the being that would become known as Bug of the Micronauts.
(Micronauts I#26/2: Tales of the Microverse (fb) - BTS) - As Karza returned to existence, Esmera noted a resurgence of evil on Kaliklak, where the warlike Kronos and Phobos races began defying her imperial edicts from the Great Nest.
(Micronauts I#26/2: Tales of the Microverse (fb) - BTS) - Shortly after Karza overtook Argon as his host body, Princess Mari (aka Marionette) returned to Homeworld, and Esmera was asked to travel to Homeworld for a meeting of the Planetary Council. Esmera swiftly made the journey to Homeworld
(Micronauts I#26/2: Tales of the Microverse) <48 Xats after Mari's return to Homeworld> - The Planetary Council gathered on Homeworld to discuss how they might oppose Karza. After extending Kaliklak's sympathies on the fate of Argon, Esmera noted the defiance of the Kronos and Phobos, fearing that they would again serve Karza.
When Mari sought to bypass Karza's control of the Enigma Force by contacting the Shadow Priests directly, Esmera and the others witnessed that Karza held the Time Travelers in bondage. Esmera resolved that she must return to the Nest to arm her insectivorids for battle.
I#28 - BTS) - Enraged over being treated as a lackey by the
Karza-possessed Argon/Force Commander (and being denied the chance to
take out his brother, Acroyear, himself), Shaitan blocked passage of
Karza's armies from the Microverse to Earth but allowed the assembled
Microverse resistance forces through to reinforce the Micronauts and
Earth's S.H.I.E.L.D. forces.
(Micronauts I#28) - As Acroyear battled Kazar, Esmera landed on Earth at the Fantasyworld Amusement Park site of the conflict.
After Acroyear absorbed the power of the Spartak Worldmind -- which Shaitan had summoned but been destroyed by due to his being a reanimate corpse (as well as dooming the planet Spartak by removing the Worldmind) -- and used it against Karza, Esmera informed Bug there was nothing he could do help.
When Bug replied that if he had hung around on the Nest (Kaliklak) waiting for her to order a revolt against Karza, he would not have survived long enough to help defeat Karza the first time, Esmera told Bug that he was both brave and wise.
However, she continued that the only assault effective against Karza would be the power of a planet, such as Spartak's Worldmind, or her own Suicide Sting, granted via Kaliklak.
Stripping off her robe, Esmera leapt atop Argon's back and -- as she denounced him as a tyrant and vowed his death -- stung him, paralyzing his neurologic system, after which she fell to the ground, dead (as she had known would happen).
Esmera's sacrifice allowed Acroyear to use the Worldmind's power to disperse/disrupt/banish/seemingly destroy Karza.
Comments: Created by Bill Mantlo, Pat Broderick, and Armando Gil.
I would think that the Micronauts took their deceased allies and associates with them when they returned to the Microverse, but I don't think that was confirmed. If I missed it, please point out where the matter was clarified to me. Thanks!
It is interesting that the egg-laying Esmera has the equivalent of human mammary glands. They probably didn't put that much thought into it, especially given that Esmera's daughter Lyca had what appeared to be an umbilicus (belly button, which is the remnant of the connection to the mammalian placenta via the umbilical cord)
Further, we could have a whole discussion about the egg-laying of Esmera, and whether she mirrored the queen of insect hives and provided all of the eggs...and how and when they were fertilized. But, at this time, I will just leave it as unrevealed.
Special thanks to Mike "Spider-Mike" Fichera for helping fully research Esmera.
Profile by Snood.
Esmera should be distinguished from:
Micronauts I#26/2, pg. 3, panel 2 (seated with Planetary Council);
pg. 4, panel 2 (noting resistance of Kronos & Phobos);
#28, pg. 15 (Esmera arriving on Earth);
pg. 19, panel 1 (upper body);
panel 2 (full profile; wings and stinger);
panel 3 (descending on Karza/Argon);
panel 5 (stinging Karza/Argon);
panel 6 (falling, dead)
Micronauts I#26/2 (February, 1981) - Bill Mantlo (writer, co-plotter), Pat Broderick (penciler, co-plotter), Armando Gil (inker), Louise Jones (editor)
Micronauts I#28-29 (April-May, 1981) - Bill Mantlo (writer), Pat Broderick (penciler), Danny Bulanadi (inker), Louise Jones (editor)
Micronauts I#56 (January, 1984) - Bill Mantlo (writer), Butch Guice (penciler), Kelley Jones & Sam Grainger (inkers), Bob Harras (editor)
All-New Official Handbook of the Marvel Universe A to Z#2 (2006) - Jeff Christiansen (head writer), Sean McQuaid, Eric J. Moreels Michael Hoskin, Ronald Byrd, Mark O'English, Barry Reese, Mike Fichera, Stuart Vandal, Madison Carter, & Chris Biggs (writers), Michael Short (assistant editor), Jeff Youngquist & Jen Grunwald (editors)
First posted: 04/20/2021
Last updated: 04/20/2021
Any Additions/Corrections? please let me know.
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