Minor Secret Invasion #1 Spoilers Ahead.

April 7, 2008

We interrupt this Crime Lords Month for an important history lesson!

Of all the characters I expected to find in a splash page of potential Skrull plants, the former Avenger Mockingbird was not one of them.

Who is Mockingbird? Let me explain…

Barbara “Bobbi” Morse was a highly trained agent of S.H.I.E.L.D. who worked with Nick Fury to expose corruption within the organization. Originally known as ‘The Huntress,’ Morse eventually left S.H.I.E.L.D. and adopted the identity of “Mockingbird” as she left to pursue work for private industries. It was there she began a romance with Clint Barton, aka Hawkeye, and the two were quickly married.

Mockingbird had no superpowers. Instead, she was an incredibly skilled martial artist, and carried a battle-stalve as her weapon of choice. She used these skills to fight alongside the Avengers, eventually forming the West Coast Avengers with her husband. During this time Mockingbird met the Great Lakes Avengers, and helped to train the superhero team during their early years.

Unfortunately, Mockingbird soon found herself at odds with her husband following the West Coast Avengers confrontation with a villain known as The Phantom Rider. The Rider had drugged and kidnapped Mockingbird, and when she was given an opportunity to spare his life she chose not to. Instead, she allowed him to fall to his death during battle, something which greatly upset her husband. The two continued working together on the Avengers, but things would never be the same between them.

Before the two could reconcile their differences Mockingbird was kidnapped one again, this time by the demon Mephisto. Clint Barton quickly sent the team into Mephisto’s realm to rescue her, but in the ensuing battle Mockingbird was killed. Mockingbird’s death remains one of the most significant deaths in Avengers history, and it is something that continues to haunt her husband to this day. The current Hawkeye, Kate Bishop, wields battle-stalves to honor the memory of Mockingbird.

However, the legacy of Mockingbird did not end there. Several years later Clint Barton led a group of heroes to return to Mephisto’s realm, where he hoped to win back the soul of his dead wife. Sadly Mephisto’s trickery proved to be too much, and the group inadvertedly resurrected Hellcat instead. Whoops.

Since then Mockingbird’s greatest appearance has been in the Land of the Dead, fighting alongside Dead Girl and Dr. Strange to restore meaning to death in the Marvel Universe. Mockingbird has been offered the chance to return to the realm of the living, but refused, insisting that she still has a purpose to serve in death.

So, yes, Mockingbird (or a Skrull disguising themself as her) is alive and well once again in the Marvel Universe. Given the importance placed on the character’s death over the years, I would suspect that this is merely a piece of Skrull trickery.

Dead or alive, it doesn’t really matter though. What I really want to see is her face on a VS. card.

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