Comic Book Origins: Psylocke

Script written by Craig Butler. Going completely mental means something totally different for this powerful telepath. Join WatchMojo.com as we explore the comic book origin of Psylocke. As with most comic book characters, there are often re-imaginations and different versions to a character's past. We have chosen primarily to follow the storyline which unfolded in 1976's Captain Britain #8, 1977's Captain Britain #34, 1986's Captain Britain #13, 1986's New Mutants Annual #2 and 1987's Uncanny X-Men #213 and was expanded on in 2001's X-Treme X-Men #3 and 2013's Uncanny X-Force #3. Special thanks to our users realsupremenico, Janryll Isurita and hugo_atencia for submitting the idea using our interactive suggestion tool at WatchMojo.comsuggest
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Script written by Craig Butler.

Superhero Origins: Psylocke


Going completely mental means something totally different for this powerful telepath. Welcome to WatchMojo.com and today we will explore the comic book origin of Psylocke.

As with most comic book characters, there are often re-imaginations and different versions to a character’s past. We have chosen primarily to follow the storyline which unfolded in 1976's Captain Britain #8, 1977's Captain Britain #34, 1986's Captain Britain #13, 1986's New Mutants Annual #2 and 1987's Uncanny X-Men #213 and was expanded on in 2001's X-Treme X-Men #3 and 2013's Uncanny X-Force #3.

Betsy Braddock, the British-born adventurer who became known as Psylocke, is one of several mutants in the Marvel universe with psychic and telepathic powers. Her abilities include creating psychic blasts, mind control and the ability to manifest her powers into weapons, like her trademark psychic knife.

As a mutant, Betsy was born with her powers, although they remained dormant until well into her teen years. The path that she took to becoming Psylocke was a bit convoluted and took several years.

When Betsy first appeared in 1976, little was known about her except that she was the sister of Brian Braddock, the superhero known as Captain Britain. An accomplished aviator, Betsy was flying Brian home when the villainous Dr. Synne caused her to experience bizarre dreams, causing her to crash the plane. Both our heroes survived, but this event may have played a role in developing her inherent telepathic abilities, as these abilities were especially acute when Brian was in danger.

Eventually Betsy began a career as a fashion model, using her superpowers sparingly. However, when Brian abandoned his superhero activities, Betsy was persuaded to become the new Captain Britain. In this guise she had a fateful encounter with the villain known as Slaymaster, in which she was blinded and severely beaten. The original Captain Britain showed up too late to help her, but made sure the villain would never hurt her again.

Later the same year, Betsy adopted the name Psylocke and was enslaved by a powerful being named Lord Mojo, who also restored her sight. Upon her escape, she became one of the students at Professor Xavier's school for mutants. During a battle with the evil Sabretooth, Psylocke proved her mettle and was admitted as a full-fledged member of the X-Men.

A little more information about Betsy's earlier days was revealed in re-tellings of her origin in 2001 and again in 2013. In these versions, readers learned that Betsy moved from the U.K. to the U.S. to pursue a modeling career when she was sixteen years old. She had suffered from migraines for some time, but now they worsened considerably. This turned out to be part of the "switch" as her mutant powers went from latent to full-blown.

Betsy became extremely successful as a model, reaching a level of recognition that was truly impressive. But even then, she was involved in heroic activities, working as a government agent. As a supermodel, she had access to the infamous Hellfire Club and was tasked with infiltrating it and retrieving vital information. There she met Sage, another telepathic mutant, who was working undercover for Professor Xavier. This encounter eventually led to her involvement with the X-Men.

Psylocke is one of the most powerful telepaths in the Marvel Universe. Combined with her early government training, this makes her dangerous for villains to cross. The Psylocke of today is a far cry from the Betsy Braddock of 1976.

Are you a fan of the mind-bending Psylocke? For more comic book origins, be sure to subscribe to WatchMojo.com.

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