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Superhero Origins: Archangel

VO: Dan Paradis
Years after he became a founding member of the X-Men, Warren, otherwise known as Angel, was dealt irreversible damage to his wings. Soon after, doctors were forced to amputate them in order to save his life, causing Warren to be overcome with anguish and depression. Feeling helpless and aiming to kill himself, he was saved by an unlikely source, his enemy Apocalypse. Join and today we will explore the comic book origin of Archangel. Special thanks to our user J.TOhMyGod!!! for submitting the idea on our WatchMojo.comsuggest page!

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*Script written by Matthew Thomas

Superhero Origins: Archangel

He’s not quite as angelic anymore. Welcome to and today we will explore the comic book origin of Archangel.

As with most comic book characters, there are often re-imaginings and different versions to a character’s past. We have chosen to primarily follow the storyline which unfolded in 1987’s “X-Factor” issues # 10-18 & 23-25, which was expanded on in 1996’s Uncanny X-Men #338, as well as 2008’s X-Force # 4 & 5.

Years after he became a founding member of the X-Men, Warren, otherwise known as Angel found himself in tunnels below Manhattan trying to stave off a vicious attack on a group of mutants known as the Morlocks. A group of evil mutants known as the Marauders were on a rampage killing the largely defenceless Morlocks, and Angel and his cohorts in X-Factor were not going to stand idly by and let that happen.

Unfortunately for Warren he was overcome by two of the who pinned him to a wall by his wings, causing irreparable damage. Soon after, doctors were forced to amputate the wings in order to save his life, causing to Warren to be overcome with anguish and depression as he was stripped of the thing that made him whole. Feeling helpless and worthless, he set flight the only way he could now, in one of his planes, before attempting to kill himself.

Saved by an unlikely source, his enemy the elitist mutant known as Apocalypse, Angel found himself being altered against his will and turned into one of the Four Horsemen known as Death, or Archangel. Now with sking and new metal techno-organic wings that had the ability to launch metal, poison tipped “feathers”, Archangel became far more dangerous than Angel ever was. Now the leader of the Apocalypse’s Four Horsemen, Archangel revealed his identity to his long-time friends and teammates before viciously attacking them.

While they attempted to reason with him and somehow get him to remember his former self, Archangel and his fellow horsemen made their escape to wreak havoc on New York. Forced into another battle, Archangel didn't hold back and came to believe that he’d killed Iceman, his old friend Bobby Drake. The shock this had on his allows him to break his programming and re-join X-Factor.

In the years that followed Archangel continued to fight crime, using the wings that Apocalypse gave him despite a love hate relationship with them, until they one day wilted away, revealing feather wings underneath them. Not sure what caused this transition, Archangel found himself transitioning back completely to his original form with his original skin colour returning too.

Happy to be whole again Warren’s life is again thrust into upheaval when his wings are yet again torn off, this time by a fellow Xavier follower, Rahne Sinclair, who’d lost control of her feral Wolfsbane self. Finding himself wingless again, something truly shocking took place as his wings regrew almost immediately, but this time his metal techno-organic reasserted themselves and his skin went back to the familiar shade of blue. Now able to switch back and forth between Angel and Archangel forms, Warren could be at peace at moment and then turn deadly scary in an instant.

Archangel has made appearances in both the nineties X-Men cartoon and Wolverine and the X-Men. He is also heavily included in the 2005 video game X-Men Legends II: Rise of Apocalypse as a villain.

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