Get to Know a Hero: Medusalith Amaquelin Boltagon

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c. Marvel Comics

Yep. Medusalith Amaquelin. And she still added “Boltagon” when they got hitched. Oh… no… wait… that may have been her name to begin with; she and Blackagar were cousins. What? Royal Family. They do that kind of thing. How do you think hemophilia happened?

Regardless, power to you, Your Highness.

Full Name: Medusalith Amaquelin Boltagon

Aliases: Medusa, Madame Medusa

Birthplace: Attilan

Affiliations: Inhuman Royal Family, Frightful Four, Fantastic Four, Lady Liberators, Dark Riders

Powers: Control of growth rate and movement of each individual strand of her hair (trichokinesis), which is also stronger than steel. She maintains this control even when her hair is cut from her head.

First AppearanceFantastic Four Vol. 1 #36 (1965)

Creators: Stan Lee and Jack Kirby

Medusa, like Black Bolt, was born into the Inhuman Royal Family though she, in contrast to her husband, was exposed to the Terrigen Mist at some point after birth. During Maximus’ first coup attempt, Medusa’s sky sled was shot down and she crashed somewhere on some landmass that wasn’t Attilan. Suffering from amnesia (because of course she was—remember, even clichés start somewhere), she wandered until found by the Wizard who, in the grand tradition of the villainous tools of comics, took advantage of her lack of memory and convinced her to join his evil supergroup, The Frightful Four. Their target? Johnny Storm. The Frightful Four’s constant engagement with the Fantastic Four drew the attention of Black Bolt, who also happened to be on a bit of a walkabout and searching for Medusa. Memory miraculously restored, Medusa rejoined her family in their fight against Maximus.

Medusa, having made the discovery that humans and Inhumans shared the same genetic antecedents, was sent back to human territory by the Inhuman Council and instructed to study human society. Captured by Maximus, who had once again taken the throne, then freed by Black Bolt, Medusa left Attilan alone to seek a cure for the damage done to Black Bolt vocal cords during the escape. She fell under the sway of Enchantress and spent time as a Lady Liberator (because a woman can’t possibly complete mission without falling under someone’s sway, can she?), broke free of Enchantress, and then took Sue Storm’s place in the Fantastic Four when the later decided she needed some space from her husband. After several months, Medusa convinced Sue to reconcile with Reed, after which she returned home to Attilan.

Despite what was undoubtedly a great deal of righteous indignation directed at both her finacé and his brother vis a vis their interminable back and forth, Medusa remained the public face of the Royal Family, serving as an interpreter for Black Bolt. After Attilan was relocated to the Blue Area of the Moon (what? Neil de Grasse Tyson hasn’t written about that yet?), Medusa and Black Bolt got married and pretty much immediately got pregnant (what else are queens for, after all? HUGE EYEROLL), but the Genetic Council deemed the passing of Black Bolt’s powers to be too dangerous and ordered Medusa to terminate. She refused and did a runner, hiding in the desert until the baby was born. She returned to Attilan with the child, who the Council graciously allowed to live but denied his parents any contact. The Genetics Council, which was, in fact, making a play for power, attempted to take the child back to Earth but Medusa followed. Mutually unable to even, both groups gave up their authority and took separate hikes, though the Royal Family found itself in power again with all due expediency and absolutely no explanation.

Medusa and Black Bolt found themselves at odds over Black Bolt’s decision to declare war against the United States over their refusal to return the canister of Terrigen Crystals the military had procured from Quicksilver. The queen suddenly found she could no longer interpret for Black Bolt as accurately as she once had. He grew increasingly frustrated and dismissive and Medusa found herself visiting Maximus in prison frequently, which, considering Boltagon the Younger had treated her like a side of beef in the past, should have been a sign that something was rotten in the state of Attilan. The rotten thing? Medusa’s own mind under Maximus’ influence. The fallout? Black Bolt in prison and Medusa acting as Maximus’ queen.

But it all turned out okay, because that Black Bolt was a Skrull anyway. HOORAY!

c. Marvel Comics

Medusa led the charge to save her husband from Skrull captivity, allying the Inhumans with the Kree. Black Bolt showed his appreciation by taking over the Kree Empire (click here for Black Bolts side of that story). Which is probably why she was a wee bit put out when he failed to tell her he had not, in fact, died in a massive explosion. She both held the Inhuman community together in his absence and forged stronger bonds with human counterparts such as Iron Man, Captain American, and the Fantastic Four in defense of Earth. The couple was later reunited. For a while, anyway.

When Medusa discovered it was Black Bolt who had set off the Terrigen Bomb and destroyed Attilan during his battle with Thanos, she banished him from the throne and for once, he did the smart thing and left it in Medusa’s capable hands. He even took the opportunity, when his powers were once more temporarily suspended, to apologize to his queen and the love of his life. Being a magnanimous type lady, she took him back. After he helped her diffuse the Terrigen Cloud which was fatally toxic to every mutant on the planet.

c. Marvel Comics

More recently, Medusa has appeared in titles such as Ms. Marvel, offering each of the newly activated Inhumans an opportunity to join the community on Attilan. She also acted as a guardian and protector to Ulysses during Civil War II. She continues to attempt reconciliation between Inhumans and humans by facilitating a cultural exchange between the children of the two peoples.

Sources:

Marvel Universe Wiki – Medusa

Marvel Database – Medusalith Amaquelin (Earth-616)

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