Batroc the Leaper

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Batroc the Leaper
Batroc.png
Batroc the Leaper
Art by Luke Ross
Publication information
PublisherMarvel Comics
First appearanceTales of Suspense #75 (March 1966)
Created byStan Lee
Jack Kirby
In-story information
Alter egoGeorges Batroc
Team affiliationsThunderbolts
Batroc's Brigade
Masters of Evil
Legion Accursed
Notable aliasesThe Leaper
AbilitiesSavate and martial arts expert
Olympic level athlete and weightlifter
Extraordinary agility and reflexes
Skilled military tactician
Experienced thief and smuggler
 
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Batroc the Leaper
Batroc.png
Batroc the Leaper
Art by Luke Ross
Publication information
PublisherMarvel Comics
First appearanceTales of Suspense #75 (March 1966)
Created byStan Lee
Jack Kirby
In-story information
Alter egoGeorges Batroc
Team affiliationsThunderbolts
Batroc's Brigade
Masters of Evil
Legion Accursed
Notable aliasesThe Leaper
AbilitiesSavate and martial arts expert
Olympic level athlete and weightlifter
Extraordinary agility and reflexes
Skilled military tactician
Experienced thief and smuggler

Batroc the Leaper (Georges Batroc) is a fictional villain from Marvel Comics. His first appearance was in Tales of Suspense #75, 1966.[1] He is a mercenary and a master of the French form of kick boxing known as savate. Writer Mark Waid described the character as ahead of his time, elaborating "He was a Jean-Claude Van Damme, but he was in the 1960s."[2]

Georges St-Pierre plays the character in the 2014 film Captain America: The Winter Soldier.

Publication history[edit]

Batroc, created by Stan Lee and Jack Kirby, first appeared in Tales of Suspense #75 in March 1966. He has reappeared in various Marvel titles ever since. [3]

Sporting a new costume designed by John Romita, Jr., Batroc served as Klaw's top lieutenant in the first arc of the 2005 re-launch of Reginald Hudlin's Black Panther.[4]

Fictional character biography[edit]

Georges Batroc was born in Marseille, France, and served in the French Foreign Legion. He is a French costumed mercenary who specializes in savate (also known as "La Boxe Française"), a form of kickboxing. Although he has primarily appeared in the pages of Captain America, he has also faced off against the Punisher, Spider-Man, Deadpool, Hawkeye, Iron Fist and Gambit. Batroc has occasionally led his own team "Batroc's Brigade" although membership has changed over time. The group has primarily fought Captain America.

In the character's first appearance, he was hired by THEM to steal the Inferno-42 cylinder. He first battled Captain America during this mission. When Batroc introduced himself with typical bluster, Cap revealed, to Batroc's delight, that he had already heard of the mercenary: "Batroc the Leaper, eh? A master of la savate, the French art of boxing with the feet!"[5] Later, he was again hired by HYDRA and abducted Sharon Carter for them. He lured Captain America into a rematch, in which he insisted Hydra not intervene, and again lost; however, when HYDRA agents prepared to kill both Cap and himself, Batroc, incensed at such "men wizout honair," switched sides to help Cap against HYDRA.[6] In both of these stories, Batroc was regarded as a deadly combatant, his skill respected by enemies and employers alike.

Batroc was then hired by a foreign power to locate a "seismo-bomb" with the first known Batroc's Brigade (consisting of the original Swordsman and the Living Laser). Batroc battled Captain America again.[7] The Machinesmith's Baron Strucker android known as "the Hood" then hired a new Batroc's Brigade (consisting of Porcupine and Whirlwind) to battle Captain America.[8]

Batroc then formed a third Batroc's Brigade, which consisted of various unnamed henchmen rather than known supervillains since supervillains had failed Batroc in the past. The alien Jakar, concealing his true nature and intent, hired this group to abduct children from New York and to battle Captain America and Falcon. Although Batroc felt no compunction about abducting children, upon learning Jakar's true nature and his intent to use the children's souls to revive his comatose race, he felt his "sense of honair" had been violated by the deception, and he again switched sides, aiding Captain America and the Falcon to rescue the children.[9] Ward Meachum then hired Batroc's Brigade, who battled Iron Fist and a ninja warrior, several Brigade members dying in the process.[10]

For a while after that, Batroc operated without a Brigade. Alongside an extra-dimensional demon ally, Batroc attempted a theft of transuranium, but was stopped by Captain America and Spider-Man.[11] Batroc was also a member of the ersatz "Defenders", a group of villains who were impersonating the actual Defenders. They committed robberies while posing as members of the Defenders, until stopped by a Defenders contingent.[12] Alongside Mister Hyde, Batroc attempted an extortion scheme against Manhattan. He battled Captain America, but when Mister Hyde decided to carry out the threat, which would kill thousands, Batroc, again showing that there were some lines he would not cross, aided Captain America against Hyde, saving the city.[13]

Batroc then formed a new, longer-lasting lineup of Batroc's Brigade - this one consisting of Zaran the Weapons Master and Machete. This team was first seen when Obadiah Stane contracted them to steal Captain America's shield and Batroc finally succeeded.[14] Trick Shot then hired Batroc's Brigade to battle Hawkeye.[15] Baron Helmut Zemo then hired Batroc's Brigade to acquire the fragments of the Bloodstone. They battled Captain America and Diamondback.[16] Alongside Snakebite, Batroc also battled the Punisher.[17]

Later, the Leaper showed up as member of a small army of villains organized by Klaw to invade Wakanda, which included Rhino, Radioactive Man, the Cannibal, and the villainous Black Knight. He was defeated by Black Panther's royal bodyguards.[18]

During the crossover JLA/Avengers, Batroc briefly confronted Batman when he was one of the villains recruited by Krona for his army. The Dark Knight defeated him (off-panel).[19]

Batroc has a daughter who is teamed in villainy with the daughter of similar B-list supervillain Tarantula. Both daughters take their fathers' respective costumes and titles. Taskmaster expresses his shock that Tarantula and Batroc are heterosexual before soundly beating the two villains' offspring, tossing them effortlessly off of a building, noting that he also "hates ethnic stereotypes."[20]

Batroc briefly served among the group of villains forcibly drafted into Baron Zemo's Thunderbolts army. But after returning to federal custody, Batroc registered with the Superhuman Registration Act,[21][22] and was sent to a superhuman training facility located at Marine Corps Base Quantico in Virginia to train recruits in martial arts[23] before being transferred over to Camp Hammond.[24]

Ultimately, however, Batroc found government work unsatisfactory and returned to his mercenary life, confronting the new Captain America while on a job to steal an item from the United Nations.[25] Also, he was working with The Man with No Face, a mysterious being from Captain America's past.[26] It is soon revealed that Batroc was stealing the original Human Torch's remains for reverse engineering.[27]

Powers and abilities[edit]

Batroc the Leaper has no superhuman abilities, but is in peak physical condition in every respect. He is an Olympic-level weightlifter and has extraordinary agility and reflexes. His leg muscles are particularly well developed enabling him to leap great distances equal to an Olympic athlete. He is an expert hand-to-hand combatant and specializes in savate (French-style kickboxing). He is also a skilled military tactician, having formerly been in the French Foreign Legion.

Batroc is also an experienced thief and smuggler, and can speak both French and English. Although, as a mercenary, he does not hesitate to perform any number of criminal acts for his clients, Batroc has, by his own rights, a strong sense of honor, and he will turn against any client whom he feels has unfairly deceived him into committing crimes to which he might not otherwise have agreed.

Other versions[edit]

Ultimate Marvel[edit]

The Ultimate Marvel incarnation of Batroc the Leaper is a French jewelry thief. This version's martial arts skills are also present. When he and his thugs were robbing a jewelry store, they're stopped by the new Spider-Man's "venom strike".[28]

MC2[edit]

In the MC2 reality, Batroc the Leaper still operates his own criminal syndicate, until stopped by American Dream.[29]

Marvel Zombies[edit]

A zombiefied version of Batroc the Leaper appears in the third installment of the Marvel Zombies series, where he was killed by Carl Creel's trademark concrete ball and chain.[30]

House of M[edit]

In the House of M reality, Batroc the Leaper is a member of the The Hood's extensive-criminal empire.[31] He participated in the takeover of Santo Rico and stayed to fight when the Red Guard came, to protect the sapiens population. He was the first of them to die, attacked by Agent Toad and terminated by two S.H.I.E.L.D.'s soldiers.[32]

In other media[edit]

Television[edit]

Film[edit]

Video games[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ Misiroglu,Gina Renée &Eury, Michael, The Supervillain Book: The Evil Side of Comics and Hollywood, 2006, p. 439.
  2. ^ Senreich, Matthew (August 1997). "The Wizard Q&A: Mark Waid & Ron Garney". Wizard (72). pp. 68–72. 
  3. ^ Tales of Suspense #75
  4. ^ Black Panther #1
  5. ^ Tales of Suspense #75-76
  6. ^ Tales of Suspense #85
  7. ^ Captain America #105
  8. ^ Captain America #130
  9. ^ Captain America #149-150
  10. ^ Marvel Premiere #20
  11. ^ Marvel Team-Up #52
  12. ^ Defenders #63-64
  13. ^ Captain America #251-252
  14. ^ Captain America #302-303
  15. ^ Solo Avengers #3
  16. ^ Captain America #357-362
  17. ^ Punisher #67
  18. ^ Black Panther #1-6 (2005)
  19. ^ JLA/Avengers #4
  20. ^ Agent X #6
  21. ^ Avengers: The Initiative #1.
  22. ^ "Avengers: The Initiative #1 Character Map". Marvel.com. Retrieved 2011-01-11. 
  23. ^ Iron Man #14
  24. ^ Anthony Flamini & Ronald Byrd (w). Civil War Battle Damage Report one-shot (March 2007), Marvel Comics
  25. ^ Captain America vol. 5 #43
  26. ^ Captain America vol 5 #44
  27. ^ Captain America vol. 5 #45
  28. ^ Ultimate Comics: Spider-Man Vol. 2 #13
  29. ^ American Dream #2
  30. ^ Marvel Zombies 3 #3
  31. ^ House of M: Masters of Evil #1
  32. ^ House of M: Masters of Evil #4
  33. ^ "Comics Continuum". Comics Continuum. 2009-07-28. Retrieved 2011-01-11. 
  34. ^ http://marvel.toonzone.net/news.php?action=fullnews&id=785
  35. ^ Ultimate Spider-Man episode "Why I Hate Gym"
  36. ^ Johnston, Mike (March 25, 2013). "UFC’s GSP lands role in Captain America sequel". Sportsnet. Archived from the original on March 26, 2013. Retrieved March 25, 2013. 
  37. ^ http://www.mtv.com/news/articles/1723787/marvel-avengers-alliance-captain-america-winter-soldier-guardians-of-the-galaxy.jhtml

External links[edit]