SPAWN: Hell's General
"The battle between Heaven and Hell has waged eternal, their armies fueled by souls harvested on Earth. The devil, Malebolgia, has sent a lieutenant to Earth to recruit men who will turn the world into a place of death in exchange for wealth and power, a place that will provide enough souls to complete his army and allow Armageddon to begin. All the Dark Lord needs now is a great soldier, someone who can lead his hordes to the gates of Heaven and burn them down." -- Cogliostro
Who is SPAWN?
SPAWN is Al Simmons, aman who sold his soul to see a loved one once more and seek vengeance on his murderer.
Al Simmons was a very gifted officer of the United States Marine Corps, where he attained the rank of Lieutenant Colonel. He later joined the United States Secret Service, then later the CIA.Simmons was murdered during a mission in Botswana by the order of his Director in the CIA. Afterwards, Simmons is sent to hell because of all he killed in his life. Making a deal with a devil, Simmons agrees to become a HellSPAWN and serve Malebolgia if he is allowed to see his wife, Wanda, one last time.
SPAWN's costume is actually a symbiote, that was forged in Hell and made from necroplasm.
Malebolgia returns Simmons to the world, but with little memory, a badly burned and disfigured body, and magical powers. Simmons slowly realizes that five years have passed. When he decides to visit Wanda for his "one final visit", he shapeshifts his body, but discovers his transformation ability cannot give him his former appearance. He discovers that his wife, Wanda Blake, has since married his best friend. His life over, Simmons has two choices before him: follow Malebolgia, or renounce the devil.
SPAWN without the mask
SPAWN's early adventures were antihero in nature: he takes down street gangs and organized crime. He takes over the alleys that comprise "Rat City" and befriends the homeless within it, becoming their champion.
SPAWN uses his military background by sometimes utilizing firearms
One Iconic look of SPAWN is his "Shoestring Face" where a deep wound on his face was held together by a shoestring. The wound is courtesy of the Dark Knight, Batman.
Later SPAWN's costume evolved into a more advanced form. The formerly immaculate shroud became ragged and shredded, and his costume lost its red coloring and became pure black and white. SPAWN's gloves and boots also morphed, becoming heavily armored and covered with spikes. SPAWN's costume was now much more powerful, and the shroud and chains were capable of shapeshifting to a much greater degree.
SPAWN struggled to find a way to free himself from Hell's control and recapture his humanity. Attacks from both Heaven and Hell were coming faster and faster, and SPAWN was on the verge of losing himself to the violence and the evil. Eventually SPAWN will find himself in the Garden of Eden, and was about to eat from the Tree of Life, when he was slain by Judas. Fortunately for him, the Mother of all creation imparted to him the power of the forbidden fruit and SPAWN was resurrected into a new form - his cloak and chains are gone, replaced with shining white wings. SPAWN now possessed powers of a god.
SPAWN after recreating Earth, gave up his divine powers, returned to earth as a human but later gained again his "HellSPAWN" powers.
Other SPAWN versions (I'll leave it to the bigger SPAWN fanatics to identify all of them, most of these are not Al Simmons):
LIVE MEDIA APPEARANCE
SPAWN's first, and as of the moment only, live movie was in 1997. The film was directed and co-written by Mark A.Z. Dippé (a former Industrial Light & Magic animator) and executive produced by McFarlane and Alan Blomquist. The movie starred Michael Jai White as Al Simmons/SPAWN.
POWERS & ABILITIES
Note: Due to the nature of comicbooks being an on-going tale, the character's powers along with his appearance, is in a constant state of flux.
While SPAWN's abilities have fluctuated over the years, his core powerset is derived from the necroplasm that makes up his body. This dense substance grants him superhuman strength, speed, agility, senses, durability and a regenerative healing factor. His necroplasm also gives him necro-magic, a variety of supernatural powers including teleportation, phasing, resurrecting the dead, necro-energy blasts, and much more. However, his magic is limited by a meter which starts at 9,999 and drains each time he uses his necro-energy. He is able to "feed" off the evil energy of the world including people and dark animals (rats, bats, roaches, worms, insects, wolves, and snakes). He is also an empathic being able to sense the emotions of others whenever he chooses. He can manipulate the elements and fly.
SPAWN wears a living, sentient necroplasm-based female symbiote suit, Leetha of the 7th house of K (K7-Leetha). The suit feeds from the necroplasm in SPAWN's body and his cape, spikes, and chains are all part of an organism that is bonded to his central nervous system; because of this connection he can mentally manipulate the suit to perform shapeshifting feats without draining his necro-meter.
Although SPAWN is virtually immortal, he may be killed by a holy weapon forged in Heaven or by his own necro-power. He is also rendered powerless (and therefore mortal) in places that are immune to the influence of Hell such as The Dead Zone (a patch of alley that is touched by Heaven) and the Greenworld.
Sources: http://kesslerkomics.com/?p=9249 : http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Spawn_(comics) : http://imagecomics.wikia.com/wiki/Spawn : http://www.comicvine.com/spawn-simmons/29-3381/ : http://www.comicvine.com/spawn-simmons/29-3381/spawn/108-315/
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