Friday, January 11, 2013

Judas Traveller

Judas Traveller is a perfect example of a recurring problem with "mysterious" characters: the writer forgetting to fleshing out the character in advance. No one fleshed Judas out in advance and had to make stuff up as they were going along. Spider-Man writer Glenn Greenberg said "no one – not the writers, not the editors – seemed to know who or what the hell Judas Traveller was. He was seemingly this immensely powerful, quasi-mystical being with amazing abilities, but what was the real deal with him? ... But to be honest, a character like Traveller didn't really fit into Spider-Man's world."
It was revealed Judas Traveller (yes that is his real name) was a criminal psychologist that had mutant powers triggered by a mental breakdown. Traveller, now thinking he is an vastly powerful immortal, became fascinated by the nature of good and evil. Somehow, he got a group of super powered croonies called "the Host". He visited the Ravencroft Institute and read the mind of the insane crimnals (all Spider-Man villains) thus learning of their hatred of Spider-Man. He then gave Spider-Man a dilemma: if Spider-Man couldn't stop him, the crimnals die. If he did stop him, the inmates go free. Peter Parker and Ben Reilly (a clone of Peter) stopped the inmates, but Judas escaped. Later, Judas tried and failed to get Peter to commit murder. Then, he and his host tried to mess with a geothermal station so it would destory New York City. Traveller was defeated once again. The next time we saw Judas, he was forcing Peter to be part of trial with the inmates of Ravencroft as jury. He unmasked Peter. However, after Kaine (a villain) risked his life to save Peter, Judas decided to erase the unmasking from everyone's minds and let Peter go. Travelller was captured by people working for Norman Osborn (aka the Green Goblin). Norman claimed Traveller was somehow part of his revenge plan.
Judas had some mental powers. He can read minds. However, his main power was to alter people's perceptions. He used this to fake his other powers. However, the extent of his powers are ill-defined at best.
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