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Arthur Blackwood (Earth-616)

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Quote1 This is the beginning of a new age, child -- presaged by a new crusade which will leave no one untouched! An angel with the beauty of a goddess has revealed to me my part in it as holy crusader -- flaming scythe to the unholy! A herald of the true word! Quote2
-- Crusader src
 

Early Life

Arthur Blackwood was born in Decatur, Illinois. He was a seminary student in Chicago who believed that the church should become more active in fighting paganism and godlessness in modern society. Dismissed from the seminary for getting into an altercation with a superior. [2]

Crusader

Blackwoods from Thor 330

Arthur with his sword drawn.

Blackwood visited his family crypt to meditate on his life. There he had a religious vision of all of his ancestors who devoted their lives to serving God. In this vision he met the spirit of one of his ancestors who served in the Crusades. This spirit seemingly bequeathed to him the combined power of all his ancestors and dubbed him knight. When Blackwood awoke from this vision, he discovered a sword, shield, and knight's raiment had inexplicably materialized nearby. Blackwood decided to take up the sword and use his newfound power to destroy all pagans and infidels. As his first target, he chose the thunder god Thor, whose claims of godhood seemed blasphemous. [2]

Calling himself the Crusader, Blackwood attacked Thor at a public assembly. Somehow the strength of his faith granted him sufficient power not only to hold his own in pitched battle with the Asgardian, but also to inflict upon Thor a seemingly mortal wound. When Thor reappeared a short time later, his wound fully healed by the power of Odin the Crusader's belief in his own infallibility was shaken. The Crusader was unable to comprehend how a supposed agent of the devil like Thor could be superior to him, a self-styled messenger of the Lord. When Thor shattered the Crusader’s sword, the Crusader fled, filled with doubts about the righteousness of his cause.[3]

Crusader

Arthur with his sword drawn.

Others

Blackwood's doubt has often caused him to lose battles rather than win them this first occurred when fighting the Black Knight.[4] Luke Cage has also able to defeat Blackwood after breaking his sword and once again causing Blackwood to doubt his cause leading, in turn, to yet another defeat.[5] His doubt also led him to defeat at the hands of Natie Grey, a.k.a. X-Man.[6]

The Raft

Not too long after the dis-assembly of the Avengers, Electro conducted the breakout of maximum security prison the Raft.[7] Blackwood was held as a prisoner here but would soon escape along with many other prisoners. This escape once again inspired Blackwood to continue his crusade, starting with Doctor Strange. However, his newest crusade would also be last as Strange would use his powers to send Blackwood back to the Raft.[8]

Civil War

During the Civil War; Blackwood was still active and had organized a religious group of thugs for himself[9]. After hijacking a plane filled with money and planning to bomb the headquarters of several super-heroes, the Crusader and his men are stopped by Wolverine after he hears about their operation. In the process, Wolverine gouges out the Crusader's right eye, while quoting the Bible with "An eye for an eye." However, Wolverine is unable to prevent the plane from crashing down into a cornfield. On impact, the plane suddenly explodes. Wolverine survives the crash, but whether or not the Crusader survived is initially unclear.[10]

Hood Gang

Blackwood survived, he joined the Hood's Gang to take advantage of the split in the superhero community caused by the Superhuman Registration Act[11]

Power Grid [13]
Intelligence
 3
Strength*
 2
Speed
 3
Durability
Energy Projection
 1
Fighting Skills
* Strength increases with self-confidence

Powers

Religious Faith: The Crusader possesses various superhuman attributes as a result of undergoing a religious vision in which was seemingly endowed with the combined powers of all of his ancestors who had served God.

  • Superhuman Strength: While at his peak, the Crusader possesses superhuman strength sufficient to lift at least 25 tons.
  • Superhuman Speed: The Crusader is capable of running and moving at a rate of speed that is superior to that of the finest human athlete.
  • Superhuman Stamina: The Crusader's musculature produces considerably less fatigue toxins during physical activity than the musculature of an ordinary human. At his peak, he can physically exert himself for about 24 hours before the build up of fatigue toxins in his blood stream begins to impair him.
  • Superhuman Durability: The tissues of the Crusader's body are much harder and more resistant to physical injury than those of an ordinary human. He can withstand powerful impact forces such as being repeatedly struck by Thor, temperature and pressure extremes, and powerful energy blasts without sustaining injury.
  • Superhuman Agility: The Crusader's agility, balance, and bodily coordination are enhanced to levels that are beyond the natural physical limits of even the finest human athlete.
  • Superhuman Reflexes: The Crusader's reflexes are similarly enhanced and are superior to those of the finest human athlete.

Abilities

The Crusader is a formidable combatant and is particularly skilled in using a sword and shield in battle.

Weaknesses

The source of the Crusader's powers is an unidentified mystical link that is in direct proportion to his faith. If his faith falters, his superhuman attributes also diminish at a level proportionate to his diminished faith.


Equipment

Crusader garb, mystical sword and shield which are said to be powered by his faith in God.

Weapons

The Crusader typically carries a sword and a shield. In his initial appearances, he used a sword and a shield of unknown composition that were both durable enough to withstand multiple, direct blows from Thor's hammer before shattering. It isn't known if his current weapons are as durable.

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