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Karla Sofen (Earth-616)

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Quote1 Lady, you are crazy! And I have an M.D. in psychiatry... So when, I say you're crazy... You're crazy. Quote2
-- Ms. Marvel src
 

Early life

Karla Sofen grew up the daughter of a maid to a privileged family. She was forced to be a "playmate" to Deanna Stockbridge, the family's daughter who was her age. Deanna saw Karla as a true friend, but Karla chaffed at being so close to wealth but being unable to call it her own. Still, she developed a talent for manipulating the naïve Deanna for her own amusement. Karla graduated college thanks to her mother working multiple jobs to support her education, and promised she would never be in the same situation herself.[7]

Karla Sofen (Earth-616)

Karla Sofen's first appearance from Captain America #192

After becoming a psychologist, Karla enjoyed manipulating her patients for her own ends. Since she couldn't afford for her jealous housewife patient to be "cured" of her paranoia just yet, Karla called the house pretending to be a lover of her patient's husband in order to keep her coming back for more sessions.[8] Karla trained under the tutelage of the criminal Doctor Faustus. She even assisted Doctor Faustus in his grandiose attempt to take control of Manhattan Island. Faustus' plans never came to fruition however, due to the efforts of Captain America. As Cap rounded up Faustus' men, Sofen hid herself inside the baggage compartment of the doctor’s private 747, thus evading capture.[9]

Moonstone

She later used her psychiatric credentials to gain access to the prison cell of Lloyd Bloch – the original Moonstone. Using hypnosis, she convinced Bloch that he was in fact a hideous, loathsome monster. The psychological trauma was so severe that it caused his body to reject the moonstone within him. Energized by the emotional rush, Karla was able to absorb the essence of the moonstone through a sheer act of will. The intensity of the transfer was so great that it even granted Karla the ability to absorb Bloch's Moonstone armor into her own bodily tissue. With Bloch now powerless, Karla Sofen became the new Moonstone.[10]

The Corporation

A short time later, Moonstone decided to hire herself out to the subversive organization known as the Corporation. The Corporation sent Moonstone on a mission to Gamma Base in New Mexico to purloin a top-secret piece of military hardware known as a Gammavator. She gained access as Dr. Sofen by offering professional help to fellow psychiatrist Leonard Samson, who had been impressed by Sofen's heterodox attitude at the Utrecht Conference. Once in Gamma Base, she opposed the gamma-spawned monster, the incredible Hulk. At first, Moonstone was able to provoke the Hulk into a savage frenzy, thereby earning her the sympathy of psychiatric colleague Doc Samson, but before long, the Hulk overpowered Moonstone, exposing her identity of Dr. Karla Sofen.[11]

Blackout

Moonstone was recruited by Egghead to join his Masters of Evil. She acted as his field leader during his campaign against Henry Pym.[12] When Egghead was killed and the scam went south, Karla eagerly volunteered to testify about how Egghead framed Hank Pym for various crimes...in exchange for a reduced sentence.[11] She was held at Project Pegasus for study. During a diversion elsewhere within Project Pegasus, another prisoner, Blackout, managed to escape his containment cell. Karla managed to manipulate Blackout into deeply and instinctively trusting her, and they made their escape despite the Avengers' presence.[13]

Moonstone used her energy powers to ascertain where they were and helped Blackout navigate them out of the Darkforce dimension to the Earth's moon. Moonstone hoped to augment her superhuman powers on the Moon's surface, but before she could do so, members of the Moon's resident race, the Inhumans, aided by the mutant Dazzler, overpowered the two escaped criminals. Blackout and Moonstone were taken back to Earth and were returned to captivity at Project: Pegasus.[14]

Masters of Evil

Years later, Dr. Sofen joined the Masters of Evil.[12] She was a part of the group that participated in the infamous siege on Avengers Mansion.[15] While fleeing from Captain Marvel, Moonstone slammed into the side of a mountain and broke her neck, remaining hospitalized for some time.[16]

Karla Sofen (Earth-616) 0003

Karla as Meteorite

Thunderbolts

When most of the worlds heroes disappeared after the Onslaught crisis, Sofen again teamed with Baron Zemo. Under the guise of Meteorite, she was a founding member of the Thunderbolts, a team of super-villains masquerading as heroes to gain the trust of the people long enough for Zemo to steal sensitive S.H.I.E.L.D. files. Eventually their cover was broken, but Karla joined most of her teammates in sustaining the Thunderbolts as a true superhero team.

With the aid of Hawkeye, the Thunderbolts came to be viewed as true heroes. Karla was pardoned for her past crimes, but was soon drawn back into the heroic life. On Counter-Earth, she obtained another Moonstone through deception. She also became romantically involved with Hawkeye.

Her increased powers and instability began to worry the other members. Graviton also began confronting her. While the two demonstrated their power, Graviton secretly levitated a pebble and used it to murder one of Karla's childhood friends. Karla's discovery of this seemed to drive her mad. During a battle between the Avengers and Thunderbolts, Hawkeye was forced to use a special arrow to inhibit her intangibility long enough for Vision to remove her moonstones.

Sofen was left comatose after these events and Baron Zemo gained control of the moonstones. From that point on, he manipulated her to do his bidding for him; her mind however, was still not functional. This changed after Songbird sent Zemo into a whirlwind of cosmic time/space releasing Sofen from his control. Her body was retrieved by the Commission on Superhuman Activities and remained in one of their facilities. Songbird was mentally linked through the moonstones' power when betraying Zemo. Karla and her teammate came out of their individual comas, with Karla mentally stable and her powers under control with one of the moonstones in her possession again.

Sofen became the field leader of Norman Osborn's Thunderbolts sponsored the U.S. Government in conclusion of the Superhuman Civil War. Although she was initially uninterested, a blackmail from Norman Osborn threatening to surgically remove her moonstone from her body left her with little choice because the action would leave her comatose. Although she served her function on the team, she proved less-than effective as the team leader (she tried to rush through the Thunderbolts first mission to have sexual intercourse with one of the dock workers at Thunderbolts Mountain).

Moonstone was among four Thunderbolts members present during an attack on Thunderbolts Mountain by a renegade Skrull sleeper agent Khn'nr who had taken the form of Captain Marvel but had refused to follow his programming and had pledged to defend the human race.[17] During the battle, Khn'nr revealed that her stone was of Kree origin, and used his energy-controlling abilities to shut it down.[18] Later, Bullseye tried to kill Songbird under Osborn's orders. Songbird managed to get into the Zeus aircraft, and blew up part of the Thunderbolts' mountain headquarters. Moonstone survived because Bullseye had warned her to go intangible, and walked away from the team.[19]

Dark Avengers

Norman Osborn gave her a spot on the Dark Avengers. She was given the codename and original costume (reclaimed from Ultra Girl) of Ms. Marvel after Carol Danvers had refused to follow Osborn.[20] On the Dark Avengers' first mission, the new Ms. Marvel attacked Morgan le Fay by blasting her off her dragon, causing her to die in the present.[21]

Ms. Marvel Vol 2 39 Textless

Karla as Ms. Marvel

Osborn forced all of the Dark Avengers to undergo Psych Evaluations. After going through some of Karla's memories psychically, Dr. Gerald Wright discovered the memories of her mother's death were locked behind a "Hulk shaped door". He had come to kill the Dark Avengers because they were all made up of criminals, and he made Karla begin choke herself to death. As Karla was choking herself, she tricked him by getting him to go back into her head where she revealed she had killed her mother and hated being seen as a criminal and a failure. After Karla broke free, she asked him if he was prepared to do what she did and shot his right arm off and possibly choked him to death.[22]

After being told by Norman Osborn to find A.I.M., Karla sorted through the original Ms. Marvel's A.I.M. leads and took out an A.I.M. cell in Atlanta, Georgia. There she found baby M.O.D.O.C.'s, enhanced to warp reality. They communicated with her telepathically, telling her that they need Ms. Marvel to save them. It was unclear if they are controlling her, or if she genuinely cared about them, but Karla took them back to her room in the Avengers Tower for safe keeping. Almost immediately her room was blown apart by a strange yellow being.[23] With the aid of Venom, Noh-Varr and Iron Patriot, Karla managed to defeat the mysterious being and after a meeting with the Dark Avengers, the babies were moved to Thunderbolt's Mountain where they were stolen by Deadpool on behalf of A.I.M.[24]

Later while flying through the city, Karla came across a green version of Ms. Marvel's lightning bolt on the side of a building. Karla went back to the Avengers Tower where Osborn informed her Deadpool stole the baby M.O.D.O.C.s. Karla confronted him in Los Angeles. After defeating him, Karla came across the New Avengers and four of the mysterious beings, each one a different color, in an underground A.I.M. base. Trying to save the babies, Karla was too late to reach them as Spider-Man hooked them up to a machine. The four mysterious beings then merged and reform Carol Danvers, the original Ms. Marvel.[25] Refusing to let her title be taken away, Karla attempted to pound Danvers, but strangely, no matter what she hit her with, Danvers survived each and every blow.[26] Eventually, it was discovered that Danvers had a counterpart named Catherine Donovan, who, in close proximity, allowed Danvers to be invulnerable.

It is shown that, at some point, Karla start to feel very attracted to Daken. It didn't take long to the two start flirting among themselves and something more sparked in Karla. As a M.D. in psychiatry, Karla start to get fascinated with the mysterious, brilliant and terrible personality of Daken and how she can't predict what he gonna do next [27]. Karla demonstrated romantic feelings for Daken, but after a conversation with the mutant, Sofen realize that Daken is a liar and their relationship and the relation of Daken with the Dark Avengers was nothing but a way Daken used to have fun and achieve his goals. Still interested in Daken but disillusioned, the intimacy of the two turned cold at this point.

Karla was sent out by Osborn to help quell the riots in San Francisco along with the other Dark Avengers and H.A.M.M.E.R. Outside the Castro Theatre, she took out Nekra and Frenzy much to the surprise of Karma, Armor, and Bling.[28] Later she came into conflict with Rogue, accusing her of attacking an unconscious H.A.M.M.E.R. agent and viciously attacked her, though Rogue managed to trick her and escape.[29]

Siege

Prior to the Siege of Asgard; Moonstone was flirting with Bullseye.[30] Karla is caught having sex with Bullseye in the Avengers Tower meeting room in front of H.A.M.M.E.R agents as Victoria Hand and Norman Osborn watch on a security camera. This act was perceived as an act of rebellion from Karla against Norman Osborn's rule over the Dark Avengers. Norman sends Victoria Hand to deal with the situation. Hand confronted Moonstone and Bullseye with a group of H.A.M.M.E.R agents. Moonstone disobeyed Hand's orders, which prompts Hand to take out an alien weapon to shoot Moonstone, knocking her unconscious.[31] Moonstone was later approached by Venom who told Karla that he had been waking up 'sticky' after dreams and was wondering if she could help him. At first she looks disgusted at Mac Gargan's attempts to approach her. While this is happening, Daken walked up to her and called her 'sweetheart'. Karla wrapped her arm around Venom's arm and spurns Daken in the process.[32]

During the Siege of Asgard, Moonstone was seen helping Osborn defeat Thor.[33] She was seen being chased away by Maria Hill, turning intangible to avoid the shots fired at her. Moonstone was one of the on-lookers when Sentry tore Ares in half.[34] She was standing beside Norman Osborn when the New Avengers, Young Avengers, and Nick Fury led by Steve Rogers arrived to assist the Asgardians. Captain America hit Osborn with his shield as Karla retreated, prompting her to say "Well, I sure as @#$% saw this coming!" as she engaged in personal combat with Ms. Marvel (Carol Danvers). Karla won the exchange when Osborn interfered with the fight by blasting Ms. Marvel with an energy beam. When Osborn reverted back to his Green Goblin persona after being defeated by Iron Man and Captain America, Karla and Bullseye are seen in the distance. Both of them come to the realization that it would be a good time to leave the battle.[35]

Moonstone, along with the other members of the Dark Avengers, was arrested by the Avengers. After Captain America does away with Norman Osborn, Moonstone and Bullseye took the opportunity to attempt an escape. Carol Danvers gave chase to Moonstone, only to have Karla fire on her with an energy blast. When it seemed she had escaped, Iron Man appeared and punched her, knocking her out. At the same time, Bullseye was struck down by Luke Cage, sending the two villains falling unconscious to the ground, thus ending Moonstone's career as an "Avenger."

Karla Sofen (Earth-616) Thunderbolts Vol 1 163

Heroic Age

Imprisoned on the superhuman prison known as the Raft, Moonstone was one of the initial recruits selected for a new Thunderbolts program led by Luke Cage.[36] Man-Thing took a liking to her.[37]

She escaped together with several other inmates who were members of the Thunderbolts. Due to a failure of the teleportation technology of their tower (caused by Man-Thing), the tower began to move in time as well as in space. They ended up in World War II teaming up with the Invaders to battle the Nazis[38][39] They next ended up in Victorian London.[40] They went even further back in time ending up in King Arthur's court in Camelot.[41]

They eventually bounced back to the time of the original Zemo lead Thunderbolts team.[42] The Fixer caused a collapse in reality after killing his younger self, which forced him to assume his younger self's place. She returned to the future with the rest of the Thunderbolts.[43]

Dark Earth

Moonstone and the Dark Avengers, which had temporarily replaced the Thunderbolts during their time-travelling adventure, were later loaded onto a transport ship, escorted by John Walker and Skaar to be taken to federal prison. When an explosion hit their ship, Man-Thing panicked and opened a wormhole. They found themselves stranded in an alternate Earth. In this world, all the major superheroes had become warlords, fighting over a New York City divided into factions.[44]

Karla Sofen (Earth-616) 003

Moonstone as Captain Marvel

Moonstone and Skaar were captured and enslaved by Doctor Strange, with Karla being given the appearance of Carol Danvers once again, albeit in her Captain Marvel identity this time, to attack The Thing's forces as the recently-deceased Carol Danvers of this world, who had been a member of Iron Man's forces. Strange took direct control of Moonstone's body to attack and provoke The Thing's army, tricking him into attacking Iron Man's forces in retaliation and break a truce.[4] Moonstone then confronted Skaar, who was being controlled by Strange to attack Iron Man's forces on behalf of The Thing's.[45]

The Thing's forces brought Moonstone to his base, to use her as a gladiator against his monstrous creatures. After defeating most of his army, The Thing had Moonstone desintegrated.[46] However, Karla survived due to her phasing abilities, which had kicked back in after the nanites surpressing it were neutralized as a secondary effect of Strange's magic. Moonstone also discovered Strange's slave spell was weakened when she was intangible, and used this to her advantage to go back to Iron Man's territory to rescue the Dark Avengers, starting with Ragnarok.

Meanwhile, Doctor Strange had been killed by Ai Apaec, completely freeing both Skaar and Moonstone from his control.[47] The Dark Avengers regrouped and learned that the world they ended up in was created as a consequence of A.I.M.'s temporal manipulations, a pocket universe that was about to collapse due to the presence of the Dark Avengers from the real timeline. The Dark Avengers attacked the A.I.M. outpost monitoring the pocket universe, and used their portal to return to the real world. Under the influence of Toxie Doxie, John Walker refused to bring the Dark Avengers to federal custody as it was originally planned, and decided to keep the Dark Avengers together as a team.[48]

Pleasant Hill

At some point in time, Moonstone was captured by S.H.I.E.L.D. and incarcerated at Pleasant Hill, their newest super-prison where its inmates had their appearances and memories tampered with by a sentient Cosmic Cube named Kobik, so they could be turned into model citizens.

When the Fixer freed himself from Kobik's control and did the same to Baron Zemo, Zemo began to amass an army of villains to have revenge on S.H.I.E.L.D., one of the initial recruits was Moonstone. After recruiting a handful of villains, Zemo unleashed a coordinated assault on Pleasant Hill, spiralling the town into chaos.[49]

Moonstone remained as one of Zemo's closest allies during the conflict, and remained close to him until the Avengers were finally able to round up the escapees.[50]

Winter Soldier's Thunderbolts

After escaping Pleasant Hill, Moonstone joined Winter Soldier's new Thunderbolts team alongside Atlas, Mach-X, Fixer, and Kobik. The team continued Nick Fury's Man on the Wall mission in a team format. When on a mission to investigate alien pods in Georgia, Moonstone questioned and challenged Winter Soldier's authority by saying that anyone with her moonstone and powers should be in charge of the team.[51]

Power Grid [53]
Intelligence
Strength*
Speed*
 3
Durability*
 3
Energy Projection*
Fighting Skills
 3
* Higher ratings when in possession of two Moongems

Powers

Karla's powers are the result of her fusion with a gravity stone designed by the alien Kree. After being absorbed into her body, the stone took on the form of energy that permeates her nervous system. Karla once acquired a second gravity stone, increasing her powers to new limits. However, she currently only possesses one stone and her abilities have reverted to their old levels. If the stone is removed from her body, Karla will die in 72 hours without its support.

  • Superhuman Strength: Karla possesses superhuman strength sufficient enough to lift around 10 tons.
  • Superhuman Speed: Karla is capable of running and moving at speeds that are beyond the natural physical limits of the finest human athlete.
  • Superhuman Stamina: Karla's musculature produces considerably less fatigue toxins during physical activity than the musculature of an ordinary human. She can physically exert herself at peak capacity for about 24 hours before fatigue begins to impair her.
  • Superhuman Durability: Karla's bodily tissues are tougher and more resistant to certain forms of physical injury than those of a normal human. She is able to withstand great impact forces, such as being repeatedly struck with superhuman force, powerful energy blasts or falls from great heights, that would severely injure or kill an ordinary human though she would suffer little to no injury herself. However, she is as vulnerable to conventional ballistic and bladed weaponry as any ordinary human.
  • Superhuman Agility: Karla'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: Her reflexes are heightened in a similar manner and are superior to those of the finest human athlete.
  • Flight: Karla could also allow the Earth's gravitational pull to propel her through the air at high speeds. To the casual viewer this would make her appear to disappear or teleport.
  • Minor Molecular Control: She can instantaneously change into/alter her costume.
  • Intangibility: She can make herself and other persons intangible by reducing her or the person's body's specific gravity.
  • Photokinesis: Karla possesses the ability to manipulate light to a limited degree. She can generate a blinding luminescence from every inch of her body or generate blasts of concentrated photons from her fists that are powerful enough to blow a hole in a steel plate.

Abilities

Expert Psychologist: Sofen is a trained psychiatrist.

Expert Hypnotist: She is particularly skilled in using hypnosis. Like her predecessor, Doctor Faustus, Moonstone has perfect pitch and modulation in her voice, and was even able to use these talents to cause General Thaddeus "Thunderbolt" Ross to suffer a complete nervous breakdown.

Strength level

Class 10. Karla can lift around 10 tons.



  • The exact nature of how Karla Sofen acquired the moonstone gem was explained in greater detail in the letters column from Incredible Hulk #235.
  • While being part of H.A.M.M.E.R., she was granted Security Clearance Level 5.[33]
  • Karla is allergic to peanuts.[36]

Discover and Discuss

Footnotes

  1. Incredible Hulk #449
  2. Thunderbolts #15
  3. Avengers: The Initiative #25
  4. 4.0 4.1 Dark Avengers #185
  5. Thunderbolts Vol 3 #3
  6. Avengers: The Initiative #26
  7. Thunderbolts #25
  8. Thunderbolts #-1
  9. Captain America #192
  10. Incredible Hulk #229
  11. 11.0 11.1 Incredible Hulk #228-229
  12. 12.0 12.1 Avengers #222
  13. Avengers #236-237
  14. Dazzler #32
  15. Avengers #273
  16. Avengers #277
  17. Secret Invasion #1
  18. Thunderbolts #122
  19. Thunderbolts #127
  20. Dark Avengers #1
  21. Dark Avengers #4
  22. Ms. Marvel Vol 2 #38
  23. Ms. Marvel Vol 2 #39
  24. Ms. Marvel Vol 2 #40
  25. Ms. Marvel Vol 2 #41
  26. Ms. Marvel Vol 2 #42
  27. Dark Wolverine #81
  28. Dark Avengers / Uncanny X-Men: Utopia #1
  29. X-Men: Legacy #226
  30. Dark Avengers #10
  31. Dark Avengers #14
  32. Dark Wolverine #15
  33. 33.0 33.1 Siege #1
  34. Siege #2
  35. Siege #3
  36. 36.0 36.1 Thunderbolts #144
  37. Thunderbolts #145
  38. Thunderbolts #163.1
  39. Thunderbolts #163#165
  40. Thunderbolts #166#168
  41. Thunderbolts #169
  42. Thunderbolts #170#172
  43. Thunderbolts #173#174
  44. Dark Avengers #184
  45. Dark Avengers #186
  46. Dark Avengers #187
  47. Dark Avengers #189
  48. Dark Avengers #190
  49. Avengers Standoff: Assault On Pleasant Hill Alpha #1
  50. Avengers Standoff: Assault On Pleasant Hill Omega #1
  51. Thunderbolts Vol 3 #1
  52. Official Handbook of the Marvel Universe Vol 4 #9
  53. Official Handbook of the Marvel Universe A-Z hardcover Vol. 7



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