The 6 Most Interesting Dupes of Jamie Madrox The Multiple Man
The day has finally arrived that we fans of Jamie Madrox the Multiple Man have long been waiting for! He’s back in regular, ongoing comics! This day marks the first issue of the new X-Corp series by Tini Howard and Alberto Foche, a series I have long been anticipating as Multiple Man’s proper debut in the Dawn of X-era of X-Men comics!
Multiple Man is my all-time favorite comic book character. And it has been a long many years since he appeared regularly in ongoing comics — since the end of Peter David’s X-Factor in September 2013, in fact. And then he’s been dead for a good long while. But Dawn of X and the Krakoa-era are all about resurrection! Madrox has made multiple appearances here and there over the past two or so years, but X-Corp is now his time to shine! And I’m going to honor his return with a List of Six dedicated to Multiple Man!
Specifically, we’re going to look at some of the more interesting dupes to ever pop out of Jamie Madrox the Multiple Man! Join me after the jump!
First, a quick explanation for anyone unfamiliar with Jamie Madrox the Multiple Man and how his powers work. Madrox is a mutant capable of creating duplicates or clones of himself. Each of these dupes is a fully autonomous individual capable of thought and feelings. Usually, Madrox calls upon some dupes to help out with a specific situation. But throughout his comic book history, sometimes those dupes go off on their own to do their own thing.
This list is all about the most interesting dupes who went off to do their own thing.
6. The one who learned the truth
One really fun twist to Jamie Madrox over the years was the idea that he would absorb the memories and skills that any of his duplicates acquired while off doing their own thing. So one day, he sent a bunch of dupes out into the world to pursue different careers, like doctor, lawyer, escape artist and a lot else. These dupes were then expected to return eventually so that Madrox Prime could absorb all of the accumulated knowledge and skills. The dupe we’re talking about here is the one who went to become the world’s greatest detective…and he succeeded! The problem is that he detected too much about too many things, and he did not want Madrox Prime to get that knowledge.
Most dangerous of all, this dupe claimed he had learned the truth about the nature of Madrox’s powers, a truth that writer Peter David only ever hinted at in the series. What was this truth? The dupe took that information to his grave, as he went on an intentional suicide mission to take out a dirty police captain and got blown away in the process. But still, he was able to learn the mysterious truth that eludes readers to this day!
5. The famously dead one
Multiple Man and his dupes have died a lot of times in comics. So much so, I’m planning to do a List of Six for his deaths once there are six significant enough ones. But most famously, Madrox Prime was “killed” in the landmark X-Factor #100 issue back in 1994. It was a big, huge death at the time and was really disappointing to a young, comic loving Sean. I’d only just learned of Multiple Man and he was already dead! In this story, he died of the Legacy Virus, which had been ravaging mutants in X-Men comics for years at that point. His death had been building for some time.
We would later learn that it was only a duplicate who had died and that Madrox Prime had survived…but the death of the duplicate was so dramatic that Madrox Prime suffered amnesia and that’s why he wasn’t in the series for a while. So like all good comic book characters who die, he came back eventually.
4. The Uncanny X-Man
Equally famously, Multiple Man was never a member of the X-Men. He declined membership on the actual team and was mostly a part of one of the spin-off teams, X-Factor. He’s famously a member of X-Factor. But there was one period of time where a duplicate of Multiple Man did join the X-Men! After Madrox Prime was killed, Marvel eventually put out a short mini-series about a surviving duplicate. This has been the only time there’s even been a comic titled “Multiple Man”. This duplicate is pretty important…but he was dead by the end of the mini-series, so he didn’t make the list. It’s a whole time travel story with dozens of different dupes traveling through different time periods and alternate realities. It’s a whole thing.
Anyway, while that surviving dupe died, one of his dupes survived the series and was the only Jamie Madrox left standing. He snagged a special serum that Beast made to grant him the mantle of Madrox Prime. And this dupe made his next appearance in the Uncanny X-Men comic from 2019…the one that was just spinning its wheels while Marvel and Jonathan Hickman prepared the Dawn of X relaunch. In that story, most of the X-Men and other mutants were dead, and Jamie joined Cyclops, Wolverine and a couple other stragglers to fight Dark Beast and some other X-villains. I’m fairly certain that story has already been forgotten by comic book fans. But for that brief moment, a duplicate of Multiple Man was a member of the Uncanny X-Men.
3. The priest
Father John Maddox is another duplicate sent out into the world to follow a new path, like the detective above. Maddox became a priest and was so taken by his new life that he never went back to Madrox Prime. He started a new life in Vermont as the pastor of a small church. He had a wife, a son and a very happy little life. When Madrox Prime went to collect him, the pair had a decent heart-to-heart and Jamie decided that letting the man live his life was worth that piece of his soul. It was a very nice story.
Maddox showed up a couple more times over the years, barely avoiding superhero trouble and offering a kind ear or a word of wisdom to Madrox and his friends.
2. The evil time traveler
Cortex is a wild one. After most of the mutants on planet Earth lost their powers on M-Day, the X-Men started running experiments to figure out how to fix it. Forge looked into the future and found only two potential timelines that contained mutants. So the X-Men sent two duplicates into those futures to map the area and then die, allowing their memories to be absorbed by Madrox Prime through the time stream. One of those duplicates completed his job, the other was kidnapped by some bad guys, stuffed full of technology and turned into a bad guy himself. He took the name Cortex and he came back to the present to mess around with the real Jamie Madrox and his friends. He had mind-control powers, and he was pulling a Terminator: kill key people in the present to prevent a rebel uprising in the future. It was a whole story. Real bad dude. And, technically speaking, he survived his first encounter with the team so he could theoretically come back some day!
1 The Fallen Angel
This character is real neat. And he’s the first most interesting dupe I’d ever met back when Young Sean started reading comics, I just had no idea at the time. It involves multiple years, multiple different comics and some retcons. So once upon a time, after his initial debut fighting the Fantastic Four (long story), Jamie Madrox the Multiple Men spent his time hanging out with Moira McTaggert on Muir Island. He’d turned down membership in the X-Men by this point. Then along came a little 8-issue comic called Fallen Angels, in which Multiple Man joined Siryn, Sunspot, Warlock, Ariel, the Vanisher and some sentient lobsters in a pretty wacky, late-80s adventure. And during the story, the writers really tapped into what makes Multiple Man special, with a lot of focus on the idea of dupes as their own thinking and feeling individuals. He ended the series going back to Muir Island.
Or did he? Next thing you know, it’s being retconned that the Madrox who joined the Fallen Angels was a dupe himself! He’d grown bored of being stuck on Muir Island and snuck away with Siryn and Moira when they went to help the X-Men, leaving Madrox Prime alone at Muir. When Fallen Angels ended, this dupe snuck away again and went on living his life. He returned a few years later after hearing that Madrox Prime had joined X-Factor. He showed up at the team announcement press conference and claimed that he was the real Madrox and the one who’d joined X-Factor was a dupe!
The two of them got into a big fight that spread all across Washington DC. When X-Factor got them both under control, they couldn’t tell which one was telling the truth since Madrox Prime was unaware that a dupe had been on the loose for so long. This was all a plot by Mister Sinister, and he was using the dupe to foil X-Factor’s plans. He managed to trick the team into thinking the dupe was the real Jamie and he absorbed Madrox…only for Madrox to somehow use his powers to absorb the dupe from the inside out! The real Jamie Madrox, Multiple Man, stood tall and looked cool doing it!
And those are some of the most interesting dupes of Jamie Madrox! We haven’t even talked about Matt Rocks! He deserves an entire article, especially since I think he’s coming back in X-Corp! I’ll let you know after reading the first issue this week!