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The Religious Affiliation of Comic Book Character
The Magdalena

From: David Wade, "Culture Watch: Holy Warrior Nuns, Batman! Comic books take on the world of faith and spirituality", published in Sojourner Magazine, July 2004 (http://www.sojo.net/index.cfm?action=magazine.article&issue=soj0407&article=040738; viewed 6 June 2006):

A darker manifestation of this idea is The Magdalena. Image Comics created a historical story that dated from the crucifixion when Mary Magdalene began a secret lineage of women warriors who fought against the enemies of the Lord while struggling with authorities within the church to control and manipulate members of their order.

From: "The Magdalena" page on Wikipedia website (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Magdalena; viewed 10 January 2006):

The Magdalena is a comic book heroine published by Top Cow Productions. She does not have her own on-going series but has had two limited series comics and has been featured in comics with The Darkness, Witchblade, Tomb Raider, The Angelus and Vampirella.

Background
The story goes that after the crucifixion and resurrection of Christ, Mary Magdalen -- reputed prostitute by the Bible, in reality love and wife of Jesus -- gave birth to a daughter, Sarah. From this child is descended the holy lineage of the Magdalena, a royal bloodline that passes on from mother to daughter great power and great honor.

The Magdalena have the ability to see in the hearts of men, to show them the error of their ways and to redeam their sins. They are always one in a generation, alone to stand and take arms against the evils of the world and by opposing end them. Apart from the powers she is born with, the Magdalena wields the Spear of Destiny, the javelin that pierced the side of Christ, as a holy and formidable weapon against the twisted and the evil.

Since medieval times, the Catholic Church has been the Magdalena's employer. They raise her as a child and train her until she is ready to take hold of her destiny. It is the Inquisition, a secret but powerful council of cardinals, that selects the missions the Magdalena is sent on.

We have encountered three Magdalena in the Top Cow universe.

Sister Rosalia When we meet Rosalia she is 33 years old. Raped as a teenager she gave birth to a daughter who we can only assume was taken from her and brought up in a convent somewhere. She is sent to investigate what might be vampire killings in France. She finds the vampires and discovers they are humans infected with a virus and sees that they are not evil. She is killed by the soldiers of the Inquisition, the Garduna, for trying to prevent them from slaughtering the 'vampires'. Chronologically Rosalia is the first Magdalena we encounter, although the Blood Divine mini series (#1 - 3) which she stars in is the Magdalena's second printed appearance.

Sister Mariella, Daughter of Rosalia, she makes the first printed appearance of the Magdalena in The Darkness #15 - 18, and then appears again in Magdalena/Angelus #1/2. Mariella must be in her later teens/early twenties when she is called as the next Magdalena. She is sent to kill the Darkness with the Spear of Destiny but unbeknown to her she is not yet fully trained and even when the Sisters of the Order of Magdalene perform the ritual which gives her the ability to reveal a person's sins, she is still defeated by Jackie Estacado and left for dead. Having recovered from her run in with Jackie the Magdalena receives word of where the Spear of Destiny is and goes to retrieve it, where she meets the Angelus and Appolonia Francetti, and is again left for dead. It is not clear what has actually happened to her as it clearly states she's not dead after her appearance in Magdalena/Angelus #1/2, but a new Magdalena has been called so she perhaps died on another mission which we have not heard about.

Having been sent on two very dangerous missions, once by Cardinal Innocent and once by anonymous letter, it is clearly possible that someone within the church, probably Cardinal Innocent, wants an end to the Magdalena and her line because of her true origin.

Patience. We have no information as to her lineage from the previous Magdalenas, she seems too old to be Mariella's daughter. It is also not clear whether Patience is actually a nun. She receives her calling from Kristof, her mentor, while ending a fugue through New York City with a newfound friend, a homeless girl called Rowan Barry. These events, along with Rowan's abduction, lead the young Patience to her destiny. But a highly evil force has awakened in our world and only the Magdalena can stand up to it.

[Extensive additional information is on this page, detailing each of The Magdalena's appearances.]

From: "'Hulk' Hurd Believes in the 'Magdalena' !!!", posted 25 October 2005 on "Sneak Peek TV" website (http://www.sneakpeektv.com/id357.html; viewed 10 January 2006):
Producers Scott Mitchell Rosenberg, chairman of Platinum Studios and Gale Anne "Hulk" Hurd, founder of Valhalla Motion Pictures will develop Top Cow's 'spiritually themed' comic book character "Magdalena" as a feature film.

Kevin "Alone" Taft will write the screenplay, focusing on a young woman named 'Patience' who discovers she is part of a lineage of female warriors descended from 'Mary Magdalene'.

The film's present-day action-adventure storyline is being compared to "The Da Vinci Code" by Dan Brown.

"'Magdalena' is exactly the kind of project we love," said Hurd.

"A strong female lead character, a story with rich mythology, and compelling characters ... The religious overtone adds a new dimension to the adventure story ..."

"Magdalena" the comic series has so far been translated into 26 languages for 55 countries.

"'Magdalena' is one of the most popular characters from the Top Cow library, " said Rosenberg.

Comic creator and Top Cow Productions CEO, Marc "Witchblade" Silvestri will also executive produce.

"The need for faith in any form is what 'Magdalena' is about," said Silvestri.

"Patience's journey is, ultimately, about having faith in something -- and the need to believe in something that is greater than ourselves."

Platinum Studios signed a pact with Top Cow in 2004 to develop Top Cow's comic library for film, television, and other media.

Platinum Studios and Top Cow's comic books are set up at many major studios, including "Cowboys and Aliens" at Sony, "Inferno" at Warner Brothers and "Rising Stars" at MGM.

Development of "Magdalena" will be overseen for Rosenberg and Hurd by Valhalla's Executive Vice President Gary Ventimiglia, VP of Production and Development Steve Emery, Platinum Studios' Director of Development Aaron Severson and Director of Production Jay Burns. Top Cow Productions' President Matt Hawkins will co-produce.

Discussion

From: "Religion/Spirituality" discussion page, started 29 November 2003, on ComixFan.com website (http://www.comixfan.com/xfan/forums/archive/index.php/t-24121.html; viewed 10 January 2006):
P_Mac
Feb 5, 2004, 01:54 pm
Let me ask a dumb question that may raise much ire but has there been any good, by good I mean quality, comics with anything at all Christian in them? Or maybe even a character in a book... I have seen a few but the art was rough and the plot little more than okay. If so just let me know.
omegastorm
Feb 5, 2004, 02:08 pm
If that is what you think will raise ire (I dont believe I wrote) in this thread then feel free to ask them. Christians in comics, the Magdalena, Uncanny X-men (Nightcrawler), the Avengers (a latin woman was Christian in it, forgot her name though), then there was the mediocre Archangels series. More can answer as I think those are the only ones off of the top of my head that I can remember completely.

From: "Catholic Clix - Comic info needed!" forum discussion started 3 May 2003 on HCRealms website (http://www.hcrealms.com/forum/archive/index.php/t-40338.html; viewed 24 May 2007):

thornnspear
05/03/2003, 21:04

Ok, so in recent films it's been apparent that Daredevil and Nightcrawler are Catholic...

So, who else out there could be fielded in a "Catholic" Heroclix team?


heylady
08/17/2003, 01:02

I know they're not out quite yet, but give yourself a month, and you can add at least Magdalena and Witchblade out of the Indy [independent publishers Heroclix] set. I don't know much about any of the others, but Sara [Witchblade] was raised Catholic, and Patience [the Magdalena] is the warrior for the Church. ;)


SpinnerLover
08/22/2003, 15:33

Isn't Magdelena Catholic?


daedalus25
08/22/2003, 15:52

Magdalena is not only Catholic, but she's a nun.


thornnspear
08/23/2003, 00:01

Wow! I started this thread so long ago - surprised its still kicking (and hasn't fallen apart either)

Few things though:

Magdelena - Wow, cool. A Sister of Battle for Clix! (wink wink for WH 40k players...)

From: "The religion of comic book characters" forum discussion, started 3 December 2006 on RPG.net website (http://forum.rpg.net/showthread.php?t=299781&page=2; viewed 25 April 2007):

12-04-2006, 12:44 AM
Peter Svensson

Originally Posted by admiralducksauce: Did Marvel (or whoever) ever explain why the walking gods, blatant proof of divine existence, still get marginalized compared to the prominent religions of our world?

Most people in the Marvel Universe believe that Thor is just some superpowered guy pretending to be the Thor of Norse Myth. After all, the Hulk is really strong and he's not a god. Storm can control the weather and she's just a mutant. Just because Thor claims to be a god doesn't mean that it's true...

Now, the DC Universe is another story. Yes, Wonder Woman is empowered by the Greek Gods. But Angels and Demons have been seen quite often. While both DC and Marvel use the "Everything is true!" take on religion, DC has made more use of it, considering that the Spectre has been around for decades. It's hard to say "Wonder Woman's cool, I'll worship Hera!" when you've got just as much proof that the Old Testament God is real.


[http://forum.rpg.net/showthread.php?t=299781&page=5]

2-04-2006, 09:34 PM
Arbane the Terrible

Quote: Originally Posted by Thranduil: While I know of the Greek/Norse/other pantheon gods empowering people in comic universes, I haven't heard of people being exalted by the biblical god to superhero-ness (except Catholics, apparently ) . Does this happen in any mainstream comics?

The only well-known character I can think of like that would be The Spectre.

In Astro City, there's a team called "The Crossbreed", who believe their powers are a gift from God. (Refreshing, in that they're devoutly religious AND unquestionably good guys. As much as I dislike organized religion, I will confess the "Evil Religious Nuts" trope has a bit overused since "God Loves, Man Kills".)

Thor once fought a guy who called himself The Crusader, but I dunno what happened to him after he lost.


[http://forum.rpg.net/showthread.php?t=299781&page=6]

12-04-2006, 11:09 PM
Manitou

Zuriel is one of those listed as Angels in the site, and he was created by God.

Magdalena: Nuns descended from Jesus and Mary.

From: "Gods and Champions" forum discussion, started 11 September 2004 on "HERO Games" website (http://www.herogames.com/forums/archive/index.php/t-21728.html; viewed 12 July 2007):

bblackmoor
Sep 14th, '04, 09:08 AM

While I've never read the series, is this the "Warrior Nun" where she wears a habit that reveals cleavage and shows off pretty much all of her legs?

I've never quite understood the nun fetish thing, but I have to admit I liked Areala's costume.

Magdalena's too, actually. I guess it's the whole hood, cape, and skin thing they have going on.


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