Real Name: Michael Twoyoungmen
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Shaman is a magic-wielder who carries a medicine bag which contains a pocket dimension known as the Void. He can summon all manner of mystical objects and potions from the bag. See hammerspace.
Following his vision quest, Shaman gained the power to beseech spirits to fulfill his requests. He could not force the spirits to obey. In this incarnation, Shaman carried a "spirit staff," which would glow when he summoned the spirits. He wore an "eagle helm," which could transform into an eagle which served as his familiar spirit.
Shaman could levitate (but not fly) by manipulating ambient mystical energy.
When Shaman took on the role of Talisman, he had the power to command natural spirits to do his will. He could manipulate vast mystical energy for a wide variety of effects. He has since relinquished these powers.
Michael Twoyoungmen is a member of Canada's First Nations (specifically the Sarcee) and is from Calgary, Alberta. The grandson of the tribal shaman, Twoyoungmen did not himself believe in magic. He became a physician and surgeon. He married Kathryn and together they had a daughter, Elizabeth.
Twoyoungmen's grandfather, elderly and near death, asked him to become his mystical apprentice. Twoyoungmen, not believing in magic, refused. At around the same time, Kathryn Twoyoungmen became terminally ill. Twoyoungmen sought desperately for a cure but, despite promising Elizabeth he would find one, Kathryn died. His failure to save Kathryn kindled a deep-seated resentment and anger in Elizabeth. Seemingly coincidentally, his grandfather died the same day.
Grief-stricken, Twoyoungmen secluded himself in a cabin in Banff National Park, leaving Elizabeth to be raised by family friends the McNeils (whose daughter Heather would one day become Alpha Flight leader Vindicator). There, Twoyoungmen received the skull of his grandfather and experienced a vision of the man. Twoyoungmen studied Sarcee magic, eventually becoming strong enough in his belief to draw mystical items from his enchanted medicine bag at will. He adopted the title and garb of Shaman.
Several years later, Shaman assisted in the birth of Snowbird, the product of a mystical union between a human and the goddess Nelvanna. Shaman cast spells to bind Snowbird to the Earthly realm. He raised her and she aged rapidly, stabilizing several weeks later at a physical age in her 20s. Seeking superhuman agents to join Alpha Flight, Heather and her husband James Hudson (aka Alpha Flight organizer Guardian) visited Shaman and recruited both him and Snowbird.
A few years after Shaman joined Alpha Flight, his daughter Elizabeth discovered a skull at an archeological site and experienced a vision of Ranaq the Devourer, one of the Great Beasts. She summoned her father, whom she knew was Shaman despite a spell he had cast to conceal his identity, to examine the skull. The two then met Lucas Strang and his great-granddaughter Emily. Emily was possessed by Ranaq and he attempted to destroy Elizabeth, but instead activated her latent mystical powers, allowing her to defeat him. Shaman had Elizabeth reach into his medicine bag and withdraw the "circlet of enchantment," a mystical coronet which she donned to become Talisman, a prophesied person of great mystical power. Shaman did not tell Talisman that the circlet, once donned, could not be removed without causing her intense agony. Shortly thereafter, Talisman was trapped in the pocket dimension contained within Shaman's medicine bag despite Shaman's promise he would save her. Although she was rescued by the Beyonder, this latest failed promise turned her resentment of Shaman into hatred.
Shaman's failure to save his daughter led to a crisis of faith and Shaman was unable to draw mystical items from his medicine bag. Shaman embarked on a vision quest and learned anew the secrets of mysticism from the spirit of his grandfather. Shaman gained the power to beseech nature spirits for aid, although he could not command them. He also received a staff and a helmet which was also his familiar spirit.
Snowbird was now about to give birth to her first child and the birth needed to happen at a "place of power." Shaman beseeched the spirits to lead him to such a place. However, Talisman, corrupted by her power and fueled by her rage, compelled the spirits to lead Shaman and Alpha Flight to a place of evil. Snowbird's child was possessed by the spirit of a sailor who had lain under the permafrost for over a century. Calling himself Pestilence, he battled Alpha Flight. Talisman planned to allow Pestilence to defeat Alpha Flight and then step in to defeat him, humilating her father. However, Talisman was unable to defeat Pestilence and he tore the circlet of enchantment from her brow. Shaman, believing it was the only way to save Alpha Flight, donned the circlet and took on the mantle and powers of Talisman. Shaman, who grew cold and distant as Talisman just as Elizabeth had, eventually relinquished the circlet to Elizabeth and took up his original medicine bag and powers again. He continued to work with Alpha Flight again under the name Shaman.
Shaman was supposedly killed by The Collective, a vastly powerful mutant, in the New Avengers comic book.
First Appearance: Uncanny X-Men (1963) #120
Talisman (Marvel)(03 - Michael Twoyoungmen)
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All-New Official Handbook of the Marvel Universe A to Z: Update (2007)
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