Proteus (Marvel)(02 - Kevin MacTaggert)
Real Name: Kevin MacTaggert
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Proteus has reality manipulation powers allowing him to transmute matter and bend the laws of physics according to his imagination within a certain distance. Using this power he can easily turn a building into liquid, turn a vehicle into bees that attack at his mental command, transform energy into matter, manipulate weather, or strip a person of their mutant powers. He often reverses local gravity, opens fissures in the earth, and stretches people painfully into liquid shapes (they return to normal when he no longer concentrates on manipulating their bodies). Use of this ability tends to speed up the rate at which his body will burn out. Other reality manipulators, such as Longshot may be immune to Proteus' manipulations.
Proteus can enter and completely possess another living being. Only beings with metal in their bodies appear to be immune. The bodies of most beings burn out within hours or a few days, although a few have been known to last longer. Proteus could leave a body before it is destroyed, but he usually does not. No possessed person has been shown able to resist or break free of Proteus' domination. Proteus has access to all the memories of his host while he possesses them and after he has left the body. At times Proteus has exhibited some telepathy, perfect recall, and the ability to mentally download computer information.
Proteus can become a being made of energy at will. He will also do this automatically whenever his body burns out so badly that it disintegrates. This form is more able to possess a new host and to manipulate reality. However, it is more vulnerable to the touch of metal. Contact with enough metal in this form can disrupt Proteus' energy and destroy his consciousness. It is possible for his consciousness to reform after such a disruption, but he has not shown the ability to do so without assistance. Proteus has at times exhibited the ability to transport himself interdimensionally, but it is not known whether he always could do this, or his resurrection by the Scarlet Witch enhanced his powers, or if he needed to use a connection to the Panoptichron in order to accomplish this.
Proteus is written as one of the strongest and deadliest mutants ever to appear in Marvel Comics. Despite being one of the most powerful mutants, Proteus was not fortunate enough to have a happy life. Even his conception was under unpleasant circumstances. He was the son of Moira MacTaggert and her sinister husband, Joseph MacTaggert, who forced Moira into an unhappy marriage. Kevin was conceived after his mother, Moira, was severely beaten (and, it is implied, raped) by Joseph. After this traumatic experience, Moira left Joseph. She did not notify him that she was pregnant with his child.
Moira and Kevin lived on Muir Island, off the coast of Scotland. Kevin eventually began manifesting his mutant abilities and became a danger to everyone around him. His abilities gave him an uncontrollable hunger for energy. To protect herself and others, Moira was forced to confine Kevin. To keep the truth about her son secret, she began to describe him to others only as Mutant X.
For years, Kevin remained inside his cell, until one day, after a battle between Magneto and the X-Men, Kevin was able to escape. During his escape, Kevin came into contact with Phoenix, Polaris, and Multiple Man. While he was able to defeat Polaris and Multiple Man, he barely escaped with his life when he confronted Phoenix. The only problem was, without the isosteric energy fields of his cell to sustain him, Kevin began to burn his body out. The only temporary solution he could find was to possess several human host bodies, including one of Multiple Man's duplicates.
Kevin eventually encountered the X-Men and proceeded to rename himself as Proteus, after the Greek god. Proteus eventually went to Edinburgh, to possess his father, Joseph. After possessing his father, Proteus made a last stand against the X-Men; he destroyed Joseph MacTaggert's body in battle. Before Proteus could take another host, Colossus (in his metallic form) punched Proteus in his energy form. Due to Proteus' weakness to metal, Proteus was unable to maintain his energy form. His energy was therefore dispersed across the world.
Some time after his death, Moira MacTaggert thought about cloning Kevin, but she was discouraged successfully by Sean Cassidy.
Several years later, A.I.M. attempted to recreate Proteus. The organization used a woman named Harness and her mutant son, Piecemeal, to absorb all of the dispersed energy of Proteus. As the boy went about absorbing the energy, his body grew too large for his system to handle. Eventually, what was left of Proteus' consciousness and Piecemeal merged as one being.
The combined efforts of the New Warriors, the New Mutants, the Muir Islanders, and the original X-Factor wasn't enough against this new creature. When the amalgamated being decided that it would not find happiness, it decided to disappear.
First Appearance: Uncanny X-Men (1963) #125
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View a chronological listing of this character's appearances
All-New Official Handbook of the Marvel Universe A to Z (2006)
Astonishing X-Men (2017)
Classic X-Men (1986)
#95 Marvel Encyclopedia (2014)
- 'Home, Again!, Part 1: Starting Over'
Official Handbook of the Marvel Universe A to Z (2008)
Star Trek/X-Men (1996)
The Marvel Encyclopedia (2006)
HC The Marvel X-Men Collection (1994)
- 'The Marvel Encyclopedia'
The New Warriors (1990)
The Official Handbook of the Marvel Universe: Master Edition (1990)
Uncanny X-Men (1963)
What If...? (1989)
Wolverine Saga (1989)
#2 X-Factor (1986)
- 'Book Two: The Animal Unleashed'
Annual 06 X-Force (1991)
- 'Kings of Pain Part 4: King of Pain'
X-Men Legacy (2008)
- 'Earth Give Up Your Dead: Part 1'#232
- 'Earth Give Up Your Dead: Part 2'#233
- 'Earth Give Up Your Dead Part 3 of 3'
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