Man-Wolf is the first entry into the Midnight Sons crossover event series.
We begin with John Jameson. In this series we follow him going to space, becoming the hero Colonel Jupiter back on Earth, and then slowly being torn apart by his villainous alternate personality, Man-Wolf, as he starts to lose control of his life. A psychological thriller about John's descent into darkness follows. This season will introduce Morbius as a corrupting and manipulative influence, and explore the reason behind John's transformation via the mysterious and fantastical planet of Fortisque. Also featuring: J. Jonah Jameson & the Daily Bugle, Agent Martin Reyna, Simon Stroud, Stephen Beckley, and Jennifer Walters.
After exploring his life a little bit and getting to know our character, John is sent on a fairly routine mission to near-space, on a small craft, the Icarus One, with a science and research crew, consisting of Catherine Mora, Jon Mora, Peter Boyer, Ted Munn, Ann Beckley, and Stephen Beckley.
Beckley and Jameson are out on spacewalk, when a proximity alarm begins to go off. A previously undocumented, untracked comet, bright red in colour breaches their space. Beckley is disintegrated by the tail of the comet as comet debris is flying everywhere. Part of the comet strikes the spacecraft, splitting it in half, before crashing to the Moon. Jameson himself is sent flying, after his tether snaps from the impact, crashing to the moon’s surface as well, not far from the red comet.
Jameson blinks in and out of consciousness, before coming across a glowing redstone. He instinctively grabs it and before passing out.
Jameson wakes up on Earth. The rescue crew managed to get him right before his life support ran out. The comet split the craft in half and knocked out heat shield on ship; Ann died, Jon, Peter, and Tedd were tossed into space with half the ship and presumed dead, but Catherine survived, though she is in a coma, with no signs of waking. Beckley is officially listed as KIA, disintegrated with no trace remaining. Doctors are tracking mysterious alien spores in each of Jameson and Mora’s systems. One of his doctors includes Morbius.
John heals up rather quickly, but tests reveal he has developed super strength, speed, etc.
Despite the accident, all is going well for John: hero, health, relationship. Already semi-famous as NASA's youngest (and charming) astronaut before the accident, the public loves him for being a survivor, and even more as a new hero.
One night however, John has a nightmare where he recounts his crash, grabbing the red stone, but in this dream, instead of blacking out, he sees the redstone absorb through his suit into his hand. He wakes up and looks at his hand, to see the stone unabsorb out it, into his open palm.
After initially freaking out, John grows a strange attraction to the stone; it makes him even stronger. But a few mornings later, he wakes up not remembering anything from the night before; complete black out, but with a sense of dread and signs of distress around him.
We begin to witness a slow descent into madness as John discovers that the nights when he loses his memories, he is secretly turning into a nightmarish and violent werewolf form, ‘Man-Wolf’. John has begun going on rampages in the night, attacking innocents. On top of this brutal transformation, John's daily persona is getting rouger and short-tempered, and the fame is getting to his head. He slowly loses control of his life. He is getting more and more violent in his heroics, is losing more and more time to Man-Wolf at nights, and his behaviour and personality pushes Jennifer away, and she leaves him, upset with what he’s becoming.
Morbius becomes a close confidante of John’s, but little does he know, Morbius has been manipulating and further corrupting John, trying to learn more about the spores. Mistakeningly trusting him, John finally reveals to Morbius the truth about the stone and Man-Wolf. Morbius, pretending to help John, ultimately embeds the stone in John’s chest, revealing that the stone and the spores, while messing with John’s mind, have been dosing John’s blood with something he thinks can help himself, in turn revealing his own vampirism.
Morbius pushes John to maximize his new form, so that he can learn more about it, despite John’s feral behaviour attacking innocents. Morbius in fact encourages John to attack innocents, but not kill them, instead turning them into their own, feral, werewolfish forms, such that Morbius can do experiments with the spores on them (including the unfortunate Vaughn Zeldow). John has lost nearly his entire self now in Man-Wolf form, and the wake of destruction he is leaving leads to attention from law enforcement and the like – Simon Stroud and (undercover S.H.I.E.L.D. Agent) Martin Reyna begin tracking Man-Wolf to try and find out who Man-Wolf is.
Things come to a head, when John has a break in his psychosis, gaining some control back. Trying to escape Morbius he finds his way to Catherne, still in a coma at NASA.
John debates biting Mora so that she will either turn into werewolfish beast like the others, but wake up, or at least be put out of her misery. But before he can take any action Morbius shows up and John turns back into Man-Wolf and Stroud and Reyna finally catch up to him. John flees causing a path of destruction in the hospital.
Realizing what he has done to the hospital, what he was just thinking about doing to Catherine, and that none of the others are safe around him, he hijacks a small spacecraft and takes off to space.
The stone guides him back to the Moon, where he crashed before. In a moment of despair, John steps outside of his spacecraft, with no suit. Much to his dismay, Man-Wolf consumes him once more and he transforms. Here he is amazed to discover that not only can he breath and survive in the form, but he has now retained his human intelligence while in wolf form.
Shortly after, a floating, dark figure approaches him, and John hears his name spoken to him, in his head.
John recognizes the voice, as the person is revealed to be Stephen Beckley. Shocked, thinking Beckley to have been disintegrated, Beckley explains to John that he was disintegrated... and then he reintegrated.
Beckley says there is something he thinks John should know about the spores, and opens a red, shimmering portal, asking John to follow, so he can continue the story.
They enter the portal into an alien, sci-fi, sword-and-sorcery-lite land, Fortisque, and John’s wolf form reverts back to his human. Beckley leads John on a walk while he explains that for a while after the incident, he continued to disintegrate and reintegrate, and jump from place to place, haphazardly and with little control, until he found himself here. He was able to stay, and he learned the truth and learned to focus his new abilities, including teleporting to specific people, just by thinking about them.
John asks if he could teleport anywhere, why didn’t he come home. Beckley explains the first thing he did when he figured it out was to teleport to his wife, but when he teleported himself into her presence he found himself pressed up against her corpse within a buried coffin. He hasn’t returned since, with nothing left for him except pain there. Instead he’s travelled space, and learned to call this planet home.
They arrive at where Beckley wanted to take them, and Beckley introduces John to Gorjoon, his new friend who has helped him, and to the leader of the land, Arisen Tyrk. Tyrk finally explains to John what happened that day in space.
The red comet was the comet of Stargod – the former ruler who was cast out a century ago by Tyrk and descendent of Chthon – his essence trapped in the comet, sentenced to fly through space for eternity. He explains that the spores came from this land, and that it was the spores and the exposure to the radiation from the comet that transformed Beckley. Assuming John to have gone through a similar transformation, he coaxes John to reveal his transformation. With Beckley and Gorjoon assuring him its okay, John reveals the red stone in his chest and in turn, Man-Wolf.
Tyrk immediately lashes out in a fury, recognizing John as Stargod himself, the stone being the item in the comet that carried his essence. Tyrk attacks John but Beckley fights to protect him. Tyrk sends the Nilffim Riders on them and they barely escape, just in time for Gorjoon to open a portal back for John, though Beckley chooses to stay, to help return order there on Fortisque.
Back on Earth, John returns home with the ability to still control Man-Wolf and retain his intelligence while in that form.
Now knowing much more, he decides to confront Morbius, and try to right what has been done. Morbius is cooperative, even outwardly apologetic, but largely because he thinks this new information could potentially help him even more.
John finally reveals himself to Stroud and Reyna as John Jameson, the famous hero astronaut, and tries to explain everything, and that he now has it under control. Stroud does not care, and tries to attack John. Morbius, to protect John, releases Zeldow and the werewolf creations on Stroud and Reyna.
The werewolves gravely injure Stroud, but John is able to subdue the rest and save Reyna. Morbius escapes.
In the end, Reyna reveals himself to be S.H.I.E.L.D., and with John now in control, decides not to share his secret to the police/turn him in, but instead keep him as an ally. John and Jennifer reconcile, but agree it’s best to move on, as friends. The werewolf victims are brought to Ravencroft Institute and John gets a job there to help them, not only as an educated scientist and astronaut, but also secretly with his Man-Wolf identity. There he meets Dr. Ashley Kafka.
In an end stinger, John visits Mora once more, in a coma. Unexpectedly, she begins to wake up, but just as she does, John hears a voice behind him, and turns to see a second Mora standing behind him.
- In the comics (Supremeverse), Jon, Catherine, Tedd, and Peter are the crew of Icarus One and all gain powers after encountering a mysterious object on the moon. The four, as well as Zeldow all allied with Nick Fury as super-agents.
- Gorjoon is an amalgamation of Gorjoon, Garth, and Lambert from the Other Realm, who take John there to teach him about the stone, Stargod, and to defeat Arisen Tyrk, and Max, whose spaceship disintegrated Beckley, and reconstructed him, giving him his powers.
- Fortisque is an amalgamation of the Other Realm, created by Stargod and ruled by the usurper Tyrk, and the colony of the genetic specialists, the Fortisquians,