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Wolverine (Joint Venture)
Wolverine-JV
Real Name James Logan
Current Alias Wolverine
Alias(es) Jim Howlett, James Yashida, "Dog", "Runt", "Furball", "Pipsqueak", "Cuisinart"
Relatives Mariko Yashida (wife), Shiro Yashida (cousin by marriage), Rei Yashida (cousin by marriage), Shingen Yashida (father-in-law, deceased), Kenichiro Harada (brother-in-law), Shinji Harada (brother-in-law), Yoshi Harada (brother-in-law), Amiko Yashida (adopted daughter)
Affiliation Clan Yashida, Alpha Flight (former), Howling Commandoes (former), Invaders (former)
Base Of Operations Yashida Castle, Agarashima, Japan
Alignment Chaotic Good
Universe Joint Venture Universe
Gender Male
Height 5'3"
Eyes Brown
Hair Black
Unusual Features Distinctive wolf's-ears hairstyle; six foot-long, retractable bone claws that protrude from the backs of his hands.
Wolverine is a mutant anti-hero, and the most popular and well-known member of the X-Men. This is the Joint Venture Universe version of the character.

History

The name 'James Logan' has appeared throughout Canadian, American, European, and Japanese history for at least 200 years, always attached to a warrior of small stature, gruff demeanor, and frightening ferocity in battle.

Accounts of Logan's involvement in history vary so wildly that there is no sure way to ascertain the truth. However, there are three points where his involvement has been conclusively proven:

  • World War II, where he represented Canada as a member of the Invaders, and later the Howling Commandoes,
  • the Cold War, where he operated largely in the island nation of Madripoor,
  • and finally, the Modern Era, where he served briefly on the Canadian superhero team Alpha Flight before resurfacing in Japan, where he helped resolve the internecine strife of Clan Yashida, one of the nation's oldest, most powerful, and most divided families.

He is considered a member of Clan Yashida by marriage, having wed the Clan leader, Mariko Yashida, after her father's death.

World War II

The first "public" record of James Logan was during World War II, when on the orders of the Canadian government, he joined the Allied powers' clandestine Black Ops team known as the Invaders. Fighting alongside such dangerous elements as the original Black Widow, the Crimson Commando, Super-Sabre, and Stonewall (Jerry Sledge, whose name would later be adopted by his grandson Fred Dukes), Logan carved a niche for himself as a feral, tenacious fighter, whose animalistic senses could detect danger almost before the Black Widow's divinatory powers could. He could heal from any wound, any poison, and the bone claws that protruded from the backs of his hands could cut through most anything, though they hardly did so cleanly.

The Invaders frequently fought alongside other heroic groups of the time, like Captain America's Sentinels of Liberty, or Sergeant Jack Fury's Howling Commandoes. One mission had Logan and Steve Rogers fighting side-by-side to rescue a girl named Natasha, supposedly the last descendant of the Romanov dynasty, from a clan of ninja known as the Hand who wanted to make her their premier assassin.

During this time, it was observed that Logan and Rogers, despite being vastly different, shared an easy, comfortable camaraderie with each other, often going on missions together when Logan was separated from the Invaders, or Steve from the Sentinels. When word reached the Invaders that Rogers and his second-in-command, James "Bucky" Barnes, were transferring from the Sentinels to the Commandoes, Logan followed suit, leaving the Invaders for the Commandoes scarcely a year after joining them. This did not sit well with Crimson Commando, the team's leader.

Logan, along with the Sentinels, the rest of the Commandoes, and his alma mater the Invaders, was present during the Battle of Roterschädel on June 12, 1945, when HYDRA's main base was captured and the Red Skull defeated, but at the cost of Captain America and Bucky's lives.

S.H.I.E.L.D. Agent For A Day

Fury and the Howling Commandoes would later go on to found SHIELD under its first Director, Peggy Carter. Logan initially signed on alongside the rest, but an unknown incident during their first mission instantly put him on bad terms with Jack and most of his teammates. He remained respectful to Peggy, but quit the Commandoes, and SHIELD, after that one incident.

Madripoor, "Patch", Victor Creed, and Sabretooth

During the Cold War, Logan operated primarily in Madripoor, operating under the pseudonym of "Patch" out of his old friend Seraph's "Princess Bar", which she left to him in her will. It was during this period that he first fmet a Xiaolin monk named Victor Creed, who Logan was astonished to discover possessed the same unique, animalistic abilities as himself. Unlike the born warrior Logan, however, Creed was largely a pacifist, having been raised and trained to prefer non-violent solutions to problems. While Logan could not see the appeal, he respected Creed's lifestyle -- until a string of bloody murders happened on the streets of Lowtown, with the victims looking like they had been mauled by a wild animal.

Enraged, Logan confronted Creed, who swore his innocence, but Logan didn't believe him, having smelled his distinct scent at the scene of each crime. The two fought, Creed losing more and more control over himself as the battle progressed...until both men were ambushed, impossibly, by a SECOND Victor Creed. This Creed dressed and behaved in a savage, barbaric manner, fully given over to his animalistic side, and referred to himself as "Sabretooth". He claimed that he, not Victor, was responsible for the murders, and that he was created by a man named "Mr. Sinister" specifically for that purpose.

It is unknown whether it was hubris that led Sabretooth to that admission, or if it were part of an elaborate mind game of his creator's -- either way, the revelation served to unite Logan and the original Victor Creed against their common foe. Sabretooth, despite possessing the edge in raw animal ferocity, was defeated by the two men's superior combat techniques and self-discipiline, seeming to drown in the river dividing Madripoor's Hightown from Lowtown. Logan and the original Victor Creed parted, perhaps not as friends, but certainly as allies.

Sabretooth was not the only enemy Logan would make in Madripoor, however. After years spent vanished from the face of the Earth, the Hand reappeared in Madripoor, targeting Logan specifically. During one such altercation, the Princess Bar was destroyed, bombed and burned to the ground, and Logan had seemingly perished along with it.

Wolverine and Alpha Flight

In truth, Logan had faked his death and escaped, returning home to Canada to live in the wild and clear his head. He stayed isolated, off the radar, for nearly another forty years.

Logan would only resurface in the 1990s, during the Mutant Boom. While many of the world's governments sought only to persecute and eradicate mutants, Canada instead sought to draft them. During his time in the Canadian Rockies, Logan met and befriended nature biologist Heather Hudson and her husband James, an inventor. It is speculated to be around this time that Logan began referring to himself by his surname, to distinguish himself from the other James, a habit he would continue up to the present day. When James learned of the Canadian mutant draft, he did not want Logan to go back into war alone, so he volunteered as well, fashioning a special battle suit that would let him fight alongside his friend.

Logan and James -- now known as Guardian -- would form the nucleus of Alpha Flight, around which all others would revolve. Sure enough, mutants signed on, like the Beaubier twins Northstar and Aurora, Mesmero, Puck, and Sasquatch. In addition, Guardian's involvement opened the door to non-mutant superhumans as well, and so the mystic Shaman and the nature spirit Snowbird were recruited. Eventually, Heather herself would join, in a battle suit just like her husband's, under the name of Vindicator.

Logan, now calling himself 'Wolverine' got along with this new team much better than he had with either the Invaders or the Commandoes. Alpha Flight became a force to be reckoned with, with Wolverine, Guardian, and Vindicator at the team's core. Vindicator secured a place as Alpha Flight's second-in-command, not because she was Guardian's wife, but because she had developed strong leadership capabilities and a keen tactical mind in her own right, and Logan did not begrudge her this.

Unfortunately, this partnershiip would end no better than his last.

Mesmero's Betrayal

Mesmero, one of Alpha Flight's founding members, was an ambitious man with few morals, but the ability to control others through hypnotic eye contact. Indeed, rumors spread that the only reason he got onto the team at all was because he hypnotized Alpha Flight's superiors in Department H into letting him join. Behind the backs of the squad, he would hypnotize its female members into sleeping with him, then forgetting they had done so. Eventually, the time came when he felt bold enough to attempt this with Vindicator.

Unbeknownst to him, Logan could often detect the aftermath of Mesmero's "conquests", and had been looking for a chance to catch him in the act and expose him. Thus, when Mesmero was most vulnerable, Logan and Guardian burst in, freeing Heather from the hypnotist's control. The three leaders of Alpha Flight fought the traitor, but Mesmero escaped, hypnotizing other members of the team into covering his flight. When it was all over, Alpha Flight was free of Mesmero's control, but many of its members were injured and Shaman was dead, stabbed by Wolverine's claws in the heat of battle, when he tried to burn James alive in mystical flame.

In the wake of Mesmero's betrayal, James, Heather, and Logan tried to pick up the pieces of the team. But it was to little avail; Snowbird and Aurora were traumatized, disgusted and enraged at what they had done under Mesmero's control. Northstar wanted only revenge on the man who had raped his sister, Puck felt much the same. Sasquatch was in mourning for his friend and medical partner; the two had opened up a clinic together before joining Alpha Flight. Wolverine blamed himself for Shaman's death, and for not confronting Mesmero sooner. He began to seriously question his place with the team.

The final deathblow to Logan's involvement with Alpha Flight came when Department H assigned Shaman's daughter Talisman, a mystic like her father, to the team. While she got along well with everyone else and worked well with them as a team, upon meeting Wolverine, she immediately attacked the man who had killed her father. What Talisman lacked in experience, she made up for with raw power and fury, and for all his experience and prowess, it was all Logan could do to stay one step ahead of her attacks.

While James, Heather, and Sasquatch broke up the fight, Wolverine knew; Talisman was right. Whatever the circumstances, he had killed a teammate, and thus had no more place on the team.

Wolverine knew he had killed Shaman in the grip of a berserker rage. He needed to get that part of himself under control if he was ever going to be whole again. With that fact firmly in mind, he flew to Japan.

Mariko and Shingen Yashida

Logan wandered all over Japan in search of inner peace, enlightenment, and forgiveness...but never found any of those things until he stumbled across a woman in a garden in Agarashima. This woman, Mariko Yashida, was everything he was not: quiet, cultured, reserved, and poised. But at her core, he could see the same iron will, the same strength of morality and spirit, that he had lost and come to Japan to rediscover. After a short time of being acquainted with him, Mariko saw the good in Logan as well, and the two fell in love.

Unfortunately, Mariko was a member of the Yashida clan, an ancient and very traditionalist Japanese family. Their clan leader, Lord Shingen Yashida, had already disposed of one brother, Saburo, who had gotten too close to his ties with the Japanese underworld, and exiled his children as well. The other brother, Tomo, had been cowed into submission. When he learned of Mariko's attraction to a gaijin -- a Westerner -- Shingen was infuriated, and began wielding his power over his clan like a cudgel.

Claiming political necessity, Shingen forced Mariko into marriage to a crime lord in his service, Noburo Hideki. He was a selfish man who did not love her, and a cruel man who abused her, and Logan immediately tried to save her. However, Mariko had been raised under the principles of giri -- duty -- and so was bound to obey her father's wishes without complaint. Shingen then had Logan poisoned, then beat him badly in a sword duel, banishing him from Yashida Castle, forbidding Mariko from ever laying eyes on the man she loved again.

Yukio's Revelation

Now completely convinced of his lack of worth, Logan began to self-destruct. He attempted suicide on an almost-weekly basis, though his healing factor would continually repair the damage. He was in bar brawls nearly every night, sometimes letting others win so they would beat him, make him feel the pain he felt he deserved. Other times, he would beat his opponents half to death without batting an eye, trying to let the violence fill the hole inside him that had been left by Mariko's marriage.

Of course, the Hand were a constant problem. Indeed, after his banishment from Yashida Castle, they seemed more persistent than ever. Logan may have wanted to die at that point, but he wanted his death to be on his terms, not his enemies'. So he fought, as he always did, but there was no heart in his battle anymore, only the simple instinctive act of survival. Logan's body functioned, but he was hollow inside.

Eventually, he rallied himself again -- not for himself, but for another young girl, this one on the run from the Hand. Yukio had been wanted by the Hand, to be trained as their premier assassin as they had tried with Natasha Romanov in the 1940s. But where Natasha had only been a small child, Yukio was a grown woman, possessed of considerable talents herself, and she managed to stay one step ahead of them. Eventually, she and Logan teamed up, fighting side-by-side against their common foe. In the aftermath of the fight, Yukio revealed a startling truth; that she had come to Agarashima looking for the Hand's primary employer: Shingen Yashida.

Everything clicked for Logan in that instant. Shingen had been master of the Hand since their modern reincarnation, and had beaten and humiliated Logan as part of a calculated gamble, to make him vulnerable when they attacked. Even Mariko's wedding was another strike at Logan, using the woman he loved as a weapon to further hurt him.

The Lord Is Dead, Long Live The Lady

Galvanized by Yukio's information and his own revelations, Logan agreed to help Yukio attack Yashida Castle, in hopes that the two of them might slay Shingen and end the threat of the Hand, eliminating their biggest ally as well by putting Clan Yashida under a new Head.

While planning their ambush, they met two more allies -- Shiro and Rei Yashida, the children of Saburo, Shingen's brother whom he had had exiled. Now that their father was dead, they had become the pyrokinetics Sunfire and Sunpyre, and sought to avenge him by slaying Shingen and all his cronies within the Clan. Logan knew that neither he and Yukio, nor Shiro and Rei, had the skill or power to overcome the Hand and Shingen's guards on thier own. But together, they stood a far better chance.

The battle was as quick as it was brutal. By the end of the night, Yukio had decimated the Hand, Sunfire had slain the cowardly Tomo, Sunpyre had incinerated Hideki, freeing Mariko from his abuse, and Logan had fought Shingen in a rematch, and slain him. Only Logan knew that one element had been kept out of the fight: Shingen's younger son, Kenichiro, also called the Silver Samurai. Despite having the same dedication to duty and honor as his sister, he had seen Shingen's predations upon his family as a violation of the trust between Clan and Clan leader, and so guarded Mariko from all threats during the battle, seeing her as the true Head of Clan Yashida.

Indeed, following Shingen's death, all the surviving members of Clan Yashida saw Mariko as the rightful heir to the position, and so she ascended to it. Yukio was accepted into the Clan, and Mariko announced her engagement to Logan within a week of assuming the mantle of Lord.

Sunfire's Disappearance

One member of Clan Yashida yet remained who didn't believe Wolverine worthy of Mariko: Shiro. Mistrustful of all Westerners, even the one who had saved his family, Shiro stormed out of the Castle and into Agarashima to cool down. Unfortunately, he was captured by operatives of Weapon X, and taken by plane to Canada, where he would become part of their twisted project to create new super-soldiers out of mutants.

After he did not return for several hours, Logan tracked Shiro's scent trail to the docks, where he had been abducted, but the trail ended at an empty hangar. With Mariko's permission, he went to the US, hoping to contact the recently-thawed Captain America for help, and instead found a team of mutants, called the X-Men, who reminded him strongly of Alpha Flight. Logan and the X-Men eventually freed Shiro from Weapon X, though Shiro elected to remain with the team rather than return to Japan with Logan. With his mission accomplished, Logan went home.

Marriage to Mariko

Logan was now back in Japan and successful in his mission. While Mariko was disappointed to learn Shiro would be staying in America, she understood, and now nothing could stand in the way of their union.

James Logan and Mariko Yashida held a traditional Shinto wedding in Yashida Castle's temple. The entirety of the clan was there, along with Yukio and Psylocke, another new member of the Clan whom Wolverine had rescued/recruited. Alpha Flight was in attendance as well, barring Talisman, who still bore a grudge for Shaman's death. Even Captain America managed to put in an appearance for the sake of his old war buddy.

Logan now serves Clan Yashida alongside his wife, acting as Mariko's consort, champion, and occasionally, international liason and representative of the Clan. He also leads Clan Yashida's superpowered members, like Sunfire, Sunpyre, and the SIlver Samurai, in defense of their Clan, and Japan itself, from threats like the Hand, HYDRA, or the newly-formed Brotherhood of Mutant Liberation.

Powers

Logan possesses what is now considered to be the "standard" set of powers belonging to a unique subset of feral mutants, known to some in the scientific community as "the Romulus strain." He and Victor Creed (the original) are considered the oldest living examples of this type of mutant.

Healing Factor: Wolverine's primary mutant power is an ability, believed to be contained in his genetic code, that enables him to regenerate damaged or destroyed tissue with far greater efficacy than an ordinary human. Depending upon the severity of the injury he sustains, recovery can happen anywhere from nearly instantaneously to within the space of a few hours. These healing powers have been commonly referred to as his "healing factor." The full extent and speed of Wolverine's healing factor isn't known. He has been shown to fully heal from numerous gunshot wounds, severe burns covering most of his body, and even regenerate missing eyes within a matter of minutes.

  • Mental Healing: Logan's healing factor, in addition to recovering from physical wounds, also mends psychological scarring as a result of psychological trauma. However, in the process, his healing factor forces his mind to suppress the memories, sometimes resulting in amnesia. Wolverine sometimes called this his "mental scar tissue".
  • Disease/Poiaon Immunity: Wolverine's healing factor has cured him of many diseases and poisons within hours of contracting or being infected with them. Like Captain America, he is highly resistant to inebriation (to his chagrin), and while he picked up the bad habit of smoking during World War II and has never put it down since, his lungs show no evidence of tobacco contamination.
  • Longevity: Wolverine's healing factor greatly slows the effects of the aging process; despite being born sometime during the late 18th Century, and thus being well over 200 years of age, Wolverine retains the health, appearance, and vitality of a man in his physical prime.
  • Limitless Healing: Theoretically, since his healing factor is contained within his DNA, and therefore in every cell in his body, Logan could recover completely from having his skin, muscles, and internal organs incinerated from his skeleton within minutes. However, healing of this severity requires an external power source or sustenance factor as well, either to keep Logan alive (if his brain were ever to shut down, he would die, regardless of healing factor) or to hold the pieces of his body together long enough for him to regenerate.

Bone Claws: Wolverine possesses six retractable, 12-inch long claws, three in each arm, housed beneath the skin and muscle of his forearms. Unlike the claws of normal mammals which are made of keratin, these claws are solid bone, and are considered part of his skeleton. He can, at will, tense certain muscles within his arms to extend these slightly curved claws. The claws pierce through his skin between the knuckles on each hand; while the skin between the knuckles does tear and bleed, the blood loss is nearly always quickly halted by his healing factor. He can unsheathe or retract any number of his claws at once, although he needs to keep his wrists straight at the moment his claws pass from his forearms into his hands. When sheathed, the claws rest entirely within special bone housings within his forearms, allowing him to bend his wrists normally when they are retracted or extended. Wolverine's bone claws are sharp and dense enough to slice through substances as durable as metals, wood, and stone.

Superhuman Senses: Wolverine possesses supernally acute senses that are comparable to those of certain animals.

  • Vision: Logan can see in near-total and complete darkness, at far greater distances than a baseline human, with perfect clarity,
  • Hearing: His hearing is enhanced in a similar manner to his sight, allowing him to detect sounds ordinary humans couldn't hear at a greater distance, enough to hear a teardrop through thick walls with enough focus.
  • Scent: Logan can recognize people and objects by scent, even if they are well-hidden. He is able to track a target by scent, even if his target's scent has been greatly eroded by time or weather. Logan can also use his keen sense of smell to detect lies, due to chemical changes within a person's body affecting their scent.

Superhuman Strength: His natural strength is sufficient to break steel chains, support the weight of a dozen men with one arm, and throw a heavy (350+ lb.) man across a room with little effort. Wolverine's strength is sufficient to allow him to lift approximately 1 ton.

Superhuman Combat Speed: Due to years of intensive training and his natural mutation, Wolverine can attack faster than the eye could follow. Even trained, skilled combatants, like Psylocke, have been outpaced by his combat speed. He can even rush armed men before they have a chance to pull the triggers of their guns.

Insulated Weather Adaptation: Wolverine's body is highly resistant to certain elemental extremes, particularly cold, to the extent that, while not preferred, he is capable of sleeping nude in subarctic conditions with no lasting injury.

Animal Empathy: Less a power than a learned skill, Wolverine has the ability to sense the emotional state of animals on a basic level. He can usually detect fear, anger, happiness or pain with relative ease. He can also communicate with them non-verbally, to make the animal aware of his actions or intent, in a way only highly trained animal handlers are capable of.

Expert Tactician: Though rough and uncultured in demeanor, Wolverine is highly intelligent and a masterful strategist and tactician, thanks in large part to his many years of military service and operating within various teams of superhumans.

Hand-to-Hand Combat Proficiency/Master Martial Artist: Due to his extensive training as a member of the Invaders and Alpha Flight, a soldier, a spy, and Champion of Clan Yashida, Logan is an exceptional hand-to-hand fighter and martial artist, with expertise in several Japanese martial arts, and has mastered 15 forms of martial arts, including Special Forces Training from several countries. His extraordinary hand-to-hand combat ability made him one of the finest combatants on Earth, as he has been able to defeat various other hand-to-hand experts without resorting to his claws. Wolverine has made something of a side career in teaching hand-to-hand combat to others, including his Clansmen in the Yashida family: Sunfire, Sunpyre, and Mariko herself.

Multilingual: Though on occasion his amnesia makes him forget certain things, Wolverine is fluent in many languages, including English, Arabic, Japanese, Russian, Chinese, Cheyenne, Lakota, and Spanish; he also possesses somerudimentary knowledge of French, German, Thai, Vietnamese, Hebrew, and Portuguese.

Weaknesses

  • Vulnerable Senses: Wolverine's heightened senses can be taken advantage of. During his initial meeting with the X-Men, Banshee attacked him with a sonic scream that nearly killed him, despite the Irish mutant only intending for it to stun.
  • Drowning/Asphyxiation: Cutting the supply of oxygen to Logan's brain can kill him. While his healing factor can compensate and keep him alive for longer, he sees it as only prolonging the agony.
  • Decapitation: Logan has stated that he knows from experience that someone with a healing factor will die if they are decapitated. The details of this experience are as yet unknown, but there is little reason to doubt his word.
  • Amnesia: Logan's healing factor repairs psychological damage, just like it does physical. However, in the process, his healing factor often forces his mind to suppress the memories. Therefore, some truly traumatic experiences can leave him with no memory of who he is or where he is from.
  • Psychic Vulnerability: Logan's physical body and his mind can heal far faster than the average human; however, he is still highly vulnerable to psychic attacks. As a man whose being is grounded in his physical senses, Logan is often overly dependent on those, and therefore easier to fool with multi-sensory illusions. Reality-warpers in particular can shake Logan to his core with their ability to alter the physical world around him.
  • Berserker Rage: Lastly, Logan possesses a violent temper, though he struggles to control this day and night. Occasionally, given sufficient provocation, he will fly into a destructive berserker rage that makes him a danger to everyone and everything around him. Mesmero triggered one of these in Wolverine during his escape from Alpha Flight, and Logan slew his friend and teammate, Shaman, in the grip of it. He works especially hard to contain and control himself in the presence of his wife Mariko, as one of the things that outrages him most is domestic violence.
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