Black Athena

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Black Athena
Player: @EsperantoLives
"For the Future!"
Character Build
Class Focus: Melee Damage
Power Level: 40
Research & Development: Science (Mutation)
Biographical Data
Real Name: Dr. Octavia Mugambi
Known Aliases: "Princess of Power"
Gender: Female
Species: Mutant
Ethnicity: African (Tutsi)
Place of Birth: North Kivu, Zaire
Base of Operations: Van Vogt Building, Millennium City
Relatives: None
Age: 40
Height: 7'2"
Weight: 520 lbs
Eyes: Hazel
Hair: Black
Physical Build: Muscular
Physical Features:
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Neutral Good

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Identity: Publicly Known
Years Active: 20
Citizenship: Naturalized Citizen of the United States of America with no criminal record
Occupation: Biochemist, Mutant Adventurer
Education: PhD in Biochemistry and Nuclear Physics
Marital Status: Single
Known Powers and Abilities
Superhuman Strength, Invulnerability, Super Leaping
Equipment and Paraphernalia
Electroreactive Molecule Costume, Computer Watch, Rocket Pack
ReldinBox Template



An amazon scientist from Africa, Black Athena is a superstrong mutant powerhouse. She's dedicated to the idea mutants can use their powers to make contributions.

Extremely self-confident, assertive and proud with a strong force of personality, she has a bad temper, though, and speaks her mind; she wears her emotions on her sleeve and loves to show off her superstrength and is usually eager to scrap with foes. She has a sense of humor, and enjoys wisecracking her way through fights. Experienced and savvy, Black Athena is a figure in the heroic community, especially the mutant and scientific worlds. Based in the top five floors of the Van Vogt building, Black Athena is one of the world's foremost experts on biochemistry and the science of mutant powers, and devotes her strength and intellect to helping out and mentoring young mutants.

Blackathena superjump.png

Black Athena personifies the exploration and adventure of the nuclear age. She is often exploring scientific mysteries in places like Subterranea, the Ice Kingdom of Hyperborea, and and leading a rocket group to expeditions on other planets.


1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10

"Sugar, I got so much superstrength, you can borrow some sometime." (wink) - Black Athena

Blackathena liftcar.jpg
  • Super-Strength. Black Athena is bench press near 100 tons. She can flip over tanks, smash through walls, and punch the ground hard enough to make a miniature earthquake. With her great scientific ability, she can use her superstrength in tactical ways, like striking a man made of pure diamond right at the cleave point to break them apart.

"Oh...I see where this is going. You're going to make the bulletproof lady do all the hard stuff! Well, don't worry, guys - I'll catch the baddies' attention and bullets with my famous hazel eyes." - Black Athena

  • Invulnerability. Bursting tank shells cannot penetrate Black Athena's invulnerable, indestructible skin. She is immune to extremes of heat and cold even found on other planets, corrosive chemicals, and has survived falls from over 10,000 feet without a parachute. She can hold her breath for hours, and can exert herself for hours without exhaustion. The implications on her longevity are unknown, but it is believed she has an increased lifespan.
  • Super-Leaping. Black Athena's superstrong leg muscles allow her to clear a quarter-mile at a jump.

From the Journal of Doctor Octavia Mugambi, dated June 2005:

"As nearly as I can tell, the source of my mutant ability are my cells, my mitochondria are like miniature nuclear reactors. Darn things flash like Christmas lights under a microscope. I have noticed I give off a strange glow under blacklight, which is a great trick at raves, but it frightened me at first...until I was able to find out my radioactivity was in the safe range."


Black Athena is bold, brassy and daring, outrageous and non-traditional, no longer caring what people think about her. She also is intense and prone to intense emotions, prone to extremes of anger and passion. Black Athena is a person of great integrity, and she doesn't "make deals" or "compromise" even if it's the easier course of action. She is outsider-sympathetic, and doesn't automatically assume something unknown is hostile. She has an dislike of the military, who she believes with some justification see mutants as weapons and scientists as pawns.

Black Athena is "Type-A," driven and workaholic, self-disciplined, and gravitates to positions of leadership. Her preferred course of action is aggressive and direct, though she is a good strategist when her temper doesn't get in the way. Unlike other superstrong types she is stylish, sensual and effortlessly fashionable in a queenly, regal way.

Black Athena is old fashioned and traditional, prefers jazz and soul music and dislikes hip-hop and rock. A rationalist and scientist, she has an almost childlike giddiness and glee for unusual discoveries, technologies, and mysteries. A rationalist, she distrusts scientific explanations.

Expert scientist and biochemist.


"It's nothing, honey. Just something any garden variety, everyday supergenius could do." - Black Athena

Black Athena is one of the world's foremost experts on mutation and the science of superpowers, and has a PhD in Nuclear Physics and Biochemistry. An all-round scientist and Renaissance Woman, she is also trained in biology, genetics, rocketry, vehicular engineering, chemistry, robotics, geology, and computer science.

Black Athena is also a skilled and experienced hand to hand combatant, brawler and Olympic level athlete. She is also trained in weightlifting and bodybuilding.


Blackathena rocketpack.png

"Electroreactive molecules! They're a girl's best friend, a whole wardrobe in one." - Black Athena

  • Electroreactive molecular costume. Black Athena wears a costume made of electroreactive molecules, which can assume different pre-programmed colors, textures, lengths and shapes with an electrical signal. This means she only needs one costume that can change shape.
  • Wrist-Computer. Her wrist-computer is equivalent to a high-powered desktop able to be worn on the wrist with instant access to PRIMUS databases and radio transmissions.
  • Rocket-Pack. It telescopes out and has a minimum of 20 minutes of flight due to limited fuel, but can achieve velocities of over 200 miles per hour.


Young Black Athena in North Kivu, circa 1986.

Always An Outsider: 'Jungle Action' with Young Black Athena

Exerpted from an interview with Black Athena in Playboy, August 2006:

"The Congo is like any rural part of the world anywhere else in the world, I suppose: full of busibodies and insular conservative traditionalist types that like their women walking backwards and all that. I didn't know I was a mutant, but I was always odd and an outsider and I was different."

"That's where I was the biggest rebel of all by being a rationalist, being a scientist. I used to talk about how the witch doctors had no power over sickness and we should trust in real doctors, which was actually dangerous to my life, but I'm a real careful girl and I could handle the heat. I was the first girl in my villiage to start a model rocketry club - and I dreamed about building the real thing someday to explore space. I wasn't exactly cut out to be a housewife at all, and my father knew it. Dad was a survivor of the Tutsi/Watussi genocide in Burundi in 1970, where he immigrated to the Kivu in the Congo. Dad never went to college at all, and wanted better for me...despite the fact the older people didn't approve of girls reading, he made sure I had plenty of Popular Mechanics and any science book he could find. Dad wanted to make sure I went to college someday, which was almost crazy considering where we were."

"More than anything I wanted to be away from there, somewhere exciting and glamorous like America. I used to listen to American rock music and I once thumbed it to the village elders by trying to get my ears pierced. For some reason, the drill kept breaking when they tried it. Anyway, I knew I'd be a scientist someday and live in America...and honey, when I set my mind to something, it gets done! Most of what I did growing up was there in the Dave Michelinie comic, Young Black Athena. People ask me if it was really like that growing up in the Congo. I tell them...'not at all. It was much worse!

Thangor, the Jungle Lord

"He was the first boy I ever loved! He had an incredible body...I've always had a taste for beefcake, don't you know! He was beautiful on the inside too, noble and uncorrupted, instead of some phony that wants you to be his property. I was just discovering I had mutant superstrength, and with our muscles and his 'bionosaur' buddies together with my science know-how, we fought VIPER and ARGENT and other mercenary forces in the Congo, discovered Arentia the City of Silver, and battled supervillain poachers like the Ivan Carr, the White Tiger. Make no mistake, the greatest beasts in the Congo are men. I managed to get up and running an early version of what would later be my all-terrain Chariot."

The Hidden Years: Secret Battles

Black Athena was able to get a college scholarship to the University of Oslo after saving the life of a scientist. She left after her father died of kidney cancer. While at college, she met other mutants and fought 'Secret Battles' to keep mutants all over Europe safe.

First Meeting With Polaria the Ice Empress

By astonishing coincidence of the sort that are common in superheroic circles, Black Athena was made became the room-mate at the University of Oslo of the only other mutant student, who would eventually become her greatest enemy: misanthropic, cynical Borea Magnus, who by special permission was allowed to have a room with a son. Octavia and Borea were both science students, and had tremendous drive and Type A personalities, though opposites in every way. They were called "den hvite jotunkvinne og den svarte jotunkvinne," (or, the white giantess and the black giantess).


Tempest, as he looked when he escaped from the ice-prison Black Athena and Polaria placed him in years and years later.

Both Octavia and Borea were grad student assistants mentored by the mutant researching visiting Italian scientist, Dr. Prospero Milano, who was secretly a mutant himself and after going mad and becoming a megalomaniac would later become the weather-controlling supervillain Tempest. All three worked together and fought many "secret battles" to rescue young mutants in Norway and the rest of Europe from organizations like VIPER, the Institute for Human Advancement, Victor Volt, and Professor Muerte and his Terror, Inc., with Borea as notably more ruthless and murderous than the enlightened, humanistic Dr. Milano and Octavia Mugambi. Since the death of her father, Dr. Milano became the closest thing she had to a father-figure and mentor.

Slowly, however, Dr. Milano started to go mad, and as he went crazy his powers increased. Octavia and Borea, with regret, were forced to seal him in a cryonic prison, where he would be sealed until his eventual escape years later.

The Tragic End of Polaria the Ice Empress and Black Athena's Friendship

Polaria the Ice Empress in Questionite Arctic War-Armor

Borea had a single son, whose father is unknown. Her son Nicholas was an entirely normal human, and Borea tried desperately to find a way to make her son a mutant or to give him powers. She eventually found one: attaching him to a hydroelectric power plant and channeling the incredible amount of current into him through a device of hers. Octavia double checked Borea's calculations and realized that though it would give her son powers, it would also cause the dam to explode, killing millions in the city of Oslo. The downside, however, was that if the machine was turned off, it would kill the child.

Octavia Mugambi was presented with a horrible choice. Even if she saved the city, it would kill a child.

Octavia went into battle against her best friend, knowing that it would kill Borea's innocent son if she was victorious. Borea was furious, and shot to kill, believing her friend intended to kill her son – and in her arrogance believed she was well in control, no problems would take place. Octavia realized her friend had been driven over the deep end by her son and reasoning with her was not possible. The two former friends fought over and over to the battering point of exhaustion, but eventually Octavia deactivated the device, resulted in the death of Borea's son, and saved the city of Oslo.

In the ensuing collapse of the dam after the battle, Octavia believed Borea had died. She always viewed the death of Borea's son as her greatest shame.

"Here's the part that keeps me awake at night, that keeps me from sleeping. What if…what if I was wrong? I triple, quadruple checked her calculations, but…there's no way to really know. Maybe…Polaria knew exactly what she was doing. Maybe nothing would happen. Maybe I killed my best friend's son for absolutely no reason at all." – Black Athena

Debut in Millennium City

Blackathena superjump.jpg

After graduating college with a degree in Nuclear Physics and Biochemistry, Octavia came to Millennium in the early 1990s as a rocket scientist. After sealing Tempest in a prison, she vowed to continue her mentor's work. This time not secretly, but openly. She would be open about being a mutant and never hide who she is.

Her first case came when the sub-branch of the Lemurian race known as the Subterraneans attacked Millennium City with atomic drill machines and toxic nuclear monsters and Inhumanoids, with the aim of destroying all rocketry research including the facility Athena worked. Black Athena was an instant hit in the fledgling city, a controversial, outrageous and photogenic female mutant.

Black Athena got her name from a news article in the Millennium City Ledger:

"Who is this beautiful bronzed Venus, this black Athena? In the years to come it is this reporter's hope that she will lend her great strength to the cause of right, to battle on for the future."

It is from this letter that supposedly Black Athena got her name. "It's as as good a name as any. And besides, I love the classics and Athena seems like my kind of gal." The article also gave Black Athena her battle cry: "FOR THE FUTURE!"

Black Athena worked closely with PRIMUS, who helped her get U.S. Citizenship with an unspoken "we helped you, now you help us" clause. It was PRIMUS that also got Athena her HQ on the top five floors of the Van Vogt Building in downtown Millennium City, formerly of the Van Vogt paper company.

Early Battles

The majority of Black Athena's early battles were against evil mutant enemies like the Horrible Harpies (six mind-linked sewer-dwelling sisters with horrific bird mutations who delighted in cruelty, who had a secret seventh sister they loathed), the all-robot superteam known as the Metal Marauders, the mystic known as the Third Eye, as well as Utility, a normal human who came up with plans intended to defeat mutants for no other reason than sport.

The Return of Polaria, the Ice Empress

Black Athena in arctic gear.

"At the world's end...lies the beginning of vengeance! Watch out, Black Athena…your greatest enemy shows revenge is a dish best served cold."Black Athena: Power Princess #5, "Vengeance of the Ice Empress"

When Norwegian and Russian icebreaker ships begin to disappear at the polar regions, Black Athena leads an expedition into uncharted arctic regions to save the crew, only to discover the legendary Ice City of Hyperborea, Ultima Thule, a land of woolly mammoths and the legendary Icemen…survivors of lost Lemuria and heir to its superscientific secrets who are unable to survive in anything but chill temperatures, an all-male race ruled by their terrifying Ice-Empress: Polaria, a former enemy from Black Athena's past who blames her for the death of her son. This story is extraordinary in that it was Black Athena's first real loss ever.

In the years since she was believed lost, Polaria lived as the Ice-Empress of the legendary lost city of Hyperborea for years, and was only rumored to exist, periodically destroying Russian, Danish and Norwegian ships and icebreakers that came too close to her kingdom, earning a fearsome reputation among sailors.

When Black Athena escaped, shrugging off her terrible loss, the Ice Empress had no intention of ever letting go of her revenge. She revealed herself to the world in the most grandiose means possible: a giant takeover of Millennium City. She froze the entirety of the Detroit River and Lake Erie and her Ice Warrior forces charged over unopposed on woolly mammoths and snow tanks, a blizzard keeping out air support. A giant mile-high glacier of a type unseen since the Ice Age moved to crush the entire city.

Black Athena, sick of running, and knowing she was outmatched, took a stand against the powerful Ice-Empress...a battle from which only Black Athena emerged alive.

Group Affiliations

The Vanguards

When asked about her association with the Vanguards:

"They asked me to join...well, they asked for it! Watch out, fellas! I said I'd be running the place inside a month and I was right. I'm not the first person to join this team, but I figure I'm sort of like the late season addition to boost ratings, a breakout character who took over by force of personality, like Seven of Nine, Urkel, or Fonzie."

"I'm used to being the science expert, the one that analyzes meteorites and all that, which seems to be my lot in life and best use for my skill set. With the Vanguards, though, I'm asked to be the strategist, and that should worry just about everyone, especially me! I guess it's because I'm an experienced old warhorse of a hero, and I've got it together more than most...and hey, I've got animal magnetism. Still, that is an amusing situation."

"And they keep on trying to sell me on a Moonbase! Not on my watch they won't. You don't need to have a couple PhDs in science and vehicular engineering to start to see where that's...a bit of a problem. Besides, that's so very 'Justice League,' and I'm a very partisan Marvel Zombie ever since they published my comic back in the 1990s."

Views of Organizations in the Champions Universe

VIPER: "What does VIPER actually stand for, anyway? It doesn't really matter, I guess they're the brand name of evil, like Coke. Personally, I think it's Violent Imbeciles in Pajamas, Exterminate Right away (Please!). When I first started out, I figured I could lick an auditorium full of guys with laser guns, no sweat. Hard earned experience shows it's not that simple, because they use strategy, teamwork and squad tactics and they could bring down mutants. Take it from a scientist, they've got widgets and gadgetry 10-20 years in advance of anything currently in existence. The really scary whackjobs are the people that treat VIPER like a religion. The scum that are into VIPER for the cash and crime? I don't like 'em, but I can deal with 'em. The looney tune fanatics that raise snakes and take suicide pills when captured? Not so much. I'm big, for sure…but crazy beats big every time.

VIPER ADDER DIVISION: "I didn't think that was possible, but I guess those crooked scientists and engineers found a place filled with more poisonous snakes than academia. From what I hear, VIPER takes "publish or perish" pretty literally. I guess I can see why they'd sell out and join VIPER. A PhD doesn't go as far as it used to these days, you know. And given a choice between VIPER's basically unlimited money and benefits, and working as an underpaid test tube monkey, it's not much of a choice…if you got the scruples of a rattlesnake, that is. Money doesn't buy honor, though. Or respect. But it sure can go a long way to buying a tacky McMansion and jewelry for the Asian trophy wife. I save an extra-special punch in the face for these guys."

DEMON: "Now these guys are especially satisfying to lay into! Creeps trying to use superstition to scare and terrify? I had a bellyful of that kind of thing growing up in Zaire, where lots of people think HIV can be cured by raping a virgin. They say they have great mystic powers and all, but it's all simple tricks and nonsense to scare weak-minded suckers. I know for a fact it doesn't help 'em when I lay the almighty, atomic-powered smackdown into 'em! How do you like me now, O Great and Powerful Oz? I said, how do you like me now?"

PSI: "I remember following Nathaniel Poe's research in psychic powers like white on rice when it was coming out. What do you know, I guess his mental potential releasing drug actually worked. Psimon, Hypnos, Medusa, are all lazy rats riding the gravy train of a great scientist's invention and then sent him to jail when he'd given him what they wanted. A bunch of lying weasels, every single one, especially Psimon. And don't get me started on Nate's loser son, Kevin! Talk about not living up to your potential.

LANCER (PSI): Now, the only one that weirds me out in that entire group, that I can't make heads or tails of, is Lancer. She claims to be from an alternate universe where Psis and mutants were hunted and feared and that she knew me…or at least my future counterpart. At the time I thought it was a trick or a head-game, but after the battle I'm not so sure anymore. She didn’t get anything from telling me that, but I know for a fact she did test as a mutant, not a recipient of the Poe treatment...and she does have a lot of know-how when it comes to hit and run guerilla tactics. This probably sounds as nuts to you as it does to me…but I actually believe her. And she's actually tried to reach me since then to tell me something. I wonder…"

ARGENT: "Prepare to be totally blindsided here! A scheming multinational corporation is secretly evil and corrupt! Oh, no, guys! Oh, no! You know, this is exactly why I don't share technical secrets with anyone, because somehow or another it gets into the hands of oily, slipstick guys like these. And that's not all. They're top exploiters of vulnerable and afraid young mutants they can blackmail and ruin their lives. Now that just makes me upset…little old me, who's never been known to lose her temper before! And then you have Mechassassin. I have to admit, that second-rate Boba Fett is good…well, for a homo sapiens that is."

THE CROWNS OF KRIM AND DARK SERAPH: "They tried to capture me once because I was the Bride of the Sixth Crown or some other bull-puckey like that. Sorry boys…you know how hard it is to find a crown in 'my' size?"

EUROSTAR: "Scorpia is a nasty piece of work, no mistake. She betrayed and murdered her lover, Professor Muerte. I fought the good Prof in the old days, and he was a megalomaniac for sure, but he deserved a better end than what he got. And Durak? Every time I fight Eurostar, I pair up against him because some rule I'm unfamiliar with says that superstrong people have to play celebrity deathmatch. Bullies like that can only be beaten with more muscle, and I've got that in spades. What, I'm supposed to quake in my buttercup yellow booties because some grumpy Russkie's eaten his wheaties? That crumb couldn't take me on a month full of Sundays. He's as smart as he is good looking."

DR. DESTROYER: "They didn't find a body, so he's not really dead – seriously, people, did you become a superhero like…yesterday? That's Supervillain Rule #451. Usually I wisecrack and braggadocio my way through fights, but I can't bring myself to do it here. That guy has some powerful, powerful mojo. He's serious business and the only joke here is that some folks actually think he's dead. I only encountered him once and only once before he "died" (ha, ha) in Detroit, when he was trying to get Destruga (aka Destroyer Island) recognized as a separate nation. Every time I feel like I'm invincible hot stuff, I bring myself down to earth by remembering how easily Dr. Destroyer took me out with a neural paralysis ray in his gauntlets. He then did something I still can't believe – he made me actually bleed with his tachyon-charged sword. And that was with the tech he had 16 years ago. No doubt about it, though, the guy's a genius. I'd give up chocolate for a chance to look at the blueprints for his power suit just once."

TV Tropes Pages

The following are TV-Tropes that Black Athena follows.

Black Athena and Samson.
  • All Amazons Want Hercules - Preference for masculine, muscular guys. For heaven's sake her current boyfriend is named 'Samson.'
  • Broken Pedestal - Athena's former mentor, Tempest - who before he went mad was the closest thing she had to a real father.
  • But Not Too Foreign - despite being from the Congo, Black Athena is fully Americanized, as she admired the glamour, freedom for women, and science of America compared to her own rural part of the world. She has fully Americanized speech, and only a minimal French accent.
  • Eyes of Gold - Black Athena has a mutation for hazel eyes.
  • Improbable Weapon User Specifically, lamp posts, boulders, chucked cars and tanks, stop signs, and nearby fat people.
A photo shoot for a glamour magazine.
  • Load Bearing Hero - "It never fails...every time we're in a mine about to collapse or a spaceship about to be torn apart, guess who's elected to hold things up so all you squishies can high tail it?"
  • My Greatest Failure - Black Athena blames herself for the death of Polaria the Ice Empress's young son. What a coincidence, because Polaria also blames Black Athena for this!
  • Rogues Gallery - Polaria the Ice Empress, Tempest, the Horrible Harpies, the Metal Marauders... "I make friends wherever I go. I'm a people person."
  • Sassy Black Woman - Black Athena is opinionated and speaks her mind and has a zero-tolerance policy for idiots.
  • Science Hero- uses science to solve problems and out-think opponents.
  • Ultraterrestrials - The Empyreans, the ancient super-race that Athena was accepted by...sometimes as a hero, another time as an enemy.

Theme Music

(Personally, I think theme songs are retarded - reminds me of how my Grandpa used to nod off to Kenny Rogers' "The Gambler," thinking it was deep and represented his whole worldview. But other people have it so why not me?)

Alan Parsons Project - Hyper Gamma Space

(Can't go wrong with Alan Parsons' instrumentals.)

Rinder & Lewis - Lust (If you've never heard of R&L - shame on you! A whole new generation discovered these guys thanks to their creating the "In Search Of" theme music.)

Pat Benatar - Invincible

The Commodores - Brick House (This one is actually added for the hipster camp value.)


Black Athena's inspirations are pretty obvious - I'm a True Believer through and through and she talks like Stan Lee writes her.

By the way, she's named after African American science fiction writer Octavia Butler.