Martha was a mutant runaway who was captured by the human supremacist group, the U-Men. Their founder John Sublime had her brain removed from her body, keeping the disembodied brain alive in a capsule. She has the power to negate any mutant's powers, like Leech. Sublime controlled her through drugs and syringes and used her to subdue his opponents, the two X-Men, Cyclops and Emma Frost. The two X-Men eventually broke free of her control, after which Martha took her revenge on Sublime by causing him to fall to his death. She later became a student in the Xavier Institute's Special Class. Quentin Quire invented a special hovering case to hold her brain, usually linked to a chain held by Ernst, a mysterious, super-strong mutant appearing like an old woman, who often repeated Martha's telepathic communications.
It is revealed that Martha was one of the students that had joined Xorn's new Brotherhood of Mutants, alongside Ernst. However, Martha's loyalty would not last as she predicted that Xorn's scheme to murder every human in Manhattan as well as turn the planet earth upside down would fail miserably. Following Xorn's death, Martha has not been regularly featured in any of the X-Men titles.
Quest for Magik
Martha was mentioned by Anole. She has a small cameo during the Quest For Magik story arc in New X-Men #39. She can be seen along with the Stepford Cuckoos wearing a special telepathy blocking helmet.
Divided We Stand
Beast finds Martha and retrieves her from the ruined Xavier Institute in a carrying case.
Martha is later featured in a one-shot story entitled "Martha Johansson vs. Quentin Quire: 7 1/2." Now relocated to the mutant save haven of Utopia, Martha finds herself the appointed "arch-nemesis" for a newly revived Quentin Quire. Finding life on a higher plane to be "boring," Quentin revives himself and decides to become a villain and secretly destroy Utopia, claiming that the X-Men stole his idea to create a mutant nation. Making a game of his master plan, he gives Martha seven and a half minutes to attempt to stop him. Martha attempts to alert the X-Men and locate Quentin, but he manages to intercept and taunt her at each attempt, ultimately smashing her container and leaving her to die. Martha realizes that Quentin has infiltrated Cerebra to destroy the island and attempted to take revenge on the Cuckoos by putting them in a mental loop. Martha outsmarts Quentin's plans by using her powers to tip off Celeste to an error in Quentin's mental loop. The Cuckoos are able to break free and quickly defeat him. They send help for Martha and thank her for saving them. Martha reflects on the experience, finding that she enjoyed it and contemplating the possibility of taking up superheroism.
Powers and Abilities
- Telepathy: Martha is a telepath, and her powers in this area are shown as being quite advanced, to the degree that she is capable of overpowering Emma Frost's subconscious defenses (it should however be mentioned that Emma's telepathy was inoperative at the time, as she was in her "diamond" form and thus had solely the scope of her willpower to rely on) and manipulating entire teams of individuals.
- Power Negation She has the power to negate any other mutant's powers, like Leech. The range of this power has yet to be seen, but it is known that she can do it at will, unlike Leech.
Has no body.
Martha is carried around in a floating glass chamber.