This minor Marvel character appeared but twice.
He had a small role in Captain America in 1988, and made an unexpected return 20 years later in Thunderbolts.
- Real Name: Mark Diering.
- Known Relatives: None.
- Group Affiliation: Former Washington state park ranger.
- Base Of Operations: WA.
- Height: 5’11” (1.80m). Weight: 185 lbs. (84 Kg.).
- Eyes: Brown. Hair: Black.
Powers and Abilities
Brother Nature can control, well, nature. The soil, the animals, the rocks, the wind, etc..
He can even control lightning, though he will only use it in clear cases of self-defence.
It is possible that he can control water or even natural fires, but this isn’t demonstrated. And it seems likely that he can control plants, but would rather not to avoid damaging them.
The effects he creates take a while to disperse even if he’s no longer concentrating on them. This allows him to run several effects at once. For instance, against the Thunderbolts he started by rising a large jetstream pushing them back and preventing them from reaching him. Then he started to call down lightning strikes on them.
A passionate outdoorsman, the man who would become Brother Nature became a park ranger in the state of Washington. He worked hard for more than three years.
Diering then tried to prevent the sale of ten thousand acres of virgin timberland to disreputable private developers. He funded a lawsuit on his own, to prevent ancient redwoods from being taken down.
But he was laughed out of court.
They wouldn’t listen
The ranger was so furious that he waged a one-month eco-terrorist campaign against the developers. But he was caught by the workers, beaten up until he seemed dead, and buried in a ditch via bulldozer.
While he laid below the earth, Diering had a vision of “the goddess of the earth”. She told him he was nature’s guardian warrior, and gave him superhuman powers.
In the Marvel Universe, the role of the earth goddess throughout known pantheons is played by a single entity, Gaia. As far as we know, she does not operate that way.
Therefore, it is likely Brother Nature was a late-blooming mutant who hallucinated. Or perhaps he was contacted by a lesser entity, such as a nature spirit.
Brother Nature drove the developers out. He then began patrolling an expanding area of forest to prevent it from being despoiled.
This is how he ran into the Captain (Steve Rogers). They got into a fight but Brother Nature could not touch the Captain.
Diering fell into a crevasse of his own making along with his opponent. Cap fixed Brother Nature’s damaged ankle and ribs then helped him out of the crevasse.
Realising that, in fighting the Captain, he had devastated a significant area of forest, Brother Nature left, demoralised.
Brother Nature presumably continued to make sure forested areas in his home state remained untouched. Probably even from fires, since forest fire damage largely stem from human intervention.
Brother Nature appeared again in 2008, when the government-managed Thunderbolts (Songbird, Venom, Moonstone, Penance, the Swordsman III, the Radioactive Man) were sent to arrest him as an unregistered superhuman after the Civil War.
They found him to be surprisingly powerful and he managed to hold them off for a while.
Songbird decided to go for psychological tactics instead. She threatened to have the Radioactive Man burn and irradiate vast amounts of old growth forest. Unable to accept such massive and lasting destruction, Brother Nature surrendered.
Brother Nature is not genuinely violent (unless provoked). He just wants to make the forest pristine and virgin again.
He speaks like your stereotypical tree-hugging hippy, with v1960s pop culture references. Such as calling the Captain “Easy Rider”, since he was on a road trip on a Harley and wearing a US flag helmet.
He’s understandably bitter over the decades of derision about his work to prevent the devastation of the planet we live on.
When he clashed Captain America, Brother Nature clearly had no experience with superhuman combat. He was trying half-random things and lacked strategy and control. However, when it came to fighting the Thunderbolts, he seemed much more collected and experienced.
“Anyway, I’m glad you’re okay. I didn’t mean to hurt anyone. I just wanna save the trees. Now if I were you, I’d get on that fossil-burning pollutant machine of yours and split, dig ?”
“So you’re gonna play good citizen and take me in, is that it ? Forget it, dude ! The laws of men don’t apply to me anymore ! I serve higher laws ! The laws of nature !”
“Do yourself a favor, man, and go away ! I’m not into violence, but nature is full of fury ’cause of what men do to her !”
“Stop ! This is an old-growth forest ! You’re destroying life that’s been here for centuries !”
“I’m a hippie, sister. I’m not stupid.”
DC Universe Adaptation
(This section proposes ways of using this character in DC Universe stories).
Brother Nature could have been chosen as one of their “new men” by the Guardians during the Millennium. But he was probably killed by the Manhunters, leaving the Guardians with no other option but to use the Floronic Man.
DC Heroes RPG
|Dex: 04||Str: 03||Bod: 04|
|Int: 04||Wil: 04||Min: 04|
|Inf: 04||Aur: 03||Spi: 04|
|Init: 012||HP: 015|
Air control: 12, Animal control: 07, Animal summoning: 07, Earth control: 14, Lightning: 12, Speak with animals: 07
Bonuses and Limitations:
- Earth control is only usable to move volume of earth. This generally means creating instant crevasses.
- Crevasses from Earth control are considered to be 3 APs deep for falling purposes – a 06/06 attack against BODY/BODY. Falling in the first place occurs if Brother Nature gains RAPs from a Accuracy/Earth Control roll against DEX/DEX).
- Lightning is Indirect, striking from the skies.
Accuracy (all Powers): 06, Medicine (First aid): 02, Survival (Forest): 04.
Vehicles (Land): 03 and perhaps Weaponry (Firearms): 03 from his days as a ranger are likely.
Area Knowledge (Old-growth forests throughout Washington state), Familiarity (Park ranger stuff).
SIA toward saving the trees, man ; Mistrust.
Our New Powers document has additional material for Air Control. It’s useful of you want him to pull the same defensive tactic he successfully used against the Thunderbolts.
Water Control and Weather Control are likely but not clearly demonstrated.
DC Adventures RPG
Brother Nature — Averaged PL 6
Forces of nature ● 28 points ● Descriptor: ?
- Instant crevasse (Burst Area Damage 6 Linked to Burst Area Affliction 8
(Resisted by Dodge; Vulnerable, Defenseless), Limited Degree; Limited (targets must be in contact with the ground.
- Gust of Wind (Burst Area 2 Move Object 5, Close Range, Limited Direction: Straight Away, Increased Duration (Concentration)).
- Lightning strikes (Ranged electrical Damage 11, Indirect 2).
- Animal friends (Summon 4, Variable type 1 (local forest animals)].
- Enhanced Advantages (Animal Empathy, Skill Mastery (Forest survival), Tracking).
- Almost certainly other effects with natural elements, vegetation, etc.
Defensive Roll 1.
Athletics 2 (+3), Expertise (Forest lore and survival) 7 (+8), Insight 2 (+3), Perception 3 (+4), Ranged combat (Forces of Nature effects) 9 (+10), Treatment 2 (+3) (Limited 2 to first aid), Vehicles 4 (+5) (Limited 2 to common land vehicles).
|Unarmed +5, Close, Damage 1.|
|Forces of nature +10, by effect.|
* Without Defensive Roll.
- Save the trees Brother Nature’s priority is to save old-growth forests.
- I sing the hippy eremitic Brother Nature apparently lives entirely off the grid
- Truth to power Brother Nature is hunted by law enforcement, by people whose livelihood depends on exploiting forests, by people who hate environmentalists, etc..
- Trade-off areas. Attack/Effect PL 11, Dodge/Toughness PL 04, Parry/Toughness PL 04, Fort/Will PL 05.
- Points total 79. Abilities 22, Defences 14, Skills 14, Powers 28, Devices 00, Advantages 1. Equiv. PL 6.
I’ve kept the Summon effect short, GR-style, because diving in would a/ result in lots of verbiage that b/ could easily be wrong since we only see him use that power a handful of times and c/ today’s migraine is pretty bad.
But he can sometimes summon more Minions if they are social animals with a lower point budgets (e.g., a dozen bucks). And sometimes he can only get a less powerful Minion (e.g., an owl rather than a bear) because it’s what was the nearest.
The Enhanced Advantages feels right (especially in an Array), and are things that help explain what happens on-page, but they are still somewhat speculative.
He’s curiously low PL, since if you can get past his fairly impressive Power he’s a sitting wild duck.
Source of Character: Captain America v1 #336 (and much more recently Thunderbolts – Breaking Point).
Helper(s): Capita_Senyera, Kal El el Vigilante.