Christmas Madman (Luke Cage enemy) (Marvel Comics) final executioner appearance

“Christmas Madman”

Power Level:
Game system: DC Heroes Role-Playing Game


Cage ran into this bloke early on, in 1973. It… wasn’t the best story ever, being a bit of nonsense riffing off Dickens’ Christmas Carol. But heh, maybe there are better stories to be told about this guy.


  • Real Name: Unrevealed.
  • Marital Status: Unrevealed.
  • Known Relatives: None.
  • Group Affiliation: Allegedly a former OSS member.
  • Base Of Operations: New York City.
  • Height: 5’11” Weight: 180 lbs.
  • Eyes: Unrevealed Hair: Unrevealed


Powers and Abilities

The madman was apparently a well-trained athlete, marksman and possibly spy. He was an excellent actor with strong presence, and good at disguise and costuming.

One of his best assets was his sheer savagery and his insanity-borne strength. These were surprising even for Cage.


This madman described his life, but his account was weird and full of holes. So it probably was incorrect, if not outright fantasy. And he probably was playing a character when he did so.

In this account, he was a former OSS agent. During Victory Day at the end of WWII, he supposedly absconded with the USA’s third atomic bomb, since security was exceptionally relaxed. But over the decades he considered that the world was becoming more and more decadent and warlike. By 1973, he had decided to destroy it.

Ghost of the past, present and future

When he first appeared, he was pretending to be an eccentric fellow pretending to be from Victorian times. This character was called “Marley, a dealer in chains”. He was beating up a paper boy with his cane in front of the Temple/Bernstein free street clinic.


Cage intervened, punching the cane into tender and driving “Marley” away. As a result the madman became fixated on Cage, and eager to test him further.

Cage and his friend Claire Temple next encountered a legless Việt Nam war veteran on the street. Not recognising the disguised madman, Cage gave him some coins. But the beggar then pretended to flip out, and shot Cage with a submachinegun. Cage protected Temple and angrily shredded the gun with his bare hands. But he didn’t assault the “crippled vet”, who retreated.

When Temple and Cage left the bar, the madman ambushed them again. This time he wielded laser weaponry and pretended to be a police militiaman from a 1984 -like dystopic future. A laser probably could hurt Cage, but Cage nevertheless body-slammed the “militiaman” to protect Temple.

Since the newest act was too far-out, Cage realized that it was the same man as “Marley” and the insane vet. Despite the madman’s incredible strength, Luke took him down.

The nuclear option

However, the madman overcame the police once Cage had his back turned, and fled. Cage gave chase, but the madman donned a Santa Klaus office. Assuming he was a mall Santa, Cage approached to ask if he had seen the fugitive. The madman knocked him out by surprise.

Cage awoke in a flat. The madman, now wearing an executioner costume, explained that these incidents had been tests. He wanted to see if a concerned citizen would dare to stop him, then to see if courage extended to facing guns and not beating up a crippled man, and then to see if it extended to facing actually dangerous weapons.

Such tests were meant to see if New York City was worthy of not being destroyed. The madman had an atomic bomb, and wanted to nuke Manhattan and trigger WWIII. Cage’s heroism nearly convinced him not to do it, but he changed his mind and decided to go along with the original plan.

However, he was distracted by a burglar who was trying to enter his house from the chimney. This gave Cage the few seconds he needed to tackle him and punch him out.


The main illustrations depicts the last costume he wore as he got ready to detonate the atom bomb.


He’s an intense, raving weirdo. He loves to dress in weird outfits and act as outrageous, loud characters. He seemed to ad-lib most of his stuff.

After Cage recognized him, the madman spoke in a weird mix of the personas of his three previous characters. It’s thus not impossible that he presents a case of comic-book multiple personality disorder.

His whole “rationale” was that he preferred an absurdly romanticised past, and hated the present. Hmmm.


(Past) “You are strong, you blackguard — but a member of Her Majesty’s Fifth Northumberland Fusiliers  knows full well how to attack adversity !”

(Present) “Wait ! You hear that ? Enemy comin ! ! Get back or they’ll see us, it’s Charlie  ! He’s all around.”

(Future) “Mugging ? No, companion… this is only a security check. Let me see your identification card and authorization to be on the street.”

Game Stats — DC Heroes RPG

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Christmas Madman

Dex: 05 Str: 05 Bod: 05 Motivation: Psychopath
Int: 05 Wil: 05 Min: 04 Occupation: Crazy
Inf: 05 Aur: 03 Spi: 03 Resources {or Wealth}: 004
Init: 015 HP: 020

Artist (Actor, tailor): 05, Weaponry (Firearms): 04

Familiarity (Quick change artist/disguise).


SPI (he’s bonkers).

The madman could apparently easily procure equipment, including comic-book-advanced gear. During the Christmas night he had, in his various identities :

  • A stout cane [BODY 04, EV 03].
  • What was probably meant to be a M3 Grease Gun SMG [BODY 04, Projectile weapons: 05, Ammo: 07, R#3, Advantage: Autofire].
  • A “laser pistol”, which was never fired, but probably was genuine since he also had at least one WRIST LASER [BODY 03, Laser beam: 05].
  • He also had… something disguised as a brass bell that knocked Cage out with a sucker blow to the head. I have no idea of what it could be or how he did it. A shaped sonic charge, maybe ?

Game Stats — DC Adventures RPG

Tell me more about the game stats

“Christmas Madman” — Averaged PL6.2

04 03 01 01 04 02 01 02


Quick-change artistry ● 1 point ● Descriptor: Skill
– Quickness 2 (Limited 2 to donning and doffing clothing and disguises).

Combat Advantages

Close Attack 3, Defensive Roll 2, Improved critical (Surprise attack) 2, Power Attack, Ranged Attack 3, Takedown.

Other Advantages

Equipment 3, Fascinate (Deception).


Athletics 3 (+7), Deception 4 (+6), Expertise (Costuming and disguise) 5 (+7), Insight 2 (+3), Perception 4 (+5), Ranged combat (Firearms) 1 (+5).


The equipment pool varies by identity :
Stout cane Strength-based blunt Damage 2 ● 2 points
Submachinegun Ranged ballistic Multiattack Damage 4 ● 12 points
Wrist laser Ranged laser Damage 4 ● 8 points (also had a laser pistol, but it wasn’t fired)
He also had… something disguised as a brass bell that knocked Cage out with a sucker blow to the head. I have no idea of what it could be or how he did it. A shaped sonic charge, maybe ?


Initiative +1
Unarmed +7, Close, Damage 4
Firearms +5, Ranged, Damage by type


Dodge 08 Fortitude 07
Parry 08 Toughness 03*/05
Will 03

* Without Defensive Roll


  • Handicap He’s majorly cuckoo for Cocoa Puffs, so the story doesn’t have to make sense.

Powers Levels

  • Trade-off areas. Attack/Effect PL 6, Dodge/Toughness PL 7, Parry/Toughness PL 7, Fort/Will PL 5.
  • Points total 80. Abilities 36, Defences 17, Skills 10, Powers 1, Devices 0, Advantages 16. Equiv. PL 6.

By Sébastien Andrivet.

Source of Character: Luke Cage Hero for Hire #7.

Helper(s): Roy Cowan, Ethan Roe.