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Sleepwalker of the Brotherhood of Dada (Doom Patrol)

Sleepwalker


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

Context

Sleepwalker was one of the notable characters during the early run of Grant Morrison on DC Comics’ Doom patrol, during the 1990s. She has the absurd power of being super-strong, but only whilst asleep.

Since I was such a big fan of this run, she got an entry early in the project that would eventually become writeups.org.


Background

  • Real Name: Holly McKenzie.
  • Marital Status: Unrevealed.
  • Known Relatives: None.
  • Group Affiliation: Brotherhood of dada I.
  • Base Of Operations: Mobile.
  • Height: About 5’9” Weight: About 140 lbs.
  • Eyes: Light blue Hair: Black


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Powers and Abilities

McKenzie is a rough grrl, who possesses formidable superhuman strength when asleep. While sleepwalking, she has been witnessed casually ripping off extremely thick bank vault doors, or taking Robotman apart with a few punches and kicks. She can also perform superhuman jumps in a vaguely Matrix-like style.

To stay sharp and asleep, she has a walkman cassette player where she pops Barry Manilow  tapes. She presumably switched to an iPod some years later. And, of course, takes a few sleeping pills before going into action.

Sleepwalker has preternaturally sensitive dreams, very much like the Awareness power. Before the Brotherhood of dada launched the Painting That Ate Paris operation, she kept having dreams about the Fifth Horseman of the Apocalypse, a terribly powerful entity that had been trapped in the Painting. The Horseman came free a few hours after the Brotherhood “activated” the Painting.


History

McKenzie is a young British woman who was recruited by Mister Nobody, the illuminated surrealist activist and madman. She thus joined the first Brotherhood of dada.

The Brotherhood had a plan – to recover a weird painting evoked in lost works by Thomas DeQuincey, a work of art that supposedly ate people. This tableau, by the mad Italian painter Piranesi, had been destroyed in 1814. But a duplicate had been done, which was ultimately recovered by Horst Eismann, the collector of the strange.

The Brotherhood of dada stormed Eismann’s retreat in the French Alps, and absconded with the painting. They then went to Paris, and Mister Nobody used it there for a reality inversion. Paris was plunged into the dimension of the painting, and the Brotherhood of dada along with it.

The Doom Patrol intervened and broke the phenomenon, restoring Paris. But much of the Brotherhood of dada, including Sleepwalker, elected to stay in the Painting. Therein was a dimension  themed after art schools. The freaks, forever rejected on Earth, had found a world that could accept them and which they could enjoy.

Sleepwalker has not been seen since. She likely still lives within the Painting.


Description

Yes, those are actually miniature beds on her shoulders – probably the coolest 1990s comics shoulderpads. One assumes that she tucks them before going into action.

While “powered up” Holly is quite obviously a sleepwalker. Her head sways to the side, her step is slightly shambling and her breathing deep and regular. Most opponents have a hard time determining whether she is a threat before she starts stompin’ and punchin’.


Personality

Your basic kev, aggressive and ignorant. On the other hand, she has a genuine appreciation for the arts and the creative process.

Of course, most encounters with Sleepwalker will happen while she’s asleep. Which reduces her personality somewhat.


Quotes

“So what’s this DeQuincey bloke gotta do with us, then ?”


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Game Stats — DC Heroes RPG Print Friendly

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Sleepwalker

Dex: 06 Str: 15 Bod: 09 Motivation: Rebel
Int: 03 Wil: 03 Min: 06 Occupation: Absurdist
Inf: 03 Aur: 02 Spi: 06 Resources {or Wealth}: N.A.
Init: 014 HP: 035

Powers:
Awareness: 05, Jumping: 02

Skills:
None demonstrated.

Advantages:
None demonstarted.

Connections:
Brotherhood of dada (Low).

Drawbacks:
Power Loss (while awake all Physical Attributes and Resistance Attributes become a 03, all Powers drop to 00), Misc.: Asleep (see below).

Equipment:

  • STEEL-CAPPED BOOTS [BODY 06, Enhance (EV): 01 (cap is 04), Descriptor: Bludgeon].
  • Walkman [BODY 01, Hypnosis: 07. Limitations: Hypnosis has No Range and can only be used to project a relaxed, resting user into a deep slumber. Attempts at waking Sleepwalker are rolled against the APs of Hypnosis of the Walkman].

Asleep at the wheel

Though Holly’s power is absurd, she also acts with purpose and precision while asleep. She can follow broad orders and have some initiative. “Find and kick Robotman’s butt” or “follow the plan that was explained to you before you slept” didn’t pose any problems.

Sleepwalker, while asleep, can be considered as an awake person following broad post-hypnotic orders.

Still, being asleep on the job presents two limitations :

  • Her sleeping mind is sluggish. It doesn’t react quickly to unexpected events. Her Initiative is thus a 0 whenever something not covered by the plan or her instructions occur, unless an ally give her orders at an higher Initiative (in which case she’ll act immediately).
  • Holly doesn’t talk while sleeping. She doesn’t seem to snore or mumble, either. This is roughly a SPR valuable half the time, and thus a 13 pts Drawback.

By Sébastien Andrivet based on Mayfair.

Source of Character: Doom Patrol #26-28.

Helper(s): John Colagioia.

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