Christopher Priest, formerly Jim Owsley, is a (retired) comic book writer. He's famous mostly for things that have very little to do with his comics (namely, his race and various inter-office pissing contests), which is a shame, because as far as the people who read his work are concerned, he may have been one of the very best the industry ever saw.

His most famous works were ComicBook/{{Quantum And Woody}} (about two dysfunctional best friends turned superheroes), [[ComicBook/LukeCageHeroForHire Power Man]] And ComicBook/IronFist (about two dysfunctional superheroes turned best friends), ComicBook/TheRay (which was ''ComicBook/{{Invincible}}'' ten years before Invincible, only with lots more TimeTravel and [[ThePlan Gambitting]]), and perhaps most famously, his ComicBook/BlackPanther relaunch, considered by many (if not most) fans to be the definitive take on Panther, and is largely credited with legitimizing the character beyond being "that black guy in the back of the Avengers team photos".

He also worked on ''ComicBook/{{Deadpool}}'', ''ComicBook/{{Steel}}'', ''ComicBook/JusticeLeagueTaskForce'', and other, less popular/successful characters and teams (including his doomed-from-the-starting-gate epic, ''Comicbook/TheCrew''.) He never really got a crack at writing Franchise/{{Batman}}, Franchise/{{Superman}}, or any other A-list character. Reports of how bitter (or not) he was over this vary. While a lot of his fans like to claim racism is responsible, Priest himself has always taken the high road, focusing more on just exactly how difficult it is to truly break through in the industry, particularly if your first or second project isn't an enormous success, and the tendency of DC and Marvel to give their flagship books to flagship talent.

He was a notorious victim and/or perpetrator of ExecutiveMeddling.

His work is known for non-linear storytelling, snark, meta-commentary, snark, deconstruction of the genre, snark, subtlety, snark, verbosity, snark, pith, snark, character driven plots, and snark. Or, if you prefer, AnachronicOrder, WorldOfSnark, LampshadeHanging, LeaningOnTheFourthWall, SarcasmMode, DeconstructiveParody, TheSnarkKnigh}, GettingCrapPastTheRadar, VitriolicBest Buds, WallOfText, DeadpanSnarker, WhamLine, SnarkToSnarkCombat, CharacterDevelopment, and BetterThanABareBulb.

The absolute king of the {{Beat Panel}}.

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!!Tropes associated with Christopher Priest:

* AffablyEvil: A lot of Panther's foes fall into this, as does Vandal Savage.
* AffirmativeActionLegacy: Played straight occasionally, but mostly played with. For example, (white) [[ButtMonkey Everett K.Ross]] is forced to briefly assume the mantle of the Black Panther.
* AllThereInTheManual: His website functions as this for a lot of his work that was either unfinished or changed on account of ExecutiveMeddling.
* AffectionateParody: QuantumAndWoody is this to superhero comics in general.
* AlternateCompanyEquivalent: Marvel's Sentry is basically Triumph, minus all the flaws and conflicts that make Triumph interesting. This was apparently an improvement,as Sentry was a much, MUCH more popular character than Triumph.
* AngryBlackMan: Almost all of his works go to great lengths to avoid this, and it's frequently subverted, averted, and deconstructed. In the case of [[ComicBook/QuantumAndWoody Quantum]], it's averted, subverted, double-subverted, deconstructed, and then just generally beaten to death and fed to a goat.
* AntiVillain: About half of Panther's rogues gallery. Also Vandal Savage.
* BashBrothers: Power Man and Iron Fist. To a lesser extent, Triumph and Ray or Quantum and Woody.
** Panther's Dora Milage are Bash Sisters.
* BatmanGambit: Villains like to try this on Panther. It never, ever works. Triumph likes to try this on bad guys. It works occasionally.
* BeatPanel: Arguably the TropeCodifier for modern comics.
* BecauseDestinySaysSo: Used a lot to manipulate Ray but never actually true.
* BewareTheNiceOnes: Lobo learns this the hard way with Ray.
* BlackBestFriend: Played with a lot in QuantumAndWoody, as Quantum is so ridiculously straight-laced and suburban that people are usually shocked to find out he's black under his costume.
* BetterThanABareBulb: Constantly, especially in ''ComicBook/QuantumAndWoody'', ''SelfDemonstrating/{{Deadpool}}'', and ''ComicBook/BlackPanther''.
* BettyAndVeronica: Done in TheRay, with Jenny as Betty and Black Canary as Veronica.
** And again in Panther, with Monica Lynne as the Betty and Storm as the Veronica.
** Came up a second time in Ray, with Jazz as the Betty and Gaelon as the Veronica.
** Gender flipped in QuantumAndWoody. Quantum was Betty, Woody was Veronica, and Amy Fishbein was Archie.
* BreakingTheFourthWall: SelfDemonstrating/{{Deadpool}}, even moreso than usual. To elaborate, in his first Deadpool story, Deadpool is admitted to a retirement community, in which all the other residents are the protagonists of other Priest titles which had been cancelled. They assure Deadpool that he'll be cancelled as well. Priest's run ends with Deadpool murdering Priest and throwing his body in a tar pit, accompanied by the cheers of all of Priest's old characters.
** The same run also included repeated references by both Deadpool and Loki along the lines of "None of this is really happening... there is a man... with a typerwriter."
* BreakingSpeech: Death Masque loves give these, but they come off kind of forced. Vandal Savage, on the other hand, is a pro.
* BrickJoke: Occasionally.
* BoringInvincibleHero: Priest gave Ray a really, really versatile and diverse power set, and avoided this problem by giving Ray problems that couldn't just be solved with a fight scene, and focusing on his inexperience and doubts. Part of the reason other writers very rarely use Ray, or conveniently forget half his powers, is because he's no longer inexperienced and it's hard to consistently come up with problems that can challenge somebody at Ray's power level.
** To elaborate: there's an alternate future where Ray turns kind of evil and ends up killing all of the other superheroes except Triumph and The Flash.
** For those wondering, Ray, essentially, has the combined powers of ComicBook/GreenLantern, ComicBook/TheFlash, ComicBook/{{Wolverine}}, ComicBook/CaptainAtom, and Comicbook/TheAtom, with a side order of illusion casting, invisibility, teleportation, and intangibility.
** Ray's complete control of light in all its forms is the reason he, basically, doesn't exist whenever there's a major GreenLantern-related problem. He can literally defeat all seven corps by himself without breaking a sweat.
*** Somebody finally realized this late in ComicBook/BlackestNight, where Ray single-handedly destroyed a whole bunch of Black Lanterns (which had otherwise been shown to be invincible to everything except the combined powers of other lanterns).
* ButtMonkey: Triumph. Love him or hate him, the guy gets screwed over more than just about anybody else in comics.
** To elaborate: Would have been, basically, what Superman became (Earth's most famous/recognized hero), only his first mission (during which he founded the JLA) went wrong and he was kicked out of the timestream. Ten years later, he comes back, having missed ten years of his life and relationships, only nobody remembers him. His old teammates are Earth's mightiest heroes, while he's relegated to, essentially, the training team. Then he gets his back broken. Then, tired of having his authority challenged, his team leader (and former subordinate), Martian Manhunter, beats him to within an inch of his life and fires him from the team, effectively isolating him from his only friends in the world (Ray and Gypsy, whom he essentially considered family). Then the Devil shows up. THEN Triumph swallows his pride, and apologizes to J'onn, who still won't let him back on the team. Triumph is about to sell his soul, but Ray and Gypsy show up, tell him how much they care about him, and it looks like a happy ending... until Ray accidentally sells Triumph's soul, which has the side effect of removing his powers and erasing him from history AGAIN.
** Later writers made it even worse, particularly Creator/GrantMorrison, who implied that an unseen adventure into the microverse left Triumph with permanently reduced... powers.
* CallingTheOldManOut: Poor Ray has to do this every other issue or so. It's rarely effective.
** Woody ''tries'' to do this to his father, but it doesn't quite work.
* CharacterDevelopment: Turned Black Panther from the token black guy in the Avengers into, basically, Marvel's Batman, only smarter and cooler. And he did it without messing with continuity or throwing established character under the bus.
** Triumph's journey was fascinating, and ultimately turned him into a very deep and relatable (still flawed) character...but the fans had labeled him TheScrappy long before that.
* CompanionCube: Achebe's hand-puppet, Daki. Woody's guitar.
* TheCowl: A running theme in Priest's work is that it's basically impossible to actually be this. Quantum tries, but can't quite pull it off. Panther seems to, but deep down is one of the most caring and compassionate men on the planet.
* DeathByOriginStory: Occasionally, most famously with Quantum and Woody's fathers. Memorably played with and eventually averted in ''ComicBook/TheRay''.
* DieForOurShip: Malice attempts to enact this in-universe.
* DieHardOnAnX: Priest pitched, described, and wrote his Deadpool run as "''Series/{{Seinfeld}}'' with supervillains".
* DroppedABridgeOnHim: Happened to [[spoiler: Mystek]], as Priest didn't want other writers screwing up the character's backstory.
* TheDulcineaEffect: Quantum has this bad for Amy Fishbein. Ray has it for Black Canary. Kasper has it for Okoye. You get the idea.
* ExactlyWhatItSaysOnTheTin: The story "Ray gets shot in the head."
* ExecutiveMeddling: Oh my yes. On pretty much everything he worked on, but ESPECIALLY at DC. He's also been on the Executive side of this trope, and he'd be the first to admit he was occasionally as guilty of this as anyone.
* FemmeFatale: Malice. Tempest (the one from Ray, not the one from Quantum And Woody). Malice. Titania (spoiler: actually Copycat). Malice. Fang. Malice. Have we mentioned Malice yet?
* FirstPersonPeripheralNarrator: Everett K. Ross is the narrator for most of the ''ComicBook/BlackPanther'' works, which have superhero Black Panther as the main character.
* FirstPersonSmartass: Ross from ''ComicBook/BlackPanther''.
* FiveManBand: ''ComicBook/JusticeLeagueTaskForce''
** TheLeader: Martian Manhunter
** TheLancer: Triumph
** TheSmartGuy: L'ron (also a subversion, as he's physically the biggest and strongest... only Triumph/Ray/J'onn all have powers that make them more powerful than him overall)
** TheBigGuy: Ray, who has the highest power level on a VERY powerful team.
** TheChick: Gypsy
** TheSixthRanger: Mystek
* FreakyFridayFlip: Happens in both ''ComicBook/QuantumAndWoody'' and ''ComicBook/BlackPanther''.
* GambitPileup:
** Most ''ComicBook/BlackPanther'' stories, and a lot of the ''ComicBook/JusticeLeagueTaskForce'' stuff. Quantum usually thinks this is going on, but he's never right.
** ''ComicBook/TheCrew'' has a decently epic one, as well, although we never really get to see it play all the way out on account of the book being too good to last.
* GenreSavvy: Everett K. Ross, Woody, and Deadpool are all pros. Ray eventually gets pretty good at it. Savage is a master.
* GettingCrapPastTheRadar: Successfully published a Justice League story in which Franchise/WonderWoman gives ComicBook/{{Aquaman}} a BJ. The kicker? The last line of the scene is Aquaman muttering "[[HoYay I wish they'd sent J'onn]]". Nobody has ever topped that one at Marvel or DC.
* HappyDance: Ray does a memorable impersonation of James Brown, accompanied by hard-light constructs to facilitate Browns' "cloak" bit, across the Washington skyline after bedding Black Canary.
* HesBack: As of 2013, Priest is back for a "ComicBook/QuantumAndWoody" miniseries.
* HopeSpot: Ray gets one of these every once in a while. [[CrapsackWorld They never last]].
* JerkAss: Loads, but ESPECIALLY Triumph. Woody also qualifies (but mostly only to Quantum).
* KnightInSourArmor: Triumph eventually ends up as one of these. It's played with a bit, as his cynicism and snark sometimes alienates him from other heroes, to the extent of making them less effective as a team.
* LampshadeHanging: Often, in everything, but especially in ''ComicBook/BlackPanther'' and ''ComicBook/QuantumAndWoody''.
* LawfulStupid: What Ross thinks of Wakandan customs and tribal laws that let things like Killmonger becoming Black Panther happen.
* LegacyCharacter: Ray, Kasper Cole (for two different legacies), Steel (kinda), the second Woody, Killmonger (kinda).
* LetsYouAndHimFight: Uses this one a lot, particularly in ''ComicBook/BlackPanther'' and ''ComicBook/TheRay''. Ray is particularly guilty of it, as the first issue of his second series ends with him killing Superboy.
* ManipulativeBastard: Oh boy. ComicBook/BlackPanther, Triumph, Vandal Savage, White Wolf, Achebe, Killmonger, Happy Terrill, Neron, Woody (but only to Quantum), ComicBook/WarMachine, Triage, Blackjack, Death Masque, Loki...
* MightyWhitey: Subverted masterfully to create the Panther villain White Wolf.
* MistakenForGay: [[ComicBook/QuantumAndWoody "We're not a couple!"]]
* NamesTheSame: This Christopher Priest is not the same person as [[Creator/ChristopherPriestNovelist the British novelist]] who wrote ''Film/ThePrestige''. It's partly to avoid confusion on this score that Owsley/Priest billed himself simply as "Priest" on some later works.
* NobleDemon: Much of the drama in later issues of TheRay comes from the question of whether Vandal Savage is this, pure evil, or an AntiVillain. [[spoiler: All of the above.]]
* NoHoldsBarredBeatDown: Triumph takes one so severe that it breaks his back. Kasper Cole takes on from Killmonger.
* ObstructiveBureaucrat: Henry Peter Gyrich is the Government, Mister!
* TheOnlyOneAllowedToDefeatYou: Death Masque to Ray, White Wolf to Black Panther, Killmonger to Black Panther, Man-Ape to Black Panther...
* PhlebotinumOverload: A constant concern in ''ComicBook/QuantumAndWoody''. Comes up occasionally in ''ComicBook/TheRay'' as well.
* ThePlan: Black Panther and most his enemies ''LOVE'' these. Vandal Savage in his DC work is as good as anybody. Triumph (from ''Justice League Task Force''), ''thinks'' he's good at these, and he's right... sometimes.
* PutOnABus: At one point, Queen Divine Justice literally puts ComicBook/TheIncredibleHulk on a bus to get him out of the story.
* RememberTheNewGuy: Triumph's whole character concept is this, only nobody remembers him... but they should.
* RunningGag: Constantly.
** We're not a couple!
** Master Planner/Tuna Sandwhich.
** I was assigned to watch the Black Panther for four days.Four days. That was X years ago.
** There is a man... with a typewriter.
* ScrewDestiny: Queen Divine Justice tries, and fails, to get out of her role as a member of the Dora Milaje.
* ShutUpHannibal: Ray finds himself having to do this a lot.
* StableTimeLoop: Ray is responsible for his own father's becoming a superhero and passing his powers on to his son. There's another, more complicated one involving Gaelon as well.
* StalkerWithACrush: Galleon to Ray... because she's his girlfriend from the future, come back in time to make sure he doesn't turn into an evil jerk.
** Quantum to Amy Fishbein.
* StatusQuoIsGod: Priest went out of his way to avert this whenever possible, whether he was changing the origin of the Justice League, or killing off his own main characters. Or making one of them look like Tom Cruise against his will.
* StealthParody: Did it to himself, scripting a ''ComicBook/QuantumAndWoody'' story that spoofed ''ComicBook/BlackPanther''.
* StrangledByTheRedString: This seems to be about to happen to Ray and Gaelon (in-universe) thanks to Gaelon messing around with time travel, but the book got cancelled before the plot could be resolved, so we don't know.
* TakeThatMe: Woody at one point reads, and eviscerates, an issue of ''ComicBook/BlackPanther''.
* TechnoBabble: Constantly, especially in books involving Triumph, Ray, or Black Panther.
* TheCallKnowsWhereYouLive: Priest LOVES this trope.
** In TheCrew, the Call knows where you live, and will show up there with a couple of dangerous renegade superheroes in tow.
** In ''ComicBook/BlackPanther'', the Call dresses up in a kitty suit and runs the most powerful country in the world. And will come and get you, even if you get reassigned to Antartica. Even if you'd rather stay in Antartica.
*** It was a really hard decision.
** In ''ComicBook/TheRay'', the Call knows where you live, and will lie to you about who you are, who your parents are, and which parents (fake or otherwise) are dead or alive. Also, there is another Call who not only knows where you live, but will threaten and/or murder your loved ones until you answer it. And that Call is [[TheCallsAreComingFromInsideTheHouse coming from inside the house]].
** In ''ComicBook/QuantumAndWoody'', the Call will force you to live within 12 hours of the person who annoys you most in the world, or else you die.
* TimeyWimeyBall: Both ''ComicBook/The Ray'' and ''ComicBook/BlackPanther'' had a lot of super-complicated time travel that ''mostly'' makes sense. Mostly.
** There IS a letter that never gets written in Ray. It's given to him by Gaelon in the future, then he delivers it to her in the present, then she delivers it to him in the future, etc. It's even explicitly stated that it's in his handwriting.
** Triumph's relationship to time and paradoxes is just an unholy mess altogether, and it only got worse after Priest stopped writing him. Eventually, somebody wrote a story that pretty much said "Time and Triumph don't get along, and his continuity is pretty much fluid because of it." Weirdly, they bothered to do this about ten years after he stopped appearing in anything.
* VitriolicBestBuds: ComicBook/PowerManAndIronFist, ComicBook/CaptainAmerica & ComicBook/TheFalcon, ComicBook/QuantumAndWoody, Quantum and the other Woody, Ray and Triumph, SelfDemonstrating/{{Deadpool}} and Constrictor... Priest likes this trope.
* WholePlotReference: There's an AMAZING Justice League Task Force story that does this with {{Dracula}} of all things.
* WretchedHive: Little Mogadishu, from TheCrew.
** Ray visits one in outerspace. Lobo's in the bar. Cue LetsYouAndHimFight.
* WrongGenreSavvy: Quantum, almost constantly. Triumph, even more often than that.
** Ray's whole character is basically this, as he was locked in his apartment for the first eighteen years of his life, and just about everything he knows about the world he learned from watching TV.
* WellDoneSonGuy: In ''ComicBook/TheRay''.
* WhatMightHaveBeen: Christopher Priest was in the running to helm the JLA relaunch before it went to Creator/GrantMorrison.
** This can be extended to Priest's whole career... had he burned one fewer bridge, or stayed in the industry one more year, or had one more artist that "got" him, he might be talked about in the same breath as Morrison, Moore, etc... instead, he's "that black guy who wrote Panther". Priest's never-realized run on a mainstream Justice League title might have been fantastic... his Martian Manhunter is often regarded as one of the best takes on the character, and pretty much everyone agrees that he did great things in his limited opportunities with Batman, Aquaman, etc.
* WhatYouAreInTheDark: Neron likes to pull this. It ALMOST works on Triumph.
* WoobieDestroyerOfWorlds: Happens occasionally in Priest works. This possibility is brought up repeatedly with regards to Triumph, though it never reaches fruition under Priest. GrantMorrison eventually picked up the plot thread, though.
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