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The League: Murray Group and Associates (From Late 19th Century onwards)
The Team in General
"The British Empire has always encountered difficulties in distinguishing between its heroes and its monsters."
— Campion Bond
The protagonists of the first two volumes, and the most iconic League. The leaders of this league, Mina Murray and Allan Quatermain play an active role in shaping the League's activities of the 20th Century as well, working with associates like Orlando, Thomas Carnacki, A. J. Raffles, Andrew Norton, Janni Dakkar and Galley-Wag.
- Anti-Hero: Each one of them, to varying degrees.
- Dysfunction Junction: Practically everybody in each incarnation of the team has issues that frequently put them at odds with their teammates. Considering that all of them are characters from wildly different stories by authors in different styles, it would be surprising if it were any other way.
- Faking the Dead: Everyone save Mina, since they're supposed to have died in their original stories. In universe, Mina and Allan are disturbed at the implication of a government agency so comfortable with this kind of subterfuge. This is taken to the levels of faking the death of Moriarty at the expense of Sherlock Holmes who survived by chance.
- Five-Man Band: Mina Murray is the established Leader, Allan Quatermain is her Lancer, Nemo is The Smart Guy, Hyde The Big Guy (while Jekyll has some elements of The Heart) and Griffin doubles as The Chick and the Token Evil Teammate.
- Landmarking the Hidden Base: For most of their history, they had a separate hidden quarter in the British Museum.
- Precursor Heroes: When M in Vol. 1 compiles the League he states that it's been done before. The backstory expands on the adventures of the first League founded by England by Queen Gloriananote and was led by Prospero, a second league in the 18th Century was led by Lemuel Gulliver. Keepsakes and paintings of their adventures is on display in their headquarters.
- Psycho for Hire: The original league includes both heroes like Mina Murray and Allan Quatermain and characters who are villainous like Hawley Griffin, Edward Hyde (the "good" Dr. Jekyll is hired mostly for the uses of his Superpowered Alter Ego) and Jules Verne's Anti-Hero Noble Demon Captain Nemo would certainly be considered a terrorist today. Even the "good" guys like Allan Quatermain is a Mighty Whitey imperialist from the modern perspective.
- Public Domain Characters
- Teeth-Clenched Teamwork: Initially. Especially the Anti-English Nemo, who serves alongside imperialist adventurer Allan Quatermain. But for the most part, the team get on better with each other than they do with their handlers MI-6.
"Thankfully, my former husband's feelings are no longer my concern."
The matriarch of the league, Mina is a mysterious woman with "a past" involving a certain foreigner. She's the recurring leader of the league on all three volumes and The Black Dossier.
- Action Girl / Action Survivor: Smacks "Jimmy" in the face with her purse (which contains a brick) when he tries to put the moves on her. She doesn't fare as well against Emma Peel in The Black Dossier, who judo flips Mina then kicks her in the face, and is savagely beaten by Griffen in Volume 2. In general, as a leader she doesn't get involved with violence and killing but rather leads by temperament, intelligence and initiative, showing a gift at organization and management.
- Ascended Fangirl: Of Allan. She's immediately disappointed but later recovers her crush when Allan gets his act together. They become lovers in Vol 2.
- Badass Normal: A music teacher leading four living legends.
- Empowered Badass Normal: After dipping in the pool of immortality in Kor, she and Allan Quatermain become functionally immortal.
- Bi the Way
- Closer to Earth: She's probably the closest thing the League has to an Only Sane Man. The supplemental stories, even the ones set in space, keep reminding us that she's a music teacher
- Deadpan Snarker
- Vampire Bites Suck: "Not quite the two discreet puncture marks of legend, are they?"
- Heroic B.S.O.D.: After Century 1969.
- Ice Queen: Towards Allan Quatermain and the rest of the League at first. Justified as from her view, she's a middle class divorced woman who is asked by the government to associate with criminals and deviants, including an unashamed sex offender like the Invisible Man.
- Immortality: In Century.
- May–December Romance: With Allan, who is quite obviously a generation older than her.
- Sympathy for the Devil: She tends to feel sorry for monsters like Edward Hyde. She also reveals that she felt this way for Dracula, that she did feel attracted to him and feels guilty for his death. The guilt is so bad that she hallucinates the Count in bat form accusing her in 1969, nearly 80 years after the incident.
- Totally Radical: Allan and Orlando makes fun of her attempts to fit in the 60s. Although for her part, she was trying to fit in to her times after several decades of speaking in increasingly Antiquated Linguistics. In earlier times, a lot of contemporary figures she meets, including Sal Paradise from Jack Kerouac's On the Road note that there is something old fashioned about her.
- Trauma Conga Line: She endures this a lot but she also survives and heals from it far better than the rest of the league.
Source: The works of H. Rider Haggard.
"Only my demise was a sham, a ruse to grant me freedom from my suffocating reputation."
Once a national hero, now an elderly drug addict, adventurer and explorer Allan Quatermain finds new purpose in the Murray Group.
- The Ace / Broken Ace: A recurring problem with him.
- Badass Decay: He periodically undergoes this, being dependent on drugs and increasingly reliant on Mina.
- BFG: His elephant gun.
- Deconstructed Character Archetype: Of the Action Hero character in modern fiction. His primary function in battle is to shoot down things with a gun which along with thinking with his feet is his main skill. This leads to problems because he needs a big adventure to be a hero and without one he's a drug addict who relies heavily on Mina.
- Great White Hunter
- Heroic Sacrifice: Against the Antichrist in Century 2009.
- Immortality: In Century.
- The Lancer
- Last of His Kind: His death at the end of Century 3. His passing marks the end of the heroic male character who represented real virtues, rather than the false ones of James Bond and Harry Potter, who have become the popular adventure heroes of modern times.
- The Load: His drug addiction is a constant problem and he relapses badly after Century Vol 2 when Mina disappears after the Hyde Park concert.
- Losing the Team Spirit: At the end of Century 2 and Century 3, he has given up the league becoming a homeless addict. Even meeting Mina again doesn't convince him to come back. He does pull a Big Damn Heroes though but he dies.
- May–December Romance: Noticeably much older than Mina. Until he rejuvenates from the Fountain of Youth.
- Mighty Whitey: One of the archetypes for this kind of character though Moore noted that the original contained a lot of Unbuilt Trope which he brings back in this book.
- Politically Incorrect Hero: Initially he is this. But he loses that during his collaboration with Captain Nemo, becoming less of a colonialist hero than before, even criticizing England's role in the Mahdi crisis.
- Pretender Diss: He's on both ends of this. When facing Professor Moriarty at the end of Vol. 1, he is told that Sherlock Holmes thought him "a weakling" and that he's a poor successor as England's most beloved public hero compared to him. In The Black Dossier, Quatermain expresses the same sentiment to James Bond regarding him as a poor successor of the "adventure hero".
"Bond believes we are his pawns. He thinks no-one observes his game. But I am no-one. I observe everything... and to play games with Nemo is to play games with destruction."
A Sikh pirate, and captain of the Nautilus.
- Ax-Crazy: Has his moments. Quatermain comments that he's somehow worse than Hyde.
- Badass Beard
- BFG: His rapid-fire harpoon gun.
- Cool Ship: The Nautilus.
- Defector from Decadence: He is enraged when he learns that the British government killed off the Martians by deploying biological weapons in a city, and quits the team on the spot.
- Enemy Mine: A complex example. He was a revolutionary in the Indian Mutiny of 1857, then a N.G.O. Superpower and Science Hero who terrorized English ships, but becomes part of the League created by the British Empire to combat even greater threats (albeit with Teeth-Clenched Teamwork and barely repressed contempt).
- Go-Karting with Bowser: How he views his collaboration with the English (and how they view theirs with him.)
- Jumped at the Call: In Vol 1, he and Allan briefly bond, and Nemo confesses that the real reason he joined the League was that he was searching for another adventure.
- More Dakka: His rapid fire harpoon gun.
- N.G.O. Superpower: His Lincoln Island commune of Pirates and Renegades combined with his modern submarine make him The Captain of his Private Army. He's an exiled Prince of Bundelkhand and after the Mutiny, he gives up all remaining ties to any nation or ideology though he reserves animosity towards the English because It's Personal.
- Noble Bigot: VERY prejudiced against the English for the understandable reason that he was a former revolutionary during the Indian Mutiny of 1857. He also has biases against Muslims to a lesser extent. Though he flip flops, he admits to admiring English resolve in the face of Martian invasions and comes to respect Mina Murray and Allan Quatermain greatly.
- Noble Demon: A more accurate description of his character. He is not a conventionally good person by any definition but he has a strict code of honor that he does abide by and has many Pet the Dog moments along the way.
- Politically Incorrect Hero: In addition to his aforementioned prejudice against Muslims, he also expresses very misogynistic views, putting him at odds with Mina at first. Although his views are not any worse than that of Victorian Englishmen who are also very condescending to Mina.
- Premortem One Liner:"Come forward! Come forward, men of England! Tell the gods that Nemo sent you!"
- The Smart Guy
- Steampunk: All his technology.
- Token Minority: In accordance with his backstory given in The Mysterious Island, he's Indian. Moore and O'Neil made him a Sikh and gave this version of the Nautilus detailed Indian motifs.
- Also on a wider note, he is the only character outside of English literature to be part of the League, being a character written by Jules Verne (a French author).
- Well-Intentioned Extremist: Though he seems to have grown more pragmatic by the times of the comic.
Dr Henry Edward Jekyll/"Edward Hyde"
"Henry isn't home. I'm Edward."
Since his apparent death, Hyde has evolved from the pale, dwarfish figure described in the original novella, to a massive ape-like creature. Also, he no longer needs his potion to transform. Any stress will do. Basically The Incredible Hulk in Victorian times.
- Ax-Crazy: Hyde is not invariably a murderous lunatic. But when he's in a murdering mood, gore abounds.
- Beast and Beauty: Hyde reveals a crush on Mina in Volume II.
- Berserk Button: He was already planning to kill Griffin for selling out to Alien Invaders, but when he realizes Griffin brutally battered Mina, he makes the man's death hideous and lingering.
- The Big Guy: As Hyde - both literally and in terms of team dynamics. One variation from the source material is that Jekyll has grown ever more miserable and sickly over the years, while Hyde has grown both huge and vigorous.Hyde (with ogrish amusement): You see, without me, Jekyll's got no drives. But without him, I've got no limitations.
- Big Ol' Eyebrows: He's got a hairy, scowling, ape-like face, so his eyebrows are prominent.
- Boisterous Bruiser: A murderous, temperamental example, but he's still the only member of the League who usually regards their adventures as a rollicking good time.
- Cluster F-Bomb/I'll Kill You!: In some moods he's barely verbal.
- Depraved Bisexual: He's attracted to Mina, yet he later rapes Griffin, so he's definitely this. Unless that was Hyde's idea of some perverse karmic justice.
- Depraved Dwarf: In Volume II he reveals that he once was one.
- Extreme Omnivore: Hyde, to the horror of the Martians.
- Gayngst: Jekyll. Naturally, this greatly amuses Hyde.
- Genius Bruiser: The transformation has no impact on intelligence. Hyde may be amoral, but he's eloquent, cultured and quick thinking.
- Heroic Sacrifice: Hyde is no hero, but he does choose to die heroically at the end of Volume II.
- Hulking Out: Jekyll is terrified of the transformation, which no longer requires a triggering formula - just elevated stress.
- Jekyll & Hyde: Obviously and a major deconstruction of the same. Notably where Hyde is initially The Brute and Jekyll is a nervous Adorkable doctor, as time goes on Hyde proves to be very intelligent and articulate in his own right, showing his strength and development.
- Kick the Son of a Bitch: Normally, beating and raping someone to death is a huge Moral Event Horizon, but considering the victim is Ax-Crazy serial rapist Griffith, this trope applies instead.
- Poke the Poodle: Jekyll's "crimes" prior to Hyde's release, according to the later.
- Put on a Bus: Jekyll disappears entirely at the beginning of Volume 2. Hyde states that he refuses to submerge again due to fearing that Jekyll will get himself, and Hyde along with him, killed by the invading Martians. It becomes a moot point after Hyde's sacrifice.
- "The Reason You Suck" Speech: Hyde gives an epic one to...Jekyll. Noting that the good doctor created him by his sexual repression and denial of his desires until he became such a milquetoast that he couldn't function without Hyde. Unusual in that the doctor isn't around to hear it, and the speech is directed at Nemo as a sort of Motive Rant.
- Sex Is Evil and I Am Horny: Jekyll's great problem which led to the creation of Hyde.
- Shrinking Violet: Jekyll. It takes great efforts to get him sufficiently angry to release Hyde.
- Split-Personality Takeover: Hyde refuses to 'let Jekyll out' at all during the Martian invasion.
- Spotlight-Stealing Squad: Volume II focuses on Hyde, while Jekyll only appears in the first few pages, though this is justified since his arc deconstructs the Jekyll-Hyde story by asserting that Hyde is not a separate person from Jekyll, but the very same man and that it is Jekyll who enables Hyde and not the other way around.
- Superpowered Evil Side: Hyde is way stronger than any human and has keener senses, including thermal vision. Incidentally, this means he can "see" Griffin.
- The Unfettered / The Fettered: Hyde gives a Character Filibuster explaining the relationship between the two extremes and how the creation of the same and repression leads to the Unfettered being stronger in the long run.
- You Wouldn't Like Me When I'm Angry: In fact, odds are good that you won't like me in any mood.
Hawley Griffin/The Invisible Man
"The only empire I'm interested in is my own: The Empire of Invisible Man the First."
- Adaptational Villainy: Griffin was nowhere near a paragon of virtue in the original book, but this incarnation commits far more heinous atrocities than his literary counterpart ever did.
- Adaptation Name Change: The original book only named him Griffin. "Hawley" is a reference to turn-of-the-century murderer Hawley Crippen.
- Asshole Victim: He is raped and killed by Hyde in Volume II, and we apologize very much for the fact that in this case the trope name can also be taken literally.
- Annoying Laugh/Verbal Tic: Aheheh. Useful, otherwise the reader wouldn't know he's here.
- Ax-Crazy: Favors assault over actual murder, presumably because the terror of living victims feeds his ego.
- Combat Pragmatist: Always strikes first often without justification.
- Deadpan Snarker: Understandably, he's the one person not afraid to say exactly what he thinks to the likes of Captain Nemo or Mister Hyde.
- Evil Albino: Subverted. The albino in Wells' story was his test experiment.
- Giggling Villain: See Annoying Laugh.
- Invisible Jerkass: As an adaptation of the Trope Codifier, you'd expect this.
- Invisible Streaker: His Required Secondary Powers do not include invisibility for his clothes, so he tends to go naked.
- It's All About Me: Considers anyone on Earth disposable. This leads to a conflict of interest in Volume II.
- Kick the Dog: Repeatedly.
- Mad Scientist: In his backstory. Within the series there are far more reliable scientists available to the League.
- Misanthrope Supreme: Humans exist for him to molest, ambush or torment when he pleases.
- The Mole: He spies for the Martians in Volume II.
- The Sneaky Guy: Griffin's M.O. seems to be recon then make a bloody exit.
- The Sociopath: As the quote suggests, he has little empathy for tohers.
- Stupid Evil: In stark contrast to Hyde, he doesn't fully think the consequences of his misdeeds through.
- Token Evil Teammate: Quite a feat, given his teammate include Nemo and Hyde.
- Source: Virginia Woolf's Orlando: A Biography but also Roland from the "Song of Roland" and other similar legends.
Orlando first appeared in The Black Dossier which had a lengthy biography of some of his exploits during his long life of 3000 years. Functionally immortal and capable of changing his sex from male and female, Orlando became part of The Trio that formed the 20th Century League in Vol 3: Century.
- Attention Deficit... Ooh, Shiny!: He's prone to going off tangent on current situations by citing some famous event and personality he witnessed and met in person, which irks Mina and Allan to no end.
- Baleful Polymorph: Spent some time as a Marmalade Cat, a reference to the Orlando and the Marmalade Cat children's books by Kathleen Jane.
- Been There Shaped Literature: He's the son of Tiresias the Blind Prophet and he's met everyone and anyone of consequence in literary and cultural history over 3000 years.
- Bi the Way
- Blood Knight: Orlando is very refined and culturally sophisticated but is also very good at war, having fought in major conflicts from The Trojan War in The Iliad to Iraq War in the 21st Century.
- Cool Sword: THE Cool Sword, Excalibur, which he filched from King Arthur's corpse after he was killed by Mordred.
- Deconstruction: Orlando is a deconstruction of the immortal The Gump fantasy archetype. Despite living long and seeing and doing much, he isn't necessarily over-advantaged over the likes of younger characters like Prospero or Mina Murray, and even gets a challenge from the likes of Oliver Haddo and the Moonchild. Being immortal has frozen him into the eternal 20s.
- Gender Bender: Like his father Tiresias of Thebes, cursed by the Gods to change his sex for a brief period, Orlando changes his sex from male to female involuntarily. In 2009, he comes back from Iraq and finds herself changed when she undergoes her period.
- The Hedonist: As part of his attempts at keeping his/her immortal life interesting, Orlando has indulged in nearly every sexual act known to man.
- I Have Many Names: His birth name was Bio and he later became Bion, then Vita, Vito and eventually Roland before swearing to remain "Orlando for all my days."
- Living Forever Is Awesome: (S)he proudly holds this belief. Cracks are beginning to show by the 20th century however.
- Shell-Shocked Veteran: Becomes this in Century:2009 after going crazy and blindly shooting in a patrol that killed several innocent civilians and comrades. The army thinks it was an act of heroism and he gets a medal but Orlando is appalled at what happened, even more so it happened in the land of Arabian Nights, where Sindbad, his lover had once lived in the Middle Ages.
- Unreliable Narrator: It is difficult to know exactly how much of his exploits are true, as Word of God has stated that Orlando is a compulsive liar.
Prospero, the Duke of Milan
The exiled Duke of Milan was secretly employed by Queen Gloriana and tasked to found the first League. He eventually retires to The Blazing World and serves as an adviser to later iterations of the League.
- The Ace: Orlando, usually full of himself and/or herself, considers Prospero the greatest magician he ever met.
- All There in the Manual: He makes brief on-panel appearances in The Black Dossier and Vol 3. Century but he's a prominent presence in the expanded lore.
- Ascend to a Higher Plane of Existence: What he eventually did, leaving the mortal plane for the Blazing World, an extra-dimensional world where all of fiction becomes ageless and immortal.
- Antiquated Linguistics: Speaks in Shakespeare's iambic pentameter. Shakespeare is his biographer. Amusingly, he continues to call Orlando his "squire" well into the 21st Century.
- Berserk Button: He's usually calm but Orlando's laziness and general disinterest in century-long quests makes him raise his many-ringed index finger in outrage.
- Big Good: Occupies this role for the league as a whole, well into the 21st Century.
- Breaking the Fourth Wall: His Character Filibuster at the end of The Black Dossier essentially has him admit to knowing the true nature of the entire series and directly address the readers on the theme of the series, namely that fiction inspires reality as much as reality inspires fiction. This recaptures the spirit of his famous closing soliloquy at the end of The Tempest.
- Demoted to Extra: Despite being the reason for the League's existence, and being the driving force behind the plot of the Black Dossier, he only makes two brief appearances during the last chapter of Century to get Orlando to resume her search for the Moonchild, and doesn't even appear to support the remnants of the League during their final battle.
- Go-Karting with Bowser: Is seen briefly communicating with Nyarlathothep in his Crawling Chaos incarnation on fairly even terms, which unnerves Mina.
- Happily Married: To Doll Common. Her death saddened him greatly.
- I Have Many Names: While staying in England, Prospero takes the name of Johannes Subtil, the titular Alchemist from Ben Jonson's play. He marries another character (Doll Common) from the same play.
- No Historical Figures Were Harmed: In Moore's vision, Prospero is one for the famous John Dee, Elizabethan Occultist.
- Our Founder /The Leader /The Mentor: He's the founder and leader of the original league and served as The Mentor to Orlando despite the former being two thousand five hundred years older than him. He serves as one to Mina and Co. as well.
Supporting Characters and Allies
Jenny Diver/ Janni Dakkar/ Captain Nemo II
Source: Original Character for the most part, but initially patterned and referred to as Pirate Jenny from Bertolt Brecht's The Threepenny Opera.
Janni Dakkar is the daughter of Captain Nemo. She resented her father's conservative nature and his Heir Club for Men attitude. However, he nominates her as his successor after her death and despite initial reluctance, she becomes his successor as the second Captain Nemo.She becomes the star of her own spin-off trilogy - Nemo: Heart of Ice, Nemo: Roses of Berlin, Nemo:River Of Ghosts.
- Arch-Enemy: Ayesha, Queen of Kor... "She who must be obeyed..."
- Born in the Wrong Century: She felt out of place in the sexist world of her father and the Victorian world, but she's equally out of place and on the margins in the 20th Century. Her ideas of science and adventure is closer to that of her father (i.e. nature full of wonders, discoveries and the chance for adventure) then the 20th Century dystopian vision of science.
- Daddy's Little Villain: She is conflicted about becoming this and taking on the Nemo mantle but she sets about going her own way doing it.
- The Dreaded: She becomes a terror to rival that of her father and perhaps exceed him...even the likes of Dr. Mabuse is impressed with her.
- From Nobody to Nightmare: She is the daughter of The Dreaded Captain Nemo but she becomes The Runaway and tries to work as a waitress in London's docks. After she's beaten and gang raped, she takes up her Daddy's mantle and indeed seems to be worse than him.
- Happily Married: To Broad Arrow Jack, who served on her father's crew. She cites her love for her husband, who dies in Nemo:Roses of Berlin as the real reason for not wanting to live forever.
- Hero of Another Story: Her crew has a series of adventures and Crisis Crossover hijinks that mirrors and parallels those of the Mina Murray led League.
- I See Dead People: In River of Ghosts as a result of brain tumor, she takes pills but they don't work anymore.
- Kill 'em All:"Kill them slow, or quickly?""Kill them slow."
- Legacy Character: She refuses to become this, disliking her father's cold nature and violent lifestyle. But alas, The Call Knows Where You Live
- Meaningful Name: She is known as Jenny Diver in the expanded lore of Volume 2 and takes the name in Vol 3, Part 1 as an alias. It's the same name from Brecht's Threepenny Opera and the one who sings the famous "Pirate Jenny" ballad in the play.
- Pet the Dog: A more noble figure than her father, Janni has more Pet the Dog moments alongside her wanton slaughter of enemy ships by the dozen. She returns the corpse of King Kong to Skull Island and fights on the side of the Allies during World War II.
- Pirate Girl: She is Pirate Jenny herself.
- Rape and Revenge: She is raped by bar patrons at her place of work and in retaliation, fires a signal flare to the Nautilus in the Estuary and becomes Pirate Jenny.
- Refused The Call: Didn't want to take her father's mantle, choosing instead to work as a lowly waitress. At first...
- Retired Outlaw: At the end of Nemo: Roses of Berlin.
- Science Hero: A more direct example than her father, since she becomes a Techno Pirate that fights all kinds of science fiction monsters and threats in the 20th Century, including Godzilla.
- Shed the Family Name: When she runs away from her father, she calls herself Jenny Diver to disassociate herself from her father's legacy.
- The Last Dance: River of Ghosts is this. She admits to Hugo Hercules, that she's suffering brain tumor, that her pills don't work and she expects to die at the end of this adventure, and she does.
- Who Wants to Live Forever?: Ayesha offers her immortality and a We Can Rule Together but Janni refuses, strongly. She finally dies at the end of River of Ghosts, at the age of 80, on her own terms and with a smile on her face.
Source: Iain Sinclair's Slow Chocolate Autopsy.
Andrew Norton is the Prisoner of Time, a figure trapped in a fixed location in space (the city of London and its suburbs) but can visit the city at any point in time, past, present and future. This allows him to interact with the League over several different centuries across time.
- Author Avatar: He's drawn to resemble his creator, Iain Sinclair.
- Breaking the Fourth Wall: He does this throughout all his appearances, which greatly disconcerts Mina and Orlando, specifically addressing their fictional nature, and then in 1969 discussing the life of Donald Cammell, who directed Performance, whose characters are real figures in the story we are reading and also talking, like author Iain Sinclair about the real-life coincidences and associations of King's Cross stationnote including the "Franchise Express" gathering steam a quarter over platform ten and the fact that it served as the location of an opium den for Johnny Depp.
- Britain Is Only London: For him it's a literal trope, as he is trapped in London and its suburbs physically but can visit the space in any point of time. This is the reason he doesn't accompany Orlando and Mina when they visit Hogwarts in Scotland.
- Future Slang: His appearances throughout history, his 20th Century trenchcoat and modern spectacles make him stand out in pre-modern times but then he opens his mouth and speaks in a very contemporary syntax with multiple cultural references that are outside the comprehension of 19th Century Characters like Mina.
- Ominous Message from the Future: He delivers this to Mina and Co. over the course of Vol 3, first in 1909 and 1969. First time, it's far too cryptic and Reference Overdosed. Second time it's even more ominous, even telling them that when they meet again in 2009, it will be too late. He's right.
- We Will Meet Again
Charles Auguste Dupin
"I only know what I have deduced."
An elderly French detective who comes out of retirement when a former case of his reopens. Prostitutes in the vicinity of the Rue Morgue are being killed by what is described as a large, ape-like creature.
- Ascended Fanboy: He stares in awe at the Nautilus and hints to Mina that he read Dracula, praising her courage.
- Badass Grandpa: A diminutive centenarian. Doesn't stop him from shooting an antiquated pistol at point blank range at Mr. Hyde the moment he appears, while Allan Quatermain is too busy being knocked out.
- Cool Old Guy
- French Jerk: Totally averted. Indeed he's one of the most respectful treatments of original creations in the volume. A wonderful gentleman with good manners who treats Mina without judgment and condescension.
- Great Detective: The original.
- Miniature Senior Citizens
- Public-Domain Character
- What the Hell, Hero?: Subjects Allan to a very justified one when he abandons his watch on Mina to get a bottle of absinthe.
The lead singer and song-writer of the Purple Orchestra. He's bored by his lifestyle of casual hedonism and has an interest in occultist Kosmo Gallion and the works of Oliver Haddo.
- Allohistorical Allusion: The climactic concert at the end of Century 2: Paint It Black is a recreation of the famous Hyde Park Concert (of which a documentary video exists), with Terner dressed in the same costume as Mick Jagger at the time. This was the first post-Brian Jones Stones concert and as a tribute Jagger unleashed a flurry of moths after reciting Percy Shelley's Adonais. Here's its live bats...
- Delusions of Eloquence
- The Face Of The Band: For the Purple Orchestra, though the public visibly miss Basil Thomas (here made into a Brian Jones expy) and regard the new version as The Band Minus the Face
- The Hedonist: Oliver Haddo as Kosmo Gallio is visibly jealous of his lifestyle...which is why he wanted to hijack it.
- Epic Rocking: He may be a fop and pretentious tosser but like his real-life counterpart he sets the stage on fire with Alternate Universe "Sympathy for the Devil".
- Grand Theft Me: The original target for Oliver Haddo, he's foiled by Mina and settles for the poor replacement of Tom Riddle. Weirdly, Terner laments the defeat, feeling he had "lost his daemon". This is a Whole Plot Reference of course, to Performance whose famous Gainax Ending finally gives Terner the transformation he wanted.
- No Celebrities Were Harmed: Well he's imported wholesale from Performance but he and The Purple Orchestra are quite obviously Mick Jagger and The Rolling Stones.
- Prequel: His sub-plot essentially serves as one for the events of Donald Cammell and Nicholas Roeg's Performance showing the manner in which Turner "lost his daemon".
- Writing Around Trademarks: For copyright reasons, Turner and Pherber from Performance are renamed Terner and Phurber...
MI-6, British Military Intelligence
The handlers of the League in its many incarnations. The League's various individuals regard their motives with mistrust and said mistrust is usually justified.
- Face–Heel Turn: From the point of view of Nemo, their casual acceptance of civilian casualties when they used biological weapons against the Martians was this. Later, the rest of the team, who didn't have any inkling about that plan, cut off all ties with MI-6 after its leader, Harry Lime, orchestrated Big Brother's coup.
- Faking the Dead: Their specialty.
- Government Agency of Fiction: A real life organization that literally plays this role, locating and identifying exceptional characters, creating whole new lives for them and making them agents.
- Grey and Gray Morality:"The British Empire has always encountered difficulty in distinguishing between its heroes and its monsters."
- Manipulative Bastard: Every person to hold the office of 'M' has been one.
- Obstructive Bureaucrat: Occasionally.
- Omniscient Council of Vagueness: We don't know who runs MI-6, but the various Ms tend to have their own plans and schemes. For some reason, 'M' is also usually a criminal, like Moriarty and Harry Lime.
- Well-Intentioned Extremist: Their general idea is to ally with difficult and unpleasant individuals like Hyde and even political enemies like Nemo to deal with graver threats.
The second M/Mycroft Holmes
Griffin: "Aheh. Well, that solves the mystery of the detective's disappearance: his brother ate him."
Sherlock Holmes' brother.
- A Lighter Shade of Black: He's not an outright villain like Moriarty, but he's still a pretty amoral character. In the supplemental material of Vol 2, Mina comments that he's a kind of intellectual monster.
- Adipose Rex: Head of British Intelligence, and extremely fat.
- Sibling Rivalry: It's implied that he and his brother do not get along at all.
- Well-Intentioned Extremist: He's willing to use biological warfare to stop the Martians, even if it risks deaths of other Londoners. In Vol 3. Part 1, he orders an execution of Jack MacHeath for the Ripper murders without a trial and is appalled when the Earl of Gurney takes the blame for all the killings (he had only killed one) letting Jack become a Karma Houdini much to his disgust.
Source: Original character. Though you can probably guess whose ancestor he is.
"We live in troubled times, where fretful dreams settle upon the Empire's brow."
Campion Bond is the liaison between the league and the mysterious M. A fat slob with no redeeming qualities.
- Fat Bastard
- Good Hair, Evil Hair: He alternates between a thin beard with a pencil line mustache, and a simple handlebar.
- In the Blood: The Bond family, whether Sir Basildon Bond in Prospero's time or his more famous grandson in the 20th Century are generally shifty scumbags who are condescending, macho and full of themselves.
- Jerk Ass: He's not especially evil or rude but he's very condescending, manipulative and a real toady. He also condescends to Mina and thinks she's not fit to lead the League because she's a woman
- Obstructive Bureaucrat: He's corrupt and careerist but isn't otherwise a villain.
- Smug Snake
- Vetinari Job Security: He seems to have this in Vol. 1 even after basically being a henchman to James Moriarty, he keeps his position in Vol. 2 with no rebuke. Averted in The Black Dossier and Vol 3. Century, the former book has him noting his loss of favor while the latter book has him serve as waiter to the second M and the League, with nothing to do but sulk off-panel.
"Jimmy" / James Bond
A descendant of Campion Bond, Jimmy is the same kind of weaselly slimeball that the League dealt with in the Victorian era though more unpleasant and smug than Campion. He served the government during the Big Brother regime and is a well regarded secret agent.
- Ax-Crazy: Most notable when he hijacks a civilian's hovercar and charges after Mina and Allan with an absolutely batshit insane look on his face
- Dirty Old Man: The glimpse of him in Century 2009 being attended by a ridiculously bosomed blonde nurse suggests this. Hardly surprising.
- Fake Ultimate Hero: He's touted as a great secret agent but his use of gadgets in a fight are shown to be Awesome, but Impractical and only make him look foolish. It's revealed in the end that Jimmy is in fact a traitor to England, having murdered Emma Knight's father and being in the pocket of Americans.
- He-Man Woman Hater: In Alan Moore's view, this was the unpleasant undercurrent of the original stories and Jimmy makes even The Comedian seem like a feminist by comparison, being a rapist who uses torture instruments as foreplay.
- Karma Houdini: Murders Emma Knight's father, betrays England for America, rapes many women and is a thug, and when confronted by Bulldog Drummond rubs it in that he's going to kill him and get away with it and have sex with Emma Knight too. He has even become an institution by the time of Volume III. However, by 2009, he's a crippled old man, riddled with painful STD's, and there's the implication that Night is keeping him alive to ensure he suffers.
- Legacy Character: He's such an institution that MI-6 use his name and identity for different agents (all the Bond actors from Sean Connery to Daniel Craig).
- Take That!: Jimmy is essentially Alan Moore's attack on the myth of James Bond.
- Villain with Good Publicity: He's a traitor to England and a rapist but is also considered a honored establishment figure, so MI-6 keeps younger stand-ins like J3 and J6 to do field work, while the original is tended to by a buxom blonde nurse.
- Writing Around Trademarks: It's pretty clear who he is but for copyright reasons isn't actually referred to as James Bond, or 007.
Mother/ M/ Harry Lime/ Robert Kim Cheery
By the time the Second World War ended, a character called Harry Lime became M and Mina Murray and Allan Quatermain decided to leave England. In the meantime, Ingsoc established Big Brother as Dictator of England with Lime's willing support and aid.
- Allohistorical Allusion: His middle name is Kim after his famous grandfather. It's also a reference to real-life Soviet spy Kim Phillby, a friend of Graham Greene who wrote the screenplay of The Third Man of whom Harry Lime is an Expy. Kim Phillby by the way was in fact named after Kipling's Kim. Yup, Alan Moore thinks things through with his allusions
- Big Brother Is Watching You: Harry Lime does the watching for Big Brother and even watches him in turn and later kills him to replace Ingsoc when he realizes that it's not working.
- Faking the Dead /That Man Is Dead:"Jimmy, you can call me M. Behind my back, you can even call me Mother. But Harry...Harry died a long time ago in the sewers under Vienna. Let's leave it like that, shall we?"
- Famous Ancestor: He's descended from Kimball O'Hara.
- From Nobody to Nightmare: Formerly Bob Cheery of the Famous Five. He and his gang go on to install Ingsoc and create a Stalinist dictatorship in England.
- Greater Scope Villain: Of The Black Dossier, though he doesn't actually fight the League, preferring to work behind the scenes.
- I Have Many Names: He is known to the league as that "viper" Harry Lime, he's M in intelligence, Emma Night calls him Mother. Big Brother calls him Bob. His real name is Robert Kim Cheery
- Karma Houdini: He remains M after Mina and Allan leave for the Blazing World.
- The Man Behind the Man: Served as this to Ingsoc and the Big Brother regime. Big Brother being Harry Wharton, his old classmate from Greyfriars.
Emma Night/ M
- Action Girl: Mina realizes that Emma knows Indian wrestling and Judo.
- The Atoner: How she feels in Volume III, Part 3, especially after learning that her father was murdered by Jimmy who was an American spy the whole time.
- Cruel Mercy: She eventually discovered that Bond murdered her father, and, by 2009, is forcibly keeping him alive despite his STD-ruined body and declining health to ensure he suffers.
- Expy: Not only of Emma Peel, but also Tracy Bond, both of whom are played by the same actress, Diana Rigg, her appearance in Vol III, makes her resemble the Judi Dench M in the Bond films.
The first M/Professor James Moriarty
"It's James. Call me James."
- Arch-Enemy: Arch enemy of Sherlock Holmes and in Vol. 1 to the Doctor/Fu Manchu.
- Bad Boss: Not above using his sergeant as a human shield.
- Bald of Evil
- Becoming the Mask: Discusses this with Campion Bond. He was recruited by MI-6 to serve as a criminal to keep the London Underworld under his thumb but over time seems to have confused his vocation."Am I, for example, a director of military intelligence posing as a criminal or a criminal posing as a director of military intelligence or both?"
- Big Bad: Of the first volume.
- Cool Airship: Owns a nice one, powered by Cavorite.
- Disney Villain Death: An interesting variation: He "falls" up into space while holding onto the Cavorite.
- Entertainingly Wrong: He notes that Sherlock Holmes understood his activities as a criminal but somehow never reached the conclusion that his criminal empire was on a scale that could only be enabled by The British Empire, never realizing that he, the Great Detective was ultimately an Unwitting Pawn for MI-6.
- Evil VS Evil: With the Doctor.
- First-Name Basis: With Campion Bond.
- Ironic Nursery Tune: He sings "Twinkle, twinkle, little star" as he prepares to bomb Limehouse.
- The Man Behind the Man: To Campion Bond.
- Only You Can Repopulate My Race: 70 years after his death at the end of Vol. 1, his embalmed corpse is harvested for sperm to repopulate the Amazon Women on the Moon's population. Watch this space...
- Politically Incorrect Villain: Expresses scorn towards Mina, and calls her a "lesbian" for her position as leader of the league. He also flips out and calls Sherlock "a drug addicted sodomite" when the latter defeats him.
- Reasonable Authority Figure: Despite his personal opinion, he's quite sharp about what can make a team work, even arguing to the sexist Campion Bond for Mina to lead the team on the grounds that a woman in a squad of strong males would be ideally placed to keep a lid on the inevitable Dysfunction Junction.
- Public-Domain Character
- The Spymaster: somebody in Her Majesty's government thought it would be a good idea for the world's most notorious crime lord to have this post.
- Villainous Breakdown: After falling down Reichenbach Falls and before realizing that he's Not Quite Dead, he goes quite berserk, even moreso at the end of Vol 1.
- Worthy Opponent: His relationship to Sherlock Holmes.
Source: The "Fu Manchu" series by Sax Rohmer.
A mysterious Chinese Doctor who rules over the Chinese population of Limehouse.
- Ambiguously Human: The Doctor does not look entirely human, but no explanation of his nature appears.
- Cool Airship: Was in the process of constructing one.
- The Dreaded: Quatermain, who's Seen It All, is utterly terrified just by a glimpse of him.
- Good Hair, Evil Hair: Sports a classic "Fu Manchu" mustache.
- Hellish Pupils: Has semi-rectangular, goat-like eyes.
- Lawyer-Friendly Cameo: Quite obviously supposed to be Fu Manchu, but never reffered to by name.
- Torture Technician: We first meet him punishing a subordinate... by practicing calligraphy on said subordinate's skin in acid paint.
- Yellow Peril
- Source: William Somerset Maugham's The Magician.
An occultist who first confronts the League in Century 1910, he goes on to be the recurring Big Bad of Volume III.
- Big Bad / Big Bad Duumvirate: He is this for Volume III as a whole. Sharing it in Century 2009 with the Moonchild or the Antichrist.
- Body Surfing: This is how he attains immortality, bringing a disciple/inheritor next to him on his deathbed then switching bodies, the previous dying a few seconds later.
- Depraved Bisexual: Don't get in his way, or you'll find yourself on the end of his blasting rod. No, not the magical kind.
- Didn't See That Coming: His convoluted plans collapse when Carter shoots his body in the head while his spirit is in the Astral Plane trying to possess Terner/Mick Jagger. As a last resort he possesses the body of a creepy dude named Tom Riddle.
- Disappointed In You: He expresses this constantly and frequently to The Antichrist, Harry Potter.
- Evil Sorceror: For much of his appearance he is this. He undergoes severe Badass Decay in century 2009.
- Grand Theft Me: He keeps hijacking different hosts through the centuries, each of them being an expy of him. He pulls a very dickish one on Kosmo Gallionnote , hijacking him on his own death bed and then boasting of sleeping with his fiancee while Gallion dies in Haddo's decrepit body.
- Though eventually he becomes a victim of this. His plan of hijacking Terner's body at Hyde Park fails when he's killed by Carter (Michael Caine in Mike Hodges film) and is forced to take over the body of Tom Riddle, the future Lord Voldemort of Harry Potter books. He regrets this since the Antichrist was a total failure, at least for him.
- No Historical Figures Were Harmed: Oliver Haddo was a No Celebrities Were Harmed version of Aleister Crowley who appeared in W. Somerset Maugham's The Magician. Crowley being a Fountain of Expies inspired several works in the 20th Century and Volume III and the expanded lore has him taking on several alternate guises and forms of each of his expies throughout the century, a short list includes Karswell from M. R. James' Casting the Runes, Hjalmar Poelzig (Boris Karloff) from Edgar G. Ulmer's film The Black Cat, Adrian Marcato from Rosemary's Baby and Kosmo Gallion from a famous episode of The Avengers.
- As Gallion, he is further a nod towards some of Crowley's real-life disciples, including Karl Germer (Crowley's immediate successor as OHO, note the initials), Jack Parsons (both he and Gallion were rocket scientists), and Kenneth Anger (with Terner's concert standing in for Anger's experimental films).
- Politically Incorrect Villain: He claims that the occult is a way to get away from conservative sexual repression but tends to regard his women followers as concubines. He even makes vulgar misogynist remarks to Mina, even threatening to take advantage of her by pulling a Grand Theft Me on her body, though Mina stops him from achieving that.
- Really Gets Around: Haddo tends to be surrounded by lots of semi-naked followers and even makes creepy overtures to Mina.
- Shaggy Dog Story: He noted that his plan on starting a new aeon failed and that the Moonchild he wanted turned out to be a whiny Spoiled Brat strung out on prescription drugs.
- Victory Is Boring: He thwarts the League in Vol. 1 and 2 and manages to create The Antichrist but is sorely disappointed and even regretful at the entire thing.
The Moonchild / Harry Potter
The Moonchild or the Antichrist is one half of the Big Bad Duumvirate of Volume III. His fate is to bring about the end of the world. He is a parody of the Harry Potter character and is roundly defeated by God/Mary Poppins.
- Adaptational Villainy: Unlike his counterpart in the original books, this incarnation of Harry Potter was destined to be the Antichrist and becomes a murderous psychopath after learning of this.
- The Antichrist: Also known as "The Moonchild".
- Bald of Evil: His adult form is shaven bald.
- Big Bad: Of the final part of Century.
- Dark Messiah: Was intended to be this and bring about The End of the World as We Know It.
- Delusions of Eloquence: Thinks being The Antichrist is special because he's "like in The Bible".
- Evil Former Friend: Murders Ron and Hermione when they beg him to spare their lives. He also rapes Professor McGonagall and kills Ginny.
- Eyes Do Not Belong There: Eyes tend to sprout all over his head.
- Go Mad from the Revelation: Let's say he didn't take the revelation of his true nature and his purpose in life very well. Specifically that all his adventures were a ruse to prevent him from facing his true purpose.
- Humanoid Abomination/Eldritch Abomination: Was initially a normal black-hair bespectacled boy, after he goes nuts he cuts off his hair, scratches off the "mark on his head" with his fingers, and starts sprouting eyes all over his body and becomes giant size.
- Important Haircut: Has a significant buzz of shorn hair and the room he is in is filled with cut black hair and a pair of broken glasses.
- Jerkass: Even aside from the terrible things he does, he's a whiny little ingrate drugged up on prescription pills and looks down on Mina and Orlando for not being great heroes, "like Jesus" and that they're "just women".
- Kill 'em All: Murders the entire Harry Potter supporting cast, and the people of Hogsmeade including Ron, Hermione, Ginny, Draco, Hagrid, McGonagall, Snape, Dumbledore and Hedwig.
- No Sell: When facing against Mary Poppins he boasts of being The Antichrist:"I'm well famous, actually. I'm in a book of the Bible."
- Speaking Like Totally Teen: Pretty much how he talks all the time.
- Take That!: His appearance and form is Moore's opinion of modern fantasy franchises with their male adolescent protagonists who tend not to be especially intelligent and are frequently Unwitting Pawns.
- Teens Are Monsters: Of the School Shooter variety.
- That Man Is Dead: The fact that he erased all visible traces of his former identity suggests that the Moonchild no longer identifies himself as Harry Potter.
- Underestimating Badassery: Looks down at Mina Murray and Orlando as being ineffectual heroes against him because they are "just women"; you know, people who have fought the likes of Dracula, James Moriarty, the Martians and The Trojan War.
- Woobie, Destroyer of Worlds: Not a sympathetic example, indeed a pathetic example, but he was basically created for a purpose and function he did not ask for and tried to resist with anti-depressant pills and hiding himself from the world.
- Writing Around Trademarks: His appearance is completely different from his popular identity. For one thing he's bald, he's broken his glasses and there's a bandaid in place of the lightning bolt scar of Harry Potter. The only thing left are his distinct green eyes.
Ayesha, Queen of Kor
The Queen of Kor, the immortal Ayesha is a recurring figure in the Nemo series, serving as the antagonist to Janni Dakkar. She also appears in the backstory of The Black Dossier.
- Always Chaotic Evil: Little Jack Nemo thought one of the Ayesha clones was truly good and tried to save her, but then she tried to kill him as well, until Tacarigua/Ishmael II saved him just in time.
- Ax-Crazy: She has an apetite for violence, and dead birds.
- Arch-Enemy: To Janni Dakkar.
- Beauty Equals Goodness: Totally, completely subverted.
- Foil: To her Arch-Enemy, Janni Dakkar, who is a genuinely feminist and multi-cultural Action Girl and Science Hero, whereas Ayesha, despite being a woman, perpetuates the patriarchy, being a brutal ruler of her people, and then allying with wealthy tycoons, fascist dictators and mad scientists.
- Greater Scope Villain: In the Nemo Trilogy. The only time she and Janni actually fight is in Roses of Berlin while in River of Ghosts, Janni fights against attempts to revive her legacy via android duplicates.
- Hot Consort: Apparently to Charles Foster Kane.
- Mighty Whitey: Though so tyrannical her subjects apparently depose her, according to Janni Dakkar.
- My Death Is Just the Beginning: Years after her death, ex-Nazis try and create clones of her, via the same method they built The Stepford Wives.
- Off With Her Head: Her present fate as of the end of Nemo:Roses of Berlin. Hildy Johnson asks if she could have survived that considering her immortality, but Janni assures her that she's dead, and Vol 3 confirms it. Also counts as something of a Karmic Death, considering her habit of beheading innocent doves out of apparent boredom.
- Villain Team-Up: With Adenoid Hynkel
- Source: Strattlemeye Syndicate's Tom Swift books.
The hero of the Edisonade story, the young inventor is assigned by Charles Foster Kane to recover a McGuffin stolen by Janni Dakkar and capture her.
- Adaptational Villainy: Presented in a much darker light than his original stories, with Moore following on the darker implications of the books as per Values Dissonance.
- Allohistorical Allusion: Thomas Swift's Electric Rifle was the real world inspiration for the Taser note . It's featured here and Swyfte boasts of how it will one day be used for urban law enforcement
- Dirty Coward: He will fully abandon colleagues to save his own life.
- Go Mad from the Revelation: His eventual fate when he confronts the Shoggoths At the Mountains of Madness.
- It's All About Me: He doesn't care about anyone but himself.
- Only in It for the Money: His inventions are made for this, in contrast to the For Science! attitude of Wright, Van Dusen and others.
- Politically Incorrect Villain: His portrayal highlights the racism in his original stories.