Jamie Madrox (Multiple Man)

Created by Len Wein, Chris Claremontand John Buscema

JAMIE MADROX was another of Marvel’s attempts to create a private eye/superhero hybrid. He first appeared in bit parts mostly, hanging out in various X-books, as Multiple Man, a mutant born with the rather peculiar ability to create endless autonomous duplicates of himself;  essentially clones to whom he had an empathic link, but could go out and live their own lives. He could then re-absorb these “dupes” and gain knowledge of all of their experiences. Must have come in handy when doing chores or cramming for an exam, but tax time must have been a bitch.

Then writer Peter David decided to add a little more depth to Madrox in X-Factor, beginning in the mid-nineties and, after the fall of the X-Corporation, and made Madrox the head of XXX Investigations (later renamed X-Factor Investigations) in the Mutant Town area of New York City, eventually recruiting former X-Factor teammates Wolfsbane and Strong Guy.

Of course, his ability to essentially photocopy himself came in handy. After dispatching his dupes to go out into the world and do things, he was able to re-absorb them and all their knowledge and experiences, thus becoming an expert lock picker, a licensed attorney, an expert at surveillance, an accomplished martial artist, an Olympic-level gymnast, and a fluent speaker of a multitude of languages.

Oh, and the owner of a rather quirky sense of humour.

But if you’re looking for actual detective work, Multiple Man probably isn’t the dick to follow — most of his “cases” are more about flitting around the Marvel Universe and slugging it out with various super-villains in an increasingly tiresome and convoluted array of parallel universes and realities.

Continuity? Hah! This is Marvel! But as weak as comic book superhero consistency generally goes, Multiple Man — with all his infinite clones — is infinitely worse, with entire story arcs wandering this way and that, only to ultimately reveal that the protagonist we were following wasn’t even the “real” Jamie Madrox, but a wayward dupe.

Then, in 2016, Madrox was killed during the Death of X storyline, when he and his dupes travelled to Muir Island (an island off the coast of Scotland that contains Earth’s largest mutant lab) to study something called the Terrigen Mists, only to discover the mists are fatal to mutants. Ooops!

But this being comics, despite his “death,” Madrox popped up in the 2019 Merry X-Men Holiday Special.

Or maybe it was one of his dupes.

It’s complicated.


    (1975, Marvel Comics)
    (1986-2013, Marvel Comics)
    (2004-05, Marvel Comics)

    • “Soul of a Gumshoe” (November 2004; #1)
    • “The Chicago Whey” (December 2004; #2)
    • “Dead Dirty Pool” (January 2005; #3)
    • “The Bigger Heat” (February 2005; #4)
    • “Once Burned, Twice Shy” (March 2005; #5)
    (2006-09, Marvel Comics)
    (2016, Marvel Comics)
    Written by Jeff Lemire  and Charles D. Soule
    Art by Aaron Kuder
    ( 2019, Marvel Comics)

    • “Jamie Madrox in The Gift of the Madri” (February 2019; #1)
      Writer: Matthew Rosenberg
      Art by: Andy MacDonald


Respectfully submitted by Kevin Burton Smith.

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