Etrigan the Demon

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CHARACTER

Etrigan the Demon

Bound by the wizard Merlin himself to a hound of hell, Jason Blood travels eternity with a literal personal demon.                                                      

INTRODUCTION

Aliases: Jason Blood

First Appearance: THE DEMON #1, 1972

 

 

 

“Change! Change, O form of man! Release the might from fleshy mire! Boil the blood in heart of fire! Gone! Gone, the form of man! Rise, the Demon Etrigan!!” These words are the key to unlocking Jason Blood’s transformation from demonologist to demon.

 

Jason, once a mortal man who lived centuries ago in the days of Arthurian legend, was bound to Etrigan after the Demon was summoned by none other than Merlin, the wizard of King Arthur’s court. Jason was rendered immortal and granted the ability to swap places with his demonic counterpart upon saying the magic words.

 

As two separate consciousnesses and entities, Jason and Etrigan are often in direct conflict with each other. Though Jason has tried many times to exert his will over Etrigan while he is transformed, the Demon is too powerful to be completely contained. Still, more often than not, Etrigan, despite his nature, is interested in the greater good—even if his motives and methods remain suspect at best.

 

ORIGIN

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When the wizard Merlin summoned Etrigan, son of the demon lord Belial, to Earth, he’d intended to learn all the secrets of Hell. Unfortunately, Etrigan was less than willing to cooperate. In desperation, Merlin cast a spell to bind Etrigan’s soul to that of Jason Blood, a mortal man who was subsequently rendered immortal. 

 

Jason went into hiding for centuries, only to resurface in modern-day Gotham City as a demonologist. A specialist in the occult, he learned the magical incantation that allowed him to transform into the Demon. 

 

Unfortunately, his first transformation in modern times caught the attention of some of Etrigan’s and Merlin’s enemies. Morgan Le Fay, an immortal obsessed with uncovering Merlin’s secrets, tracked the Demon down, prompting him to step out of the shadows and into a bigger world.  

 

 

 

 

POWERS AND ABILITIES

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Both Jason and Etrigan are masters of the arcane arts. Etrigan has the ability to produce and manipulate hellfire, as well as telepathy, limited precognition and other extrasensory abilities. One of Hell’s rhyming demons, Etrigan often speaks in, but is not limited to, rhymes. 

 

In addition to his immortality, Etrigan also possesses a fast-healing factor and extremely enhanced strength. 

 

Etrigan is typically depicted as speaking only in rhyme. To transform between Jason Blood and Etrigan, the two must recite a line of a magical poem, though there have been occasions on which the transformation has occurred without the poem being said.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

ESSENTIAL STORYLINES AND HISTORY

 

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The Demon (1972-2011)

The tension between the Demon himself and his human vessel, Jason Blood, defined Etrigan’s early years. Following Jason’s discovery of the poem that allowed him to transform into Etrigan, and the resurgence of Morgan Le Fay, both Jason and Etrigan found themselves at a crossroads. Jason attempted to focus Etrigan’s powers on serving the greater good, but the Demon was beholden to his own will and motivation when he was in control. This led to a love-hate relationship for both Jason and Etrigan with the rest of the Super Heroes in the DC Universe. 

 

Years after his introduction and the birth of his daughter, Jason attempted to put a stop to Etrigan for good by hiring a metahuman assassin named Tommy Monaghan, a.k.a. Hitman. Monaghan was unable to carry out the contract, but—following an attack against Merlin and Etrigan—was able to bind Etrigan’s will to Jason’s, neutralizing the chaotic side effects of the Demon’s transformation (THE DEMON: SUFFER THE CHILDREN, 1994-1995). 

 

Alas, the freedom afforded to Jason did not last. After Jason failed to pay Monaghan the two million dollars he owed him, Monaghan traded his own heart to Etrigan in exchange for a mystical weapon, the Ace of Winchesters. The exchange returned Etrigan to his full power capacity and left Jason unable to assert his will over the Demon. 

 

The 2005-2006 series BLOOD OF THE DEMON explained some of the intricacies of the limitations set on Etrigan by the wizard Merlin during his original summoning. Jason was once again able to exert some of his own willpower over Etrigan’s violent impulses, but his control remained unreliable. 

 

 

 

The New 52 (2011-2016)

demon-essential2-new52-DemonKnights#1-pg7-v1.jpg Following 2011’s FLASHPOINT, Etrigan was given a new origin story. Rather than the product of an inadvertent summoning by Merlin, Etrigan was shown as a demon who attempted to start an ultimately unsuccessful rebellion against Lucifer. Lucifer himself then passed Etrigan on to Merlin. The wizard then intentionally bound Etrigan to Jason Blood in an attempt to fulfill a prophecy that stated that Jason must be put on an eternal quest, lest he prompt the fall of Camelot. 

 

The binding made Jason immortal, and he and Etrigan traveled the world with a band of other occult adventurers.

 

Their team—composed of immortals and magic users like Madame Xanadu, the Shining Knight and Vandal Savage—was short-lived. Etrigan hatched a plot to sell his teammates’ souls to gain favor in Hell. For this betrayal, Jason vowed to prevent himself from transforming. Eventually, the team was forced to seal Etrigan in a magical tomb beneath London, but the imprisonment granted Etrigan the ability to possess other mortals should he ever be freed. 

 

 

TEAM AFFILIATIONS

  • • Demon Knights
  • • Justice League
  • • Justice League Dark

APPEARANCES IN OTHER MEDIA

Television


Guest Appearances/Cameos

Animation:

  • • The New Batman Adventures
  • • Justice League
  • • Justice League Unlimited
  • • Batman: The Brave and the Bold
  • • Teen Titans Go!

 

 

Film

 

Main Character Appearances

Animation:

  • • Justice League Dark

 

 

Video Games

  • • DC Universe Online
  • • LEGO Batman 3: Beyond Gotham
  • • Injustice 2