Captain Britain (Brian Braddock), is a fictional character, a superhero appearing in the comic books published by Marvel Comics. Created by Chris Claremont and Herb Trimpe, he first appeared in Captain Britain Weekly #1 (October 1976). The character has been used in stories through the years by many people, most notably Chris Claremont, Alan Davis, and Alan Moore.
In other media
The character was initially intended to be a British equivalent of Captain America. Endowed with extraordinary powers by the legendary magician Merlyn and his daughter Roma, Captain Britain was assigned to uphold the laws of Britain.
Captain Britain was briefly seen in the fourth part of the Phoenix Saga from X-Men', in the episode "The Starjammers". Psylocke mentions him during "Beyond Good and Evil", though she merely says "my brother".
Captain Britain appears in The Super Hero Squad Show episode "O Captain, My Captain", voiced by Charlie Adler. He is shown as a member of the All-Captains Squad.
Captain Britain briefly appears in the final episode of Marvel Anime: X-Men.
Captain Britain is a playable character in the Facebook game Marvel: Avengers Alliance.
Captain Britain appears in Lego Marvel Super Heroes, voiced by J.B. Blanc. The players can unlock Captain Britain by helping him to beat up bad guys in the subway. Captain Britain's Brit-Mobile can be unlocked by bringing his misplaced Brit-Mobile to him.
Born and raised in the small town of Maldon, Essex and educated at Fettes College in Edinburgh, Brian was a shy and studious youth, living a relatively quiet life and spending a lot of time with his parents and siblings (older brother Jamie and fraternal twin Elizabeth). The family were an aristocratic one who were no longer rich enough to fraternise with their former academic peers, leaving Brian (too proud to fraternise with lower classes) a lonely child who immersed himself in the study of physics.
After the death of his parents (Sir James and Lady Elizabeth) in what seemed to be a laboratory accident, Brian takes a fellowship at Darkmoor nuclear research centre. When the facility is attacked by the technological criminal Joshua Stragg (alias "The Reaver"), Brian tries to find help by escaping on his motorcycle. Although he crashes his bike in a nearly fatal accident, Merlyn and his daughter, the Omniversal Guardian, Roma appear to the badly injured Brian. They give him the chance to be the superhero Captain Britain. He is offered a choice: the Amulet of Right or the Sword of Might. Considering himself to be no warrior and unsuited for the challenge, he rejects the Sword and chooses the Amulet. This choice transforms Brian Braddock into Captain Britain.
It is later revealed that Braddock is only one member of a much larger, inter-dimensional corps of mystical protectors. Every Earth in Marvel Comics' Multiverse has its own Captain Britain who is expected to defend that version of Britain and uphold its local laws. They are collectively called the Captain Britain Corps. Captain Britain protects "Earth-616" of the Marvel Universe. Later still, it was retconned that Brian's father, Sir James Braddock, was himself from Otherworld and a member of an earlier Corps; Merlyn had sent him to Earth-616 to take a carefully chosen mate and father a hero who would be far greater even than he (other comics still have the Braddock family as old and established: they've been in the Hellfire Club for generations and Braddock Manor is a "quarter millenium" old in its first appearance).
Powers and abilities
Originally, Captain Britain's powers were linked to the mystical Amulet of Right, worn around his neck. When Brian Braddock rubbed the amulet he was transformed from an ordinary mortal into a superhero version of himself, complete with a more muscular physique. The amulet could also mystically replenish his superhuman energies. He also possessed a telescoping staff to vault. This also had other functions, the most heavily relied upon being the ability to project a force field. Later, Merlyn changed the staff into the mace-like Star Sceptre, which he could utilize like a quarterstaff and which also gave him the ability of flight. Merlyn changed his costume just before he entered the alternate Earth-238, fusing the powers of the Amulet and the Scepter into the new uniform and then later put these powers within Brian himself when he was forced to rebuild Brian following Brian's death at the hands of the Fury, making the suit a regulatory device for his powers. Eventually, Brian no longer required even the battle-suit for the full use of his powers, as his heritage of being the son of a denizen of the extra-dimensional Otherworld became enough to power him.
Brian Braddock has superhuman strength, speed, stamina, durability, reflexes, senses, and the ability to fly at supersonic speeds. He also possesses enhanced perceptions that allow him to be aware of things others may miss (such as objects cloaked by spells of illusion). When he and Meggan destroyed the Otherworld energy matrix at Roma's prompting[volume & issue needed], the energies that allowed him to retain his power within the UK without his costume were dissipated. Hence, to retain his powers anywhere on Earth, he must wear the costume at all times. His costume acts as an antenna and battery, allowing him to retain his powers wherever he goes.
However, the conditions of his power were once again changed during his death and resurrection in the first story arc of Captain Britain and MI: 13 as explained by writer Paul Cornell,
As we reveal in issue five, the limits of Brian's powers are now tied in to his emotions. So if he's feeling very determined and confident, then he's very powerful, but if he's losing it then he'll really be losing it. He's as strong as he used to be, and he can fly, and that's all due to his magical nature, not to his costume. I've always seen him as something like the Shazam Captain Marvel, a hero formed through magic. Which means the subjective nature of what he can now do feels apt to me. As he himself says about great feats depending on whether or not he can gather all his courage together, he says: 'well, I am Captain Britain.'
Brian is the fraternal twin of Betsy Braddock, a telepath, resulting in a strong psychic bond between the two. As described by writer Chris Claremont in the Uncanny X-Men House of M storyline, the two are in fact immune to each other's powers because of their genetic connection.
In addition, Braddock is a brilliant scientist with a Ph.D. in physics.
IGN ranked Captain Britain as the 79th greatest comic book hero of all time stating that, as he is the only Marvel hero to receive the benefit of Alan Moore's pen, the character enjoys very rarefied status in the Marvel Universe.