Ellen King

ellenkingfilmThe last episode of Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. introduced another comicbook character, albeit in a completely different version than the original. In The Inside Man, director Phil Coulson forges an uncomfortable alliance with General Glenn Talbot to infiltrate a worldwide symposium on Inhumans, and identify who among the presents is an agent for Gideon Malick. Among the suspects, there’s Australian representative Ellen King, portrayed by Melissa Bickerton, a woman who Coulson and his team believe to be the Hydra spy, but who’s actually “only” kidnapping and studying Inhumans on her own. In the comics, Ellen King is a totally different character, who has nothing to do with Inhumans…or even with Australia, for what it matters. Let’s see together.

Not much is known about Ellen King’s early life (especially considering that, as a character, she’s extremely “young”, created this very February on the pages of the new Daredevil). She lived in New York City, and she studied Law to eventually become a paralegal; in this role, she was hired in the New York County District Attorney’s Office, assisting the D.A. in his operations. At an unspecified point in her life, Ellen met Sharon, a woman she fell in love with: Sharon was once a mutant, but after Scarlet Witch reduced the world’s mutant population to a few hundreds of people with one of her spells, Sharon lost her abilities as a result, and was now making a living renting buildings to powered people who wanted to start an activity (among Sharon’s tenants there were the lawyer She-Hulk and the private investigators Howard the Duck and Spider-Woman). Eventually, Ellen and Sharon got married, with Ellen initially struggling to balance her career (that took most of her time) with her private life. Ellen and Sharon sticked together nevertheless, always supporting each other, even when Sharon entered quite some trouble ellenkingcomics1when her building started to make not enough money for her to keep it, and she decided to sell it; Ellen helped her wife organize a party for the holidays just before selling her building, and among the many invited guests there were also She-Hulk and her paralegal, Angie Huang…who discovered that Sharon was actually under the influence of a malign force that wanted to force her to sell her property. She-Hulk and Angie helped Sharon to get rid of this influence (that turned out to be originated by some mysterious bluish magical bug-like creatures), and Ellen got his wife back, without the crippling sadness and depression that had haunted her in the previous months. She also attended the most chaotic holiday party ever, as in a tactic to break the influence over Sharon She-Hulk had invited many of her most “colourful” friends, such as Hellcat, Captain MarvelTony Stark and many others.

Also at work things became quite different for Ellen, mostly because of the addition of a new lawyer to the D.A. office, Matt Murdock, a blind and brilliant man who had become a prosecuting attorney after a life spent as a defense attorney. Murdock was hired as an assistant D.A., and Ellen worked with him every day, actually finding the man quite suspect: every morning, Matt arrived at work with new bruises and cuts, testifying a rather intense life…surely more intense than the one anybody could expect from a blind lawyer. The one time Ellen tried to confront Murdock directly about it, the man told her that it often happens that a handicapped person, in order to prove himself and others that he’s able just as anybody else, enjoys attempting ridiculously dangerous extreme sports…embarassed, Ellen stopped asking him about it, but the “rock climbing” excuse soon started to sound fishy, despite the plausibility. The District Attorney officer, however, had something else to work on, so Ellen King put her doubts and personal investigation besides: a new criminal gang, the Church of Sheltering Hands, was targeting the immigrnats in China Town making them become blind followers of a dangerous cult. Ellen trusted Matt’s intuition, and helped him in his investigation on the Church, especially after its ellenkingcomics2leader, Tenfingers (a former member of The Hand) applied for federal recognition, so that he could continue his operations protected by legality. Freedom of worship made it nearly impossible for King and Murdock to prosecute Tenfingers and his followers, but much to Ellen’s surprise Matt was able to convince a former member of the Church, Billy Li, to testify against the leaders of the cult. Unfortunately, Billy Li was nearly killed by some assassins sent by the Sheltering Hands, and only Daredevil‘s intervention managed to save him…but, after that, Li refused to testify again. Ellen King and the D.A. officer had lost their key witness, and they would have inevitably lost their cause against Tenfingers…one of the many defeats the district attorney was used to in his regular job, but one that Murdock didn’t seem to accept well.

Ellen King is a smart and determined woman, with a deep expertise in law and a natural nose for stories and investigations. Her intelligence and knowledge of law and past cases makes her a needed help in the D.A. office, while her courage and character won the respect of all her colleagues, and the love of her wife Sharon. A woman in career with no problems in balancing her private life with her work, Ellen King is one of the best paralegals in her office, and a dependable ally even in the most dangerous cases.


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