Brigid O’Reilly (Mayhem)

The debut of Cloak & Dagger is rapidly approaching, and Freeform just released some new promo pics, portraying some of the recurring characters. First in line there’s Detective Brigid O’Reilly, who’ll be portrayed by Emma Lahana. In the show, O’Reilly will be a cop with a strong sense of justice, that will apparently put her at odds with some of her not-so-clean colleagues. The difficulty of being a woman in a men’s world will also be referenced. In the comics, Brigid is indeed a detective, and definitely a honest one, but she ends up becoming something completely different because of the intervention of our young heroes. Let’s see together.

Brigid O’Reilly was born in Manhattan, New York City, but not much is known about her early days. She had an inseparable friend, Rebecca Nales, a college friend she had a lot in common with. After college, both Brigid and Rebecca enrolled in the Police Academy, and they both climbed through the ranks and became detectives, always having each other’s back. In the NYPD, Brigid took on any kind of case, becoming a respected and appreciated officer, albeit some of her corrupt colleagues started fearing her as well. During one of her cases, she was investigating on a group of “chickenhawks“, criminals who preyed on runaways. She found one of them in an alley, shocked by the meeting with two new vigilantes, Cloak and Dagger. O’Reilly didn’t like this the least, as she believed vigilantes did more harm than good, and she had the confirmation just the night after: she finally cornered the remaining chickenhawks as they were following two runaways, but one of the kids got shot in the back after the super-duo’s intervention. Her next case revolved around a serial killer, and in this case Cloak and Dagger teleported directly into her office to offer her help. O’Reilly immediately shot them, but Cloak absorbed the bullets and unarmed her. As the duo showed good intentions, O’Reilly reluctantly accepted their offer, and they told them the name of the main suspect: Duane Hellman, a clerk who had been fired by three stores, two of them being the crime scenes. O’Reilly, Cloak and Dagger went to the third shop, just in time to stop Hellman… but then Cloak absorbed him into the Darkforce Dimension. O’Reilly tried to stop him grabbing the killer, but nearly got sucked in as well. She was released, but as she ordered Cloak to do the same with Hellman, he remarked that he was already “gone”. Just one more reason to arrest the two vigilantes.

Feeling guilty for having helped the vigilantes take justice into their own hands, and also for believing that Hellman had it coming, O’Reilly hunted Cloak and Dagger down, until she located them at Holy Ghost Church, protected by Father Delgado. She snuck in, and hid until she was alone with Cloak, who was in the middle of a fight with a gangster, Cheka. After the struggle, O’Reilly confronted Cloak, wanting to arrest him for murder, but as she made him realize he couldn’t call himself a man if he didn’t control his urges, Cloak released Hellman for her to arrest. Now, she didn’t have any reason to arrest him, and she let him go. From that point, she started an on-and-off cooperation with the duo, always trying to prevent them to kill criminals. Then, she decided to clean the NYPD from a wide net of corruption she had discovered. Captain Petrovic gave her a team of five: Detective Brady, Officer Kris Cleary, Roger Falcone, Officer Luois Mazzilli and Eddie Sawchuck. Their investigation led them to the docks, where a shipment of drugs were expected to arrive, with the police closing an eye on it. One of Falcone’s informants had pinpointed the location of the drug, and in fact O’Reilly and her men found it into an abandoned warehouse… but also Falcone, Brady and Sawchuck were corrupt, and they had led the others into a trap. As they moved into the warehouse, O’Reilly, Cleary and Mazzilli were trapped into a glass cage, that started filling with poisonous gas. O’Reilly tried to break the glass by shooting at it, to no avail. She swore vengeance with her dying breath, as she saw her two officers die as the traitors escaped. Cloak and Dagger arrived just as she was about to die, and they tried to save her, with Cloak enveloping her in his darkness, and Dagger trying to heal her with her light, but even this failed, and Brigid died. Some minutes after that, however, she came back to life, with the vigilantes’ powers having mutated her: she was now a zombie-like creature, thirsty for vengeance and with toxic powers. Mayhem was born, and she craved Falcone’s blood.

Brigid O’Reilly used to be a honest and by-the-book cop, but she’s now a brutal vigilante filled with holy rage, who hunts down and kills mercilessly the criminals in her way. As Mayhem, she can either exist in gaseous, intangible form, or in a solid one, that constantly exudes a corrosive, toxic gas from her skin; this gas can paralyze or kill anyone once it enters someone’s bloodstream, and it can also act as defense as it is acid enough to melt bullets; it’s also a hallucinogen, that Mayhem uses as a truth-serum; she also has razor-sharp nails she uses in combat to open wounds to allow the gas to penetrate the bloodstream. Now the ruthless vigilante she used to despite as a cop, Mayhem resolved to deliver justice in a more violent and direct way, believing institutional justice not to be as swift and effective as slicing a throat…



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