Albert Francis Simmons was born in Detroit, Michigan. He was the second of three children (Marc, Al and Richard) who's father was a traveling saleman and grandfather was a hellspawn called "Gunslinger Spawn". Simmons was a very intelligent and physically strong officer in the United States Marine Corps, attaining the rank of Lieutenant Colonel. He later joined the United States Secret Service and became a highly decorated member. This led to his promotion to the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA). In the CIA, Simmons was recruited into a special division known as the U.S. Security Group, a task force with jurisdiction in all domestic and foreign situations, commanded by CIA Director Jason Wynn.
After being murdered during a mission in Botswana by Director Wynn, Simmons is sent to hell because of his life as an assassin. Making a deal with the devil, Simmons agrees to become a Hellspawn and serve Malebolgia if he is allowed to see his wife, Wanda, one last time. Malebolgia returns Simmons to the living realm, but with only the barest of memory, a badly burned body, and a watch dog, the Clown. Simmons is unaware that five years have passed. His wife has married his best friend, Terry Fitzgerald, and the two have a daughter, Cyan.
His life over, Simmons has two choices before him: follow Malebolgia, or renounce the devil. The two choices come in the form of Clown, a diminutive, portly, disgusting minor demon (who can transform into the huge, fanged, clawed Violator), and Cogliostro (Cog), an apparently homeless old man who knows more about Simmons (whom both call Spawn) and his situation than even he can know.
After Death and Rebirth
Spawn arrives on Earth in a daze, off-balance and disoriented. He has only vague recollections of his past and how he came to be. He knows his name was Al Simmons and that he died. He knows he made a deal with the devil to come back. Spawn returns to a world alien to him, he's lost five years. He finds that his best friend Terry and his ex-wife Wanda are married and have a daughter named Cyan. Spawn's first few adventures are very antihero in nature. He takes down street gangs and organized crime, but in a fairly brutal fashion. He kills a pedophillic serial killer. He fights an angel that was sent to kill him, and lives. As this occurs, he takes over the alleys that comprise "Rat City" and befriends the bums within it. His power is vast, and an odd bum named Cogliostro seems to know a lot about him.
Spawn's early battles take a huge toll on him. His first big test is against the mob enforcer, OvertKill, and it is an encounter he barely survives. Spawn narrowly escapes defeat at the hands of Angela, an angel who hunts Hellspawn. He is also nearly annihilated by the heavenly warrior known as The Anti-Spawn/Redeemer I, who unknown to him was his former boss Jason Wynn. His fight against The Curse goes far better, and he not only defeats him but makes an example of him by nailing him to the wall of the alleys as a warning to those who come into his territory.
Along the way he meets up with the magician, Harry Houdini, and learns a lot about magic and illusion while helping him save the world, which lead to Spawn taking a bullet to the face for Terry, Bobby helps fix the wound by stitching it shut with a shoelace. After this, Antonio "Tony Twist" Twistelli mistakenly pegs Terry as the culprit behind the Violator's mob-targeted killing spree. He sends a rebuilt and reprogrammed OvertKill--fresh from an embarrassing defeat in a crossover--after Fitzgerald, forcing Spawn to protect his friend and eventually revealing his true identity to Terry. Only a single shot from Twitch's gun, going through OvertKill's ear and disrupting his programming saves the day as the mafia supersoldier heads off to find Bedrock.
In a crossover with Youngblood, Chapel returns to find Al in the alleys and kills his friend Bobby. Chapel has decided he got a raw deal and blows his own head off in front of Spawn so that he can go to Hell and possibly take over. Al uses his powers to bring Bobby back to life. He's then caught up in Angela's trial in the Angela miniseries and goes to Heaven where his suit begins to freak out since it knows its behind enemy lines. This leaves his suit practically dead when he returns to Earth, in the heart of the Deep South. He has an encounter with the KKK and "helps" Eddie and Andy Frank with their abusive father while in Georgia. His return to New York was not pleasant. Spawn's encounter with a new Redeemer would not go well as this one was significantly more powerful than the last and his friend Bobby was taken away for study as his resurrection was noted as the first of its kind, a necroplasmic transferral. Spawn would attack a bastion of Heaven in the guise of a skyscraper to try to goad Heaven into returning his friend and the Redeemer would appear again to face him. His powers were seriously waning and his suit was acting erratically.
The first metamorphosis
After a nearly fatal encounter with the Redeemer, Spawn's costume evolved into a more advanced form. The formerly immaculate cape became ragged and shredded, and his costume lost its red coloring and became pure black and white. Spawn's gloves and boots also morphed, becoming heavily armored and covered with spikes. Spawn's costume was now much more powerful, and the cape and chains were capable of shapeshifting to a much greater degree. Spawn's costume lopped the hand off Redeemer's arm by itself during their second encounter, while Spawn simply watched.
Later, during an encounter with the Curse, Spawn's costume was surgically removed from his body. When the two were reunited, Spawn found that the costume was going wild, attempting to take control of him and use him for its own purposes. Spawn mentally wrestled with the costume for weeks, being warned by Cogliostro that prolonged use of his powers while the costume was in this state would result in it returning to Hell, dragging Spawn along with it. When Spawn decided to use his powers to cure Wanda's husband Terry Fitzgerald of his cancer, the costume responded the way Cog had warned it would.
Trapped in Hell, Spawn fought desperate battles against the denizens of the various circles of Hell, finally arriving at the foot of Malebolgia's throne. Malebolgia gloated that Spawn was becoming everything he'd hoped, and returned him to Earth. Spawn retained mastery of his costume, but was shaken by Malebolgia's taunts.
After issue 50
Spawn struggled to find a way to free himself from Hell's control and recapture his humanity. Attacks from both Heaven and Hell were coming faster and faster, and Spawn was on the verge of losing himself to the violence and the evil. Salvation arrived in the form of a mound of festering garbage - The Heap, an emissary of the Greenworld, a power equal to Heaven and Hell that Spawn had never encountered before. They endowed him with a host of new abilities that would enable him to overcome the worst both Heaven and Hell had to offer.
While these powers are not directly described, they appear to give Spawn control over all the elements and other aspects of the natural world. It was explained to him that the Greenworld did not care for the war of Heaven and Hell, but were growing increasingly agitated by the destruction brought about. They inflicted on him the pains of the Earth, and when he returned Spawn became "aware" of the world. Spawn did not utilize his powers however, other than listening to the Earth, until he was impaled on the pole of a large sign by the dark god Urizen (named after the tyrannical creator-figure in the personal mythology of Romantic poet–artist William Blake). Urizen was wreaking havoc on the world, and the Greenworld imbued him with a "gift" which, after recovering thanks to Angela, Spawn uses to contain Urizen. Spawn splits the ground open and imprisons Urizen within the Earth.
The new king of Hell
After defeating Urizen, Spawn learns that the dark god's release was orchestrated by Malebolgia, as part of an elaborate scheme to take total control of all the kingdoms of Hell. Having failed spectacularly, Malebolgia's power is at its lowest ebb. With the help of Angela, Spawn is able to return to Hell and finally destroy his demon master, although Angela's life is lost in the process. Though offered Malebolgia's crown by the sinister Mammon, Spawn declines both it and an offer to enter the gates of Heaven. Spawn instead turns his efforts towards stemming the torment of humanity and defeating the evil that exists on Earth.
Overwhelmed by the darkness on Earth, Spawn turns to his old mentor, Cogliostro, with a new plan. He will accept the crown of Hell, and then remake it, turning it from a dark realm of evil into a new paradise that will sweep away all sorrow and sadness on the Earth. No sooner do Spawn and Cog embark on this plan, then they are drawn into the lowest reaches of Hell, where Cog betrays Spawn during a moment of weakness, taking the crown of Hell for himself. Cog uses his newfound power to return Spawn to earth, apparently alive and well, back in the body of Al Simmons.
Wandering the Earth in a daze, Al Simmons is confronted by a young witch named Nyx. With Nyx's help, Al is reunited with his shadowy alter-ego, and Spawn is reborn on Earth. Seemingly human, with a human's frailty and vulnerability, when not shrouded in his costume, Spawn has lost much of his power, but continues with his mission to right the wrongs of the world and seek out peace of mind for himself. However, Mammon continues to plot against him from the shadows. After tempting and betraying Nyx, Mammon gains her magical power over the union between Al Simmons and Spawn, and uses it to rob Al of all of his memories. Al wanders the Earth, searching for something he feels, but cannot remember. During this wandering, Al unwittingly unleashes a band of angels known as the Forgotten, angels who were neutral, taking neither the sides of Heaven or Hell during the Fall. Al learns that Mammon is one of the Forgotten, and is far more powerful than Malebolgia ever was.
With the aid of the Greenworld, Spawn regains his lost memories, and something more. His costume metamorphoses again, seemingly becoming one with his necroplasmic body. Spawn is captured by Mammon and his demonic minions, and tortured horribly so that the secrets his body contains can be revealed. Spawn's discarded heart, torn from his chest in an earlier battle with the Disciple, Heaven's Warrior, transforms into a young boy named Chris. Chris, together with Sam and Twitch, rescue Spawn from Mammon's clutches and return him to Earth. Spawn learns that thousands of human souls are contained within his body, each one capable of being summoned in the form of a Hellspawn. As signs of the end of days wreak havoc across the world, Spawn must find a way to stave off Armageddon, and learn the true nature of Heaven, Hell, and the Earth.
Spawn learns that Wanda's twin children are the ones responsible for Armageddon. The twins, who have been displaying destructive and sadistic tendencies for months now, attempt to murder their entire family, when Spawn arrives to stop them. Spawn is unable to destroy the twins, and the unexpected arrival of Zera, the Queen of the Seraphim, reveals the awful truth - Jake Fitzgerald is God, and Katie Fitzgerald is Satan.
It is revealed that both God and Satan were removed from their respective kingdoms and reincarnated as human children by the all-powerful being known as Mother. Mother is the creator of the universe and all its worlds, and God and Satan are two of her many children. She regards them as disappointments, being consumed with destructive hatred towards one another. Mother, who has aided Spawn in the past under the guises of Kali, the Keeper of the Greenworld, and the Man of Miracles, warns Spawn that he alone has the potential to rise above God and Satan, and preserve the human race. She also warns that Armageddon cannot be stopped - it is Earth's destiny.
Spawn is entered into one last final test to prove if he is worthy to preserve the human race: The Disciple. Before his final test, the Mother told Spawn to trust Cyan because she is "wise beyond her years". She also reveals that The Disciple is actually the guard of the portal to the Garden of Eden, where Spawn must eat the Forbidden Fruit in order to save humanity. After Spawn blasts The Disciple into Eden and killed him, it is revealed that there are actually 11 more Disciples, who are based off the Twelve Apostles. Also, because Hellspawns are never meant to enter into the Garden of Eden, Spawn's life will fade away the longer he is in the garden. This is shown through a video game like counter, which Cyan sees through a laptop. With the help of Cyan and the souls within him, Spawn fights each of The Disciples, killing them off one by one as the counter continues to drop to zero until the final Disciple left is Judas, whom Spawn is about to kill. However, Cyan yells to Spawn to not kill him. Spawn, listening to what the Mother said and trusting Cyan, did not deal the final blow to Judas. Then Judas stabs Spawn through the heart and his counter reaches zero.
As Spawn lies slain, Mother appears and plucks a piece of fruit from the Tree of Life. She speaks with Judas, revealing that when she took the form of Jesus, Judas was his most beloved disciple, the only one who had the courage to betray him. For without his death, the life of Jesus would have had no greater meaning. Mother gives the power of the Forbidden Fruit to the lifeless Spawn, resurrecting him in a new form - his cloak and chains are gone, replaced with shining white wings. Mother explains that Cyan was right; Spawn needed to die in order to be resurrected and gain the power to rival God and Satan. Returning to Earth, Spawn finds New York totally destroyed by the Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse. The slain population of the Earth have become possessed by angels and demons, who are gathering for the final battle. As Spawn races to the place where Armageddon will be fought, he confronts Zera, the Queen of the Seraphim.
During this battle, Spawn shows Zera his true power as an equal to both God and Satan. Spawn defeats Zera and returns to the battle between Heaven and Hell with her head as a trophy. Spawn arrives at the battle as the last of Heaven's warriors are slain. He believes that he knows one of them. Searching the battle field, Spawn discovers that he knows one of the soldiers as Granny Blake. She realizes that she has been betrayed and mislead by her faith in God. Spawn faces off against the Hellspawn of Satan's army, declaring that the Earth is his. Calling him a traitor for breaking his oath, the Hellspawn from all the ages converge on their "brother." Spawn battles the Hellspawn, calling upon the earth to swallow them, returning them to Hell. Hearing of this, Satan sends all of his remaining warriors after Spawn. Fearing that Spawn will unbalance Armageddon, God does the same. These events are watched by Mammon and a cloaked figure, whom Mammon responds to as a subordinate. During their exchange it is implied that all is going according to their plan, and Mammon says that he should have never been doubted. As Heaven and Hell attack Spawn, he calls to himself all the power given to him by the Mother, and in a single display of power destroys the armies of Heaven and Hell, along with the rest of humanity.
Laughing, he dismisses his act as a way to halt the Armageddon itself, leaving God and Satan without soldiers to use in their battle. He then asks the Mother to restore his children to their former glory and powers, but refuses to fight them. They eventually incinerate Spawn, then proceed their endless battle... fighting by themselves, in a barren, scorched Earth.
The Reconstructed World
Spawn, now given the powers of a god and the protection of the Mother, gains the power to recreate Earth, restoring everyone to life, but leaving humanity every memory of the Rapture. Both God and Satan have no role in the "new" Earth, because they're trapped in their perception of a barren Earth until they cease their seemingly endless fight, and Spawn, with his last act as a god himself, closes every door between Hell, Heaven and Earth.
He then asks the Mother to turn him back into Al Simmons, convincing her into letting the former Spawn have the chance to win back Wanda and becoming a fatherly figure for Cyan. A now fully human Simmons returns to his former home, but facing the memories of the miscarriage he inflicted upon Wanda by beating her the last night before dying, he relinquishes humanity once more, accepting to go on in his death as the monster he was always thought to have been in life.
Realizing how Al Simmons himself, not Mammon, claimed the Hellspawn role as penance, Spawn, again in his "red-cowled" costume, once more takes residence in a deserted and barren Rat Alley.
Later a robed figure would tell Mammon of Spawn's defeating of Clown and closing the portal to hell, which he had wanted Spawn to do, and calls Spawn "my good and faithful servant."
Zera has returned. She is seen again now as a rotting decapitated head immersed in preservative liquids within a glass container. As she was one of God's favorites, she was granted immortality by God. Spawn is summoned by Voodoo priestess Mambo Suzanne while Zera is trying to possess Nyx. Zera uses Nyx's body to successfully do battle with Spawn. Mambo Suzanne, however uses the conflict as a distraction to shatter the glass containing Zera's head and throw the head to streets below. There, demon dogs devour the head until there is nothing left, thereby freeing Nyx from Zera's possession. This issue leads to the recovery of Nyx and Spawn's friendship as well as Nyx's recovery of her powers.
A tale of three brothers
In the next arc, "A Tale of Three Brothers" composed of the latest few issues but was the title that ran through issues #170-173, Ab and Zab create a literal hell house where visitors are forced to face their most heinous sins, due to demons called sin eaters that feed on the guilt by making their prey face the evil that they had done. A woman and a minister within the house are both caught in the delusions caused by the sin eaters, and slowly fed on by the demons. Spawn confronts Ab and Zab, but is faced with his own sin against Wanda and his unborn child. Unable to break free from the guilt, he is slowly fed on by a sin eater. Nyx however decides to intervene, overcoming a sin eater and breaking a sin eater's illusion that was subduing Spawn (it is revealed later on that Nyx is becoming more powerful). Spawn then tears apart many of the other sin eaters until he comes upon the minister who is being fed on by a sin eater.
It is then revealed that the minister is Al Simmons' brother, Richard, who was reliving his own worst sin. Spawn, who up to that moment had not yet recovered all his memories as Al Simmons since he became a Hellspawn, decides to allow Richard to relive his sin so that he can peer into his own past. It is then revealed that Mammon, under the guise of a man, Mr. Malefick, had a profound influence on Al Simmons' childhood. It was Mammon/Mr. Malefick (a constant visitor in the Simmons' household and close acquaintance of Al Simmons' mother) that tutored Al Simmons to torture and murder small animals at a very young age as well hurt his own body, seemingly grooming him to become his servant, who would feel neither glee nor pity in taking another being's life. Malefick had also influenced Richard Simmons to take drugs as well as introducing him to the drug dealer Weasel. It was only Marc Simmons that seemingly was able to save himself from Mammon's influence, but was unable to help his brothers. Richard Simmons' vision of his past climaxed with him stabbing and gravely injuring Weasel (with a knife that was given by Mammon/Malefick) while intoxicated with drugs. Richard calls his brothers to come and help him in his predicament. Al Simmons, not wanting him and his brothers to be implicated in the crime, decides against calling an ambulance that could save the drug dealer's life and instead pulls the knife from Weasel's body and kills him with it. Mammon/Malefick then appears sending the brothers home while he hides the drug dealer's body.
Finding that the sin eater was already killing Richard Simmons, Nyx breaks the illusion while Spawn kills the last sin eater. Spawn then asks Richard about their parents, finding that Richard had neither thought of nor heard from them in years, Spawn determines that Mammon had blocked the memory of their parents and prevented the brothers from even thinking about their parents. Spawn then leaves, but not before Nyx places a spell preventing Ab and Zab from leaving the building and Spawn promises to come back for his brother. Spawn then finds his parents' home which Mammon had hidden under a spell and within it his parents, who were trapped there for many years. There, he is greeted by his mother, who recognizes Al Simmons even in the form of Spawn while Al Simmons' father is shocked.
Al Simmons' mother had conspired with Mammon to give birth to a Hellspawn that would be greater than those which came before, that would remake the world and place all of existence under Mammon/Malefick's power. Al Simmons' father falls into grief for not being able to stop his wife from what she and Mammon had done to his son. When Spawn wonders why his father was chosen to bear him, his father points out a journal from his great-grandfather, passed down from generation to generation... a journal that Al Simmons' mother had prevented her husband from showing their children.
As Spawn is given the journal by his father, Richard Simmons is seen providing the demons Ab and Zab some food, then retiring to his quarters to recall a time in his childhood when he would pretend to be asleep and his father would come weeping and reciting a prayer beside his bed. Mammon/Malefick then appears. Feeling that there can be no redemption for himself, Richard follows Mammon down to a door whereupon entering, Richard is swallowed into the bowels of hell.
Spawn #174-175 tells the story that is found in the journal. Francis Parker (who later took the name "Henry Simmons"), Al Simmons' great grandfather, was a deserter who was to be lynched alongside another man, Jeremy Winston, in the town of Bane. Winston, a preacher, had been framed for murdering his family and was condemned to death. Mammon approached both men offering them a chance for revenge against those who have wronged them, an offer which Parker refused but Winston accepted. During the proceedings of the execution, Mammon causes a malfunction that ultimately saves Parker's life, however, Winston is killed. A short time thereafter, Winston is resurrected as the Gunslinger Spawn and he proceeds to slaughter every resident in the town of Bane, sparing only Francis Parker, whom Mammon ordered be kept alive. The Gunslinger Spawn confines Parker to a pine casket belonging to a now deceased resident of Bane, Henry Simmons, and floats the coffin down a river to an awaiting Mammon, who tells Parker that one of his descendants will become the Hellspawn that destroys the world.
The Monster in the Bubble
The story returns to the Simmons house where the television reports mysteriously reveal a new case involving the death of American comic book artist. The artist was a deformed teenager named Kenneth Erskine, a man that had been unable to leave the protection of a bubble dome due to a medical affliction. Though he didn't die during the end of the world, he was affected by a leak inside his sterile bubble that gives him the power to project anything he draws as real. Al's brother, Marc, is the lead detective of the case, and the only one not to be corrupted by Mammon's influence. Nyx and Al leave to assist Marc, believing that it was Mammon who sent the transmission to the television about the case. As soon as Al and Nyx leave, Mammon and a figure in a cloak with visible vampire-like fangs suddenly appears in the house and proceeds to drain Al's father of blood. The cloaked figure's identity seems to be known by Simmons' mother as she smiles after Mammon asks her if she knew who the creature is. Spawn fails to save the Erskine's next victim. The last frame of the final part of the arc leaves Spawn doubting himself, unable to save a few people from dying - much less the entire world.
The continuation of "The Monster in the Bubble" from the last issue left Spawn utterly helpless against Erskine's psychic projection of a tentacled creature, that had impaled him multiple times. Erskine's projection suddenly shows features of Mammon, continually coaxing and tempting Spawn to accept death. Nyx intervenes by stabbing the creature with a sword, gaining the creature's attention, but leading her to become the creature's next target. She then telepathically contacts Marc Simmons, begging him to shoot Erskine. Erskine relents and ceases his attack causing the creature to disappear, allowing Nyx and Al to go to the hospital where Erskine is held. Spawn is faced with the predicament however of whether or not to cause Erskine's death, threatening to enter the bubble dome if Erskine does not reveal the whereabouts of Mammon, whom Spawn believed was pulling the strings. Mammon then appears to complicate the situation allowing Erskine to complete his last murder using a psychic projection of a woman to attack the last victim in his home. Mammon reveals that it was he who taught Erskine to use his powers. Upon killing his last victim, Erskine then proceeds to commit suicide, leaving his worldly possessions in the name of the doctor who had taken care of him. Spawn then proceeds to attack Mammon, and ask what Mammon wanted from him. Mammon then says that he wants nothing from Spawn, saying that Spawn had lost everything that made him special, only wanting Spawn to accept that it is his time. It is then revealed that Mammon had been using Erskine's powers to project a psychic projection of himself, and he was actually in another location. As the psychic projection melts away, Spawn is left kneeling, accepting the belief that whatever he tries to do goes wrong, that he is no longer needed by the world.
Cyan, the daughter of Wanda Blake and Terry Fitzgerald, is having terrible visions. Her visions seem to be targeted mostly at her mother. Cyan sees her mother covered in blood every time they see each other. She envisions the pain that her savior, Spawn, is suffering through. Her visions are confirmed to be true.
Spawn, having been infected by the vampire Severin, struggles with his symbiotic costume inside his own conscience while Nyx and Marc stand by unable to help in any way. The costume insists that although Spawn is the host, the costume has always been in control of the Hellspawn's powers. The costume is angered by Spawn's actions, namely deciding to throw away the powers of a god. The costume begins fighting with Spawn, now returned to his Al Simmons form. The costume tries to convince Simmons that his wife Wanda Blake had betrayed him while they were married. The costume insists that Wanda decided not to have Simmons' child because she hated Simmons. The costume continues to taunt Simmons, bringing up Wanda's marriage to Simmons' best friend Terry Fitzgerald. Eventually, Simmons' accepts what the costume has been saying and returns to consciousness.
The setting shifts to Mammon's residence where it is revealed that Mammon was guiding Spawn's costume into turning against him. Mammon is accompanied by Morana and Morana's foster parents Lucian and Daciana, leaders of the original vampires. Mammon orders Morana to prepare himself for what he must do next, which is unknown at this point.
The scene shifts back to Cyan's bedroom. There, her visions tell her that something terrible is about to occur. For the first time in the story she is afraid of Spawn, fearing his return will be to murder someone close to her. Cyan stands, approaches her closet door (which is covered with blood), she opens the door and finds Spawn standing before her. Cyan looks at him and asks, "You're going to kill my mom, aren't you?"
Forewarned by Granny Blake, Cyan plunges a knife wrapped with the shoelace once bound to Spawn's face into him. The knife, mystically charged, is able to rip a wound into the symbiotic entity, plunging Simmons in a delusional world, based on his memories with Wanda, to settle his unresolved issues with her in a more peaceful manner.
They are transported into a boat in a lake, similar to the location where Al Simmons and Wanda Blake once had a boat ride together. Spawn talks with Wanda, stating that he wished to move on, but couldn't due to their connection and what he had done. Wanda asks if Spawn could move on if she forgave him for the miscarriage of their child to which Spawn responds to do it. But Wanda states that she couldn't forgive him, but also that if anything of her late husband is within him, that she loves him. Spawn, contemplating what to do, feels the pain of the knife that Cyan had stabbed on his chest and attempts to extract it, but upon doing so finds hanging from the shoelace, his wedding ring, the symbol of his bond with Wanda. Al Simmons is then able to reject his costume and bring the boat to the side of the lake, finding that both Cyan and Nyx were able to follow them into that location. But upon getting on shore, the symbiote resurfaces and attacks Nyx.
The symbiote is revealed as retaining its sentience and independence, and to have always worked for Mammon, offering full collaboration to his efforts to breed a perfect Hellspawn in exchange for being free to roam the Earth. Since Al Simmons is no longer needed, K7 Leetha merges with Nyx, in retaliation for its past enslavement, gaining full control over Nyx's actions and torturing her by imposing its will on hers. The symbiote attempts to kill Wanda and Cyan, but Mammon stops it by promising to bestow it with new powers and a new host if it keeps obeying. Mammon then leads the whole party, now formed by the new She-Spawn, Al Simmons in a human, unscarred, body, Wanda and Cyan, to a distant castle. He then unveils how Wanda and Al were part of a master plan to breed the perfect Hellspawn, thus connecting Al Simmons to all previous Hellspawns, coming from Al and Wanda's bloodlines, and the Armageddon was simply a convenient way to put Malebolgia, God and Satan out of the picture, paving the way for his rule over the Universe.
On the way to the castle, Mammon reveals that Al Simmons has now outlived his usefulness, as a new, better host is already prepared to take his place, loyal to his plans and more powerful than Al Simmons ever was. The host is finally unveiled to Wanda and Al Simmons as Morana, their miscarried child, stolen by Mammon the day in which Al Simmons brought Wanda to the hospital after beating her.
Morana, now a full grown woman, waits in the castle, bathing in the blood of virgin youths as a part of her coming of age rite. After that, Morana is restored to her human self, ready to meet her parents for the first time. Renouncing them as she claims they've abandoned her, she takes over the K7 symbiote from Nyx and plans to feed over Wanda's and Al's souls.
Since Nyx is powerless, and the Mother of Miracles is away from the earthly plane for ten thousand years, Cyan is pressured by Grandma Blake's apparition to push her precognitive powers to the limits, where she meets an old woman writing down a book in a dilapidated house. Ready to die, yet willing to help Cyan in her role, she gives Cyan a message for Spawn.
Returned to Limbo, Cyan pressures Spawn into calling down the Legion, or at least the still living souls of it, numbering a mere dozen. Even if Christopher claims that this new incarnation of the Legion is made by the strongest members, stronger even than the Hellspawn, Cyan shares with Nyx how her plan actually involves the Legion being soundly defeated by Morana.
The events unfold the way the old wise woman is writing them in her book, and despite their impressive powers, the Legion are slayed in front of a guilty, helpless, Cyan, until only Christopher is left, ready to go on in a new afterlife, beyond Heaven and Hell. Al Simmons, taunted by Mammon about his losses, from the happy family he could have had up to his life, denounces Morana, refusing her as his daughter. In retaliation, Morana savagely attacks her own servants, and her father.
Using the distraction in her favor, Cyan teaches a binding spell to Nyx, so powerful to be able to trap Morana and Mammon in Limbo for eternity. In an ontological paradox, Cyan claims the spell was taught to her by the wise old woman, who received the words by an older Nyx, in the future. The spell is successful, and Morana is left trapped, and pleading Wanda to be saved.
Al Simmons convinces Wanda to return to the earthly plane with Cyan and Nyx, and after giving her a last farewell, and an apology for the life they never could have had together, he stays behind, searching for a way to be reborn as a new individual, no more a tool of Heaven and Hell. Journeying in a hellish dimension paved with discarded souls, Simmons begins his last voyage, a voyage described by the wise old woman, who's revealed to be an older Cyan, as a path of retribution, turning Spawn in the biggest anti-hero known on Earth, both hero and villain, destined to bring on the final downfall of Heaven and Hell, and enact his final vengeance over God and Satan.
As Al traverses the land of discarded souls he prepares to enter the human world. Escaping Hell, he arrives back in the alleys of New York City. Al Simmons searches for one spot in particular (perhaps the exact spot where he returned to Earth as a newly created Hellspawn at the beginning of the comic), once he finds the spot he is looking for he gathers his remaining Hellspawn energy and blows his own head off. The one "true" way to effectively kill a Spawn.
Al Simmons is reborn as the "Omega Spawn", he has unlimited Necro-power and a brand new, super-powerful, female sybiote costume. He has been given complete and total control over all of Hell by Satan and he plans to combine the forces of Hell and Earth to destroy Heaven and imprison God. He has released all the super-vilians from Hell and all over the world they are attacking the heroes of Earth including The Witchblade host, Sara Pezzini, The Darkness (Jackie Estacado) and the Youngblood Group. Omega Spawn First contacts Jim in his apartment, Jim senses him and transforms into Spawn. Al explains himself and his plans to Jim and also reconizes Jim`s suit as K7-Leetha (who somehow got out of her imprisionment with Mammon and Morana). Al attacks Jim after offering him a seat at his side (which Jim rejected) and said that he, along with all the heroes of the world will suffer as Hell rules supreme and Heaven is destroyed and God is imprisioned. During the fight Jim teleports to a hospital. He eventually makes his way to the other heroes and explains the situation. Meanwhile, all the villians of Hell including Chapel(the very man who killed Al) and The Curse converge on Liberty Island.
One night, Sara is visited by an an angel. The angel is actually the new incarnation of The Redeemer. For associating with a Hellspawn, the Reedeemer prepares to kill Sara, but just before he does, he spots a cross necklace and realizes that she is a Christian. The next day, Marc meets with Jim and introduces Jim to a crippled Vietnam war veteran. Jim is displeasured by this and leaves. Later, Marc returns to Sara's apartment and shows Jim and Sara that the veteran was cured. He then reveals that he had been following Jim's story and found that everyone Jim came close to was cured if they had a sickness.
That night, Clown returns and meets with Jim on the building roof. As they chat, the Reedeemer attacks them, and reveals that the angel that Spawn was attacked by during "Endgame" was his wife, and he had come looking for her. Clown explains that they killed her, and the Reedeemer becomes mad with rage. Spawn and Clown battle with the Reedeemer, but Spawn is knocked off the building, though he catches onto the side of the building. At that moment, as Clown is ready to face off with the Reedeemer, Clown summons his vampires to kill the Reedeemer. The Reedeemer is killed by the vampires, and Spawn returns to the building. Clown asks Spawn if they could team up, and Spawn agrees, quoting "you seem to be the only one I can trust these days".
Later, the man who hired the "flaming head" kidnapper hires a towering muscled man named Malcolm (who is revealed to be "Patient 46") to take out Jim. The muscled man is shocked when he finds out that Jim is Patient 47, since he was told that he was "the last one". Meanwhile, as Jim leaves Sara's apartment, he meets Marc, who Jim attacks. However, Marc says that Jim will need a friend, and reveals that the job of bringing the old man that Jim healed in the previous issue to Jim was forced upon him by his boss after he tries to convince his boss to run a story on Jim being a faith healer. The next day, when the old man is healed, Marc's boss attempts to force Marc to continue running a story on Jim, but Marc is reluctant, believing that Jim needs some space. Marc's boss lashes out at him, and Marc quits. Jim then walks away from Marc and says that he never wants to see him again, but Marc counters by saying "in about five seconds you'll say otherwise." Jim opens the door of the building, and discovers that there are a large number of reporters outside wanting to run a story on Jim. It is then revealed that after Marc quit his job, he calls up some television channels to tell them about Jim, in an attempt to get back at his boss by getting the television channels to try to run a story on Jim instead of his former employers. As Jim is trying to get through the crowd of reporters, he encounters Malcolm. Jim morphs into Spawn and battles Malcolm at a construction site, where Malcolm reveals that he was also a "patient", and that he can't let the media see Jim in his current state. In a collision of both Malcolm and Spawn's attacks, the entire construction site is destroyed. Jim is then seen hovering over the wreckage, with the media watching and recording the event.
Jim is unable to get free from the swarm of reporters and resorts to flying away. Sam, Twitch, and a detective who has been working with them named Rowand witness the event, but Twitch is then distracted by Clown, who he pursues down the alleyway. Twitch catches Clown in the alley, but Clown morphs into Violator, Sam suffers a heart attack and Rowand is distracted by this, leaving Twitch alone with Violator. At the same time across town, Jim is packing up his belongings, ready to leave Sara's apartment to get away from the media. Marc gives Jim his business card and Jim leaves for the alleyways. Jim returns to his throne in the alley and is met by The Freak, who tells Jim that he will use Jim to "punish those who have betrayed me in my absence", and that Jim must choose Clown's side or The Freak's side. Jim morphs into Spawn and begins to battle The Freak, who reveals that he knows what Clown has been doing, and also reveals that he can drain Spawn's power incredibly quickly. Clown appears and morphs into Violator, before biting The Freak's arm off, and The Freak reveals that he controls many powerful Spawns. He then unleashes Omega Spawn from the Image United crossover, and Jim attacks him. As Jim is about to attack The Freak again, Clown stops him and tells Spawn that The Freak is his problem, and that something is wrong and not to go near him. Spawn asks why, and The Freak replies that Clown is afraid. The Freak's eyes turn green and he begins to morph, saying "it's time I show you who I really am!". The Freak reveals his true identity to be Malebolgia. After being defeated by Al Simmons, the Lords of Hell cut off Malebolgia's power and set up "road blocks" to insure that he never returned. Betrayed, Malebolgia swears to regain his true power and form and kill all those who tried to prevent his return, including the Violator who had sided with Malebolgia's greatest rival, Mammon, after Malebolgia's fall. Malebolgia orders Violator to tell of his return in order to spread fear. He then teleports, leaving a skeptical and terrified Violator alone in the wastelands of Hell. Malebolgia is seen approaching an asylum or prison inmate, demanding the prisoner return something of his.
Spawn is confronted by a new nemesis in the form of the vampire lord aptly named, Bludd. On the surface, it appears that Bludd is a rogue element, seeking to control Jim by withholding pieces of Jim's past from him. Secretly, however, Bludd has become partners with the Clown and the pair conspire to manipulate Jim and prepare for the return of Malebolgia. Jim's newfound status as a powerful healer gains him all sorts of notoriety. During a stint on a television talk show, Jim heals a boy with sever mental problems before a live audience. However, this kind of attention brings unwelcome attention to his close friends, particularly Sara. While trying to escape a crowd of paparazzi, a photographer is hit by an incoming bus. Sara pleads with Jim to save the man, but he at first refuses. Appauled by his inhumane disregard for the man's life, Sara chastises Jim until he agrees to heal the man. Due to the man being on the verge of death, Jim unleashes unprecidented power before flashing cameras and video recorders in order to revive the fallen man. This catapults Jim to world wide fame.
From atop a nearby building, a trio of vampires watches as Jim preforms the "miracle." Their conversations are interrupted by the Clown who recruits the trio, identified as "The Old Guard," and gives them the task of testing the new Hellspawn's powers. Clown then goes to meet with Jim, who has teleported Sara to her apartment and now waits in the alleys. Jim berates Clown for not being around when Jim needs him. The Clown voices his disapproval of Jim's basking in the limelight, but changes tactics and suggests Jim use it to protect himself from the forces of Heaven and Hell. The armies won't risk exposing themselves in front of the human world.
Secretly, Malebolgia plots his return to power. He journeys from Russia to Mexico in search of two old companions, humans. These humans were given fragments of Malebolgia's powers to hold onto in exchange for wealth and power, on the agreement that they would return the powers when they were requested. These keepers of "Malebolgia's Flame" hesitated to return the powers, much to Malebolgia's irritation. Angered by the men's defiance, Malebolgia used optimal force to retract the Flames from them, even promising the second keeper that he would make the extraction more painful than necessary. The retraction caused the deaths of both men.
In a secret conference with the Old Guard, Bludd sends them to confront the new Spawn without the Clown's knowledge. Upon revealing the meeting to Clown, Bludd asserts himself as the leader in their arrangement. Clown agrees to follow Bludd, but only if Bludd can prove himself to be a reliable leader. Clown relays his fears of Malebolgia's return and demands that the two partners be prepared.
In the alleys, the Old Guard confront Spawn, sitting upon the abandoned throne of former Hellspawn, Al Simmons. After the Old Guard establish that Jim and his symbiote are a powerful threat, the trio shifts their forms into those of monsterous beasts. The Old Guard attack Spawn, who seems unaffected by their attacks. Spawn eventually sinks into the shadows and begins to dispatch the vampire one by one. After the bloody slaughter of the Old Guard, Detective Twitch Williams arrives in the alleys looking for Al. Instead he finds Jim, now blood thirsty from the freshly murdered vampires. Jim threatens Twitch, to which Twitch holds Jim at gunpoint and orders him under arrest.
Far across the globe Vatican City, the Pope recieves an urgent phone call.
Original and current powers
Spawn's body is quite dense, weighing over four hundred pounds, and is composed completely of necroplasm. This gives him super strength and high degree of durability. While he still has internal organs, they are non-functional, and their damage/destruction does not hinder Spawn in the least. These organs re-appear when he magically regenerates his wounds. This may be due to Spawn's inability to let go of his human self, retaining his human organs even though he no longer requires them.
Spawn wears a living symbiotic costume, Leetha of the 7th House of K (aka: K7-Leetha). While wearing it the host assumes a dominant role over his suit. His cape, spikes, chains, and skulls are all part of an organism bonded to his central nervous system that will protect Spawn even if he is unconscious. Violator once said the suits feed on souls. This is true, as the suit is a K7 model which is one of the pureblood breeds that siphons the souls of those it kills and sends them straight to Hell to bolster Malebolgia's army. The K7 model is a stronger, more refined symbiote which makes this Spawn stronger than many that came before him and some that have come after him such as Billy Kincaid who was once bonded to the less powerful K2-Myrlu. While it is not known exactly what effect the consumption of souls has on the hellspawn's uniform it is likely that it helps the suit evolve over time. Violator was obviously upset that Spawn not only had the power to regenerate (called "The Gift") but that his suit was able to move to a higher necrostate at a completely unprecedented pace. There are nine different necro-states, during which time the suit goes into a dormant hibernation stage to mutate and evolve. When it awakens it is more powerful and if the suit evolves faster than the host's ability to control his suit then the suit will assume the dominant role.
The true source of the costume is the necroplasm in Spawn's body, which it feeds off of. It is possible for Spawn to draw this energy back when he needs it, using it to power his abilities without draining his own reserves. The costume can also feed off evil energy from the physical world, feeding off the ambient evil of people, animals (mainly carrion insects, but also wolves and bats) and even certain parts of the city.
Spawn has vast magical powers. In the issues before issue #50, Spawn had a limited power supply or "9999". Each time Spawn used his energy, the counter would drain. Because of this reason, he relied primarily on his costume's natural abilities in fights. Other than the counter, the only limit was Spawn's imagination. Though he always tried not to expend a lot of magic, he has been shown using it for a variety of effects including resurrecting the dead, firing blasts of necroplasmic energy, teleportation, shapeshifting, and curing the sick.
Spawn still retains the military training and weapons expertise from his days as a soldier and thus frequently uses guns as an alternative to his magic.
Spawn has an ability to "feel" or "sense" misery, pain and hatred as a gift/punishment given to him by The Keeper, an agent of the Emerald Parliament of Greenworld. He is aware, even subconsciously when someone is attacked or murdered because he has gained a further affinity with the creatures of the night and shadows and through them experiences the anguish of all mankind. Spawn typically travels in the shadows, even "flying" on occasion. He is often described as notoriously difficult to spot, often only caught out of the corner of one's eye as just a streak of red (his cape). Spawn can also transform into a swarm of bats and transports from place to place. He has done this on several occasions. Recently, Spawn has shown that he contains an unknown number of lost souls who can share his Hellspawn abilities that are collectively known as The Legion. Detective Twitch theorized that the souls that Spawn carries are those that died during the same hour that Al Simmons was killed, and that there could be as many as 6,000 souls within him. It seems that the power from these souls is the reason Spawn was uncontrollable by Malebolgia, and often referred to as "The One". With the help of a young Spawn (Christopher) he is able to summon them to aid him in his quest to stop Armageddon.
Following Issue #161, the Man of Miracles had given him fruit from the Tree of Life and propelled his power to relative-omnipotent levels, enabling him to rival God and Satan. Now with the powers equal to both God and Satan, Spawn is the third power in the battle of Armageddon. Spawn has apparent control over the Earth itself, using it to his will when in battle against both armies. Spawn used the Earth to swallow all other Hellspawn and imprison them back in Hell.
- Skin: African-American as Al Simmons, black with a white stripe as The Hellspawn (Necroplasm)
- Eye Color: green (glowing) as The Hellspawn, brown as Al Simmons
- Costume: Black Armor (usually all over, but the head piece is a mask and is often removed) with "M" shaped white stripe on chest and backside, red cloak, skull emblems, and chains. After having his memory wiped by Mammon, the suit has morphed again, taking on a more organic appearance. The suit is capable of evolving and there is no telling how it may change over time or how powerful it may become.
He has kept a hole in his chest given to him by The Curse as a ruse to other villains who hit him in to same spot.
In recent issues, Spawn has transformed yet again. His flowing red cape is gone, replaced with a pair of angelic white wings. The suit still covers his entire body, but has taken on a much more organic appearance. The suit does not apear to produce chains anymore, but still creates spiked gauntlets around his hands and forearms area.
Powers and Abilities
CIA Training, ninja training, assassin training
Other than K7-Leetha, Al has used stolen military weapons to conserve on his energy.
Almost unstoppable, Spawn is unable to die outside of a patch of alley known as "The Deadzone" unless beheaded by a weapon of heaven. The "Deadzone" is the small patch of Earth that is Heaven's domain. In that small stretch of alley, Spawn has no power thus making him an ordinary person. Spawn has, however, used this area to perform an exorcism, but the few times he has ventured there, the results were nearly fatal. Aside from divine wrath, Spawn can regenerate (given a considerable expenditure of energy) and recover from virtually any injury, including massive organ damage, and even partial dismemberment.
- Decapitation - Supposed to be the only way to definitively kill some Hellspawn.
- Heavenly Forged Weapons, such as Angelic Lances, Whips, Daggers, etc.
- Celestial Fire - Such as that wielded by The Redeemers and The Disciple
- Wiccan Magic - Such as that used by Nyx but he has to be willing to submit to it.
- Heaven - His presence in Heaven, or in safe-zones of Heaven weaken him and his costume because of his nature as a hellborn warrior.
- Greenworld - He has no power in the ethereal realm of Greenworld
Many of these weaknesses appear to have been entirely removed, as shown by his conflict with Zera, who was the favorite warrior of God in the Amageddon story arc. Despite being armed with heavenly power and weaponry, and even after almost completely bisecting him, Zera was unable to kill Spawn. Since becoming nigh-omnipotent as of issue #161, Spawn no longer has weaknesses.
- No special notes.
- No trivia.
Appearances in Other Media
- In the Spawn film adaptation Al Simmons/Spawn is played by Michael Jai White. In the comics Al Simmons is killed by Chapel (from the team Youngblood) but in the film he is killed by Jessica Priest which later in the comics is retcon.
- In the HBO series Todd McFarlane's Spawn and the upcoming unrelated new show Spawn: The Animation, Al Simmons/Spawn is voiced by Keith David.
Spawn has starred in several video games:
- Todd McFarlane's Spawn: The Video Game (1995) (SNES)
- Spawn: The Eternal (1997) (PlayStation)
- Spawn (1999 video game) (1999) (Game Boy Color)
- Spawn: In the Demon's Hand (2000) (Dreamcast, Arcade)
- Spawn: Armageddon (2003) (Xbox, PlayStation 2, and Nintendo GameCube)
- Spawn appeared as a special guest in the Xbox version of Soulcalibur II (2003). McFarlane also created the character Necrid.
- In the game Segagaga, the development teams assembled by the player are charged with creating various games, which are both parodies of Sega titles and of properties foreign to them. One of these is a parody of Spawn, called "Sppon".
- Appearances of Al Simmons
- Character Gallery: Al Simmons
- Fan-Art Gallery: Al Simmons
- Quotations by Al Simmons
Discover and Discuss
- Search News for: · ·
- Search Forums for: · ·
Links and References
- Spawn.com - Official Spawn website
- Image Comics - Official Image Comics website
- Spawn® Armageddon - Namco/Spawn® Armageddon
- Now Playing Magazine - Interview with Todd McFarlane about the animated series