Melanie was a resident of Toronto, Canada who one day went with a friend on a trip to Buffalo where they had some drinks at a local bar while they waited for their dates for the evening. Unfortunately for Melanie, she caught the eye of Zebediah Killgrave, the Purple Man, who was immediately smitten with her. Using his mind control abilities, Killgrave bent her will to his own and Melanie instantly agreed to marry him, and they where wed less than an hour later. Melanie was nothing more than Killgrave's puppet for months, until he realized he had developed genuine feelings for her. Hoping she felt the same way, Killgrave released her from his control. Melanie however was absolutely shocked and horrified, running off as soon as she came to her senses.
Melanie returned to Toronto, where she soon discovered she was pregnant. Carrying the child to term, she was overjoyed when she saw her newborn daughter Kara had normal, pink skin instead of her father's trademark purple. Raising Kara on her own, Melanie never told Kara who her real father was.
Melanie Killgrave was created by Bill Mantlo and Dave Ross. She first appeared 1986's Alpha Flight #41.
Major Story Arcs
It's Not Easy Being Purple
Melanie's daughter Kara lived a relatively normal life until at the age of 13 her skin suddenly turned purple while she was at a party. Distraught, Kara rushed home and tried to scrub the purple off her skin in the middle of the night, waking up her sleeping mother. Melanie was initially stunned when she saw her daughter's new complexion, but she quickly overcame her shock and tried to comfort Kara. She then explained Kara's changes by telling her about her father, Zebediah Killgrave.
A week after she'd discovered her origins, Kara stole her mother's credit card and ran away from home to have some fun. Renting a suite at a famous hotel, Kara inadvertently discovered her powers to control other people and used them to make her longtime celebrity crush, Jean-Paul Beaubier, obey her every command. Eventually realizing that she needed to learn better control of her powers, Kara had Jean-Paul take her to Alpha Flight, where he served as the hero known as Northstar.
Talisman of Alpha Flight unfortunately suggested that the team should either confine or kill Kara because of the danger she posed, causing Kara to panic and use her powers to briefly control the entire team and have Madison Jeffries fly her back home. Having been worried sick, Melanie was thrilled to have her missing daughter return to her, but became angry when she realized Kara had inherited powers similar to that of her father and was using them to get her way just like he would. Melanie and Kara argued, resulting in Kara leaving again. Exasperated, Melanie cursed the Purple Man for laying his curse upon their daughter.
As soon as she was alone, Melanie was abducted by henchmen of the Auctioneer. The Auctioneer used her as an incentive to force Kara to cooperate in his attempt to auction off Kara and Jeffries as living weapons. Having contained Kara in a way to prevent her from using her mind control powers backfired on the Auctioneer however, as it released Jeffries from Kara's control and he quickly used his powers to literally blow the roof off the auction hall. Alpha Flight spotted the explosion while they were looking for Jeffries and Northstar rushed in and brought Melanie to safety. When she asked him how she could ever repay him, Northstar told her to thank him by placing Kara in as distant a boarding school as possible. After Kara defeated the Auctioneer with one of her suggestions, she and Melanie accompanied Alpha Flight to their base on Tamarind Island. There, she watched as her daughter used her powers to do good, by forcing troubled Alpha Team member Roger Bochs to merge with his Box armor before he died. Kara was then officially inducted into Alpha Flight as the first recruit of the new Beta Flight division. Initially wary of her daughter becoming a superhero, Melanie was persuaded by Heather Hudson the Vindicator, who assured her that no one in Canada would be better equipped to help Kara.