For the Golden Age Patriot see: The Patriot
Elijah is the grandson of the black Captain America, Isaiah Bradley. After Steve Rogers was given his Super Soldier Serum, the government had tried other variations with little success and Eli's grandfather was that success. However, Isaiah Bradley was left with a child-like state of mind as the experimental serum had affected his thought process over the years.
When a young Kang sought out help under the guise of Iron Lad, Elijah felt compelled to assist him and prove his family's worth. Claiming to also have the Super Soldier Serum in his blood, Elijah in fact used the designer drug M.G.H. (Mutant Growth Hormone) to gain temporary superhuman powers. He then took the identity of Patriot and founded the Young Avengers along with Iron Lad, Hulkling and Asgardian.
After receiving grievous injuries during a fight between Skrulls and Kree for the rights to Hulking, his grandfather gave him a necessary blood transfusion, giving Elijah the powers he originally pretended he had. He demonstrated these while helping his teammates to clean the remains of Avenger's Mansion.
Although Eli Bradley first appeared in a small cameo role with no lines in Red, White and Black #7, the character was better defined by Allan Heinberg and Jim Cheung as part of the acclaimed launch of the Young Avengers series. Like the other original members of the team, he debuted as a complete mystery with his original costume disguising the fact that he was black. This, along his heritage, was not revealed until the third issue of the series.
Heinberg reportedly based Eli's usage of M.G.H. on his own history with steroid use, having wanted to write about the experience in some way and finding Eli and M.G.H. to be a suitable vehicle for that.
Patriot debuted seemingly as the reckless loner archetype of the Young Avengers team, leading up to the discovery by everyone that he was abusing M.G.H. to be a superhero a little more than halfway through the Young Avengers series. This humiliation led to him briefly deciding to quit as Patriot and go back to his old life. However, he quickly returned when Hulkling was in need of help and displayed a new self-confidence that led to him stepping into the role of the team's leader in a dramatic shift from his initial role on the team.
Major Story Arcs
For further information: Civil War
The Young Avengers were soon faced with a difficult choice along with the rest of superhero community because of the Superhuman Registration Act. Elijah and his friends, along with the rest of the super-human community were drawn into the Civil War, and made the decision to join Captain America and his Secret Avengers. During the course of the war Patriot and his team discovered the whereabouts of the Runaways. Patriot took the information to Captain America, expecting aid to be sent to their fellow heroes. When Captain America declined, because of a lack of resources, Patriot defied a direct order and led his team to find them.
Upon the Young Avengers arrival, they were greeted by the youngest Runaway Molly. Frightened by their arrival Molly attacked them, and passed out from use of her powers. Patriot carried the young girl to the rest of her team. Due to misunderstanding's because of Molly's condition and the interactions between Vision and Victor the two teams began to fight. After stopping Hawkeye and Nico from fighting, Patriot was able to get them to work with him to put an end to the conflict. As Patriot and the others talked, discussing the current war and other events, a Kree soldier was sent to abduct some of the young heroes. The Kree attacked and managed to put the majority of the team members down, knocking Patriot away from the fight. Realizing that some of their teammates had been taken the two teams decide to work together to retrieve them.
After successfully infiltrating the Cube to retrieve their teammates, Patriot leads the young heroes against the Kree, creating a diversion for Vision to lead the others to safety. As a pitched battle breaks out; Nhor-Vell once again attacks the two teams. In the end they are able to repair the damage that's been done to Nhor and escape from the facility. Patriot is surprised when Nico and her team decides not to accompany them back. He leads the Young Avengers back to Captain America's forces. Patriot was present during the final battle of the Civil War fighting alongside Captain America's forces. Patriots team didn't manage to fully escape the war unscathed, Stature decided to join Iron Man and his Pro-Registration forces. Even after Captain America's surrender, Patriot and the Young Avengers continued their war on crime, without joining the Initiative.
Leading the Young Avengers
After the events of the superhero Civil War, Elijah went through a tough period. He felt horrible about Steve's fate, and was doubting his identity as a hero. After witnessing Bucky leaving his home, he went inside to find out why he'd been there. He found that Caps former sidekick had come to pay his respects to his grandfather. Elijah decided to talk to Bucky and see if he could help him. Calling Hawkeye, the two went to Billy's house where he used his powers to open a portal to Bucky. They found him in an A.I.M. facility fighting drones, they jumped into battle beside him helping him to defeat his foes. After a few quick words, Bucky left. Patriot was distraught, though Hawkeye was able to help him understand Bucky's message, and revealed that he would be able to find him. Using the tracer that Kate had placed on his bike, Eli managed to track Bucky down. When he found him, the two former sidekicks had a long conversation. They discussed not only Steve, but what it meant to be an American hero, and how best to proceed. They then bonded further as Bucky told him stories of the original Patriot.
Over the next few weeks Patriot's teammates would have similar experiences, and he would have to do his part as a leader to help them through it. When Hulkling confronted the newly returned Captain Marvel about his parentage, Patriot was the one who explained to him how he must be feeling. He also managed to lead the team to victory against Robot wielding bank robbers as they did so. Later, when Stature began to have a breakdown because her step-father was hurt because of her actions, Patriot was the one who managed to get through to her. Though she was Kate's best friend, Hawkeye was the one who said Patriot should be the one to talk to her. He then allowed Billy to shrink him, and began talking to her. At first he relayed his own fears about failure, and when that didn't work manged to use reverse psychology to snap Cassie out of it. Eli next had to deal with Kate herself. The two went out on an awkward "not-date" which caused tension between them. A still partially upset Eli was furious when she later lost her bow to Ronin. After their argument he was playing video games with Teddy online, when Kate approached him again. Kissing him, she explained that she just needed time, and a pleased Eli agreed to wait.
For further information: Secret Invasion
Patriot and the Young Avengers were the first heroes to respond to the Skrulls assault on New York. They were downtown when the first ship arrived, and leaped into action against the threat. They were surprised by the abilities of the Super-Skrulls and almost overwhelmed. They managed to hold on, but even after the intervention of the Initiative and the Runaways they were defeated. The team was then separated, while some ended up with the Runaways, Patriot and the others were rescued by Nick Fury and his Howling Commandos. They were then taken to his secret base. Understanding the severity of the threat Patriot and his team did all they could to support Fury against the Skrulls. Patriot and the Young Avengers were present during the final battle with the Skrulls. Patriot fought with everything he had, using his shield ,and even following the new Captain America's lead and using a firearm to fight against the Super-Skrulls alongside the other super-humans of New York. Even after Hawkeye was injured, Patriot continued fighting alongside his fellow heroes. In the end, the heroes were able to defeat the Skrulls.
For further information: Siege
After Norman Osborns assault on Asgard, Patriot is shown with the rest of the Young Avengers, New Avengers, and Secret Warriors listening to Steve Rogers speech about going to aid Thor and the other Asgardians against Osborn's forces. Patriot and everybody else get in the Quinjet and get teleported to Asgard, where Patriot and the rest of team surprised Osborn and begin to fight. After, Norman gets beat, Patriot is shown with the rest of the heroes who are easily getting beat by Void. When all hope seem lost Loki feels sorry for what he has done by destroying Asgard and begs Odin for the Norn stones and powers up Patriot and the rest of the heroes to fight. After the victory at Asgard Patriot is shown with his teammates about ready to go back home.
Power and Abilities
While secretly using his specially concocted MGH formula, Elijah possessed agility, strength, speed, endurance, and reaction-time superior to that of normal Super Soldiers like Captain America. After receiving a blood transfusion from his grandfather, Elijah developed genuine Super Soldier abilities, including bullet proof skin super strength, endurance, speed, and agility. He is also able to recover from injury at a much faster rate than normal humans.
Weapons and Equipment
Patriot carries a replica of Captain America's original, star-spangled, triangular shield. It looks very similar to the one his grandfather used to wield, though his grandfather's was unpainted. He also has throwing stars, modeled after the stars of the flag, that he keeps on his person and can use like shuriken.
Days Then and Now
On Earth-91172, a world ravaged by the Hulk, Patriot is a member of the Next Wave of Heroes - the last heroes of Earth. The members are Quentin Quire, Patriot, Wiccan, Lightspeed, Speedball and Sophie, Mindee and Esme Cuckoo.
In Other Media
- Eli Bradley appears in The Falcon and the Winter Soldier, portrayed by Elijah Richardson. In the series, he first appears when the Winter Soldier takes Falcon to go see his grandfather. After an intense conversation, the two heroes are forced out of the house. Elijah later reappears in the series playing basketball when Falcon comes back to talk to his grandfather once again. He appears with his grandfather as he watches Sam, now Captain America, telling the government officials that they need to do better. He appears one last time when Sam takes him and his grandfather to go to the Steve Rogers museum, with a new section dedicated to his grandfather and his forgotten legacy.
- Patriot appears in Marvel Ultimate Alliance 2, voiced by Ogie Banks. appears as both an avid Anti-Registration supporter and Pro-Registration campaign boss. He is the first to challenge the player should they choose Pro-Registration, ostensibly dissatisfied with their selection. After defeat, he is escorted away by S.H.I.E.L.D agents, and is later encountered alongside Firestar at the Geffen-Meyer Chemical Plant.
- Patriot was featured in the HeroClix figure game.
- ToyBiz released a 6-inch Patriot figure as part of the Marvel Legends line. The figure depicted Patriot in his original, masked costume, and was only available as part of the exclusive Young Avengers box set. After the Marvel license transferred to Hasbro, the Patriot figure was reused for a Marvel Legends Bucky figure, as well as a Marvel Legends Ghost figure.
- Patriot was later featured in Hasbro's Marvel Universe line, once again in his masked outfit. Unlike the Marvel Legends figure, this Patriot was done in the 3 and 3/4-inch scale.
- Eli appears without powers or uniform in The Falcon and the Winter Soldier streaming series. Sam bumps into him multiple times while visiting Eli's grandfather, Isaiah.