In the Mindscape, a world where strange creatures live that borders on the minds of all intelligent life, there is a force of beings that protect the sleeping minds of humans. For if they were not protected, dangerous beings would enter the minds of sleeping humans. One of the beings that protects the human minds, what humans call 'Sleepwalker', was tricked by his enemy, Cobweb, into entering the mind of Rick Sheridan. After confronting Sleepwalker in many of his dreams, Rick tore off Sleepwalker's Imaginator. This caused Sleepwalker and Rick to bond together. Now, whenever Rick Sheridan goes to sleep, Sleepwalker materializes into reality. Rick and Sleepwalker have agreed that when Sleepwalker comes out, he fights crime.
Sleepwalker was created by Bob Budiansky and Bret Blevins and first appeared in Sleepwalker issue 1 (1991). With the publication of Sleepwalker, a long dream of writer Bob Budiansky was finally fulfilled, as he had the plans for Sleepwalker as early as the late 1970's.
Major Story Arcs
A New Way of Life
Rick Sheridan eventually discovered that the alien Sleepwalker was truly within his mind. In order to find out why Sleepwalker was inside his mind, and what his intentions were, Rick tried to communicate with him by writing and through an old tape-recorder. Sleepwalker would emerge when Rick was asleep, and would communicate back to Rick, whom would find the messages as soon as he woke up. Through this, Rick understood that Sleepwalker was a protector for the good, but was trapped inside Rick with no way out. The presence of Sleepwalker took it's toll on Rick, as he soon started to fail classes, and the relationship with his girlfriend Alyssa Conover soon got strained.
Infinity Gauntlet and Death of a Host
Sleepwalker's host, Rick, along with 50 percent of all beings in the Universe was instantly wiped from existence by Thanos, the Mad Titan after he got hold of the Infinity Gems. Sleepwalker was however released at the time of Rick's death and fought, alongside many other heroes, to stop Thanos. This eventually worked out, and all beings whom had seemingly died where returned to life, including Rick, whom could not remember anything.
Meeting the Heroes
Sleepwalker has fought a wide array of villains, from the billiard based Eightball, to Crimewave, to the Chain Gang. In the Infinity War, Sleepwalker helped channel the minds of Professor X, Jean Grey, Moondragon, and Psylocke. During the battle against the evil doppelgangers that Magus made, Sleepwalker fought some of the evil clones and saved some citizens. Sleepwalker also impersonated his own doppelganger. During the Infinity Crusade, he was captured by Goddess and brought to the 'Counter-Earth'.
Sleepwalker Turned Evil?
Sleepwalker seemingly betrayed Rick during an invasion of what seemed to be other Sleepwalkers. Sleepwalker had walked up to a sleeping Rick and asked his fellow Sleepwalkers if he could be the one to kill his old host. Many heroes thought for some time that Sleepwalker had indeed turned evil, but this was far from the truth. As it turned out, Sleepwalker had not 'slain' Rick, but actually stored his essence inside a mystical blade, having Rick to appear dead (and safe from further harm). It turned out that the beings whom pretended to be Sleepwalkers where actually troops of Sleepwalker's enemy Cobweb. Sleepwalker however managed to avert the invasion of Cobweb's troops and restored Rick to his normal self.
Cobweb wanted to finally defeat Sleepwalker so he devised a plan. Cobweb would disguise his minions as Sleepwalker's race and make everyone believe that Sleepwalker was their leader. Then, everybody would hate Sleepwalker. The plan went into action. Sleepwalker and the Avengers stopped the invasion, but the public still believed that Sleepwalker was the leader of a race that was going to try to take over. Cobweb attacked again, but Sleepwalker defeated him for good, banishing him. Sleepwalker seemingly died afterwards. It was soon revealed that Sleepwalker did not die, he was only trapped inside Rick Sheridan's mind.
Return and the Initiative
Some years later, Sleepwalker is seen again back in the real world while he is investigating the damages of an explosion perpetuated by the Ringmaster. He however got sucked back again in Rick Sheridan's mind when Rick woke up. Sleepwalker and Rick where later recruited for the 50 States Initiative, an initiative for every American state to have it's own superhero team. He became part of a team assembled by Ms. Marvel for the Avengers Initiative which consisted of himself and Machine Man in search of the missing heroines including Ms.Marvel's apprentice, Araña. After they found her, Sleepwalker remained with the Initiative for some time before leaving once again to unknown places.
When Spider-Man (Otto Octavius) is attacked by a fearworm, Sleepwalker and Rick Sheridan attempt to help him. Because Rick is asleep, Sleepwalker is manifested in physical form so attempts to get through to Spider-Man verbally. However he is attacked by an unwitting Spider-Man who is mentally fighting off the fearworm with the aid of Rick in the Mindscape. Spider-Man manages to get rid of the fearworm which Sleepwalker promptly destroys with his warp gaze. Angrily, Spider-Man claims the attack was Sleepwalker's fault, in response Sleepwalker apologizes and floats away.
Some months later, Sleepwalker was recruited, through Rick Sheridan, by the Fantastic Four in order to help repel an invasion of demons caused by Franklin Richard's dreams. Rick, seemingly very depressed and still mourning Alyssa's death, did however accept the invitation to help. He notified the heroes that he knew they did not come for him, but for Sleepwalker.
Powers and Abilities
Sleepwalker has super strength, enhanced durability, resistance to injury and mental attacks, and flight. He also has an ability called the Warp Gaze, a vision- based power which allows him to manipulate the matter it falls upon. As a law enforcer of the Mindscape, he has sworn not to use it any living entity, because it can cause extreme pain to the organism as well as showing them their worst nightmares. He also has an amplifying effect on mental powers by being present - he was used as a mental amplifier by Professor X, Jean Grey, Psylocke and Moondragon during the Infinity War.
Sleepwalker possesses an item called an Imaginator which allows him to teleport himself or someone else to anywhere he can imagine. Additionally, he has at times used a weapon called a mindrake which can be used to separates someone's mind from their body with varying degrees of completeness. A skilled wielder could completely remove the mind whereas less skilled users would leave stray thoughts behind.
On Earth-6215 Sleepwalker has been separated from Rick Sheridan, and is a member of the League of Losers. He takes control of peoples dreams and uses them to alter reality.