Ellen Brandt-Sallis was the wife of Theodore "Ted" Sallis, whom would later become the Man-Thing. They are also the parents of Job Burke, a child which was given away for adoption. According to the origin given for her in "Man-Thing" vol. 3 #2 (January, 1998), Ellen grew up with an emotionally cold father and was always frustrated at not being able to reach him. While in college, Ellen fell in love with another emotionally cold man, her Professor Theodore Sallis. Unsurplisingly, her love interest reminded Ellen of her father. They at first took to making love in his office during the afternoons. They then married each other and went on a honeymoon.
By the time of "Savage Tales" #1 the couple had moved in a small laboratory within the Everglades, Florida. Ted was employed by Project Gladiator, attempting to recreate the Super-Soldier Serum. He devoted all his time to his work. Consequently, their marriage grew cold and loveless. Felt cheated out of affection for the second time in her life, Ellen wanted to find a way of achieving revenge of her husband. She got it when A.I.M approached her on a recruitment mission. They wanted someone to keep an eye on Sallis and acquire whatever serum resulted from his research. Ellen agreed, striving for her revenge and at the same time gaining a new source of income.
When Sallis completed his research, Ellen led him right into an A.I.M trap. He escaped and consumed his own serum. The combined effects of the serum and the magical energies of the nearby Nexus of All Realities transformed him into the Man-Thing. In his new form, Sallis managed to slay the pursuing agents. Ellen was horrified and her face burned at his touch. According to a later retconn, Ellen was pregnant at the time of her scarring. She was located by Barbara Morse (later Mockingbird), the SHIELD agent attached to the program and transferred to the office of a local doctor.
Ellen Brandt first appeared in Savage Tales vol.1 issue 1 (May, 1971).
Mayor Story Arcs
Scarred for life
By the time of "Monsters Unleashed" #5 (April, 1974), Ellen had plastic surgery. However she still suffered from nightmares involving the Man-Thing. She ented the Everglades to meet him and face her fears. This time she faced him with a brave face and his touch did not burn her. She left to pursue a new life. However by the time she was next seen her face had regained its scarred appearance (possibly because this story was overlooked by later writers).
In the "Man-Thing" vol. 3 stories, her story was continued. She had given birth to a son but gave him up for adoption. She was tormented at guilt for her own past actions and sought release through self-degregation. She surrendered herself to the influence of alcohol, drugs and "loveless carnal indulgence", all in an effort to punish herself. Her sanity eroding, Ellen ended up in the Rosewell Sanitarium, Charles, Massachusetts. However there she was approached by an immortal, Sorrow of the Fallen Stars, who helped restore her sanity.
Ellen was released from the Sanitarium and was recruited by Dr.Strange to help Man-Thing guard the Nexus from forces seeking its destruction and the shattering of reality. In the course of her missions traveled through time and space. However according to "Peter Parker:Spider-Man Annual 1999" this missions ended with her merging with the Nexus itself. As did Man-Thing and Adam K'admon of the Fallen Stars. Accortding to "Incredible Hulk" vol. #6 (September, 1999), their composite being departed the Earth reality for a plain beyond. The remnant energies recreated the body of the Man-Thing without the memories of his previous experiences.
Ellen had acquired some magical abilities through her connection to the Nexus but their extent was not revealed. Since the source of her powers is the Nexus, travel between realities should be among them.
Dead of Night
A version of Ellen Brandt appeard in the MAX comics series, Dead of Night, featuring the Man-Thing. In this story she was a more bitter and evil mercenary.
In Other Media
Iron Man 3
Ellen Brandt will appear in Iron Man 3, portrayed by French actress Stephanie Szostak. This Brandt was a female soldier that lost her left arm, but she was part of the EXTREMIS regaining her arm. Brandt was an henchwoman fo the main villan of this movie.