As a young woman growing up in Wisconsin, Ashley Crawford discovered her mutant ability to completely control the distribution of her body's adipose tissue. Using this power, Ashley crafted the perfect physique and became an internationally famous supermodel. For a time, Ashley was the highest paid fashion model in the country, appearing on the covers of multiple magazines. However, yearning for more Ashley responded to an ad in a local newspaper calling for men and women of action. Donning the persona of Big Bertha, Ashley Crawford joined Mr. Immortal's Great Lakes Avengers.
Great Lakes Avengers
As Big Bertha, Ashley enjoyed her being a superhero despite often being greeted with revulsion based on her appearance. Initially, the GLA used Ashley's penthouse as their headquarters and her private jet as their transportation.
Ashley continued to work as a model with Mirror Modeling to continue to fund the GLA. Unfortunately, this also meant that she was largely absent from spending time with her GLA friends. Ashley was further pulled between her two worlds by repeated offers to move away from Milwaukee to pursue her career in locations such as New York City, London, Paris, Milan, or Rome. Ashley eventually decide to enjoy her life as it is instead of feeling like she was spread too thin.
Big Bertha continued to engage in superhero works with her friends and teammates including defeating both Dr. Tannenbaum's Giant Robot Snowman and Evil Living Christmas Trees, battling Thunderbolts, and facing off against A.I.M..
Along with her teammates, Big Bertha registered under the Superhuman Registration Act and became part of the Wisconsin branch of the Initiative. She and her teammates helped other heroes to stop the Skrull invasion of Earth including fighting their newest teammate, the Grasshopper, who was a Skrull impostor.
Deadpool's Revenge Squad
Posteriorly, Big Bertha decided to restart her modelling career as a plus-size and she and Mr. I got engaged, but, due to Craig's drunkenness it didn't even last 24 hours. This series of unfortunate events eventually led to the team's segregation.
The GLA in Detroit
Sometime later, when Flatman got the Avengers' legal representative Connie Ferrari to reinstate the Great Lake Avengers as a permanent and official addition to the Avengers, Big Bertha was the only former member of the team together with Doorman who answered his call to bring the team together. Unknown to them Craig's phone was now in possession of a local girl named Pansy. Unwilling to "assume things," Pansy showed up at the rendezvous point, an abandoned Stark Assembly and Manufacturing plant the Avengers had set up as the GLA new headquarters in Detroit, Michigan, and waited for the Great Lakes Avengers. Once they arrived, Pansy cleared up the confusion caused by her presence and showed the team around the facilities.
The team's problems began when they had the tremendous idea of going to a local bar in the middle of the night and try to convince them to turn the music volume down. The owner Nein Rouge instead refuses and begins to insult them. Upon getting arrested after a fight, Flatman and Bertha are left in jail with a young girl named Goodness Silva, who can turn into a wolf. There are some complications, but everything turns out fine as they're all later released thanks to Connie Ferrari, the legal representative of the Avengers.
Following this misadventure, the team was served with an injunction, forbidding them of performing any superhero activity. Mister Immortal rejoined the team and went on patrol with Flatman while Bertha, Doorman and Goodness, now going by the name of Good Boy, investigated Nain Rouge's bar, where they found the villain was in fact councilman Dick Snerd. When Flatman and Mister Immortal returned from patrol, they discovered Bertha and Good Boy had taken Snerd hostage. When Connie arrived to help the team with the injunction, she not only that they had taken Snerd, but also that in a fit of rage, Good Boy severely hurt him. The team dropped him off at a hospital and escaped.
In between superheroics, Bertha accepted a modelling job. However, it turned out his client was a scientist named Doctor Nod who wanted to harvest genetic material from her to create a pill supplement which allowed its user to alter their weight at will. Even though Bertha managed to escape from his grasp on her own, Doctor Nod tried to take her down, consuming an enormous amount of his own pills in the process, becoming a mindless giant who started to tear the city apart. Big Bertha confronted him, having ingested some of his pills to match him in power.
When Nod's Bod Squad arrived to assist their boss, Big Bertha and Good Boy focused their attention on them, which allowed Nod to slip away and drink another batch of his product, turning into a giant fat blob. He was stopped when Doorman teleported Mister Immortal inside Doctor Nod's body, and he punched his heart, causing Doctor Nod to collapse and seemingly die.
Even though the city applauded the heroes, the GLA's rejoicement was abruptly cut short when Deadpool appeared on their doorstep and, as a member of the Avengers Unity Division, told them they were fired, informing them that their legal claim of the name didn't hold up in court. He stated that people simply didn't like them, but comforted them, proclaiming that in a few years they could try to be in the spotlight again.
Big Bertha was born a mutant with the ability to alter the physical size and mass of her body including:
- Body Transformation: Big Bertha can add hundreds of pounds of super-bulk to her frame increasing her mass, girth, and height. In both her larger and smaller forms, Big Bertha is able to completely control the distribution of adipose tissue, giving her complete control over her figure. The source of this additional size isn't known, but it is presumably extra-dimensional. To decrease her size, Big Bertha must induce vomiting to expel the excess mass. See Conservation of Energy for details.
- Superhuman Strength: With her additional super-bulk mass, Big Bertha's physical muscular and skeletal strength is increased to superhuman levels. At her peak, she is able to lift 50 tons.
- Superhuman Durability: The additional super-bulk mass also enhances the density and durability of her body tissues making her much more resistant to conventional injury than those of a normal human. She can withstand high caliber bullets, exposure to temperature extremes, falls from great heights, and high-velocity impact forces without sustaining injury.
Big Bertha possess the attributes of a well-conditioned athlete regardless of her transformation state. She is additionally a formidable unarmed combatant trained by Hawkeye and Mockingbird, and a skilled pilot of conventional jet aircraft. She is also a proficient card player.
Baseline Stamina: Big Bertha's physical stamina isn't heightened along with her strength and durability. While she retains the stamina of a well-conditioned athlete, she will begin to tire rapidly with her additional mass.
- Ashley's modeling career provides the funding for the Great Lakes team.
- Deadpool is attracted to Ashley, but only in her larger form. This may simply be him fetishizing her.
- 45 Appearances of Ashley Crawford (Earth-616)
- 4 Minor Appearances of Ashley Crawford (Earth-616)
- Media Ashley Crawford (Earth-616) was Mentioned in
- 107 Images featuring Ashley Crawford (Earth-616)
- 2 Quotations by or about Ashley Crawford (Earth-616)
- Character Gallery: Ashley Crawford (Earth-616)
- Great Lakes Avengers
- Big Bertha on the Marvel Universe Character Bio Wiki
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