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"Move. Or you will be moved."
― Ayo to Natasha Romanoff[src]

Ayo is a member and the second-in-command of the Dora Milaje tasked to guard the Golden Tribe. After the Avengers Civil War, Ayo helped Bucky Barnes free himself of his HYDRA brainwashing. Ayo protected T'Challa throughout his rule, although she was forced to briefly follow Erik Killmonger when he had defeated T'Challa in Ritual Combat, until T'Challa returned and defeated Killmonger. Once the threat of Thanos had reached Wakanda, Ayo took part in protecting her nation against this threat, fighting in the Battle of Wakanda until Thanos' victory. In 2024, Ayo was sent to take Baron Zemo into the custody of the Dora Milaje after Barnes facilitated his escape.

Biography

Protecting T'Challa

Encounter with Black Widow

"Zemo murdered our King T'Chaka at the U.N. The man who chose us. Who chose me to protect him."
― Ayo to Bucky Barnes[src]

Ayo threatens Black Widow for T'Challa

Ayo traveled with King T'Chaka and Prince T'Challa to Vienna to take part in the ratifying of the Sokovia Accords. After T'Chaka's death, she escorted T'Challa to his car when he learned from his Attaché that the Winter Soldier had escaped from the Joint Counter Terrorist Centre Building with the aid of Captain America and the Wakandan people were beginning the hunt for him. The group was stopped by Natasha Romanoff, who wished to speak with T'Challa. Unwilling to allow her King to be slowed down, Ayo stood up to Romanoff and demanded that she move aside, threatening to fight her if she refused. T'Challa however told Ayo to stand aside as he spoke with Romanoff who told him to side with Tony Stark, so they could help him find and recapture the Winter Soldier.[1]

Incoronation of T'Challa

Ayo awaiting the return of Black Panther

"Take her to the River Province to prepare her for the ceremony."
"Yes, General."
Okoye and Ayo[src]

Ayo was among the Dora Milaje who welcomed T'Challa when he returned to Wakanda from a mission to rescue Nakia. She stood beside Queen Mother Ramonda and Princess Shuri until Okoye asked her to take Nakia to the River Tribe so she could prepare for the incoming coronation ceremony.

Ayo and Okoye attending the ceremony

Ayo then took part in the ceremony, dancing with the other Dora Milaje on the boat and knocking on the boat with her Vibranium Spear to activate the drainage systems of the Warrior Falls. Ayo stood next to Okoye during Zuri's speech, pointing her spear at M'Baku when he menacingly approached Shuri. As M'Baku challenged T'Challa for the throne, Ayo remained by her general's side. When T'Challa defeated M'Baku, Ayo cheered with the rest of the Wakandans and chanted T'Challa's name.

Ayo guarding both T'Challa and Nakia

Following the coronation, Ayo escorted him and Nakia through the streets of the Golden City as they took a walk together. Later, Ayo returned to the throne room when T'Challa was informed of the Robbery of the Museum of Great Britain. She then accompanied T'Challa to Shuri's Lab where he could acquire some equipment for his incoming mission.[2]

Erik Killmonger's Arrival

Ayo watches T'Challa's duel against N'Jadaka

"Is there nothing that can be done?"
― Ayo to Okoye[src]

Ayo was present when Erik Killmonger was taken to the Citadel's throne room. She stood behind Killmonger when T'Challa approached him in order to protect T'Challa should Killmonger try to attack him.

Later, Ayo and the rest of the Dora Milaje attended the duel between T'Challa and Killmonger, who claimed the throne of Wakanda. She watched as Killmonger slowly gained the upper hand over T'Challa and murdered Zuri who intervened in the fight. As Killmonger defeated T'Challa and openly mocked him, claiming he was unworthy of being King, Ayo asked Okoye whether the Dora Milaje could do something, but Okoye remained silent, knowing that they had to remain uninvolved in the fight.

Following Killmonger's victory, who threw T'Challa down the Warrior Falls, Ayo was forced to give him the traditional Wakandan salute and to serve him. As such, Ayo stood in the throne room when Killmonger held his first Tribal Council and ordered the Wakandans to gather Vibranium weapons to be sent to the outer world.[2]

Battle of Mount Bashenga

Ayo chooses to rebel against Erik Killmonger

"Ayo! The King!"
Okoye to Ayo[src]

Ayo was with the rest of the Dora Milaje as Erik Killmonger and W'Kabi gathered Vibranium weapons and loaded three planes which would leave Wakanda. However, one of the planes was destroyed by Black Panther, who had survived his duel with Killmonger. Like the rest of the Dora Milaje, Ayo was relieved to find out that T'Challa had survived. She also followed Okoye when she rebelled against Killmonger. Ayo was ordered to take several Dora with her to assist the King in her battle against the Border Tribe who charged at Black Panther.

Ayo is soon cornered by the Border Tribe

For a time, Ayo successfully fought against the Border Tribe, avoiding the assaults of their war rhinoceros. However, she along with Shuri, Nakia and Okoye were ultimately cornered by the Border Tribe, who ordered them to surrender. However, the Jabari Tribe joined the battle, enabling Ayo to resume the fight against their enemies. In the end, the Border Tribe surrendered.[2]

T'Challa as King Again

Ayo joining T'Challa onto the United Nations

In the aftermath of the Battle of Mount Bashenga, Ayo once again escorted King T'Challa and Nakia in the streets of the Golden City. Later, Ayo was among the Wakandan delegation to journey to the United Nations meeting in Vienna. She stood behind T'Challa as he delivered a speech in which he declared that he would open Wakanda to the rest of the world and share their vibranium resources.[2]

Curing Bucky Barnes

Ayo recites the Winter Soldier activation words

"It is time."
"You sure about this?"
"I won't let you hurt anyone."
― Ayo and Bucky Barnes[src]

Ayo met with Bucky Barnes in Wakanda, following Shuri removing the HYDRA programming out of his brain. Ayo informed Barnes it was time to test if he was still susceptible to the programming, though Barnes was uncertain if they should try. However, Ayo assured him she would prevent him from hurting anyone.

Ayo confirming that Bucky Barnes is free

Ayo then recited the activation words, and though Barnes was stressed upon hearing them, it confirmed he was freed of his brainwashing. After Ayo told him he was free, Barnes began to cry tears of joy at finally being free.[3]

Battle of Wakanda

Ayo stands with T'Challa and the Dora Milaje

Ayo was present during the Avengers' arrival in Wakanda and witnessed the entry of the Outrider dropships. She was later tasked with protecting Shuri while she worked on separating Vision from the Mind Stone. Ayo fiercely defended them when Corvus Glaive appeared, but the latter quickly incapacitated both the Dora and the princess before battling Vision.[4]

Hunting Baron Zemo

Reuniting with Bucky Barnes

Ayo being reunited with Bucky Barnes

"How could you free him?"
"We need his help."
"With time, will, and the resources, the Winter Soldier programming was removed from you like a rotten fur."
― Ayo and Bucky Barnes[src]

Upon hearing that Helmut Zemo had been broken out of his imprisonment, Ayo was sent to track him down. She went to Latvia where she left a trail of Kimoyo Beads for Bucky Barnes to follow. When he found her, Ayo demanded to know where Zemo was.[5]

Ayo making her deal with Bucky Barnes

Ayo asked Barnes why he freed Zemo recalling how she had let T'Chaka down by not being there to protect him from the bombing. She then reluctantly told him he had eight hours with Zemo before they would come back to arrest him.[6]

Skirmish in Latvia

Ayo being introduced to John Walker

"Ayo, let's talk about this."
"Bast damn you, James."
Bucky Barnes and Ayo[src]

Eight hours later, Ayo and two Dora Milaje named Nomble and Yama arrived to arrest Helmut Zemo, only to be confronted by John Walker. Walker challenged her telling her that they had no jurisdiction there, but Ayo retorted that the Dora Milaje don't require jurisdiction.

Ayo furiously fights against Captain America

After Walker put his hand on her armor, Ayo swiftly threw him against a pole and began to fight against him and Battlestar. Shortly, Bucky Barnes and Sam Wilson tried to stop the Dora Milaje from fighting, causing Ayo to remove Barnes' vibranium arm and she expressed her disappointment with him.

Ayo discovering that Helmut Zemo escaped

After finding out that Zemo escaped, Ayo told Yama to give Walker back the shield and left with her and Nomble.[6]

Arresting Helmut Zemo

Ayo talks with Bucky Barnes in Sokovia

"We will take him to the Raft... where he will live out his days. It would be prudent to make yourself scarce in Wakanda for the time being, White Wolf."
― Ayo to Bucky Barnes[src]

Ayo, along with Nomble and Yama, traveled to the Sokovian Memorial in Sokovia to arrest Helmut Zemo after being tipped off about his presence there by Bucky Barnes. As the Dora Milaje arrested Zemo and escorted him to the Royal Talon Fighter, Ayo notified Barnes that they would be taking Zemo to the Raft and advised Barnes that he should make himself scarce in Wakanda as a result of recent events.

Ayo is asked by Bucky Barnes for a favor

Before she departed with the others, Barnes asked her for a favor for Sam Wilson.[7]

Personality

"The Dora Milaje have jurisdiction wherever the Dora Milaje find themselves to be."
― Ayo to John Walker[src]

Ayo is a devoted member of the Dora Milaje and complies to every order Okoye gives her. She is also loyal to the Golden Tribe, which is shown when Natasha Romanoff stood before her and T'Challa, displaying complete willingness to fight her despite her famous fighting prowess. Like with the other members of the Dora Milaje, Ayo saw N'Jadaka as being completely unfit to become the King of Wakanda and was clearly distraught as he slowly overpowered T'Challa in Ritual Combat after murdering Zuri, questioning Okoye if they can do nothing to stop N'Jadaka from rising to power. Nevertheless, Ayo continues to follow her general no matter who rules Wakanda and does not hesitate to turn against N'Jadaka when Okoye believed that T'Challa is still the rightful king. Ayo's allegiance to the Royal Family is shown again during the Battle of Wakanda when Corvus Glaive infiltrated the country to attack Shuri and Vision. She fiercely put herself between them and the alien warrior until he overpowers her. Despite having learned of what T'Chaka had done in the past to keep Wakanda from being overly intergrated into the world, Ayo still showed strong respect and compassion for him, considering her failure to protect and save him as a deep loss from which she took great grief and shame and holding a personal grudge against Helmut Zemo for his murder.

Having established a close relationship with Bucky Barnes during his stay in Wakanda, expressing concern as she was about to activate the words that could control him and joy when it no longer worked, Ayo was personally offended and hurt with Barnes's decision to free Zemo, making her dismay and feelings of betrayal clear. Still, Ayo was reasonable enough to relent when Barnes told him Zemo was a means to an end, giving him 8 hours and after it was up the chance to voluntarily hand over Zemo. Even though she had the opportunity and chance to kill him upon having disarmed him of his arm, Ayo simply decided to leave him unharmed, though she cursed him in Bast's name, and when he released Zemo into the Dora Milaje's captivity, Ayo quickly reestablished her friendship with him, warning him to not go to Wakanda for a while and calling him White Wolf.

Ayo is primarily a serious individual but she does have a sense of humor, laughing at Everett Ross's inadequate mastery of Xhosa when he attempted to wish T'Challa good luck.

Abilities

  • Master Martial Artist: As a member of the Dora Milaje, Ayo has received extensive combat training and become a very capable warrior, having excellent skill in many fields of combat. She is quite confident in her skills, confidently threatening Natasha Romanoff when she stood in T'Challa's way despite her being an exceptional and famous fighter in her own right. During the Battle of Mount Bashenga, Ayo defeated many warriors of the Border Tribe and survived uninjured. She even held off the stronger and highly trained assassin of Thanos Corvus Glaive and survived the fight despite being defeated. Her fighting skills were great enough to easily subdue John Walker, a highly decorated U.S. veteran who was chosen to be the next Captain America, and even get the better of a reluctant Bucky Barnes, disarming him by triggering the release mechanism for his bionic arm, a feat Barnes didn’t know was possible.
  • Spear Mastery: As a member of the Dora Milaje, Ayo is extremely skilled with her Vibranium Spear, easily besting many warriors of the Border Tribe during the Battle of Mount Bashenga and even fighting off Corvus Glaive with it. She is also accurate in throwing it, being able to precisely throw her spear at a fellow Dora to wield. Ayo was able to wield another Dora Milaje's spear with equal skill to using her own, dominating John Walker completely into the defensive and would have killed him had Barnes not stopped her and subsequently effectively using the spear to push back Barnes, even hitting his prosthetic arm with the tip.
  • Multilingualism: Ayo is fluent in her native language Xhosa and in English. She is also able to speak Russian.

Equipment

Weapons

  • Vibranium Spear: Ayo uses a specialized Vibranium spear capable of collapsing into a handle for concealment. Her spear along with others have been shown to be able to interact with technology by striking the ground with the blunt end, notably activating the drainage system for Warrior Falls.

Other Equipment

  • Kimoyo Beads: Like many Wakandans, Ayo had Kimoyo Beads she could use as a communication device.
  • Dora Milaje Armor: As a standard-issue uniform of the Dora Milaje, Ayo wore a strongly suggested armor that is made of Vibranium-weave due to being a Wakandan product, and is still better than most armor the world has to offer at large.

Relationships

Allies

Enemies

Appearances

Trivia

  • In the comics, Ayo is a member of the Dora Milaje who falls in love with her fellow Dora Milaje Aneka. After Queen Ramonda sentences Aneka to death for killing a rapist, Ayo steals both sets of Midnight Angel prototype armors and rescues Aneka. Viewing T'Challa as absentee and unworthy king, Ayo and Aneka become the vigilantes known as the Midnight Angels and start a rebellion.
  • In Captain America: Civil War, Ayo was credited only as "Security Chief".

Behind the Scenes

References

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