Yedida "Alter" Tse'elon

Yedida "Alter" Tse'elon is an Israeli lieutenant-general in comic book series, Y: The Last Man. Initially the minor antagonist, Alter's motivations and tactics become more and more extreme, eventually making her the primary villain of the series, the last issues especially. Initially tasked by a third party, she leads an all female team of Israeli insurgents to hunt down and retrieve series protagonist, Yorick Brown, the last surviving human male after the gendercide in the first issue.  Her real name is not revealed until the penultimate issue, and she is previously refered to at all times either by her military rank or the nickname "Alter". This nickname was given to her by her parents, who had lost two children prior in birth.  It is an old superstitision that a false name can fool the "Angel of Death", to keep him away.

Alter was created by series creators Brian K. Vaughan and Pia Guerra. She is introduced in issue #1 and is last seen in issue #59, the second to last issue in the series.

Character Biography

New chief of the general staff for Israel, Alter is the leader of an Israeli commando unit sent to acquire Yorick Brown for her nation and can be considered one of the story's main villains. She faces court martial but manages to escape by convincing her guards to join her and shoot the judge. "Alter" (meaning "old one") is in fact only her nickname; because two of her siblings before her died in childbirth, her parents followed the superstition of never speaking her real name, so that the angel of death would be unable to find her and take her life. When she believes that Yorick is about to kill her, she announces her name as Yedida ("friend"). Alter continuously pursues the last man in an effort to give Israel a strong bargaining position against the rest of the Arab world for what she feels will be an inevitable assault on the Jewish people. She may also be trying to provoke a war in the belief that an external enemy is necessary to avoid internal discord in Israel. However five years after the plague, no attacks on Israel have occurred.

She inspires others to follow her in her quest for the last man, going so far as to forge evidence to motivate her troops. She often tells others that her sister was killed by terrorists, but it turns out that she was accidentally killed by IDF forces while protesting the destruction of Palestinian homes. She kills members of her own unit who question her actions, and is responsible for the murder of Yorick's mother, Jennifer Brown and Agent 355. Ultimately, it is revealed that she suffers from survivor's guilt in much the same way as Yorick did, brought about by the death of her sister. Like Yorick, she seeks to end her life through a form of assisted suicide, which she attempts to achieve by joining the military and taking dangerous postings. Following the plague, Alter's quest to find Yorick is shown to be motivated solely by her desire to be killed by him, as she considers him - as the sole remaining man - the only one worthy of doing so. Instead, Yorick knocks her out and leaves her to the IDF troops; her fate following these events remains unknown.

Villainous Acts

  • The cold-blooded murder of Congresswoman Jennifer Brown and Culper Ring Agent 355
  • Implied execution of defenseless civilian women following attacks after the Gendercide
  • Falsifying documents to build propaganda against other nations as an excuse to pursue Yorick
  • Destroying Jewish Holy Building and claiming it as an act committed by anonymous Anti-Semites
  • Capturing and torturing friends and family of Yorick Brown
  • Attempted murder of the remaining astronauts
  • Leads rebellion against former compatriot, and military judge to escape custody
  • Steals ship
  • Murder of other women under her command who questioned her motives, tactics or sanity