Who’s Who In The DCU 9.3.03

Welcome to the season premiere of Who’s Who in the DCU, part of the new season at 411 Comics. Everyone is really bringing his or her “A” game to the site, so be sure to read everything. And for those of you who were worried as to whether I would return or not let me paraphrase P. Diddy; “I ain’t going nowhere” (well that isn’t completely true. I have been moved to Wednesdays.) Before I get into the questions I do have a few things to say.

Firstly I want to thank Daron for putting up with all of my shenanigans over the summer. He really helped me make sure the column got up on time. So thanks again Daron.

I also want to welcome Ben Morse back into the fold. Ben is back from summer camp, where he made baskets and told ghost stories by the campfire. He’s back to entertain us with his wit, and point out my inevitable errors. Ben, want to take this time to reintroduce yourself?

Frankly I’d rather take this time to promote my upcoming documentary, “Gerbils, Midgets & the Unmentionable Things That Happened in the Closet: How Mathan Spent His Summer Vacation,” but frankly, you’ve dispensed so much mediocrity over the past three months, I think it’s high time we got back to business –Ben

Hallsy has the honor of have the first question answered this week. He knows why.

Can you give me some background info on the following people and tell me where they are now in the DCU?
– Damage
– The Ray
– Anima
– Triumph
– Loose Cannon
– Icon
– Static

Courtney “Anima” Mason is this girl who contains Animus (the embodiment of masculinity and rage.) When those horrid Bloodlines Aliens attacked her she tapped into the force. Anima is pretty strong and can sap life energy. She showed up in “Wonder Woman” #175, and in “Young Justice” #49 & 50.

Eddie “Loose Cannon” Walker was a cop for MSCU, but then he got crippled. “Could his life get any worse” you ask? Yes. He also got attacked by a Bloodlines Alien (which is like the kiss of mediocrity.) Now he has the power to become a huge monster with insane strength and rage. “Hulk rip-off” you say? Wrong, Loose Cannon is completely different. He is blue. See, completely different. He was last seen in “Superboy and the Ravers” #8. Actually, he changes color as he gets more angry and thus stronger, which caused Superboy to dub him “the mood ring of super-heroes” back in an issue of Superboy –Ben

Grant “Damage” Emerson is a teen-ager. As if that weren’t bad enough, he also had no idea who his parents were. Add to that he has super powers. To top it all off, he can’t really control them. Well he can control his speed, strength, and invulnerability. His explosions however are more difficult for him to get a grasp on. Oh did I mention that Al “The Atom” Pratt, Jay “The Flash” Garrick, Alan “Green Lantern” Scott, Ted “Wildcat” Grant Rex “Hourman” Tyler, Dinah “Black Canary” Lance, Ted “Starman” Knight, Johnny “Johnny Quick” Chambers, Carter “Hawkman” Hall, Shiera “Hawkgirl” Hall, Joan “Miss America” Dale Trevor, Libby “Liberty Belle” Lawrence, Barry “The Flash” Allen, Orin AKA Aquaman, Dinah “Black Canary” Laurel Lance, Hal “Green Lantern” Jordan, Ray “Atom” Palmer, and J’onn J’onzz all contributed their DNA to Grant’s genetic make up? He popped up in “Young Justice” #49 & 50. He also played a role in the JSA’s recent “Princes of Darkness” storyline. He eventually discovered that his birth parents were Al Pratt, the original Atom, and his wife Mary. Immortal villain Vandal Savage was the one who stole all that DNA and killed Mary, kidnapping Grant and placing him with people who worked for him as “parents” (Al was told both Mary and his son died in childbirth…he died during Zero Hour, never getting to meet his son). It was revealed in the recently-cancelled Titans series (Grant served two terms as a member of a Titans team) that Grant was abused by his foster Dad as a kid; he’s now living on the Native American reservation where Roy “Arsenal” Harper was raised to try and find some inner peace (oh, and Dr. Polaris is his uncle also) –Ben

Ray “Ray” Terrill is the son of the Golden Age Ray. He inherited his pop’s powers. Ray is a very solar hero. He can do anything with sunlight. He can fly. He can create is costume. He can fire blasts. But he can’t build a fan base. He was a member of Young Justice, and was most recently seen in the JSA’s “Princes of Darkness” storyline. He was a member of the crappy post-JLI/pre-JLA version of the Justice League as well…and a young Joe Quesada did some of his first work in the mini-series that introduced the current Ray. -Ben

Will “Triumph” MacIntyre was an original member of the Justice League. But on their first mission he got caught up in a space/time warp (don’t you hate when that happens?) and his existence was erased. But during Zero Hour, when time was going all wacky, he returned. He was eventually able to convince the JLA that he belonged with the team. But then his soul got “accidentally” sold to Neron. Oddly enough having his wish granted made his life worse. He was last seen in JLA #28-31. It is a great story titled “Crisis Times Five” which set up the current JSA series. But it is without a doubt Triumph’s finest hour.

Icon and Static weren’t actually DCU characters. They made a brief appearance in the DCU as part of a crossover with some Superman books. However there is talk of Static making an appearance in Teen Titans.

411 Music’s own magnificent Aaron Cameron has just graced us with his presence. Aaron is there anything I can help you with?

What was the storyline explanation for the end of the happy-go-lucky Beetle, Booster, et al Justice League? I remember them getting destroyed by Doomsday in the Death of Supes series, but I had stopped readin’ JL at that point…

As with every comedy a lot of serious stuff happened. Max got shot. A new guy took his place. Some members got kicked off the team. The team lost their UN backing. They also battled some major villains (Despero, Dreamslayer.), and a member died. Eventually the team was shattered. In light of all the drama, the lighthearted team disbanded. But some members stayed on with the Superman led team, to get demolished by Doomsday.

Hanes really wants to know

Who replaced Jim Gordon?

Well former Mayor Krol (he’s dead now) actually demoted Jim Gordon. Who replaced Jim? Y’know that adage about behind every great man is a great woman? His wife, Sarah Essen Gordon, replaced him as commissioner. But then the Joker killed her. Anyhow the current commish is Michael Atkins. But Gordon is still around in the Batman cast. In this month’s Detective Comics he plays a victim. Hey, it’s work. He has bills to pay. He can’t pick and choose his roles anymore. Does anyone remember the box office flop that was “Gordon’s Law?” After that you would think that he would never work in Gotham again. But he’s not a quitter. This role might not be what he’s accustomed to, but it is a stepping stone in his career. He will next be appearing as a corpse in December’s CSI comic. I would feel dirty adding anything to this sad sad attempt at that “humor” thing Mathan has been experimenting with. –Ben

LoBeach do you have something that has been plaguing your mind?

How did Parasite discover Superman’s identity?

The Parasite has the ability to take the powers, life force, and memories of any person he comes in contact with. So if he should so happen to take Supes’ powers, he also has the knowledge to go beat up Pa Kent because that will really hurt Clark. He could become a credible villain if he used his powers psychologically. He could touch you and then he would know your fears. I could make you remember the time you wet your bed during a sleep over with your best friend in the second grade. Or did that just happen to me? If memory serves me correctly, his powers got upgraded big time a couple years back and he ended up accidentally brushing up against Lois while disguised as a civlian, leading to him taking Lois’ place and trying to destroy her and Supes’ marriage to mess with the Man of Steel, before burning out and dying. –Ben

LoBeach you want to stick with the Superman Villain theme?

And what happened to the Cyborg after The Doomsday Wars?

After the Cyborg had hung out with Doomsday he spent some time in the Bottle City of Kandor. That is a swinging place. There he ruled with an iron fist. Of course he bumped heads with Superman again, who sent him to the Phantom Zone. But since Kal’s new Fortress has access to different dimensions, a door to the Phantom Zone opening was inevitable. Supes and Cy fought but Cy was subdued. He is on lock down as you read this. Hopefully he will stay on the low for a while. I would hate for him to become a clichéd villain. Cyborg showed up again during the “Ending Battle” storyline. He has now become some sort of living spaceship. He tried and failed again to kill Superman.

Jeff, do you have a Hal Jordan query?

Can I get a list of the tpbs dealing with the Hal Jordan transition from GL to Spectre? (i.e. when he started to become Parallax and on).

I loved Parallax (and I’m not just talking about Hallsy’s pseudonym.) If you want to see him in action check out; Guy Gardner #20 &21, Zero Hour #4-0, Green Lantern #0, 48-50, 60-64, Green Lantern Annual #4, Green Lantern/Silver Surfer #1, and Parallax: Emerald Night #1. That is some primo Parallax action. Also pick up the Final Night trade for the end of Parallax and Day of Judgment for his redemption. Final Night is a great, underrated story to read in TPB form. To the best of my knowledge, Day of Judgment is not available in any collected form. –Ben

Mike Z, how ya been?

Which character has had the most interpretations? (for example Mon-L – Mon-El – Lar Gand, Valor – M’Onel; or Kara Zor-El, Supergirl – Kara Zor-L, Power Girl – Karen Page, Power-Girl – Matrix, Supergirl – Linda Lee, Supergirl)

This one’s a tough. Let’s start with Mon’el. There is the Mon’el from before Crisis, who is exactly the same as post Crisis. Then you have Mon’el’s descendant, Elto Gand< who poses as him on a Legion adventure. And there was the SW6 Mon'el. So that brings Mon'el up to three. Then there is the post Zero Hour Mon'el of the 31st century. And I'll even count Lar Gand of the 21st century, even though he will later become Mon'el in the 31st century. So I count five variations on Mon'el. Through some weird twist of continuity and retcons, the current M’Onel, who was Lar Gand in the 21st century is the same one who existed pre-Zero Hour. Before Zero Hour, Lar Gand was imprisoned in the Phantom Zone and freed in the 31st century by the Legion to become Mon El. The same events took place post-Zero Hour, but with a different Legion and the new Superboy…but still the same guy…so I’m gonna say there have been only four. –Ben

Superman’s cousin is much more difficult because before Crisis there were two Supermen. One on Earth 1 and one on Earth 2. On Earth 2 Superman’s cousin was Power Girl. On Earth 1 Superman’s cousin was Supergirl. Now post Crisis Power Girl still though she was Superman’s cousin, but she wasn’t. But she might be. So that is basically three. Mon’el beats Superman’s cousin by two. But the fight doesn’t have to be over.

If you open the criteria to those who fill the role of Supergirl, then Supergirl wins hands down. You have the Matix Supergirl (who became Linda in the Supergirl series.) You also have Laurel Gand of the Post Crisis Legion (she’s Lar Gand’s cousin), and Andromeda of the Post Zero Hour Legion. You also have Cir El, who is appearing in Superman books at the moment. And you have Ariella (Linda Danvers’ Hypertime conceived daughter) who could grow up to be Supergirl. That would bring Supergirl to 8. What really hurts Mon El is the lack of a Legion in Earth Two’s future.

JonBritton, I know you have a deep question for me.

What did you blow off at first and then years later realize was great?

The comic that I blew off that I regretted would have to be Starman. I can remember seeing Starman #0 and not picking it up. In fact I think I picked up Primal Force #0 instead because I was curious what the Golem was doing. Anyway I missed the first half of Starman, but was firmly along for the ride for the second. I have since picked up #0 and every issue that followed.

Another example that may be relevant is the current Hush storyline in Batman. While I haven’t skipped the story, I have been pretty vocal in how I felt about it. But what was the first book that I read when I got back from the comic shop last week? Did I read Red Son #3, or Beware the Creeper #5, both final issues of great miniseries? Nope. How about Flash #201, a book I have been reading since #1? Wrong. The first book I read was Batman #618. And I loved it. I am actually curious as to how this is going to end. Personally I think that Hush is Morse. Hush = Be Quiet. Morse Code = Communicating without talking. He even had surgery over the summer, which would explain the bandages. Think about it. It would make more sense for it to be Daron, he’s the evil one. As for a series I blew off and regretted, I also came in late on Hush, but more I deliberately did not buy the current Hawkman book for like the first ten issues because I felt I was buying enough books already and I regret it now cuz I don’t really feel like buying the TPB but borrowed my friend’s copies and loved it. –Ben)

Mike Z, you want to close the column for the week?

How did Nuklon gain the power to grow? or am I mis-remembering my Infinity, Inc.?

Way back in the 1986 version of “Who’s Who” it states that Nuklon’s exposure to thorium radiation “enabled him to increase his size to double his 7’6” height.” So I guess he did have the ability to grow. I myself don’t have too many issues of Infinity Inc so I don’t know where the confusion comes from but I hope that I cleared it up. However what this doesn’t explain is his horrid Mohawk. Was that ever really cool? You’re just jealous because your mullet doesn’t look as cool. –Ben

Well that is going to do it for this week. I have been getting a lot of questions about Infinity Inc and it’s members, so that will probably be the focus of next week’s column. That and whatever you should happen to post or email me. Oh and Mike Z didn’t respond to my lyric at the end of last week’s column. But then again he didn’t email me any questions at all. Since it was a holiday and he is a family man, I won’t gloat about my stumping him until next week’s column. I shall catch you in the future. Oh yeah this weeks question is: What canceled book do you miss the most and why?

“Breathe out, so I can breathe you in. Hold you in.”

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