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My DC: Darkseid September 29, 2011

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This is it, the last one.  And I’ve made some pretty big changes to the character.

What is Apokolips now?  It’s not a planet.  It’s actually a massive world-ship, and the fire-pits aren’t just there to make it look death metal, those are actually the exhausts of engines.  The planet’s population are all conquered slaves, many of them generations into their captivity, who have come to worship Darkseid as a god.

Who is Darkseid?  The oldest known being in the universe, as old or even older than the Guardians of Oa.  He is immortal and the very last of his kind.  Once, eons ago, he had a race . . . a family . . . but they are gone and he is alone.  He only wants one thing: to die.  And he’s willing to destroy the whole universe to do it.

The Anti-Life Equation is said to be the only thing that can kill Darkseid.  What it is exactly is a mystery, though many say the mystery can be answered beyond the Source Wall.  The only thing that is certain is that if it were found, life would end.   Everywhere.

Darkseid patrols the universe in his world-ship Apokolips, seeking the Anti-Life Equation, and conquering worlds so that he can replenish his population of slaves and keep his ship functioning.

And that’s the end of this series folks.  Thanks for playing along!  My next post is going to be a big announcement about the future of my blogging.

My DC: Justice League September 27, 2011

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I know that I originally stated that my Justice League lineup would be larger than this, but I think cooler heads have prevailed and I’ve made it just a bit more managable.

These are the members:

Batman – My Batman is a mix of the animated series Bats and that from The Long Halloween.

Superman – Already explained in previous post.

Wonder Woman – Already explained in a previous post.

Green Lantern – John Stewart as he appeared in JLU, shaved head and goatee and all.

Flash – Wally West as he appeared in JLU.

Martian Manhunter – Already explained in previous post.

Aquaman – Already explained in previous post.

Hawkgirl – Shayera Hol is a military officer from the planet Thanagar, assigned as a liason to Earth. Rather than post her with any particular governmental organization, her commanders thought it wiser to put her with the unaligned Justice League.

The Atom – Ryan Choi was a colleague and student of the famous Dr. Ray Palmer. Together they made the discovery which allows Ryan to shrink in size and fight crime as the Atom.

Green Arrow – Oliver Queen, a little bit older and saltier than many of his teammates, rocking a long bow and the Robin Hood goatee.

Black Canary – Pretty much doesn’t need any change from classic interpretations.

Mr. Terrific – Michael Holt was the third-smartest man in the world, a millionaire, and an Olympic gold metalist – dubbed “Mr. Terrific” by the media. After the death of his wife in a traffic accident he determined to do everything in his power to make the world a better place. One of those initiatives was to approach Superman, Wonder Woman and Green Lantern about founding the Justice League . . . to protect the world the way that the Justice Society of America once did. His T-spheres keep him in constant communication with the orbital Justice League watchtower (which he also built, with additional technological and financial help from WayneTech and Queen Industries). It is through his T-spheres constant updates that he is able to dispatch League members to various hot-zones.

Power Girl – An attempt to replicate the solar-based powers resulted in disaster and the loss of many lives. In the resultant explosion, Karen Starr was transformed into the powerhouse Power Girl.

Manitou Raven – A time-lost shaman from a forgotten age before Atlantis was lost beneath the oceans. Joe Kelly brought Raven into main DC continuity as an homage to the classic superfriend Apache Chief. Mine would be very close to this version. He casts magic of a complicated and ritualistic bent, and carries two weapons: a staff which is said to be cleaved from the universe itself and a tomahawk of obsidian which cannot cut a righteous man. Rather than saying “Inukchuk” as he cast magic, I would imagine this as a war cry. Being a man more than 3000 years outside of his proper time the Justice League felt they had no choice but to welcome him into their fold. . . the dangers of having him out there alone, both to himself and others, were far too great.

My DC: Cosmology September 25, 2011

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This may be among my more hated posts in this series as it is going to start to introduce some of the more radical changes I have come up with so far.

Who are the New Gods? A more accurate question might be . . . WHAT New Gods?

I just made thousands hate me, but I really don’t like the New Gods. There would only be three Fourth Worlders that remain in My DC: Metron, Mr. Miracle, and Darkseid (Darkseid is going to get his own post).

Mr. Miracle – Is a rather ordinary man by the name of Shilo Norman, with amazing skills in escapistry. He will have been the only person to ever have escaped Apokolips. More on Apokolips in a later post.

Metron – He is a being of seemingly limitless power from a distant future far beyond even the Legion of Superheroes. He drifts through time and space in his Mobius Chair, observing.

The Spectre – For years in the comics he has been known as the Angel of Vengeance. A spirit of divine retribution. Let’s never go into specific answers. It’s far more interesting to imply things sometimes.

The Phantom Stranger – Another great example of implying rather than outright saying. No one has ever conclusively stated a previous origin for the Phantom Stranger. Let’s take a look at what Wikipedia says about the four postulated origins over the years:

1) One proposes the Stranger was originally a private citizen during biblical times and was spared God’s wrath. An angel was sent to deliver him from divine wrath. After questioning God’s actions, he commits suicide. The angel forbids his spirit from entering the afterlife, reanimates his body and condemns him to walk the world forever to be a part of humanity but also forever separated from it. He then discovered his divine charge, to turn humanity away from evil, one soul at a time

2) In a variation of the Wandering Jew story, he was a man named Isaac with a wife (Rebecca) and a son during the time of Jesus’ childhood. When King Herod heard that there was born a child who would be king of the Jews, he ordered the deaths of all baby boys in order to kill the Christ child. Among the people killed were Isaac’s wife and son. Blind with anger, he spent the next 30 years in a rage against Jesus. Later, after being tried in part by Herod’s son, Jesus was subjected to torture. On learning this, Isaac bribed a guard to assume his role in the flagellation of Christ. Upon this Jesus sentenced him into exile from his home and to wander until Doomsday. After the crucifixion, Isaac recognized his mistake and let go of his anger. He has since spent the rest of his life helping society, even declining an offer from God, father of Jesus himself, to release him from his sentence.

3) Another was a proposal that the stranger is a remnant of the previous universe. At the end of the universe the Phantom Stranger approaches a group of scientists studying the event, warning them not to interfere in the natural conclusion of the universe. The story concludes with the Phantom Stranger passing a portion of himself to a scientist, the universe is reborn, and the scientist from the previous universe is the Phantom Stranger in the new universe.

4) The final tale postulated that the Stranger was a fallen angel who sided with neither Heaven nor Hell during Satan’s rebellion and thus condemned to walk the Earth alone for all time. Alan Moore wrote and Joe Orlando illustrated this story. This is also backed by The Word who said that the Phantom Stranger was a fallen one.

So which do we choose? Let’s not and say we did, eh? Let’s have the Phantom Stranger as a mysterious being doomed to forever wander and leave it at that, eh?

An idea I do like, though, is that the Phantom Stranger would not be able to interfere with matters directly. He could only nudge things, and people would be left to make their own choices.

The Source Wall – It exists at the end of the universe, preventing any who would attempt to cross it. Many have tried. Explorers. Warlords. Madmen. They have all gotten trapped, entombed within the Wall as a warning to others. What lay beyond no one knows (it is not parallel Earth’s in my version.

The Source – What is it? Who is it? Does it even exist. Is it God, or something else? Everyone speculates, but no one actually knows. We’re not going to provide answers to the most primal of theological and philosophical questions in a comic book. Any attempt is wasted effort.

My DC: Checkmate September 23, 2011

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Checkmate is the government organization that monitors and polices metahuman activity. They are clandestine and ruthless in how they do business. They have existed since the late 1940s and were in part responsible for getting the Justice Society of America shut down in the early 1950s. They classified the adventures of the Challengers of the Unknown.

There is currently a factionalization within the organization. Loyalties are being decided between two senior directors: Maxwell Lord and Amanda Waller.

Each of them has their own covert team that they send out on missions. Maxwell Lord has a group known as the Doom Patrol under his jurisdiction. Amanda Waller has a group of supervillains fighting for their pardons known as the Suicide Squad.

The irony is that Max Lord is nefarious, and leads gives orders to a squad of good guys. While Waller, though not being good, certainly isn’t evil; commands a group of villains.

My DC: Martian Manhunter September 22, 2011

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It’s not recorded in the history books, but mankind first set foot on Mars in the year 1957. It was a group of scientists and adventurers known as the Challengers of the Unknown. This, like so many of their strange adventures, was rendered classified by the government agency known as Checkmate.

What is known is that they brought something back from their Mars expedition. A casket. It took government scientists decades to work out how to open it safely, and when they did they found a cryogenically preserved Martian, the last of his kind.

Once the Martian, called by his people J’onn J’onnz was revived, it was a simple task for him to use his powers to escape. Now alone in a strange world, he chose to defend the innocent . . . a manhunter from Mars!

Powers:I’ve severely reduced the power set of Martian Manhunter in many ways. He simply had too many (in the current incarnation he even has more than Superman). In my take all of his powers and weaknesses could be attributed to two things: his telepathy and density manipulation.

The same density manipulation that allows him to ghost through walls and become invisible would enable his minimal flight (more floating) and his great strength (he becomes literally more tangible). However, it is this aspect of his biology that makes him so vulnerable to fire. The complex nature of plasmas is something his shifting densities reacts very poorly to, and will prove quickly fatal.

He no longer shapeshifts in a traditional sense. Rather, he can make himself appear to be anyone as a result of telepathic manipulation.

My DC: Wonder Woman September 22, 2011

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As Greek culture culture collapsed around them, the matriarchs of the isle of Themyscira chose to hide themselves from the world at large with magic, as a means of keeping themselves safe. And safe they were, protected by their elite military, the Amazons. But as Man’s science advanced through two world wars and the space age it became clear that they would not be able to hide forever.

The time had come for the Themyscirans to reveal themselves to the world at large. As their emissary they selected Diana, daughter of the Queen Hippolyta, hand-trained by the greatest of the Amazons.

My idea of Wonder Woman would be younger and feistier than previous versions. We’re talking about a young woman who has been raised in the sheltered environment of a princess, and suddenly the world just got opened up to here in big big ways. She would be naturally inquisitive, fun-loving and eager to explore.

All of Wonder Woman’s powers come the magical equipment that she carries and the benefits of her Amazon training.
The lasso of truth.
A breastplate that gives her mighty strength.
The bracers which give her agility and reflexes.
A spatha (ancient Greek sword) which can cut through anything.
She cannot fly.

Sorry Fox News, but Wonder Woman’s costume would not be patriotic. That just doesn’t make sense for a magical princess formed from clay from an acient Greek-styled milieu. Her costume should be based on the mystical weapons she carries . . . the pieces of armor. She would wear a leather skirt like Greek warriors did, and sandals.

My DC: Aquaman September 20, 2011

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The ocean world as I imagine it is not so much a superhero world, but fantasy . . . a place of epic heroism, knightly chivalry, and dark magic.  A place of many warring kingdoms.  The merfolk.  Lemuria.  And greatest of all, Atlantis . . . jewel of the seas.  This book would be more King Arthur than superhero fiction.

It begins as so many tragic tales do with a forbidden love.  In this case between the Atlantean princess Atlanna and a surface dweller, a lighthouse keeper named Tom Curry.  Enraged upon hearing that his daughter was pregnant with the child of a surface man, the king exiled her to spend her remaining days cut off from her people.

The child they named Arthur, called Orin in the Atlantean tongue.  A man caught between his loyalties to the surface, and the unending draw of the ocean.  Able to swim as a fish, breathe underwater as well as on land, and commune psychically with aquatic life.

Atlantis is a treacherous place.  There was a coup and the king was assassinated.  The only rightful heir to the throne was an exiled bastard, viewed as an abomination by the Atlantean people.

But the traitors who murdered the king were tyrants.  Their rule is a bloody one, and soon the voice of the ocean seems to cry out for a savior.  For a lost prince, who may be the only one who can save a people that fear him.  The sea life itself has anointed Arthur Curry it’s champion, even if his own people will not.


My DC: Krypton September 20, 2011

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One of the major questions that seems to come from Superman is why a culture that was as advanced as Krypton clearly was would perish in the face of the destruction of their planet.  Why would only a ship large enough for a single occupant escape?

You need to come up with a reason for Krypton to have the technology for interstellar travel, but deliberately have cut themselves off from space.  I imagine they were an old race, magnificent.  They were becoming soft in the comfort of their technology.  As many ancient empires did, they would have turned outward, and sought to bring many worlds under their control . . . under the guidance of a power mad conqueror by the name of Jax-Ur.

Their cruel conquest would have been met with harsh defeat at the hands of the Guardians of the Universe and their Manhunters.  In fact, this would be one of the first atrocities the Manhunters committed, killing millions of Kryptonians.

Krypton as a culture never recovered.  They became xenophobes, banning space travel for their citizenry, relying more and more on the comforts of their stagnating technology and a harsh rule by the Kryptonian military and members of the sun cult of Rao.

Only a rebel scientist by the name of Jor-El dared to challenge the system.  He managed to get an ancient Kryptonian spacecraft operational and explore some of the universe.  For his efforts he would be briefly jailed, but Jor-El never gave up the pursuit of scientific knowledge.

That is why he was the only man to realize the coming doom.  A coronal mass ejection from their red sun Rao, which would destroy Krypton, but the high council ignored his warnings.

He still had the ancient ship he had once used to explore the cosmos . . . hidden away in his laboratory . . . but it was only large enough to carry one passenger, and Jor-El’s wife Lara had recently given birth to their son Kal-El.

The choice was clear.  He programmed the ship’s navigational computer for a relatively primitive blue world he had once visited in his travels. . . a place called Earth . . .and that was the beginning . . .

My DC: Lex Luthor September 19, 2011

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It can be said that a man can be judged by the quality of his enemies.  This is even more true of a Superman.

Lex Luthor are a balance of opposites.  Superman is the strongest being on Earth.  Lex is the smartest.

Lex would have been an extremely sickly child growing up in Metropolis’ Suicide Slums.  This could account for his complete lack of body hair.  His father would have been abusive, second only to the neighborhood children.  The only way a young Lex Luthor would have survived this cruel place is through his intellect, cunning and ruthlessness.

He not only survived, he thrived.  Building himself from nothing into one of the richest men in the world.

Lex should be operating at a different level as the rest of the human race, a chess master 37 steps ahead.  He would own one of the biggest companies in the world, but leaves the day to day operation to others because it is less boring than his own research.  He’s the sort of man who would carry six blackberries and a laptop everywhere he goes, each doing different functions.  Not only that but he designed the laptop and blackberries AND wrote their software.  You could be having a face-to-face conversation with him, but he would never be doing any less than ten things at once.  Even though he is socially awkward he would still hold gala bashes to prove something to the world . . . then he would stand in the corner and avoid people, all the time blaming them for shunning him.

The reason he hates Superman is both a mixture of jealousy and a sense of betrayal.

Jealousy in that Lex believes the world owes him the ultimate respect.  He is the smartest man alive!  He built himself up from nothing!  He helped shape Metropolis into the city that it is!  And they love this . . . this . . . this jock.  This alien!

Betrayal in that he wanted to work WITH Superman to begin with.  But Superman cannot be bought.  He cannot be manipulated, threatened or blackmailed.  He is the only person Lex Luthor has ever encountered in his adult life that he cannot control.

My DC: Brainiac September 18, 2011

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My conception for Brainiac is a compilation of several of the different incarnations we have seen throughout the years.

In appearance he would be like the Bronze Age version, metal body with the honeycomb brain case.  His signature three diodes would be a symbol embossed onto the metal forehead.  He would command a fleet of skull ships.

My idea, rather than being a scientist who opposed the computer tyrants of Kolu . . . he would have been one of the computer tyrants.  Kolu would have been ruled by a council of AI’s that reached logical consensus.  Brainiac wound up seeking more, seized control of the council, and had his rivals destroyed.  His obsession is perfection, and perfection in a machine mind is to know all.  He sends his fleets out from Kolu on missions of learning (which take the form of conquest).