Saturday, October 28, 2017

Super-Spinoffs: Girl Power! Part II: The Complicated Timelines of Power Girl!


c. 1916: Kal-L (Superman I) is born on Krypton to Jor-L and Lora. Not long afterwards, Kara (Power Girl) is born to Jor-L's brother Zor-L and his wife Allura in Kandor. Krypton explodes and Kal-L is rocketed to Earth, where he is found and adopted by John and Mary Kent. They name him Clark Kent. Jor-L's brother and sister-in-law, Zor-L and Allura, also launch their daughter Kara, but her journey is longer; she does not arrive for many years.

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All-Star Comics #58 (Jan./Feb. 1976)--Power Girl and Star-Spangled Kid join the Justice Society. Power Girl is Superman's long-lost cousin. The Kid adopts Starman's cosmic rod. 

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Showcase #97-98 (Feb.–Mar. 1978)--Power Girl is forced to battle the intelligent "symbio-ship" that brought her to Earth. This was the first account of Power Girl's origin.

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Showcase #99 (Apr. 1978)--With the help of reporter Andrew Vinson, Power Girl adopts the secret identity of Karen Steele. She rescues the Flash and Green Lantern from Brain Wave in Keystone City.

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Infinity, Inc. #1 (Mar. 1984)--THE GENERATIONS SAGA--Jade (Jennifer-Lynn Hayden), Northwind (Norda of Feithera), Nuklon (Albert Rothstein), Obsidian (Todd Rice), Silver Scarab (Hector Hall) (first chronological appearances) and Fury II (Hippolyta Trevor) attempt to join the Justice Society, but are rejected. They leave angrily, accompanied by Huntress and Power Girl. NOTES: The Infinitors' first appearance in print was in All-Star Squadron #25, except for Fury, who first appeared in Wonder Woman #300. Fury II is the daughter of Wonder Woman and Steve Trevor; Jade and Obsidian are the children of Green Lantern and the Thorn, Silver Scarab is the son of Hawkman and Hawkgirl, Northwind is Hawkman's godson, and Nuklon is the godson of the Atom.

Last Days of the JSA (1986)--The surviving JSA members are sent to Asgard, the home of the Norse gods, where they must repeat the Ragnarok cycle for all eternity in order to prevent the Earth from being destroyed. Only Doctor Fate, Power Girl, and the Star-Spangled Kid are freed, released by the Spectre. NOTESBlack Canary also survived. Writer Roy Thomas has admitted he'd forgotten to mention her in this story, probably because in pre-Crisis continuity, she had been dead for some time. Secret Origins v.2 #50 (1990) later said Dinah was too sick to attend the JSA's final meeting.

Infinity, Inc. #30 (Sept. 1986)--Doctor Fate, Power Girl, and the Star-Spangled Kid return to Earth. They and the members of Infinity, Inc. mourn the loss of the JSA. NOTES: This story contained the last references to the Earth-Two Superman, Robin, and Huntress in a post-Crisis story. Despite the publication date, this story may be assumed to take place just before the events of Legends of Wonder Woman #4 and All-Star Squadron #60.

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All-Star Squadron #60 (July 1986), Legend of Wonder Woman #4 (Aug. 1986)--Mekanique and the goddess Aphrodite, who have been using their powers to hold back the full effects of the Crisis for their own purposes, allow the Crisis's reality-changing effects to take hold. 

Justice Society of America v.3 Annual #1 (July 2008)--Following the original Crisis, Superman disappears, and Power Girl heads into space to search for him.  Power Girl ends up transported from this world to the Comic Book Crossover Universe where her memories are temporarily altered.  

TVCU-2: This is the timeline for reboots and remakes. I make this the location for LOIS & CLARK, and conflate that with crossovers that involve a post-Crisis version of Superman. This could also be called the Comic Book Crossover Universe.

c. 43,000 BCE--Arion sends out exploratory Swan ships to seek new lands (at least one of these ships discovers the hidden land of Skartaris). He also (at least in a transitory hypertimeline) sends his granddaughter Kara to the future.  Roughly a century after the sinking of the City of the Golden Gate. Re: Skartaris: History of the DCU; (orig. Warlord #27 <11.79>, #39 <11.80>, -Annual #2 <83>). Re: Kara: SO v2 #11 <2.87>, TM #7. However, JSAC #4 <12.05> reveals that this “origin” was actually only one of many impermanent attempts by the timeline to “correct” for her anomalous presence from Earth-2 (or for our purposes, Rotwang's golden age timeline.)

Power Girl awakens in the present. ZHTLSO v2 #11 <2.87>, IInc. Annual #2 <88>; (1st app. A-SC #58 <1-2.76>) (The ZH timeline actually seems roughly on the mark in this case.) Due to Kara’s powers and her arrival “craft,” she and Superman initially conclude they may share similar origins. This has now been relegated to an apparent hypertimeline, however, per JSA Classified #4 <12.05>—rendering questionable any mainstream DCU history for Kara prior to the events of Crisis on Infinite Earths #11 <2.86>, when she arrived from Earth-2 [or Rotwang's Golden Age Timeline] via the reality bottleneck at the Dawn of Time. If she did in fact arrive at this earlier date, no explanation has yet been provided.

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Power Girl discovers evidence of her Atlantean heritage.  Secret Origins v2 #11 <2.87>. However, JSA v2 #50 <9.03> first cast doubt on this account, meant at the time to be genuine, and the truth (she really was from the pre-Crisis Earth-2, all attempts at temporal logic aside!) was finally clarified in JSA Classified #1-4 <9-12.05> and Infinite Crisis #2 <1.06>. This Atlantean evidence was apparently an unconscious attempt by the timestream itself to reconcile her anomalous presence. It stands to reason that she may actually have no valid “origin” at all within the current DCU.

Justice League Int'l v.1 #24 (Feb. 1989)--Justice League Europe founded. Roster: Animal Man, Captain Atom, Elongated Man, Flash III, Metamorpho, Power Girl, Rocket Red. The impostor "Hawkman & Hawkwoman" resign. NOTES: Animal Man, Metamorpho and Power Girl are first-time members. After this, Martian Manhunter installs Animal Man's JLA security system (Animal Man #9, 1989)

Justice League Europe #8 (Nov. 1989)--THE TEASDALE IMPERATIVE--Power Girl is critically injured by the Gray Man, who is eventually defeated by the Spectre. After this mission, Batman apparently adopts part-time status.

Justice League Europe #9 (Dec. 1989)--Superman aids Power Girl's surgery, who recovers, but loses her vision powers and some strength and invulnerability.

Justice League Europe #42 (Sept. 1992)--JLE vs. Echidna. Power Girl resolves the situation by agreeing to return to the Underworld once a year and learn from Echidna.

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Justice League Europe #46 (Jan. 1993)--RED WINTER--Power Girl visits Aquaman's Atlantis for the first time. Catherine consults with the Rubikskaya twins about the situation in Russia.

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Justice League Europe #52 (Early July 1993)--In Bombay, Maya is kidnapped by her parents and their cult of Shiva. The Mahayogi is sent to preoccupy Power Girl and Doctor Light. Power Girl reveals she is pregnant.

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Justice League Quarterly #13 (Winter 1993)--Maxima chooses Captain Atom as her newest conquest. Just then her former betrothed from Almerac, Ultraa, comes to Earth for her. She lets them fight for her but eventually sends Ultraa away. Power Girl again meets her grandfather Arion, who frees her from dark magic inside her. NOTES: Also contains a Praxis story. This is the first post-Crisis appearance of Ultraa, who was formerly of Earth Prime. His appearance here retroactively eliminates all previous appearances.

Justice League Europe #61-62 (2-3. 1994)--Green Lantern leaves the League on personal business. Power Girl's child manifests its protective force field when Godfrey's parents attack. Godfrey's father mutates into a powerful form with the power of a star. In this battle, Metamorpho mutates into a new form. (#61) Godfrey comes out of his "shell" and reveals he is Gaius. He'd left his family because they drove him to take part in atrocities. His guilt paralyzed him and he masked his appearance and fled to Earth. When his family threatened the JLE, he awakened. He returns with his family in hopes of changing them. (#62) 1st app. Osiris. Guest star: Erewhon.

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Justice League Europe #67 (Aug. 1994)--Doctor Light, Maya and Power Girl resign. The U.N. abandons the League and Wonder Woman, J'onn and Captain Atom all begin recruiting members for new Justice Leagues. Wonder Woman offers membership to Osiris and Seneca, who apparently decline. The hero Triumph appears amid the time fluctuations of the "Zero Hour." NOTE: The Erewhon storyline was left unfinished.

Zero Hour #0 (Sept. 1994)--With the help of the Spectre, Parallax is stopped from remaking the universe in his own image. The universe is restarted at the Dawn of Time, causing historical changes and anomalies. Power Girl gives birth to a boy. NOTE: This is presumably when the Spectre first senses Parallax's great evil within Jordan. In general, however, changes were minor to other characters' continuity. Over time, after the Crisis, almost all characters' continuities continued to change. This was later explained in the Infinite Crisis as having either been a result of Superboy Prime's blows, or because the universe hadn't yet "settled" into its proper place. Examples of this are the ever-changing histories of Power Girl and Hawkman and the redefining of the Justice League's early days. The most significant change to continuity from Zero Hour was the complete reboot of the Legion of Super-Heroes.

Justice League America #93 (Nov. 1994)--After an unsuccessful attempt to commandeer the League, Max collapses from a brain tumor. Arion summons Power Girl and her son, whom Scarabus is trying to kill.

Justice League America #94 (Dec. 1994)--Max learns that he has brain cancer, and it's revealed he is a member of the Arcana (a new incarnation of the Royal Flush Gang, not named until later). Power Girl manifests Atlantean magic powers.

Justice League America #97 (Mar. 1995)--The original Icemaiden returns. Artemis IV arrives, seeking to assume Diana's leadership of the JLA. She is met with indifference. Power Girl's child disappears.

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Justice League America #107 (Jan. 1996)--Scarabus' evil erupts, awakening he and Power Girl's son, Equinox. Obsidian goes on a date with a woman named Karen. Guest appearances: Lionheart, Superboy, Green Lantern.

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As Superman, Batman, and Wonder Woman bandy recriminations among the ruins on the Moon… resurgent war rages around Polaris, and the Secret Society demolishes the Freedom Fighters. The Rock of Eternity detonates above Gotham, Donna Troy departs for space with a contingent of volunteers, the OMACs begin to regroup and renew their attacks… and observing the chaotic beginnings of this “Infinite Crisis” from another realm, four long-lost figures decide it is time to return: the Golden Age Superman and Lois Lane, the Earth-Prime Superboy, and the Earth-3/Mirror Universe Alexander Luthor.  Infinite Crisis #1 <12.05>. Contrary to appearances, events on the moon and the Society/FF showdown (both in the immediate aftermath of the Watchtower explosion) cannot be simultaneous with the Gotham or Bl├╝dhaven events in this issue. At least three days must elapse between the opening and closing scenes, to accommodate (A) the events of JLA #120-124 <12.05-3.06>, spanning at least two days after the explosion (on the second of which Donna appears and recruits Supergirl), and ending in Gotham on the evening of the Rock’s detonation, as well as (B) Wonder Woman’s submission to the ICC at the Hague in WW v2 #222-23 <11-12.05>, spanning at least two days, on the first of which Donna and Kara visit her there. This period also must include (C) Kara’s farewell to Superman, in Superman v2 #223 <1.06>, and (D) Superman’s final confrontation with the true Ruin (Emil Hamilton) [Adv.Supes #646-47 <1-2.06>], during which time Lois Lane also visits Diana at the Hague—among many other stories. The end of this tale and subsequent issues then proceed as depicted. The four surprise observers have not been seen since they departed our reality at the end of the Crisis on Infinite Earths, save for a cameo at the end of Kingdom. Note that the captions referring to “the Polaris galaxy” are incorrect; Polaris is a star in the Milky Way, 431 light years from Earth. The date, meanwhile, is derived from Green Lantern’s reference in IC #6 to the new baseball season starting “next week” (and corroborated by the “early spring” setting for Superman #650, “one year later”).

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Infinite Crisis #2 (Jan. 2006)--Batman attempts to recover data from the Watchtower's black box. He's interrupted by Brother Eye, which claims that 60% of the OMACs have been disabled. Animal Man and Red Tornado join Donna Troy's crusade. Power Girl meets her cousin — the Superman of the Golden Age Reality and (re)learns the history of Rotwang's Pocket Universe. Alex Luthor claims that she was not meant to survive the collapse of the pocket timeline, and the Comic Book Crossover Universe unsuccessfully tried to reconcile her existence with false histories. Booster Gold reappears in the 21st century, having gone back to his future.

Image result for Alexander Luthor of the original Mirror Universe reveals his plans to Power Girl Infinite Crisis #4 (Mar. 2006)--Alexander Luthor of the original Mirror Universe reveals his plans to Power Girl, who he's chained to his tower along with the Ray, J'onn, Lady Quark & Black Adam. He claims to want to erase everyting that's "bad" a wrong with the world. With this power, Luthor plans to divide the universe in two. To power his tower, they force Black Adam to invoke Shazam's name, bringing wild magic into the tower. Luthor divides the universe, creating a second Earth once more. Those who once hailed from Rotwang's Pocket Reality are taken back there.

June 2006--Infinite Crisis #7 --Heroes grieve for Superboy. Metropolis explodes into metahuman war. Bane kills Judomaster. Prometheus kills Deadline. Black Adam beheads Amazo. Superboy-Prime kills Grundy, Mongrel, Geist, Razorsharp, Ballistic, Nightblade, Baron Blitzkrieg, Charaxes and Major Disaster. The Supermen burst in to save the day, taking on Doomsday. Dr. Light has regained her powers. Superman (Kal-L of Rotwang's pocket reality) confronts Alex Luthor finally, but is overcome by Superboy. Bart Allen returns, having grown several years and wearing his grandfather's uniform. He claims that he was the only Flash to be able to return to help against Superboy. Superboy heads for Oa, hoping its destruction will restart the universe. En route, he blasts Zauriel and Breach (who turns into Captain Atom). Looker and Technocrat may have been caught in this blast. Alex Luthor blasts Nightwing. The Lanterns merely slow Superboy, who kills Galius Zed and a Lantern that looks like Tellus. Batman confronts Alex, picking up a gun, and fires, but the gun is empty. Wonder Woman enters with a sword and throws it down. In a way, they're even now. A building collapses and buries Alex. The Supermen take Superboy into a kryptonite field, which doesn't affect him as much, they continue to head straight through Krypton's sun, and crash land on Mogo. All of them find their powers diminished. Superman (Kal-L of Rotwang's pocket universe) dies from the battle after saying goodbye to Power Girl, Superman (Clark Kent of TVCU2) is left powerless among kryptonite and Superboy is taken captive by the Lantern Corps. Many of the heroes who were in space disappear. A boy on a beach finds a lantern (that of the Tangent universe Green Lantern). Bart hands over the Flash mantle to Jay again, saying that Wally and Linda disappeared with their twins. The Speed Force is destroyed and Bart's power is gone. Jay retains his metahuman speed. Alex Luthor is found by Lex and the Joker, who is still bitter about being ignored. Joker kills him. Diana, Clark and Bruce meet in Gotham. Clark is powerless, Diana sets out to find herself, and Bruce plans to take Rick and Tim on a trip of rediscovery. Final page foreshadows things to come. On Oa, Superboy plots a way out of his green prison. 32 Lanterns died. 50 now guard him. NOTE:When this story was collected in trade paperback, the clicking sound of Batman firing the gun was removed.

The Justice Society of America formally re-forms, incorporating a whole new generation of legacy heroes, and quickly takes on Vandal Savage and the neo-Nazi Fourth Reich. Power Girl is chosen as chair.  JSA v4 #1-4 <2-5.07>. New members initially include Typhoon, Wildcat II, Damage, Starman VIII, and Citizen Steel. The story falls after the “League has spent weeks tracing bloodlines [and] gathering… intel” on legacy heroes—the “help” promised in July. The constraints of other events almost certainly put this story in early November, notwithstanding the “December” calendar seen hanging in Starman’s mental ward. Note that there is unseasonably early snow seen in the Virginia scenes, although not in Boston or Ohio—a sign of early winter weather that seems to feature in several other DCU stories around this timeframe. Note that the personal history given for Nathan Heywood in #2-3 could be construed to imply that his cousin Hank’s career as Steel (and, thus, the original Crisis) fell only two to three years earlier—but that is clearly inaccurate, and a larger gap between Hank and Nate must be interpolated.

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Justice Society of America v.3 #17 (Aug. 2008)--The old god Gog marches across Africa, proclaiming he is Earth's protector; he sends Power Girl back in time to Rotwang's reality just after the Crisis, which he senses is her true home.

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Justice Society of America v.3 Annual #1 (July 2008)--Power Girl appears back in Rotwang's reality, back just after the Crisis ended, where things appear very much like she remembers. The JSA has become the Justice Society Infinity, and Huntress has resigned. Huntress' boyfriend, Harry Sims, has been maimed by the Joker. Huntress finds Power Girl unconscious and delivers her to the JSI. When she wakes, she meets the J.S.I., but still feels like she doesn't belong. Later, after helping the Huntress take down the Joker, Power Girl's 1986 counterpart returns from space. She calls Kara an impostor and sets the JSI on her tail. Flash and Green Lantern have retired; Superman is missing. NOTE: Features pin-up of the entire JSA by Dale Eaglesham.

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Justice Society of America v.3 #20 (Dec. 2008)--The 1986 Power Girl flies off the handle. Some of the modern JSA are brought back to Rotwang's world with the JSI. Huntress interrogates the current day Power Girl in the Batcave and eventually relents. The JSA locates them and Starman reveals that his suit is actually a map of the multiverse, made by three Brainiac 5s. Jade says that Alan Scott is dead. 

October 2009--POWER GIRL # 4--"Girls' Night Out"--From James Bojaciuk: The main cast of Big Bang Theory accosts Power Girl at a movie theatre. Big Bang Theory is probably in the TVCU, as in one episode they bought a time machine from the 1960 Time Machine movie that apparently worked (and then they were attacked by morlocks--in what might've been a dream sequence). That said, even if Big Bang Theory *is* in, this would be the AU Power Girl that Dennis wrote about in some of his articles. (From me: I disagree a bit with James. I believe this to be the cousin of the golden age Superman, who also came from Krypton of Rotwang's pocket reality, but arrives much later in 1976. When Mecanique manipulated the Crisis, Kara found herself trapped in the TVCU2 timeline and temporarily believed herself to be from ancient Atlantis, the granddaughter of Arion, but by the point of this story, her original memories were restored.)

OTHER ALTERNATE REALITIES: Time travelers, when they jump through time, mess things up. Nature abhors time travel and tries to right itself. This must be what is going on in the D.C. television universe. But the time stream is muddied.

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Earth-2--This world mainly features modernised versions of DC's heroes from the Golden Age of Comics and characters associated with later Justice Society and Infinity Inc comics. Notable character differences among many include a younger, gay version of Alan Scott, the Golden Age Green Lantern, who leads the Wonders; Superman is succeeded by Val-Zod, a black-skinned Kryptonian pacifist; Aquawoman (Marella) is the Queen of Atlantis; Terry Sloan, formerly known as Mr 8, is a universe-hopping villain; and Oliver Queen is the Red Arrow. The backstory for Earth 2 stories is that Apokolips invaded five years prior to Earth 2 #1, killing Batman, Superman, and Wonder Woman. The ensuing Earth 2 (2012–2015) and Earth 2: World's End (2014–2015) stories depict the formation of a new group of heroes ("Wonders") who try and fail to save the Earth from Darkseid's second invasion attempt. This world's Supergirl and Robin were transported to Prime Earth during the war, where they assumed the identities of Power Girl and Huntress; they later relocate to Earth 2 in World's End. Following the destruction of Earth 2 by Darkseid, the assembled heroes restart human civilisation on a new planet in Earth 2 Society (2015-2017).


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