Tuesday, January 23, 2018 • Morning Edition • "Blacklisted since 2012."

Your Top Teens part 35

Written by Chris Mitchell on Tuesday, October 13 2009 and posted in Features

Two DCers and one Marvel


82. Stature (36 points)

stature.jpgBorn with a congenital heart condition, Cassie's father became Ant-Man in order to save her. He at first stole the costume, but later was given permission to wear it. Her father would team-up with the Avengers and Iron Man on several occasions through the years. After Cassie's parents divorced, her mother and new stepfather felt that it was too dangerous for her to be around her father and got full custody of her. Visiting her father one weekend a month, she stole Pym Particles in hopes of becoming like him. Cassie even lived with the Fantastic Four for a brief period, while her father was working for them as Tech support during Reed Richards absence. When her father was killed as an Avenger by a deranged Scarlet Witch, she withdrew from her mother and stepfather and planned on running away to California to join the Runaways until she saw the Young Avengers on TV. In her attempt to join them Cassie met Kate Bishop, who joined her in trying to locate them. Cassie's powers first manifested during a fight with Patriot when she tried to get her father's belongings from the Avengers Mansion. Her ability to change size seems to be linked to her emotional state, as anger has caused her to grow and guilt to shrink.

During the Civil War, she teamed up with the Runaways to free their friends and shut down an evil S.H.I.E.L.D. base. Halfway through the war, she switched sides and helped Iron Man win the war, registering under the SHRA and joining the Initiative recruits at Camp Hammond. Recently, she was kidnapped by the Puppet Master along with Arana, Dusk, and Silverclaw, but was freed from his control by Ms. Marvel and returned back to the United States. Since then, Cassie has been staying at the Initiative Training Center at Camp Hammond, working alongside the other recruits there, even aiding them against the assault of the insane clone KIA. During this period she came into contact with Eric O'Grady, the current Ant-Man, facing off against the "hero" in a giant-sized duel when he insulted her father. Stature was one of the over sixty super humans at Camp Hammond to confront the insane clone KIA during his rampage throughout the base with the Tactigon, and like the others, was swiftly defeated by the alien super-weapon.

Cassie survived, however, and shortly thereafter was met by the current Vision, who had just completed a worldwide sojourn to discover his true identity. Meeting him in a restaurant outside of Camp Hammond, Stature lambasted the synthetic for assuming that the Initiative forces (herself included) were either dupes for the government or villains hoping to crush America's civil liberties, defending her decision to side with Iron Man as one of responsibility and honesty, going so far to suggest that the anti-Registration forces were rebelling just for the sake of rebellion or out of some romantic revolutionary ideal rather than out of an educated decision. The pair was ambushed by AIM terrorists shortly thereafter, and upon defeating them, Cassie was stunned when the Vision declared his love for her. Although intrigued by the gesture, she decided to take some time to sort out her feelings for him instead of accepting him outright. Cassie was then faced with an almost tragedy. During a fight with the Growing Man her stepfather Blake was seriously injured. The guilt caused Cassie to shrink to almost nothingness. But with help from her friends Wiccan, Hawkeye and Patriot she was able to snap out of it before she shrank to nothingness. She later saw Blake in the hospital and he forgave her.

During the Secret Invasion Cassie first fought the Skrulls during their invasion of New York. She was quickly defeated but survived the conflict. She later took part in final battle and she was able to grow larger then the Skrull Yellowjacket and take him out with a single punch. She is a member of both the Young Avengers and the Mighty Avengers along with her love interest Jonas aka Vision 2.0

81. Supergirl/Current Version (37 points)

supergirl.jpgLike the pre-Crisis version, this Kara claims to be the daughter of Superman's uncle Zor-El and his wife Alura. The new Kara is actually older than Superman; she was a teenager when he was a baby. When Krypton exploded, she was sent in a rocket (in suspended animation) to find and look after Superman. However, her rocket got caught in a huge chunk of the planet and she arrived on Earth years after her cousin did. Meanwhile, she was put in suspended animation, so while chronologically born before Kal-El, she is still the age of a teenager. Her arrival is discovered by Batman, who initially doubted that she was really Kryptonian, thinking that it was too much of a coincidence. Not to mention he couldn't understand a thing that she said because she only spoke in Kryptonian. Kara is scared being on an unfamiliar world, and unable to understand English, not knowing about the powers she gets from being on Earth does some damage.

Batman subdues her using kryptonite and brings her to the batcave to conduct more research on her but she soon awakens attempts to fly off but is prevented from doing so by Superman. Discovered by her cousin she spends a long time at the Fortress of Solitude catching up on all the time she has mist and learning about earth and its past. She is astonishingly able to learn all of Earth’s languages in just three months. During her stay at the fortress Kara does not get along with Krypto, Superman’s dog which makes Batman suspicious of her.

She become restless and pleads to go out into the world, and Superman finally allows her to as long as she stays under his supervision (no pun intended). He takes her to the Kent Farm were she spends a short time learning to control and hide her powers to appear more human. The Amazons learn of her existence and Wonder Women comes to take Kara back to their island to be properly trained in combat by Wonder Woman and Artemis. Superman is reluctant to let her go, but grudgingly concedes, seeing it would benefit her and she would be safe. Unfortunately she doesn't stay safe. She is captured by Darkseid, and after being brainwashed, attacks her own cousin.

Superman defeats her and returns her to Earth, where he fakes her death so Darkseid will not come looking for her. She then assumes the role of Supergirl. But she feels out of place, not sure where she really belongs. At the start of Kara's career as Supergirl she joins the Justice Society in a fight with Grundy but actually just watches from a distance as she talks to Star Girl who assures her they can handle it. During the battle Power Girl arrives to help the Justice Society but finds herself losing Kara to him much to her surprise which leads Kara to save her. Kara is unable to associate closely with Power Girl because their powers go out of control when they touch each other. Kara has also been feeling out of place because she does not know where she should belong. Because of this she finds most solace with the Amazons on Themyscira. She finds kindred spirits in her other "cousin" Superboy, Wonder Girl, and Starfire.

Her self-discovery is interrupted when Lex Luthor attacks her and after severely beating her using his newly developed armor uses a black kryptonite to split her into a good Kara and an evil Kara. The evil Kara states that she was sent to Earth by Zor-El for the sole purpose of killing the infant Kal-El. Zor-El had devised a special crystal that would influence her personality as she traveled to Earth, making her "innocent", thus creating the good side of Kara's personality. However, the good side became dominant. Upon the release of the evil Kara, Lex attempts to persuade her to join him but she refuses and begins to severely beat him causing Lex to flee with the evil Kara in pursuit. The good Kara is awakened later by Starfire and quickly chases after her evil self who she finds is at the Justice League watch tower. Supergirl prevents her evil form from snapping the Martian Manhunter’s neck and gives the rest of the League time to pull together. This leads to the evil Kara to fly back to Earth and Supergirl reveals her location through Jónn who she hoped read her mind. Supergirl faces off against her evil self in Gotham City and during the battle their clothes are switched leaving Superman, Batman and Wonder Woman unable to tell who the real Kara is. At the climax of the struggle between the two Karas and the Justice League, the good Kara urges Wonder Woman to use her golden lasso of truth to bind the two together and ask: "Who is Kara Zor-El?" The two Karas fuse back into a single good Kara, who decides her past is not important and acknowledges Batman, Wonder Woman, and Superman as her foster parents.

80. Jimmy Olsen (37 points)

jimmyolsen.jpgWhile first appearing in the comics as an unnamed copy boy in Action Comics #6, his first appearance as Jimmy Olsen would not be until Superman #13 as a transplant from "The Adventures of Superman" radio program in an episode airing on April 15th of 1940. During the Silver Age, Jimmy starred in his own comic book, Superman's Pal Jimmy Olsen, which featured his various adventures with and without Superman; it debuted in 1954. The stories in the title would often feature particularly outlandish situations, ranging from Jimmy being hurled back in time to Krypton before its destruction in issue #36 to dealing frequently with gorillas of all sorts. Because of these factors, the comic was regarded by some as a poorly written subsidiary title, although some readers still enjoy it for its camp value.

The major exception to this was in the early 1970s, when the singular writer/artist Jack Kirby took over the title and created his own distinctive stories as part of Jack Kirby's Fourth World, which introduced many additions to the DC Universe, including the super-villain Darkseid and Project Cadmus. The series revolved around Project Cadmus, and the genetic experiments held there, most notably cloning. The series ended in 1974 with issue #163, when Jimmy's book was folded into the anthology title Superman Family. In that book, Olsen became a more serious character who battled criminals as an investigative reporter in urban crime stories that rarely involved Superman.

Especially in the days of the Silver Age, Jimmy would often find himself temporarily transformed, for better or worse, or undergo a disguise for various purposes. The transformation tradition is still sometimes referenced in current day comics, usually through homage or parody. The following is a partial list of some of the various forms and powers that Jimmy has experienced:

1. Giant Turtle Boy: One of Jimmy's most frequently cited transformations was that of his turning into a giant turtle boy in Superman's Pal Jimmy Olsen #53 (1961).

2. Elastic Lad - Whether by serum or by alien virus, Jimmy could sometimes stretch himself, akin to Plastic Man or Mr. Fantastic. Jimmy first appeared as Elastic Lad in Jimmy Olsen #37 (1959). As Elastic Lad, Jimmy became an honorary member of the Legion of Super-Heroes in Superman's Pal Jimmy Olsen #72 (1963)

3. Flamebird- name he took as a costumed superhero, with Superman disguised as Nightwing, in the shrunken Kryptonian city of Kandor. These names were inspired by two native Kryptonian birds, the nightwing and the flamebird.

4. Speed Demon - In 1956, a month before the debut of Barry Allen as the new Flash, Jimmy drank a potion produced by a Professor Claude and briefly gained super-speed.

5. Radioactive - After being exposed himself, Jimmy began to irradiate everything in his presence.

6. Gorilla - Jimmy switched minds with a gorilla in Superman's Pal Jimmy Olsen #24 (reprinted in #114). He went about his reporting duties as a gorilla in Jimmy's clothes.

7. Monstrous beard growth - The machinations of the sinister Beard Band cause Jimmy to grow an immense beard.

8. Alien-form - Aliens transformed Jimmy into a telepathic Jovian.

9. Wolf-Man - In the vein of the popular Michael Landon 1950's film I Was a Teenage Werewolf, Jimmy found himself transformed into a werewolf in Jimmy Olsen #44 (1960).

10. Hippie - Jimmy grew a beard and joined a Superman-hating band of hippies in Jimmy Olsen #118 (1969). On the cover of this story's issue, Jimmy's seen wielding a rather humorous sign saying "Superman is a freak-out!"

11. Viking - Jimmy put on Viking armor and mistakenly thought he'd been transported 1000 years backward in time.

12. Transvestite - Jimmy would occasionally go undercover dressed as a woman, such as in Jimmy Olsen #44 (1960). Grant Morrison paid a brief homage to this in All Star Superman #4.

13. Doomsday - Also in All Star Superman #4, Jimmy takes a serum and becomes a version of Superman's foe Doomsday.

14. A genie

15. A six-armed man

16. A fire-breather

17. A water-breather

18. A human porcupine, in Jimmy Olsen #65 (1962).

19. A gorilla's husband

20. Superman on another planet, but he got upset because the civilian knew who he was.


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