All Things Supreme: Straczynski's Squadron (pt2)

Welcome back to our look at the Supremeverse. Celebrating Chaykin and Turini's announcement for the Squadron, we're looking back at Straczynski's Squadron. If you missed the first part, don't be afraid to make with the clicky.

So do I have your attention now? Feel free to take a seat, stretch your legs and let's see if I can't sate your Supreme fix for the Squadron today.

Doctor Spectrum

Army hand with a heavy heart
DC Analogue: Green Lantern
Alias: Joe Ledger
Powers: Unknown control of a crystal that's bonded to his hand
Character traits: obedient, incredibly competent, empty

Doc Spectrum seems to be just a military puppet on the surface, but that's ignoring his heavy, albeit less-than-competently-written, past.

His dad walked out on his family; his mom was a prostitute; his stepdad was abusive, and he was bullied at school. This was what I meant by "less-than-competently-written," but I suppose you're allowed to have one domestically rank past in a superteam. Ultimately, without a family or friends, this resulted in a feeling of emptiness in his life, and he realized that his life didn't have much point to it.
So he joined the army.

I think that's the heart of why he so doggedly obeys the U.S. regime -- because he has nothing else to live for no one else to turn to.

Except for maybe a second personality. Apparently, the crystal embeds a latent second mind in Joe, which occasionally manifests itself, as when Joe said,
"The children. . . the children must not fight."
when Hyperion and Zarda were fighting.

We haven't exactly seen this second personality fleshed out yet, but Chaykin will no doubt work on this.

Oh! A really big part of Joe currently is that he's fallen in love, perhaps to fill that void in his heart. Sigh.

skewing the fish-human ratio for the Squadron since 2003

DC Analogue: Aquaman
Alias: Kingsley (a name given to her by Doc Spectrum)
Powers: telepathy, ability to breathe underwater
Character traits: innocent (to the ways of man), loving, soft-spoken

Kingsley's name is a story in itself. She never even had a name until Joe gave her one -- Kingsley. There is no doubt that the two have a special bond, and yes, this is the love that I was talking about when we were wrapping up Joe.


I don't have much to say about her, except she can't (chooses not to?) talk, and instead has a telepathic bond with Doctor Spectrum. Their love for each other is really sweet.

Joe and Kingsley

And in Joe's case, it's really desperate.

And you thought Batman was a jerk

DC Analogue: Batman
Alias: Kyle Richmond
Powers: being a jerk, talent in several martial arts, being rich, having lots of toys
Character traits: hateful, vengeful, occasionally compassionate

So, Nighthawk's parents were killed when he was a kid - by a bunch of hick white supremacists. The last thing that his dad told him was,
"Hear that, Kyle? That's a nighthawk. See, most hawks hunt during the day, but their prey, well, that means their prey can see their shadow. But a hawk that hunts at night, well, you can't see its shadow. Can you?"
That's a very good line that adds depth to Nighthawk's origin. That's smart writing right there.

So Kyle became rich and hunted down criminals. The way that Gotham belongs to Batman, Chicago belongs to Nighthawk. The two differ though, in that Nighthawk has absolutely no compunction about killing. He will murder any criminal on the spot if he feels they deserve it. I'm pretty sure he's murdered every criminal he's met as well.

Nighthawk takes down the clown

Currently, Nighthawk isn't at all a part of the Squadron. Since he doesn't have any superpowers, the government doesn't think of him as much but --


So that's it for today's batch of supremeverse characters. I gotta admit, today's wasn't as strong as last time's, but that's partly because I didn't get to show any of Nighthawk's brutality. And we didn't get to see Zarda today. That's really too bad.

Tune in next time for our wrap-up of the main players in the Supremeverse, and thereafter we'll have a small follow-up to look at the upcoming creative team.

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