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Continuity-Related Comic Book Character
Huntress
Huntress 3 (Adventures Comics 466)
Information
Real name: Helena Wayne
Species: Earth
Homeworld: Earth
Universe: Earth-2A
Relatives: Bruce Wayne (father; deceased)
Selina Kyle Wayne (mother; deceased)
Richard Grayson (adopted older brother)
Occupation: Attorney with Cranston, Grayson, and Wayne
Base: Gotham City
Affiliations: Justice Society of America
Justice League of America
Voiced/Played: Barbara Joyce

Justice Society Team Member

Honorary Justice League Team Member

Helena 2 (All Star COmics 74)

Helena Wayne.
Image from All-Star Comics, #74 (Sept./Oct. 1978).

Huntress (Wonder Woman 281)

The Huntress.
Image from Wonder Woman, #281/2 (July 1981).

Huntress 1

Image from Legends of the Superheroes (1979).

Helena Wayne was the only child of Bruce and Selina Wayne, She grew up in the quiet household of Wayne Manor after her father's semiretirement and her mother's reformation. From birth Helena was trained to an extraordinary peak of physical and mental development, not because her parents had any special plan for her future life, but because they assumed such development was good for its own sake. At the same time she was exposed to the basics of crimefighting in stories her father told, and by watching the training he was giving his ward, Richard Grayson.


Background Information

In the parallel universe of Earth-Two (Earth-2A in the SuperFriends Universe), Bruce and Selina Wayne]] had a daughter, whom they named Helena Wayne. She was born on September 7th 1957 in Gotham City.[1] Selina’s villainous alias, aka the ‘Catwoman’ disappeared completely while she devoted herself to raising Helena. Young Helena was raised in a loving family, nurtured by ancestral wealth and the rich experiences of her adventurer parents.

She was educated at the best of schools, finishing college at age 18 and vigorously trained to superb athletic prowess.

Helena was almost 20 when her mother died. Unwilling to let her mother's killer escape justice, the traumatized young lady fashioned a costume for herself and a set of a personal weaponry derived from her parents' personal stock. She tracked Cernak, ultimately bringing him to justice. Once her mother's death was avenged, Helena decided to continue to fight crime and pursue justice. She code-named herself "the Huntress" (but elected not to tell her father about her new identity).[2]

Bruce also succumbed to his wife’s death. He fell under the sway of the Psycho-Pirate, who convinced him to use his office as police commissioner to brand the Justice Society of America as outlaws. The Huntress followed this case with some interest, observing from the shadows. She was relieved when the Justice Society figured out the Psycho Pirate's role and magically dispelled the villain's malign influence.[3]

She later intervened in a JSA case when Wildcat and the Star-Spangled Kid thwarted the Strike Force, a criminal operation financed by the Star-Spangled Kid's family fortune.[4] The Star-Spangled Kid resigned from active duty after this case. When he did, the Huntress revealed her identity to the JSA and joined full-time.[5]

During the late 70’s, Helena Wayne, she took a fast track to her law degree. During her time at Harvard Law School, she was editor of the prestigious Harvard Law Review, and graduated valedictorian. She moved into an upscale penthouse apartment in the Innwood district of Gotham City and became a junior partner in the a public interest law firm, Cranston and Grayson established by Richard Grayson and his partner, Arthur Cranston. By this time, Dick Grayson no longer played an active role in his firm because he was appointed to diplomatic service abroad.[6] By this time, Dick had surmised Helena’s secret but vowed not to tell Bruce.[7]

As the Huntress, Helena leveraged the JSA's resources to travel to Earth-One in search of advice on her crime fighting career—from that world's Batman and Robin. They introduced her to Kathy Kane (aka Batwoman), and Barbara Gordon (aka Batgirl), and helped them stop Poison Ivy, Madame Zodiac—and the Earth-One Catwoman. Before returning, Helena promised to keep in touch and began calling Earth-One's Batman her "Uncle Bruce."[8] During this time she was also confronted by her villainous namesake—the first Huntress. The Huntress defeated the villain with a little help from fellow JSAer, the Green Lantern.[9] She also became best friends with another newcomer to the JSA, Superman's cousin, Power Girl. She helped her develop her secret identity as Karen Starr. Occasionally the Huntress worked with Robin, as when they helped the JSA defeat the Master Summoner.[10] She returned to Earth-One with the JSA for one of their annual meetings with the Justice League. This meeting was marred by a time-tossed battle with adventurers from other eras of history, engineered by the Lord of Time.[11] She also helped the JSA defeat the Secret Society of Super-Villains.[12]

Before the end of the decade, knowing he had terminal cancer, Bruce decided to confront the villain known as Jenson, knowing it could be his last battle – and sadly, it was! Bruce was buried next to his wife and parents. The funeral was attended by Helena, Dick Grayson, Alfred Beagle, and the Justice Society. At the funeral, a grieving Helena persuaded Dick Grayson not to take up Batman's mantle, and to let her father and his legacy rest in peace.[13] Her father's death hardened Helena's resolve to fight crime. She became the principal guardian of Gotham City and came to work closely with its newest District Attorney, Harry Sims.[14] In her next meeting with the Justice League, the Huntress broke the sad news to Earth-One's Batman. This visit was cursed by the murder of another JSA member, Mister Terrific. Batman of Earth-One and the Huntress led the investigation.[15]

Over the years, Richard and Helena also kept up ties to Earth-One's Batman.[16] Helena even spent Christmas with Bruce on year.[17]

In the early 1980s, Batman of Earth-One and the Huntress teamed again when their teams were transported to New Genesis to aid the New Gods against Darkseid.[18] She also confronted a number of enemies, including the Thinker, Solomon Grundy, and the Joker.[19] She also became a police liaison as a result of her association with companion Harry Sims. In another team-up, she associated herself with the fledgling super-group Infinity Incorporated[20] but remained a member full-time of the JSA. She and Power Girl returned to Earth-One to aid Wonder Woman in stopping the Adjudicator.[21]

Gotham's new police commissioner, O'Hara, appointed Helena as liaison between the police department and the district attorney's office. As the Huntress, Helena came to the rescue of Charley Bullock — an attorney with Cranston, Grayson and Wayne — who had adopted a Batman-like identity as Blackwing to break up a protection racket run by the villainous Boa.[22]

From Hanna-Barbera's live-action Legends of the Superheroes Specials (1979)

It is revealed that the Huntress from Earth-Two is a member or honorary-member of the Justice League from Earth-One. She joins her fellow heroes at the Hall of Heroes in an honorary celebration of the retired superhero Retired Man, formerly known as the Scarlet Cyclone. The superheroes learn of an evil plot devised by a large group of supervillains, who plot to destroy the world. The heroes, including the Huntress, team-up to take down the villains. A short time later, she joins the same heroes in the Hall of Heroes once again, this time for a celebrity roast from Ed McMahon.

It is possible that these events takes place on one her many visits to see the Earth-One counterpart of her father, Bruce Wayne.


Powers and Abilities

  • Above Average Strength: Helena Wayne possessed the physical strength of a woman her age, size and weight who engaged in intensive physical exercise.
  • Hand-to-Hand Combat (Advanced): In the prime of her costumed crime-fighting career, Helena Wayne was in peak physical condition and possessed great agility, and was extremely proficient in hand-to-hand combat.
  • Archery: The Huntress was an expert marksman with a crossbow.
  • Law: At age twenty-one, Helena graduated top of her class and was class valedictorian from Harvard University; becoming an expert in all areas pertaining to civil and criminal law.


Paraphernalia

Equipment

Weapons

  • Mini-Crossbow: The Huntress employed a miniature crossbow, which she usually fastened to the side of her boot, as well as various explosive devices.


Justice League Team Members

Members of the Justice League of America

Aquaman (founding member) • Batman (founding member) • Superman (founding member) • Flash (founding member)
Green Lantern (founding member) • Martian Manhunter (founding member) • Wonder Woman (founding member)

Comic Book JLA Team Members:
Black CanaryElongated ManRed TornadoZatanna Zatara
Phantom Stranger (part-time Leaguer) • Sargon, The Sorcerer (honorary Leaguer)

Other Known Justice Leaguers:
The HuntressBlack OrchidCaptain MarvelSupergirlGreen FuryPlastic ManAtomGreen Arrow

SuperFriends Founding Members:
SupermanBatmanWonder WomanAquaman
HawkmanSamuraiGreen LanternFlashBlack Vulcan

Other Known SuperFriends Members:
HawkgirlApache ChiefEl DoradoRima

Junior SuperFriends:
RobinCyborgFirestorm
ZanJayna
Marvin WhiteWendy Harris

Mascots:
GleekWonder Dog

Justice Society Team Members

Members of the Justice Society of America

Superman (Kal-L)Wonder Woman (Major Diana Prince) • Power Girl • (Kara Zor-L) • Hawkman (Carter Hall) • Flash (Jay Garrick)
Green Lantern (Alan Scott) • Doctor Fate (Kent Nelson) • Wildcat (Theodore 'Ted' Grant) • Star-Spangled Kid (Sylvester Pemberton)
Robin (Richard Grayson) • Hourman (Rex Tyler) • Batman (Bruce Wayne) • Huntress (Helena Wayne)
Starman (Astronomer Ted Knight) • Johnny Thunder and his Thunderbolt
Doctor Mid-Nite (Dr. Charles McNider) • Spectre (Wesley Dodds)



Gallery

Attorney Wayne (Batman Family 18)

Attorney Wayne.
Image from Batman Family, #18 (June/July 1978).


Appearances

First Earth-Two Appearance:

  • DC Super-Stars, Vol. 1 #17 (Nov. / Dec. 1977) and All-Star Comics, Vol. 1 #69 (Nov. / Dec. 1977).

SuperFriends Comic Book:

Legends of the Superheroes (1979):


Notes

  • The Huntress was created by Paul Levitz and Joe Staton in response to All Star Comics inker Bob Layton's suggestion that a revamped Earth-Two Batgirl be added to the lineup of the Justice Society of America.[24]
    • Penciller Joe Staton recounted how the character was designed: “After Paul [Levitz, All Star Comics writer] had described the origin to me, I worked up sketches combining elements of Catwoman and Batman, and went in see Joe [Orlando, editor]. The short version is that Joe and I had a fine meeting, featuring Vinnie Colletta in his role as art director snoring away at full volume on the couch in the back of the room. Joe touched up the bat-elements in my original sketch, particularly the cape, giving it the scallops, and he made the belt emblem a bit more bat-like. Joe opened up his sketchpad and used my sketch as the main element in the cover design for DC Super-Stars, and I went home to pencil the final cover.”[25]
    • Staton also admitted that the character's costume was heavily inspired by the Black Cat.[26] Helena's first appearance was in DC Super Stars, #17 (Nov. / Dec. 1977), which told her origin,[27] and then All Star Comics, #69 (Nov. / Dec. 1977), which came out the same day,[28] and revealed her existence to the Justice Society of America.
  • The Huntress first appears in DC Super Stars, vol. 1 #17 (Nov. / Dec.1977),[29] which told her origin[30] and then All Star Comics, #69 (December 1977), which came out the same day[31] revealed her existence to the Justice Society of America.
  • The Huntress' affiliation with the Justice Society of America is established in All Star Comics, #69 (December 1977).[32]
  • The Huntress is featured in both segments of NBC's live-action, Legends of the Superheroes (1979); thus appearing to be a native of Earth-1A. There was no mention of her being from another earth. Her secret identity was never revealed. On Earth-Two, she is Helena Wayne, daughter of Bruce Wayne.
  • The Helena Wayne incarnation of Huntress appears as a featured character in the short-lived live-action series Birds of Prey, played by Ashley Scott. This version was mostly based on the Bronze Age Helena Wayne version, but she is named Helena Kyle, the daughter of Batman and Catwoman. She was raised by her mother without ever knowing who her father was until the former was murdered. Huntress in this series worked with Oracle and Black Canary's daughter as the primary crimefighters in Gotham City. Unlike the previous versions, this version possessed low-level superpowers, mainly enhanced strength and agility.
  • In the comic books, Huntress is shown to be a Golden-Age character, from Earth-Two; and has no counterpart on Earth-One.


Trivia

  • Two different sources are often cited as the first appearance of the Huntress. Her origin appearance takes place in flashback in DC Super-Stars, Vol. 1 #17 (December, 1977), but her first physical appearance is in All-Star Comics, Vol. 1 #69 (November, 1977).


External Links


Other Versions

Huntress DCAU The Huntress Helena Bertinelli was the daughter of mobster Franco Bertinelli. As a child, she saw her mother and father murdered by Steven Mandragora, who lusted for power. Years later, after the Thanagarian invasion, she would become the Huntress, and join the Justice League. Her membership was short lived, however. She was fired after she tracked down and attempted to kill Mandragora in his sleep. Although no longer a part of the league, she continued to work along side them on several instances.

This version of the Huntress is based on the Justice League Unlimited animated series produced for the Cartoon Network from 2004-2006.
- For more on The Huntress see article at 'DCAU'


References

  1. A personnel profile in Infinity, Inc. #7 (Oct. 1984) gave Helena's birth date as September 7th 1959, but her first appearance in DC Super-Stars, #17 (Nov./Dec. 1977) stated she was born two years after her parents' wedding. Her tombstone in Last Days of the JSA Special (1986) confirmed the year as 1957.
  2. As revealed in DC Super-Stars, #17 (Nov./Dec. 1977) .
  3. As revealed in All-Star Comics, #69 (Nov./Dec. 1977).
  4. As revealed in All-Star Comics, #70 – #71 (Jan./Feb. – March/April 1978).
  5. As revealed in All-Star Comics, #72 (May/June 1978)
  6. As revealed in Batman Family, #18/5 (June/July 1978); #19/5 (Aug./Sept. 1978) and #20/4 (Oct./Nov. 1978).
  7. As revealed in Adventure Comics #461/3 (Jan./Feb.1979).
  8. As revealed in Batman Family, #17 (April/May 1978).
  9. As revealed in All-Star Comics, #72 – #73 (May/June – July/Aug. 1978).
  10. As revealed in All-Star Comics, #74 (Sept./Oct. 1978).
  11. As revealed in Justice League of America #159 – #160 (Oct. – Nov. 1978)
  12. As revealed in Cancelled Comic Cavalcade, #2 (Fall 1978) and Justice League of America, #166 (May 1979).
  13. As revealed in Adventure Comics, #462 (March/April 1979).
  14. As revealed in Wonder Woman, #271/2 (September 1980); #272/2 (October 1980) and #273/2 (November 1980).
  15. As reveled in Justice League of America #171 – #172 (Oct. – Nov. 1979).
  16. As revealed in Justice League of America, #195 (October 1981).
  17. As revealed in Brave and the Bold, #184 (March 1982).
  18. As revealed in Justice League of America, #183 (Oct. 1980); #184 (Nov.1980) and #185 (Dec.1980).
  19. As revealed in Wonder Woman, #281/2 (July 1981) and #282/2 (August 1981).
  20. As revealed in Infinity, Inc. #1 – #12 (March 1984 – March 1985).
  21. As revealed in Wonder Woman, #291 (May 1982); #292 (June 1982) and #293 (July 1982).
  22. As revealed in Wonder Woman,#296/2 (Oct. 1982); #297/2 (Nov. 1982); #298/2 (Dec. 1982); #299/2 (January 1983).
  23. This is from the playing card from the DC Heroes RPG.
  24. Callahan, Timothy (February 2010). "The Huntress: The Daughter of the Bat and the Cat". Back Issue!. TwoMorrows Publishing (38): 71–78.
  25. Callahan, Timothy (February 2010). "The Huntress: The Daughter of the Bat and the Cat". Back Issue!. TwoMorrows Publishing (38): 71–78.
  26. Callahan, Timothy (February 2010). "The Huntress: The Daughter of the Bat and the Cat". Back Issue!. TwoMorrows Publishing (38): 71–78.
  27. McAvennie, Michael; Dolan, Hannah, ed. (2010). "1970s". DC Comics Year By Year A Visual Chronicle. Dorling Kindersley. p. 175. ISBN 978-0-7566-6742-9. DC Super Stars, #17 (Nov. / Dec. 1977) While writer Paul Levitz and artist Joe Staton introduced the Huntress to the JSA in this month's All Star Comics #69, they concurrently shaped her origin in DC Super-Stars.
  28. DC Super Stars #17 (Nov. / Dec.1977) at the Grand Comics Database "Origin and first appearance of the Helena Wayne Huntress, who simultaneously first appears in this issue and All-Star Comics (DC, 1976 series) #69, both released August 24, 1977."
  29. Go to DC Database for more on DC Super Stars, vol. 1 #17 (Nov. / Dec.1977),
  30. McAvennie, Michael; Dolan, Hannah, ed. (2010). "1970s". DC Comics Year By Year A Visual Chronicle. Dorling Kindersley. p. 175. ISBN 978-0-7566-6742-9. DC Super Stars, #17 (Nov. / Dec.1977) While writer Paul Levitz and artist Joe Staton introduced the Huntress to the JSA in this month's All Star Comics, #69, they concurrently shaped her origin in DC Super-Stars.
  31. DC Super Stars, #17 (Nov. / Dec.1977) at the Grand Comics Database "Origin and first appearance of the Helena Wayne Huntress, who simultaneously first appears in this issue and All-Star Comics (DC, 1976 series) #69, both released August 24, 1977."
  32. Go to DC Database for more on All Star Comics, vol. 1 #69 (December 1977)