Who Are the Archie Heroes? Part II

Who Are the Archie Heroes? Part II

To Recap: As you probably know by now, the announcement was made at SDCC that the “Archie heroes” would be making their return in the pages of DC’s The Brave and The Bold. We decided to take a look back and give a little bit of a primer on who the mainstays were. Bear in mind these two facts: number one, the complete line-up of who may appear is yet unknown, so we’re focusing on the bigs, and number two, these characters will be appearing in the DCU for the “first” time. And even though it wasn’t a proper DCU line, you are not required to remember the brief Impact! Iteration of the early ‘90s.

Last time, we looked at The Shield, The Comet, and The Web.

This time, we roll with . . .

The Jaguar

Name: Ralph Hardy

First Appearance: Adventures of the Jaguar #1 (1961)

Powers: A metric-ton of animal-based abilities, including animal communication, “the strength of a million elephants” and other hyperbole

The Deal: Zoologist Hardy stumbles upon an Incan temple while running from a massive reptile unleashed by an earthquake in Peru. Hardy finds a jaguar-skin belt inscribed with instructions for using the belt to gain the powers of the animal kingdom. Using the belt to escape his situation, the becomes The Jaguar. The Jaguar does become a member of The Mighty Crusaders.

The Fly

Name: Thomas Troy

First Appearance: Adventure of The Fly (1959)

Powers: Through his magic ring, The Fly can, well, fly, use incredible strength (100 times that of a normal human), wall-crawl, see in every direction, create large winds with his wings, and project light. He also used “The Buzz Gun”, which fired stingers or sound, depending.

The Deal: A young man who lives in an orphanage, Troy meets an old couple on a service project that turn out to be wizards. He finds a fly-shaped ring in their house. Once he tries it on, he is contacted by Turan of the Fly People. Turan tells him how to use the ring to become a champion; Troy also becomes an adult when he becomes The Fly. The Fly later acquires a sidekick, Flygirl, 30 years or so before [i]In Living Color[/i.]. Both heroes become members of the Mighty Crusaders.

The Black Hood

Name: Kip Burland

First Appearance: Top-Notch Comics #9 (1940)

Powers: None, but the second Black Hood used a variety of special guns for various effects.

The Deal: A framed and wounded police officer, Burland initially becomes the Hood to clear his name. The Black Hood I would go on to join the Mighty Crusaders.

Interestingly, Burland’s cousin, also named Kip Burland, becomes a Black Hood. In his origin story (from Archie’s Super Hero Special Digest in 1979), the Black Hood identity is explained as a type of generational thing. Black Hood II replaces I in the Mighty Crusaders, but no one is quiet sure why.

The Mighty Crusaders

Members: First team: The Shield III, The Comet, The Black Hood I, The Fly and Flygirl. Second team: The Shield III, The Comet, The Black Hood I, The Fly, Flygirl, The Web II, The Black Hood II, The Shield II, Darkling, and Jaguar.

First Appearance: First team, The Mighty Crusaders #1 in 1965 (though they were technically banded together in The Fly’s book); second team, The Mighty Crusaders #1 in 1983.

The Deal: Hey, we’ve got a bunch of characters, and the JLA and the Avengers seem to be working out! Seriously, though, the Crusaders follow a time-honored tradition of having your big stars get together in one book.

All right, kids; that’s another brief look at the Archie Heroes. We aren’t sure who will be showing for sure in the pages of The Brave and the Bold, but it’s clear that there’s a fun batch to choose from. We'll have more as the mists start to clear.

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