The Killer Elite

Made up of several of the world's best assassins, the Killer Elite live up to their names. It is unknown why these usually solitary killers decided to join forces, and unknown if they are still operate as a team. All of its members were first gathered together shortly after Neron's campaign to enslave Earth's super-villains (Underworld Unleashed; Justice League America #105) It is likely that some or all of these assassins sold their souls to Neron in exchange for some boon.

Deadshot and the Killer Elite competed against the Body Doubles for a contract from Requiem Inc., who wanted to kill a man named Richter. Deadshot surreptitiously sabotaged his team's victory because he was dating Body Double Carmen Leno at the time. (Body Doubles #1)

They were next seen when the Joker infected a host of super-villains with his mania. The Killer Elite laid siege to Iron Heights prison, but were beaten back by its warden, Gregory Wolfe, who killed Deadline. The rest were teleported away from there by Warp to the Keystone City Jail, where Deadshot also "Jokerized" Captain Boomerang. They were all brought into custody by the Flash. (Flash v.2 #179)

The group was led by Deadshot (who had long served in the Suicide Squad) and included Bolt (deceased Suicide Squad v.2 #3, returned Identity Crisis #1); Chiller, Deadline (who was killed by Warden Wolfe, Flash v.2 #179); and former League of Assassins member, Merlyn.

Deadshot •  Deadline •  Merlyn • Bolt • Chiller

NOTE: Two things seem off here. Deadshot more or less humiliated Deadline in Suicide Squad #65, and it is unlikey they'd work together after this. Also, in the Body Doubles issue Deadshot's personality is drastically altered. This should be considered apocryphal.

» FIRST APPEARANCE:  Justice League America #105 (11.95)

» FEATURED APPEARANCES:    Body Doubles: New Years Evil #1 • Justice League America #34

Lab Rats

Created by John Byrne

Robert Quinlan is a gifted scientist to developed a virtual reality traning system for the military. On it's first combat scenario, however, all the troops linked to its mainframe perished. Presumably, the government then severed ties with Quinlan, who continued to develop the system. He built a secret facility located in Maryland simply known as “the Campus”; and for test subjects, Quinlan turned to the streets. He began recruiting teenagers to volunteer for training. Usually, the Lab Rats (as they refer to themselves) have nowhere else to go, and are easily persuaded. It's a dangerous life for these kids; several have perished in successive trials. Some however, excel. On their first recorded mission, the group (Wu, Alex, Dana, Poe and Gia) managed to short-circuit the system through sheer will-power. Gia, however, lost her life. In this virtual world, one's death is mirrored in reality. (Lab Rats #1)

After this trauma, Quinlan sent the group on a supposed vacation. Secretly, however, he had sent them to check up on his friend, Abigail Gooss. Mother Goose, as she was called had created the ultimate theme park, Wonderland. By employing genetic engineers, Gooss gave life to the dragons, trolls and fairies needed to populate her artifical world. The Lab Rats discovered that the creatures were sentient and that Gooss was the mindless pawn of her evil associates. In truth, these men had hoped to profit from the death of innocents and beasts alike in Wonderland. The kids freed Gooss, who tripped Wonderland's self destruct mechanism and all the artificial beings died. Sadly, the group lost Alex on this mission when he was burned by a dragon.

Other known members of the team include the injured-listed Trilby and newcomer, Isaac. These kids also ventured into the future where they confronted and evil tyrant Superman, and they explore an alien spacecraft that seemed to exist in different dimensions and eras at the same time. At the end of their last mission all the surviving Lab Rats were killed. Quinlan, summed up his feelings about their sacrifice: “We find another bunch of Lab Rats and we start over.” The childrens' sacrifice meant nothing to their superiors.

What was the end to this story?

This series was creator-owned, so DC does not have the rights to publish them without Byrne. But why would they want to?


» SERIES: Lab Rats, 8 issues (2002-03)

The L.A.W. (Lethal Assault Weapons)

Charlton Comics Action Heroes

Blue Beetle • Nightshade •  Peacemaker • Judomaster • Captain Atom

This group of heroes represents the characters formerly published by Charlton Comics in the 1960s and later purchased by DC in 1983 (when their co-creator, Dick Giordano, was a DC editor). The characters first officially appeared at DC in the Crisis on Infinite Earths maxi-series, but most of them had their official DC in-continuity debuts shortly thereafter. Only the Charlton history of Judomaster and Tiger remained intact; the other heroes were completely reinvented. The L.A.W. #4 contains flashbacks to the W.W.II era, and DCU Heroes Secret Files places Judomaster's debut at 1941.

Before the formation of the L.A.W., there was one grouping of these heroes in Justice League Quarterly #14. This team included Captain Atom, Blue Beetle, Sarge Steel, Nightshade, Peter Cannon and Judomaster II.

The L.A.W. was formed when Avatar (formerly Judomaster's partner Tiger) kidnapped the JLA. During this adventure, Dr. Fate transformed Nightshade and a new Peacemaker debuted. It was later revealed that Tiger split from Judomaster after W.W.II and became bitter towards his old mentor. (The L.A.W. #4) Captain Atom donned his "Kingdom Come" costume, which was inspired by his original Charlton look, in L.A.W. #6. At the resolution of the case, the members intended to continue on as a team, but they were never seen grouped again.

These Action Heroes were also grouped together in Kingdom Come #1 (which was also the first appearance of a female Judomaster).

The Charlton heroes were also the inspiration for the legendary characters of The Watchmen. They were changed when writer Alan Moore wanted to take the story in a different direction.

The Blue Beetle was recently killed by Maxwell Lord. (DC Countdown) In the ensuing Crisis, Nightshade joined a group of mystics to form the Shadowpact (Day of Vengeance #1) and Judomaster was killed by Bane (Infinite Crisis #7) The Question later died of cancer (52 #38) and was succeeded by Renee Montoya. A new female Judomaster joined the Birds of Prey and the original Judomaster's son, Tommy, joined Checkmate.


Judomaster actually made an appearance prior to the L.A.W. #1 in Guy Gardner: Warrior #29. This was, however, a "joke panel" set in the Warriors bar. In it, Thunderbolt invites Judomaster to join a limbo contest going on in the back of the bar, to which Judomaster replies "I've had my fill of Limbo." —Thanks to Eric Singer

» FIRST APPEARANCE:  The L.A.W. #1 (September 1999)


DC Comics:

  • The L.A.W., 6 issues (1999)
  • Blue Beetle, 24 issues (1986-88)
  • Captain Atom, 57 issues (1987-91)
  • Suicide Squad (featuring Nightshade), 66 issues (1987-92)
  • The Question, 36 issues (1987-90)
  • The Question Quarterly, 5 issues (1990-92)
  • Peter Cannon, Thunderbolt, 12 issues (1992)
  • Captain Atom: Armageddon, 9 issues (2005–06)
  • The Blue Beetle v.2, 36 issues (2006–09)
  • The Question v.2, 6 issues (2005)
  • Blue Beetle v.3, 17 issues (2011–13)
  • Captain Atom v.2, 13 issues (2011–12)
  • The Multiversity: Pax Americana, one-shot (2014)

Charlton and other publishers:

  • Americomics, 6 issues (1983-84, Americomics)
  • Blue Beetle, 60 issues (1939-50, Fox Features; featured Dan Garrett)
  • Blue Beetle, issues #18-21 (1955, continues numbering from The Thing; featured Ted Kord)
  • Blue Beetle "v.1", 5 issues (1967-68, Charlton Comics; featured Dan Garrett)
  • Captain Atom, 12 issues (1965-67)
  • Charlton Bullseye v.1, 5 issues (1976)
  • Charlton Bullseye v.2, 2 issues (1981)
  • Judomaster, 10 issues (1966-67)

» SEE ALSO:  Dark Mark > CharltonSarge SteelObscure Characters: Charlton

Hero (Alias) 1st app. (Charlton) 1st app. (DC Comics) Info/Status
Blue Beetle II (Ted Kord) Captain Atom #83 Blue Beetle #1 Deceased DC Countdown #1 (May 1905)
Captain Atom (Nathaniel Adam, Cameron Scott, Monarch II) Space Adv. #33 Captain Atom #1 Active in adventuring
Judomaster (Ripley Jagger) Special War #4 L.A.W. #1* Killed by Bane, Infinite Crisis #7; his son, Tommy Jagger, serves in Checkmate
Nightshade (Eve Eden) Captain Atom #82 Suicide Squad #1 Active in adventuring
Peacemaker II (Mitchell Black) n/a Justice League Int'l v.2 #65 Killed in Infinite Crisis #7
The Question (Vic Sage) Blue Beetle #1 Blue Beetle #5 Died of cancer, 52 #38
Sarge Steel (Sergeant Steel) Sarge Steel #1 Legends #3 Active in adventuring
Other Charlton-related heroes
Avatar / Tiger ("Tiger" Tanaka) Judomaster #91 L.A.W. #1 Active as a villain
Blue Beetle (Dan Garrett) Blue Beetle #1 Secret Origins #2 Deceased when Secret Origins #2
Judomaster II (unknown) n/a Justice League Quarterly #14 Unknown
Judomaster III (Sonia Sato) n/a Birds of Prey #100 Active in adventuring
Peacemaker (Christopher Smith) Fightin' Five #40 Vigilante #36 Deceased Eclipso #13 (11.93)
Peter Cannon, Thunderbolt (none) Thunderbolt #1 Peter Cannon #1 Active in adventuring (character not owned by DC)

League of Ancients

Gamemnae's pawns, the League of Ancients: clockwise from top left: Anointed One, Tezumak, Sela, Manitou Raven, the Whaler, Rama Khan and Gamemnae. From JLA #72 (2002); art by Doug Mahnke.

In 1043 BCE, after Atlantis had long been under the sea, a the blond-haired girl named Gamemnae was expelled from the city because of superstition. The girl was raised amidst sorcery and in the year 1020 BCE, Gamemnae returned to Atlantis to raise the city above the waters. She became their queen, and in order to ensure her reign, she gained godlike powers by magically binding her soul to the continent. This bond could not be broken unless the continent itself was destroyed. (JLA #75)

Gamemnae eventually met the statesman, Rama Khan, who had traveled from Jarhanpur to Atlantis seeking allies. He was instantly ensnared by Gamemnae, and the pair led the nation to greatness, Atlantis' Obsidian Age. But the appearance of Khan "ruling" by her side was merely Gamemnae's magicks at work. (#70)

In 1015 BCE, their empire was invaded—by itself! As part of a magical contingency plan, all of 21st century Atlantis was shunted 3,000 years into the past. (JLA: Our Worlds at War) This plan was enacted by its modern day ruler, Aquaman. When these Atlanteans arrived in the past, they did not expect to find the city above water, and many citizens suffocated in the air. Aquaman led the survivors to the water, and Gamemnae trapped him in a magical pool. Beneath the waves, the remainder of Aquaman's people (including his wife, Mera) were enslaved. (JLA #72)

Gamemnae realized the threat posed by Aquaman's allies, should they come for him. So in 1004 BCE, the witch crafted a dire "prophesy" (voiced through Rama Khan) which claimed that Atlantis would be threatened by seven destroyers. In order to arm themselves, she and Rama Khan recruited heroes from across the globe (even rival societies) to form a multicultural League of Ancients:

  • The Annointed One, a powerhouse Hebrew creature who rivaled Superman and could emit sonic waves from his mouth.
  • Manitou Raven, a North American magician. His people were the ancestors of modern day Apache people.
  • Sela, the insatiable African warrior woman. She worshipped a trio of gods.
  • Tezumak, the armored warrior of a brutal society (perhaps Olmec). The power from his gods required child sacrifice.
  • The Whaler, who weilded a mystical green energy. (JLA #70, JLA/JSA Secret Files)

Of course the League knew nothing of Aquaman or his special imprisonment, nor that these supposed "destroyers" were likely to be Aquaman's allies from the future. Manitou Raven and Tezumak were chosen to travel to the 21st century for a preemptive attack to destroy the JLA. (JLA #66) They failed, and instead led the JLA back to ancient Atlantis in search of Aquaman. (JLA #68) The JLA quickly discovered Aquaman's essence trapped in the pool (#70) and located Mera and the remainder of her people. (#72)

Gamemnae's power proved too much on her native soil, and the Ancients succeeded in slaying the entire JLA. This battle turned the tides in Atlantis, though. Manitou Raven had his doubts all along about Gamemnae. In the end, he sided with Green Lantern end her tyranny and save the lives of the JLA. Raven used Kyle Rayner's heart as a sacrifice to power a spell that preserved the JLA's souls. It also cast a containment spell around Atlantis, effectively trapping Gamemnae inside. (#74)

Three millennia later, the JLA's successors found Raven, traveled back to ancient Atlantis and broke the spell; the JLA, Aquaman, and Gamemnae were all released. Aquaman then made the fateful decision to re-sink Atlantis. This process cut Gamemnae off from her power for good. (#75)

Though the Ancients themselves were not without battle scars, some may have survived. Both Rama Khan and the Whaler were literally absorbed by Gamemnae herself. (#74-75) She intended to do the same to the other League members; the Anointed One was seen battling her just before she was imprisoned by Manitou Raven. Ancient Atlantis fell once again beneath the waves, so if they survived, they likely returned home.

Raven and his wife, Dawn, elected to accompany the JLA back to the 21st century. (#75) Raven went on to join the JLA but soon perished in battle. (Justice League Elite #8) Dawn has since taken up the "Manitou" mantle and joined the JLA for a brief time as well. (#10)

Tezumak's fate tied him to Atlantis once again centuries later. Some time after his death, his armored hand was used to protect a powerful talisman. (Metal Men v.3 #1)

Rama Khan (which is a title rather than a name) was succeeded in his country, Jarhanpur, down to the modern day. His descendant fought the JLA as well. (JLA #62-64)


The Whaler's power seemed very much like that of the Green Lantern. However, the mystical Starheart which eventually powered Alan Scott did not fall to Earth until the first century BCE.

» FIRST APPEARANCE: JLA#70 (Late December 2002)

» SEE ALSO: Justice League EliteMetal Men

League of Assassins

Created by Neal Adams

An international criminal organization employing some of the world's most formidable killers, including masters of ancient, modern, and super-scientific weaponry and martial arts. It was a member of the League of Assassins, the Hook, who killed aerialist Boston Brand, leading to Brand's spirit becoming the ghostly hero Deadman(Strange Adventures #205, Secret Origins v.2 #15)

The origins and history of the League of Assassins have never been revealed, but the League has long been affiliated with, though not always loyal to, Ra's al Ghul. The Sensei, one of the League's most senior members, once described himself as "the powerful fang which protects his [Ra's al Ghul's] head." (Justice League of America v.1 #94) The organization originally had at least two distinct factions: the League of Assassins, led by Dr. Darrk, which carried out contract assassinations for third-party clients (Detective Comics #405–406, 411), and the Society of Assassins, an inner circle led by and chiefly loyal to the Sensei, consisting of elite assassins like Willie Smith, Lotus, M'Naku, and the archer Merlyn(Strange Adventures #215–216, Brave and the Bold #86, Justice League of America #94) Both were apparently separate from the Brotherhood of the Demon, the personal forces of Ra's al Ghul himself. (Batman v.1 #232) 

Although the League demands absolute obedience from its rank and file, sometimes punishing failure with death, the organization's leaders have frequently been at odds. Dr. Darrk attempted to wrest overall control of the League from Ra's by kidnapping his daughter Talia for leverage, but Talia killed Darrk instead. (Detective Comics #411) Ra's and the Sensei subsequently engaged in a protracted power struggle, which led to the Sensei's brainwashing of the martial artist Bronze Tiger; the murder (or apparent murder) of Kathy Kane, the original Batwoman (Detective #485); and the apparent deaths of both Ra's and the Sensei. (Detective #490) Both men later returned and eventually resumed their struggle for power. Their last recorded clash prior to Flashpoint (Batman #671) again saw the Sensei seemingly destroyed, leaving Ra's and Talia once more in control of the League of Assassins. (Detective #839)

In the post-Crisis universe, the Sensei was possessed for a number of years by Jonah, a century-old spirit who had been a servant of Rama Kushna, the demigod who empowered the spirit of Boston Brand. Under Jonah's control, the Sensei poured the League's resources into the development of advanced weapons capable of imprisoning or destroying spiritual entities like Deadman or Rama. The forces of the League of Assassins then invaded and laid waste to Nanda Parbat, the hidden Tibetan city that was the center of Rama's power, where Jonah and Rama Kushna apparently destroyed one another. The Sensei, no less evil outside of Jonah's domination, then withdrew his men and returned to his business and his war with Ra's al Ghul. (Deadman v.2 #1–4) Those events, which took place days after Brave and the Bold #86, cannot be easily reconciled with Deadman's subsequent pre-Crisis appearances and probably did not have any direct parallel on Earth-One.

In the reordered timeline following Infinite Crisis, neither Nanda Parbat nor Rama Kushna was destroyed (both featured prominently in 52). The Sensei of that timeline did not know the location of Nanda Parbat (later sending his inner circle, the Seven Men of Death, on a quest to find it) and had no evident interest in it other than preventing Ra's al Ghul from using the hidden city for his latest resurrection. (Batman #670–671) It's unclear if Jonah existed in that timeline or, if he did, what connection he may have had with the Sensei or the League of Assassins.

Major Assassins include:

  • Hook (no other name known): The man who killed Boston Brand (Deadman). Later killed by the Sensei when Brand's twin brother Cleveland posed as Boston.

  • The Bronze Tiger: Ben Turner was kidnapped and brainwashed by the Sensei to become the Bronze Tiger (he was later deprogrammed by Amanda Waller (as revealed in Suicide Squad #38, 2.90).

  • Meryln, an archer who quit after his failure rather than face death. (Justice League of America #94)

  • Shrike, who a ran a "Vengeance Academy" that training young men to be ninjas and potential league members. (Robin: Year One #3) Was killed by Two-Face (#4)
  • David Cain, father of Cassandra Cain (Batgirl III), by Lady Shiva herself. Cassandra has gone on to lead the League.

» FIRST APPEARANCE:  Strange Adventures #215 (Nov./Dec. 1968)


» SEE: The L.E.G.I.O.N.'s history and membership is covered in great detail in the L.E.G.I.O.N. section of the Legion module.


70 issues (1989-94)
17 issues (1994-96)
R.E.B.E.L.S. v.2, 28 issues (2009-11)

The Legion of Doom

On Television

From Family Guy. © 2007 Twentieth Century Fox Film Corporation
Brainwave's Legion of Doom. Fighting Amazing Man, from the top: Killer Frost, Major Force, Gorilla Grodd, Brainwave, Houngan, Madmen. From Extreme Justice #18 (1996); art by Tom Morgan and Ken Branch.

The Legion of Doom appeared in all 16 episodes of the Challenge of the Super Friends cartoon (season three of Super Friends), beginning on 9 September 1978. For contemporary comics fans, the villains' roster included many recognizable arch foes, and two more obscure characters for that time. One was Giganta, the Golden Age enemy of Wonder Woman, who hadn't appeared since 1948. The other was the greatly restyled, second Toyman. This Toyman did actually appear in comics, but briefly. The roster was:

  • Bizarro
  • Black Manta
  • Braniac
  • Captain Cold
  • Cheetah
  • Giganta
  • Grodd
  • Lex Luthor
  • Riddler
  • Scarecrow
  • Sinestro
  • Solomon Grundy
  • Toyman

There were several more episodes which were unaired in the United States. They were released in 2009 on the DVD collection Super Friends: The Lost Episodes.

The Super Friends' successor on TV, the Justice League animated series also featured a group of villains led by Luthor, but they were called the Injustice League, not the Legion of Doom.

The Legion of Doom also makes a 15-second cameo on the animated show “Family Guy.” The episode aired 13 May 2007 and was titled “It Takes a Village Idiot, and I Married One.” Here are some screen shots:

In Comics

The above-mentioned team never appeared in the Super Friends comic, though some of the villains did individually.

In mainstream comics, a Legion of Doom were assembled by Christopher Priest at the end of the Extreme Justice series. (He had also brought the Wonder Twins, Zan and Jayna, into that series.) Brainwave II led the group and recruited Killer Frost first. (Extreme Justice #14) They were based in the Florida swamps. Soon they added an android duplicate of Gorilla Grodd and Houngan. (#16) To round it out, they stole the corpse of Major Force (Houngan was able to "reforge" his soul to his body) and added two of the Madmen. (#17) Brainwave was ultimately stopped by Maxima's mental abilities. He had been overtaken by guilt of his father's evil. The other members were captured. (#18) No group has reformed with this name since.

Also, Alex Ross adapted the design of the cartoon Legion of Doom headquarters for the Gulag prison in Kingdom Come.

From Justice, art by Alex Ross.

oss also modeled his villains after the Legion of Doom in the 12-issue limited series Justice (2005).

» FIRST APPEARANCE: Extreme Justice #14

» FEATURED APPEARANCES: Extreme Justice #16-18

» SEE ALSO: Super Friends Home Page

Member 1st app. Info/Status
Brainwave II (Henry "Hank" King, Jr.) All-Star Squadron #25 Active in villainy
Gorilla Grodd (an android) Extreme Justice #16 Destroyed Extreme Justice #18
Houngan (Jean-Louis Droo) New Teen Titans #14 Active in villainy
Killer Frost II (Louise Lincoln) Fury of Firestorm #20 (Killer Frost in #34) Active in villainy
Major Force (Clifford Zmeck) Captain Atom Annual #1 Active in villainy
The Madmen (Fleeter and unrevealed) Blue Beetle #3 Active in villainy

The Legion of Super-Heroes

The Legion is covered in great detail in the Legion section of this site.

The Legion of Super-Villains

Legion of Super-Rejects + League of Super-Assassins

» SEE: Stand-Alone Profile

Linear Men

» SEE ALSO:  The Linear Men are covered thoroughly at The Unofficial Linear Men Web Site.

This site's author, Adam Arnold, responded as follows when I asked about the continuity of Rip Hunter after the Crisis:

Dan Jurgens did completely re-invent Rip Hunter after Crisis when he was introduced as a key figure to help Booster Gold. Rip Hunter later got his own mini-series called Time Masters where there were several guest appearances by Tomahawk, Dan Hunter (Rip Hunter's cousin), Booster Gold, Animal Man, Swamp Thing, and many others. Did others stick with it? Yes, Dan Jurgens later picked up Rip Hunter again and put him in the Linear Men. But, after Zero Hour he got totally screwed up when Dan wrote a story about Rip Hunter and how he joined the Linear Men. It was totally out of character and made Rip Hunter into his pre-Crisis counterpart, which seems to be the one who exists now because of past appearances of him in the Forgotten Heroes segments of Resurrection Man.

See his site for annotations.

» FIRST APPEARANCE: Armageddon 2001 #1