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Kingdom Universe Titans

Red Robin, The Flash, Red Arrow, Wonder Girl and Aquaman
Nightstar, Kid Flash, Darkstar, Red Hood and Aquagirl

Related Links: Dark Angel

 

Teen Titans File Photos:

ABOVE: The Kingdom Universe Titans [from left to right]:
The Flash, Red Arrow and Wonder Girl, Red Robin,
Titans Children: Kid Flash, Darkstar, Red Hood and Nightstar
BELOW: The Kingdom Titans in TITANS #25 [2001].

Roll Call


Red Robin [Dick Grayson]

Formerly Nightwing, Dick Grayson, the original Robin, is following in his mentor’s footsteps again.

The death of his wife, Starfire, sent Nightwing into retirement. But as superhuman anarchy reaches critical mass, Superman coaxes Dick Grayson back into action. At his new leader’s behest, Grayson even reclaims his boyhood identity of Robin, melding it with aspects of his former mentor, Batman.

Donna Troy [Wonder Girl]

Formerly Wonder Girl, Troia and Darkstar, now an Amazonian champion.

It would have seemed appropriate to have the former Wonder Girl eventually take up the mantle of Wonder Woman, but the original never left that role. Instead of playing with that concept, I used an older Wonder Girl to illustrate how much her mentor hadn’t aged. Her grey-streaked hair and increased weight indicate a physical maturity unlike her immortal Amazon sister. Wearing a costume closer to her older Titan roots, she has left her Darkstar mantle to the son she had with her former husband Terry Long – the first of many failed Titan relationships.

Flash III [Wally West]

Emanating from the Speed Force, Wally West fights crime 24 hours every day at super-speed.

Flash’s evolution has the character become more godlike in power (a la his inspiration “Mercury”). All of the Flash’s classic abilities were in use constantly, and we saw him as a vibrating motion blur, glowing red with heat friction with small bolts of electricity licking around him. He is always in several places at once, stepping between planes of reality, thinking several steps ahead of normal human capacity (one nice unused idea was that Superman would be the only one who could hear him speak).

Before this evolution, Wally West sired a super-speedster daughter who acts in our story as the very young “new” Flash, but apparently has no direct connection to the evolved, Mercury-like Flash. An explanation for this could be that his personality may have grown from the singular mind of Wally West to synthesize all three Flashes into a composite.


Aquaman II [Garth]

Formerly Aqualad, now inheritor of his mentor’s mantle.

As one of the original Teen Titans, the former Aqualad holds an important place, being a high-strength-level character (from his ability to survive the ocean depths) and his role as the current Aquaman in our almost-complete rebuilding of the classic JLA.

His look is influenced by a story where he retraced his roots to a lost race of purple-eyed Atlanteans like himself. The principal character from that tale was bearded as he is here. Aquaman II has an estranged daughter Tula, after his late girlfriend, whom he may have had little or no part in raising, something he has in common with some of his fellow Titans.

Red Arrow [Roy Harper]

Formerly Speedy, and later Arsenal, now following more closely the methods of his mentor, Green Arrow.

The fifth member of the original Titans, Speedy returns in a role closer to that of Green Arrow. Speedy, later Arsenal, may have grown more comfortable with his roots by taking on his mentor’s old Neal Adams-designed costume. Longtime Titans fans should remember that Speedy and Wonder Girl shared an innocent relationship as youthful Teen Titans and that now he, like she, is a single parent. His daughter is the product of a youthful coupling with the villainess Cheshire. This girl followed the archer’s lineage as Red Hood…

Nightstar [Mar’i Grayson]

Nightstar is the daughter of Dick Grayson (Nightwing, Red Robin) and Starfire.

Definitely her mother’s daughter, the flying starbolt-firing vixen with the rich, flowing hair and green eyes seems to show more of the superhuman/alien side of her parentage. The half-human, half-Tamaranean child of longtime Titans couple (separated in current storylines) Starfire and Nightwing (Red Robin) is the focal example in Kingdom Come of the generational divide between the classic super-heroes and their children. Nightstar’s estrangement from her father and her mother’s absence in the series could be explained through Starfire’s death, and that that loss somehow led to a rift. That she is a clear visual reminder of her mother (with the exception of her dark, straight hair from dad’s genes) may have been too haunting to Dick Grayson, and therefore he either distanced himself or he may have become overprotective and constrictive of her, fearing for her life.

Throwing in with Batman puts her close to the figurative grandfather she probably never got to know due to the split between him and her father. She may be instrumental in linking up the other original Titans’ offspring. Visually, she combines her parents’ individual costumed identities with the wing motif of Nightwing and the more violet hue of her starbolt power (Starfire’s was red).

Darkstar [Robert Troy Long]

The son of Donna Troy (formerly Wonder Girl and later Darkstar) and Terry Long.

The child of Donna Troy and ex-husband Terry Long (human guy) has died in current continuity and been an adult in another, possible future timeline. There, he was imbued with the power of all the Titan gods of Greek myth at birth and became the evil Lord Chaos, despotic ruler of the future Earth. Responsible for the creation of the time-displaced Team Titans, Lord Chaos’s existence was ultimately averted in a story of time travel and alternative futures.

Considering that in current continuity his mother, formerly known as both Wonder Girl and Troia, was this planet’s Darkstar (an intergalactic police force), it seemed perfectly logical that he might assume that role one day. This frees Donna Troy to return to her Amazonian origins and provides a new, heroic future for her once darkly-destined son. To include a touch of his mom’s mythological Greek connection, I adapted his Darkstar chest emblem to resemble the Caduceus, the staff carried by the god Hermes (also used as the symbol for medicine), whom he resembles.

Kid Flash [Iris West]

Kid Flash is the daughter of Wally West (the Kingdom Come Flash III), and Angela Margolin.

The young girl in the Kid Flash-derived outfit is the daughter of the adult Kid Flash, Wally West (now simply The Flash). I justify two people running around with the same superhero name by saying that it’s simply part of longtime DC history to have lots of guys share a mantle (though the excuse of having alternate versions of Earth is now gone). She would have gained this super-speedster lineage by blood, but her more natural humanity contrasts with her father’s evolved, near-godlike state. Also, if Flash truly is a composite of more than Wally West’s sentience, he would be further hampered in relating to his offspring. Certain costume details in her lightning-striped pants and booties reflect the design of the original Flash, Jay Garrick.

Aquagirl [Tula]

Seafaring malcontent and daughter of Aquaman II.

The most estranged Titan child is the mysterious daughter of Aquaman II, for whom the mother is unknown. As her features are vaguely Asian, we are uncertain who these genes could have come from. Tony Akins designed the seashell-like armor and weapons brandished by this most aggressive, malcontented Titan offspring. Her being named Tula after Aquagirl, her father’s late girlfriend, indicates that he must have had a presence in her life, even if not for long.

Red Hood [Lian Harper]

Not named after the Joker’s original alter ego, but more after Little Red Riding Hood, this Titan child is the daughter of Red Arrow (originally Speedy) and the villainess Cheshire. Since she has been raised under his care, she has more in common with her father and has taken up his crime-fighting craft of archery. Her costume is loosely based on one of the earliest Golden Age heroes (and the first archer), The Arrow.

 

History


Kingdom Come

The minister had dreamt terrible dreams. They were dreams of war, lit by unholy fire and filled with the screams of the rapidly dying-and of those who would not die soon enough. Morning brought the certainty that these were no simple night-terrors, but visions of a time about to be-a dreaded new kingdom soon to come.

Like the rest of the world, America had long suffered at the hands of a population of uncontrollable meta-humans. The country either lived in fear of these super-humans–or blindly worshipped them.

AMERICOMMANDO’S acts of brutal terrorism, committed in the name of national pride, were horrifying enough. The fact that he ran freely was worse. In the face of the new world disorder, many old-line heroes had retired in disgust. But not everyone had walked away. The streets of GOTHAM CITY became safer than ever, thanks to an old oath – to strike fear in the hearts of superstitious criminals everywhere-and a new, tremendously sophisticated robotics technology in the form of the BAT-KNIGHTS.

The new super-humans stood for little, and believed in less. Yet it took only one man – the grandstanding MAGOG- to drive SUPERMAN into retirement. Wielding his power staff with brutal force, this herald of a dark tomorrow led bands of super-humans in righteous rampages-only to succumb to the ghosts of a million humans killed during one fateful hunt. For ten years, SUPERMAN had turned his back on a world that had only grown worse in his absence. After a Kansas disaster, he realized this self-imposed exile must end if his adopted planet was to survive. Joined by old allies -WONDER WOMAN, FLASH, HAWKMAN, GREEN LANTERN, RAY and POWER WOMAN-Superman led the JUSTICE LEAGUE into battle once again. Joining Superman’s new Justice League were the five original Titans: Red Robin [Dick Grayson], Donna Troy, Red Arrow [Roy Harper], the Flash [Wally West] and Aquaman II [Garth]. Commanding the nation’s attention, SUPERMAN announced the return of Earth’s true heroes.

ABOVE: Original Titans Aquaman II, Wonder Girl, Red Arrow, Red Robin and Flash.
BELOW: Titans Children: Aquagirl, Darkstar, Red Hood, Nightstar and Kid Flash II

VON BACH was among the most powerful and vicious of the new breed of super-human – but even the Human Blitzkrieg could not withstand the combined might of SUPERMAN and WONDER WOMAN. He learned the hard way that in the name of peace and justice, the MAN OF STEEL insisted on absolute cooperation… or total capitulation. The resurrected JUSTICE LEAGUE expanded its numbers and reached further, seeking to rescue the world from its own out-of-control heroes. But beyond America’s borders, the problem was worse. Fewer battles were won by persuasion, and far more by force. Success was nowhere in sight… and that fact haunted SUPERMAN’S every step.

They called themselves the MANKIND LIBERATION FRONT, but LEX LUTHOR’S group of masterminds was anything but the benevolent organization they pretended to be. For years, Luthor had been secretly stocking the meta-human population with malcontent heroes and hyper-weaponry. On a daily basis, acts of random chaos erupted, leading steadily towards a super-powered confrontation. Pretending to be sympathetic to their cause, BATMAN joined forces with LEX LUTHOR’S MANKIND LIBERATION FRONT. That Luthor was up to something was a fact he never doubted, but where did CAPTAIN MARVEL fit into the master schemer’s Plan? Backed by the sons and daughters of Earth’s greatest heroes-and a few old allies –Batman would find the answers. Included in Batman’ allies were the Titans’ children: Nightstar [Mar’I Grayson], Kid Flash [Iris West], Red Hood [Lian Harper], Darkstar [Robert Troy Long], and Aquagirl [Tula].

The original Titans.

LEX LUTHOR’S obvious authority over the mighty CAPTAIN MARVEL cowed and intimidated any who would challenge the mastermind. Only BATMAN could see beyond Marvel’s daunting stature to the frightened child he really was-BILLY BATSON. Luthor was obviously keeping the POWER OF SHAZAM in reserve for some dark purpose… but what? Using skill and cunning undimmed by age, BATMAN had turned the tables on LEX LUTHOR and sent the mastermind’s plans into disarray. The DARK KNIGHT knew that he had precious little time to bring CAPTAIN MARVEL back to the side of the angels. Clearly, Luthor planned to use the POWER OF SHAZAM to precipitate the Apocalypse…

There are two laws of nature that villains like LEX LUTHOR always forget… If you’ve made an enemy of BATMAN, you can run… but you cannot hide. And if you seek to profit from the suffering of others, you will pay for your sins. With his unstoppable BAT-KNIGHTS at his command, Batman strictly enforced these laws.

The time for talking was at an end. If war was the only way for Earth’s heroes to reclaim their planet from the hard-boiled super-humans, then there could be no turning back. When a brutal jailbreak was staged at the meta-human gulag, WONDER WOMAN was prepared to demand surrender of the rioters. Unlike SUPERMAN, she would not hesitate to shed blood. A gulag built to control the uncontrollable-rogue meta-humans -had failed spectacularly. Thousands within its walls now rejected SUPERMAN’S authority-and with a single declaration of war, the JUSTICE LEAGUE had done the same. Alone between heaven and earth, and furious with himself for losing control, the MAN OF STEEL raced to play his trump card…

As a battle between meta-humans raged out of control, SUPERMAN confronted an ally who had remained infuriatingly neutral in the cataclysmic conflict. Superman insisted that BATMAN could no longer stay aloof-that his help was desperately needed. Could Batman turn his back on an old friend- or on the Earth? BATMAN and WONDER WOMAN fought together in the battle against the rogue super-humans, but their causes were vastly opposed. Batman fought to save lives before things went too far-while Wonder Woman was prepared to force peace at any cost. And she made it clear that even Batman would fall if he stood in her way.

Though it began as a clash between whole generations of meta-humans, it had become a battle to the death between only two of them -CAPTAIN MARVEL and SUPERMAN. They were nearly matched in might, but the magic power given to Marvel by the wizard SHAZAM gave him the slightest edge -as did the fact that under LUTHOR’S thrall, he was no longer guided by human compassion. Blasting CAPTAIN MARVEL with his heat vision gained SUPERMAN only brief respite in their brutal battle.

Titans: Next Generation

Superman knew that the two could be locked in this struggle for hours-precious time the Earth could not afford to waste. For Superman, victory lay not in defeating his deluded friend, but in somehow rekindling that forgotten humanity.

Again and again, CAPTAIN MARVEL called down the lightning that gave him his magical might. Once a force for good, it now became a deadly weapon against SUPERMAN. With one desperate lunge the MAN OF STEEL muzzled Marvel, leaving the Captain trapped in human form –and to re-summon the POWER OF SHAZAM.

SUPERMAN had tried desperately to reach CAPTAIN MARVEL’S buried heroic nature-before the super-megaton bomb struck. As Superman streaked toward the bomb, praying that he would not have to face it alone, the sound of seven thunders resonated. Marvel had made his choice with one word: “SHAZAM.” Using all the might of SHAZAM, CAPTAIN MARVEL had finally overcome the brainwashing that compelled him to deny his heroic calling. He was both god and man -and only he had the right to choose to halt the bomb that would annihilate thousands. But had he made his choice in sufficient time to succeed? And could even Earth’s MIGHTIEST MORTAL survive a thermonuclear explosion?

In the smoldering aftermath, the Earth was safe-but countless super-humans were dead. CAPTAIN MARVEL’S decision became a legacy. SUPERMAN finally understood that to save mankind, meta-humans had to embrace their own humanity and live alongside the very men and women they once intimidated. Then -and only then – could life spring from the ashes.

Kingdom Come

The Kingdom

Following the near destruction of earth, the remaining heroes resumed their lives. Nightstar mended fences with her father, Dick Grayson. Nightstar had taken up residence in New Oa, and helped defend the earth against invading forces. She also spent time in her treehouse fortress, which allowed her access points to different parts in space, including Tamaran.

Kid Flash II [Iris West], meanwhile, still sought approval from her father. Wally West had been so busy defending his city, that he often neglected his daughter. Iris’ brother (Barry West II) never showed much interest in the Flash legacy, but Iris more than made up for his apathy.

Sometime later, a madman named Gog emerged. Gog at one time worshipped Superman, but came to hate him. He deluded himself into thinking Superman was the devil incarnate. In an attempt to rid Superman, God traveled through time and killed him in various timelines. Gog later emerged in the Kingdom timeline and captured Wonder Woman and Superman’s son, Jonathan. To save the child, Superman, Batman and Wonder Woman traveled back in time in pursuit of Gog.

Meanwhile, others became aware of the super-heroic trio’s mission; They believed that by altering Gog’s plan, it would create a time paradox that would erase the Kingdom Come future! To preserve the world as they knew it, Nightstar, Kid Flash II, Offspring, Ibn Xu’Ffasch and Rip Hunter traveled to the past to prevent the success of their mission. Once in the past, the Kingdom heroes and the modern day heroes were able to defeat Gog. Strangely, the Kingdom future was unaffected. Rip Hunter then explained why: there were alternate timelines, not one true, single timeline [this is the concept known as Hypertime]. The Kingdom heroes then traveled back to their proper time and place.

Chain Lightning

Later, Wally West [Flash] came into conflict with Cobalt Blue, who was revealed to be Barry Allen’s twin brother. Cobalt Blue felt Barry had the life he should have had. He found a way to acquire super powers through black magic and sought to erase the Flash legacy. This meant killing various people who would carry on the Flash legacy through the 30th century! Super-speedsters past and present [including Iris West, Kid Flash II] joined forces and eventually defeated Cobalt Blue.

The Kingdom Titans try to save Donna Troy in TITANS #25 [2001].

Who Is Troia?

Sometime later, the evil spirit Dark Angel returned, vowing to destroy every incarnation of Donna Troy in every timeline! In The Kingdom Universe, Zeus gathered together the Titans’ children [Nightstar, Aquagirl, Darkstar, Red Hood and Kid Flash] and sent them into an alternate timeline past to prevent Dark Angel’s plan.

Dark Angel, however, was able to erase Troia from the memories of all who knew her. The Kingdom Titans intervened, first clashed and later teamed up with their alternate-reality parents. They were, however, forbidden to reveal their true identities and created a cover story as government agents. Eventually, with the help of the Kingdom Titans, the Titans were able to prevent Dark Angel’s mad scheme and trap her in Nightstar’s treehouse fortress.

As the Kingdom Titans left, Nightwing began to deduce their true identities; But soon after they disappeared, their memories of these future heroes became clouded and vague.

 

Essential Reading


Kingdom Come #1-4 [1996]: introduces a possible future in which a new generation of violent meta-humans is out of control. Some are villains, others fight crime. But even the most heroic of these new meta-humans lack the morals and restraint of their predecessors. In fact, Superman and many of his contemporaries long ago retired when it seemed the world preferred these new, ruthless super-heroes. But leaving the world’s protection to the new “heroes” proves to be a grave mistake. When Magog and Captain Atom corner the Parasite in Kansas, the terrified villain rips open Captain Atom, unleashing a nuclear explosion that obliterates the American heartland. In the aftermath of Kansas, Superman returns from seclusion to bring order to a meta-human community run amok. After a harsh struggle that costs many of the world’s meta-humans their lives, peace is finally restored. Superman remains active while eagerly awaiting the birth of a baby with his new love, Wonder Woman. First appearance of the Kingdom Titans [Red Robin, Donna Troy (Wonder Girl), Red Arrow, Aquaman II & Flash] and their children [Nightstar, Darkstar (Robert Long), Red Hood, Aquagirl & Kid Flash].

The Kingdom #1-2 [1998]: reveals how Gog is traveling backward through time, stopping each day to kill Superman in new and horribly inventive ways. But with each earlier murder of the Man of Steel, Gog creates a new time paradox, further weakening the fabric of reality. Hunter, of the “Linear Men” who guard the timeline, sets out to help stop this rampage… and protect a mysterious secret about the nature of space-time itself. Arriving on the day that Wonder Woman gives birth to her and Superman’s son, Hunter is unable to help the heroes of Earth stop Gog. The crazed, time-traveling villain takes the super-child and proceeds directly to 1998 Kansas to complete his mission of destruction. The only course of action left is for Superman, Batman and Wonder Woman to accompany Hunter back to 1998 and battle Gog there. But even if they succeed, their journey will alter the time stream so much that their own future, the world of KINGDOM COME, will be erased from reality! And so, as the three greatest heroes the world has ever known depart on their final mission, the people of the future wait for their lives, their entire reality, to be erased. But four young heroes – Nightstar, Offspring, Kid Flash and Ibn al Xu’ffasch join forces to somehow fight the inevitable doom that awaits them. Once in the past, the Kingdom heroes and the modern day heroes are able to defeat Gog. Strangely, the Kingdom future is unaffected. Rip Hunter then explains why: there are alternate timelines, not one true, single timeline [this is the concept known as Hypertime]. The Kingdom heroes then travel back to their proper time and place. Part of a series on ‘Kingdom’ one shots: Nightstar, Kid Flash, Offspring, Son of the Bat and Planet Krypton.

The Kingdom: Nightstar #1 [1998]: High above Earth, aboard Green Lantern’s space station, the daughter of Nightwing and Starfire fights for life, even though everyone and everything is doomed! Following the near destruction of earth, the remaining heroes resume their lives. Nightstar mends fences with her father, Dick Grayson. Nightstar takes up residence in New Oa, and helps defend the earth against invading forces. She also spends time in her treehouse fortress, which allows her access points to different parts in space, including Tamaran.

The Kingdom: Kid Flash #1 [1998]: The daughter of the Flash is beloved around the globe as Kid Flash. But can she win the same acceptance from her own father and brother before it’s too late? Kid Flash II [Iris West] seeks approval from her father. Wally West has been so busy defending his city, that he often neglected his daughter. Iris’ brother (Barry West II) never showed much interest in the Flash legacy, but Iris more than makes up for his apathy.

Titans #23-25 [2000-2001]: The “Who’s Troia?” trilogy. The evil Dark Angel is erasing Donna from existence throughout Hypertime. But how can Donna save herself, when none of her teammates recognize her? It’s up to Nightstar, Kid Flash, the Red Hood and the rest of the sons and daughters of the Titans save Troia from being erased from existence forever. The Titans are joined by the Titanic team from The Kingdom — traveling through different points in Donna’s history before the evil Dark Angel can erase them. The Titans are ultimately successful, as Dark Angel is defeated and Troia is restored at last!

 


Sources for this entry: Kingdom Come Card Series, Kingdom Come Hardcover, supplemented by titanstower.com


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