Thursday, February 16, 2012

Star-Spangled Kid

Star-Spangled Kid is the name of several fictional superheroes in the DC Comics' main shared universe.

Sylvester Pemberton, alternately known as The Star-Spangled Kid and Skyman, is a fictional superhero in the DC Comics universe. Sylvester first appeared in Action Comics #40 (September 1941) and was created by Jerry Siegel and Hal Sherman. The original Star-Spangled Kid was Sylvester Pemberton, a Golden Age character. He became the Star-Spangled Kid in order to battle Nazism during World War II. He was unique in that he was a kid superhero who had an adult sidekick, Stripesy a.k.a. Pat Dugan. Both he and Dugan were superb acrobats along with having sufficient training in hand-to-hand combat, but the pair regularly bickered about which of them should get top billing.

Decades later, he changed his name to Skyman and led Infinity Inc.. He was killed when Harlequin III made Solomon Grundy touch Pemberton with Mister Bones's hand. Bones' cyanide touch killed him instantly.

Courtney Whitmore is a superheroine known as Stargirl (often called "Stars" or "Star") in the DC Comics Universe. Originally known as the second Star-Spangled Kid, she began using the name "Stargirl" after she was presented with the Cosmic Staff by Jack Knight. The character is a creation of Geoff Johns, who based her personality on that of his sister, also named Courtney, who died in the explosion of TWA Flight 800 in 1996. Johns is an avid fan of Captain Carrot and the Zoo Crew and Courtney's original outfit is similar to Zoo Crew member Yankee Poodle's; in the comics, this is explained by Courtney being a fan of Yankee Poodle. Courtney is the stepdaughter of Pat Dugan. She finds Pemberton's gear in her stepfather's belongings and dons the Cosmic Converter Belt, with a costume of her own design. She begins her career as the second Star-Spangled Kid in order to annoy Dugan as partial revenge for him marrying her mother and supposedly forcing the family to move from Los Angeles to Blue Valley, Nebraska. Dugan, a skilled mechanic, designs and builds S.T.R.I.P.E., an armored robot which he rides in to accompany and protect her. Eventually, she joins the JSA and, after being given Starman Jack Knight's cosmic rod, changes her identity to Stargirl.

Miss Martian (real name M'gann M'orzz, alias Megan Morse) is a superhero in the DC Comics Universe. Miss Martian was created by Geoff Johns and Tony Daniel and first appeared in Teen Titans #37 (2006). Miss Martian is named "Megan Morse" after Marvel Comics associate editor Ben Morse's wife, Megan. Morse is a friend of Johns. A third Star-Spangled Kid appears in Terror Titans #1 and is subsequently captured by the Terror Titans team for the Dark Side Club. The Star-Spangled Kid is forced to fight in a tournament against other meta-humans, going on to win the tournament. During the course of the storyline he appears to have a much stronger resistance to brainwashing than the other fighters, although he does eventually succumb. Later, it is revealed that he is the shape-shifting Miss Martian. She uses her immunity to the brainwashing to slowly free the other combatants.

In Kingdom Come, Alex Ross portrays a later Star-Spangled Kid (simply called Stars) as an African-American street kid wearing a leather jacket with an American flag bandana,and a T-shirt with an inverted American flag, using the cosmic rod in conjunction with the cosmic converter belt. He, too, is accompanied by a muscular older man in a striped shirt, this one called Stripes.

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