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Brief 411 On Character Backstories

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The term “character” means qualities that make something or someone different from others. Special characteristics are exactly what makes entertainment characters so adored.

This Brief 411 On Character Backstories page was created to give a short character bio and outline the special qualities of those film, television, cartoon, and comic book characters that are featured on our Entertainment Collectibles.

Batgirl

Batgirl is Batman’s peer and ally. Her alter ego is a superheroine who also dresses like a bat and fights crime. Her powers are her intelligence, her top physical condition (which gives her great speed, flexibility, and strength), and her amazing acrobatic skills she learned taking gymnastics at Gotham University.

Originally in 1961, Batgirl was known as “Bat-Girl” and she was portrayed as Batwoman’s niece and sidekick. Then in 1967, in addition to her name change to Batgirl, the superheroine was revamped.

She was no longer a sidekick or love interest. Instead, she is now portrayed as the daughter of Gotham City’s Police Commissioner that is a peer to the other DC characters.

That equality, as well as her strong desire to fight crime, caught the attention of a female audience and as a result, her popularity skyrocketed. She is now regarded as a cultural icon and a symbol of female empowerment.

Batman

Batman is the DC comic book character Bruce Wayne who is a wealthy man living in Gotham City and whose parent’s were killed in front of him when he was a boy. Consequently, he has dedicated his life to fighting crime as his alter ego, Batman (also referred to as the “Caped Crusader” and “The Dark Knight”.

Although Batman is considered a superhero, he has no supernatural powers. Alternatively, he uses his “Batmobile” and expensive gadgets to catch criminals.

Batman wears an electrically charged Kevlar® bulletproof bodysuit (“batsuit”) with a bat emblem, a scalloped hooded cape with sharp spring-loaded bat ears, utility belt (holds stun gas, batarangs, grappling hook, and more), briefs, gloves, and boots.

Blade

Blade is an antihero who uses silver bullets, double-edged sword, and a Teakwood dagger to hunt vampires because one killed his mother. Hence, he is referred to as “the vampire hunter”.

In addition, when Blade’s mother was giving birth to him, a vampire bit her. Consequently, he was born a cross-breed which makes him immune to vampire bites and he ages slower.

In 1998 Marvel released a motion picture featuring Blade played by Wesley Snipes. It was Marvel’s first big success in theaters and was the first theatrical film to portray an African-American with superpowers.

It was such a huge hit that it turned into a trilogy. And even though Blade has been absent from theaters since the early 2000s, he continues to be one of Marvel’s most popular titles.

Catwoman

Catwoman is a fictional DC comic book character. The 411 On Character Backstories for her is that she had a traumatic childhood growing up in Gotham City, she has a love-hate relationship with Batman (her adversary), and her alter ego is a cat burglar and martial arts expert that wears a skintight black catsuit and razor-sharp retractable claws.

As Catwoman, she protects women from bad men and although she does things “wrong”, she does so for the “right” reasons. Befittingly, Catwoman is on both the list of Top 100 Comic Book Heroes of All Time as well as the list of Top 100 Comic Book Villains of All Time.

Clayface

Clayface is a fictional DC comic book character that is an antagonist of Batman. The name Clayface is actually an alias used by several supervillains that have shapeshifting abilities.

In September 1992, Clayface had a starring role in the Batman: The Animated Series fourth and fifth TV episodes titled “Feat of Clay Part I” and “Feat of Clay Part II” in which he was a B-list actor, Matt Hagen, who was disfigured in a car accident.

Hoping to restore his youthful good looks, Hagen becomes addicted to a dangerous experimental regeneration cream that causes him to overdose, and as a result, he turns into a bulky, mud-like form that can shapeshift.

Derek Dynamo

Derek Dynamo is a fictional Image Comics character. He is a 10-year-old supergenious and inventor of high-tech gadgets that he uses to fight crime along with his Tyrannosaurus Rex best friend, Super Dinosaur.

Derek;s father, Doctor Dynamo, is a scientist who discovered a powerful element in the Earth’s core called DynOre. Derek’s archenemy is the villain, Max Maximus, who tried to use the DynOre and Super Dinosaur to take over the world. However, together Doctor Dynamo, Super Dinosaur and Derek (with the assistance of his gadgets) were able to defeat Maximo.

Doctor Dynomo has a condition which causes him to lose concentration therefore Derek has to complete his father’s scientific calculations secretly so that the government doesn’t find out that the DynOre experiments are being conducted by a child.

Dick Tracy

Dick Tracy is the name of a popular comic strip that debuted in newspapers in 1931 and the name of its main character. Tracy, is a rugged and clever man who became a police detective to avenge the death of his love interest’s father.

Dressed in a dark suit with a white shirt, necktie, and a bright yellow overcoat with matching fedora, he persistently chases down criminals using advanced gadgetry and a flying cylindrical vehicle.

Because the comic strip was so popular, there has also been a Dick Tracy radio broadcast and Dick Tracy comic book series. He was even included in the 1995 Comic Strip Classics commemorative postage stamp series.

Green Goblin

The Green Goblin is the Marvel comic book character Norman Osborn, a cunning businessman who founded a chemical research corporation where he discovers a biogenic chemical compound meant to enhance the human body.

When he tests the formula on himself, he turns green and gains superhuman strength, quicker reflexes, and the ability to heal fast. However, the potion also has an adverse effect.

It makes him go insane which leads him to fabricate his new persona, a supervillain, and Spider-Man’s archenemy. Since he is also a mechanical genius, he invents all sorts of technically advanced gadgets like his flying Goblin Glider.

It’s not surprising though that most of his gadgets were developed to cause destruction like his razor bats, blast gloves, electrically charged toy frog, ghost bombs, and pumpkin bombs.

With all his monstrous splendor and gadgetry, the Green Goblin is undoubtedly one of the greatest comic book villains of all time.

Green Lantern

Green Lantern is the name of several DC comics book superheroes who are members of an interstellar law enforcement agency called the Green Lantern Corporation.

The 411 On Character Backstories for them is that they fight evil with a “Power Ring” that gives them remarkable limitless abilities stemming from their imaginations. They wear a black bodysuit with the Power Ring emblem on the chest as well as a green mask, gloves, and boots.

The Green Lanterns are on the list of DC’s longest-lasting characters that not only appeared in comic books, but also appeared in an animated tv series, a 2011 “Green Lantern” movie, and even some video games.

Harley Quinn

Harley Quinn is the fictionsl DC comic book character Harleen Frances Quinzel who attended Gotham State University on a gymnastics scholarship.

Despite her personality disorder, Harley becomes Dr. Harleen Quinzel, a psychiatrist. After graduation, she interns at Gotham City’s Arkham Asylum mental hospital.

While at the asylum, Dr. Quinzel gets assigned to examine, diagnose, and treat a psychopathic patient. That patient was the infamous Joker whom she falls in love with.

Consequently, Dr. Quinzel helps The Joker escape the asylum and, in order to prove her “toxic” devotion to him, she willingly falls into a vat of acid and becomes Harley Quinn., The Joker’s lover and evil accomplice.

To compliment The Joker, Harley wears a black and red jester costume. And although she is considered a “super” villain, Harley has no supernatural powers.

However, she does have super acrobatic abilities and is extremely proficient with using her improvised weapons and hand-to-hand combat.

Additionally, after Poison Ivy injects her with a serum, Harley becomes immune to toxins and gains enhanced agility, durability, strength, and quick reflexes.

Harley made her debut in 1992 on the Batman Animated Television Series. She was so well-received that she re-appeared in issue #12 of The Batman Adventures comic book and several subsequent issues.

From 2001 to 2003, Harley was given her own comic book series that ran 38 issues. Then between 2010 and 2015 Harley was paired up with Catwoman and Poison Ivy.

The trio banded together to protect themselves from the men in Gotham City in the Gotham City Sirens comic book series which ran 26 issues.

In addition, Harley also appeared in a novel, several video games, a 2016 movie “Suicide Squad”, a 2019 Harley Quinn animated television series, and a 2020 movie “Birds of Prey”.

Hong Kong Phooey

Hong Kong Phooey is a Hanna-Barbera character from the animated series “Hong Kong Phooey” that was created based on Bruce Lee’s movie, “Enter the Dragon”.

Consequently, Hong Kong Phooey wears a Shaolin disguise, which is a bandana Domino Mask and an orange robe. He is a humorous and naive super-dog who acts more like a human than a canine.

He fights crime with martial arts that he learned from the handbook, The Hong Kong Book of Kung Fu. Although he thinks that he is the crime-solver, it’s actually the deductive reasoning of his cat Spot that catches most of the criminals.

To turn into his crime-fighting alter ego, he jumps into a filing cabinet, gets stuck, then unstuck, then takes off in his “Phooeymobile” that turns into a boat, plane, or telephone booth when he bangs on his gong.

If you want to see him in action, watch Hong Kong Phooey crossing paths With Safe Thieves on YouTube.

Iceman

Iceman is a Marvel comic book character. The 411 On Character Backstories for Iceman is that his alter ego is Robert Louis Drake who is a mutant and who was a founding member of the X-Men.

He was born with the superhuman ability to freeze himself and things around him. In addition, in the 2015 issue #40 of the All-New X-Men it was revealed that Iceman is gay.

Jack Skellington

Jack Skellington is the main fictional character and protagonist in the Walt Disney Tim Burton movie, “The Nightmare Before Christmas”, that was released in 1993 and is based on the Halloween holiday. Jack is a very tall and thin skeleton that always wears a black and white pin-striped suit with a large bat-looking bow tie.

In addition, he has a pumpkin-shaped skull so he is referred to as the “Pumpkin King” of Halloween Town. Jack tricked the devil two times into not taking his soul so when he died, he couldn’t pass on to heaven or hell and now he is forever stuck in limbo between good and evil.

Mr. Magoo

Mr. Magoo is a fictional Warner Bros. cartoon character. The 411 On Character Backstories for Mr. Magoo is that he is a short wealthy older white man who is use to things working in his favor. And although he has extremely poor vision, he refuses to admit that he can’t see.

Consequently, he is constantly putting himself in danger while comically navigating hazardous situations which he narrowly escapes every time with dumb-luck and determination. Watch his funny “Bungled Bungalow” cartoon that was nominated for an Acadamy Award.

Poison Ivy

The 411 On Character Backstories for Poison Ivy is that she’s a seductive eco-terrorist who lives in Gotham City and always wears a sexy green outfit. She has a special relationship with plants which she loves more than people.

She uses powerful plants to cause destruction and when she is in trouble, she produces toxic floral pheromones that are intoxicating to men which makes the men bend to her will.

Red Skull

The 411 On Character Backstories for Red Skull is that he is a Marvel comic book villain that is considered one of the 14 greatest villains of all time.

He possesses a high intellect and is a highly gifted political operative that wears a Nazi uniform, trench coat, and red and white sash with a pistol in each hand.

Although he has no superhuman abilities, he is a superb martial artist that is well-versed in the use of firearms and explosives and uses a fatal poisonous gas (“dust of death”) that he fires from a trick cigarette.

Silver Surfer

The 411 On Character Backstories for the Silver Surfer is that he is a Marvel comic book character that is a cosmic-powered silver-skinned super-being who rides a metallic surfboard.

Using the surfboard, he travels through space faster than the speed of light. His superhuman abilities also include exceptional strength and the ability to absorb and manipulate the universe’s energy.

His first appearance was in issue #48 of the Fantastic Four comic book series. He is currently ranked as one of the greatest comic book characters of all time appearing on film, tv, and in video games.

Spider-Man

The 411 On Character Backstories for Spider-Man is that he is a Marvel comic book superhero who wears a head-to-toe red and blue bodysuit with a black webbing design and spider on his chest.

He is the crime-fighting alter-ego of Peter Parker who became Spider-Man when he was bitten by a radioactive spider at a science exhibit. The bite enhanced his senses giving him an acute awareness to detect danger.

The bite also heightened his athletic abilities enabling him to cling to, and scale, buildings. In addition, as a way to swing through the air from building to building, Peter invents a wrist-mounted device that shoots webs.

Spider-Man is one of the most iconic comic book characters and, having appeared in movies, television, and video games, he is the most commercially successful superhero.

The Flash

The 411 On Character Backstories for The Flash, one of DC Comics’ most popular characters, is that his real name was Barry Allen who was orphaned at 11 years old when his father was wrongly convicted of murder and his mother died.

He later becomes a crime scene investigator who develops a superhero alter-ego after he is struck by lightning and gains the ability to move, run, and think at lightning speed.

Because of his enormous fan base, in 2014 they gave him his own television series. The pilot was the second most-watched premiere in the history of the CW Network.

Consequently, the series won a People’s Choice award for “Favorite New TV Drama”. This year 2022 the series will be airing season eight.

Two Face

Two Face is a DC comic book supervillain that made his debut in 1942 in Detective Comics #66 and has been ranked as the 12th-greatest comic book villain of all time by IGN Entertainment.

He is called “Two-Face” because the left side of his face is horrifically distorted from acid being thrown at him. Prior to becoming Two-Face, he was Gotham City’s District Attorney, Harvey Dent.

Harvey and Bruce Wayne became friends as young boys when they met at a summer camp for traumatized children (Bruce’s parents had just been murdered in front of him and Harvey came from a broken home where his father physically abused him and his mother) and they remained allies (with a shared conviction of wanting to stop criminals) until Harvey’s Accident.

After the accident, Harvey goes mad, his alter ego takes over, he becomes obsessed with the number two and the duality of good and evil flipping a two-headed silver dollar coin to determine which of his personalities would take over (if the scarred side landed face up he would commit a crime).

Although he is considered a “supervillain”, he has no superpowers. Instead, he expertise as a lawyer makes him a criminal mastermind who is also an expert marksman extremely proficient in the use of firearms, knives, and hand-to-hand combat.

Venom

The 411 On Character Backstories for Venom, one of the greatest Marvel comic book villains, is that it is an extraterrestrial parasite with a dual liquid-like form that shapeshifts.

However, in order to survive, it requires a host (usually human) to bond with. His first human host was Spider-Man who later becomes his archenemy.

After bonding with a human host, the alien bestows its powers of exceptional insight and great physical strength upon the host whom with it occasionally does good deeds.

Venom has big white eyes, a long lizard-like tongue, sharp teeth, bulging muscles, and a spider symbol on his chest. He is ranked as one of the greatest comic book villains that has also appeared in tv, film, and video games.

Wolverine

The 411 On Character Backstories for Wolverine is that it is a Marvel comic book superhero that wears a yellow and blue bodysuit and is the alter-ego of “Login” who gets surgically transformed into a mutant.

Animal-like adaptations were made to his body, including sharp fangs and retractable claws, and his skeleton was reinforced with an indestructible metal that makes him immune to diseases, drugs, and toxins which in turn allows him to heal faster and live longer.

Wolverine has had his own comic book series since 1988, appearing in films, television, and video games and has been ranked as one of the greatest comic book characters of all time.


This concludes the Brief 411 On Character Backstories for now but we will continue to periodically add more info to the 411 On Character Backstories. If you would like to add or modify our Brief 411 On Character Backstories, please contact us.

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