Icemaiden
Publication information
PublisherDC Comics
First appearanceSuper Friends #9 (December 1977)
Created byE. Nelson Bridwell (writer)
Ramona Fradon (artist)
In-story information
Alter egoSigrid Nansen
Team affiliationsJustice League America
Global Guardians
Justice League
PartnershipsFire
Ice
Abilities
  • Has the cryokinetic ability to emit ice and snow from her body
  • Ice generation & control
  • Snow creation & manipulation
  • Ice breath
  • Cryokinetic constructs
  • Cryokinetic creature creation
  • Cryokinetic projectiles

Icemaiden (Sigrid Nansen) is a fictional comic book superheroine in the DC Comics universe. She was the first hero to use the name, and for a time was replaced by Ice. She was also one of the few ice-themed superheroes in the DC Universe. She first appeared in Super Friends #9 (Dec 1977).[1]

Fictional character biography

Global Guardians

Sigrid Nansen received her powers as the result of an experiment funded by the Norwegian government. In an attempt to please both her overbearing scientist mother (who constantly belittled her for not having a boyfriend and not being a top scientist) and the Norwegian government, Sigrid reluctantly agreed to the experiments. The goal was to duplicate the abilities of what at the time were a legendary tribe of Ice-people; the experiment was a success, though as a side-effect Sigrid's skin was permanently turned blue. Taking the name Icemaiden, she joined the Global Guardians as her country's representative to that international super-team.[2]

Legends

During the DC miniseries Legends (1986) the people of the United States were turned against all heroes, superheroes, and metahumans; the President even decreed that no costumed hero could operate legally. This did not affect the Global Guardians, however, who worked outside of the U.S. During this time, what Sylvester Pemberton referred to as the "Great Super-Hero Scare"[3] Doctor Mist sent Icemaiden, along with Rising Sun, the Tasmanian Devil, and the Green Flame to Canada to run security for the international Trade Conference. Icemaiden fell victim, however, to the group calling itself Injustice Unlimited, and was hypnotized into serving the villains. This resulted in her traveling to Greenland with Jade and the new Icicle on a mission to find and free Solomon Grundy. In the end, the villains were defeated and Icemaiden regained her free will.[4]

Resignation

Upon the discovery of a real tribe of Ice-people, their princess Tora Olafsdotter (Ice) joined the Global Guardians. This led Sigrid to quit the team.

Justice League

Years later, after Ice had left the Global Guardians, joined the Justice League International, and was killed by the Overmaster, Sigrid re-emerged. She chose to honor the fallen heroine by serving as their replacement in the Justice League.

There were hints of a romantic relationship with their teammate Fire, but this was all part of a plan hatched by Sigrid. Realizing Fire was not coping with Ice's death (and Fire was attempting to control her, much like Sigrid's mother had done growing up), she dressed up to resemble Ice and showed romantic feelings toward Fire. The shock made Fire realize that Ice was gone, and she could not recreate the past. During her time in the JLA, she was disliked and criticized by Guy Gardner, who had also not come to terms with Ice's death.

She left active duty with the League after she and several others were heavily wounded during the attack of the Hyperclan (White Martians). Later recovered, Sigrid resumed her superhero career and is assumed to have eventually joined an unofficial branch of Justice League Europe. That League chapter was, however, infiltrated by the Mist, who apparently lured Icemaiden away and subsequently disguised herself as the blue-skinned hero before killing three League members: Crimson Fox, Amazing Man, and Blue Devil.

In the same story, it was revealed that Mist covertly contacted Icemaiden and informed them of a supposed threat facing their homeland of Norway, and she must defeat the threat without informing anyone until afterwards. Icemaiden left during the middle of the night, and Mist replaced them within the JLE by the next morning. The JLE did not know that Mist replaced Icemaiden until Mist began her attacks against them. Mist informed Crimson Fox that the threat she informed Icemaiden about was not real, and that she had sent Icemaiden on an ultimately fruitless search so that she could disguise herself as Icemaiden and replace her on the team.[5]

One Year Later

Main article: One Year Later

After the "Infinite Crisis" storyline, it was revealed that Icemaiden had at some point been abducted by the supervillain Warp, a capture paid for by a mysterious "organ-napper" who turned out to be former film actress Delores Winters. Winters—believed to have been killed decades earlier by the Ultra-Humanite—longed for new flesh to replace her own aging skin and had her personal physician surgically flay the Icemaiden in order to harvest their superpowered skin. Icemaiden did not die, however, and eventually was placed, comatose, into a hydration womb within a facility of S.T.A.R. Labs.[6] Later, in the same story, the hydration womb is cracked. It is unknown if Icemaiden survived.

It is mentioned in this story that Icemaiden has alabaster skin, although she had blue skin in all of their prior appearances save for her appearances in Extreme Justice.[7]

Delores was recently killed in a battle with Batwoman, and her corpse was taken by the Justice League. It is unknown if they will be able to remove the skin.

Infinite Frontier

Sigrid returned in the winter holiday special "Tis the Season to be Freezin" in Andrew Wheeler and Meghan Hetrick's "Break the Ice" story and takes the codename of Glacier.[8] Though the story itself doesn't say anything about it, and Sigrid does not comment on it herself in the story, Andrew Wheeler stated on Twitter that the intention was to have Sigrid become nonbinary in the story but it hasn't been confirmed officially in any story.

Relationships

Sigrid is one of the few bisexual superheroes operating in the DC Universe. They were flirtatious with Nuklon during their time together in the JLA, and then later became involved with Olivia Reynolds, the ex-girlfriend of Hal Jordan.[9]

She's also showed interest in Judaism during their conversations with Nuklon.

After Tis the Season to Be Freezin Sigrid may now be nonbinary.[8]

Powers and abilities

Icemaiden possesses abilities surrounding ice, snow and cold. Sigrid's powers are not natural as they are the result of scientific experiments, imitating the Nordic mythical Ice-people. Whether it was a success because she had a dormant gene is unknown.

Icemaiden can control small quantities of snow and ice, and project ice shields and icicles from her body, but their greatest ability is to become very cold and create ice armor in times of great stress. Their powers are closely linked to their mental state.

References

  1. ^ Cowsill, Alan; Irvine, Alex; Korte, Steve; Manning, Matt; Wiacek, Win; Wilson, Sven (2016). The DC Comics Encyclopedia: The Definitive Guide to the Characters of the DC Universe. DK Publishing. p. 148. ISBN 978-1-4654-5357-0.
  2. ^ Greenberger, Robert (2008), "Global Guardians", in Dougall, Alastair (ed.), The DC Comics Encyclopedia, New York: Dorling Kindersley, p. 138, ISBN 978-0-7566-4119-1, OCLC 213309017
  3. ^ Infinity Inc. Special #1 (1987)
  4. ^ Infinity Inc. #32-37
  5. ^ Starman #38
  6. ^ JSA Classified #19-20 (Jan-Feb 2007). DC Comics.
  7. ^ Extreme Justice #10-11 (Nov-Dec 1995)
  8. ^ a b Tis The Season To Be Freezin #1
  9. ^ Justice League America #110, #113