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Shiera Sanders Hall
Hawkgirl
Shiera Sanders Hall as Hawkgirl, on the cover of Sensation Comics vol. 2, 1 (March 1999)
Art by Dave Johnson and Lee Loughridge
Publication information
PublisherDC Comics
First appearance(Hall)
Flash Comics #1 (January 1940)
(Hall as Hawkgirl)
All Star Comics #5
Created by(Hall)
Gardner Fox
Dennis Neville
(Hall as Hawkgirl)
Sheldon Moldoff
In-story information
Full nameShiera Sanders Hall
Team affiliationsJustice Society of America
All-Star Squadron
Black Lantern Corps
Justice League
White Lantern Corps
PartnershipsHawkman (Carter Hall)
Notable aliasesHawkgirl
Abilities
  • Flight via Nth metal feathered wings
  • Reincarnation via Nth metal knife
  • Highly skilled armed and unarmed combatant
  • Superhuman strength and super-acute vision
  • Has a healing factor
  • Ability to communicate with birds
  • Utilizes Nth metal gravity-defying belt and archaic weaponry
  • Temperature regulation
  • Immortality granted through reincarnation process
  • Multilingualism
  • Has exceptional senses and hearing thanks to long-term exposure to Nth metal
  • Superhuman endurance

Shiera Sanders Hall is a fictional supporting character and later superheroine as Hawkgirl appearing in American comic books published by DC Comics. Shiera Sanders Hall was created by writer Gardner Fox and artist Dennis Neville, and first appeared in Flash Comics #1 (January 1940) as a romantic interest of Hawkman (Carter Hall). Then later as one of DC's earliest super-heroines, she has appeared in many of the company's flagship team-up titles including the Justice Society of America.

Publication history

Created by writer Gardner Fox and artist Dennis Neville, Shiera Sanders first appeared in Flash Comics #1 (January 1940), in the same 12-page story in which Fox and Neville introduced Hawkman.[1] Archaeologist Carter Hall has a dream that he is an ancient Egyptian prince, Khufu, who has a lover, named Shiera in the original story, or Princess Chay-Ara in modern retellings. The next day, Carter meets a woman named Shiera, who looks exactly like the woman in his dream. Carter dons the identity of Hawkman and Shiera becomes Carter's girlfriend. Shiera first appears as Hawkgirl in All Star Comics #5 (July 1941), in a costume created by Sheldon Moldoff,[2] based on Neville's Hawkman costume. During Hawkman's solo segment of the Justice Society of America story, Shiera dons a spare set of Nth metal wings developed by Hawkman, and masquerades as Hawkman in order to trick some criminals. Shiera continues to wear the costume and wings in later stories, eventually adopting the identity of Hawkgirl.

With the establishment of DC's multiverse system, the Golden Age Hawkgirl was said to have lived on Earth-Two and the Silver Age Hawkgirl on Earth-One. Although Golden Age Hawkman makes his first Silver Age appearance during the first JLA/JSA team-ups in 1963 and continues making appearances during the annual JLA/JSA team-ups, Golden Age Hawkgirl does not reappear until 1976, in the revival of the All Star Comics monthly comic. During the publication gap between the cancellation of Hawkman at the end of the Golden Age and the reintroduction of Earth-Two Hawkman during the Silver Age, Golden Age Hawkman and Hawkgirl are married off-panel. Golden Age Hawkgirl made further appearances as the mother of Silver Scarab in the Infinity Inc. comic and as Hawkgirl as a member of the All-Star Squadron, a retroactive team of Golden Age heroes active in the 1940s.

Post-Crisis and One Year Later

Following the events of DC's miniseries, Crisis on Infinite Earths, the histories of Earth-One, Two, Four, S, and X were merged into one single Earth with a consistent past, present, and future. As a result, both the Golden Age and the Silver Age versions of Hawkman and Hawkgirl live on the same Earth. Shortly after Crisis on Infinite Earths, DC decided that having the Justice Society on the same Earth as all of the other superheroes was redundant and most of the team, including Golden Age Hawkman and Hawkgirl were given a sendoff in the Last Days of the Justice Society one-shot. The Justice Society were trapped in another dimension, Limbo, where they would battle for all of eternity to prevent Ragnarök from occurring on the Earth.

Shiera was resurrected after Blackest Night.

Fictional character biography

Hawkgirl (Shiera Hall).Art by Ivan Reis.
Hawkgirl (Shiera Hall).
Art by Ivan Reis.

Shiera is the reincarnation of the Egyptian princess Chay-Ara and the partner of Carter Hall, the Golden Age Hawkman. Centuries ago, Chay-Ara and her lover Prince Khufu were killed by Hath-Set with a knife forged from Nth metal. The properties of the metal and the strength of the duo's love created a bond between them, causing them to be reborn multiple times throughout the centuries. Some of her incarnations are:

In the early 20th century, Chay-Ara was reborn as Shiera Sanders. She was kidnapped by Dr. Anton Hastor (reincarnation of Hath-Set), but subsequently rescued by Hawkman (her reborn lover Khufu). Shiera became the hero's frequent ally and love interest. Eventually, she was granted a costume of her own and a belt of gravity-defying Nth metal, and joined him at his side as Hawkgirl.

The Hawks were members of the All-Star Squadron, and while Hawkman was a member of the Justice Society of America, Hawkgirl was not, only assisting the group on occasion. Following the events of DC's miniseries, Crisis on Infinite Earths, Shiera Hall joined the JSA. Eventually, Carter and Shiera married and had one son, Hector Hall, the previous Doctor Fate.

Through retcon, Carter and Shiera also joined the Justice League of America in the late 1980s, serving as liaisons between that group and the Justice Society.

Appearance of Shiera as a White Lantern in Justice League: Generation Lost.
Appearance of Shiera as a White Lantern in Justice League: Generation Lost.

Shiera died when she was merged with Carter and Katar Hol to form a new Hawkman version, a "hawk god" creature, during the events of Zero Hour, but was revived during the events of Blackest Night by the White Lantern ring.

Powers and abilities

Main article: Hawkgirl § Powers and abilities

Other versions

Main article: Hawkgirl § other versions

DC Bombshells

In the DC Bombshells continuity set in World War II, Shiera is a technological genius and archaeologist who aids the Bombshells with her lover, Vixen. As Hawkgirl, she uses a jetpack rather than fly with wings, though when Cheetah forces her to build weapons out of ancient technology, she designs one with wings as well as a powerful mace.

Shiera grew up in an orphanage in Mexico. From a young age she had a passion for history and ancient cultures, as well as the magnificent structures that they built. She became an archaeologist and her work caught the eye of Hans Garber. He informed her of the Zambesi Amulets and the power that they possessed.[3]

Intrigued, Shiera goes to Zambesi to try to discover the secret of the amulets. There she met Queen Mari of Zambesi and the two of them fell in love. Shiera stayed in Zambesi with Mari and became her personal mechanic, building gadgets to assist Mari against her enemies.

Hawkgirl discovers her true Thanagarian origins while fighting against Baroness Paula von Gunther. After connecting herself with an ancient mechanic god it's revealed to Shiera that her parents were members of the Wingmen of Thanagar, they sought to warn the humans upon the intentions of Thanagar who wished to conquer the Earth; due to their actions they were captured and murdered.[4]

Injustice: Gods Among Us

In the comic book adaptation of Injustice: Gods Among Us, Hawkgirl (Shiera Hall) appears as a member of Superman's Regime. She first appears to answer Wonder Woman's call for heroes at the Watchtower. After being informed of the situation, the kidnapping of Superman's parents at the hands of Mirror Master, she is one of the many heroes to agree to help locate the Rogue. She battles Weather Wizard in Central City, and is later seen waiting outside the villain's bar. Hawkgirl next appears to help Wonder Woman battle the attacking Atlanteans and Aquaman. Hawkgirl battles the forces of Atlantis as Wonder Woman orders her to rescue the people who had been knocked off the boat by Aquaman's attack. She watches Arthur's forces suddenly retreat and notices the massive tsunami fast approaching. She is the first to realize there is something behind the wave. Hawkgirl spots what she believes are mountains rising out of the water, but are in fact the massive tentacles of the Kraken Aquaman called to his aid. Hawkgirl is ensnared by one of the Kraken's tentacles and dragged underwater, slowly drowning while Wonder Woman struggles to save her. After Superman arrives and forces Aquaman to call his beast off, Hawkgirl is ordered by the Man of Steel to help the sailors while Superman and the League go to give their response to Aquaman's ultimatum. Hawkgirl removes the leader of a country from his limousine during a parade before she loses him to Captain Atom. Shocked, Shiera lets her guard down and is struck by a blast of electricity, causing her to fall to the streets below. Collapsed, Hawkgirl sees Black Lightning and Huntress before the latter knocks her unconscious with an arrow bolt. Hawkgirl is later seen being held in a cell in the Batcave, glaring at Batman and Catwoman as they discuss the League's reaction to her kidnapping. When Catwoman points out the League will be searching for her, Batman disagrees and the scene cuts to the Watchtower, where to many heroes shock, a second Hawkgirl is seen arriving. The true Hawkgirl has remained trapped within the Batcave while her imposter has been revealed as the Martian Manhunter, shape-shifted into her form. Exactly a week later, the Martian Manhunter is exposed thanks to Batman's son Damian, and Bruce releases Hawkgirl as promised. Shiera makes her way to the crashed Watchtower and confirms her identity by easily putting out a lit match.

Hawkgirl goes to the Hall of Justice to question Lex Luthor over whether Sinestro truly willingly gave up his ring and powers before allowing himself to be imprisoned. Luthor confirms her questions before saying he still believes Sinestro has something else to play before Sinestro responds that the Green Lanterns will soon arrive to capture Superman and that the League will need his help to stop them. Hawkgirl is next seen waiting for Superman and Shazam in Utah at the Great Salt desert, mace at the ready as she answers Shazam's question of what the Man of Steel thinks they're dealing with by replying "He thinks we're dealing with Green Lanterns." When Superman asks how she knows, she tells him she was talking with their 'guest' at the Hall of Justice. When she sees Superman staring up into the sky, she asks how many Lanterns are on the way, with Superman replying, "Too many."

After the Green Lanterns arrive in front of them and Superman and Kilowog have a brief conversation, Shiera demands to know where Hal Jordan is, and when Kilowog doesn't respond, Superman has Cyborg fire a beam down on the Green Lanterns from the Watchtower.

The Green Lanterns survive and engage the three, with Hawkgirl fighting the Green Lanterns Isamot Kol and RRU-9-2, when she sees Superman suddenly go down, calling out his name. Shortly after, Hawkgirl is defeated, her Nth Metal mace taken by Green Lantern Tomar-Re, and her unconscious body trapped in a bubble construct alongside Shazam. Before any of them can be taken to Oa, Sinestro arrives, killing Ch'p. Shiera is freed and recovers her mace before engaging Tomar-Re and Procanon Kaa in a battle until the arrival of the Sinestro Corps. Hawkgirl flies above the captured Green Lanterns, silently observing as they remove their rings in surrender and she witnesses the Sinestro Corps depart the Earth on Sinestro's orders. During the lost seven months, Hawkgirl worked alongside fellow League members Superman and Shazam as well as Lanterns Hal, John and Sinestro in toppling more 'rogue nations' to continue establishing peace across the world.

When Hawkman returns to Thanagar and does not find Hawkgirl he goes to Earth. There he tries to force Hawkgirl to leave Superman's Regime and return home, but, loyal to Superman, Shiera fights against Hawkman; after defeating him she asks him to leave or she will kill him. Not respecting her wish, Hawkman later returns to Earth and tries to kill Superman with a kryptonite mace; he fails and is killed in a fist fight against Superman.

Bombshells: United

Hawkgirl appears as Shiera Hall in the continuation series to DC Comics Bombshells, Bombshells: United set in the United States in 1943. Shiera is shown in Zambesi alongside her lover, Vixen.[5] Hawkgirl is later featured fighting against the Apokolips invasion on Earth.[6]

In other media

Television

Video games

Hawkgirl in a promotional image for Injustice: Gods Among Us.
Hawkgirl in a promotional image for Injustice: Gods Among Us.

Hawkgirl appears as a playable character in Injustice: Gods Among Us, voiced by Jennifer Hale. The "prime" version is a member of the Justice League while an alternate reality version became a member of Superman's Regime. After the Regime is defeated, she is captured and imprisoned. In her non-canonical single-player ending, Hawkgirl is revealed to have been brainwashed by the Regime. Once she gets free, she defeats Superman for killing her husband Hawkman, but is imprisoned for her role in the Regime. One night, she is teleported to a stone of pure Nth Metal, which encases her in invincible armor. Using her new power, she sets out to exact revenge on those who helped Superman capture Hawkman.

References

  1. ^ Flash Comics #1 at the Grand Comics Database
  2. ^ Hawkgirl at the Grand Comics Database
  3. ^ "Shiera (DC Bombshells)".
  4. ^ DC Bombshells #24 (June 2017)
  5. ^ Bombshells: United #11 (November 2017)
  6. ^ Bombshells: United #37 (May 2018)