Volcana as depicted in Superman: The Animated Series.
Publication information
First appearance"Where There's Smoke" (1998)
Created byHilary J. Bader
In-story information
Alter egoClaire Selton
Supporting character ofSuperman

Volcana (Claire Selton) is a supervillain in Superman: The Animated Series. Voiced by Peri Gilpin, she made her first appearance in the episode "Where There's Smoke".

Fictional character biography

Superman: The Animated Series

The supervillainess known as Volcana was originally named Claire Selton. As a teenager, Claire showed an aptitude for pyrokinesis — the ability to start fires with one's mind.[1] Her parents sent her to Metropolis' Center for Paranormal Studies so that she could learn to control and develop her power, but she was soon taken by government agents who had big plans for her. According to the director of the Center, the agents "stripped away her past, code-named her Volcana, and tried their hardest to turn her into a living weapon".

Volcana would not go along with the plan. She escaped from the agents, became a hunted fugitive and survived the only way she could: by stealing. Following the fire activity on a ship, Volcana contacted her fence Donnie to find a way to get her out of town and to meet at the "usual place". After the call with Volcana, Donnie was approached by three men in suits who ask him about where the "usual place" is. Superman later had contact with Volcana. They fought briefly, then Volcana escaped. When she arrived at the "usual place" to meet with Donnie only to run into Kurt (one of the three men in suits) who mentioned that he was the one who originally kidnapped her.

Before Volcana could retaliate, she was hit by a powerful flame retardant by the other agents and captured. Superman later arrived at the same spot and managed to interrogate one of the men that worked for Kurt. Volcana was held in a gas tank in an underground facility where Kurt stated that he will sell Volcana to another government where they will dissect her and discover the source of her abilities. When Superman arrived, he indicated that Kurt was doing this for his own reasons; the original "Project Firestorm" was shut down. During Superman's fight with Kurt's men, the gas tank housing Volcana was damaged enough for her to break out of it. Volcana managed to wreak havoc on the facility to take revenge on Kurt. Her attacks ignited several hydrogen tanks. The explosion stunned her while Superman evacuated the endangered combatants. Superman placed her on a deserted island where Superman delivered her food in exchange that she stayed on the island and did not harm anyone.

She made a cameo appearance in the later episode "Unity", having a brief fight with Supergirl. It is not explained why she left the island or why she returned to villainy despite having been on good terms with Superman.

Justice League and Justice League Unlimited
Volcana from the Justice League episode "Only a Dream".
Volcana from the Justice League episode "Only a Dream".

Volcana made appearances in the episodes "Only a Dream" and "Hereafter" of Justice League, voiced again by Peri Gilpin. In the episode "Only a Dream" Volcana is incarcerated at a Metropolis jail and takes advantage of a prison riot to escape with fellow villain Firefly. She shows a willingness to use her powers lethally in this episode, which brings the character to a more sinister level than before.

It was established that the government project that created her was part of a long-running collaboration between the US military and major corporations to secretly experiment on metahumans and alien technology.[2] An early version of Project Cadmus existed in the wake of Superman's attempted invasion of Earth while under Darkseid's control,[3] producing the metahuman teenagers of the Royal Flush Gang[4] and the creature Doomsday that fought the Justice Lords.[5] The Justice Lords' attack gave Cadmus renewed focus under Amanda Waller, as the government realized it had no way to counter an attack by the Justice League should they go rogue, and led to the creation of Galatea and the Ultimen.

She appears briefly also in a cameo in the episode "To Another Shore", seen onscreen by Mr. Terrific, while she battles the Red Tornado.

She has also appeared as a member of Gorilla Grodd's Secret Society and was seen battling the invading forces of Darkseid in the series finale. In this episode she is shown to fly under her own power, which is could explain how she left her island to rejoin society. Volcana witnesses Darkseid's return and was saved by Star Sapphire and Sinestro. She is one of the survivors alive at the end of the battle and was last seen taking advantage of the "five minute head start" the Justice League gives her after fighting with Darkseid ceased.

Power and abilities

Volcana in her fire form.
Volcana in her fire form.

Claire was known to have the ability to mentally control fire, which is called/known as pyrokinesis. She was also seen to turn her body, completely into fire. She can project blasts of it without harming herself, but without oxygen it will prevent her from create fires. Because she, as part-human, also requires oxygen to breathe, she is particularly vulnerable to asphyxiation.


Volcana has only made two single appearances in the Superman Adventures comics based on her original appearances on the DC Animated Universe, in issues #20 and #41 respectively.

In other media

Video games

She appears as a boss in Superman: Shadow of Apokolips and Superman: Countdown to Apokolips. Peri Gilpin reprises her role in both games.


In 2007, Volcana received her very own action figure as part of Mattel's Justice League Unlimited action figure line. The figure was released as part of a three-figure pack with Hawk and Green Arrow and is about 10 cm tall. Due to poor distribution of many of the 2007 assortments of JLU action figures, Volcana quickly became one of the rarest and most sought after pieces in the Justice League line.


  1. ^ "Where There's Smoke". Superman: The Animated Series. Warner Bros. 1998.
  2. ^ "Fearful Symmetry". Justice League Unlimited. Warner Bros. 2004.
  3. ^ "Legacy". Superman: The Animated Series. Warner Bros. 2000.
  4. ^ "Wild Cards". Justice League. Warner Bros. 2003.
  5. ^ "A Better World". Justice League. Warner Bros. 2003.