01 December 2007

The Friends and Foes of Batman - Huntress

Over the years, several women have assumed the name Huntress. The original Huntress, renamed Tigress, had little to do with Batman. The second Huntress, Helena Wayne, was Batman and Catwoman's alternate reality daughter. The third Huntress, Helena Rosa Bertinelli, is a sometimes ally of Batman, and a member of the Birds of Prey.

Huntresses have appeared in the 1979 NBC Legends of the Superheroes TV special, the Birds of Prey series, and in the animated Justice League Unlimited.

Helena Wayne was trained by her parents to become a superb athlete. After finishing school, she joined the law firm of Cranston and Grayson, one of whose partners was Dick Grayson, alias Robin. Helena began her super-hero career when a criminal blackmailed her mother into resuming action once again as Catwoman -- an act which eventually led to her death. Helena, deciding to bring the criminal responsible to justice, created a costume for herself, fashioned some weapons from her parents' equipment (including her eventual trademark, a crossbow), and set out to bring in the criminal. After accomplishing this, Helena decided to continue to fight crime, under the code name the "Huntress." Helena formally joined the Justice Society of America where she struck up a friendship with fellow new superheroine Power Girl. Helena was killed while in the Crisis on Infinite Earths reboot, attempting to save the lives of several children. After Crisis ended, Helena Wayne's existence, like that of her parents and Earth-Two's Dick Grayson, was retroactively erased from the remaining Earth and the world no longer remembered her.

Due to the popularity of the character, DC Comics introduced a new version of the Huntress with the same first name and a similar costume, but with an entirely different backstory and different personality. The Modern Age Huntress is Helena Rosa Bertinelli, the daughter of one of Gotham's mafia bosses who, after seeing her entire family murdered by a mob hit, vows revenge. Batman rarely accepts the Huntress, believing her to be too unpredictable and violent. Others in the Batman family feel differently; for instance, Tim Drake has a good relationship with her. Early in his career he worked with the female vigilante, and later cleared her name in a murder case. Batman sponsored Huntress's membership in the Justice League, and for some time, Huntress was a respected member of the League. Under the guidance of heroes such as Superman, Helena grew in confidence but was forced to resign after Batman stoped her from killing the villain Prometheus. Helena is currently a member of the Birds of Prey, and although still prone at times to excessive violence, she has become a valuable member of the team

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Friend and Foe Profiles:

Ra's al Ghul
Talia al Ghul
Baby Doll
Bat-Hound (Ace)
Black Mask
David Cain
Calendar Man & Calendar Girl
Clock King
Crazy Quilt
Floronic Man
Mr. Freeze
Jim Gordon
Harley Quinn
Humpty Dumpty

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