As you all know, superhero comic books are a serial medium, and superhero continuity, in particular, is an ever-changing status quo as characters change dramatically over the years. However, “classic” storylines are often viewed on their own and not as a part of whatever continuity was current at the time the story was released. As a result, when you look back at these storylines and the issues surrounding them, there often is a bit of a disconnect between viewing these stories as “timeless” and the reality that they are very much rooted in their own particular era.
This is the latest in a series (of indefinite length and regularity) of pieces looking at interesting overlaps in comic book continuity. Today, let’s look at the use of Bloodwynd in the Death of Superman (NOTE: This’ll take the place of Abandoned an’ Forsaked this week).
Bloodwynd was a new addition to the Justice League during Dan Jurgens’ run on the title, a necromancer who gained powers from communicating with the spirits of the dead.
I love superhero names like this, by the way. “Hello, I am Bloodwynd.” “Hey, Bloodwind, nice to meet you.” “No, not Bloodwind, Bloodwynd.” “That’s what I said, Bloodwind.” “No, you said Bloodwind. My name is Bloodwynd” etc. etc.
Anyhow, as it turned out, Bloodwynd was actually the Martian Manhunter in disguise. The REAL Bloodwynd (who really WAS a necromancer who gained powers from communicating with the spirits of the dead) was trapped inside the big Blood Gem by a demonic force ALSO trapped inside the Gem who then mind-controlled the Martian Manhunter to take the form of Bloodwynd until “Bloodwynd” could come across a superhero with just the right power source to help the demonic force escape from the Blood Gem (it eventually turned out to be the Ray, but in the end, the League stopped the demon and allowed the real Bloodwynd to return and for the Martian Manhunter to return to his own identity).
When the Death of Superman came around, though, no one knew Bloodwynd’s true identity yet.
So he was just some brand new guy fighting Doomsday along with the rest of the League…
Bloodwynd even got to appear at the end of Superman #75, as part of the most famous sequence from the final part of the storyline…
It was a bit odd to fans in 1992 to see this no-name guy (Bloodwynd was out of the Justice League within a couple of years and has only made a handful of appearances in the last 20 years), but it is REALLY odd for readers now, as the guy is such a foot note in comics history and there he is at the end of the Death of Superman.