Within the annals of DC comic book history, there are scores of impressive character, heroes and villains who keep readers on the edge of their seats. One of the greatest fictional universes, DC Comics continues proving itself as a pop culture juggernaut, much like it’s done for well over half a century. The DC Comics brand has even grown stronger in the last couple years, as movies featuring their ultimate characters like Batman, Superman, and Wonder Woman attract an ever-growing number of fans. People want further exposure to these heroes and their adventures. The Justice League, DC’s greatest superhero team, is also garnering tremendous interest amongst the public, what with a new movie coming out.
However, in spite of all the success, or maybe despite of it, there’s a great deal of DC’s history, especially where romantic relationships are concerned, the publisher would rather you not remember. It’s not because all the entanglements were inappropriate, though some surely were, but DC is clearly looking to build a certain image with specific characters; past trysts get in the way of that. Today at CBR, we’re looking at 15 Justice League hookups DC Comics would be really inclined to have you forget.
15 WONDER WOMAN AND SUPERMAN
The idea of Wonder Woman and Superman hooking up has been around for decades. Two of the most powerful beings on Earth, it’s easy to see why they could make for a formidable pair. Back in Action Comics #600, Superman expressed interest in dating Wonder Woman, but she replied by saying they ought to remain friends.
While we’ve seen them together in The Dark Knight Returns series and Kingdom Come, they never hooked up canonically until the New 52. Justice League #12 featured the two becoming an item. Their relationship lasted for years until the New 52 Superman died and it was revealed he was only an aspect of the original Superman. The real Clark Kent and Diana addressed the matter briefly and then was never heard of again. Clearly, DC didn’t find the relationship as successful as they originally planned and have tried to remove all evidence of it.
14 THE FLASH AND ZATANNA
Barry Allen, the Flash, hasn’t had the easiest life. The Reverse-Flash, the Flash’s greatest adversary, once murdered Iris West, who at the time was Barry’s wife. Left depressed, it took a while for Barry to move on, but he found solace in the unexpected arms of Zatanna. They had a short, flirtatious relationship; since this was the early days of Justice League comics, we never saw them hook up, but they totally did.
In Justice League of America #187, readers saw their relationship blossom. The two heroes were alone aboard the Watchtower Satellite and got to talk about whether they ought to date one another. Preparing to have dinner, Zatanna removed Barry’s mask, and then the comic cut to a kettle with steam boiling out. It’s been decades, but there’s almost never been any mention of this pairing.
13 THE ATOM AND JEAN LORING
After Jean Loring, the wife of the Atom, got caught cheating on her husband, they broke up. Ray Palmer, the Atom, moved on and fell in love with a miniaturized Amazonian princess. Flash-forward to Identity Crisis and things took a darker turn. Sue Dibny, the wife of Elongated Man, is found murdered. It sends the entire superhero community in an uproar as they try to figure out who committed the horrible deed.
Turns out, Jean really missed Ray and wanted him back. She resorted to murdering one of their best friends to make it happen. Not only was she ultimately responsible for Sue’s death, but she orchestrated the deaths of Firestorm, Jack Drake, and Captain Boomerang, all in hopes of Ray running back to her. Her plan worked, until Ray found out what she’d done and the Justice League locked her away in Arkahm.
12 GUY GARDNER AND ICE
Despite beginning his tenure as a backup Green Lantern for Hal Jordan, Guy Gardner grew to prominence and became one of the highest regarded Green Lanterns. He’s been a part of numerous teams; his incredible power an invaluable asset. Guy’s also had his share of hookups and romantic partners along the way. His most famous relationship was with Tora Olafsdotter, or Ice.
Soon after she joined the Justice League, Tora started developing feelings for Guy, thinking he was charming. However, the two were constantly on and off again, and Guy’s cocky attitude and temper didn’t help matters any. Though they were in love, Guy couldn’t behave around her and once Superman joined the team, things became more awkward; Ice started crushing hard on the Man of Steel. It didn’t work out. These days in Rebirth, it’s a relationship that’s never spoken of.
11 SUPERMAN AND MAXIMA
Maxima was introduced 1989’s Action Comics #645. A hotheaded despot from the planet Almerac, she came to Earth seeking the perfect mate. She found said perfect mate in Superman. She argued she could produce children for Superman, something Earth women likely could not. Superman rejected her advances, but Maxima wouldn’t have it and became unhealthily obsessed with the Man of Steel. She figured if she couldn’t have him, then why not chalk it up to a win by trying to beat him ruthlessly. The two would fight multiple times, but she’d still join the Justice League, looking for a man.
The only time they’d hook up was the elseworlds story The Adventures of Superman Annual #3. Following Our Worlds At War, DC’s editorial kept Maxima far away from Superman; even to this day. DC is hoping you forget their history.
10 METAMORPHO AND CRIMSON FOX
While on the Justice League Europe team, Crimson Fox (Vivian) became exceptionally infatuated with Captain Atom. The radiation-based superhero wasn’t into her advances so she moved on to the superhero Rex Mason, Metapmorpho. After he had broken up with his ex-wife Sapphire, he was looking for someone to be with and hooked up with Vivian. Things were going well until her up old husband, who she was thought dead, showed up.
Almost immediately, Vivian dropped Rex so she could be together with her long lost, now turned villain, husband. In classic comic book fashion, the two characters faked their deaths so that they could be together. Vivian’s sister Constance would then fully embraced the identity of Crimson Fox, teaming up with Metamorpho so as to track down Vivian and find evidence that she wasn’t dead. It wasn’t the healthiest of relationships.
9 ZATANNA AND NIGHTWING
Recently, Batman and Zatanna’s youthful romance has been explored in flashbacks in Detective Comics. Nightwing, while he hasn’t wooed the powerful enchantress in comic book canon, did in the Young Justice TV show. Amidst introductions, Dick showed Zatanna around and flirts with her incessantly. Later, after Zatanna ends up moving to their headquarters to stand guard over Dr. Fate’s helmet, Dick sticks around far longer than he probably needed to.
Shortly thereafter, Zatanna kissed Nightwing on the cheek for his birthday, then a more passionate one on New Year’s Eve. Their relationship wasn’t delved into much from that point, but it’s clear that they dated, broke up, but were able to remain fast friends. All things considered, it would be interesting to see Dick and Zatanna have a relationship in the comics. The reason we don’t hear about this relationship anymore is up for grabs.
8 HAL JORDAN AND ARISIA RRAB
A founding member of the Justice League and one of the Green Lantern Corps’ most valued peacekeepers, Hal Jordan is held to a high standard by his friends and teammates. Considered by many to be the greatest Green Lantern roaming out in space, Hal’s done a good job at keeping the sky safe. As such, he has many admirers, one of which just happened to be the teenage alien Arisia Rrab.
She initially had a schoolgirl crush on Hal, which was cute, but then things took an inappropriate turn. Claiming to love Hal, Arisia used her power ring to age her body so they could be together. Hal, one of the most incorruptible heroes out there, totally digs it and dates the thirteen year old. It wouldn’t last, but it’s easy to see why the relationship fell on DC’s chopping block.
7 SUPERMAN AND BIG BARDA
Over the course of nearly a century, Superman’s had quite a few relationships. To no one’s surprise, a number of them have been rather bizarre. Superman’s most infamous hookup was back in Action Comics #593 when he nearly slept with Big Barda, Mister Miracle’s wife. At the time, Action Comics was a Superman team-up title to reintroduce him to the recently rebuilt DC Universe following "Crisis on Infinite Earths". In this case, Big Barda and Mister Miracle also appeared.
Long story short, there’s the villainous Sleez, exiled from Apokolips for being too depraved. Superman and Big Barda fall under this influence and begin to get down and dirty, but not before Mister Miracle breaks in through a window and shuts the whole thing down…and then there was a tentacle monster. Anyway, it wasn’t Superman’s proudest moment, and much to DC’s chagrin, the story lives in infamy.
6 THE FLASH AND POWER GIRL
Wally West and Power Girl found themselves as teammates on the Justice League Europe iteration of the team. Though they worked well as a unit, Power Girl came to loathe Wally. In The Flash #59, the tabloids printed rumors that Power Girl was pregnant with Flash’s baby. At this time in his life, Wally was known as a lady’s man who would flirt with anyone and everyone, so the news surprised no one. No one that is, except for an enraged Power Girl, a stunned Flash, and his girlfriend Connie.
Power Girl immediately rushed to confront Wally; appalled he didn’t do anything to fix the situation. Wally’s relatively carefree attitude only further infuriated Kara as she literally shook the Flash with rage. So even though they didn’t hook up, the rest of the world thought they did, hurting both heroes’ public image.
5 GUY GARDNER AND FIRE
Tora Olafsdotter was the best friend of Beatriz da Coasta; the two were pretty much inseparable. They both were on the Justice League and they both played an important part in the other’s life. After Ice tragically died, Fire was horribly distraught and barely functional. Guy Gardner was similarly heartbroken, having been in love with Ice, but still unable to make it work between them.
While Guy and Beatriz had lost a friend, they found new companionship in one another. Fire adopted a growing fondness for Guy, especially after realizing he missed Tora as much as she did. Yet their relationship grew into a soap opera, as it very much became a “will-they-won’t-they” situation. Turns out, their emotions were getting ahead of them, so the two decided to just stay friends.
4 MAXIMA AND AMAZING-MAN
Maxima maintained a proclivity to being especially aggressive in her search for men so as to reproduce. It’s likely this is the reason why Maxima, as seen in recent months, is kept far away from every male superhero, and is going through something of a makeover. After Superman, who was in love with Lois Lane, rejected her, Maxima tried to hook up with Captain Atom. Captain Atom also said no, which further peeved her. However, when she was a part of Extreme Justice, she found a potential mate in Amazing-Man.
Will Everett III was the grandson to the original Amazing-Man, and like his grandfather he possessed the ability to transform into the living embodiment of any material he touched and he also had high-level superhuman strength and durability. Even though Maxima was only using him as her personal rebound love interest, Amazing-Man didn’t care.
3 CAPTAIN ATOM AND CRIMSON FOX
Nathaniel Adam, otherwise known as Captain Atom, is about as straight-laced superhero as they come. Not one for shenanigans, he wasn’t particularly keen when the superheroine Crimson Fox entered his life. As it turned out, Crimson Fox was actually the identity for the twins Vivian and Constance D’Aramis; they both took up the name of Crimson Fox. Of the two, Vivian was exceptionally vivacious and found herself originally despising Captain Atom.
Boasting a fiery temperament, once her rage subsided, she ended up really digging Captain Atom. She even went so far as to slip a note into his bed, offering herself to him. Captain Atom was left confused for a time, as the two Crimson Foxes perplexed him and he couldn’t initially tell them apart. Furthermore, Vivian’s active pursuit of him when they were on the Justice League Europe team, freaked Captain Atom out and he rejected her completely.
2 OBSIDIAN AND NUKLON
Obsidian was among DC’s first gay characters and filled a void in DC Comics. After several failed relationships with women, (because he was gay) Obsidian got to questioning hmself. This personal crisis took place while he and Atom Smasher, who at the time was going by Nuklon, were both on the Justice League. Nuklon was the textbook example of a straight guy who didn’t really understand what it meant that Obsidian was gay.
Eventually, Obsidian comes out to his teammate, admitting he loves Nuklon. Taken completely unawares, Nuklon rebuffs his friend’s feelings, which hurts Obsidian’s feeling even more. At the end of the story arc, Nuklon apologizes to Obsidian for acting like a jerk, saying he loves him too, but in a strictly platonic way. While the two men might not have hooked up, it’s a relationship that in recent years has eluded the memories of many.
1 AQUAMAN AND WONDER WOMAN
One of Wonder Woman’s more relatively unknown romantic trysts wasn’t with Superman or Steve Trevor, but with Aquaman. The two are both royalty, so it makes sense they would find interest in the other. Nevertheless, the Lord of the Seven Seas is typically known for spending time with Mera, so canonically, there wasn’t a big window of opportunity for Diana and Arthur to get together.
1995's Aquaman Annual #1, told the story about their first meeting and how the sea god Triton attempted to capture Diana before Arthur intervened. The pair kissed before parting for years. The closest they ever came to consummation was in the JLA story arc "Queen of Fables", where the titular villain put Wonder Woman in a cursed sleep; a kiss from Aquaman awakened her. While the mere idea of Wonder Woman and Aquaman seems repugnant to DC, it’s a pairing that’d be fun to see.
Which of these hook-ups is the most scandalous to you? Let us know in the comments!