WARNING: The following article contains spoilers for "Nightmare Monkeys" and "True Heroes," the mid-season finale of Young Justice: Outsiders, streaming now on DC Universe.
With so many heroes and villains being introduced in Season 3 of Young Justice, it's no surprise the series is trying to avoid simply rehashing versions of these characters we've seen time and time again. Thus, a number of tweaks have been made to origin stories, where they're introduced on the timeline, and even their group affiliations.
In the mid-season finale, the show reveals some drastic changes a couple of heroes have made in their leap from comics to animation -- heroes who are shaping up be crucial figures in combating the metahuman trafficking ring overseen by Vandal Savage and Darkseid: Halo and Cyborg.
Young Justice's Halo Isn't Possessed by a Light Being
In 1983, Halo was introduced in The Brave and the Bold #200, a creation of Mike W. Barr and Jim Aparo. She came to life when a light-based alien entity, Aurakle, possessed the body of the dead Violet Harper, creating a new being with a blank memory. Batman would eventually recruit Halo for the Outsiders, where she'd form a daughter/mother bond with Katana, who nurtured Violet after she was used as a weapon in the war against Markovia. Over the years, Halo would drop in and out of the Outsiders lineup, with one of her most recent appearances of note coming when Alfred and Red Robin enlisted her for Batman Incorporated.
On Young Justice, Halo's body is that of a Quraci refugee called Gabrielle Daou, who was killed and then dumped in a mass grave in Markovia. There, she was possessed by a mysterious alien life-force, which gave her multiple abilities such as flight, force-fields, energy blasts and hologram projections. She's a vastly overpowered character, one who can heal herself from any wound, thus making her immortal, leaving us wondering who is inhabiting her body. We get the answer in Episode 12, "Nightmare Monkeys," where it's revealed she's possessed by the soul of a Mother Box.
Doctor Fate had previously described Halo as "an old soul in a young body," and the pieces come together when Superboy recalls seeing Apokolips' technology being dissected during the strike team's early-season mission in Markovia. Considering Halo's connection to Cyborg (more on that in a few), and her newfound power to create boom tubes out of thin air, the team realizes the soul of a dead Mother Box entered Gabrielle's body and has fully adapted to her human form -- one that eventually settled on the name Violet Harper, just like her comic book counterpart.
Young Justice's Cyborg's Origin Has a Major Difference
Recent depictions of Cyborg across DC's various comics, movies and animation have retconned his origin as the result of a Mother Box integration performed in a desert bid to save Victor Stone's life. Thus, Cyborg has been able to create boom tubes and interface with Apokolips' machines, which makes him a big asset in the fight against Darkseid.
Young Justice: Outsiders, however, flips the script by fusing him to a Father Box. When Victor berates his dad, Silas, at STAR Labs for not spending time together, a metahuman failsafe the Reach left behind creates an explosion that leaves Victor near-death, with a mangled, bloody body. Having recently begun studying a captured Father Box, a desperate Silas uses it to create a hybrid body for his son. But while Vic is saved, it comes at a deadly price. Sure, he's alive, but thanks to the Father Box, he now has a high-tech Jekyll and Hyde dynamic going on.
It's a horror-filled take on the character, as the Father Box corrupts Vic like a virus, triggering his new weaponry and stripping away his humanity to turn him into a mindless war machine. Cyborg is a living, breathing Father Box, and the only cure for him is the walking, talking Mother Box known as Halo. This creates an intriguing yin-yang chemistry, as they're literally polar opposites to each other. This results in a new dynamic for both characters, one that's homaging the source material, but is so different, even the biggest DC Comics fans likely have no idea where it's going to take us.
Young Justice: Outsiders is now available to stream on DC Universe. The series will return for the second part of Season 3 in June.