We pick up our history lesson of Power Girl in the middle of the first decade of the new century. Our girl has had her original origin reinstated, thanks to 2005’s Infinite Crisis. But, that doesn’t mean things have simplified for Karen Starr. At all. If you don’t know what I’m talking about, you can always revisit part 1 and part 2.
To really rattle things up for Power Girl (PG), DC Comics brought Earth-22’s Superman (Earth 22, btw, is the universe in which Alex Ross/Mark Waid’s four issue 1996 mini-series, Kingdom Come, takes place) to Power Girl’s doorstep in issue #9 of Justice Society Vol 3. (November 2007). Why does his appearance rattle Power Girl so? Because Kingdom Come’s Superman reminds her a bit too keenly of her cousin Kal-L (the Superman from Earth Two, I’m sure you’ll recall).
Earth 22 Superman and Power Girl eventually come to accept each other as family. But, all does not end well there. Because DC Comics followed up the seven issue mini series, Infinite Crisis, by setting the DCU ahead a year, then recalling the events of that year with the mind-numbingly confusing weekly comic series, 52. What happened during all this is a bit difficult to explain in 20 word or less. Let’s just say a new multiverse is created, which created conflict between multiple Power Girls from multiple universes that exist/don’t exist/may exist.
Suffice it to say, in the end, all the Power Girls end up where they belong.
DC Comics followed 52 up with 2008’s Final Crisis written by Grant Morrison. Final Crisis saw Power Girl with a limited role; briefly taking on Darkseid’s forces as they (once again) try to take over the Earth. PG, though, would not be under- utilized for long…getting her own on-going series in 2009, Power Girl Vol 2. Written by Jimmy Pamiotti and Justin Gray and penciled by Amanda Conner, issue #1 of the series was launched in July of that year. The first story arc had Power Girl using her Karen Starr secret identity and battling the Ultra-Humanite (as Power Girl, not Karen Starr). PG would later go on to found a team of teenaged super-heroes, the JSA All-Stars, with the help of Magog. Yes…Magog from Kingdom Come.
The start of the second decade of the new century brought Power Girl under the control of Starheart (a cosmic entity that gave Green Lanterns Alan Scott and Jade their powers) in 2010’s Brightest Day storyline. Running concurrently with Brightest Day was Justice League: Generation Lost, in which Power Girl and the heroes from Justice League International go on a manhunt to find the killer of the original Blue Beetle (Ted Kord), Maxwell Lord. Using a bit of trickery, Maxwell Lord conveniently erases himself from everyone’s memory after the crime. But, with the help of Booster Gold, PG manages to find the existence of Maxwell Lord, and jocularity ensues.
Whew…hang in there. We’re almost done.
All of which brings us to 2011’s relaunch (don’t call it a re-boot), the New52. In this new iteration of the DCU, Power Girl hailed from Earth 2 originally as their Supergirl. But now, donning the Power Girl persona, was stuck on Prime Earth due to an “interdimensional vortex” created during Darkseid’s siege of Earth 2.
In the opening months of the New52, Power Girl was first seen in Mister Terrific’s self titled series which began in September 2011. In it, she once again played Karen Starr, head of Starr Enterprises. The company’s mission? Looking for ways to get Power Girl and her partner from Earth 2, Helena Wayne (the Huntress), back to their proper home.
Mister Terrific wouldn’t last very long, though. And in May of 2012, Power Girl and the Huntress would get their own title, Worlds’ Finest (a play on words from the classic Superman/Batman title: World’s Finest). Through the events of DC Comic’s weekly title, Earth 2: World’s End, Power Girl and Huntress make it back to Earth 2. At which point the focus of Worlds’ Finest shifted to Superman/Batman.
In the pages of Earth 2: World’s End, Power Girl (along with a small squad of Earth 2 heroes) fought against Apokolips and Darkseid’s invading forces as he destroyed Earth 2. Through the events of Earth’s End, Convergence and a bit of alchemy, Power Girl managed to survive Earth 2’s cataclysm at the hands of Darkseid.
Power Girl now lives on a new planet along with the few survivors of the war with Apokolips in Earth 2: Society. Gone is her infamous “boob window”, replaced with Earth 2’s Superman “S” shield. What the future holds for Power Girl is unfolding right now in the pages of Earth 2: Society. You should be checking it out.
Oh…and she’s also starring in a quasi-out of continuity team up book with Harley Quinn. Yea…Harley Quinn. Who’d a thunk it? But, believe you me, it works.
And…there you have it. A brief and wondrous history of Power Girl. Now, close your books. Cause it’s time for a quiz…