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Fanboy Supreme




I hate to see these old-school Golden Age characters go, but sheesh, Ma appeared to be no spring chicken even in her first appearances, and that was 65 years ago. Even accepting the notion that she was pretty young in those earlier appearances (and was just a sturdy Rosie-the-Riveter type), she’s surely at least 90, isn’t she?

I’d like to see a quick reference about her getting exposed to the old chronal energy hoo-hah sometime in the 1940s, and that’s how she appears to be 60-something today.


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Dr. Bob




> I hate to see these old-school Golden Age characters go, but sheesh, Ma appeared to be no spring chicken even in her first appearances, and that was 65 years ago. Even accepting the notion that she was pretty young in those earlier appearances (and was just a sturdy Rosie-the-Riveter type), she’s surely at least 90, isn’t she? > > I’d like to see a quick reference about her getting exposed to the old chronal energy hoo-hah sometime in the 1940s, and that’s how she appears to be 60-something today. Logically (to me at least) she's 100-plus, as even in the early 40s I can't imagine any neighborhood lady being called "Ma" before a certain age (at least 40). This is one of the problems of non-Karkull JSAers and related characters still being around.


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Fanboy Supreme




> > I hate to see these old-school Golden Age characters go, but sheesh, Ma appeared to be no spring chicken even in her first appearances, and that was 65 years ago. Even accepting the notion that she was pretty young in those earlier appearances (and was just a sturdy Rosie-the-Riveter type), she’s surely at least 90, isn’t she? > > I’d like to see a quick reference about her getting exposed to the old chronal energy hoo-hah sometime in the 1940s, and that’s how she appears to be 60-something today. Logically (to me at least) she's 100-plus, as even in the early 40s I can't imagine any neighborhood lady being called "Ma" before a certain age (at least 40). This is one of the problems of non-Karkull JSAers and related characters still being around.

DC has thinned the herd tremendously the past few years. One can always assume that the retcon punch affected who was exposed to the Karkull energy, but the fact remains that Jay and Alan and Ted are at least in their mid to late 80s.


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Blue Beetle




> DC has thinned the herd tremendously the past few years. One can always assume that the retcon punch affected who was exposed to the Karkull energy, but the fact remains that Jay and Alan and Ted are at least in their mid to late 80s.


Which makes no sense at all in the case of Ted, who has no powers.

Although... couldn't Alan slow people's aging with his ring?

Frankly, I don't much care what the explanation is. I would just like to be given one. Ted with no powers beating up crooks while in his 80's is untenable. Something must have happened to keep him physically vital. DC should pick an idea they like and reveal it on the comic book page.



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Fanboy Supreme




> > DC has thinned the herd tremendously the past few years. One can always assume that the retcon punch affected who was exposed to the Karkull energy, but the fact remains that Jay and Alan and Ted are at least in their mid to late 80s.
>
>
> Which makes no sense at all in the case of Ted, who has no powers.
>
> Although... couldn't Alan slow people's aging with his ring?
>
> Frankly, I don't much care what the explanation is. I would just like to be given one. Ted with no powers beating up crooks while in his 80's is untenable. Something must have happened to keep him physically vital. DC should pick an idea they like and reveal it on the comic book page.
>
Well, there's Ian Karkull, for one:

"The JSA confronted Karkull, blasting him with their combined powers. The forces exceeded Karkull's ability to contain the ancient shadows, when exploded out of him, seemingly tearing him apart. The radiation of the shadows' departure bathed the assembled heroes, apparently extendeding their lives and affecting them in other, unknown ways." (All-Star Squadron Annual #3)

Wildcat is also young because of his "nine lives." Jay has supposedly been affected by the Speed Force (and at one point, some sort of suspended animation thing which I think has been retconned out). Alan may be young just because of the ring and the Starheart power.


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Johnny Sarcastic




> Wildcat is also young because of his "nine lives." Jay has supposedly been affected by the Speed Force (and at one point, some sort of suspended animation thing which I think has been retconned out). Alan may be young just because of the ring and the Starheart power.

For these three fellows, that's exactly what I've believed has been the 'official' explaination in recent DC continuity. I have only one thing to add for Jay, however [OLD SPOILERS]:





Forgive the vague summary, but in Green Lantern / Flash: Faster Friends, it was revealed that Jay was dying (I can't remember why, but I think Alien X had something to do with it). Anyway, it was revealed last-minute as a portal of some sort opened. Alan realised what was happening to Jay, and wanted to help by sharing some of the Starheart. Jay refused, because he didn't know what it would do to Alan. Jay made a break for the portal, running at super-speed, and in a very cool moment Alan willed himself to move so fast that they entered the portal at the same time. On the other side, it turned out Jay recieved a piece of Alan's Starheart, making him all better and presumably as longlived as Alan.


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Blue Beetle




> > Frankly, I don't much care what the explanation is. I would just like to be given one. Ted with no powers beating up crooks while in his 80's is untenable. Something must have happened to keep him physically vital. DC should pick an idea they like and reveal it on the comic book page.
> >
> Well, there's Ian Karkull, for one:
>
> "The JSA confronted Karkull, blasting him with their combined powers. The forces exceeded Karkull's ability to contain the ancient shadows, when exploded out of him, seemingly tearing him apart. The radiation of the shadows' departure bathed the assembled heroes, apparently extendeding their lives and affecting them in other, unknown ways." (All-Star Squadron Annual #3)


All-Star Squadron was pre-Crisis, wasn't it? Is it still in continuity?


> Wildcat is also young because of his "nine lives." Jay has supposedly been affected by the Speed Force (and at one point, some sort of suspended animation thing which I think has been retconned out). Alan may be young just because of the ring and the Starheart power.


Wow - Wildcat has nine lives? I didn't know that! How many are left?




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Zazu




> > > Frankly, I don't much care what the explanation is. I would just like to be given one. Ted with no powers beating up crooks while in his 80's is untenable. Something must have happened to keep him physically vital. DC should pick an idea they like and reveal it on the comic book page.
> > >
> > Well, there's Ian Karkull, for one:
> >
> > "The JSA confronted Karkull, blasting him with their combined powers. The forces exceeded Karkull's ability to contain the ancient shadows, when exploded out of him, seemingly tearing him apart. The radiation of the shadows' departure bathed the assembled heroes, apparently extendeding their lives and affecting them in other, unknown ways." (All-Star Squadron Annual #3)
>
>
> All-Star Squadron was pre-Crisis, wasn't it? Is it still in continuity?

Quite a bit is still in continuity, just not the multiple earths thing. They replaced the Earth 2 heroes like Superman, Batman, WW, GA, Aquaman, etc with new heroes like Iron Munro, Fury I, Flying Fox, etc. The Karkull story is still in effect.
>
>
> > Wildcat is also young because of his "nine lives." Jay has supposedly been affected by the Speed Force (and at one point, some sort of suspended animation thing which I think has been retconned out). Alan may be young just because of the ring and the Starheart power.
>
>
> Wow - Wildcat has nine lives? I didn't know that! How many are left?
>
It was "revealed" (i.e. retconned) in GJ's first JSA run when the new Crimson Avenger showed up. Ted had to sacrifice his remaining lives in an arc of JSA Classified and became a "normal" human again.


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Superman's Pal




> > > > Frankly, I don't much care what the explanation is. I would just like to be given one. Ted with no powers beating up crooks while in his 80's is untenable. Something must have happened to keep him physically vital. DC should pick an idea they like and reveal it on the comic book page.
> > > >
> > > Well, there's Ian Karkull, for one:
> > >
> > > "The JSA confronted Karkull, blasting him with their combined powers. The forces exceeded Karkull's ability to contain the ancient shadows, when exploded out of him, seemingly tearing him apart. The radiation of the shadows' departure bathed the assembled heroes, apparently extendeding their lives and affecting them in other, unknown ways." (All-Star Squadron Annual #3)
> >
> > All-Star Squadron was pre-Crisis, wasn't it? Is it still in continuity?
>
> Quite a bit is still in continuity, just not the multiple earths thing. They replaced the Earth 2 heroes like Superman, Batman, WW, GA, Aquaman, etc with new heroes like Iron Munro, Fury I, Flying Fox, etc. The Karkull story is still in effect.

Was that explicitly stated? I'm trying to remember a Post-Crisis telling of the Karkull story and who was there. Several JSAers were also in limbo fighting Ragnarok for a few years and probably didn't age.

As for the originals, Jay, Alan, Ted, Rex, and Carter. Jay was said to be young due to the Speed Force, but that didn't really explain Joan's equal longevity. I suppose the answer there is that Jay had his Karkull energy stripped by Extant and Joan didn't. Jay also lost the Speed Force when Bart internalized it and supposedly aged or "slowed down" but he's probably got it back now. Alan was kept young by the Starheart which he had internalized ... that is until it was taken from him and he got old again. He got the Starheart back but he didn't internalize it this time so what does that mean? Ted's nine lives helped for a while but he's lost them all he's no longer a metahuman, he's normal, does that mean he's back to his proper age? Rex jumped over a few years thanks to Zero Hour and its retcon, does he still have his Karkull energy? Carter's merger with Katar gave him a younger body.





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Zazu




> > > > > Frankly, I don't much care what the explanation is. I would just like to be given one. Ted with no powers beating up crooks while in his 80's is untenable. Something must have happened to keep him physically vital. DC should pick an idea they like and reveal it on the comic book page.
> > > > >
> > > > Well, there's Ian Karkull, for one:
> > > >
> > > > "The JSA confronted Karkull, blasting him with their combined powers. The forces exceeded Karkull's ability to contain the ancient shadows, when exploded out of him, seemingly tearing him apart. The radiation of the shadows' departure bathed the assembled heroes, apparently extendeding their lives and affecting them in other, unknown ways." (All-Star Squadron Annual #3)
> > >
> > > All-Star Squadron was pre-Crisis, wasn't it? Is it still in continuity?
> >
> > Quite a bit is still in continuity, just not the multiple earths thing. They replaced the Earth 2 heroes like Superman, Batman, WW, GA, Aquaman, etc with new heroes like Iron Munro, Fury I, Flying Fox, etc. The Karkull story is still in effect.
>
> Was that explicitly stated? I'm trying to remember a Post-Crisis telling of the Karkull story and who was there. Several JSAers were also in limbo fighting Ragnarok for a few years and probably didn't age.

Here's a synopsis of (I think) Karkull's last appearance:

DARKNESS FALLS

Part 1: Pat Dugan (a.k.a. S.T.R.I.P.E.) becomes the JSA's team mechanic, unveiling their new aircraft, the Steel Eagle. The JSA is called to Milwaukee, Wisconsin, where Obsidian, under the domination of Ian Karkull, has blacked out the entire city. Karkull reveals that he wants to reclaim the temporal energy he lost to the JSA in 1941. The JSA is routed by Obsidian and Karkull's powers, but the new Dr. Mid-Nite steps in to help. NOTES: The JSA was imbued with Karkull's temporal energy on June 28, 1941, as shown in All-Star Squadron Annual #3; it granted them extended longevity. S.T.R.I.P.E. stands for "Special Tactics Robotic Integrated Power Enhancer." Guest app: Jade.



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DMOS




> > > > Frankly, I don't much care what the explanation is. I would just like to be given one. Ted with no powers beating up crooks while in his 80's is untenable. Something must have happened to keep him physically vital. DC should pick an idea they like and reveal it on the comic book page.
> > > >
> > > Well, there's Ian Karkull, for one:
> > >
> > > "The JSA confronted Karkull, blasting him with their combined powers. The forces exceeded Karkull's ability to contain the ancient shadows, when exploded out of him, seemingly tearing him apart. The radiation of the shadows' departure bathed the assembled heroes, apparently extendeding their lives and affecting them in other, unknown ways." (All-Star Squadron Annual #3)
> >
> >
> > All-Star Squadron was pre-Crisis, wasn't it? Is it still in continuity?
>
> Quite a bit is still in continuity, just not the multiple earths thing. They replaced the Earth 2 heroes like Superman, Batman, WW, GA, Aquaman, etc with new heroes like Iron Munro, Fury I, Flying Fox, etc. The Karkull story is still in effect.
> >
> >
> > > Wildcat is also young because of his "nine lives." Jay has supposedly been affected by the Speed Force (and at one point, some sort of suspended animation thing which I think has been retconned out). Alan may be young just because of the ring and the Starheart power.
> >
> >
> > Wow - Wildcat has nine lives? I didn't know that! How many are left?
> >
> It was "revealed" (i.e. retconned) in GJ's first JSA run when the new Crimson Avenger showed up. Ted had to sacrifice his remaining lives in an arc of JSA Classified and became a "normal" human again.

The nine lives thing wasn't a Johns creation. Morrison came up with that in the JLA "Crisis Times Five" story when Wildcat died fighting that rogue genie. Johns just gave a backstory to where it actually came from, since Morrison never did.


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Ed Love




> > > > Well, there's Ian Karkull, for one:
> > > >
> > > > "The JSA confronted Karkull, blasting him with their combined powers. The forces exceeded Karkull's ability to contain the ancient shadows, when exploded out of him, seemingly tearing him apart. The radiation of the shadows' departure bathed the assembled heroes, apparently extendeding their lives and affecting them in other, unknown ways." (All-Star Squadron Annual #3)
> > >
> Was that explicitly stated? I'm trying to remember a Post-Crisis telling of the Karkull story and who was there. Several JSAers were also in limbo fighting Ragnarok for a few years and probably didn't age.
>
Well, it wouldn't explain Wildcat's longevity. He's not part of the original story unless he & Mr. Terrific were subbed in at a later date.

> As for the originals, Jay, Alan, Ted, Rex, and Carter. Jay was said to be young due to the Speed Force, but that didn't really explain Joan's equal longevity. I suppose the answer there is that Jay had his Karkull energy stripped by Extant and Joan didn't. Jay also lost the Speed Force when Bart internalized it and supposedly aged or "slowed down" but he's probably got it back now. Alan was kept young by the Starheart which he had internalized ... that is until it was taken from him and he got old again. He got the Starheart back but he didn't internalize it this time so what does that mean? Ted's nine lives helped for a while but he's lost them all he's no longer a metahuman, he's normal, does that mean he's back to his proper age? Rex jumped over a few years thanks to Zero Hour and its retcon, does he still have his Karkull energy? Carter's merger with Katar gave him a younger body.
>
It was stated in the Parobeck series that all of the JSA looked a bit younger and felt even younger than their natural ages from their time fighting Ragnarok and being bonded with the Norse gods. But they didn't all retain the same amount. A running theme was that the Atom was feared they could start aging quickly to their more natural ages.

My own take is what happened in the battle with Extant, his removing their energies wasn't necessarily permanent as half the team did eventually recover.


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little kon-el




I always took Karkull's energy to be like radiation, so that when he exploded, he irradiated most of the East Coast and possibly parts of the midwest with his radiation that drifted due to a North Westerly breeze. That way, many people in the US look much younger than they actually are due to Karkull's radiation, but the JSA took the brunt of it, so they're the ones who benefit the most from the radiation.

- l.k.


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Dr. Bob




Hmmm. I like this one. I'd modify it a bit so that the surrounding countryside got only a tiny dose but in keeping with the radiation poisoning analogy the JSAers severely "contaminated" those they came into contact with frequently, so the wives, girlfriends, sidekicks and friends, etc. received the longevity benefit as well.


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Superman's Pal




> I always took Karkull's energy to be like radiation, so that when he exploded, he irradiated most of the East Coast and possibly parts of the midwest with his radiation that drifted due to a North Westerly breeze. That way, many people in the US look much younger than they actually are due to Karkull's radiation, but the JSA took the brunt of it, so they're the ones who benefit the most from the radiation.

How much life energy do you reckon Karkull had in him anyway? Out of the 8 or 10 future Presidents he was targeting for death, he only succeeded in killing one. Did that give him one man's potential life energy or millions, based on all the people's lives that President would touch? I always thought he'd only absorbed about one man's life energy. If that man had lived another 80 years then that's how many extra years were distributed amongst the JSA, each of 'em got an extra decade or so. I guess it must have been more than that but I never thought it would be enough to blanket the East Coast. But you do raise an interesting question, maybe there was more potential life energy there than I considered.





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