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> > > Did they explain the change, or was he just retconned?
> > >
> > IIRC He underwent a physical rebirth ceremony that altered his physique.
> > Peter Svensson
> The physical rebirth also strengthed his telepathic third eye and made him a PHYSICAL powerhouse. He wasn't QUITE Superman-level, but in his next storyline, was more than a match for most of the Justice League (admittedly, it WAS the Joke League of America, but it had Big Barda and Martian Manhunter on the team).
His rebirth in the Flames of Py'tar happened in time for him to fight the Detroit League, actually... and he pretty well owned them. INCLUDING the Batman. When Bruce jumped him, Despero broke both of his arms and tossed him away like a pile of garbage. One of the very few moments in that run that'll really suck you in. Certainly beat French-Canadian trapper Amazo...