Happy Birthday Helena Wayne/Bertinelli and the Huntress

Forty-four years ago this month, Helena Wayne/(The first) heroic Huntress and the daughter of Bruce Wayne and Selina Wayne Nee Kyle of Earth-Two was created/born in 1977.

This makes next year her 45th anniversary…I wonder what DC might do for the Huntress. With the multiverse seemingly being completely restored, a meetup for the 4 Huntresses would be fun…then again, Properly introducing Helena Wayne into the Main DC universe would be fabulous.

Again Happy birthday, Huntress and Helena Wayne.

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Helena Wayne is my favorite Huntress. It would be amazing to have her back in regular comics.

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Huntress is one of my favorite characters.

Her mini series in 2011 is a great take on her, competent, dangerous, violent

It lead in 2012 to the series Worlds Finest with Huntress and Power Girl on main Earth.

Paul Levitz wrote both series

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I adore Helena Bertinelli - for me, Cry for Blood is her best origin, though I also enjoy Year One. Hoping for good things from Tamaki for her in Shadow of the Bat next month, since I enjoyed her stuff in the first arc of Tec!

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Huntress (either one) is one on my favorite characters, definitely Top 5. I hope to see another solo Huntress ongoing series! :purple_heart:

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I grew up on Ms Bertinelli, and she was a fave. Adult me was surprised to learn she was the second. I’ve so far only read the post-Flashpoint stuff, so don’t really know the classic version of Helena Wayne. Ought to remedy that, huh?

Who are the other two? Are you referring to things like pre-Crisis Wayne and post-World’s End Wayne as distinct characters, since they’re different Earth-2s? Or are you referencing Paula Brooks and the 60s O.G.R.E. assassin?

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What I liked about the 2011 version was she was the Earth 2 Robin.

She was trained by both Batman and Catwoman.

I think she said once
Her dad threw her out of a plane while over water as part of her training

The original Helena had no training as a crime fighter

She just watched Dick being trained and listening to her father’s stories.

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Just for anyone who might’ve missed them, we did a bunch of cool readings on Huntress for our BOP club:

Feel free to chime in, peeps!

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And the DC History Club covered both versions of Huntress

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Happy B-Day Helena!

:00_huntress1: :00_huntress2: :00_birds_of_prey:

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I was thinking Helena B (New Earth) Helena B New 52/rebirth Helena Wayne earth 2 and Helena Wayne earth-two all having some strang team-up.

I would love another Helena B. solo series however I would love to see it more
like Batman: The Wayne family Chronicles, but instead of a slice of life it’s a school drama/comedy focusing on her life as a teacher instead of her life as a vigilante. as you see her in her civilian guise fairly rarely the only one I really know that shows her in the classroom is Batman versus Predator vol. 2 and I think one episode of batman brave and the bold. however, I came into huntress fandom with Batgirl and the birds of prey so I have not read earlier worked yet. (and bought the Batman vs predator book cause i am a fan of both)

Personally, I would love to see (Helena Bertinelli) Huntress team up with the one member of the batfamily she never has teamed up with and only met briefly in Detective comics 1000 or 1027 (can’t remember which)…Red Hood. As Jason was dead when Helena Bertinelli came on the scene Perhaps in a limited series team-up. or an else world tale where Jason lived and how they may have interacted with each other. On the other hand, I ship Helena B and Jason together almost to the point of OTP for each other so I am biased on that. :grin:

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Yep, Mighty @Mae is correct (as always :smiley:)- lots of great reading selections here in the BOP club:

:birds_of_prey_club_oracle::00_huntress1: :00_birds_of_prey:

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That sounds like a great concept, though I don’t ship Jason and Helena (mostly because I think Jason’s about 19, and Helena’s in her late 20s, so the “generations” of vigilantes feels really wrong, similar to Batman dating Babs).

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I would love a Helena/Jason story. I agree that it doesn’t work as a romantic relationship, but for me it’s more that they’d see each other as “off limits” almost siblings. (Helena’s past with Dick, whom Jason sees as a brother, plus Jason’s love for Barbara, who Helena sees as a BFF if not neo sister.) However, I do I love the stories where tough guy Jason is second fiddle to a (usually much) stronger woman, be it Kori, Babs, Kara, etc… It’s such a great dynamic, and I’d love to see a version of that with modern post-Matron Helena. (Somehow, I think Midnighter is involved.)

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Helena Wayne has always been my favorite Huntress.She is one of the things I hated about Crisis on Infinite Earths wiping out Earth Two. I do love the others as well, though!

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I felt this deserves a dedicated reply.
Really i disagree with your assessment of the Helena Wayne of Earth-Two and Earth-2

This is completely false.

First off revealed in The Brave and the Bold 197 batman and Catwoman of earth two get married after Bruce has been Batman for 14 years, so he would have been batman for 16 by the time Helena was born in earth-two. Bruce goes into semi-retirement when Helena is born passing the main heroics to Dick Grayson (who does not become Nightwing in earth-two however he also does not become Batman, he remains Robin) so Bruce had already finished training Dick long before Helena was born. (Dick is seen at the wedding of Julie Maddison in the aforementioned issue) Yet Helena is still a skilled fighter by the time she becomes Huntress at age 19. Dick is actually out of the city working for the peace core when Helena first puts on her Huntress costume, which was based on her mother and father. (And something she likely made herself along with the equipment she used.) Yet she is also listed as having inherited both her parent’s sharp minds.

Next Earth-Two Helena Wayne was created back the comics code authority’s still had a lot of power, yet I would say She is one of DC’s first BA Boss Women since Wonder Women. (Catwoman was created in march of 1940 BEFORE Wonder Woman made her first appearance in October of 1941.) The act that put Batman of earth-two into a depression caused him to burn his batsuit (read the issue seen at the start of this post). the incident that broke the bat made the Huntress rise at the age of 19.

For her time (1977) Helena is one of the strongest female Heroines Created really barbara gordan or dare I say it Wonder Woman. Helena watched her father die in front of her a year later which just made her stronger. She also graduated from Harvard Law School a year later at 21. Helena was a Boss from the start. (God i hope I am using the term right here.) ya she did seek advice from earth one Batman, however, instead of having a male mentor, bruce points her to Batwoman (Kathy Kane) and Batgirl (Barbara Gordan) feeling they can give her better advice… let’s face it Batman knows nothing about being a female hero so they would have been able to give her better advice. So when she was finally truly dusted off in the new 52 she was already a strong character with a lot to live up to. And Helena Wayne of Earth-2 did just that.

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I was just saying what the Fact Sheet in the Huntress Trade states
About her training

I like the original Helena Wayne Huntress

Given the time period and Paul Levitz’s inexperience in writing
(Which he apologizes for in the trade forward)
She was a very strong character

We don’t disagree

What you were talking about was happened afterwards

I only referred to her training

The Huntress Fact Sheet

PERSONAL DATA
Alter Ego Helena Wayne
Occupation Lawyer
Marital Status Single
Known Relatives Thomas and Martha Wayne (grandparents, deceased) Bruce and Selina Kyle Wayne (parents, deceased), Karl Kyle (uncle)
Group Affiliation Justice Society of America, Infinity Inc.
Base of Operations Gotham City
First Appearance ALL STAR COMICS 69
Height 5’ 10" Weight 127 lbs.
Eyes Blue Hair Black

HISTORY
Helena Wayne was the only child of Bruce Wayne (Golden Age Batman) and Selina Kyle Wayne (Golden Age Catwoman) and grew up in the quiet household of Wayne Manor after her father’s semi retirement and her mother’s reformation. From birth Helena was trained to an extraordinary peak of physical and mental development, not because her parents had any special plans for her, but because they assumed such development was good for its own sake. At the same time she was exposed to the basics of crimefighting in stories her father told and watching the training he was giving to his ward, Dick Grayson (Golden Age Robin)

Helena completed law school at the age most people graduate from college. She was about to begin her career when two tragedies ohanged her life. Cernak, a former Confederate of Selina. Wayne surfaced and blackmailed Selina into one last crime. It was during this crime that Selina was killed by a bullet driven wild when Batman intervened. Bruce Wayne burned his costume at Selina’s grave and a few days later Helena swore an oath of vengence and became the Huntress.

The Huntress captured Cernak and unknow to her father, she embarked on a heroic career with her father’s comrades in the Justice Society of America (JSA.) After Batman donned his costume one last time, and laid down his life to save Gotham from a super powered criminal, the Huntress, with the JSA, avenged Batman’s death.

Now alone, the Huntress became Gotham’s principal guardian and devoted far more energy to her secret identity than to her conventional career as a lawyer. Helena worked for Cranston Grayson and Wayne, a public interest firm that counted Dick Grayson as a partner (although an inactive one). She later worked as a police liason officer with the district attorney. Coincidentally Gotham DA Harry Sims was her lover.

POWERS AND WEAPONS
An Olympic level athlete , the Huntress is a master in many forms of physical combat, armed and unarmed. And is a skilled criminologist She also has an unusual ability to pick locks and other criminal techniques .

The weapons in her arsenal include a cross bow, dagger, and various items in her utilty bag or belt. Like her father, she has never used a gun.

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When Paul Levitz wrote the Huntress mini series in 2011, he had decades of writing experience plus the audience allowed for more mature themes

Not so
When he first started writing Huntress

The Forward To the Helena Wayne Huntress Trade:

Introduction by Paul Levitz

How about two introductions instead of one?

First, the contextual one:

In the seventies, comic fans turned professional had become, for the first time’ the dominant force in steering the destinies of their favorite characters. Ar DC Comics, that resulted in a lot of stories that experimented with continuity and the “Muitiverse” of worlds built up by that time: Earth-1 (where the heroes of the Silver Age had their adventures), Earth-2 (the Golden Age DC heroes), Earth-3 (where the super-villains ruled), Earth-S (with Captain Marvel and the Fawoett characrers), Eorth-X (the Quality heroes) and even Earth-Prime (where heroes such as Julie Schwartz who along with Gardner Fox started this whole madness). Many of these stories were amazing explorations of alternate histories, opening up the imaginations of later generations to such an extent that in recent years Scientific America had a cover pay homage to the way the Schwartz titles depicted multiple Earths, and a horde of science fiction writers have made alternate history almost a separate genre. (many were, to be kind, a wee bit more self-indulgent.)

The storles in this book came about when DC relaunched All-Star Comic, the traditional home of the Justice Society, the orginal Super-Team from tne 1940s. Gerry Conway instigated wrote and edited the relaunch but left after a few issues to briefly become editor in chief of Marvel. He left behind a style for the book, a cast of characters and a young assistant editor passionate about the JSA, would try to fill his more experienced shoes. The young man would take over as writer (with experienced vet Joe Orlando as editor), and proceeds to add still more charocrers to the series, largely because they were parts of the DC Golden Age mythology that he loved, ond wanted to share with the readers.

Within a year, the young writer was joined by two young artists who would both go on fo have long and accomplished careers in the field. Joe Staton as penciler and Bob Layton as inker. Both were interested in the characters and prone to offer their own story suggesions as well. Layton argued for an Eath-2 Batgirl, Staton supported adding another woman to the team. Longtime colorist and then proofreader Anihony Tollin nudged the writer at a party and somehow the Hunress emerged. Sraton added a sketch of the visual, and off she went into action,

The stories in this volume were written over the four years that followed. After making a cameo in AIl Star Comics #69. Her origin was featured in DC Super Stars i#17. and then the other short stories were serialized first in an anthology entitled Batman Family (don’t ask) and then as backups in Wonder Woman. The character gained a following and sustained her momentum inro the mid-1980s, when Crisis on Infinite Earths mode her origin impossible as the Multiverse collapsed and her then-series writer Joey Calvalieri shifted her to being a crime lord’s daughter instead.

Now, the personal one

When you read these stories. please remember that I began writing them when I was 20. Joe Orlando taught me many things over our years of friendship but the wisest was that readers can sense a storyteller’s sincerity (or lack of) and forgive many sins of craft on a sincere work. That certainly seemed to be true three decades ago when these stories came out. I had much more sincerity than craft, yet people seemed to enjoy the work, The Huntress became my most lasting contribution fo the DC Universe, and remains a favored child. I write these words with Joe Staton’s painting of her staring down at me (a house warming gift for my first solo apartment, long ago), and the page of Helena swearing her oath still hangs on the wall opposite

I’ve learned many things in the decades since I wish I knew when I wrote these stories: craft skills of writing, knowledge of human behavior, understanding of how men and women differ ( I simplified my approach in those early days by assuming that being a superhero was so much different from ordinary humanity than the mere differences that gender offered), and more. And I even had a daughter of my own,’ whose now is grown and gone to work for a real-world group that advocates in the public interest. But I also learned that Joe was right about sincerity and its importance and I hope you still can feel that youthful passion as you read these stones.

Welcome Back

Paul Levitz
October 2006

Paul Levitz was DC’s youngest editor and contributed to the company as a writer, editor, and, ultimately, as its president and publisher

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Age of the hero’s in all American comics is interesting and hard as steel to pin down. Its something I have way overthought and depends on the cannon we are in. in the main current cannon age-wise I view Jason as around 25 and would be around 20 in the Wayne Family Chronicles (as Damian is 14 current cannon but 9 in WFC) as he has calmed down a lot and is not all kill them all anymore. A male human’s brain finishes developing at age 25 so him being 25 makes sense to me as he only really recently switched to using rubber bullets and now no longer uses guns. I View Dick and Babs as around 27-30 as dick is stated as being in his mid 20’s in 2018. I also prefer to judge who is older via publication date and how old they were meant to be in their original publication date if they were created in the same year like Dick Grayson and Selina Kyle. Dick was around 8-12 in his original appearance well Selina was fully grown. Given batman was created in 1939 I view Bruce as a year older than Selina.

I feel Helena is the youngest member of the Birds of Prey…because she is the youngest member of the Birds of Prey as being created in 1989 even if you go by Helena Wayne’s age she is still the youngest member. Dinah is the oldest as the original black canary was created in 1947 (the second was admittedly 1969 but Dinah has always been portrayed as the eldest) which is why she is the eldest member. Babs 1967. I view Catwoman as being a bit older than Dinah.

However well Helena Bertinelli was created in 1989…Jason todd was originally created in 1983. and reintroduced in 1987. and interestingly Nightwing (as Dick Grayson) was not introduced till 1984. I just learned this fact and well double-check the dates and I find it funny that Jason Todd is older than Nightwing as Dick Grayson. Jason was twelve when bruce takes him in, if you have him age in real-time that would put his death in 88 at him being 17 making him 18 in 89 when huntress first appears as his six months training and six months of death would cancel each other out. if Helena B originally took the mantle of huntress at the same age Helena Wayne first did the cowl that would make her 19 in Huntress volume 1 issue one. after that way, too many recons and reboots have happened to figure it out anyone age. I just spent the last several hours trying and got a headache. (i also don’t feel like running this through Grammarly sorry)

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Helena Wayne is by far my favorite version and I enjoyed her Earth 2 adventures in All-Star and the Wonder Woman backups.

My second favorite is the Golden Age version, Paula Brooks.

She was not happy about Helena taking up the name.

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