BLACK CANARY : The Blonde Bombshell

"Don't get me wrong. We're not freaks. We weren't born different. But we became different the moment we stepped into the hero role. Now we have to live up to it... or die trying." --Dinah Laurel Lance
Know Your CBM Character - BLACK CANARY. Who she is? What are her powers and abilities? Who played her in live media.

Features Opinion

Black Canary is Dinah Lance (I hoped it was that easy to say who Black Canary is but this being comics it is a bit more complicated than that). Dinah Lance is indeed Black Canary but Dinah Lance is not a single person. There are two Dinah Lances, Dinah Drake Lance and Dinah Laurel Lance, they are mother and daughter (Again, it is not as simple as that). Though there are two characters now but they started as one character. In one of my features I talked about Earth 1 and Earth 2 continuities (scan some of my previous articles about this topic), Black Canary started out in 1947 which was part of comicbook's Golden Age, most of the DC Comic characters who started out in this era will later end up in Earth 2. A few years after this time, interests in superheroes waned but in the 1960's there was a revival, which marked the Silver Age of comicbook heroes. Golden Age heroes find themselves aged and adventuring in Earth 2, but it seemed like our Black Canary did not get the memo about aging and maintained her age. Black Canary then travelled to Earth 1 where she finds other young revamped heroes like the new Green Lantern - Hal Jordan replacing Alan Scott and the New Flash - Barry Allen replacing Jay Garrick. The discrepancy on her age still caused a lot of problem, actually by this time DC is having problems with their timelines by having several characters bearing the same name running around in several earths, having different adventures. Enters Crisis on Infinite Earths, a giant reboot button on the whole DC Universe, this was their device to iron out problems on their continuities by having them all meshed in one coherent continuity. The effect of this event to our Black Canary is the Golden Age Black Canary became the mother of the Silver Age Black Canary. Thus, the Black Canary is/are Dinah Lance, a martial arts expert with a deafening Canary Cry.

BLACK CANARY is a DC Comics superheroine created by writer Robert Kanigher and artist Carmine Infantino, the character first appeared in Flash Comics #86 (August 1947). In the 1980s, the character's history was rewritten to make her two entities: Dinah Drake, who took part in Golden Age adventures and married Gotham City detective Larry Lance, and their daughter Dinah Laurel Lance, who has appeared in modern stories and joined the Justice League.

First appearance
1947: first appeared as a supporting character in the Johnny Thunder feature of the Flash Comics anthology. Initially, she seemed to be a villain; Johnny Thunder was instantly infatuated with her and was reproached for this by his Thunderbolt. However, she was in fact infiltrating a criminal gang, a modus operandi she would follow throughout her career.In her debut appearance her costume consisted of a blond wig, fishnet stockings, pirate boots, bustier, an unbuttoned jacket and a domino mask.

Own Feature
1948: BLACK CANARY proved to be popular that in Flash Comics #92, she replaced Johnny Thunder's feature. The new series fleshed out BLACK CANARY's backstory; in her real identity, Dinah Drake was a black-haired florist whose romantic interest was Larry Lance, a detective on the Gotham City Police Department.She still wears the same costume sans the domino mask.

Silver Age
1963: BLACK CANARY along with her teammates in the Justice Society were revived in the Silver Age. She continues to wear the costume she's worn until the 50s.

True Origin
1983: By this time the origin of the Black Canaries are revealed. We have now the daughter as the active BLACK CANARY (though she had already been operating for a long time).

Karate Kid Canary
1985: BLACK CANARY traded her sexy revealing outfit for something more modest and a headband (somebody is watching too much Karate Kid, not the one with the spawn of Will Smith, if you don't know what I meant, then you're too young).

A lot of Costume Changes
Late 80s and most of the 90s BLACK CANARY went thru a whole lot of warddrobe changes. Here are some examples.

with her natural hair color:

Bird of Prey
As an operative for this outfit, she wore several costumes and then apparently returned to her classic fishnet look.

Wedding Canary
Here's the gown she wore when she got married to Green Arrow (I felt like it deserves to be here).

Danuta Wesley
1979: the character appeared in two television specials Legends of the Superheroes, where she was portrayed by Danuta Wesley.

Lori Loughlin
2002: A character named Carolyn Lance appeared on the short-lived WB television series Birds of Prey, portrayed by Lori Loughlin. The character was the estranged biological mother of one of the show's primary characters Dinah Redmond.

Rachel Skarsten
When Birds of Prey was first announced, the producers indicated that the teenaged Dinah Redmond would be a reimagined BLACK CANARY (with early publicity material referring to her directly by that name).

Alaina Huffman
The television series Smallville, featured Dinah Lance as a recurring character from season 7 to season 10. Her mother, Dinah Drake, the original BLACK CANARY, appears in a painting at the Justice Society of America's brownstone, identifying her as one of the team's original members.

Note: Due to the nature of comicbooks being an on-going tale, the character's powers along with his appearance, is in a constant state of flux.

Canary Cry: possesses a metagene that gives her a potent sonic attack, able to damage and stun foes or objects, to the point of shattering metal. Possesses a incredible degree of control over her vocal cords.

Martial Arts Master: She is one of the most skilled martial artists on the planet. She has trained in the art of Boxing, Muay Thai, Capoeira, Krav Maga, Hapkaido, Dragon Style Kung Fu and pressure point fighting. Other styles she's shown skill in include Savate, Judo, Aikido, Jujutsu, Wing Chun, and Tae Kwon Do. She's a novice in Amazonian style of Martial Arts.

Master Tactician and Strategist: Dinah is also considered a strong leader and strategic thinker.

Harmonica Player: Though not a useful skill in battle, it is a skill nonetheless that she uses to strengthen her breathing and vocal cords. This is a form of training for her Canary Cry.

Master Acrobat

Master Detective

Expert Motorcyclist

sources: : : : : : : : :

This is the 28th article in my Know Your CBM Character series. Any requests and suggestions for an article for this series write it down in the comment section BELOW.

Message to the CBM community:To those who are making requests, check first [here] because I might have done an article on the character already. If I have not please be patient, I will get on it as soon as possible (but consider the fact that I spend hours writing one of these articles). Try to limit your request to characters that already have been adapted to live media, so that the feature will at least be relevant to the site – Comic Book Movie(though I include TV characters). Characters in Manga or Anime’, I am not particularly familiar of, I am not discounting these characters but it will probably take some time before I write a feature on them because I have to read up on these characters. Thank you for reading these articles! If there are errors on the feature article above, blame it on my age, humanity and ignorance. Just be sure to check the comment section for the corrections, any error I made will surely be pointed out and corrected by much bigger geeks (because there will always be a bigger geek out there). -This has been PollMaster inviting you to the geekside. MABUHAY CBM and Godspeed!
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