DC Heroes Transformed! Part II Transformations Organized by Type


Part I looked at DC Transformations broken down by Superheroes.  This is part II and will look at transformations broken down by type of transformation.

Alien Transformations

Alien Transformations, Alien Collage Key, Action Comics #239, Adventure #270, Aquaman #16, Batman #140, Blackhawk #177, Alien Blackhawk, Detective Comics #251, Jimmy Olsen #32

Alien Collage Key

Action Comics #239, Adventure Comics #270, Aquaman #16, Batman #140, Blackhawk #177 (Alien Blackhawk), Detective Comics #251, Jimmy Olsen #32

Animal Transformations

Animal Transformations, Animal Collage Key, Action Comics #243, Lion Headed Superman, Action Comics #296, Ant Superman, Action Comics #303, Kryptonian Monster, Action Comics #284, Mermaid Supergirl, Adventure #330, Gorilla Braniac 5, Black Hawk #205, Dinosaur, Gorilla, Jimmy Olsen #66, Cat Headed Lois Lane, Lois Lane #13, Lois Lane #92, Lois Lane Centaur, Supergirl #8, Medusa Hair, Superman #139

Animal Collage Key

Action Comics #243 (Lion Headed Superman), Action Comics #296 (Ant Superman), Action Comics #303 (Kryptonian Monster), Adventure Comics #330 (Gorilla Braniac 5), Black Hawk #205 (Dinosaur, Gorilla), Jimmy Olsen #66 (Cat Headed Lois Lane), Lois Lane #13 (Cat Headed Lois Lane), Lois Lane #92 (Lois Lane Centaur), Supergirl #8 (Medusa Hair), Superman #165 (Lion Headed Superman).  Is a Sphinx an animal?  If so then in Superboy #103 there is one more animal transformation.

Superboy #103 Sphinx

Baby Transformations

Baby Transformations, Baby Collage Key, Action #284, Baby Superman, Adventure #317, Baby Legions of Superheroes, Batman #147, Baby Batman, Jimmy Olsen #66, Baby Perry White, Lois Lane #10, Baby Lois Lane, Adventure Comics #356

Baby Collage Key

Action Comics #284 (Baby Superman), Adventure Comics #317 (Baby Legions of Superheroes), Batman #147 (Baby Batman), Jimmy Olsen #66 (Baby Perry White), Lois Lane #10 (Baby Lois Lane)

Caveman Transformations

Caveman Transformations, Caveman Collage Key, Action #169, Clark Kent, Caveman, Blackhawk #205, Superman #171, Superman Caveman, World’s Finest #138, Caveman Batman, Caveman Robin, Caveman Superman, World’s Finest #151, Superman Caveman,

Caveman Collage Key

Action Comics #169 (Clark Kent, Caveman, Blackhawk #205, Superman #171 (Superman Caveman), World’s Finest #138 (Caveman Batman, Robin & Superman), World’s Finest #151 (Superman Caveman)

Devil Transformations

Devil Transformations, Devil Collage Key, Action #324, Devil Supergirl, Jimmy Olsen #68, Devil Superman, Jimmy Olsen #81

Devil Collage Key

Action Comics #324 (Devil Supergirl), Jimmy Olsen #68 (Devil Superman), Jimmy Olsen #81 (Devil Superman)

Doppelganger Transformations

Doppelganger Transformations, Doppelganger Collage Key, Action Comics #312, King Superman, Adventure #255, Action Comics #341, Wonder Woman #62, Triplet, Wonder Woman #90, Giant Double, Wonder Woman #98, Wonder Woman #102, Wonder Woman #111

Doppelganger Collage Key

Action Comics #312 (Clark Kent vs. King Superman), Adventure Comics #255, Wonder Woman #62 (Triplet), Wonder Woman #90 (Giant Double), Wonder Woman #98, Wonder Woman #102 (Triplet), Wonder Woman#111. Action Comics #341 doesn’t really belong in the collage since the Clark Kent is a Phantom Zone imposter but the decision to include was done for visual aesthetic reasons.

Element Transformation

Element Transformation, Element Transformations Collage Key, Blackhawk #182, Stone Blackhawks, Detective Comics #294, Calcium Batman, Detective Comics #302, Bronze Batman

Element Transformations Collage Key

Blackhawk #182 (Stone Blackhawks), Detective Comics #294 (Calcium Batman), Detective Comics #302 (Bronze Batman)

Fat Transformations

Fat Transformations, Fat Collage Key, Action Comics #383, Fat Supergirl, Adventure #298, Fat Lang Lang, Fat Superboy, Adventure #330, Fat Superboy, Adventure #345, Fat Matter Eater Lad, Flash #115, Fat Flash, Jimmy Olsen #49, Fat Jimmy Olsen, Lois Lane #5, Fat Lois Lane, Superman #221, Fat Superman

Fat Collage Key 

Action Comics #383 (Fat Supergirl), Adventure Comics #298 (Fat Lang Lang, Fat Superboy), Adventure Comics #330 (Fat Superboy), Adventure Comics #345 (Fat Matter Eater Lad), Flash #115 (Fat Flash), Jimmy Olsen #49 (Fat Jimmy Olsen), Lois Lane #5 (Fat Lois Lane), Superman #221 (Fat Superman)

Freak Transformations

Freak Transformations, Freak Collage Key , Action Comics #284, Two Headed Supergirl, Aquaman #21, Aquaman Giant Freak, Brave & Bold #68, Bat Hulk, Batman #162, Batman Creature, Challengers of the Unknown #50, Giant Green Freak, Jimmy Olsen #53, Giant Turtle Man, Jimmy Olsen #59, Fat Freak, Lois Lane #66, Lois Lane with Green Furry Feet, Rip Hunter Time Master #28, Giant Blue Fanged Creature

Freak Collage Key

Action Comics #284 (Two Headed Supergirl), Aquaman #21 (Aquaman Giant Freak), Brave & Bold #68 (Bat Hulk), Batman #162 (Batman Creature), Challengers of the Unknown #50 (Giant Green Freak), Jimmy Olsen #53 (Giant Turtle Man), Jimmy Olsen #59 (Fat Freak), Lois Lane #66 (Lois Lane with Green Furry Feet), Rip Hunter Time Master #28 (Giant Blue Fanged Creature)

Gender Transformations

Gender, cross-dressing, female Krypto, Kryptonia, Cross-Dressing, Superman #349, Superman/Batman #24, Jimmy Olsen #67, Jimmy Olsen #84, Jimmy Olsen #95, Jimmy Olsen #159, Bah, Hembeck! #4, Real Girl #6

Gender Collage Key

Superboy #101, Superman #349, Superman/Batman #24, Jimmy Olsen #67, Jimmy Olsen #84, Jimmy Olsen #95.  Incredibly there are some gender bending transformations is the normally stodgy pages of DC Comics.  Jimmy Olsen was a cross-dresser in Jimmy Olsen #67, 84, 95, 159; Bah, Hembeck! #4 and Real Girl #6.  Krypto became Kryptonia in Superboy #101.  Krypto was not just turned into a female but a female collie!  This happened due to red kryptonite.  I would say the human equivalent of a breed is race.  So if Superman ran into that particular piece of Red Kryptonite then he would become a woman and also change race.  This would be a very politically correct Superman.  Superman runs into female versions of himself in Superman #349 and Superman/Batman #24.  Actually the whole topic of Superwoman versus Supergirl is rather complex but so far Superman has never been transformed into Superwoman and that’s ok with me! However, in Supergirl (vol. 4) #79 (2003) Superman is exposed to Pink Kryptonite and then shows gay tendencies.  This was a spoof of the Red Kryptonite transformations of the silver age.

Supergirl (vol. 4) #79 (2003) Superman is exposed to Pink Kryptonite and then shows gay tendencies. This was a spoof of the Red Kryptonite transformations of the silver age.

Genie Transformations

Genie Transformations, Genie Collage Key, Detective Comics #322, Batman Genie, Jimmy Olsen #42, Jimmy Olsen Genie

Genie Collage Key

Detective Comics #322 (Batman Genie), Jimmy Olsen #42 (Jimmy Olsen Genie)

Giant Transformations

Giant Transformations, Giant Collage Key, Action #325, Giant Superboy, Aquaman #2, Giant Aqualad, Challengers of the Unknown #20, Giant Rocky, Challengers of the Unknown #36, Giant Rocky, Detective Comics #243, Giant Batman, House of Mystery #143, Giant Zook, Jimmy Olsen #77, Giant Jimmy Olsen, Superman #226, Giant Superman, Wonder Woman #136, Giant Wonder Woman

Giant Collage Key

Action Comics #325 (Giant Superboy), Aquaman #2 (Giant Aqualad), Challengers of the Unknown #20 (Giant Rocky), Challengers of the Unknown #36 (Giant Rocky), Detective Comics #243 (Giant Batman), House of Mystery #143 (Giant Zook), Jimmy Olsen #77 (Giant Jimmy Olsen), Superman #226 (Giant Superman), Wonder Woman #136 (Giant Wonder Woman)

Giant Head Transformations

Giant Head Transformations, Giant Head Collage Key, Action Comics #256, Ultra Superman, Adventure Comics #324, Evolvo Lad, Blackhawk #205, Giant Headed Blackhawk, Challengers of the Unknown #39, Giant Headed Rocky, Jimmy Olsen #22, Super-Brain of Jimmy Olsen, Lois Lane #27, Lois Lane’s Super-Brain, Superman #224, Super Baby, World’s Finest #151, Batman of 800,000 AD

Giant Head Collage Key

Action Comics #256 (Ultra Superman), Adventure Comics #324 (Evolvo Lad), Blackhawk #205 (Giant Headed Blackhawk), Challengers of the Unknown #39 (Giant Headed Rocky), Jimmy Olsen #22 (Super-Brain of Jimmy Olsen), Lois Lane #27 (Lois Lane’s Super-Brain), Superman #224 (Super Baby), World’s Finest #151 (Batman of 800,000 AD)

Actually the Super Baby in Superman #224 should not be included since this is not a transformed Superman but his mutant baby.  However, the inclusion makes sense artistically.

Half Body Transformations

Half Body Transformations, Half Body Collage Key, Action Comics #290, Flash #146, Green Lantern #29

Half Body Collage Key

Action Comics #290 (One half body super, one half body not super), Flash #146 (Flash top, Mirror Master bottom), Green Lantern #29 (One half body visible, One half body gone)

Handicap

Handicap Collage

 

Handicap Collage Key

Adventure Comics #259 (Blind Superboy), Adventure Comics #332 (Lighting Lad loses arm), Justice League of America, V1 #36

Jungle Transformations

Jungle Transformations, Jungle Collage Key, Batman #72, Jungle Batman, Jimmy Olsen #10, Jungle Jimmy Olsen, Jimmy Olsen #98, Jungle Jimmy, Lois Lane #11, Leopard Girl, Lois Lane #124, Jungle Queen

Jungle Collage Key

Batman #72 (Jungle Batman), Jimmy Olsen #10 (Jungle Jimmy Olsen), Jimmy Olsen #98 (Jungle Jimmy), Lois Lane #11 (Leopard Girl), Lois Lane #124 (Jungle Queen)

King Transformations

King Transformations, King Collage Key, Action Comics #244, Undersea King, Action Comics, King Superman, Jimmy Olsen #3, King Olsen, World’s Finest #111, Indian Superman King, Superboy #32, King Superboy, World’s Finest #165 (King Superman, King Batman, World’s Finest #240, King Superman

King Collage Key 

Action Comics #244 (Undersea King), Action Comics # (King Superman), Batman #125 (King Batman), Jimmy Olsen #3 (King Olsen), World’s Finest #111 (Indian Superman King)

Mermaid Transformations

Mermaid Transformations, Action Comics #284, Mermaid Supergirl, Lois Lane #12 , Mermaid Lois Lane, Superboy #194, Mermaid Superboy, Superman #139, Superman Merman

Mermaid Transformations Collage Key

Action Comics #284 (Mermaid Supergirl), Lois Lane #12 (Mermaid Lois Lane), Superboy #194, Mermaid Superboy, Superman #139 (Superman Merman),

Mirror Transformations

Mirror Transformations, Mirror Collage Key, Flash #124, Mirror-Flash, Justice League of America #7, Fun-House Mirror, World’s Finest #121, Mirror Batman

Mirror Collage Key

Flash #124 (Mirror-Flash), Justice League of America #7 (Fun-House Mirror), World’s Finest #121 (Mirror Batman)

Negative Being Transformations

Negative Transformations, Negative Collage Key, Detective #284, Negative Batman, Mystery in Space #78, World’s Finest #126, Negative Superman,

Negative Collage Key 

Detective Comics #284 (Negative Batman), Mystery in Space #78, World’s Finest #126 (Negative Superman)

The Negative Superman should not be included since this is not a transformed Superman but another Superman but the decision to include makes sense visually and most of all I needed two covers to justify a category.  Possibly, the Negative Superman should also be included in the Doppelganger category.  Creating taxonomy of transformations has not been easy!

Old Transformations

Old Transformations, Old Collage Key, Action Comics #251, Oldest Man in Metropolis, Action Comics #270, Superman’s Old Age, Action Comics #396, Crippled and Old Superman, Action Comics #397 (Part II), Batman #119, Rip Van Batman, Flash #157, Oldest Man Alive, Jimmy Olsen #, Old Jimmy Olsen, Lois Lane #, Lois Lane’s Old Age

Old Collage Key

 Action Comics #251 (Oldest Man in Metropolis), Action Comics #270 (Superman’s Old Age), Action Comics #396 (Crippled and Old Superman), Action Comics #397 (Part II), Batman #119 (Rip Van Batman), Flash #157 (Oldest Man Alive), Jimmy Olsen # (Old Jimmy Olsen), Lois Lane # (Lois Lane’s Old Age)

Phantom/Ghost/Invisible Transformations

Ghost Collage Key, Action Comics #595, Superman Ghost, Adventure Comics #357, The Ghost of Ferro Lad, Blackhawk #127, Blackhawk Ghost, Superman #186, Clark Kent Ghost, Superman Ghost, World’s Finest #130, Batman Ghost

Ghost Collage Key

Action Comics #595 (Superman Ghost), Adventure Comics #357 (The Ghost of Ferro Lad), Blackhawk #127 (The Ghost of Blackhawk), Superman #186 (Clark Kent Ghost vs. Superman Ghost), World’s Finest #130 (Batman Ghost)

Phantom Collage Key, Action Comics #131, Superman in 4th Dimension, Adventure Comics #283, The Phantom Superboy, Green Lantern #20, Phantom Green Lantern, Jimmy Olsen #12, Invisible Jimmy Olsen, Jimmy Olsen #40, Lois Lane #33, Phantom Lois Lane, Lois Lane #101, Invisible Lois Lane, Superboy #162, The Super-Phantom of Smallville

Phantom Collage Key

Action Comics #131(Superman in 4th Dimension), Adventure Comics #283 (The Phantom Superboy), Green Lantern #20 (Phantom Green Lantern), Jimmy Olsen #12 (Invisible Jimmy Olsen – title), Jimmy Olsen #40 (Invisible Jimmy Olsen – title), Lois Lane #33 (Phantom Lois Lane), Lois Lane #101 (Invisible Lois Lane), Superboy #162 (The Super-Phantom of Smallville)

In the Silver Age the words phantom and invisible are used in a sloppy manner. For example, Jimmy Olsen is twice turned into a phantom i.e. an insubstantial and invisible being but the title refers to an invisible Jimmy Olsen rather than a phantom Jimmy Olsen.  This is rather strange since the Legion of Superheroes of the Silver Age has a Phantom Girl versus an Invisible Kid and their powers are very well delineated.  You can see the Phantom Girl but not touch her.  You can touch the Invisible Kid but can’t see him.  Only by having both the powers of the Invisible Kid and the Phantom Girl could you have the powers of a ghost!

However, I would say the Phantom Zone precedent means that a being that is both invisible and insubstantial due to scientific means is a Phantom.  Silver Age science even established that the Phantom Girl could visit the Phantom Zone and say “hello” to Mon-El but the Invisible Kid could not enter the Phantom Zone.  Ghost Boy could have kept Mon-El company 24/7, if he had wanted to and that might have been a nice subplot I had never thought about at the time.  Ghosts as opposed to phantoms have supernatural origins and generally control of both their visibility and maybe their insubstantial nature.  Are you confused?  Well too bad because if you had grown up on Silver Age comic books then this would all make perfect sense.  Still the ghosts should be easy enough to label!

However, ghosts in the DC universe often turn out to be phantoms i.e. there is a scientific rather than supernatural explanation.  The Ferro Lad ghost turns out to be a controller created phantom but the real Ferro Lad ghost then causes the controller to die of fright.  Because of all this terminology confusion, the decision was made to make one category for phantom, ghost and invisible transformations.  The visual effect is the same and comic books are all about the visual effect.

Radioactive

Radioactive, Radioactive Collage Key, Detective #17, Radioactive Batman, Jimmy Olsen #17, Radioactive Jimmy Olsen, Radioactive Boy,

Radioactive Collage Key

Detective Comics #17 (Radioactive Batman), Jimmy Olsen #17 (Radioactive Jimmy Olsen)

Robot Transformations

Robot Transformations, Robot Collage Key, Action Comics #225, Robot Superman, Action Comics #, Clark Kent Metallo, Adventure Comics #237, Ma and Pa Kent Robots, Green Lantern #36, Green Lantern Robot, Jimmy Olsen #70, Robot Jimmy Olsen, Jimmy Olsen #130, The Computer-Man of Steel,

Robot Collage Key 

Action Comics #225 (Robot Superman), Action Comics # (Clark Kent Metallo), Adventure Comics #237 (Ma and Pa Kent Robots), Green Lantern #36 (Green Lantern Robot), Jimmy

Small Person Transformations

Small Transformations, Small Collage Key, Action Comics #283, Small Supergirl, Adventure Comics #330, Small Colossal Boy, Flash #109, Small Flash, Justice League of America #10, Finger Puppet Justice League, Justice League of America #18, Shrunken Justice League, Justice League of America #60, Bee Drone Justice League, Superman #245, Super-Mite, Detective Comics #127, Small Batman and Robin, Detective Comics #148

Small Collage Key 

Action Comics #283 (Small Supergirl), Adventure Comics #330 (Small Colossal Boy), Detective Comics #127 (Small Batman and Robin), Detective Comics #148 (Small Batman and Robin), Flash #109 (Small Flash), Justice League of America #10 (Finger Puppet Justice League), Justice League of America #18 (Shrunken Justice League), Justice League of America #60 (Bee Drone Justice League), Superman #245 (Super-Mite)

Tree Being Transformation

Trees, Trees Collage Key, Justice League of America #9, Justice League Trees, Lois Lane #112, Superman Tree

Trees Collage Key

Justice League of America #9 (Justice League Trees), Lois Lane #112 (Superman Tree)

Underwater Being Transformations

Underwater Transformations, Underwater Collage Key, Batman #118, Merman Batman, Superman #244, Superman’s Undersea Kingdom

Underwater Collage Key

Batman #118 (Merman Batman), Superman #244 (Superman’s Undersea Kingdom)

Werewolf Transformations

Werewolf Transformations, Werewolf Collage Key, Action #283, Linda Danver’s Werewolf, Jimmy Olsen #44, Jimmy Olsen Wolf-Man, Superboy #116, Superboy #180

Werewolf Collage Key

Action Comics #283 (Linda Danver’s Werewolf), Jimmy Olsen #44 (Jimmy Olsen Wolf-Man), Superboy #116, Superboy #180

CONCLUSION

Transformations at DC comics during the Silver Age showed definite patterns.  Certain heroes were transformed more than others.  Batman and Superman suffered a lot of transformations but this could be function of the fact that both Batman and Superman were in multiple titles that had extremely long runs.  Transformations were popular and the transformation of the top superheroes at DC during the Silver Age made marketing sense.  Lois Lane did not have as many transformations as Jimmy Olsen but her 12 transformations seems like a high number given that she only starred in one title.  The marketing logic might have been to use popular transformations that worked with one of the Superman family members with the other Superman family members that had a comic book title and hope for similar success.  Wonder Woman suffered the doppelganger transformation five times and this is an extreme case of the same transformation being used again and again with the same character almost obsessively.  Wonder Woman in the Silver Age was a strange little title and someday I am going to write an in depth analysis of what was done to Wonder Woman during this time period.  Transformations at DC during the Silver Age are almost always one-shot affairs.  The exception is in the Legion of Superheroes were Lightning Lad lost his arm for several issues and Matter Lad was turned into a fat boy for several issues.

Marvel handles transformations in an entirely different manner.  Transformation is an ongoing plot device in the case of the Hulk, Iron Man’s many armors, the Thing, the six-armed Spider-Man and X-23’s vampirism.  Even the relatively short term transformation of Captain America into a werewolf lasts more than one issue.  I will eventually write another DC vs. Marvel article comparing the role of transformation in the comic books of the two companies.

My other website at:

Fox Superpower List

More comic book articles on this blog at:

https://foxhugh.com/?s=comic

 

Hugh Fox III - Grass

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