Gen 13's Rogues' Gallery

Gen 13's Rogues' Gallery

(pop culture)
Set in the WildStorm universe originally created by artist Jim Lee in 1992 when he co-founded Image Comics and debuted WildC.A.T.S (later simply Wildcats), the young men and women who comprised Gen 13 were the offspring of members of the special ops unit Team 7. Many of the Team 7 operatives were, in turn, members of Gen 12, or the twelfth generation of test subjects in Project Genesis, an attempt by the clandestine organization International Operations (I.O.) to create “SPBs” or Super-Powered Beings. The characters and the set-up for the series were revealed in Gen 13 #1, the first issue of a five-issue miniseries from Image Comics in 1994. The team had first appeared in the second issue of the Image/Valiant crossover series Deathmate (1993–1994), though with a substantially altered origin relating to the universe-bending nature of the crossover. The success of the miniseries lead to an ongoing series in 1995. The villains of the series were frequently centered around various factions of I.O., some of which were directly opposed to each other. While there were some clearcut bad guys and good guys, there were also the stabbed-in-the-back trappings of the espionage world to accompany the traditional superhero rumbles. The failure of Gen 12 and the resulting ban on Project Genesis didn't stop certain groups from coveting the possibilties of spies and assasains with incredible powers or gifts, so the project was reopened. An extremely gifted manipulator, Ivana was one of the movers and shakers in the I.O. faction favoring Project Genesis. Her agents brought team members together for testing. Ivana was overtly sexy, favoring form-fitting clothing and impossible poses common in early Image Comics. She worked for Miles Craven, one of the real masterminds of I.O. Ivana not only had a cadre of regular agents working for her, but she also employed operatives such as Mathew Callahan (Threshold) and Nicole Callahan (Bliss), who were genetically active (superpowered) children of Gen 12 members, too. Like Gen 13's eventual mentor, John (Jack) Lynch, a former Team 7 member, Ivana had no spectacular powers, but relied on her cunning, her treachery, and her ability to command to get things done. After their escape from Project Genesis, they were tracked by armor-clad I.O. operatives known as Black Hammers (the name of the type of battle suits), met the female warrior descendants of the legendary Amazons in the Codas Citadel (seen previously in WildC.A.T.S), and confronted the Pirate King (all in Gen 13 #5). The team also met Frostbite (with the powers the name implies), the Order of the Cross (the Vatican's superteam), Lord Defile (a Daemonite, the alien species fought be the WildC.A.T.S team), the techno-wizardry of Kaizen, and even the Stupid, Stupid Rat Creatures from cartoonist Jeff Smith's Bone. After the departure of co-creators Brandon Choi and J. Scott Campbell (Danger Girl), new foes included the Seven Deadly Sins, Helspont, Tao, and Tindalos. The series ended with the entire team at least appearing to be destroyed by an atomic bomb in Gen 13 #76 (2002). A follow-up series, from DC Comics' WildStorm imprint, a six-issue Gen 13 (2003) miniseries, later titled September Song in trade-paperback format, featured new characters and a dragon tattoo come to life as a villain.