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The Modern Age (1980–present) villainess of the night, Nocturna first appeared in the pages of Detective Comics #529 (1983) in a story scripted by Doug Moench and penciled by Gene Colan. At the age of twelve, orphan Natasha encounters the millionaire and closet crimelord Charles Knight, who becomes a father figure to the Gotham City street urchin. After Charles is killed by rivals, Natasha meets her stepbrother Anton, with whom she falls in love. The two soon use up their inheritance, partly due to living a life of luxury and partly due to the expensive medical procedure needed to treat Natasha's sensitivity to sunlight—a disorder that helps perpetuate her identity as an astronomer. When the two run out of money, they take to a life of crime—Anton, clad in a black body suit, robs Gotham's rich as the agile Night-Thief, while Natasha operates behind the scenes as Nocturna, mistress of the night. Through the years this duo has had several clashes with Batman. During the time that Night-Thief was locked up in prison, Nocturna continued her life of crime with other villainous allies, namely Gotham crook Sturges Hellstrom, aka Nightshade. Still later, she became an intimate friend of both Bruce Wayne and Batman, making her status of foe questionable. Upon his release, Anton—now known as the darker Night-Slayer (Detective Comics #544, 1984)—murdered Hellstrom and vowed to kill Nocturna. However, Nocturna disappeared in an accident during DC's Crisis on Infinite Earths miniseries and has not been seen in the comic-book pages since. Nocturna was considered for inclusion in Batman: The Animated Series, but ultimately FOX Standards nixed the idea of a character with vampire undertones appearing on children's afternoon television.
The Supervillain Book: The Evil Side of Comics and Hollywood © 2006 Visible Ink Press®. All rights reserved.