History Main / ThePhantomStranger

22nd Jan '14 9:57:39 AM LadyMomus
Is there an issue? Send a Message
moving to correct namespace
[[quoteright:243:http://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/PhantomStranger05.jpg]] [[caption-width-right:243:Please note he's wearing a cape, NOT a trenchcoat!]] ->''I am known in many realms by many names, Bartholomew Allen, but those that know me in '''your''' world call me the Phantom Stranger. I work in-between worlds, an agent of destiny and the Fates, restoring order and balance where chaos has lain her hands.'' -->--The Phantom Stranger explains himself to a confused [[TheFlash Impulse]] (''Impulse'' #87) '''The Phantom Stranger''' is ''the'' most mysterious of Creator/DCComics' characters: even though he's been around since 1952, his full origin, his identity or even the full extent of his powers has never been revealed. Of course, being mysterious ''is'' his main gimmick, so this is intentional. The character debuted in ''Phantom Stranger'' vol. 1 #1 (August-September, 1952), created by John Broome and Carmine Infantino. His original series only lasted 6 issues ending in June-July, 1953. He was revived in ''Showcase'' #80 (February, 1969). Then received a second series named after him, which lasted for 41 issues (May-June, 1969 - February-March, 1976). When that series ended, the Stranger started making guest appearances in series devoted to the JusticeLeagueOfAmerica, ''Comicbook/SwampThing'', etc. He has never quite faded away. The character ''has'' changed over the years, though. Originally, he was mostly a host of [[ScoobyDooHoax mysteries involving the supernatural]], that he would help debunk... only to leave other people wondering if ''he'' was a supernatural being. Ironically, when the Stranger was a guest in some of Doctor Thirteen's (another DC ghost debunker) own stories, he was the subject of the Doctor's attention, but Thirteen could never prove that the Stranger wasn't a magical being. By the time the Stranger entered the larger [[Franchise/TheDCU DC Universe]], it was decided that he was indeed magical, but still little else was revealed about him. He almost always appears to help other heroes deal with a magical menace that they can't handle alone- though his help would always be minimal, only taking a direct hand when absolutely needed. Whether he did this because he saw his job as being helping others to help themselves, or because some PowersThatBe limited his actions, has never been made clear. The Stranger has starred in his own series, and he did have his own supporting cast, including: Cassandra, a blind psychic who was in love with him; Tannarak, an alchemist obsessed with immortality, an occasional ally; and Tala, a demonic sorceress, best known for being Lex Luthor's moll in the animated ''WesternAnimation/JusticeLeague'' series. Most of these have not been seen in years, though. The Stranger has an habit of appearing (and disappearing) when [[StealthHiBye nobody is looking]], like a leprechaun, which most people find very annoying. He often works with other DC and Vertigo mystics, notably JohnConstantine, Doctor Occult and Mister E, who are known as the "Trenchcoat Brigade" (though the Stranger wears a cape, not a trenchcoat.) One of the more unusual moments in the Stranger's publishing history involves ''Secret Origins'', the 1980s anthology series that existed to provide origin stories for those characters who had never been given one before. The Phantom Stranger issue contains not one but four origin stories, each by a different writer and each giving different answers to the questions of who the Stranger is, where his powers came from, and why he [[WalkingTheEarth walks the earth]]. (Each story also gives a different answer to the question of what color the Stranger's hair was before it was white. It's the little touches...). Here are the options: # The Stranger is the Wandering Jew. When King Herod ordered all the Jewish male babies killed (in an attempt to eliminate Jesus), Stranger (named Isaac in this version) lost his son (and his wife, who attempted to protect their son) in the ensuing massacre. He spent 30 years furious at Jesus about this, and when Jesus was crucified, the Stranger bribed a guard so that ''he'' could be the one to torture the Messiah. Jesus sentenced him to wander until doomsday for this. He eventually realized his mistake and devoted himself to doing good, even turning down an offer to be allowed to die and go to heaven. # After a biblical event in which God punished a bunch of people, the Stranger was a good man who was spared his wrath. He questions God's actions and commits suicide. The angel who delivered him to safety punished him by barring him from the afterlife, resurrecting his body, and condemning him to walk the Earth, saving people one soul at a time. The angel may or may not have been ComicBook/TheSpectre. # The Stranger is from the far distant future, one of a group of scientists who [[TimeTravelTenseTrouble sought]] to delay the imminent end of the universe using time travel. The Stranger we know (and the Stranger this scientist will one day become) shows up in this future time to help the scientist stop one of his colleagues, an OmnicidalManiac who intended to use their project for the destruction of the universe instead of its preservation. Long story short, the not-yet-Stranger scientist time travels back to the very beginning of the universe where the primal forces of creation (in combination with his own inherent potential, and an apparent passing on of life-force from the dying Stranger-We-Know) transformed him into something more than human. When his own time eventually rolls around, he will [[StableTimeLoop tip his younger self off about his colleague, unlock his potential]], and then, at long last, die. ItMakesSenseInContext.[[note]]This origin story also is the basis for [[ComicBook/JLAAvengers Krona]].[[/note]] # The Stranger was an angel who refused to participate in the battle between God and Lucifer. Because of this he was cast out of heaven, but Hell didn't want him either (so he's basically half-fallen). He is thus condemned to walk the Earth for all time. This story was written by Creator/AlanMoore, and is generally the most popular interpretation. It is, of course, entirely possible that none of these are his real origin, but something else entirely is. In fact, considering both the nature of The Stranger and of the DC Universe, it's equally possible that all of them are true, plus however many others you'd care to imagine. (The {{New 52}} has given him a new origin, which is presumably canon for the moment; he was one of three beings punished by the gods of the [[{{Shazam}} Rock of Eternity]] for their sins against magic, and it's heavily implied that he's [[spoiler: [[Literature/TheBible Judas Iscariot]]]].) Contrary to what many fans believe, the origin story that claims the Stranger is a half-fallen angel (that is, he stayed neutral during Lucifer's Rebellion and isn't welcome in either Heaven or Hell as a result) is ''not'' the Stranger's official origin, although it is the most popular (being written by Creator/AlanMoore probably didn't hurt). Nor are his powers limitless, as he has been seen struggling against magical opponents such as Tala. However, he ''is'' a member of the {{Justice League of America}}, though he still doesn't show up except when they need his help- they can't contact him. Note also that the Stranger does ''not'' wear a mask -- that's just an (intentional) visual effect, the shadow of his hat on his face. However, the shadow still appears even when he's wearing a Santa hat, or even no hat at all. He's just that awesome. (His hair, by the way, is white.) ---- !!Tropes associated with the character: * TheAgeless * AllPowerfulBystander: At times, it seems like the Stranger should be able to easily solve any problem he has, but for some unknown reason is prevented from intervening directly. * TheAtoner: In one of his {{multiple choice past}}s he was the Wandering Jew, who eventually realized that his curse was actually an opportunity to do good and serve God, and even requested to remain alive longer when given the opportunity to be freed from it. ** This is also part of what he says about his [[spoiler: and Pandora's]] fate: cursed to watch what he has sowed. * BadassLongcoat: Though he traditionally wears a cape, he dons a trench coat in ComicBook/TheBooksOfMagic and [[TrenchcoatBrigade The Trenchcoat Brigade]] ** It should be noted that in his original (1950s) appearances, he does wear some kind of overcoat, with a button-up shirt and tie. (This look can be seen in the upper-left-hand corner spot illustration on the cover reproduced above.) * TheChessmaster * CosmopolitanCouncil: The Stranger was one of the members of "The Quintessence", an alliance of powerful good mystics who watched over the DC Universe... and rarely did anything else. As of current continuity, it's no longer in operation. ** In the {{New 52}} continuity, an alliance of mystics branded the Stranger as one of the three greatest sinners of all time and cursed him to forever be a stranger to humanity. * DisabledLoveInterest: Cassandra Craft, the Stranger's blind girlfriend. * DungeonMaster: A good one, but his motives are a mystery. * EvilSorcerer: Tala and Tannarak. * FaceFramedInShadow: He doesn't wear a mask, but no matter what type of hat he's wearing it always casts a shadow over the top half of his face to achieve the same effect. [[InexplicablyAwesome Even when he's not wearing a hat at all.]] * FlatEarthAtheist: Dr. Thirteen. * FlyingDutchman: One of the suggested origins for the Stranger is that he's the literal Wandering Jew. Not very likely to be used often though, as this origin involves [[JesusTaboo Jesus]]. * GuileHero: Bordering on Magnificent Bastard. Although he is extremely powerful, the Stranger is forbidden from directly interfering and must persuade others to do so. * HellOfAHeaven: The {{New 52}} version calls Heaven "my personal hell". This makes a lot of sense, considering his origins at that point. * IHaveManyNames * InexplicablyAwesome: Its part of his entire shtick, though it is lessened a lot in the {{New 52}}. * IntangibleTimeTravel: One of the Stranger's powers. * JokerImmunity: Tannarak. The guy just refuses to ''stop coming back''. * JuryOfTheDamned: The Stranger once had to defend {{Superman}} before one. * MultipleChoicePast: Several ''intentionally'' conflicting origins have been suggested for the Stranger. ** Still in force as of his BlackestNight tie-in. Not only is he neither alive nor dead, but he is something "strange" (this is coming from black rings that in all other cases, with the exception of identifying the White Light, are perfectly accurate at assessing emotional states, life and death, and so on - yet they do not recognize what he is) that even Nekron does not understand. And when a Black Lantern attempts to take his heart, a page is shown of three of the possible origins of the Stranger, followed by the Black Lantern lying on the ground covered in scorch marks (thrown out violently with no harm being done to Stranger) and the Phantom Stranger declaring that the Black Lantern has "seen everything and nothing" of the truth. ** The {{New 52}} provides another possible explanation for what he is: [[spoiler: along with Pandora, the instigator of Flashpoint and the {{New 52}}]], he is one of three sinners that is cursed to watch what they have sowed. The question is this: what did the Phantom Stranger do? [[spoiler:He is later revealed to be ''Judas'', the man who sold out Jesus for 30 pieces of silver. He wears the 30 silver pieces on a necklace that was ''seared'' into his neck (turning his hair white in the process) as part of his punishment.]] * MySignificanceSenseIsTingling * MysteriousPast * NeutralityBacklash: One of the Stranger's possible origins: he was an angel who refused to take sides in the war between Heaven and Hell. Afterward both sides cursed him, and condemned him to be a stranger forever walking the Earth. * NiceHat: He just wouldn't be the same without his fedora. * NoNameGiven: Though in one of his four aforementioned [[MultipleChoicePast multiple choice pasts]] his original name was Isaac; none of the other three, by the way, offer any name. [[spoiler: Averted in his {{New 52}} background, where it's revealed he was Judas.]] * OccultDetective * OlderThanTheyLook: Much, much older. * OurAngelsAreDifferent: In the Stranger's angelic origin it is speculated that he was an angel who might have had a significant impact in the celestial struggle but instead took neither side in the Heavenly Civil War. * Really700YearsOld * RefusingParadise: At the end of the origin story that states he's the original WanderingJew, God tells him he's earned time off for good behavior and can go to heaven now, and he asks to stick around on Earth and keep helping people. * ShroudedInMyth * TheSlowPath: In another of the origins, the Stranger is a man from the distant future traveling home the only way he can. * StableTimeLoop: In the man-from-the-future origin. * StealthHiBye: A venerable master of it. He can even pull off this trick ''right in front'' of someone's eyes. * ToHellAndBack: The Stranger CAN enter Hell- he just isn't welcome there. * TrenchcoatBrigade: See BadassLongcoat above. A member of the TropeMaker. * WalkingTheEarth: All of his origins have him doing this for one reason or another, either out of choice or because he must wait until the end of time to die. * TheWatcher: Sometimes the Stranger merely narrates a story rather than taking an active part in it. (In the Creator/VertigoComics ''MadameXanadu'' series, he insists it is not his place to interfere, except at certain junctures, to specific ends. Madame X concludes that this is an excuse to do whatever he likes and then disappear without dealing with the consequences. Though she isn't exactly an entirely objective observer of his actions, all things being said and done.) ----
to:
[[quoteright:243:http://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/PhantomStranger05.jpg]] [[caption-width-right:243:Please note he's wearing a cape, NOT a trenchcoat!]] ->''I am known in many realms by many names, Bartholomew Allen, but those that know me in '''your''' world call me the Phantom Stranger. I work in-between worlds, an agent of destiny and the Fates, restoring order and balance where chaos has lain her hands.'' -->--The Phantom Stranger explains himself to a confused [[TheFlash Impulse]] (''Impulse'' #87) '''The Phantom Stranger''' is ''the'' most mysterious of Creator/DCComics' characters: even though he's been around since 1952, his full origin, his identity or even the full extent of his powers has never been revealed. Of course, being mysterious ''is'' his main gimmick, so this is intentional. The character debuted in ''Phantom Stranger'' vol. 1 #1 (August-September, 1952), created by John Broome and Carmine Infantino. His original series only lasted 6 issues ending in June-July, 1953. He was revived in ''Showcase'' #80 (February, 1969). Then received a second series named after him, which lasted for 41 issues (May-June, 1969 - February-March, 1976). When that series ended, the Stranger started making guest appearances in series devoted to the JusticeLeagueOfAmerica, ''Comicbook/SwampThing'', etc. He has never quite faded away. The character ''has'' changed over the years, though. Originally, he was mostly a host of [[ScoobyDooHoax mysteries involving the supernatural]], that he would help debunk... only to leave other people wondering if ''he'' was a supernatural being. Ironically, when the Stranger was a guest in some of Doctor Thirteen's (another DC ghost debunker) own stories, he was the subject of the Doctor's attention, but Thirteen could never prove that the Stranger wasn't a magical being. By the time the Stranger entered the larger [[Franchise/TheDCU DC Universe]], it was decided that he was indeed magical, but still little else was revealed about him. He almost always appears to help other heroes deal with a magical menace that they can't handle alone- though his help would always be minimal, only taking a direct hand when absolutely needed. Whether he did this because he saw his job as being helping others to help themselves, or because some PowersThatBe limited his actions, has never been made clear. The Stranger has starred in his own series, and he did have his own supporting cast, including: Cassandra, a blind psychic who was in love with him; Tannarak, an alchemist obsessed with immortality, an occasional ally; and Tala, a demonic sorceress, best known for being Lex Luthor's moll in the animated ''WesternAnimation/JusticeLeague'' series. Most of these have not been seen in years, though. The Stranger has an habit of appearing (and disappearing) when [[StealthHiBye nobody is looking]], like a leprechaun, which most people find very annoying. He often works with other DC and Vertigo mystics, notably JohnConstantine, Doctor Occult and Mister E, who are known as the "Trenchcoat Brigade" (though the Stranger wears a cape, not a trenchcoat.) One of the more unusual moments in the Stranger's publishing history involves ''Secret Origins'', the 1980s anthology series that existed to provide origin stories for those characters who had never been given one before. The Phantom Stranger issue contains not one but four origin stories, each by a different writer and each giving different answers to the questions of who the Stranger is, where his powers came from, and why he [[WalkingTheEarth walks the earth]]. (Each story also gives a different answer to the question of what color the Stranger's hair was before it was white. It's the little touches...). Here are the options: # The Stranger is the Wandering Jew. When King Herod ordered all the Jewish male babies killed (in an attempt to eliminate Jesus), Stranger (named Isaac in this version) lost his son (and his wife, who attempted to protect their son) in the ensuing massacre. He spent 30 years furious at Jesus about this, and when Jesus was crucified, the Stranger bribed a guard so that ''he'' could be the one to torture the Messiah. Jesus sentenced him to wander until doomsday for this. He eventually realized his mistake and devoted himself to doing good, even turning down an offer to be allowed to die and go to heaven. # After a biblical event in which God punished a bunch of people, the Stranger was a good man who was spared his wrath. He questions God's actions and commits suicide. The angel who delivered him to safety punished him by barring him from the afterlife, resurrecting his body, and condemning him to walk the Earth, saving people one soul at a time. The angel may or may not have been ComicBook/TheSpectre. # The Stranger is from the far distant future, one of a group of scientists who [[TimeTravelTenseTrouble sought]] to delay the imminent end of the universe using time travel. The Stranger we know (and the Stranger this scientist will one day become) shows up in this future time to help the scientist stop one of his colleagues, an OmnicidalManiac who intended to use their project for the destruction of the universe instead of its preservation. Long story short, the not-yet-Stranger scientist time travels back to the very beginning of the universe where the primal forces of creation (in combination with his own inherent potential, and an apparent passing on of life-force from the dying Stranger-We-Know) transformed him into something more than human. When his own time eventually rolls around, he will [[StableTimeLoop tip his younger self off about his colleague, unlock his potential]], and then, at long last, die. ItMakesSenseInContext.[[note]]This origin story also is the basis for [[ComicBook/JLAAvengers Krona]].[[/note]] # The Stranger was an angel who refused to participate in the battle between God and Lucifer. Because of this he was cast out of heaven, but Hell didn't want him either (so he's basically half-fallen). He is thus condemned to walk the Earth for all time. This story was written by Creator/AlanMoore, and is generally the most popular interpretation. It is, of course, entirely possible that none of these are his real origin, but something else entirely is. In fact, considering both the nature of The Stranger and of the DC Universe, it's equally possible that all of them are true, plus however many others you'd care to imagine. (The {{New 52}} has given him a new origin, which is presumably canon for the moment; he was one of three beings punished by the gods of the [[{{Shazam}} Rock of Eternity]] for their sins against magic, and it's heavily implied that he's [[spoiler: [[Literature/TheBible Judas Iscariot]]]].) Contrary to what many fans believe, the origin story that claims the Stranger is a half-fallen angel (that is, he stayed neutral during Lucifer's Rebellion and isn't welcome in either Heaven or Hell as a result) is ''not'' the Stranger's official origin, although it is the most popular (being written by Creator/AlanMoore probably didn't hurt). Nor are his powers limitless, as he has been seen struggling against magical opponents such as Tala. However, he ''is'' a member of the {{Justice League of America}}, though he still doesn't show up except when they need his help- they can't contact him. Note also that the Stranger does ''not'' wear a mask -- that's just an (intentional) visual effect, the shadow of his hat on his face. However, the shadow still appears even when he's wearing a Santa hat, or even no hat at all. He's just that awesome. (His hair, by the way, is white.) ---- !!Tropes associated with the character: * TheAgeless * AllPowerfulBystander: At times, it seems like the Stranger should be able to easily solve any problem he has, but for some unknown reason is prevented from intervening directly. * TheAtoner: In one of his {{multiple choice past}}s he was the Wandering Jew, who eventually realized that his curse was actually an opportunity to do good and serve God, and even requested to remain alive longer when given the opportunity to be freed from it. ** This is also part of what he says about his [[spoiler: and Pandora's]] fate: cursed to watch what he has sowed. * BadassLongcoat: Though he traditionally wears a cape, he dons a trench coat in ComicBook/TheBooksOfMagic and [[TrenchcoatBrigade The Trenchcoat Brigade]] ** It should be noted that in his original (1950s) appearances, he does wear some kind of overcoat, with a button-up shirt and tie. (This look can be seen in the upper-left-hand corner spot illustration on the cover reproduced above.) * TheChessmaster * CosmopolitanCouncil: The Stranger was one of the members of "The Quintessence", an alliance of powerful good mystics who watched over the DC Universe... and rarely did anything else. As of current continuity, it's no longer in operation. ** In the {{New 52}} continuity, an alliance of mystics branded the Stranger as one of the three greatest sinners of all time and cursed him to forever be a stranger to humanity. * DisabledLoveInterest: Cassandra Craft, the Stranger's blind girlfriend. * DungeonMaster: A good one, but his motives are a mystery. * EvilSorcerer: Tala and Tannarak. * FaceFramedInShadow: He doesn't wear a mask, but no matter what type of hat he's wearing it always casts a shadow over the top half of his face to achieve the same effect. [[InexplicablyAwesome Even when he's not wearing a hat at all.]] * FlatEarthAtheist: Dr. Thirteen. * FlyingDutchman: One of the suggested origins for the Stranger is that he's the literal Wandering Jew. Not very likely to be used often though, as this origin involves [[JesusTaboo Jesus]]. * GuileHero: Bordering on Magnificent Bastard. Although he is extremely powerful, the Stranger is forbidden from directly interfering and must persuade others to do so. * HellOfAHeaven: The {{New 52}} version calls Heaven "my personal hell". This makes a lot of sense, considering his origins at that point. * IHaveManyNames * InexplicablyAwesome: Its part of his entire shtick, though it is lessened a lot in the {{New 52}}. * IntangibleTimeTravel: One of the Stranger's powers. * JokerImmunity: Tannarak. The guy just refuses to ''stop coming back''. * JuryOfTheDamned: The Stranger once had to defend {{Superman}} before one. * MultipleChoicePast: Several ''intentionally'' conflicting origins have been suggested for the Stranger. ** Still in force as of his BlackestNight tie-in. Not only is he neither alive nor dead, but he is something "strange" (this is coming from black rings that in all other cases, with the exception of identifying the White Light, are perfectly accurate at assessing emotional states, life and death, and so on - yet they do not recognize what he is) that even Nekron does not understand. And when a Black Lantern attempts to take his heart, a page is shown of three of the possible origins of the Stranger, followed by the Black Lantern lying on the ground covered in scorch marks (thrown out violently with no harm being done to Stranger) and the Phantom Stranger declaring that the Black Lantern has "seen everything and nothing" of the truth. ** The {{New 52}} provides another possible explanation for what he is: [[spoiler: along with Pandora, the instigator of Flashpoint and the {{New 52}}]], he is one of three sinners that is cursed to watch what they have sowed. The question is this: what did the Phantom Stranger do? [[spoiler:He is later revealed to be ''Judas'', the man who sold out Jesus for 30 pieces of silver. He wears the 30 silver pieces on a necklace that was ''seared'' into his neck (turning his hair white in the process) as part of his punishment.]] * MySignificanceSenseIsTingling * MysteriousPast * NeutralityBacklash: One of the Stranger's possible origins: he was an angel who refused to take sides in the war between Heaven and Hell. Afterward both sides cursed him, and condemned him to be a stranger forever walking the Earth. * NiceHat: He just wouldn't be the same without his fedora. * NoNameGiven: Though in one of his four aforementioned [[MultipleChoicePast multiple choice pasts]] his original name was Isaac; none of the other three, by the way, offer any name. [[spoiler: Averted in his {{New 52}} background, where it's revealed he was Judas.]] * OccultDetective * OlderThanTheyLook: Much, much older. * OurAngelsAreDifferent: In the Stranger's angelic origin it is speculated that he was an angel who might have had a significant impact in the celestial struggle but instead took neither side in the Heavenly Civil War. * Really700YearsOld * RefusingParadise: At the end of the origin story that states he's the original WanderingJew, God tells him he's earned time off for good behavior and can go to heaven now, and he asks to stick around on Earth and keep helping people. * ShroudedInMyth * TheSlowPath: In another of the origins, the Stranger is a man from the distant future traveling home the only way he can. * StableTimeLoop: In the man-from-the-future origin. * StealthHiBye: A venerable master of it. He can even pull off this trick ''right in front'' of someone's eyes. * ToHellAndBack: The Stranger CAN enter Hell- he just isn't welcome there. * TrenchcoatBrigade: See BadassLongcoat above. A member of the TropeMaker. * WalkingTheEarth: All of his origins have him doing this for one reason or another, either out of choice or because he must wait until the end of time to die. * TheWatcher: Sometimes the Stranger merely narrates a story rather than taking an active part in it. (In the Creator/VertigoComics ''MadameXanadu'' series, he insists it is not his place to interfere, except at certain junctures, to specific ends. Madame X concludes that this is an excuse to do whatever he likes and then disappear without dealing with the consequences. Though she isn't exactly an entirely objective observer of his actions, all things being said and done.) ----[[redirect:ComicBook/ThePhantomStranger]]
20th Nov '13 4:27:08 PM TitoMosquito
Is there an issue? Send a Message
# The Stranger is from the far distant future, one of a group of scientists who [[TimeTravelTenseTrouble sought]] to delay the imminent end of the universe using time travel. The Stranger we know (and the Stranger this scientist will one day become) shows up in this future time to help the scientist stop one of his colleagues, an OmnicidalManiac who intended to use their project for the destruction of the universe instead of its preservation. Long story short, the not-yet-Stranger scientist time travels back to the very beginning of the universe where the primal forces of creation (in combination with his own inherent potential, and an apparent passing on of life-force from the dying Stranger-We-Know) transformed him into something more than human. When his own time eventually rolls around, he will [[StableTimeLoop tip his younger self off about his colleague, unlock his potential]], and then, at long last, die. ItMakesSenseInContext.[[note]]]This origin story also is the basis for [[{{ComicBook/JLAAvengers}} Krona]].[[/note]]
to:
# The Stranger is from the far distant future, one of a group of scientists who [[TimeTravelTenseTrouble sought]] to delay the imminent end of the universe using time travel. The Stranger we know (and the Stranger this scientist will one day become) shows up in this future time to help the scientist stop one of his colleagues, an OmnicidalManiac who intended to use their project for the destruction of the universe instead of its preservation. Long story short, the not-yet-Stranger scientist time travels back to the very beginning of the universe where the primal forces of creation (in combination with his own inherent potential, and an apparent passing on of life-force from the dying Stranger-We-Know) transformed him into something more than human. When his own time eventually rolls around, he will [[StableTimeLoop tip his younger self off about his colleague, unlock his potential]], and then, at long last, die. ItMakesSenseInContext.[[note]]]This [[note]]This origin story also is the basis for [[{{ComicBook/JLAAvengers}} [[ComicBook/JLAAvengers Krona]].[[/note]]
18th Nov '13 8:01:36 PM PaulA
Is there an issue? Send a Message
general clean-up, mostly punctuation
The character debuted in ''Phantom Stranger'' vol. 1 #1 (August-September, 1952), created by John Broome and Carmine Infantino. His original series only lasted 6 issues ending in June-July, 1953. He was revived in ''Showcase'' #80 (February, 1969). Then received a second series named after him, which lasted for 41 issues (May-June, 1969 - February-March, 1976). When that series ended, the Stranger started making guest appearances in series devoted to the JusticeLeagueOfAmerica, ''Comicbook/SwampThing'', etc. He has never quite faded away.
to:
The character debuted in ''Phantom Stranger'' vol. 1 #1 (August-September, 1952), created by John Broome and Carmine Infantino. His original series only lasted 6 issues ending in June-July, 1953. He was revived in ''Showcase'' #80 (February, 1969). Then received a second series named after him, which lasted for 41 issues (May-June, 1969 - February-March, 1976). When that series ended, the Stranger started making guest appearances in series devoted to the JusticeLeagueOfAmerica, ''Comicbook/SwampThing'', etc. He has never quite faded away. away.

# The Stranger is from the far distant future, one of a group of scientists who [[TimeTravelTenseTrouble sought]] to delay the imminent end of the universe using time travel. The Stranger we know (and the Stranger this scientist will one day become) shows up in this future time to help the scientist stop one of his colleagues, an OmnicidalManiac who intended to use their project for the destruction of the universe instead of its preservation. Long story short, the not-yet-Stranger scientist time travels back to the very beginning of the universe where the primal forces of creation (in combination with his own inherent potential, and an apparent passing on of life-force from the dying Stranger-We-Know) transformed him into something more than human. When his own time eventually rolls around, he will [[StableTimeLoop tip his younger self off about his colleague, unlock his potential]], and then, at long last, die. ItMakesSenseInContext.[[note]]]This origin story also is the basis for [[{{JLA-Avengers}} Krona]].[[/note]] # The Stranger was an angel who refused to participate in the battle between God and Lucifer. Because of this he was cast out of heaven, but not into Hell (so he's basically half-fallen). He is thus condemned to walk the Earth for all time. This story was written by Creator/AlanMoore, and is generally the most popular interpretation.
to:
# The Stranger is from the far distant future, one of a group of scientists who [[TimeTravelTenseTrouble sought]] to delay the imminent end of the universe using time travel. The Stranger we know (and the Stranger this scientist will one day become) shows up in this future time to help the scientist stop one of his colleagues, an OmnicidalManiac who intended to use their project for the destruction of the universe instead of its preservation. Long story short, the not-yet-Stranger scientist time travels back to the very beginning of the universe where the primal forces of creation (in combination with his own inherent potential, and an apparent passing on of life-force from the dying Stranger-We-Know) transformed him into something more than human. When his own time eventually rolls around, he will [[StableTimeLoop tip his younger self off about his colleague, unlock his potential]], and then, at long last, die. ItMakesSenseInContext.[[note]]]This origin story also is the basis for [[{{JLA-Avengers}} [[{{ComicBook/JLAAvengers}} Krona]].[[/note]] # The Stranger was an angel who refused to participate in the battle between God and Lucifer. Because of this he was cast out of heaven, but not into Hell didn't want him either (so he's basically half-fallen). He is thus condemned to walk the Earth for all time. This story was written by Creator/AlanMoore, and is generally the most popular interpretation.

* TheAgeless * AllPowerfulBystander: At times, it seems like the Stranger should be able to easily solve any problem he has, but for some unknown reason is prevented from intervening directly. * TheAtoner: In one of his {{multiple choice past}}s he was the Wandering Jew, who eventually realized that his curse was actually an opportunity to do good and serve God, and even requested to remain alive longer when given the opportunity to be freed from it.
to:
* TheAgeless TheAgeless * AllPowerfulBystander: At times, it seems like the Stranger should be able to easily solve any problem he has, but for some unknown reason is prevented from intervening directly. directly. * TheAtoner: In one of his {{multiple choice past}}s he was the Wandering Jew, who eventually realized that his curse was actually an opportunity to do good and serve God, and even requested to remain alive longer when given the opportunity to be freed from it.

* BadassLongcoat: Though he traditionally wears a cape, he dons a trench coat in ComicBook/TheBooksOfMagic and [[TrenchcoatBrigade The Trenchcoat Brigade]]
to:
* BadassLongcoat: Though he traditionally wears a cape, he dons a trench coat in ComicBook/TheBooksOfMagic and [[TrenchcoatBrigade The Trenchcoat Brigade]]

* CosmopolitanCouncil: The Stranger was one of the members of "The Quintessence", an alliance of powerful good mystics who watched over the DC Universe... and rarely did anything else. As of current continuity, it's no longer in operation.
to:
* CosmopolitanCouncil: The Stranger was one of the members of "The Quintessence", an alliance of powerful good mystics who watched over the DC Universe... and rarely did anything else. As of current continuity, it's no longer in operation.

* MultipleChoicePast: Several ''intentionally'' conflicting origins have been suggested for the Stranger. ** Still in force as of his BlackestNight tie-in. Not only is he neither alive nor dead, but he is something "strange" (this is coming from black rings that in all other cases, with the exception of identifying the White Light, are perfectly accurate at assessing emotional states, life and death, and so on - yet they do not recognize what he is) that even Nekron does not understand. And when a Black Lantern attempts to take his heart, a page is shown of three of the possible origins of the Stranger, followed by the Black Lantern lying on the ground covered in scorch marks (thrown out violently with no harm being done to Stranger) and the Phantom Stranger declaring that the Black Lantern has "seen everything and nothing" of the truth.
to:
* MultipleChoicePast: Several ''intentionally'' conflicting origins have been suggested for the Stranger. Stranger. ** Still in force as of his BlackestNight tie-in. Not only is he neither alive nor dead, but he is something "strange" (this is coming from black rings that in all other cases, with the exception of identifying the White Light, are perfectly accurate at assessing emotional states, life and death, and so on - yet they do not recognize what he is) that even Nekron does not understand. And when a Black Lantern attempts to take his heart, a page is shown of three of the possible origins of the Stranger, followed by the Black Lantern lying on the ground covered in scorch marks (thrown out violently with no harm being done to Stranger) and the Phantom Stranger declaring that the Black Lantern has "seen everything and nothing" of the truth.

* MySignificanceSenseIsTingling * MysteriousPast * NeutralityBacklash: One of the Stranger's possible origins: he was an angel who refused to take sides in the war between Heaven and Hell. Afterward both sides cursed him, and condemned him to be a stranger forever walking the Earth. * NiceHat: He just wouldn't be the same without his fedora. * NoNameGiven: Though in one of his four aforementioned [[MultipleChoicePast multiple choice pasts]] his original name was Isaac; none of the other three, by the way, offer any name. [[spoiler: Averted in his {{New 52}} background, where it's revealed he was Judas.]] * OccultDetective * OlderThanTheyLook: Much, much older. * OurAngelsAreDifferent: In the Stranger's angelic origin it is speculated that he was an angel who might have had a significant impact in the celestial struggle but instead took neither side in the Heavenly Civil War. * Really700YearsOld * RefusingParadise: At the end of the origin story that states he's the original WanderingJew, God tells him he's earned time off for good behavior and can go to heaven now, and he asks to stick around on Earth and keep helping people. * ShroudedInMyth * TheSlowPath: In another of the origins, the Stranger is a man from the distant future traveling home the only way he can. * StableTimeLoop: In the man-from-the-future origin. * StealthHiBye: A venerable master of it. He can even pull off this trick ''right in front'' of someone's eyes. * ToHellAndBack: The Stranger CAN enter Hell- he just isn't welcome there. * TrenchcoatBrigade: See BadassLongcoat above. A member of the TropeMaker. * WalkingTheEarth: All of his origins have him doing this for one reason or another, either out of choice or because he must wait until the end of time to die. * TheWatcher: Sometimes the Stranger merely narrates a story rather than taking an active part in it. ** In the VertigoComics ''MadameXanadu'' series, he insists it is not his place to interfere, except at certain junctures, to specific ends. Madame X concludes that this is an excuse to do whatever he likes and then disappear without dealing with the consequences. *** Though she isn't exactly an entirely objective observer of his actions, all things being said and done.
to:
* MySignificanceSenseIsTingling MySignificanceSenseIsTingling * MysteriousPast MysteriousPast * NeutralityBacklash: One of the Stranger's possible origins: he was an angel who refused to take sides in the war between Heaven and Hell. Afterward both sides cursed him, and condemned him to be a stranger forever walking the Earth. * NiceHat: He just wouldn't be the same without his fedora. fedora. * NoNameGiven: Though in one of his four aforementioned [[MultipleChoicePast multiple choice pasts]] his original name was Isaac; none of the other three, by the way, offer any name. [[spoiler: Averted in his {{New 52}} background, where it's revealed he was Judas.]] * OccultDetective OccultDetective * OlderThanTheyLook: Much, much older. older. * OurAngelsAreDifferent: In the Stranger's angelic origin it is speculated that he was an angel who might have had a significant impact in the celestial struggle but instead took neither side in the Heavenly Civil War. War. * Really700YearsOld Really700YearsOld * RefusingParadise: At the end of the origin story that states he's the original WanderingJew, God tells him he's earned time off for good behavior and can go to heaven now, and he asks to stick around on Earth and keep helping people. people. * ShroudedInMyth ShroudedInMyth * TheSlowPath: In another of the origins, the Stranger is a man from the distant future traveling home the only way he can. can. * StableTimeLoop: In the man-from-the-future origin. origin. * StealthHiBye: A venerable master of it. He can even pull off this trick ''right in front'' of someone's eyes. * ToHellAndBack: The Stranger CAN enter Hell- he just isn't welcome there. there. * TrenchcoatBrigade: See BadassLongcoat above. A member of the TropeMaker. * WalkingTheEarth: All of his origins have him doing this for one reason or another, either out of choice or because he must wait until the end of time to die. die. * TheWatcher: Sometimes the Stranger merely narrates a story rather than taking an active part in it. ** In it. (In the VertigoComics Creator/VertigoComics ''MadameXanadu'' series, he insists it is not his place to interfere, except at certain junctures, to specific ends. Madame X concludes that this is an excuse to do whatever he likes and then disappear without dealing with the consequences. *** consequences. Though she isn't exactly an entirely objective observer of his actions, all things being said and done.)
18th Nov '13 5:11:53 PM TypoKiller
Is there an issue? Send a Message
It is, of course, entirely possible that none of these are his real origin, but something else entirely is. In fact, considering both the nature of The Stranger and of the DC Universe, it's equally possible that all of them are true, plus however many others you'd care to imagine. (The {{New 52}} has given him a new origin, which is presumably canon for the moment; he was one of three beings punished by the gods of the [[{{Shazam}} Rock of Eternity]] for their sins against magic--heavily implied that he's [[spoiler: [[Literature/TheBible Judas Iscariot]]]].)
to:
It is, of course, entirely possible that none of these are his real origin, but something else entirely is. In fact, considering both the nature of The Stranger and of the DC Universe, it's equally possible that all of them are true, plus however many others you'd care to imagine. (The {{New 52}} has given him a new origin, which is presumably canon for the moment; he was one of three beings punished by the gods of the [[{{Shazam}} Rock of Eternity]] for their sins against magic--heavily magic, and it's heavily implied that he's [[spoiler: [[Literature/TheBible Judas Iscariot]]]].)
18th Nov '13 5:10:24 PM TypoKiller
Is there an issue? Send a Message
# The Stranger is from the far distant future, one of a group of scientists who [[TimeTravelTenseTrouble sought]] to delay the imminent end of the universe using time travel. The Stranger we know (and the Stranger this scientist will one day become) shows up in this future time to help the scientist prevent one of his colleagues, an OmnicidalManiac who intended to use their project for the destruction of the universe instead of its preservation. Long story short, the not-yet-Stranger scientist time travels back to the very beginning of the universe where the primal forces of creation (in combination with his own inherent potential, and an apparent passing on of life-force from the dying Stranger-We-Know) transformed him into something more than human. When his own time eventually rolls around, he will [[StableTimeLoop tip his younger self off about his colleague, unlock his potential]], and then, at long last, die. ItMakesSenseInContext.[[note]]]This origin story also is the basis for [[{{JLA-Avengers}} Krona]].[[/note]]
to:
# The Stranger is from the far distant future, one of a group of scientists who [[TimeTravelTenseTrouble sought]] to delay the imminent end of the universe using time travel. The Stranger we know (and the Stranger this scientist will one day become) shows up in this future time to help the scientist prevent stop one of his colleagues, an OmnicidalManiac who intended to use their project for the destruction of the universe instead of its preservation. Long story short, the not-yet-Stranger scientist time travels back to the very beginning of the universe where the primal forces of creation (in combination with his own inherent potential, and an apparent passing on of life-force from the dying Stranger-We-Know) transformed him into something more than human. When his own time eventually rolls around, he will [[StableTimeLoop tip his younger self off about his colleague, unlock his potential]], and then, at long last, die. ItMakesSenseInContext.[[note]]]This origin story also is the basis for [[{{JLA-Avengers}} Krona]].[[/note]]
18th Nov '13 5:09:35 PM TypoKiller
Is there an issue? Send a Message
# After a biblical event in which God punished a bunch of people, the Stranger was a good man who was spared his wrath. He questions God's actions and commits suicide. The angel who delivered him to safety punished him by barring him from the afterlife, resurrecting his body, and condemning him to walk the earth, saving people one soul at a time. The angel may or may not have been ComicBook/TheSpectre.
to:
# After a biblical event in which God punished a bunch of people, the Stranger was a good man who was spared his wrath. He questions God's actions and commits suicide. The angel who delivered him to safety punished him by barring him from the afterlife, resurrecting his body, and condemning him to walk the earth, Earth, saving people one soul at a time. The angel may or may not have been ComicBook/TheSpectre.

# The Stranger was an angel who refused to participate in the battle between God and Lucifer. Because of this he was cast out of heaven, but not into Hell (so he's basically half-fallen). He is thus condemned to walk the earth for all time. This story was written by Creator/AlanMoore, and is generally the most popular interpretation.
to:
# The Stranger was an angel who refused to participate in the battle between God and Lucifer. Because of this he was cast out of heaven, but not into Hell (so he's basically half-fallen). He is thus condemned to walk the earth Earth for all time. This story was written by Creator/AlanMoore, and is generally the most popular interpretation.
30th Oct '13 8:56:46 PM nombretomado
Is there an issue? Send a Message
* BadassLongcoat: Though he traditionally wears a cape, he dons a trench coat in TheBooksOfMagic and [[TrenchcoatBrigade The Trenchcoat Brigade]]
to:
* BadassLongcoat: Though he traditionally wears a cape, he dons a trench coat in TheBooksOfMagic ComicBook/TheBooksOfMagic and [[TrenchcoatBrigade The Trenchcoat Brigade]]
29th Sep '13 5:15:38 AM zzedar
Is there an issue? Send a Message
* BadassLongcoat: Though he traditionally wears a cape, he dons a trench coat in BooksOfMagic and [[TrenchcoatBrigade The Trenchcoat Brigade]]
to:
* BadassLongcoat: Though he traditionally wears a cape, he dons a trench coat in BooksOfMagic TheBooksOfMagic and [[TrenchcoatBrigade The Trenchcoat Brigade]]
31st Aug '13 3:22:26 PM Gregzilla
Is there an issue? Send a Message
Added DiffLines:
* HellOfAHeaven: The {{New 52}} version calls Heaven "my personal hell". This makes a lot of sense, considering his origins at that point.
31st Aug '13 3:16:15 PM Gregzilla
Is there an issue? Send a Message
* FaceFramedInShadow
to:
* FaceFramedInShadow FaceFramedInShadow: He doesn't wear a mask, but no matter what type of hat he's wearing it always casts a shadow over the top half of his face to achieve the same effect. [[InexplicablyAwesome Even when he's not wearing a hat at all.]]

* InexplicablyAwesome.
to:
* InexplicablyAwesome.InexplicablyAwesome: Its part of his entire shtick, though it is lessened a lot in the {{New 52}}.
This list shows the last 10 events of 68. Show all.