Comic Book / DC Comics Bombshells

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DC Comics Bombshells, or simply Bombshells, is a 2015 digital-first comic series published by DC Comics. Obviously.

Inspired by DC's "Bombshells" line of variant covers and collectible statues depicting their female (and sometimes male) characters in the style of 1940s pinups, Bombshells is set in an alternate universe where all the world's superheroes are women fighting for freedom and justice during World War II.

When the series starts, Kate Kane is Batwoman, the masked captain of a female baseball league who moonlights as the protector of Gotham. She is soon recruited by Commander Amanda Waller to join her squadron of Bombshells, a team which makes use of "unexpected and unsuspected resources", thrusting her into a world of WWII-era intrigue and espionage.

Other stories include:

This series is written by Marguerite Bennett and illustrated by rotating artists, some of which include Marguerite Sauvage and Ming Doyle.

The series ended in 2017 after 100 digital chapters, but was immediately relaunched as Bombshells United, still in the same continuity but with a new focus on the darker side of the Allies' real-world actions during the war.

Compare with Ame-Comi Girls and Gotham City Garage, other DC Elseworlds series inspired by lines of collectible statues starring DC female heroes and villains. Also compare to Marvel's A-Force, another superhero comic focussing on female characters which was co-created by Bennett.


DC Comics Bombshells provides examples of:

  • Action Girl: As to be expected in a series about superheroines, anti-heroines, and villainesses.
  • Adaptational Badass: Hugo Strange, who has had his badass moments but is generally considered an under-rated villain in the mainstream continuity, is the top villain in the USA-set subplots.
  • Adaptation Expansion: The original "Bombshell" properties were only stylized character designs for use as alternate covers and statue models, with no story or plot associated with them. The comic series creates backstories for each character to fit into the time frame and crafts an over-arching plot to connect them all. Compare to Ame-Comi Girls, another series of digital-first comics based on sexy collectors' statues that bombed after two story arcs.
  • Adaptational Heroism:
    • Harley Quinn fell in love (according to her) with her "Mr. J" when he was a Friendly Neighborhood Gangster with Just Like Robin Hood overtones, and was saddened when he later turned thoroughly evil.
    • Poison Ivy is a French botanist who only used her powers violently to oppose the German occupier.
    • Raven's father Trigon is re-imagined as a Nature Spirit who genuinely loved her mother, instead of a demon who either callously seduced, or outright raped, her.
    • Harvey Dent remains on the side of right after losing half of his face.
    • Killer Croc is still a morally dubious guy, but much more likable and less evil than he usually is in the mainstream comics.
  • Adaptational Name Change: A bunch of characters have their names changed here to fit their new backstories.
    • Supergirl's identity is Kara Starikov and Stargirl's is Kortni Duginovna, having been recreated as being from the USSR. 'Kortni' is phonetically similar to "Courtney", her name in the mainstream DCU. The man who raised them (and built the cosmic rod) is Ipati Dugin, phonetically similar to Pat Dugan, regular Stargirl's stepfather. It is ultimately revealed that Kortni's name actually is Courtney Whitmore, as her biological father was an Englishman and her mother Russified the foreign name to its Russian version. "Starikov", meanwhile, is reminiscent of Power Girl's secret ID as Karen Starr.
    • Selina Kyle becomes Selina Digatti, rather than the Calabrese surname she is sometimes associated with in mainstream continuity. "Gatti" means "cats" in Italian.
    • Brother Night's real name is changed from 'Eldon Peck' to 'Edel Nacht', which is German for 'Precious Night'.
    • Lois and Lucy Lane are actually named Eloisa and Lucia Lane. "Lois" and "Lucy" are apparently just the Anglicized versions of their names.
    • Mary Batson is Miriam Bätzel, and gains her powers when she becomes inspired to combine the names of Old Testament heroines into "Shazam", thus becoming Miri Marvel.
    • Roy Harper is Rudi Härpfer.
    • Zinda Blake is Zinda Bleier.
  • Adaptational Nationality: In this reality, Supergirl and Stargirl are Russians, Zatanna Zatara is Jewish/Romani, Catwoman is Italian, Harley Quinn is English, Poison Ivy is French, Kimiyo Hoshi is Japanese-American, Huntress, Raven, Miri Marvel, Speedy, and Lady Blackhawk are Germans, and Aquaman is Irish.
  • Adaptational Sexuality: Kimiyo Hoshi and Barda are straight in the mainstream continuity, but are lesbian lovers here. Mera is heavily implied to be bisexual and to have been in a semi-sexual relationship with Diana, aka Wonder Woman. Vixen and Hawkgirl are also a couple.
    • Lois and Kara are immediately taken with each other.
  • Adaptational Villainy: A prominent heroine, the Barbara Gordon Batgirl, is a vampire in this continuity. At best, she's a seriously brutal Anti-Hero.
  • Adult Fear: Kate and Rene losing their son to Cheetah.
  • All Lesbians Want Kids: Played with. When Batwoman stumbles across Helena, who in this continuity is the leader of the German Youth Resistance and the lead singer/guitarist in a Swing band, her narration reflects that she and Maggie had discussed getting dogs, but maybe it would be better if they could have kids. She wonders if they could just adopt Helena.
    • Back in the Spanish Civil War, Kate and Renee took a young orphan, Jasón, under their wing.
  • Alternate Company Equivalent: The Bombshells version of Vixen is the queen of an advanced African nation that was never conquered or colonised by European powers - in other words, she's a gender-flipped version of Marvel's Black Panther.
  • Amazon Brigade:
    • The Bombshells themselves seem to be an all-female organization. Waller's description makes it clear that their intention is to use super-powers and super-technology in the war against the Axis, but Kate Kane takes it as just another way of saying that they will use the women the mainline military forces ignore.
    • Inspired by Batwoman, a group of girls assume her costume and begin calling themselves 'the Batgirls', adding new girls to their number as they encounter them. When they induct two boys into their group they change their name to "Bat Family".
  • Ancient Astronauts: Shiera is introduced as a heavy opponent of such theories, believing that they are due to racist disbelief in the capabilities of non-white cultures. Then it turns out that the Thanagarians invaded Earth in the past, that she is of Thanagarian descent, and that her girlfriend's amulet is Thanagarian tech.
  • Ascended Fanboy: When Batwoman joins the Bombshells and leaves Gotham city, a group of girls assume her costume and her role as crimefighter. Calling themselves the Batgirls, their numbers start at three, quickly become four, then five, and then explode to eight (Including boys), now calling themselves the Bat Family.
  • Ambiguously Bi: Diana and Mera shared their first kiss, and both have shown interest in members of the opposite sex (Steve Trevor and Arthur Curry respectively). Mera's talk with Steve after his first kiss with Diana can be read as either coming from a close friend or an amicable ex.
  • An Ice Person: Killer Frost, here a German ski bunny.
  • Band of Brothers: Mera grows extremely close to the sailors crewing the ships that she accompanies, and they in turn to her. They share stories of home and their girls back home, and during combat she remarks about how important it is to herself that she protect them from danger.
  • Batter Up!: Batwoman, whose costume is a Palette Swap of her baseball uniform, uses a standard baseball bat as her weapon while fighting crime. When she joins the Bombshells she is given high-technology devices to work with, but they are designed to look like baseballs and bats to continue the theme.
  • Beard of Sorrow: Steve grows a beard during his imprisonment, due to his lack of a razor, but keeps it after his escape. He suffers from PTSD.
  • Bi the Way: John Constantine, as he is in the regular DCU.
    • Harley and Ivy as always.
    • Diana and Mera as well.
    • Selina was not averse to a threesome
  • Big Bad: While the Axis Powers instigate the conflict, technically making Adolf Hitler the Big Bad, certain members of the Gestapo make bargains with The King Beneath The Black, whose hand-picked lieutenants steer events in their lord's favour, in exchange for power.
  • Big Damn Kiss:
    • In issue 11, after developing a mutual respect and affection, Diana and Steve finally kiss.
    • Issue 41 has one between Harley and Ivy.
  • Bilingual Bonus: The Nazi zombie soldiers are called "tenebrae", which is latin for "Shadows" or "Darkness".
  • Birth/Death Juxtaposition: During the Battle of London, one of the sailors' wives is in labour. She gives birth after Stargirl sacrifices herself to kill Edel Nacht's titan.
  • Bittersweet Ending: The first year of the war ends on a mixed note. Zatanna turns on the Joker's Daughter and saves Batwoman, Catwoman, Huntress, and the Jews of the Berlin Ghetto, but she and Constantine are caught and stripped of their magic by Tenebrus the Binder. Mera is able to kill another Titan of the Tenebrae, but loses the rest of her powers and is captured by the Atlantean army. The Titan Among Titans is destroyed, along with its creator Edel Nacht, but at the cost of Stargirl's life, devastating Supergirl. The Battle of London is won, but Waller is quick to point out that the war is still very much on.
  • Boobs-and-Butt Pose: Averted on each cover, which is especially notable given the title's cheesecakey roots.
  • Boomerang Bigot: The people running Pinkney's Orphanage are Jewish-American Nazis, something the Batgirls (One of whom is herself Jewish) have trouble wrapping their minds around. They justify it by saying that the Nazis have the right idea about keeping themselves pure and free from immigrants and foreigners, and that they will keep America free from the "swarms and floods of foreigners".
  • Brought Down to Normal: In some cases. Killing regular Tenebrae has no effect, but killing one of their titans damages the killer's inner self. Mera kills two of them, and loses all of her powers as a result. In an entirely different case, when Zatanna finally defies the Joker's Daughter, Tenebrus the Binder responds by stripping her and Constantine of their magic.
  • Cain and Abel: Played With between Mera and her sister Siren. Up until reaching Atlantis Mera believed her sister to be as much a victim as the rest of the Atlantian populace. She even blamed herself for not giving Siren the love she so desperately craved. Siren on the other hand felt that she had finally achieved all she wanted and that Mera once again was going to take it from her. But as the two fight we see that Siren actually blames herself for Atlantis' problems and her fight with Mera seems to be in hopes that Mera will kill her to atone for what she has done. Luckily Mera is able to get her to see reason and the two reconcile.
  • Call-Back: Diana discusses constellations with Steve when she helps him escape from Themyscira. After the Battle of London, she and Steve comfort Supergirl after Stargirl's sacrifice, by saying that there will be a new constellation in her honour.
  • The Cameo: Hal Jordan appears for a single short scene as a pilot stationed in the United Kingdom. He flirts with Harley Quinn before she knocks him out to steal his plane.
  • Canon Immigrant:
  • Cardboard Prison: The barred metal doors to the rooms/cells in Dr. Harleen Quinzel's hospital are either not locked at all, or have locks so weak that they can be pried open with a broken piece of wood (The panel as drawn when a patient escapes is unclear as to whether there is an active lock or not). Either way, the escape requires no effort and is effected in a manner of seconds.
  • Cast Full of Gay: The series is full of female characters who are canonically lesbian or bisexual in the main DC universe, and also gives many of the others an Adaptational Sexuality shift up the Kinsey Scale.
  • Clark Kenting: Batwoman's crime-fighting costume is only a palette swaped version of her professional baseball uniform, which even includes a mask on the baseball field. Her baseball fans are easily able to make the connection between the two masked women, and from there even deduce Kate Kane's real identity.
  • Classy Cat-Burglar: Catwoman runs an international smuggling ring while simultaneously working as an operative for the Bombshells, all under the umbrella of her role as a high-society countess and socialite.
  • The Commissioner Gordon: Maggie Sawyer is known amongst Batwoman's Gotham fans as "Batwoman's detective", and works with her against the criminals of the city.
  • Composite Character: The Reaper that the Batgirls fight is a combination of Year Two's Reaper and the titular character from Batman: Mask of the Phantasm
  • Da Chief: Amanda Waller runs the Bombshells and personally recruited Batwoman into the organization.
  • Defector from Decadence: Defied by Supergirl and Stargirl. They have been forced to turn against the military due to the actions of General Anton Arkayn, but still call themselves Soviet and refuse to wear the Americanized costumes Waller wants to give them.
  • Differently Powered Individual: "Bombshells" is the code-name for Amanda Waller's secret organization, and has become associated with super-powered individuals in general by people who are aware of the project.
  • Dirty Cop: There is a Gotham City beat cop who is paid off by the local slumlords to keep control of the poor immigrants in the area, and who also sells children to an Orphanage of Fear. Naturally, the Batgirls come after him for both problems.
  • Distaff Counterpart: Many of the characters were originally created to play off of pre-existing male characters in comics, but those male characters do not exist in this universe. The characters that acted as sidekicks, partners or love interests to male superheroes (Supergirl, Stargirl, Batwoman, Mera) are instead wholly independent.
  • Divide and Conquer: Briefly. When Harleen Quinzel first reverts to her Harley Quinn persona she goes to a bar and begins dancing with all of the attractive women, getting the men angry and starting a fight at the loss of 'their' women. Harley then withdraws and leaves all of the men to fight amongst themselves, and Hal Jordan pops up to remark that he had never thought of this strategy: By letting the men fight each other, that leaves him (Or, in this case, Harley) to easily sweep up the women afterwards.
  • Due to the Dead: After one battle between the Allies and the Axis, Wonder Woman stayed behind on the field while the rest of the Allies regrouped afterwards. When Steve Trevor asks her what she had been doing, she explained that she was burying all of the villager civilians that had been slaughtered by the Nazis before the battle. They deserved to go to the afterlife with more than just the touch of an enemy as their last contact on Earth.
  • Ethical Slut: Downplayed with Mera. In addition to using her superpowers in combat, Mera entertains sailors and soldiers by singing, dancing and putting on shows. Supergirl condescends to her using her appearance in such a manner, but Mera retorts that her body and her powers are her own to use as she sees fit. Her beauty and performances helps raise morale and assists her compatriots in weathering the grueling trials of war, and she is happy to do so.
  • Even Evil Has Loved Ones: Penguin is genuinely in love with Killer Frost.
  • Even the Girls Want Her: Sort of expected with the volume of lesbian heroes, but Batwoman stands out: Maggie Sawyer is her current girlfriend, Renee Montoya is an ex, and Helena, Selina, and Cheetah have all made passes at her.
  • Everyone Is Bi: Most of the Bombshells, and much of the supporting cast, are gay or bisexual.
  • Evil Is Petty: Cheetah killed Jasón because she was jealous of the love his adopted mothers furnished on him.
  • Expy: Franchine Davis for everyone's favorite Adventure Archaeologist, being the one who recovered the Ark of the Covenant for Amanda Waller.
  • Family of Choice:
    • The Batgirls started as close friends and co-workers, and as new Batgirls were added to the team they were adopted into the group. When their numbers grew to eight, including boys, they began calling themselves a Bat Family.
    • Kate and Renee grew to love Jason as a son during their time together.
  • Fatal Family Photo: When Aquawoman joins a US Navy ship at sea, several of the sailors show her photographs of the women they have at home. When the ship almost immediately comes under attack Mera goes to its defense and explains that she would not let their women become widows.
  • Feminist Fantasy: Though the overall culture of the 1940's has not been altered from reality—meaning women get no respect—all of the superpowers and technology are possessed and wielded by women, to the point where there do not actually seem to be any male superheroes in this reality. With the 'traditional' male-dominated militaries slaughtering each other, it is up to the Bombshells to affect dramatic change.
  • Final Solution:
    • At this period in the war, Germany has enacted their laws on racial segregation and already begun their transportation and preparations for the Holocaust. Characters in the United States need to deal with Jewish refugees fleeing Europe, along with what awaits those who cannot escape.
    • In two issues, Batwoman stops the liquidation of the Berlin Ghetto, once in 1940, and again a few months later in early 1941, with a collection of Jewish superheroes, including herself.
  • 5 Bad Band: The King Beneath The Black and his servants.
    • Big Bad: The King Beneath The Black, an Eldritch Abomination whose minions have previously been turned back by the Amazons and the Atlanteans.
    • The Dragon / The Heavy: Baroness Paula Von Gunther, a former German noble who wishes to conquer Themyscira, rule it as her barony, and protect those people who swear themselves to her.
    • The Brute: King Nereus of Atlantis, whose armies are nearly as dangerous as the Tenebrae and who views the King as the lesser of two evils when compared to surface dwellers.
    • The Evil Genius: Edward Nygma, a brilliant scientist who feels himself exploited by far less intelligent nobles, and who wants to experiment on Supergirl.
    • The Dark Chick: The Joker's Daughter, an Evil Sorcerer who runs a cabaret in Berlin and who facilitates the deal between the King and the Nazis.
  • Five Batgirl Band: The Batgirls achieve this by the time of the Pinkney Orphanage raid.
    • The Leader: Kathy Duquesne, due to her experience corralling people.
    • The Lancer: Bette Kane, due to her having a different perspective than the others (rich vs. poor).
    • The Big Guy: Nell Little, who is a beast behind the wheel (and made the Batmobile).
    • The Smart Guy: Harper Row, who invents all of the other gadgets they use (and had the Batgirls idea in the first place).
    • The Chick: Alysia Yeoh, who provides flair and flowers.
    • Sixth Ranger: Felicity Smoak, Tim Drake, and Cullen Row. If comics portrayals hold true, Felicity and Tim will become additional Smart Guys, while Cullen becomes The Heart. They are later joined by a teenaged Lois Lane, who is their personal newsgirl/reporter.
    • The Mentor: Maggie works with them to clean up the city, and eventually lets them live in her building.
  • Foe Romance Subtext: Between Zatanna and The Joker's Daughter. While JD is horribly obsessed with Zatanna and making her into a slave, there is also slight hints that she is genuinely in love with her. Zatanna also has moments where it seems she loves Joker's Daughter. After stripping Joker's Daughter of her powers, Zatanna sings her a song about lost love that leaves JD in tears. As Zatanna flies away she holds back tears of her own.
  • Foolish Cousin, Responsible Cousin: Kate Kane isn't foolish, but her love of adventure and general carelessness towards the people she loves has led her to trust the wrong people. Her younger cousin Bette, while equally adventurous, has to clean up the mess.
  • Ghostapo: Nazi officer Edel Nacht is trying to use dark magic to create an undead army for Nazi Germany.
  • Girl in a Box: Lois Lane's first appearance in the series has her being freed from a crate by the Batgirls. It turns out Killer Frost had her men lock Lois up after they caught her snooping around one of their operations.
  • Glamorous Wartime Singer: Mera entertains sailors and soldiers by singing, dancing and putting on shows, and her powers allow her to create large illusions to watch.
    • Zatanna sings in a Berlin cabaret.
  • Happily Adopted: Supergirl fears that she is not a "real" member of her family because she is not a blood relation to either her mother or sister, and that it would be better for them if she left. Her family, however, refuse such an assertion and proclaim that she is part of their family, regardless of blood.
  • Heel–Face Turn:
    • The German prisoners of war who turn against the Reich for its alliance with the Tenebrae.
    • Harvey Dent is introduced as a villain, but it turns out to be mind-control.
  • Heroic Sacrifice: Twice, in the Battle of London. Mera kills her second Titan, knowing that she will lose the rest of her powers. She also gets captured by the Atlanteans afterwards. Later, Stargirl sacrifices her life to kill the greater Titan formed by Edel Nacht.
  • Hide Your Lesbians:
    • Averted. In spite of the setting's era, and references to the fact that homophobia does exist, Kate Kane and Maggie Sawyer are live-in girlfriends with no effort made to hide their relationship from the reader. Kate also had a wild relationship with Renee Montoya during the Spanish Civil War
    • Likewise, while it isn't initially clear, it's later revealed that Kimiyo Hoshi and Big Barda are dating. They kiss in the middle of a battle without any worry that they might be seen.
    • Diana and Mera are hinted as having had a non-platonic relationship in the past. Its not hidden but its is subtler than the above relationships.
  • Historical In-Joke: After Mari McCabe wins gold running in the 1936 Olympics, Hitler briefly turns to her but recoils, embarrassed, from shaking the hand of the African woman who bested his athlete — a reference to the infamous urban legend that Hitler personally snubbed Jesse Owens rather than congratulate him.
  • Homage Shot: The final page of the issue that introduced the Bat Family is a recreation of Lunch atop a Skyscraper, the famous photograph of construction workers eating lunch while sitting on a girder. The Batgirls, including one Robin, are all sitting together atop a skyscraper.
  • Honor Before Reason: More like Lack of Honor Before Reason: When Wonder Woman stops Allied soldiers from executing captive Germans, General Lane says that he knows it would hobble himself to try and exact punishment against her, but that he will do so anyway because insubordination requires punishment.
  • I'm Taking Her Home with Me!:
    • When Batwoman stumbles across Helena, who performs with an underground Swing band and immediately begins fighting with a crossbow when undead Nazis storm the event, she wonders if she and Maggie can adopt her.
    • When the kidnapped Lois Lane is rescued by the Batgirls, Felicity excitedly asks "Can we keep her?"
  • Informed Judaism: A surprising number of the heroes are Jewish. Batwoman, Harley Quinn, Zatanna, Raven, and Miri Marvel. Of them, only Miriam is in any way devout. Back home, Felicity Smoak is also Jewish.
  • It's Personal: Batwoman is Jewish, so has personal reasons to hate the Nazi regime beyond moral opposition. When she is interrogating a Gotham City smuggler who was selling information to the Nazis on where to find Jews trying to escape Europe, he attempts to deflect her rage by saying that a man "was just a Jew", only for her to reply (In a word ballon that is bursting its borders with spikes) "So am I."
  • Magic Music:
    • Mera can control her powers by singing. She does not have to, but often chooses to as a way of showing off. This is why there are not specific or set spells, but rather the songs come from the situations she finds herself in.
    • Zatanna can also cast spells while singing, in addition to her traditional backwards speech.
  • Major Injury Underreaction: The Joker's Daughter loses a hand to Harley Quinn. Her response? To laugh her head off.
  • Make-Out Kids: Harley and Pamela, compared to the sometimes tense relationship they have in other incarnations, simply can't keep their hands off each other. The same goes for Mari and Shiera.
  • Making a Splash: In addition to controlling sea life, Mera can manipulate water itself while singing.
  • Maligned Mixed Marriage: Hugo Strange calls Lois and Lucy "Halfbreeds" because they have a white father and a Cuban mother.
  • Medium Awareness: Harley makes quips she could only make if she knew she was in a comic book, much to everyone else's confusion.
  • Mistreatment-Induced Betrayal: Supergirl and Stargirl were raised to be loyal citizens of the Soviet Union, but when their powers were discovered by authorities they were suspected of traitorous designs. Their parents were held hostage against their good behavior, and they were eventually driven to final desertion when they were ordered to destroy a Soviet prison that had been mocked up to look like a Nazi base.
  • My Girl Back Home:
    • Kate Kane has Maggie Sawyer waiting for her back in Gotham City, hoping that she will be able to return home soon.
    • When Aquawoman joins a US Navy ship at sea, she looks at the photographs of the women that the sailors have back at home and promises that she will tell the men where to find secret sea treasures to bring home.
  • Mythology Gag:
    • In the first issue, Batwoman saves the lives of Thomas and Martha Wayne during a robbery when they are leaving a theater with their son, Bruce. This appears to prevent the tragic origin of Batman, but could also reference To Kill A Legend, an Elseworlds story where the Phantom Stranger sent Batman and Robin to another Earth to save the Waynes. That Bruce would also grow to become Batman, but that choice was made out of awe and gratitude, not grief and rage.
    • Stargirl and Supergirl are from the USSR and were raised to love their country, albeit with reasonable wariness towards the government. In the Elseworlds story Superman: Red Son, Superman landed in the USSR instead of the USA and was raised there.
    • On multiple occasions, Harper Row sings the theme song from the 1960's Batman TV show as she herself leaps into action, changing the final syllable as needed for different situations.
    Na-Na-Na-Na-Na-Na-Na-Na BATFAN!
    • The leader of the Batgirls is named Kathy DuQuesne, the same name as a character created for the DCAU animated movie Batman: Mystery of the Batwoman. In that movie, her name was itself a wink to Kate Kane herself.
    • Likewise, Ellen Yin from The Batman appears as one of Maggie's fellow police detectives.
    • The character of Big Barda, from the New Gods, is introduced as "'Big Barda' Free". The surname 'Free' comes from Scott Free (Mr. Miracle), her husband.
    • When the group of girls that dress as Batwoman grows to eight members, including boys dressed as Robin, they call themselves "A Bat Family". The term "Bat Family" is used both by fans and also official sources to refer to the cast of characters associated with Batman and Gotham City.
    • Harley's description of how Mr. J began as a Neighborhood Friendly Gangster but turned truly evil is reminiscent of the Joker's change from his wacky prankster Silver Age persona to a wacky homicidal maniac in the Bronze Age and later.
    • In this continuity, Harvey Dent is the Mayor of Gotham. The first words said about him? "I believe in Harvey Dent." Those are the Arc Words from The Long Halloween.
    • In a reversal from traditional canon, Barbara Gordon is a vampire, and she does something horrible to the Joker.
    • Batwoman and Renee Montoya had an unofficially adopted orphan boy in the Spanish Civil War who was killed by a sniper. His name was Jasón, named after the notoriously (for a long time) dead Robin Jason Todd.
      • And, in a reversal of Batman's origin story, it's Jasón's death which spurs Kate to become Batwoman.
  • Neutral No Longer: Catwoman is not affiliated with the Axis, despite being Italian, but has no interest in helping the Allies either. One of her thefts leads her to change her mind. She discovers kryptonite, and she makes contact with Amanda Waller as a result.
  • Never Be a Hero: Downplayed when Harper Row saves Batwoman from an attacker. Batwoman thanks Harper for her assistance, and gives Harper an autograph and her own broken bat as a souvenir, but also asks Harper to promise that she will go home and not try to become a superhero herself. Batwoman says she should leave it to the adults.
  • No Celebrities Were Harmed: Harvey Dent's initial role as a fascist bigot (due to being under Hugo Strange's mind control) is an unsubtle caricature of Donald Trump.
  • Non-Powered Costumed Hero: Batwoman has no superpowers or advanced technology to supplement her physical abilities, when she fights crime in Gotham City she is just a woman in a costume wielding a baseball bat.
  • Nothing Personal: He does not say the Stock Phrase, but a smuggler who had been selling information to the Nazis tried to deflect Batwoman's anger by saying that one man is not worth getting worked up over because he "was just a Jew". Unbeknownst to him, so is Batwoman.
  • Obligatory War-Crime Scene: In Greece, Wonder Woman has to stop Allied soldiers from executing captured German prisoners. They make the point that Germans have done worse, and Wonder Woman makes the point that that is the reason they need to be better than the Nazis.
  • The One That Got Away: Issue #8 reveals that Stargirl's biological father was an English nobleman that had been traveling through the USSR and met her mother. They were forced apart by the Russian family that her mother was working for/traveling with, and when Stargirl goes to meet him in London he reveals that there had never been another woman after he was separated from her mother.
  • Orphanage of Fear: Ever since Kate Kane stepped away from heading Kane corporation, Pinkney's Orphanage became a hellish locale explicitly called a prison for children. The children were forced to work slave labor, and it turns out the leaders were Jewish-American Nazis.
  • Painted-On Pants: Lois Lane's only exposed skin is her hands and throat, but she keeps the "pin-up" inspiration alive by wearing clothes that look like she had to be sewn into them.
  • Painting the Medium: When a Gotham City smuggler attempts to deflect Batwoman's rage by saying that a man "was just a Jew", Batwoman's speech bubble is ringed with red that is burst with spikes as she replies "So am I."
  • Passing the Torch: On her last day of crimefighting in Gotham City before going away with the Bombshells, Batwoman gives Harper Row the broken handle of her bat after Harper had intervened to save Batwoman from an attack from behind. She only meant it as a souvenir, and asked Harper to promise that she would go home and leave crimefighting to the adults, but it helped inspire her to start the Batgirls with her friends.
  • Passionate Sports Girl: Kate is the captain of a team playing for an all-female, WWII-era baseball league, and her cousin, Bette Kane, plays for an opposing team. Kate's activities as Batwoman inspire many young girls to copy her uniform and superheroics as Batgirls.
  • Pietà Plagiarism: Kate holding Jasón after his death in Spain, also a Homage to Jason Todd's death in A Death in the Family and Kara Zor-El's in Crisis on Infinite Earths.
  • Politically Correct History:
    • Though general attitudes are portrayed as they were in real life, the main characters are afforded opportunities that were unavailable for years (In some cases decades) after the time of the series. Amanda Waller, an African-American woman, is a Commander in the US Navy at a time when African-Americans were only allowed to enlist in the US Navy as messmen.
    • There is no racism or classism amongst the Batgirls, which include white, black, Jewish, and Singaporean members, who also represent the immigrant poor, the working class, and the rich.
    • The writer said this was intentional, as she wanted to make up for the under representation of minorities in most movies, books, and TV shows about World War 2.
    • There's still a Roosevelt in the White House, but it's Eleanor, not Franklin Delano.
  • The Power of Rock: Well, ten years too early for that, but Helena has the Power of Swing.
  • Psycho Lesbian: The Joker's Daughter uses Zatanna as a battery to further augment her own considerable magical powers, but the interest she displays is... not so platonic.
  • Race Lift: Lois and Lucy Lane are biracial with a Cuban mother. Their real names are apparently "Eloisa" and "Lucia".
  • Rebellious Princess: Diana defies her mother's direct command in order to save Steve Trevor and then join the Allies. Mera is interested in fun and adventure. It is revealed that she is in fact an exile, and has nowhere left to go.
  • Red Right Hand: One of Joker's Daughter's hands is left blackened and burned looking thanks to her deal with the Tenebrae. She also has really awful-looking teeth.
  • Related in the Adaptation: Supergirl and Stargirl are unconnected in the main DC continuity, except for the occasional team-up. They are sisters in this series.
  • Retcanon: The book often incorporates elements from adaptations, such as Felicity Smoak being Jewish (an idea created for Arrow), the entire character of Kathy Duquesne (who as mentioned above, was created for the Mystery of the Batwoman movie), and of course, the use of the 60's Batman theme song.
  • Rhetorical Question Blunder: When Kate Kane directly asks Alexander Luthor and Selina Digatti what all their playful banter and flirting means, and if they are asking her to join a ménage à trois, she is unprepared for Selina to calmly say "Sure, why not?" Kate can only say "...eee" before Selina laughs the situation off.
  • Riding the Bomb: Harley Quinn does this on one of the covers. She then does it in the comic. The bomb, unknown to her, was a dud.
  • Royals Who Actually Do Something: Diana and Mera join the war effort when their respective nations generally decide to stay out of the conflict. Atlantis eventually joins... the Axis.
  • Saying Sound Effects Out Loud: In her first attempt at crimefighting, Harper Row says "BAM!" when she kicks a guy, then says "POW!" when Batwoman clobbers a guy with her bat (The actual sound effects written in the comic were "WHAM" and "CRK!" respectively). Afterwards, Batwoman tells her that she does not need to say the sound effects herself.
  • Shell-Shocked Veteran: Steve Trevor.
  • Ship Tease: Kate Kane, who is a lesbian, is unsure if Selina Digatti is just exchanging playful witty banter or is honestly flirting with her. The addition of Alexander Luthor further confuses the matter with his own simultaneous banter, and at one point Kate directly asks if she is being courted by one of them, or if the two of them are asking her to join a ménage à trois. Selina's Sure, Let's Go with That response does not clarify matters.
  • Shout-Out:
    • The all-female, WWII-era baseball league Kate Kane plays for is based on A League of Their Own, which was in turn based on real life leagues that formed when the men were away at war.
    • When Batwoman is active in Germany, she stumbles across an underground dance hall of teenagers dancing to swing music. Swing Kids dramatized the use of swing music by German youth as symbolic rebellion against the Nazi regime, which had banned the style as a foreign corruption.
    • When reminiscing about her troubled upbringing, Harley says there weren't any "Pulpy tattoo-happy space prisons" for girls like her to be sent to.
    • Harley Quinn tells some Nazis to "get stuffed."
    • Felicity Smoak clarifies to a Mook that they're Batgirls, not "lumberjanes."
    • When Harley and Ivy leave Atlantis, Harley makes a joke about them being pioneers leaving for the frontier. Ivy replies with a comment about dying of dysentery.
  • So Proud of You: Hippolyta's bodyguards, Episteme and Techne, initially fight Diana when she comes to steal the royal armour and bracelets, but they reveal that they approve of her actions and will lead the Amazons to her side when she calls for them.
  • Starter Villain: There are two in the first year of the war: Edel Nacht for the Bombshells in Europre, and Headmistress Katharine Webb-Kane for the Batgirls in the home front. They are legitimately dangerous, but ultimately overshadowed by other villains (the King Beneath The Black and the rest of his 5 Bad Band, and Hugo Strange respectively.)
  • Stay in the Kitchen: Overall gender norms and expectations have not been changed from reality, meaning that characters in the 1940's United States and the United Kingdom believe that women should remain in the home and should have 'find a husband' as their life goal. As in real life, it is only the Soviet Union that trains and deploys significant numbers of women in their armed forces.
  • Sure, Let's Go with That: After the ongoing playful banter and flirting between the three of them, Kate Kane directly asks Alexander Luthor and Selina Digatti if they are inviting her to a ménage à trois. Luthor and Selina glance at each other, then Selina simply responds "Sure, why not?" Kate can only say "...eee" in response before Selina laughs it off.
  • Talking Animal: In this reality, John Constantine is the rabbit inside of Zatanna's magician's hat. Of course, he used to be human, but Zatanna turned him into a rabbit in order to protect him from being killed. He later gets to be human again, which is a positive thing for both of them.
  • Team Title: "Bombshells" is the code-name of Amanda Waller's secret organization.
  • Teeth Flying: Barda gets one of her molars punched out by a monster in digital issue #31. It only makes her angry.
  • Trigger Phrase: When she first appears, Dr. Harleen Quinzel seems to be both sane and dedicated to the welfare of her patients. However, when a patient under her care utters a single sentence from the Joker, she transforms into the insane Harley Quinn.
  • Truth in Television:
    • There were baseball leagues utilizing all-female teams that sprang up in the United States during World War II as the male players joined the armed forces.
    • The Soviet Union was the sole World War II power to train and deploy female soldiers as part of the armed forces; all other powers officially restricted women to 'auxiliary' roles. The term used to refer to the squadron, the "Night Witches", was the German nickname for 588th Night Bomber Regiment.
  • Two-Faced: Harvey Dent, naturally, gets caught by an errant blast from Killer Frost, turning the left side of his face completely black from frostbite. Despite his brainwashing from Hugo Strange, he still never turns into his usual divided self.
  • Twofer Token Minority:
    • Kate Kane is Jewish and a lesbian, which has her face discrimination in Gotham City and would be lethal (If it were discovered) in Nazi Germany.
    • Zatanna is of mixed Jewish and Romani descent, both of which were "undesirable" by the Nazi regime.
    • Alysia Yeoh is a Singaporean-American transwoman.
  • Weird Historical War: World War II with superheroes and demonic forces.
  • Who Writes This Crap?!: Mera finds the name 'Aquawoman' to be ridiculous, but accepts it as part of the overall role.
  • World of Action Girls: Most of the comic's heroes, and all the ones with powers, are female.
  • Would Hit a Girl: Few of the male villains have qualms about fighting the Bombshells on equal terms, be it with fists, weapons, or anything else.
  • Wrecked Weapon: Inverted; when Batwoman clobbers a villain with her bat so hard that she breaks the bat, she casually gives its remains to Harper Row as a souvenir.
  • Wrench Wench: Harper works as a mechanic when she's not patrolling Gotham as one of the Batgirls.
  • You Crippled My Mother: Lois' mother came to the... attention... of Hugo Strange, and turned him down. He used his devices to break her ankles, ending her dancing career and forcing Lois to become the family's source of financial support.
  • Zombie Apocalypse: The deal that the Nazis made with the tenebrae was that the Nazis would rule the world, and that the tenebrae would be given the dead. As they spread further and further, killing more soldiers to enlarge their ranks, the tenebrae eventually ask if the Nazis have realized the flaw in their bargain.


http://tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pmwiki.php/ComicBook/DCComicsBombshells