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Characters / Superman: The Animated Series – Earth Antagonists

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Alas, not everyone on the Man of Steel's adopted planet appreciates his presence — and quite a few would love to see him Deader than Dead. Who are these mere mortals that would challenge him, be it through brains, gadgets, or serendipitous superpowers? Read on...

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    Lex Luthor 

    Mercy Graves 

Mercy Graves
Voiced by: Lisa Edelstein
Voiced in Latin America by: Lilo Schmid (Superman: The Animated Series), Edilú Martínez, Marycel Gonzáles (Justice League, Unlimited)
Voiced in French by: Emmanuèle Bondeville (Superman: The Animated Series)

  • Battle Butler: Lex Luthor's.
  • Beleaguered Assistant: Poor girl has to constantly be on the move with a boss like Lex Luthor barking orders every two minutes.
  • Bodyguard Babes: A beautiful bodyguard who wears a chauffeur uniform with very tight pants.
  • Bodyguard Crush: Totally one-sided on her part much to her chagrin.
  • Canon Immigrant: She follows from Harley Quinn's lead. She proved popular enough that she would subsequently appear in the comics and in other animated series like The Batman (with some slight changes) and Young Justice, and heavily inspired the character of Tess Mercer from Smallville.
  • Clingy Jealous Girl: Strongly implied due to her Bodyguard Crush as she's shown to be highly resentful of women getting close to Lex. Best seen in "My Girl" where Luthor became unusually taken with Lana Lang so Mercy decided to secretly follow her and discovered her passing information on Lex's activities to Superman, proudly reporting back to Lex and being happy about Lana being killed for her betrayal.
  • Chickification: She unfortunately suffers this in Justice League, having retired from action and growing her hair out. Ironically she starts off her first appearance by being more confident, successful, and willing to stand up to Luthor than ever before, but Luthor then threatens her and she reluctantly agrees to help him. She may end the episode hanging up on him, but come Unlimited, Luthor is once again the head of Lex corp and Mercy is right by his side.
  • The Comically Serious: Though she can be pretty snarky on occasions.
  • Dark Action Girl: She's good behind the wheel or in a fight, and she understands entirely when Lex speculates that it'd be a Shame If Something Happened...
  • The Dog Bites Back: Subverted first, as we're set up to think she'll turn on Lex for abandoning her to take the fall on one of his criminal deeds, but it turns out his hold on her is too strong. But she finally gets to do it for real in Justice League when he uses his prison call on her and she immediately hangs up. Then she goes right back to him two seasons later when he's "reformed" and running for President.
  • The Dragon: To Lex Luthor.
  • Expy: In Justice League, after growing out her hair and undergoing Chickification, she becomes this to Eve Teschmacher.
  • Foil: To Harley Quinn in "World's Finest". Where Harley is flamboyant and hyperactive, Mercy is restrained and precise. They don't get along.
  • Friends with Benefits: While there's no real romantic feelings between the two, it's heavily implied (especially in Justice League) that the two have more than a professional relationship going on. Their entire relationship oozes with emotionally oppressive relationship subtext, and Lex all but spells out in "Tabusa Rasa" that they've been intimate on a regular basis.
  • Girl Friday: A bit of a Badass Normal with many skills and few scruples. She is very useful to Lex.
  • Hidden Depths: When Lex is exposed as a criminal, he names Mercy the new head of LexCorp. She turns out to be a much better businessperson than Lex. As it so happens, cutting out Luthor's obsessive supervillain side-projects and selling off Luthor's anti-Superman resources has made LexCorp more profitable than ever. Luthor is rather nonplussed when he finds out.
  • Honest Corporate Executive: In Justice League, when Lex was in prison, she took over his position to keep his company running, seemingly without have to commit any crimes unlike Lex when he was in charge to keep LexCorp financially afloat.
  • Hypercompetent Sidekick: She is way more level-headed than her boss, and seems to be able to keep up with her boss' commands. Of course, we see that when she became head of LexCorp, she was much more successful than Luthor ever was, especially due to not being obsessed with defeating Superman, and just less focused on supervillainy in general.
  • Kick Chick: Almost exclusively uses high kicks, except for her gun. She also wears a short mini-dress which almost always gives the viewer a great view of her legs even when she isn't fighting. No Panty Shots, though.
  • Magic Skirt: She is always running around doing high kicks, being beaten up and sent flying by people, all in an outfit that looks more like a tight top than a full chauffeur's uniform.
  • Ms. Fanservice: Even moreso in Justice League, to the point where the android Amazo (while channeling Flash) hits on her.
  • Ninja Maid: For Lex.
  • Recruited from the Gutter: In "Ghost in the Machine", she explains to Superman that Luthor took her in off the streets, explaining her loyalty to him. Unfortunately, Luthor doesn't return the sentiments and abandons her when the room collapses, prompting her to turn on him in Justice League.
  • Servile Snarker: Not at first, but she does develop into a snarker. She's the one person to whom it's safe to deliver his As You Know speeches and the only one who will ask, sincerely, "Why Don't You Just Shoot Him?"
  • She-Fu: She doesn't hesitate to show off what she's got when she fights.
  • Statuesque Stunner: She's quite tall and attractive.
  • Street Urchin: According to Mercy, she was one of these until Luthor came along took her in, cleaned her up, and made her his right-hand girl, explaining her hopeless Undying Loyalty to him.
  • Villain Decay: In her appearances in Justice League, she has undergone Chickification at the cost of the Bodyguard Babes and Dark Action Girl aspect.


Metallo (John Corben)
"No escape, Superman. Not this time. You can drown me, you can bury me, you can send your foot soldiers to do your dirty work, but I can take anything you can throw at me."
Voiced by: Malcolm McDowell (Superman: The Animated Series, Justice League Unlimited), Corey Burton (Justice League)
Voiced in Latin America by: Rafael Monsalve, Renzo Jiménez, Rubén León (Superman: The Animated Series), Ezequiel Serrano, Roberto Colmenarez (Justice League, Unlimited)
Voiced in French by: Jean-Louis Faure (Superman: The Animated Series, 1st voice), Bruno Dubernat (Superman: The Animated Series, 2nd voice), Vincent Violette (Superman: The Animated Series, replacement voice), Éric Chevalier (Justice League), Magid Bouali (Justice League Unlimited)
Appearances: Superman: The Animated Series | Justice League

"There's the reality! The metal behind the man! It's all I am now! It's who I am...Metallo."

John Corben was a mercenary hired by LexCorp to steal an experimental Mini-Mecha and deliver it to Lex's (illegal) buyers. Superman's debut in Metropolis was crushing the robot and hauling Corben off to prison. While in jail, Corben contracted a fatal disease. Lex Luthor, thankful for Corben refusing to testify against him, offered a solution: upload Corbin's mind into an immortal robot body, powered by a Kryptonite core. Corben enjoyed the limitless strength and durability, but the lack of touch, smell and taste drove him insane. Especially once he found out that the fatal disease he contracted was deliberately applied to him by Luthor. Still, he is a dedicated enemy of Superman. He later joins the Legion of Doom in Justice League Unlimited.

  • Adaptational Job Change: In the comics at the time, he was a small-time conman before becoming Metallo; while pre-Crisis, he was a journalist (and secretly a thief and a murderer). Here, he was a mercenary-for-hire.
  • Adaptational Nationality: In the comics, he's American. Here, he's English.
  • And I Must Scream: His fate at the end of both his first appearance as Metallo ("The Way Of All Flesh") and then his second one in "Action Figures."
    • The first time, he ends up sinking to the bottom of the ocean, leaving him stranded and forced to wander aimlessly until he managed to hit land by sheer chance. He was down there for a year, and the strain of it caused him to lose his mind.
    • The second time, he ends up Buried Alive beneath tons of solidified magma. He discusses it when he returns in "Heavy Metal."
      Metallo: Remember how you left me, Superman? Buried in rock?! I couldn't move. I couldn't see. I couldn't hear. But I could think, and all I thought about was how I was going to make you pay!
  • Attack Its Weak Point: Disabling his Kryptonite core is usually the only way to stop him.
  • Blessed with Suck: He gets an immortal, super-strong body powered by Superman's biggest the cost of losing all tactile sensation.
  • Barbie Doll Anatomy: The fake flesh on top of his metal skeleton lacks nipples.
  • Brain Uploading: After Lex poisoned him, his brain was put into a robotic shell.
  • Cyborg: In "The Way of All Flesh", Corben becomes Metallo; his original organic brain sealed inside a completely artificial body of virtually indestructible metal.
  • Didn't Think This Through: Revels in gaining an indestructible cybernetic body that saves him from a deadly virus and renders him immune to pain, but finds out the hard way that it also removed all his pleasurable senses, and that the transplant is irreversible.
  • Easily Forgiven: In his first episode, he wanted to kill Luthor for ruining his life. But come the time of JLU, he apparently doesn't care anymore about his old grudge when the two of them join Grodd's Legion of Doom despite not directly interacting with each other, as shown by his lack of taking any action against Luthor during his time there.
  • Easy Amnesia: In "Action Figures", Metallo's time on the bottom of the ocean wiped his memories clean. He briefly becomes a hero to some local children...until he remembers Superman.
  • Evil Brit: He's played by Malcolm McDowell.
  • False Reassurance:
    • When he mentioned that he couldn't feel anything, the doctors said there would be "adjustments" to be made. He assumed they meant that his new body needed some fine-tuning; what they actually meant was that he'd have to get used to his new condition.
    • When he goes to confront Luthor, he tries to explain that, in time, he would be able give Metallo his senses back (or transplant Corben’s brain onto another organic body). Metallo is not fooled this time.
  • Faux Affably Evil: He's often friendly and grinning, but he is usually assuming the pleasant persona to mock and insult his foes.
  • The Hedonist: Before his transformation into Metallo, he was shown to be a reckless and thorough hedonist who enjoyed life's pleasures from good food to women. It's how Luthor managed to give him an incurable disease by poisoning his food and what instantly drove him insane by being trapped in a sensory-deprived body.
  • Kick the Son of a Bitch: His transformation into Metallo is entirely the result of Luthor ruining his life so as to manipulate him for his own ends, and his pain as he realizes how much becoming Metallo has cost him is genuine...but he's also a remorseless sociopathic mercenary who has hurt a lot of people, so the audience's sympathy for him is limited.
  • Man of Kryptonite: He gains a super strong robotic body powered by the very substance that can weaken and kill Superman.
  • Motive Decay: Zig-Zagged. Initially, it seems to be played straight; after "The Way Of All Flesh", he seems only interested in defeating Superman and not in avenging himself on Luthor. However, Fridge Brilliance clarifies that there's three easy reasons why he's after the Man of Steel:
    • The first is that Corben has his own grudge against Superman. The Man of Steel interfered with his attempts to avenge himself on Luthor, which would have been bad enough, but the end result of that little encounter was that Corben spent a year wandering blindly along the bottom of the ocean. Not a week after that, a fight with Superman left him buried alive under tons of rock for weeks, maybe months, until Intergang dug him out. No wonder he's pissed off!
      • One could also make the argument that Corben would never have been infected by Luthor in the first place if Superman hadn't been around. Not a very sane argument, but, after what Corben's been through, it's very doubtful that he's stable.
    • The second reason is that Corben needs to kill Superman before he can get revenge on Luthor. Superman is far more of a threat to Metallo than Luthor is — Corben can just smash his way into Luthor's office and rip Luthor's head from his shoulders whenever he wants, but to do that, first he's got to stop the Big Blue Boyscout from interfering with his unlawful vengeance.
    • Finally, the reason why Corben would focus on Superman over Luthor is that Superman is the person responsible for some of the worst of his pain and offers him nothing in return, whilst Luthor (who is a very charismatic and persuasive sort of individual) can make the argument that he can find a way to reverse the transfer or at least upgrade his body with tactile input.
  • Naked Nutter: As John Corben goes mad from the Sense Loss Sadness of his Metallo body, he starts ripping off his clothes...along with his human-looking skin.
  • Nigh-Invulnerability: His robotic body makes him difficult to kill.
  • Not-So-Harmless Villain: Corben was the first real bad guy Superman stopped, and although the Lexo Suit seemed to put him on the ropes, Supes turned it into a Curb-Stomp Battle. As Metallo, Superman can't fight him head-on thanks to the kryptonite inside of him, turning Corben into a battle that can't be overcome with raw strength unless he gets taken by surprise.
  • Robotic Psychopath: He's a skilled mercenary upgraded to a cybernetic body, a process that made him even deadlier, but drove him insane.
  • Sense Loss Sadness: The inability to taste, smell or feel anything drives him to the edge in less than a day.
  • Series Continuity Error: What's left of his clothes and skin at the end of "The Way of All Flesh" is completely destroyed by the beginning of "Action Figures," leaving him with his fully robotic appearance from the comics, but for his remaining appearances throughout the DCAU, he's somehow reverted back to his "Way of All Flesh" appearance pictured above.
  • Smug Snake: He tends to be very condescending to everyone.
  • Starter Villain: Even though he didn't become Metallo until later, Corben and his gang were still the first criminals that Superman had to contend with in the series' premiere. As Metallo, he made four appearances in the series before Superman formed the Justice League, though Lex Luthor and Darkseid are not only more recurring, but trump him in danger.
  • Super Strength: His robot body makes him far stronger than a normal human being.
  • Unwitting Pawn: He was deliberately infected with the lethal virus by Lex Luthor so he would require the cybernetic transplant, effectively becoming his “saviour’s” own guinea pig.
  • Villainous Crush: Despite his vendetta, he clearly had an attraction to Lois Lane. His first instinct upon seeing her again was to kiss her. Unfortunately, he's unable to take any enjoyment when he realizes he can't even feel her lips.

    Bruno Mannheim 

Bruno Mannheim
Voiced by: Bruce Weitz
Voiced in Latin America by: Roberto Colmenárez
Voiced in French by: Mario Santini (1st voice), Christian Pélissier (2nd voice)

Mannheim leads Metropolis's branch of Intergang, a major criminal syndicate. He soon gets weaponry from Apokolips, allowing him to deal with Superman and the local police force. Eventually, Superman and the police team up, and Mannheim is forced to flee to Apokolips, where he meets his new boss, Darkseid. Instead of killing him outright, Darkseid sends him back to Metropolis so he can overtake the nuclear power plant. He then sets the reactor to overload, and Darkseid leaves him to die as the reactor goes critical.

  • Adaptational Nice Guy: A very downplayed example. This version of Mannheim is still an unsympathetic, unrepentant crook who willingly collaborates with Darkseid, but he isn't the cannibalistic cult-leading psychopath he was in the comic.
  • Adaptational Wimp: His comic book counterpart is Darkseid's chosen apostle on Earth and much more threatening. This version of the character is just a regular mob boss who Darkseid manipulates in his plan to invade Earth and gets nonchalantly sacrificed once he is of no more use.
  • Asshole Victim: For starters, he's indirectly responsible for Winslow Schott, Jr. becoming Toyman because he framed his father and had him die in prison. He more than deserved being left to die by Darkseid.
  • The Chew Toy: And completely deserving it.
  • Les Collaborateurs: He helps Darkseid in his plan to conquer Earth.
  • Disc-One Final Boss: He appears to be the main threat at the end Season 1, but it turns out that he's really working for Darkseid.
  • Jerkass: He's the head of a criminal syndicate who ruined a man's life by framing his father. What did you expect?
  • Karmic Death: He helps Darkseid with his invasion schemes and is left to die for all his troubles, just like Toyman's father.
  • Killed Off for Real: Darkseid lets him die in a nuclear explosion.
  • Lensman Arms Race: Cops? No problem. Superman? Apokolips weaponry. Superman + Cops? Flee and call in the Parademons!
  • Save the Villain: In his first appearance, he had to be saved from the Toyman.
  • Smug Snake: He's a very arrogant bastard, that's for sure.
  • The Syndicate: Leads one.
  • Too Dumb to Live: Working for Darkseid, yeah, that can't go wrong! It gets him killed when Darkseid abandons him to die in a nuclear explosion.
  • Villain with Good Publicity: He's rehearsing a speech for the grand opening of a park he built for the city in his debut episode.
  • You Have Outlived Your Usefulness: Darkseid leaves him to die after he serves his purpose.


Toyman (Winslow Schott, Jr.)
Voiced by: Bud Cort (Superman: The Animated Series, Static Shock , Justice League Unlimited), Corey Burton (Justice League)
Voiced in Latin America by: Eduardo Rodríguez (Superman: The Animated Series), Óscar Flores (Static Shock)
Appearances: Superman: The Animated Series | Static Shock | Justice League

"A childhood is a terrible thing to lose, Miss Lane, but I'm getting mine back...with a vengeance."

Winslow Schott wanted nothing more in life than to make toys. Unfortunately, he had little money, and could only achieve his dream by taking a loan from gangster Bruno Mannheim. The toy company soon became a front for Intergang activities. When the police busted the operation, Mannheim let Winslow take the fall, and the kindly toymaker spent the rest of his life in prison. Now Schott's son seeks revenge, adopting the identity of Toyman and using a variety of deadly toy-themed weapons and death traps against the gangster and his mooks. Naturally, this attracts Superman's attention. He later joins the Legion of Doom in Justice League Unlimited.

  • Achievements in Ignorance: In the Justice League episode ”Hereafter”, Vandal Savage comments that Toyman had unknowingly created a time machine that sent Superman 30,000 years into the future as opposed to a death ray he thought he had.
  • Affably Evil: He can be quite genial, particularly to Lois, though in a very creepy way.
  • Attack of the 50-Foot Whatever: He sics a giant rubber duck on Mannheim in "Fun and Games", a very large Rock-'Em-Sock-'Em Robot/wind-up kangaroo hybrid on Superman in "Obsession," and a massive toy-like robot on the League in "Hereafter".
  • Beware the Silly Ones: Toyman's gimmick is a joke, but his toys make him an exceptionally dangerous villain.
  • Cool Mask: Wears an ever-smiling mask that he never removes.
  • Creepy Monotone: He speaks in a cold and emotionless tone of voice.
  • Crazy-Prepared: In the Static Shock crossover "Toys in the Hood," even though he had genuinely fallen in love with Darci enough to try and give her a new identity, he was always aware of betrayal, so he put in a fail-safe that would destroy her.
  • Crouching Moron, Hidden Badass: As goofy as he looks, he manages to create a time machine by accident, destroy Killer Frost in a fight via a yo-yo, successfully navigates the Hall of Doom through the universe and create a nerf gun that causes parademons to explode.
  • Death by Irony: Presumably the original reason for Schott's gimmick- he uses toy-themed weapons to attempt to kill the man who ruined his father's toy business and sent him to prison.
  • Demonic Dummy: The staff of the show said his design was based off of a ventriloquist dummy that used to be sold in magazines back in the day.
  • The Dragon: Is basically Luthor’s right hand man during “Alive!”
  • Expressive Mask: Completely (and very creepily) averted.
  • The Faceless: Orphaned after his father dies in prison, Toyman becomes a toy-crazed supervillain, hiding his face behind a Howdy Doody-like mask. Schott is never seen without the mask, although it's frequently cracked and broken in his battles with Superman, and his fellow villains.
  • Freudian Excuse: See Parental Abandonment, below.
  • Gadgeteer Genius: He invents toy-like weapons.
  • Happy Fun Ball: His specialty.
  • Ironic Nursery Tune: He's very fond of invoking this trope, whether he's singing "Rain, Rain, Go Away" while piloting a Humongous Mecha or humming "Mary Had a Little Lamb" while walking through a bunch of supervillains fighting.
  • Killer Yo-Yo: He knocks out Killer Frost in a Single-Stroke Battle in the penultimate episode of Justice League Unlimited. Using a yo-yo.
  • Kick the Son of a Bitch: In his first appearance, his entire motivations resolve around trying to kill Bruno Mannheim as revenge for what he did to his father. Superman still ends up saving Mannheim, but it's hard to feel sorry for all the things Toyman makes the guy go through.
  • Malevolent Masked Men: He wears a creepy doll-like mask and is also an insane criminal.
  • Motive Decay: In his first appearance, he was seeking vengeance against Bruno Mannheim, the man responsible for ruining his father's life. After that, Toyman never makes another attempt to kill Mannheim again and focuses all his future efforts on either creating lifelike female androids to be his companion or just trying to kill Superman. Makes sense, since by the time of Toyman's second appearance, Darkseid has already killed Mannheim, depriving him of his chance for revenge.
  • Nerf Arm: Toyman's weapons include suction-cup darts (that explode) and nerf bullets (that make the target explode after bouncing off).
  • No One Could Survive That!: Happens at the end of both of his Superman: TAS appearances.
  • Not-So-Harmless Villain: He's a Manchild in a clown mask straight out of the '40s, with a theme based on children's toys. He's also one of the most terrifying villains in Superman's Rogues Gallery, a roboticist on par with Lex Luthor, and one of the few villains to legitimately defeat Superman (and apparently kill him).
  • Offscreen Villain Dark Matter: His father died penniless and he's never shown committing crimes for money, but he apparently has endless resources to pay for his tanks, helicopters, giant rubber ducks, and incredibly advanced robots. Oh, and in his Static Shock appearance, he somehow got his hands of enough Kryptonite to build an entire army of robot minions made of it.
  • Oh, Crap!: He has this reaction in "Hereafter" after he "killed" Superman and a distraught Wonder Woman tore his machine apart in response and literally told him that she was going to kill him for what he had just done. Thankfully for him, the Flash saved his life telling Wonder Woman Superman wouldn't want her to do such a thing.
  • The Only One Allowed to Defeat You: It's implied on a personal level for him with his and his fellow Legion of Doom accomplices' Enemy Mine with the Justice League against the revived Darkseid's invasion of earth in the Grand Finale of Justice League was because Darkseid had killed his original Arch-Enemy Bruno Mannheim, therefore taking away the original reason he became Toyman in the first place as he was trying to avenge himself and his father for what Mannheim did to them. So, he's probably more than happy to sic his nerf gun on his parademons stealing his initial goal from him.
  • Parental Abandonment: His dad (framed by the mob) died in prison, leaving him to be switched from one foster home to another.
  • Psychopathic Manchild: Much like his Superfriends incarnation, he's depicted as a maniac with a childish obsession with toys, though played in a light that's more disturbing than humorous.
  • Slasher Smile: Painted onto his mask.
  • Stalker with a Crush: In "Obsession."
  • Sympathy for the Devil: Expressed for him by Lois.
  • Underestimating Badassery: Killer Frost does this to him in "Alive!". Toyman is able to take her down using a weaponized yo-yo.
  • Woobie, Destroyer of Worlds: Even if he is a dangerous criminal, it's hard not to feel sorry for the fact that he became this way because his father was screwed over by Mannheim and died in prison while he was shipped off to several neglectful foster homes.


Luminus (Edward Lytener)
Voiced in Latin America by: Eduardo Rodríguez (Superman: The Animated Series)
Voiced in French by: Vincent Ropion (Superman: The Animated Series), Mathias Casartelli (Justice League)

Edward was an engineer at LexCorp who specialized in light and laser manipulation. He was a mole for Lois in one of her stories, and while Lois' work won her a journalism award, he was fired. In revenge, he tried to murder Lois, and then Superman got involved. Lytener took up the persona of Luminus and decided to get his revenge on Superman. That failed, too. Luminus is last seen fighting the Justice League after a jail break.


Livewire (Leslie Willis)
Voiced by: Lori Petty (Superman: The Animated Series, The New Batman Adventures), Maria Canals Barrera (Justice League)
Voiced in Latin America by: Elena Prieto (Superman: The Animated Series), Úrsula Cobucci (Justice League, Unlimited)
Voiced in French by: Magali Barney (Superman: The Animated Series), Virginie Ogouz (The New Batman Adventures), Caroline Maillard (Justice League)

A Metropolis radio personality who built her career by bashing Superman on the airwaves. She finds herself suddenly possessing electrical superpowers after both she and Supes are struck by the same lightning bolt during a thunderstorm. Blaming him for her condition, she soon adopts the persona of "Livewire" and takes her Superman-bashing to a new, dangerous and shocking level. She later fights Batgirl and Supergirl in a crossover episode of The New Batman Adventures and joins Grodd's Secret Society in Justice League Unlimited.

  • Adaptation Dye-Job: In the tie-in comics, she temporarily loses her powers. While human again, she's a blonde rather than the brunette she was in the show.
  • Adaptational Heroism: In both the tie-in comics and the mainstream comics, she eventually becomes an ally, a stark contrast to her original animated incarnation who simply did things For the Evulz.
  • Attention Whore: A decent part of her characterization, especially in her first appearance. It's particularly obvious before her transformation. In the tie-ins, realizing this is her first step towards a Heel–Face Turn: she tries to call Superman out for a big, flashy showdown in the middle of an alien invasion, but instead of fear from the populace she only gets annoyance that she's trying to grab the spotlight when there's far more important events taking place, causing her to realize how ridiculous her usual schtick is.
  • Badass Boast: "You can't stop me anymore than you can stop rain...wind...or LIGHTNING!"
  • Canon Immigrant: She originated in Superman: The Animated Series and was subsequently added to the original comics.
  • Deadpan Snarker: Comes with her job as a Shock Jock.
  • Dumbass DJ: Before gaining her powers, she was a popular DJ who spent all her time insulting Superman in order to boost her ratings.
  • Elemental Baggage: She works like a battery; she must absorb the charge from other electricity sources to use her powers, and when that charge runs out, she's normal.
  • Form-Fitting Wardrobe: Livewire's outfit is created by ionizing the air around her, and she herself describes it as "form-fitting."
  • Goth: Dressed like one as a human.
  • Heel–Face Turn: In the tie-in comics to the show, at least. After making the jump to the main DC Universe, she eventually turns good there as well when her powers are rewritten to cause her to develop incredible psychosis, and Superman helps her by giving her an energy-regulating suit, restoring her mind.
  • Heroic Sacrifice: Twice in the comics:
    • The first time is to stop Brainiac from releasing all the world's nuclear weapons: she ends up using all her power and the effort leaves her pretty much brain dead, and Star Labs can only barely manage to keep her alive.
    • The second time is after Luthor uses Apokolips tech to revive her in order to sell her to Apokolips, Superman intervenes but ends up getting himself and Leslie sent to Apokolips itself where they find out Darkseid plans to use Livewire to power a doomsday weapon. Leslie and Superman manage to foil the plan and Leslie, fully powered by the planet itself, starts to wreak havoc, but realizing that she will go nuclear soon tells Superman to run. Being Supes he refuses and races Leslie back to earth where he flies her to a clearing to explode. Luckily for her it doesn't hurt her, but it kills Superman. Leslie uses the last of her power to restart his heart, which reverts her back to normal. Later she gets struck by lightning again and returns to being Livewire, but now as a hero.
  • Hypocrite: She trashes Superman for supposedly "only thinking of himself" even though the second she gets her powers she does her best to use them for her own benefit while screwing over everyone else.
  • Jerkass: As a shock jock, it's sort of her thing. How much was an act and how much was her personality is unclear, but she seemed to believe what she was spouting.
  • The Lad-ette: While she's a woman, she doesn't act very feminine.
  • Leitmotif: An electric guitar tune.
  • Lightning Can Do Anything: Passing through Superman first apparently means it can create metahumans. Applying the trope to Livewire specifically, she's able to do nonsensical things like dive into TV screens and then appear on them.
  • Logical Weakness: Livewire and water do not mix. Her stored electricity will short circuit and at least partially dissipate if she gets wet.
  • Motor Mouth: She often makes multiple snarky comments while on-screen.
  • Navel-Deep Neckline: She has a large lightning bolt-shaped slit that goes down to her belly button, although no cleavage is actually drawn.
  • Never My Fault: Her transformation was due to her stupidity of hosting a concert in the middle of a storm. Superman tried to get her to cancel it as she was both putting herself and the audience in danger; she wouldn't listen and even though he saved her from getting hit by lightning, the bolt passed through Superman and hit her anyway, transforming her into Livewire. She then blamed Superman for the mess, mostly from seeing on TV a reporter interviewing Superman accusing that he deliberately didn't push Leslie out of the way when the lightning struck.
  • No Celebrities Were Harmed: Between her being a Dumbass DJ, having black hair pre-transformation, and referring to herself as the "queen of all media", she was basically a gender-flipped counterpart to Howard Stern.
  • One-Liner: Loves these. Makes sense given her past as a Shock Jock.
  • Psycho Electro: She has electrical powers and isn't very sane. Even more so in the comics where her powers are explicitly stated to affect her brain chemistry, exacerbating her already less-than-stable mental faculties.
  • Pure Energy: Livewire describes herself as such and, though it makes for a very interesting character, it does not make any more scientific sense than every other "energy being" out there. And, oddly enough, she apparently still has a skeleton.
  • Shock and Awe: Gains electric powers after being struck by lightning.
  • Shock Jock: Before getting her powers. Afterwards, she drops the "jock" part.
  • Straw Feminist: At times.
  • That Man Is Dead: "Meet [Leslie Willis's] replacement!"
  • Vapor Wear: Her Navel-Deep Neckline makes it clear she's not wearing a bra.
  • Verbal Tic: She tends to tack the word, "babies", onto the end of almost every other sentence when talking to other people.


Parasite (Rudy Jones)
Voiced by: Brion James (Superman: The Animated Series), Brian George (Justice League)
Voiced in Latin America by: Alí Rondón (Superman: The Animated Series)
Voiced in French by: Bruno Choël (Superman: The Animated Series), Olivier Cordina (Justice League), Michel Barbey (Justice League Unlimited)

Once an employee of S.T.A.R. Labs, Rudy was exposed to an experimental chemical compound that spilled on him when he tried to steal it. Now, as The Parasite, he possesses the power to absorb the energy, memories and physical abilities from anyone he touches, including Superman. He later joins the Legion of Doom.

  • Achilles' Heel: He gains the weaknesses of those whose powers he copies, usually with greater effect than the originals.
  • Affably Evil: Very amiable, though in this case it only serves to make him more creepy.
  • Battle in the Center of the Mind: He has this in "Two's a Crowd".
  • Bitch in Sheep's Clothing: Superman first approached him by treating him with sympathy for his accident and offering help. Parasite played along to trick him into physical contact so he could absorb his powers.
  • Composite Character: Of himself, between the Rudy Jones and Maxwell Jensen Parasites. He has the name and origin of the former and the powers of the latter.
  • Decomposite Character: Word of God confirmed the Batman Beyond-era Parasite in the JLU episode "Epilogue", based on how Ed McGuinness drew Jonesnote , is a Legacy Character.
  • The Dog Bites Back: After becoming fully acclimated to his new form, the first thing he did was track down his former partner Marty to pay him back for past abuses and for leaving him to die.
  • Dropped a Bridge on Him: He is arguably the most prominent character to get this anti-climactic death.
  • Drunk with Power: As a defining character trait. His main motivation is that his whole life people have been pushing him around and looking down on him, and now he wants as much power as he can for as long as he can...and enjoys using it to lord over others. That said, on a good day, he can be a relatively well-adjusted guy considering it all. He seems pretty satisfied with getting cable TV in his prison cell once he's captured.
  • Eviler than Thou: He's on both sides of this in two episodes of Superman: TAS. In "Two's A Crowd", he's less evil than Earl Garver, initially trying to encourage him to be a good prisoner and comply, which will make his life easier. It's only after being duped by Garver that he goes rogue, and that lasts only until he realizes Garver is using him as an expendable dupe. Then, in "Double Dose", he pulls this on Livewire, playing along as her partner only until they have Superman incapacitated, then preventing her from killing him so he can leech the life from the both of them.
  • Evil Is Petty: In "Two's A Crowd", he demands payment to use his powers to read the mind of Mad Bomber Earl Garver. His payment? That he gets a big-screen television with cable TV hookup installed in his cell. With all of the premium channels.
  • From Nobody to Nightmare: He went from a janitor to deadly supervillain.
  • It's Personal: He was somewhat playful with Superman in his initial appearances, but then he got fried after absorbing Livewire's powers and was left practically comatose. When he returned in Justice League, Grodd noted that he now openly hated the Man of Steel.
  • Killed Off for Real: He's frozen and then blown up along with Grodd's other followers in "Alive!"
  • Power Parasite: He can absorb the powers of any metahuman he drains.
  • Secret Identity Apathy: Parasite finds out that Superman is Clark when he absorbs his powers during his first appearance, but other than using this to ambush him at home and take him prisoner so he can be a permanent "meal", he shows zero interest in it. A throwaway line from his first appearance suggests that he lost all of his memories — therefore including who Clark is — but next time we see him he shows no sign of this (and he gets him several times in later episodes anyway), so presumably Parasite spends the entire DCAU knowing that Clark Kent is Superman and simply not caring (or maybe not thinking) to share that information with anyone.
  • Split-Personality Takeover: In "Two's a Crowd," Earl Garver takes control of Parasite after Parasite tries to absorb Garver's memories. Eventually, the two of them duke it out for control of the body.
  • Trapped by Gambling Debts: The reason he tried to steal a chemical compound in the first place.
  • Who's Laughing Now?: He goes from hardluck janitor to one of Superman's most dangerous enemies.
  • With Great Power Comes Great Insanity: When Rudy Jones was first introduced, his characterization was desperation instead of malevolence, and he stopped his partner when he tried to actually hurt people. However, after he became Parasite, he became obsessed with draining anybody he could get his hands on and taking revenge on a world that hurt him.


Volcana (Claire Selton)
Voiced by: Peri Gilpin
Voiced in Latin America by: Livia Méndez

  • Anti-Villain: In her debut episode, the only reason she turned to crime was to collect enough money to leave the USA and escape the government agents trying to take her back as a living weapon. She is depicted as a conventional villain when Supergirl confronts her just a few episodes later.
  • Canon Foreigner: She is an original character created for the series.
  • Cleavage Window: As part of her Justice League outfit.
  • Costume Evolution: During S: TAS, she wore a cocktail dress and jacket, but during JL, she sports a tank top and pants.
  • Dark Action Girl: She's willing to fight and is also a villain.
  • Dating Catwoman: She was flirting heavily with Superman at the end of her debut episode and he never stopped her. In fact, he looked like he was having fun while she did it.
  • Deadpan Snarker: At one point, when Superman catches her, she remarks "You're going to make me earn this, aren't you?"
  • Distracted by the Sexy: She gains entry to a private party and draws the eye of on-duty photographer Jimmy Olsen, through raw sex appeal.
  • Fiery Redhead: Has long red hair, with a temper and literal fire powers to match.
  • Fiery Sensuality: Volcana has a more sexualized outfit in Justice League. The villain Firefly is shown to be quite smitten with her, either because of her looks, her fire powers or both.
  • Flying Firepower: She has pyrokinesis and some flight (possibly a form of telekinesis).
  • Friendly Enemy: At the end of her debut episode she and Superman and shown to be on incredibly good terms, showing that they're friends now. They were playfully flirting and trading barbs. Volcana even blows a fiery kiss towards Superman and he smiles at it.
  • Motive Decay: In her first appearance, she's an Anti-Villain who Superman forms a quasi-partnership with. Afterwards, she's just a random baddie.
  • Playing with Fire: She can create streams and even crude shapes of fire (assuming there's air to fuel the combustion).
  • Took a Level in Jerkass: In Justice League, she shows a willingness to kill using her powers, making her more sinister than before.
  • Ungrateful Bitch: While her attitude and thoughts on Superman by the time of Justice League aren't directly addressed, she can still be seen as this by sheer (un) virtue of joining a bunch of Superman's rogues to go on a crime spree in celebration of Superman's supposed death...which is a really funny way of showing appreciation towards the guy who once helped her out.

    Corey Mills 

Sergeant Corey Mills
Voiced by: Xander Berkeley
Voiced in Latin America by: Eduardo Rodríguez
Voiced in French by: Patrick Osmond

    Detective Kurt Bowman 

Detective Kurt Bowman

Voiced by: Eddie Barth

A corrupt detective who despises reporters because Lois cost him a promotion with an article on police corruption. Bowman also murdered a woman, and pinned it on a small time burglar. And Bowman is perfectly willing to kill so he isn’t caught.

  • Death by Secret Identity: After his crimes are revealed, he's soon sentenced to death. Right before the lever is pulled for the gas chamber he's in, he wonders how the heck Clark had survived the bomb he implanted into his car and quickly came to the realization he was Superman.
  • Dirty Cop: Detective in his case, but he's known for taking bribes and ignoring protocol. He's also not above murder either.
  • Jerkass: He’s a spiteful, petty Dirty Cop who it turns out is quite willing to resort to murder.
  • Killed Off for Real: He is executed by gas chamber, the same way the man he framed would have died.
  • Not Me This Time: Inverted. In his debut episode, Target, he is innocent of trying to kill Lois, and it's never suggested he did anything worse than take bribes. The Late Mr. Kent shows that he had killed someone offscreen, and he tries to kill Clark Kent when Kent tries to exonerate the man he blamed for it.
  • Spanner in the Works: Would have gotten away with his crimes if he hadn't happened to target the one reporter in the city who was Nigh-Invulnerable.
  • Villain of Another Story: He debuts in "Target," but only as a Red Herring and doesn't become the Villain of the Week until "The Late Mr. Kent."

    Earl Garver 

Earl Garver
Voiced by: Brian Cox

A deranged scientist who created a radioactive bomb, and threatened to use it on Metropolis if his ransom demands weren’t met. Garver was left in a coma during a raid on his heavily fortified house, and Parasite was brought in to read Garver's mind. It went very wrong.

  • Grand Theft Me: Pulled this on Parasite.
  • Ink-Suit Actor: He bares a resemblance to his actor Brian Cox in the role of Hannibal Lector in Manhunter.
  • Mad Scientist:
    Professor Hamilton: Earl, please, listen to reason!
    Garver: I am listening to reason. My reason.

    General Hardcastle 

General Hardcastle
Voiced By: Charles Napier

A U.S. Army general with a hatred for Superman.

    Agent Kurt 

Agent Kurt

Voiced By: Peter Gallagher

A government agent who was the head of the project that captured Volcana and attempted to turn her into an assassin. He and his men went rogue after she escaped and tracked her down, intending to sell her to the highest bidder.

  • Corrupted Character Copy: Of Nick Fury - eyepatch-wearing, take-no-prisoners leader of a secret government taskforce. Really hammered in by his closest subordinates being obviously based off Dum Dum Dugan, Gabe Jones, and Jasper Sitwell.
  • Eyepatch of Power: Wouldn't be an expy of Nick Fury without one.
  • Killed Off for Real: He dies when Volcana, while trying to fight Superman so she can murder him, inadvertently sets off some nearby gas tanks. Considering the strength of the explosion, the slim chances of Kurt getting away, and the fact he never shows up again, it’s safe to assume he died.



Voice by: Dina Sherman

Metallo's girlfriend. She seduces Jimmy Olsen as part of a complicated plan to lure Superman into a trap.

  • Action Girl: She demonstrates some martial arts skills when fighting Jimmy.
  • Glass Cannon: She gets some good hits in on Jimmy, but can't effectively fight back once he begins to respond.
  • Love-Interest Traitor: Jimmy discovers that she is working with Metallo and only wants him as bait for Superman. The last we see of her is him locking her in a closet before going off to help the superhero.
  • Monster Fangirl: What else can you say about a girl who dates a supervillain?
  • Obfuscating Stupidity: Tina acts like a ditzy intern while playing double agent for Metallo the entire episode.
  • What Happened to the Mouse?: We never find out what happened to Tina after Jimmy locked her in the closet (though it's very likely she got arrested).