Infinity, Inc. is a superhero team developed by American comic book writer Roy Thomas in the early 1980s, consisting of members that are children or proteges of various Justice Society of America members. The team was brought together by the JSA's youngest member, the Star-Spangled Kid, for the purpose of showing the worth of the younger generation of superheroes, who felt put-down by their parents and mentors. They existed on Earth-2, a Parallel Universe which featured the original, now older, versions of many of The DCU's heroes. The original lineup was:
- Star-Spangled Kid, time-displaced Golden Age Kid Hero. Originally just a Badass Normal (with a lot of money), later owned a "cosmic converter belt" (a redesigned form of Starman's gravity rod) that gave him Green Lantern-like powers. Later changed his identity to Skyman. Eventually killed in battle; Courtney Whitmore, step-daughter of S.T.R.I.P.E. would later assume the Star-Spangled Kid identity before going on to become Stargirl.
- Brainwave, Jr., son of JSA supervillain Brainwave. Had Psychic Powers.
- Fury, daughter of Wonder Woman and her long-time Love Interest, Steve Trevor. Same powers as her mother, but doesn't possess a magic lasso. Costume-wise, an Expy of Scarlet Witch.
- The Huntress, daughter of Batman and Catwoman. Left after their first adventure.
- Jade and Obsidian, children of Green Lantern (Alan Scott) and one of his old enemies, The Thorn. Jade had the same powers as her father, while her brother Obsidian could turn into a Living Shadow. Appearance-wise, the Expies of She-Hulk and the Vision, respectively.
- Northwind, godson of the original Hawkman and Hawkgirl. Son of an African American researcher and a member of a hidden race of Bird People called the Feitherans.
- Nuklon, godson of the original Atom and son of the (reluctant) atomic villain, Cyclotron. Can grow to giant size. Would go on to become Atom Smasher.
- Power Girl, cousin/adopted daughter of the original Superman. Also left after their first adventure.
- Silver Scarab, biological son of Hawkman and Hawkgirl; wore a magical armor.
They were later joined by the new Hourman, son of the original; new versions of the Badass Normal heroes Doctor Midnight and Wildcat, who were merely trained by their predecessors; and redeemed villains Solomon Grundy and Mister Bones.
Infinity, Inc. was hit hard by Earth-2's merging with four other Earths during Crisis on Infinite Earths. With the team rewritten to have originated on the post-Crisis Earth, they were left without much of their backstory, including Batman, Superman, and Wonder Woman. The book floundered for a few more years before cancellation.
As adults, most of the 'Infinitors' have since gone on to join the JSA or the JLA as full members.
A new Infinity, Inc. for the twenty-first century debuted in the miniseries 52. They were entirely new characters with no connection to the originals. Steel's niece Natasha Irons was a member for a short time.
This series provides examples of:
- Abusive Parent: Todd Rice's adoptive father James Rice was this due to being an alcoholic, and eventually had his comeuppance by Todd's hands when he had another FaceHeel Turn some time after the first series ended.
- Affirmative Action Legacy: The original Dr. Mid-Nite (Charles McNider) was a white man while the new one (Beth Chapel) is a black woman. Similarly, the first Wildcat (Ted Grant) was a white guy and his successor (Yolanda Muntez) is a Latina woman.
- Bad Powers, Bad People: Mr. Bones and his cyanide touch powers. He does become one of the good guys though.
- The Big Guy: Nuklon.
- Bird People: The birdlike Feitherans.
- Central Theme: Age vs. Youth.
- Covers Always Lie: The cover of one issue of the first series has Brainwave Jr. gleefully subjecting fellow member Fury to a bit of Mind Rape. The actual issue itself has Brainwave Jr. comforting Fury over the loss of her actual pre-Crisis parents (Wonder Woman and General Steve Trevor) by giving her Laser-Guided Amnesia to remove the painful memories of their existence.
- Dangerous Deserter: Silver Scarab, when he was possessed by a curse placed upon him at birth by the Golden Age Hawkman's eternal nemesis Hath-Set (probably through his incarnation or Dr. Hastor), turned against his former allies and was killed, although Hector Hall's spirit would end up being reincarnated in the form of Garrett Sanford, the former Earth-1 modern age Sandman.
- Death by Woman Scorned: In the 1988 annual story linked to The Young All-Stars annual story published that same year, Mekanique destroys herself and takes with her the rejuvenated Per Degaton who traveled through time when she realized that Per Degaton would never return the love she had felt for him.
- '80s Hair: Nuklon and his crazy-ass mohawk, which might have looked cool a few decades ago. Northwind had a mohawk, too, but that was natural plumage rather than a fashion statement on his part.
- Evil Counterpart: Helix and Injustice Unlimited were considered this for this incarnation of the team.
- Fan of the Past
- Gender Bender
- Gender Flip: The new Dr. Midnight and Wildcat are gender-flipped proteges of their Justice Society originals.
- Gratuitous Spanish: Some of Wildcat's dialogue has Spanish peppered in.
- Half-Human Hybrid: Northwind, who (alongside the rest of the Feithran race) became more avian in appearance in later years.
- Happily Adopted:
- Hippolyta Trevor in her post-Crisis origin, by Admiral Derek Trevor and his wife Joan Dale, who was the Freedom Fighter Miss America during World War II.
- Also the case with Jennifer-Lynn Hayden, the daughter of Alan Scott.
- Averted with Todd Rice, the son of Alan Scott, who was adopted by an Abusive Parent.
- HeelFace Turn: Mister Bones.
- Hidden Elf Village: Trevor Island, a South Pacific island owned entirely by Admiral Derek Trevor, who married Joan Dale (Miss America) and adopted and raised Hippolyta Trevor as his daughter, appearing near the end of the first series. This was to be the substitute for Paradise Island from the Wonder Woman franchise in regard to Hippolyta's upbringing, since after the Crisis it was renamed Themyscira and being used exclusively by the post-Crisis version of Wonder Woman as her home.
- Legacy Character: Some of the heroes like Brainwave, Hourman, Wildcat, and Doctor Midnight take on the name of their predecessor. Some villainous examples include the second Icicle and second Harlequin.
- Luke, You Are My Father: Obsidian and Jade tell Alan Scott this in the first issue.
- MayflyDecember Romance
- Power Palms: Jade had a special star-shaped birthmark on one of her hands that let her use her Green Lantern Ring-type power.
- Redeeming Replacement: Brainwave.
- Ret-Gone: Fury had all her memories of being the daughter of the Golden Age Wonder Woman erased by Brainwave Jr. after the Crisis. It would take months before she discovered that she was now the daughter of Helena Kosmatos, the Golden Age Fury from The Young All-Stars, and that she was adopted by Joan Dale Trevor, who was the Freedom Fighter character Miss America.
- Secret Project Refugee Family: Helix.
- Start My Own: Infinity Inc came to pass when a number of descendants/protégés of JSA members (Fury, Northwind, Nuklon, and Silver Scarab) impetuously burst into the middle of a serious JSA meeting and all but demanded to join. Several of the members reacted as one might expect to a bunch of costumed (apparent) strangers who'd bypassed their security (especially with a crisis going on), and this bad first impression affected the JSA's vote on letting them in. Refusing to accept this, they picked up some more recruits, including a couple of younger JSA members and started their own group.
- Step into the Blinding Fight: Dr. Midnight used blackout bombs to get a drop on fighting her foes.
- Stocking Filler: The villainess Hazard wears fishnets.
- Teeth-Clenched Teamwork:
- Due to his privileged upbringing (and bad attitude in general) Hector Hall/Silver Scarab didn't get on well with Obsidian. Lyta, during a fight, mentions that he's also clearly jealous of Obsidian for having powers.
- He also deeply resented his god-brother Northwind, due again to his inherent powers and having gained a great deal of Carter Hall's attention.
- Hector also resented the fact that Skyman ended up being the leader rather than himself.
- Twin Telepathy: Jade and Obsidian. Put into play in the final issues of the original series when Skyman is killed and Injustice Unlimited starts attacking them.
The new Infinity, Inc. provides examples of:
- Central Theme: Former young Jerkasses learning how to be responsible adult heroes.
- Dirty Coward: They run away from the fight when Black Adam goes berserk.
- Then again, he was an invincible Hero Killer.
- However, in the World War III tie-in miniseries, Nicki (the new Jade) is seen fighting with the rest of the heroes after the majority of Infinity Inc. left.
- Dropped a Bridge on Him: Most of their number have met brutal, pointless deaths. In fact that seems to have been their purpose all along, since they were just a part of Steel's subplot in 52.
- Hypocrite: When the new team finally met the JSA, the new Nuklon basically told them that these heroes were meant to take over from the old because of all their mistakes and failed attempts at making a better world, and when they time came he'd be leading them into battle. Cue World War III some months later, and when the time came for Nuklon to practice what he preached, he turned tail and ran.
- I Just Want to Be Special
- In Name Only: In-universe—the members of the team have no personal connection with the people whose names they have assumed. The copyrights for the original identities were purchased by Lex Luthor and he distributed them to the new team. (This might have been a subtle hint that the team itself was created just so DC would not lose the trademark to its name.)
- Leeroy Jenkins: Trajectory.
- Miles Gloriosus
- Mind Screw: The series starring Infinity, Inc. after 52 was... weird, to say the least.
- Sacrificial Lamb: Trajectory.
- Transgender: Fury/Amazing Woman. Possibly DC's first transgender superhero. Technically, Coagula of Doom Patrol came first, even if she appeared while the books was under the Vertigo header.
- Token Good Teammate: After Skyman is killed and Natasha Irons leaves the team, the only genuine heroic member left during 52 is Nicki Jones, the second Jade. Despite her rocky start during her debut, later issues depict her as having a conscience. She's genuinely shaken over the debate regarding her using the name "Jade," she's not with the team when they fight Steel and the Teen Titans, and while initially fleeing when the team goes to fight Black Adam, she's later shown as the only member of Infinity Inc. who actually stayed to try and stop Adam.
- What Kind of Lame Power Is Heart, Anyway?