Art by Adam Kubert

May 18, 2019

Fan Theory connecting the Current Hawkman and Shayera Hol to the Savage Hawkman

One of my favorite pastimes is to tie all of the continuities of Hawkman into one character. In the current Hawkman series, Robert Venditti has brilliantly put all of the past Hawkmen on one foundation. He has made an origin that explains all the Hawkmen and why Hawkman does what he does. It changes everything about Hawkman but also leaves everything that has happened in the past intact. However, a new challenge for fans came up when Shayera Hol and the Savage Hawkman showed up in Justice League No. 14-16 (February-March 2019).

In this story, Shayera Hol was Empress of Thanagar Prime, the ancient planet where the Thanagarians originally came from. We found out that she survived the destruction of the former Thanagar (Death of Hawkman, 2016-2017) and brought all of the Thanagarians to Thanagar Prime to rebuild their world. She used the absorbascon, a powerful Thanagarian device that provides information and makes thoughts into reality, to bring a version of the Savage Hawkman back to life. During the story, Savage Hawkman/Katar Hol is revealed to be her husband. However, this version was just a husk of a character, and he quickly faded away when they lost control of the absorbascon. But this established the existence of Shayera Hol and Savage Hawkman/Katar Hol in the current DC Universe.


From Justice League (2018) No. 16
But wait a minute. Shayera Hol was the wife of Katar Hol, and they were heroes from Thanagar during the Silver Age. Later, the story of the Golden Age/Silver Age Hawkman and Hawkgirl were combined in a retcon in Hawkworld Vol. 2 in 1990. The Hawkman and Hawkgirl from 1940-1994 were explained to be the same characters. It was a huge stretch, but DC has rewritten, rebooted, retconned, and rebirthed so many times, it's hard to keep track.
From Hawkworld Annual No. 1
In this theory, I'm going to fill in holes and connect the dots by making a lot of assumptions. Some of the past Hawkman and Hawkgirl versions could be from other dimensions or different realities. The Hawks from Tony Isabella and Richard Howell's Shadow War and Vol. 2 (1985-1987) has been set on Earth-85. So that is always an option. It may be a cop-out, but it's an option. As Venditti explained in the current series, Hawkman (and we're assuming Hawkgirl also) has been reincarnating across time and space for thousands of years. Time progresses at different speeds in outer space. For example, because of gravitational time dilation (time progressing at different speeds because of the nearest gravitational force), some of their lives could have happened simultaneously at different places or even jumped ahead of another. This would be the reason why the lives of Shayera Hol (Justice League) and Shayera Thal (Hawkworld) could overlap each other.

From Hawkman Vol. 2 by Richard Howell

I've attempted to take what I know of the history of Hawkman and Hawkgirl and try piecing it together. Because of all of the Flashpoint, New 52, Rebirth events, a lot of it may have been erased or rewritten. I'll try to work that in as best I can. I want the current Carter Hall/Hawkman, Katar Hol/Savage Hawkman, Shayera Hol, and Kendra Saunders/Hawkgirl to make sense, and this is what I have come up with. There may be a few holes, but here goes. (Note: The underlined parts are my own personal theories)

Carter and Shiera Hall were heroes during the 20th century. They had careers with the Justice Society and Justice League. During this time, they started researching the origin of the Nth Metal and discovered the threat of Dark Multiverse. To prevent Barbatos from threatening their world, Carter Hall decided to go into the Dark Multiverse alone. After he went into the Dark Multiverse, he essentially died, and when the reincarnation kicked in, he was split into two beings; one was the Dragon of Barbatos and the other was Carter Hall/Katar Hol/Hawkman. The Dragon went to the Dark Multiverse and Carter Hall/Katar Hol/Savage Hawkman went to the Multiverse. In the Dark Multiverse, the Dragon of Barbatos served Barbatos as the defender of the Forge of Worlds. The Savage Hawkman came from Thanagar but the crash landing caused some memory loss. On Earth, he became the hero Hawkman. He also became a cryptologist and lived in New York. He was a hero but at the beginning of the Savage series (2011), something has happened and he tries to quit the superhero business by destroying his Hawkman costume, wings, and the Nth Metal. When he attempts to set it on fire, the Nth metal jumps from the fire and merges with Carter Hall's body. This gradually had an adverse effect on him.


From The Savage Hawkman No. 1 (2011)


The Nth Metal fusing with his body also caused him to dream and hallucinate. Since the Nth Metal was from Thanagar, it caused him to dream of Thanagar, Shayera, and her brother Corsar that did not exist.

The whole Thanagar part of the Savage series is never referenced to before or after it happened in the series. Shayera's name is even spelled Sheyera at times (in the trades). Haunted by the visions, he eventually went to Thanagar after the Justice League (2013) broke up, only to find a planet very different from his dreams.
From The Savage Hawkman No. 0 (2012)
The planet is nothing like the planet he expected, but he decides to stay and join the Thanagarian police force. But he is extremely unhappy, constantly breaking the rules for brutality against criminals. During his time on the police force, he runs into Shayera and her group while working on a case.
From The Brave and the Bold No. 44 (1962)
Shayera was a descendant of Rhon Dhu, a Thanagarian emperor whose lineage goes all the way back to the great hero, Kalmoran. The family ruled Thanagar for many centuries but were finally overthrown and went into hiding. There were many royalists who wanted the royal family back in power, so the government tried to find the remaining descendants of Kalmoran to stop an uprising before it happened. As the descendant of Kalmoran and Rhon Dhu, Shayera was a fugitive, planning to overthrow the current government. While in hiding, she met Savage Hawkman/Carter Hall, now calling himself Katar Hol, and they fell in love and were wed in secret. To protect his wife, Savage Hawkman kept his distance, waiting for the time when they wouldn't have to hide anymore.


From Death of Hawkman No. 2 (2017)
However, the Nth Metal continued to cause Hawkman to have brash behavior (beating up criminals) or meet up with other women. Before Shayera could help him, Despero attempted to take control of all of the universe's Nth metal and in the process, Thanagar was destroyed. To stop Despero's plans, Katar Hol/Carter Hall sacrificed his life.
From Death of Hawkman No. 6 (2017)

I need to explain the change in the Shayera Thal of the Savage series and the Shayera Hol of the Justice League series. I once was able to ask James Tynion (one of the writers of Justice League #14-16) about the appearance of Shayera Hol after the destruction of Thanagar. He said the role of Shayera Thal of Thanagar had been altered and was now Shayera Hol. So the Shayera Thal in the Savage series never existed. This is what gave me the idea for the Savage Hawkman having the visions and dreams, and Shayera Thal not existing.


From Justice League (Shayera Hol) and The Savage Hawkman (Shayera Thal)
As for Hawkgirl, Shiera died a few years after Carter Hall disappeared into the Dark Multiverse. Just as Hawkman was split into two beings, the same happened with Hawkgirl. In the Multiverse, Shiera was reborn as Kendra Saunders and Shayera Hol. This was caused by the power source called the Totality. Kendra was born on Earth and went on to become Lady Blackhawk of the Blackhawks, while Shayera was born on Thanagar as a descendant of the Thanagarian hero Rhon Dhu, and the rightful heir to the throne of Thanagar, as mentioned earlier.

Kendra Saunders and Shayera Hol
Art by John Becaro, krishna and balram banerjee
After Thanagar's destruction by Despero, Shayera took her people to Thanagar Prime to rebuild their world and became the Empress of Thanagar, only to be overthrown briefly by Onimar Synn. After the Metal event, Shayera once again proclaimed herself Empress Shayera Hol of Thanagar Prime, no longer hiding her marriage to Katar Hol.

After Metal, Carter Hall was rescued by Kendra Saunders and the Justice League. He was transformed from the Dragon of Barbatos and became the Hawkman we now have in the current series. He recently has discovered his true origin and all of the past memories that he had forgotten have been returned to him, including the Savage Hawkman's memories. Carter now remembers his past relationship with Shayera Hol, the reincarnation of his wife Shiera.

While Kendra and Carter seem to have a platonic relationship, Carter is pining for Shiera, and Shayera is grieving the loss of her husband. Now that Shayera has been made whole, and since Hawkman has remembered his history and all of his past lives, both characters are whole once again and remember everything. It's only a matter of time before Carter Hall of Earth and Shayera Hol of Thanagar Prime find each other.

I'm sure Venditti, Scott Snyder, and James Tynion IV have plans of their own, but for now, here's the theory that could work. But as with any theory, ask me again tomorrow. I might have a new theory!

3 comments:

  1. So the Hawkman/Hawkgirl from Geoffs run takes place right after metal and before Vendittis run?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Actually, the Flashpoint story wipes out that run.

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