WARNING: This article contains spoilers for Damage #3 by Tony S. Daniel, Robert Venditti, Danny Miki and Tomeu Morey, in stores now.
Spinning out of the pages of Dark Nights: Metal, several new characters have been launched into their very own series under the “New Age of DC Heroes” banner. Leading the charge, both figuratively and literally, is the new super-strong DC hero named Damage.
The character’s origin borrows a more than a little bit of inspiration from Marvel’s Incredible Hulk: Private First Class soldier Ethan Every was turned into a super-soldier by the U.S. government, transforming into a super-strong, rage-fueled monster that smashes everything in its path. However, unlike the Hulk, Ethan only turns into Damage one hour per day. After that, he’s back to his regular, non-super-powered self.
As a man, Ethan is just a soldier with basic, human limitations. But as Damage, he is pure, raw power. He is, without a doubt, incredibly strong. How strong? Well, as we discover in issue #3 of Tony S. Daniel and Robert Venditti’s Damage comic series, he is even stronger than Superman.
Ever since the debut of his series, Damage has proven what a fearsome force he is. Buildings fall in his wake, war-suit-wearing soldiers don’t stand a chance against him — in fact, entire armies can’t stop him. The team known as Suicide Squad XL went up against him … and was defeated in mere seconds. He punched his way through Giganta’s hand, he overwhelmed Parasite and Harley Quinn, Deadshot and Solomon Grundy were all ineffective against him.
Damage #3 reveals that it isn’t just the mid-level powerhouses who are ineffective in stopping him; the super-powered creature can hold up its own in a fight against Wonder Woman, for the better part of an hour. What’s more, it can overcome the effects of the Amazon Princess’ golden lasso.
The fight between Damage and Wonder Woman is hard hitting and devastating. It leaves buildings crumbled to dust, and an entire city shaken. The only reason it ended in the first place is due to Damage’s one hour time limit. There is no telling how it would have ended were it not for this time constraint — perhaps even Wonder Woman would have fallen.
Later, Diana Prince reports back to Batman and Superman, telling them of her encounter. It’s here that the Amazon warrior, who has fought against gods, aliens and other super-powered beings, reveals that she has never before faced the level of strength Damage holds.
“Never?” asks an incredulous, slightly shocked Superman, to which Diana simply offers silence. Wonder Woman knows Superman’s power levels, and the fact that she is silent when faced with the question is quite telling. Damage has proven himself even stronger than the Earth-bound Kryptonian, meaning that there aren’t many other characters out there stronger than him, on Earth or off.
In one fell swoop, we instantly got an idea of the levels of strength packed behind the punches of Damage, while positioning him as one of the DC Universe’s strongest characters. Not bad for a character with a mere three appearances to his name! We have no idea of his limits yet, but may get to learn just how strong he is when he faces the collective might of the Justice League.