The history of one of Captain Boomerang roughly began in Kurrumburra, Australia, with his mother, Betty Harkness, secretly an affair with Wiggin’s, who was also formerly an American soldier stationed in Australia. Married to an Ian Harkness, it would be during one of Ian’s tours where both Betty and Wiggin’s would secretly conduct their romantic affair. Even though Wiggins returned to America and retired from the military, he later became a successful salesman for a toy company in Central City. It would also be during this time where Wiggins returned to Australia to visit Betty and continue on with the affair, which eventually resulted with Betty being pregnant with Wiggin’s child. After learning this, Betty tried to leave Australia with Wiggin’s only to find Wiggin’s refusing her pleas. After her son George was born, it wouldn’t be long until Ian learned of George’s true father, which resulted with Ian developing a personal hatred for George. Because of Ian’s despise against George, and being raised in difficult poverty, George began to develop a difficult lifestyle that quickly found it growing worse.
But when George received a mysterious package from a Wiggin’s Toy Company of a new selling product that was a boomerang, he was baffled as to why he would receive such a package. Despite the origin of the toy boomerang, George’s mysterious gift resulted with his new boomerang toy being taken by Ian because of how it destroyed the windshield of his truck and that it came from his actual father. But feeling bad for her own son, Betty had Wiggin’s secretly ship George another toy boomerang to where he developed a natural skill of throwing it. But even good things came at a price for George when he began using the boomerang for mischevious pranks that started to lead George onto being on the wrong side of the law. It would until his late teens where George began to turn to a criminal lifestyle that resulted with Ian forcing George out of his home after being caught robbing a General Store. But Betty couldn’t see her son living on his own and secretly bought George a ticket to travel to America so that he would be with his true father, this would also be the last time where George would see his mother.
George was amazed with Central City after traveling to America, and easily got the chance to meet his father Wiggin’s at his toy company. With Wiggin’s trying to promote his new toy boomerang, he offered his son a job within the company to act as the new mascot for Wiggins Toy Co. Wearing an outfit decorated in a boomerang theme, Digger proudly took on his new role as Captain Boomerang. But George’s new career fell rather quickly when realizing that the people of Central City believed Captain Boomerang as a sad joke and that Wiggin’s business was quickly failing. After being paid with bounced checks, George became desperate for money and decided to make use of his Captain Boomerang role and his skills for a life of crime.
Major Story Arcs
Digger became a recurring villain for the Flash ( Barry Allen). Digger was sent to prison for his crimes, but he planted special boomerangs in every jail within one hundred miles of Central City. They would remain invisible until he concentrated his brain waves to materialize them. He would later use one to escape prison. Barry Allen was at the scene working as a police scientist and was attacked by Captain Boomerang. Barry quickly changed into the Flash. Flash hit Boomerang with a gust of wind by spinning his arms, but Harkness contorted his body into a boomerang and flew back at the flash knocking him out. Captain Boomerang sent Flash to an alternate dimension filled with monsters, using a machine that turned him into a boomerang. However Flash knew that if he stayed in the form of a boomerang he would come back to the sender and was able to defeat Captain Boomerang.
Harkness would later join the Suicide Squad in exchange for a pardon of his crimes. However, Harkness's personality and racism made him an undesirable member of the team. Harkness simply watched by as his teammate, Mindboggler, was shot in the back due to her using her mind-altering abilities on Harkness to shut him up when he was verbally abusing another team member. He also manipulated another team member, Slipknot, into running away from the action just to see if the explosive bracelets the Squad members wore really did activate if the wearer attempted to escape which, they did. He even committed robberies as Mirror Master, but when Amanda Waller found out she ended his career and took away his team benefits.
Disgusted with his life, he jumped when Abra Kadabra brought him and four other Rogues an offer that would bring them respect. An offer that would “guarantee that they would be remembered forever not as has-beens, but as the most infamous villains of their age.” What Kadabra did not tell them was that it would cost them their lives. The five died, and unleashed the demon Neron upon Earth. Neron was not finished with them, however. As part of a convoluted plot to force the Flash into a deal, he sent the Rogues’ bodies to Earth without their souls. The bank robbers who had so enjoyed matching wits with the Flash were now soulless killers, in command of vastly enhanced powers, with even more powerful avatars that caused enormous damage and killed thousands before the Flash was able to turn the deal around and force Neron to halt the destruction and return the Rogues’ souls to their bodies. Captain Boomerang, like his fellow Rogues, returned to his life of crime, though for a time he was concerned with protecting himself from Neron. His experience in Hell did not seem to change him much, but near-fatal injuries at the hands of the Dark Flash embittered him. He declared revenge on the latest super-speedster, and helped with the creation of the living weapon Replicant. Only his exposure to Joker venom healed him, and even then he disappeared from public view.
Identity Crisis and Death
Harkness found himself an obsolete villain regularly going up to the supervillain satellite looking for jobs, finally deciding to reach out to his abandoned son, Owen Mercer. The two began to bond until he was hired to kill Jack Drake, father of Tim Drake. Digger had been sent by the real killer to attack Jack Drake, only the killer double crossed Digger and sent Drake a warning and a pistol to defend himself. Digger managed to kill Drake but not before he was shot himself. The loss of Harkness caused Mercer to take up his father's mantle as Captain Boomerang.
During the Blackest Night, Black Rings ressurect most of the previously killed Rogues. After newly resurrected Rogues head towards Iron Heights , Digger heads to Gotham. At the same time, the current Batman (Dick Grayson) and Red Robin are stuck in a graveyard, with Black Lantern versions of Jack and Janet Drake and The Flying Graysons. The Black Lanterns create a circus, and a recreation of Tim's house growing up. They then force Dick and Tim to watch as theyre deaths are recreated, with Black Lantern Tony Zucco shooting Dicks parents while on the trapeze and laughing at their broken bodies, and Captain Boomerang "killing" Jack Drake as Tim looks on. As Dick and Tim's rage overtakes them and they let loose on Zucco and Harkness, the other Black Lantern Batman villains appear, being drawn to the massive rage. As Tim and Dick make their last stand, Deadman arrives, possesing the demon Etrigan. As Deadman distracts the zombies, Damien sends in one of Mr. Freeze's ice guns. Dick and Tim freeze themselves, making them invisible to the Black Lanterns, and they leave in search of ther targets.
Digger then rejoins his fellow undead Rogues at Iron Heights, as they begin to attack the living Rogues, only to be whisked away by Owen Mercer. Captain Cold, Heatwave, Weather Wizard, and Trickster arive at a construction site after dealing twith the other zombie Rogues, to find Owen standing over a pit. Owen reveals that he trapped Digger in the pit, and believes that feeding him enough hearts will bring him back to life. Captain Cold learns that Owen threw women and children down to be killed as well, which is against the Rogues code. He then pushes Owen down the pit to be killed by his father. Owen becomes a Black Lantern, and Cold freezes them.
Rebirth and Brightest Day
Following his return to the living at the end of Blackest Night along with eleven other heroes and villains, Digger Harkness aka Captain Boomerang is apprehended by the Flash and returned to Iron Heights Penitentiary to await his previous murder convictions and to be reinstated by the courts system. Digger is visited by the Flash, who proceeds to tell him that he knows him, and Harkness should make Flash "run" after him again. Digger goes on to tell the Flash that you only have to choices in life, either get busy living or get busy dying and that he fully intends to live his life, which the Flash takes as a threat.
A short time into his imprisonment, Captain Boomerang is beaten down by several prison guards, who hide their brutality stating he fell down a flight of stairs. He is forced to visit the hospital infirmary where the warden wants some tests done on him, so they can understand how he was revived. Boomerang tries to defend himself and bites the nose of a guard. He is easily defeated without his weapons. However under this duress, Digger finds out he is able to create black energy boomerangs. He throws one to the guard that was brutalizing him and it exploded on contact. It is a left over power from his time as a Black Lantern . He used his new powers to escape Iron Heights. Digger was told by Captain Cold that in order to get back with the Rogues he'll need to take a shot at Flash, who at the time is having his own problems with The Renegades from the future, so he goes to prove himself, stating he wants his old life back, and he's intent on making flash run, if that's what it takes. And then he proves himself a formidable fighter against the renegades, who underestimated the "primitive" usefulness of boomerangs.
Digger, without the knowledge of the other Rogues, hatches a scheme to free Eobard Thawne and learn what the future holds for him. He easily blasts his way into Thawne's holding cells using his newly acquired dark construct powers and frees Thawne. He asks him what happens to him in the future, but Thawne merely brushes him off, asserting that Captain Boomerang's low-tier villain status means he was forgotten and faded away after Harkness dies. He then leaves Digger alone to be discovered by Captain Cold and the rest of the Rogues who are shocked and outraged to discover that Captain Boomerang has freed the Reverse Flash.
The Entity that restored Digger to life after the events of Blackest Night tells what Boomerang and the other eleven heroes and villains that were resurrected must do in order to retain their new lives. If Digger wants to keep his life he must throw a boomerang at Dove. Wanting to keep his new life, Digger accepts the mission, and goes on the hunt for Dove. Toward the climactic end of the Brightest Day, Digger finds Dove and throws the boomerang, killing Boston Brand whom jumped in front of Dove. With the throwing of the boomerang, the White Entity restored Harkness' life, and took away his Black Lantern boomerang powers.
What Goes Around
Seeking to regain his Black Lantern powers, Harkness trolled Central City for tips. He soon caught a lead that took him to S.T.A.R. Labs in Metropolis. The canister of Black Lantern energy couldn't be opened without a cryogenic freezing unit, with that he turned to Mr. Freeze for help. He told Freeze he could have some if he would open it, hoping to restore his wife, Freeze accepted. Learning that the canister was a fake, Freeze told Harkness the deal was off. Thinking that Freeze was just lying, and trying to keep it all for himself, they got into a heated argument which almost ended Digger's life, but he was saved by Red Robin. This turned out to be none other than a revenge plot by Red Robin to kill Harkness. Red Robin couldn't go through with it, so he let Digger escape.
Kicked in the Teeth
Captain Boomerang is given Deadshot's place as leader of the new Suicide Squad by Amanda Waller. With leadership, she also gave him the controls to the Squad's neck bombs. The Squad are given the orders to investigate a terrorist group named Basilisk. Captain Boomerang charges in without a thought, getting himself into trouble with not only the terrorist group, but Deadshot as well. After finding the second in command, Grey Lora, Deadshot reveals that Digger killed her sister. Knowing that he's been betrayed, Digger tries to activate the nanite bombs, but to no avail. The trigger he was given turned out to be a fake, and it was revealed that Deadshot asked Waller for Captain Boomerang to be added to the team so he could use him as a bargaining chip. Digger is never seen after this, but it can be assumed that this isn't the last we'll see of him.
Weapons and Skills
Captain Boomerang is skilled in the area of creating and using complicated boomerangs of his own designs as weapons.
These are some of the boomerangs he has created:
- Electro-boomerang: Emit spark trails carrying a deadly 5,000 volts, which circle around the target.
- Exploso-boomerang :Detonates on contact, damage to all in one area.
- Gas boomerang: Monstrous intensity tear gas, affects one area.
- Razor boomerang
- Bladed boomerang
- Acid-spewing boomerang
- Sonic boomerang: Excellent intensity sonic attack.
- Gravity boomerang: Creates local gravity field of Incredible intensity.
- Weighted boomerangs: Solid-weighted boomerang.
- Preprogrammed boomerangs: These boomerangs are rocket propelled and are preprogrammed to fly to a target, pick up whatever item, and returned to a predesignated spot with amazing flight speed and range.
Digger was given the ability to create black energy boomerangs that explode on contact, after he was risen from the dead. The power is gone, now that he has fulfilled his mission given to him by The Entity.
Justice League Unlimited
Captain Boomerang appears in two episodes of the Justice League Unlimited cartoon. He first appears in the episode "Task Force X" wherein he is a member of the titular team. He and his cohorts break into the Justice League Watchtower (an act that is almost thwarted when he refuses to remove 75 cents from his pocket whilst going through a metal detector) in order to steal the powerful Annihilator Armor locked away in the League's armory. Harkness employs explosive boomerangs to blast past checkpoints in the Watchtower's defenses. With his help, the job is a success despite the loss of teammate, Plastique.
He appears again in season 2 in the episode "Flash and Substance". Having left Task Force X, he reconvenes with many of the Flash's other villains during Central City's "Flash Appreciation Day". Tired of being thwarted individually, they decide they will combine forces to take down the Flash. Harkness is again shown as being extremely stingy with money when his contribution to the plan (a giant rocket-propelled boomerang) fails, he demands compensation from the other Rogues and claims that it "Cost me a fortune!" Later, at the behest of Captain Cold, Boomerang and the others attempt to jump the Flash at his museum's opening. He battles the Flash as well as holding his own in a one on one battle with Batman until he is finally knocked unconscious. He is promptly arrested along with the other villains.
Lego Batman 2
Captain Boomerang is a boss in free play mode and an unlockable character, once you have defeated him.