So, I've perused a few titles of the DC New 52 and as I glanced through the issues of Threshold, I was pretty surprised to see the new design of Captain Carrot and a couple of Zoo Crew members, Alley Kat Abra and Pig Iron. I was giddy as I loved these characters in my younger days... and then I thought, really DC, are you seriously trying to match the strange attraction of Marvel's Rocket Raccoon? I also caught up with Action Comics and saw Captain Comet making appearances. He's been an interesting character over the years with varying degrees of success. Though, honestly, he seems a bit touched in the head currently. Then I remembered how I would imagine a team in the 'real' DC Universe would look based on Earth-C's Zoo Crew and things got interesting. Reading Captain Carrot growing up, I wondered why isn't there a team of human characters like them. After all, there was the team of Justa Lotta Animals based off the Justice League of America. So I decided to try to find a reasonable way to build a team in the New 52, without going the way of talking critters. So, let's see what we have...
I have always seen Captain Comet as the human counterpart of Captain Carrot. The names are similar. The powers are similar. Comet can be a leader as much as the bunny in spandex. So he's my top choice the team's #1 spot. With the new 52's take, though, he'd be a little extreme and eccentric. Maybe forming a team to aid in the progress of evolution among others who represent different aspects of human potential. Separating from the giant telepathic beans that have been using him or whatever that craziness is currently happening to him.
Witchfire has become my choice for a human counterpart for Alley Kat-sorry, Sleen. Not using characters from Justice League/Justa Lotta, so Zatanna would out. Plus, she probably wouldn't work with cosmic type stories (which my team would be focused in part). Besides, Witchfire is an awesome character and looks good, too. There really isn't anyone in DC that matches Sleen's character description that I'm aware. A martial arts instructor gifted with mystic abilities. There is Meridian Mychaels, a favorite of mine, who knows martial arts and self-defense but she's a teleporter and one who is strictly limited to traveling along Earth's ley lines. So, my choice for #2 spot on the team is Witchfire who would also keep Comet in check.
Apparently, in the entire history of comics, there has never been one character named Rubber Man, which would be an apt replacement for Rubberduck. It's strange really. There's Rubber Maid and Rubberband Man. There is Flexo the Rubber Man but that's a robot. So, Plastic Man, will have to work. I've never really liked Plas's look, though. To me, he looks like a jigalo swimmer or a poolside pimp. Maybe if they took his sleeves and covered his legs, he'd look better. I don't know, but he's the only one capable of being Byrd Reynolds's human counterpart. Though, I would try to use Nucloid from Kingdom Come, if it were possible. He'd fit better with the theme of the team. (Nucloid, by the way, is nowhere on this site. For shame, Viners, for shame.)
Yes, folks, Stargirl would be my choice for the main DC counterpart of Yankee Poodle. After exploring all the possibilities of female magnetic manipulators in the DC universe - Magenta, Aura, Lodestone - I was so close to picking Magenta, but then heard how Stargirl's costume was supposed to be inspired by the power poodle, that I decided Comet's mental instability was enough for the team and Magenta had to be struck from the list. Besides, Stargirl is a popular character with cosmic abilities and her attitude would do her well dealing with Captain Crazy.
Another character I always felt would be a counterpart of a Zoo Crew member is Steel. Obviously the counterpart of Pig Iron but with brains. I like the idea of having him on the team and because he's an intelligent guy that can work things out, Steel would share the #2 spot with Witchfire, if not put her in third himself.
Lastly, for the speedster of the team, Fastback's counterpart would obviously be Fastbak of the New Gods. Having created his aeropads, Fastbak can reach incredible speeds, and apparently he has an incredible singing voice. Another good choice for a cosmic themed team, I would think. As with Plastic Man, however, he desperately needs a wardrobe change. Poor guy looks like an elf at Santa's Village.
And there it is, my idea of a counterpart team of the Zoo Crew. They would need a name, of course. Something beginning with Z, perhaps Zeta or Zero or both. There is the question of the two later members of the team Little Cheese and American Eagle. I was never impressed with either, but have to say I would throw in the new 52's Little Knipper just to see what could happen.