In 2011 the editorial decision was made to relaunch the entire DC lineup into the new 52. Initially some characters were missing, but after the first wave of cancellations certain titles were replaced with others. One of the titles in this "second wave" was Earth 2 which focuses on characters traditionally associated with the Earth-2 of the DC multiverse who are primarily the Justice Society of America characters. As Hawkman is a prominent hero on Earth-1 and because of her well established role in Justice Society of America stories over a long time, Hawkgirl was one of the first characters to be introduced alongside Jay Garrick, Alan Scott and Al Pratt. She first meets Jay Garrick in Poland and the two travel together to Washington D.C. where they confront Solomon Grundy. After Al Pratt arrives and defeats Grundy he captures Hawkgirl, revealing that the two come from a similar government program and that she has escaped.
Chay-Ara was an Egyptian princess, married to the Egyptian prince Khufu. They found a crashed shipped which gave them their powers. But they were cursed by Hath-Set to die and then reincarnate, over, and over, always dying when reaching the peak of their love. In the 1940s, Chay-Ara was reincarnated as Shiera Sanders while Prince Khufu was reincarnated as Carter Hall who was also the winged wonder, Hawkman. Still connected to each other, Carter and Shiera formed a romantic relationship. While on the trail of criminals, Hawkman formulated a plan to capture them. He was able to contact Shiera to aid him in his plan.
Shiera wore his spare costume complete with Nth metal wings and flew by the criminals pretending to be Hawkman. The criminals were distracted by her and Hawkman was able to capture them in their confusion. Shiera continued to wear the costume and wings as Hawkgirl.
Thus far the character's origin in the new 52 has not been revealed other than some insinuation of her background as part of a secret program.
Legendary writer, Gardner Fox, and artist, Dennis Neville, created Shiera Sanders in her first appearance in Flash Comics #1 (1/1940). Fox and artist, Sheldon Moldoff, later presented Shiera's first appearance as the Golden Age Hawkgirl in All-Star Comics #5 (6/1941).
Fox and artist, Joe Kubert, revised his creation of Hawkgirl in the Silver Age in the Brave and the Bold vol 1 #34 (3/1961). Instead of being a super-hero from Earth, the Silver Age Hawkgirl was an alien police officer from Thanagar.
Writers, David Goyer and James Robinson, and artists, Scott Benefiel (pencils) and Mark Propst (inks), were the creative team for the first appearance of the next Hawkgirl, Kendra Saunders, in JSA Secret Files #1 (8/1999).
Golden Age: Earth-Two
Known as the Golden Age Hawkgirl, Shiera Sanders was Carter Hall's partner and companion. Carter was drawn to Shiera after having a dream that he was Prince Khufu of ancient Egypt. In this dream the prince was betrothed to Chay-Ara, who bore the striking resemblance to Shiera. The two of them become romantically involved and end up donning Ninth metal wings in order to thwart crime as Hawkman and Hawkgirl. It was later revealed the two were the reincarnations of the ancient Egyptian Prince and his lover. Their ancient identities were murdered via a Ninth metal blade wielded by a sorcerer named Hath-Set. The two lovers were repeatedly reincarnated and then murdered by Hath-Set, who was also reincarnated. Dr Anton Hastor, being an example of Hath-Set's Reincarnation. In one retcon, the Golden Age Hawkgirl replaced Silver Age Hawkgirl as a member of the JLA.
Silver Age: Earth-One
The Silver Age Hawkgirl was quite similar to the Golden Age version in his appearance, powers, and methodology. Her origin was changed, Shayera Hol and her husband, Katar Hol, were alien police officers from Thanagar. They tracked a shape-shifting criminal named Byth to Earth. After Shayera and Katar captured Byth, they sent him into Thanagarian custody. They decided to stay on Earth to study police techniques using the aliases, Shiera Hall and Carter Hall. In these civilian identities, they established themselves as husband-and-wife curators of the museum in Midway City which was also their base of operations on Earth as police officers.
The Halls also had a Thanagarian starship in geosynchronous orbit above Midway City which was undetectable to scans due to the ship's cloaking device. The police uniforms of the Halls were standard issue on Thanagar but also concealed their features as they enforced the laws of Earth and fought for justice. The uniforms of Thanagarian police officers had feathered wings and a belt made of Nth metal, an element native to Thanagar, which gave the wearer the power of flight. While in uniform, the Halls became known to the residents of Earth as Hawkman and Hawkgirl. Hawkgirl joined the JLA (in Justice League of America vol 1 #146). Hawkgirl changed her name to Hawkwoman (in World's Finest Comics vol 1 #274). Due to several retcons in the 1990s, the Silver Age Hawkgirl no longer exists and replaced by other versions.
Modern Age: New Earth
Shiera Hall was unwilling to leave Carter who remained alive after the events in Zero Hour. So her soul found her way to her Grandniece, Kendra Saunders, who had just committed suicide. Shiera's soul entered Kendra's body as Kendra left it. However, she retained no memory of her previous lives with Carter. Donning the mantle of Hawkgirl, Kendra refused to believe that she was Shiera. She went on a mission to find the reincarnation of Hector Hall, who would take up the mantle of Dr Fate. During this time she joined the Justice Society. Becoming a crime fighting partner to Carter Hall, and even having an attraction made things awkward for the two. Kendra was also plagued by the death of her parents, adding to her confusion.
Prior to Infinite Crisis, Troia recruits a number of heroes to aide her, including Kendra. This group fell victim to a Zeta-Beam malfunction, and Kendra was altered, becoming a 20 foot tall version of herself. She was one of the luckier of the group, and her affliction was treated, restoring her to normal. Kendra joined the newly formed JLA and ended up in a relationship with Red Arrow. This relationship was rocky and did not last long. Shortly after, Shiera's soul left Kendra's body to seek out the afterlife and avoid the reincarnation process.
During Blackest Night Kendra was killed by the Black Lantern Sue Dibny while trying to tell Carter Hall her feelings towards him. Carter was stunned by this event and fell victim to the Black Lantern Ralph Dibny. The two dead Hawks were then recruited into the Black Lantern Corps, where they go on to murder and torment many. In the final battle of Blackest night, several heroes are temporarily recruited into the White Lantern Corps and are able to sever the power of the Black Lanterns. The Entity of Life resurrects several of the formerly deceased heroes and villains including Hawkman and Hawkgirl. When Hawkgirl removes her mask it is Shiera that has been resurrected (body and soul), not Kendra.
In the New 52 relaunch, Kendra Munoz-Saunders alias Hawkgirl appears on Earth-2.
Major Story Arcs
Golden Age: Earth-Two
Shiera and Carter joined the All-Star Squadron together. It's important to note that Carter was also a member of the Justice Society of America in those early years. Shiera, however, was never an official member, though she did assist them from time to time. When the Justice Society disbanded in 1950, the two married and eventually had a son, Hector Hall. Due to exposure to radiation, the two did now age like normal human beings. The two would later come out of retirement to join the JLA, and help the new formed Justice Society. Their son would go on to become the Silver Scarab, and eventually die. Shiera met her end when she merged with Carter Hall and Katar Hol during the events of Zero Hour.
Silver Age: Earth-One
When Hawkman joined the Justice League of America, Hawkgirl had to join at a later date due to a rule that members join the JLA one at a time. Hawkgirl eventually changed her name to Hawkwoman. The Hawks were active members of the JLA for many years and survived many cataclysmic events such as the Crisis on Infinite Earths and a Martian invasion.
The aftermath of the Martian invasion resulted in a significant change of policy for the JLA that required full-time membership and the formation of the Justice League in Detroit. Unable to commit full-time to the JLA due to their civilian and Thanagarian duties, the Hawks and several members resigned from the JLA. The Hawks continued their defense of Earth which led to the Shadow War of Hawkman.
Modern Age: New Earth
Hawkgirl: Hell Hath Furies
The Furies were assigned a squadron of Parademons in order to find a stolen Beta-3 Gizmoid. They discover that the gizmoid has landed in St. Roch, Louisiana on Earth. According to their readings, the gizmoid has been activated and Bernadeth wants the gizmoid because Darkseid can't allow Earth to be destroyed by anything from Apokolips or it will mean war with High Father. It turns out Desaad designed these gizmoids to be a planet killer but production of the device was put on hold when a rogue Parademon escaped with a gizmoid through a Boom Tube. The Parademon landed in Ancient Egypt and hid the gizmoid before he was killed by Desaad's trackers.
The gizmoid finds itself near Stonechat Museum and it spots Hawkgirl soaring through the air. Its acquisition is computed as prognosticative Boolean algebra. The gizmoid decides that Hawkgirl would be a suitable template to begin Earth's eradication but before it could replicate itself, the Furies converge on its location by via Boom Tube. The gizmoid narrowly escapes by releasing radion gas to slow them down. Hawkgirl spots the disturbance and notices the Female Furies are barely conscious. The gizmoid comes up from behind Hawkgirl and pacifies her then it optimizes for template replication.
When the gizmoid was finished replicating, it disposed of Hawkgirl like a ragdoll and it became a mechanized version of Hawkgirl. The gizmoid begins attacking St. Roch with an arsenal of weaponry. Bernadeth tries to destroy the gizmoid with a series of centiblades but her attempt was unsuccessful. Fortunately, the Nth metal on Hawkgirl's wings became advanced by the gizmoid's brief attachment to her. Hawkgirl soars toward St. James Parish because the gizmoid was getting near that direction. Hawkgirl tells the Furies to focus their fire power on certain sections that she cuts off thereby cauterizing the wounds because the gizmoid can heal itself with nano machines.
Hawkgirl's plan worked and the gizmoid fell to pieces after sustaining the Furies' relentless punishment. As for Hawkgirl, the gizmoid's advancements wore off on her Nth metal because of its destruction and she became overly fatigued. Hawkgirl crashed near Mr. Dooley's Tavern and Bloody Mary followed soon after. Fortunately, Danny Evans was watching Hawkgirl's every move and he stopped Bloody Mary before she could sink her teeth into Hawkgirl's neck. The Female Furies collect Bloody Mary and reluctantly thanked Hawkgirl for her efforts.
With the two Hawks reunited, they are manipulated - like the others given back their lives - by the White Lantern effect in Brightest Day. Hath-Set in his current incarnation has recovered the skeletal remains of the previous versions of the Hawks and has constructed a planar gateway to a place called Hackwork. The two are captured by opposing humanoid races, Shiera by the bird-like race, Carter by the other mammal-like race.Carter confronts Queen Khea and finds out that her daughter is Hawkgirl. It is quickly revealed that Hath-Set is working with Hawkgirl's mother, Khea, who is the queen of Hawkworld. Shortly after this, Carter rallies the mammal race to help him rescue Shiera. Shiera manages to kill Hath-Set by breaking his neck, however Queen Khea is able to manipulate Nth metal and thus defeats Carter, adding him alongside Shiera.
The Hawks are then freed from their captor by Star Sapphire, Carol Ferris and the predator. However the predator merges with Queen Khea. They both stab the queen and the predator entity at the same time Zamoronian crystals. Hawkgirl had early snapped the neck of Hath-Set and in doing so stopped all of the hawks from resurrecting. The corpses of the past lives of the Hawks attack Queen Khea and place her in the Zamaron Power Battery. The Hawks are then transported back to St. Roch with the death of Hath-Set, Queen Khea and their missions accomplished. Deadman interrupts the Hawks moments after arriving. Deadman tells them they must live apart. Hawkman says he will never live apart from Sheira again.
The white ring then turns them into dust. Deadman screams at the ring to turn them back and the ring responds to Deadman that Hawkgirl was brought back to overcome what she could not in past incarnations and that it was essential in saving the Earth. Following the restoration of the Green in the final battle in Star City Forest, Shiera's essence was primarily used to restore Swamp Thing, bringing Carter back to life again and resume his identity as Hawkman while Shiera was brought to restart her life cycle again in a new body, leaving Carter more than ever enraged at losing his wife yet again.
Powers and Abilities
As a result of the Nth metal in her possession, Hawkgirl possesses super strength. This metal incorporated into technology also grants her the power of flight. She is a weapons expert in most melee weapons but is usually carrying her signature mace (made from Nth metal) and a dart gun (designed by the Mole). As Shiera, she was exposed to radiation that granted her longevity, this combined with her curse of reincarnation makes her nearly immortal.
Black Lantern Ring
Hawkgirl possessed a black lantern ring for a time.
- Shiera Sanders- 5' 4"
- Kendra Saunders- 5' 6"
- Shiera Sanders- 115 lbs
- Kendra Saunders- 131 lbs
- Shiera Sanders- Brown
- Kendra Saunders- Green
- Shiera Sanders- Brown
- Kendra Saunders- Black
- Citizenship: American
- Place of Birth: Texas, U. S. A.
- Marital Status: Single
- Occupation: Adventurer
- Known Relatives: Michael Saunders (father, deceased), Trina Saunders (mother, deceased), Cyril "Speed" Saunders (grandfather), Mia Saunders (daughter), Shiera Sanders Hall (great grandaunt), Carter Hall (great granduncle), Hector Hall (second cousin), Norda Cantrell (adoptive cousin), Hippolyta Trevor-Hall (cousin), Daniel Hall (third cousin), Death (third cousin), Destiny (third cousin), Destruction (third cousin), Delirium (third cousin), Desire (third cousin)
In another retcon, an earthling named Sharon Parker replaced the Silver Age Hawkgirl as Hawkwoman during the story arcs in Millennium and in Invasion! Sharon Parker first appeared in (Hawkworld #21). It was not determined which version of Hawkwoman was to appear in the Shadow War of Hawkman mini-series, whether Sharon appeared in the 1986 Hawkman series or if those events still occurred in the continuity of the DC Universe. Sharon was ultimately murdered by an alternate version of Hawkman, Fel Andar, in (Hawkworld #23).
Justice League and Justice League Unlimited
Hawkgirl gained a whole new popularity in the Justice League and Justice League Unlimited Cartoon series. In the cartoons her real name is Shayera Hol. She is one of the original seven members of the league, though Hawkman does not appear until the last season of Justice League Unlimited. Instead, Hawkgirl is revealed to have a romantic attraction for John Stewart, a Green Lantern. Their relationship is strongly hinted at throughout the first and second seasons, coming to a climax in the second part of the episode: "Wild Cards," where they finally confess their love for each other and kiss.
But this relationship turns sour in the following episode "Starcrossed," when it is revealed that Hawkgirl is secretly a spy for her people and engaged to the commander of their army. When the League and the Thanagarians disagree, she sides with her people, betraying the League in the process. However, when she discovers that the Thanagarians are planning to destroy Earth in order to save Thanagar, she attempts to help out the League. It is her help that ultimately leads to the Justice League's victory over the invaders.
The members of the Justice League decide to have a discussion over whether they should kick Hawkgirl out of the group or not. However, she chooses to quit the group before hearing their decision. After one last moment with John, in which she reveals her love for him, she flies off into the sunset, not to appear again until Justice League Unlimited.
Hawkgirl's next appearance is at the end of the first season episode of JLU, "The Return." She is revealed to have been living with Dr. Fate and his wife ever since her disappearance. She next appears in the episode "Wake the Dead," because of the rebirth of a villain whom she had been friends with, Solomon Grundy. She meets John again, who is revealed to still possess feelings for her, despite his new girlfriend, Vixen. He tells Hawkgirl that she had not been voted out of the League and invites her to join again. She agrees and begins to mend fences with various members of the group.
In order to feel more with the public she doesn't wear her mask and Thanagarian armor. She tries to make herself more humanly as possible since people still remembered what happened in the past. Despite what others think of her she still continues to pull through and be there for her friends.
Two members who have a difficult time trusting her are Wonder Woman and Vixen. Diana, who voted against Hawkgirl's return to the League, feels betrayed by her teammate. However, the two are able to make up after a mission in "The Balance." Vixen, on the other hand, dislikes Shayera because John still loves her. They clash in the episode "Hunter's Moon," but at the end become friends.
The episode "Hunter's Moon" is also important, because it ties up several loose strings from "Starcrossed." The surviving members of the Thanagarian fleet are hunting down Hawkgirl in order to punish her for treason. They reveal that Thanagarian lost the war, news which saddens Shayera, who is still attached to her homeland.
Hawkgirl and Lantern's relationship is again addressed in JLU second season episodes: "Shadow of the Hawk" and "Ancient History." Within "Shadow of the Hawk," Carter Hall, or Hawkman, makes his first appearance. He is a scientist who becomes interested in Shayera, something which makes John jealous. Carter later reveals that he is the incarnation of a Thanagarian soldier who crashed in Egypt several centuries ago and that Shayera is his reincarnated wife. Because he discovers these memories by touching a piece of ancient Thanagarian technology, Hawkgirl refuses to believe him, telling him that the technology corrupted his mind.
However, in the later episode "Ancient History," Shayera, John, and Carter are all forced to touch the machine, and discover that they are the reincarnated versions. However, instead of Carter's original version of Shayera and him as fated lovers, they discover that Shayera and John were actually the fated lovers from Egypt. This news forces Carter to reconsider his feelings for Hawkgirl, and he decides to let her go, saying that they both know who she is really supposed to be with. Shayera then goes to talk to John, who disappoints her expectations by revealing that he still loves her, but that he wants to stay with Vixen.
However, it is revealed in the 2-part episode "The Once and Future Thing" that John and Shayera end up married and having a son, Rex Stewart (named for John's friend Rex Mason, a.k.a. Metamorpho), who used his mother's Thanagarian technology as Warhawk, a member of the Justice League Unlimited. In the show Batman Beyond, Warhawk aided the future Batman, Terry McGuiness, and the other leaguers in saving Earth from an alien parasite.
The character seems to share more in common with Hawkwoman though. The name Shayera Hol was the name of the Silver Age Hawkwoman as well as being a Thanagarian which was Hawkwoman. The character seems to only resemble Hawkgirl in her reincarnated destiny trait.
Justice League Appearances:
- First Mission (Promo Pilot)
- Secret Origins Parts Two & Three
- In Blackest Night Parts One & Two
- Injustice for All Parts One & Two
- War World Parts One & Two
- The Brave and the Bold Part Two
- Fury Parts One & Two
- Legends Parts One & Two
- Metamorphosis Parts One & Two
- Savage Time Parts One to Three
- Twilight Parts One & Two
- Tabula Rasa Parts One & Two
- Only a Dream Parts One & Two
- Hearts and Minds Parts One & Two
- A Better World Part One
- A Better World Part Two
- Eclipsed Part Two
- Secret Society Parts One & Two
- The Terror Beyond Parts One & Two
- Hereafter Parts One & Two
- Comfort and Joy
- Wild Cards Parts One & Two
- Starcrossed Parts One to Three
Justice League Unlimited Appearances:
- The Return
- Wake the Dead
- The Once and Future Thing: Weird Western Tales
- The Once and Future Thing: Time Warped
- The Balance
- Hunter's Moon
- Panic in the Sky
- Divided We Fall
- I Am Legion
- Shadow of the Hawk
- Grudge Match
- Ancient History
Hawkgirl's helmet and arsenals appear in the Smallville episode "Absolute Justice". The character later appears to Carter Hall in a vision as he talks to Lois Lane, indicating his time in his current life was almost up before he could see her again reincarnated in another life together. Here she appears as Shayera Hall although without her costume. Shayera is portrayed as by Sahar Biniaz.
Justice League Heroes
Hawkgirl was a playable character in the game Justice League Heroes voiced be Collette Whittaker. She is unlocked by buying her for 70 shields collected from the game. The profile included is that of Kendra's.
DC Universe Online
Hawkgirl appears in DC Universe Online voiced by Lana Langsley, this Hawkgirl is based on the Kendra Saunders version.
Lego Batman 2
Hawkgirl is a playable character.
Injustice Gods Among Us
Hawkgirl is a playable fighter in this Netherealm Studio video game. She has her own moves lists, super moves, and an alternate costume from her other dimensional self.
Awards and Honours
Hawkgirl was ranked 80th in Comics Buyer's Guide Presents: 100 Sexiest Women in Comics