Recently appearing in a one shot as part of The New 52, (though printed under the National Comics imprint) Kid Eternity has had the bulk of his history revised (by creators Jeff Lemire and Cully Hamner) and is now a resurrected Police coroner with daddy issues, though still possessing the ability to raise the spirits of the dead.
During WWII, A boy and his grandfather were mistakenly killed by a Nazi Submarine whilst on their boat. The grandfather died and was granted access to Heaven, but the boy was not meant to die for another 75 years. So, he was sent back to live the remainder of the life he was supposed to live as Kid Eternity, an agent of chaos.While Kid was dead, a spirit named Mr. Keeper approached him and gave him a unique power that he carried back with him to the living. By thinking their name and saying ETERNITY, the kid could summon forth the spirit on any historical or mythological figure.
Because of the trauma of dying, the boy could not remember his name, just that his grandfather had always called him "Kid". It was later discovered that Kid's grandfather had always called him Kit, not Kid, and it was short for his full name: Christopher Freeman. Apparently, he and Freddy Freeman, who was otherwise known as Captain Marvel Jr. were brothers. Both being orphaned at the same time, one boy was given to each of their grandfathers.
Kid Eternity was created for the now defunct publisher, Quality Comics in 1942. Created by Otto Binder and Sheldon Moldoff, Kid Eternity first appeared in issue 25 of Hit Comics as the cover featured star until his popularity grew sufficiently to warrant his eponymous own title in 1946. When the bottom fell out of the comics industry in the post war climate of the late 40's, Kid Eternity found his title, as many others before, cancelled and his starring spot in Hit Comics lost to non-superhero, Jeb Rivers.
It wasn't until the early 1970's that DC decided to revive the Kid Eternity character, resurrecting him into an alternate earth away from their mainstream continuity. Whereas most of the Quality characters bought by DC existed on an alternate world called Earth X, the powers that be decided that Eternitys' powers so resembled those of the Captain Marvel family, that he should be resurrected there. So it was that, the newly christened Christopher Freeman found a new home amongst the Marvel family on Earth-S.
Becoming a strong supporting character in the Marvel family, eventually even some of Eternitys' old villains, Her Highness and Silk garnered their own appearances also.
Unfortunately, along with many other characters, Kid Eternity and the Marvels earth was merged with the main continuity earth during DC's streamlining event, Crisis On Infinite Earths. This systematically ceased the adventures of the Captain Marvel family and Kid Eternity for the next few years as the new continuity was put into place.
In 1991, Kid Eternity was reintroduced by DC's mature reader imprint (which would officially become known as Vertigo in 1993) for a three issue mini series by creators, Grant Morrison and Duncan Fegredo. Morrison was hot from his relatively recent breakthrough with his Arkham Asylum graphic novel and Fegredo, was about to launch his highly acclaimed series, Enigma with Peter Milligan. These two books, along with the Kid Eternity mini were a precursor to DC introducing their Vertigo line.
Much darker in tone than the previous versions, this Kid Eternity is now only know as 'Kid' and his origin is greatly revised. In Morrisons' vision, The Kid was taken on board the ship, not by his Grandfather, but by a sexual deviant known as 'Gran'Pa.' When the Lords Of Chaos bring 'Gran'Pa's' soul into hell, they also have Kid killed with him, though in this version he is gunned down in the water after their boat is rammed by the U Boat. Also, in this version, the heaven that Kid finds himself in after dying in is a construct, made by the Lords Of Chaos to help him serve them. Needing an agent, an intermediary between the physical and astral plane, The Lords Of Chaos give the 'kid' the power to summon protectors, (who are actually demons in disguise) and to become incorporeal, to dematerialise and various other, undisclosed abilities.
Mister Keeper, too, is revised, now being a servant of Hell who has lied to Kid to help him build constructs known as 'chaospheres' around the world. These devices serve to harness chaos energy, which will eventually be released and hasten the evolution of man. The Lords Of Chaos are seeking to bring about something called, The Apocalypse Of Eschaton, where the forces of chaos and order will be destroyed and all will be pure and equal again. The Lords Of Order, having grown lofty in their self righteousness had ordered killers, the Schichiriron to stop him.
Returning to Hell with a human, Jerry, who is, seemingly destined to become the father of the first 'ascended' child, Kid reunites with Mister Keeper and learns the truth of his origins. Seemingly happy to be a part of the Lord Of Chaos' plans, Kid stands in defiance of the Lords Of Order and builds the final chaosphere which will bring about cataclysmic change to the world of mortals.
The original mini having finished on this note, Ann Nocenti and Sean Phillips put their own stamp on the character in their own Vertigo ongoing for the character, beginning in 1993. The run began with Kid Eternity looking for the current incarnation of the Dalai Lama. During the course of this story he permanently resurrected the Greek Gods from death, so that he could use the powers of Cupid to aid him. Eternitys' powers are more in line with that of a magicians in this run, as opposed to being a super powered individual and shares an enormous amount in common, thematically, tonally and visually with the Shade, The Changing Man series which had begun in 1990.
By the end of the series (issue 16), we discover that Kid Eternity isn't a kid at all, but just refuses to let himself age due to childhood trauma. The series ends with Kid driving a car into the sunset with his friends in a search for a woman called Hope, who might be able to tell him who his parents were.
Kid Eternitys' unceremonious reappearance in the DC universe proper was seemingly as a sacrificial lamb, as he was instantly killed at the hands of Mordru in JSA #1. It was Mordrus' intention to kill all agents of chaos so that he could claim the and the reborn spirit of Dr. Fate (in the form of Hector Hall), making his artifacts and his powers his own. Eternity was to reappear in a later issue of the Justice Society (issue 48), though it is unclear weather it was his spirit or not. Seemingly, none of the revised history of Kid followed him from Vertigo back into the mainstream continuity.
The Kid's next appearance was in issue 31 of Teen Titans, where the kid was being used by the most recent incarnation of Brother Blood to hold open the doorway of life and death, thus causing dead Titans to rise. Raven and Beast-Boy stumble upon the Kid and attempt to free him, though Brother Blood raises Gizmo, Madam Rouge and Grant Wilson from the dead in order to defeat the titans. During the struggle Beast boy grabs the deceased Ravager's sword and uses it to cut the chains binding Kid Eternity, freeing him from Brother Blood's control. Enraged by his imprisonment, Christopher uses his power to return the undead to the earth and rescues the Titans from Brother Blood. In revenge for Blood's actions Eternity raises the previous seven generations of Brother Blood, who in turn proceed to rip apart the young villain. His work finished, Freeman leaves the scene of conflict, though he is stopped by the Titan Mia Dearden who questions why Eternity could not use his power to resurrect the team's dead members. Freeman responds by stating that the dead Titans' souls had moved on and that the current team should enjoy life while they still could.
Though he was free, it was unclear weather or not he was alive due to the fact that he had not been seen since, until Osiris mentions, on the pages of 52, that he had fought Mr. Keeper with the kid letting the reader know that he was in fact alive. This was somewhat contradicted by Eternitys' next appearance, where he is seemingly a prisoner of Hell.
Kid Eternity next appearance was in Teen Titans # 67, where he fought the resurrected form of Brother Blood. It was revealed that Eternitys' power was now severly limited, enabling him to only summon one spirit at a time and for a duration of roughly a minute. During his battle with Blood, both are returned to earth where they once again encounter the Teen Titans. Eternity decides to help a recently de-powered Red Devil figure out his contract in hell. Whilst there, Eternity reveals that he no longer wishes to work for either Chaos or Order and that Mister keeper had tried to steal his power from him. He also reveals that a Lord Of Order named Sister Mercy had come to his aid and that it was her who limited his powers, whilst also being the one to offer him freedom.. if he can find her. Following this mission, Kid Eternity becomes an official member of the Teen Titans.
During his time with the Teen Titans Kit didn't feel like he fit in with the team, as many of the other members asked him to bring back their dead loved ones. However Eternity and Wonder Girl do create a friendship, based mostly on the fact that Wonder Girl is the only Titan that has not asked him to bring anybody back from the dead.
During the battle with the new Fearsome Five, Kid Eternity is kidnapped and held hostage by the Calculator in issue 74. During his incarceration, Kit is forced to constantly bring Marvin White, the deceased son of Calculator and a former Teen Titan, back from the dead for his fathers pleasure. Unluckily for Kid Eternity, the rest of the Teen Titans do not realize that he has been abducted but instead have assumed that he simply quit the team.
In another, seeming lack of respect for the character, it is not until issue 92 that we find out that Kid Eternity was, in actual fact, murdered by a robot duplicate of Calculator. After Calculator realised that Kid Eternity was only able to channel Marvin for about a minute a time, he apparently tortured and then murdered him, showing footage of his capture and torture to his team mates. Duplicate Calculator is defeated by the Titans and Kid Eternity is never mentioned again before the DC relaunch, The New 52.
The New 52
Appearing in National Comics, Chrisopher Freeman is the son of a detective who often argued with his father until they were both shot about a year before the story. He died, but somehow came back and gained the ability to return to the afterlife and bring back spirits for a time. He works as a coroner, but only retains the job because of how admired his dad was. Using his powers, he solves a murder only to discover that it was committed in self-defense. The next day, he reported to work with a far more positive attitude only to find the woman he has been admiring from afar on the autopsy table.
The tale was left open ended with, currently, no plans for a continuation of the series, or the character.
Powers And Abilities
Originally, Kid Eternity had the power to summon any historical or mythical figure (or figures) by saying the word 'Eternity.'
He was also able to use the word to become immaterial and/or invisible. Later, many different and undefined powers were added, including the ability to halt his ageing process, immortality and the unusual talent of being able to reduce himself to a thought and travel within someone's mind. These powers have been embellished or discarded as different creators took the character on (and when published by different companies), yet the one constant has been the ability to summon back the spirits of the dead for short amounts of time.