This page is for the second Blue Beetle, Ted Kord
For the original Blue Beetle see Dan Garret
For the third Blue Beetle, see Jaime Reyes
Ted Kord started his career as the Blue Beetle when he was just a college student. While in college he started to work for his uncle Jarvis Kord. He is mostly kept in the dark for the duration of the project but later finds a small box containing a map of and a reel of film. The film reveals that his uncle’s secret project was in fact a collection of evil experiments to create an army of super-androids to be used for his own megalomaniac means. Not knowing what to do, Ted turns to his college professor Dan Garrett. Dan promises to help Ted and they travel to Pago Island (the location of Jarvis' secret lab). Arriving on Pago Island Ted and Dan were immediately captured by his uncle’s advanced androids. They soon learned Jarvis was alive and planed to carry out his scheme for world conquest. Dan was forced into revealing his identity as the Blue Beetle to Ted when Jarvis ordered his androids to kill them both. In the battle Jarvis causes an explosion resulting in his death and mortally wounding Dan as well. Knowing he was dying, Dan asked Ted to keep the secret and carry on in his place as the Blue Beetle. Feeling just as responsible as his uncle for what had transpired, Ted agrees to Dan’s request. Before anything else could be said a cave-in causes Ted to be separated from Dan. Dan is buried in the rubble along with magical scarab that gave him super-powers.
Ted goes back home to Hub City, unable to fill in his mentor's shoes but wanting desperately to carry on the Blue Beetle Mantle. He graduates from college and starts working in his own lab. He becomes a brilliant inventor, keeping his best inventions for himself to fight crime. He starts going through a rigorous physical training program to develop an athletic body. With his scientific know-how, Ted develops an arsenal of gadgets and constructs an aircraft, simply called The Bug, made from unfinished experiments left by his absent father, Thomas Kord. Another one of Ted's inventions is his less-than-lethal side arm. This shoots out a compressed blast of air usually knocking his opponent over and sometimes even knocking them out. He also modeled it to shoot an extremely bright light that would temporally blind his opponent.
As a brilliant inventor Ted becomes very successful and falls in love with his lab assistant, Tracey. Despite all his success and love he is continually harassed by a detective Max Fisher. Max believes ted had something to do with Dan's death and he continually drops by the lab. To clear Ted's name Tracey goes to Pago Island and Ted follows and tells her his origin. As Ted finished his tale to Tracey they are attacked by two of his uncle’s super-powered androids that had failed to be destroyed earlier. Ted manages to send the two androids down into a crevice and uses the “The Bug” to drop rocks, permanently sealing them below the surface. Ted would carry on as the Blue Beetle fighting such villains as the Madmen, the Squids, a cult called “The Men of the Mask”, Enigma and the Destroyer. The latter villain would lead Ted to team up with the enigmatic vigilante, The Question ( Vic Sage )
Ted was created by Steve Ditko and originally published b Charlton Comics. He first appeared as a back-up in the Captain Atom comic. Ditko is most famously known as the co-creator with Stan Lee on the Spider-man comics. As such this new Blue Beetle shares a lot of similarities with Spider-man. They both take on bug-related monikers, employ acrobatic movesets, are known scientists and inventors, and are regular wise-crackers.
Originally, Ted started out in Charlton Comics but in only a hand-full of issues. Kord had no where near the long standing nor the popularity of the original Blue Beetle in his heyday at this point time. He would later appear in other companies' books the Dan Garrett version coming back. These would sometimes contradict each other and ignore the past, muddling up the two characters. Later they both would be bought by DC Comics. DC Comics settled on the Charlton versions of these two characters as canon and ignored the Golden Age Blue Beetle and all the content that came between Charlton and DC Comics.
Later, Blue Beetle, along with other Charlton heroes acquired by DC, was introduced into the DC Universe by means of the Crisis on Infinite Earths maxi-series. In the epic adventure that destroyed DC’s Multiverse, the Charlton characters were revealed to have existed on Earth-4. Their Earth along with Earth’s 1, 2, S and X were the only surviving Earths, which ended up converging into a singe “New” Earth. Ted played a major role in the Crisis and was one of the first heroes summoned by the Harbinger in the Monitor ’s fight against the Anti-Monitor. The Blue Beetle debuted as a DC character in Crisis on Infinite Earths #1.
The original stories of the Ted Kord, Blue Beetle took place in the 1960's in Charlton Comics. For the most part these stories were kept as canon when DC Comics took over the character. Ted's origin stayed largely the same. There were some different stories that came later with other publishers, but these were mostly ignored by DC.
Modern Age: New Earth
There were many attempts to bring back the Dan Garret as Blue Beetle. This was never more pronounced than in the time between the Charlton and DC Years. One had a robotic Dan Garret that was buried on Pago Island. Not having been fully programmed, the robot took on the personality of Dan as the Blue Beetle. When the robot comes to Hub City, Ted is convinced at first that he is the real Dan Garrett and almost gives up being the Blue Beetle himself. He eventually realizes his error and destroys the robot.
Another story attempts to explain the two different origins of the original Blue Beetle by making a third version. In the story Dan is brought back to life by two unnamed gods. They explain Dan has been resurrected before and it is time to resurrect him again. When they resurrect him they provide for him a new life as a secret agent. Ted Kord is also a secret agent in this story. The two of them work together and the story ends with two Blue Beetles.
As stated earlier, DC Comics largely ignored the other modern age stories and picked up where Charlton left off. This was started during the Crisis on Infinite Earths. Just after Crisis he was given his own series that lasted twenty-four issues.
Major Story Arcs
Modern Age: New Earth
Post - Crisis on Infinite Earths
During the Crisis on Infinite Earths, Ted's Universe and Earth (known as Earth-4) is merged with four other Earths. The merging of these worlds changed aspects of many people but only altered Ted and his origin slightly. His girlfriend and lab partner, Tracey, was not brought over from his Charlton days. In his youth, it’s revealed that Ted first started working in the Research & Development deptartment for his father’s business, KORD Industries. In addition, Ted’s college friend, Dan Garrett, was revealed to be one of his college professors. Most notably his home city becomes Chicago instead of Charlton's fictional Hub City. The Question also make this city his base.
Ted Becoming the Blue Beetle
Ted goes to college only this time he become friends with Murray Takamoto who was almost as brilliant as Ted and goes on to work at S.T.A.R. Labs. He then took over his father's company, K.O.R.D. Incorporated. Ted would go on to fight such villains such as Firefist, Dr. Alchemy, Chronos, The Hybrid, Overthrow, and of course his perennial nemeses the Madmen. Ted also faced the last android on Jarvis Kord's island that laid in stasis for years, Carapax. After Ted followed Chicago Police Lieutenant Maxwell Fisher's search party for Dan Garrett to the island. After saving Fisher from Carapax, Ted could not help but reveal himself to Max. On the condition that Max would not reveal his identity, Ted would assist Lieutenant Fisher on his most difficult cases.
Again, Dan Garrett was revealed to be alive when Dan crawls out of the rubble on Pago Island. As soon as he does he calls on the spirit of Pharaoh Kha-eh-Re who tells him to kill Ted Kord. Dan later resists Kha-eh-Re and discovers a possible alien connection to his magical scarab. In the end Dan dies once again and the scarab is destroyed.
Ted first joined the Justice League when it re-formed following the nationwide anti-hero brainwashing by Glorious Godfrey during the Legends Crisis. He became an mainstay of the league for many years and fought such villains as Despero , Overlord , Eclipso and Dr. Destiny. It was also during this time with the League that he made many of his lifelong friends like Fire, Ice, Mister Miracle, the Martian Manhunter and of course his best friend Booster Gold. Booster Gold and Beetle become good friends, business partners, and even partners-in crime in the many pranks they pull in the League like sabotaging Guy Gardner's date with Ice and buying all the Oreo Cookies in New York city to mess with the Martian Manhunter's Oreo addiction.The two would be referred often as the “Blue and Gold”.
Though Ted was best known as a prankster, he was highly respected for his scientific genius. His ship, the Bug, became the main transportation for the league and he was in the lab so much he started to loose his edge as a fighter and even gained weight. This was a big problem for Ted and is something he struggled with for a long time. He was eventually helped back to fighting shape by General Glory and set up a non-powered boxing match with Guy Gardner. Ted was winning the match, but Guy lost his temper and hit Beetle between rounds when his back was turned. When Beetle fell Guy didn't let up, enraging several Leaugers.
Ted also was injured badly in his many fights during his stint with the League ,suffering at least two comas. The worst coming in the battle with Doomsday, which lasted for a long period of time. When Ice apparently died at the hands of the Overlord, Ted and Booster Gold joined Captain Atom's darker team called Extreme Justice.
From there Ted and Captain Atom became a part of the group called the L.A.W. (Living Assault Weapons), which consisted of many former Charlton properties, in order to stop Judomaster’s sidekick, Tiger, now Avatar and his personal attacks on the warmongers of the world. At the end of this mission, Ted would take a hiatus from his identity as the Blue Beetle.
Ted and Oracle
Ted would go on to meet Barbara Gordon (Oracle) as internet chat buddies. The two started out not knowing the others’ identity, but would eventually solve each others’ alter ego before finally meeting in person. In the course of their friendship the two became close, with Ted developing a strong crush on Barbara.
This also led Ted to begin working with Barbara, providing her with an aircraft for transportation, and also restarted his super-hero career. Not soon after, we learn Ted developed a heart condition, but he continued his heroics. At one point the scarab believed to be that of Dan Garrett, which Ted thought was destroyed, was actually discovered by Carter Hall (Hawkman) in a tomb in Egypt. Ted acquired the scarab, but couldn’t get it to work for him the way it worked for his mentor Dan. During the course of Ted investigating what the origin of OMAC , the scarab is activated by a flash of lightning and leads Ted to the wizard Shazam. There it remained for a short period until Shazam’s death by Eclipso (Jean Loring ). This scarab would eventually fall to Earth and make its way to and into the hands of Jaime Reyes.
The Death of Ted Kord
As Ted begins to rebuild his, life he is told by Barbara that funds are being withdrawn from K.O.R.D. Omniversal through Waynetech and put into various dummy corporations. She gives Ted a name of one of the projects the money has been going into, O.M.A.C. Ted sets out to discover the culprit behind the treachery. Ted tries to incorporate help from the rest of the hero community, but few take him seriously. He receives help from his long-time friend Booster Gold, who ends up in the hospital from a “bolt of lightning” meant for Ted. After fending off an attack by the Madmen, Ted discovers a clue hidden in his shattered goggles. He finds a transmitting device belonging to Booster’s long missing security robot Skeets. Ted painstakingly traces the signal from the device to a stronghold in the Swiss Alps.
Ted discovers the base belongs to Checkmate with computer files containing data on every super-human on Earth. He also discovered the O.M.A.C. project as a subfile under Bruce Wayne . Ted surmised that Maxwell Lord was behind it all, just before he reveals himself to Ted. As the Black King, Maxwell schemed to use Checkmate and the O.M.A.C. project to ensure that metahumans, including superheroes, will be kept under surveillance and controlled by humans. Maxwell offers Ted to join him or suffer the consequences. A hero til the end, Ted refuses and Lord shoots him in the head.
Booster Gold tries to rewrite time
Booster Gold is asked by Rip Hunter for his help to set the timeline right. Booster agrees, but with the stipulation that they go back in time and save Ted Kord. Hunter tries to dissuade him as he makes Booster witness Barbara Gordon’s crippling attack over and over again. As Booster was about to accept Ted’s unfortunate fate, a future Blue Beetle arrives with past Blue Beetle, Dan Garrett and current Blue Beetle Jaime Reyes. The future Beetle claims the saving of Ted Kord’s life is essential. Despite pleading by Rip Hunter, Booster and the three Beetles go back in time and save Ted before he was shot by Maxwell Lord. However, when Booster and Ted return to the future they discover Lord and his O.M.A.C.’s turned the Earth into a police state.
Booster and Ted encounter a version of Hawkman and Green Arrow leading a resistance team against Lord and a mind-controlled Superman. Eventually the two would gather their past teammates of the Justice League International . During the battle, the future Beetle is revealed to be Black Beetle, a future villain of Jaime Reyes. Also, Black Beetle reveals his own secret team called the Time Stealers, consisting of Per Degaton, Ultra-Humanite, Despero and Booster’s dad, John Carter (under the control of Mr. Mind).
As Ted watched his friends killed off one after another, he realizes the only way to set things right is to go back in time and die as he was supposed to. Black Beetle tries to prevent this and he and Ted disappear in a Time Sphere. Booster Gold believes things have been set right again, but a shadowy figure turns up at a Kord Industries warehouse holding a glowing scarab and laughing like Ted Kord.
Black Lantern Ted Kord
Despite his apparent rebirth, Ted Kord is merely reanimated by a Black Power Ring as a Black Lantern in a tie-in to the Blackest Night storyline. Because he is unable to to locate Booster Gold due to his new time-travelling duties, Black Lantern Kord lures him in the open by targeting his 21 century ancestry Daniel Carter and Rose Levin. With the help of a Black Lantern BB Gun he is able to beat Supernova, Skeets, and the third Blue Beetle, until Booster arrives. Booster is able to stop Ted, and bury his remains in the location in which time is nonexistent.
Powers and Abilities
Ted Kord possesses genius-level intelligence with an IQ of 192. Having no super-human powers, Ted trained to become an Olympic level acrobat with impressive hand-to-hand combat skills. He has also attained a high degree of skill in espionage and martial arts, proficient in Karate and Aikido.
Ted’s costume is made up a metal-mesh fabric with cybernetic circuitry impeded in his gloves which operate functions in his cowl and his high tech aircraft called “The Bug”. Ted’s cowl has a locking mechanism that can only be unlock by the touch of a chip in his gloves.
Ted’s aircraft, "The Bug", carries a vast amount of high tech equipment and is capable of high speeds. It can electrify or magnetize its hull and possesses air tight capability that allows it to submerge in water or hover in orbit. The Bug can be summoned by remote control through the circuitry in Ted’s gloves and drop a sky-wire down for him to hang by or reel himself up. Ted has gone through various models of The Bug over the years.
The BB gun is a less-than-lethal hand held weapon. It’s designed to create a blinding flash of light or a high compressed air blast capable of felling a charging rhino.
DC Animated Universe
Blue Beetle never appeared in any DCAU television shows but did appear in series tie-in comic books several times, especially in the Justice League Unlimited comic book.
Ted Kord appears as Blue Beetle during Kingdom Come. He joins Batman's Legion and is killed by the nuclear explosion in the final battle.
Other Media and Board Games
Batman the Brave and the Bold
Ted appears in Batman the Brave and the Bold episode "Fall of the Blue Beetle" he teams up with Batman against his uncle and ends up sacrificing himself, less violent death for younger viewers. Ted has appeared in several other episodes in flashbacks, including a team-up with Booster Gold.
In the Season 10 episode called Booster, Ted Kord is played by Sebastian Spence. This version of Ted Kord never became the second Blue Beetle.
Instead, he is the CEO of Kord Industries which develops and studies advanced alien technology. Ted receives help from Booster Gold to search for the missing Beetle tech. The missing beetle was found and attached to a young student named Jaime Reyes who later becomes the Blue Beetle. Booster convinces Jaime to control the beetle suit and was succeeded. Later, Ted was impressed that Jaime was able to control the suit and wanted it back. However, Jaime convinces Ted to keep the suit so that he can become a superhero like Booster Gold.
Young Justice: Invasion
Ted is mentioned in the episode "Salvage," though he never appears directly. Jaime Reyes explains that Ted was the previous Blue Beetle and that he was murdered by the Light (a cabal of villains consisting of Vandal Savage, Ra's al Ghul, Lex Luthor, Queen Bee, Klarion, the Brain and Ocean Master) before the series began.
In the episode "The Undertaking", Ted Kord was mentioned by Moira Queen that they attended another of his fundraisers.
Blue Beetle II was produced in the 2002 series and again when the DC 10 years of Heroclix set was produced.