Dial H for Hero's Last Day on the Job

Going through the last issues of Superboy and the Ravers, and thus Hero Cruz's last appearances, there's a sense that Karl Kesel and co. were going to give a definite explanation for the Dial's powers, but don't quite reach it. Hero would eventually join Titans West (redubbed Titans L.A.) and chum with Chris King, but that team wouldn't last long, and Hero would not be seen again (aside from a couple of cameos in flashback panels), the Dial migrating to other parties. Chronologically, that makes Titans Secret Files and Origins #2 (Oct 2000) the last time we see him in action, and therefore, the last time he uses Vicki's old pendant Dial. Set your trackers.

Case 64: Superboy and the Ravers #14-19, The Titans Secret Files and Origins #2
Dial Holder: Hero Cruz
Dial Type: Pendant Dial
Dialing: Hero turning into Isis marks the first time someone dials a hero not of their sex. Not covered below, Hero also becomes a carbon copy of the Outsiders' Faust (except he is black as per all of Hero's identities); the only other time a Dial has produced a known hero was Robby Reed becoming Plastic Man (which happened twice). This time, Hero says he was wishing the fallen Faust were revived when he dialed. Hero has now embraced the fact that the heroes dialed are innately suited to the situation at hand and no longer redials if he doesn't see the use at first impression. When he becomes a healer, it is taken as the Dial's lack of faith in the Ravers' ability to survive an encounter, which may speak to a certain prescience in the Dial. At its most specific, the Dial turns Hero into a Predator hunter during a Predator attack. Hero's personal theory - never proven - is that each identity is a sliver of the dialer's subconscious; Vicki Grant's corroborating evidence is that when times were good, her identities were strong and beautiful, but when she started having problems, they were ugly monsters. Chris' identities were often more goofy, perhaps because he didn't take it seriously. While in Titans L.A., Hero once again has the one-hour limit, but can concentrate on the type of power he needs and get it, perhaps thanks to expertise shared by Chris King.
Name: Isis (Queen of the Gods! Sister and Wife to Osiris!)
Costume: A purplish pink summer dress with similarly colored boots and gloves, and vaguely Egyptian bling, including a belt, thigh and arm rings, elaborate neck piece, and gold tiara. The basics feel silly.
Powers: Can physically hold her own against a New God, so presumably the heightened attributes of most pantheonic gods in comics (strength, speed, toughness).
Sighted: During the Genesis event, fighting Granny Goodness.
Possibilities: DC once published a book called Isis, so they could again. That's a point in her favor. As Thor proved long ago, tapping into mythology can be the basis for a superhero book, and the Egyptian pantheon has a lot more potential than what Hawkman might be doing with it at any given time. Isis could be a contrast to Wonder Woman though, it can't be the same warrior woman comic. That's fine, because I happen to think Diana shouldn't be portrayed as a battling fury. From the looks of it here, Isis is. Needs a make-over if I'm going to take her seriously though.
Integration Quotient: 80% (lots of potential, get rid of the pink dress)
Name: Radio Ranger (sounds like a 1950s kid show)
Costume: Blue spandex (or is it armor?) with metal shoulder pads, a cowl with goggles, and in gold, flared gloves, boots, and a wide belt. His cape is green.
Powers: Unclear. He can at least fly, possibly on radio waves. The way his cowl is made looks like he might be able to capture and listen to signals.
Sighted: At the Rave, joining in the fun.
Possibilities: A modern-era Air Wave? Somehow, he has an even more dated code name though. So how about an actual 50s radio hero made flesh somehow? Perhaps as a sentient personality that enters a human host? He eventually goes up against the Construct in his own mini-series.
Integration Quotient: 80% (my premise is a little goofy, but a fun retro idea for a well-remembered 4-issue mini)
Name: Caduceus the Healer (it works, but you'd think he'd look more Grecian)
Costume: An older "primitive"-looking man with long hair and a forehead tattoo, wearing only a loin cloth, a leg strap, and a chain of gold pieces dangling from the waist. He carries a rough golden caduceus (today's symbol for medical services), with green snakes and a wrapped staff.
Powers: Caduceus uses his staff to heal people, or reduce their pain if they cannot be saved. He seems to sense pain and death and feels guided to those who need him most.
Sighted: On Qward, helping the Ravers survive an encounter with the Thunderers.
Possibilities: If DC has a comic set in the Ancient World, Caduceus could be a member of those "Extraordinary Gentlemen", because he's certainly a support player and not a headliner. Perhaps it's a tradition upheld through the modern era. He might fit a contemporary mystical team like Shadowpact.
Integration Quotient: 40% (there's someting there, but he seems a man out of time)
Name: The Viridian Paladin (how very anime)
Costume: Red and black sci-fi armor, with a long pleated blue cape. The armor has a ||| 00||| pattern on its larger pieces. The three-finned helmet has a purple face mask that hides the Paladin's face. He bears a long sword with an ornate golden pommel.
Powers: Bred and trained to kill Predators - the evil spirits of the Star Sapphires - his sword cuts through them and makes them disintegrate.
Sighted: Killing Predators on Qward.
Possibilities: Very specific, but the Green Lantern Color Wheel Mythos is elaborate enough to make use of it. In fact it would seem like there would be an entire army of Viridian Paladins hunting for Predators, and perhaps other malign presences from the various power batteries (Parallax, et al.).
Integration Quotient: 85% (Geoff Johns missed a trick there)
Name: Port (no, not the harbour - nooo, not the drink either)
Costume: A green and yellow outfit with armored plates (soft and hard) all through it. The helmet has a Cyclops visor. The belt features the letter "P".
Powers: The ability to teleport others to another location, and probably himself as well.
Sighted: At a Titans L.A. do, sending Duela Dent and her cronies to jail directly.
Possibilities: Port is a utility player for a team of young heroes, and one that can probably take care of himself physically as well or he wouldn't have an armored combat uniform. He looks good as a member of Titans L.A., which sadly never made much of a mark.
Integration Quotient: 50% (heroes with support powers and simple code names feels very 90s... have we moved beyond that?)

Next: The Dial in the 2990s.



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