5704 in-depth character profiles from comics, games, movies

Andrew Detmer (Dane DeHaan in Chronicle) with his camera

Andrew Detmer


Power Level:
Game system: DC Heroes Role-Playing Game

“It’s all fun and games until everybody gets hurt.”


Context

Chronicle is a 2012 movie depicting 3 young men who randomly gain powerful telekinetic  powers, and how things go pear-shaped. It was very well-reviewed, and commercially successful.


Background

  • Real Name: Andrew Detmer
  • Marital Status: Single
  • Known Relatives: Richard Detmer (father), Karen Detmer (mother, deceased), Matt Garetty (cousin)
  • Group Affiliation: None
  • Base Of Operations: Seattle, USA
  • Height: 5’9” Weight: 135 lbs
  • Eyes: Brown Hair: Black


Powers & Abilities

Andrew Detmer possessed the gift of telekinesis. He could move, lift, bend or even break solid matter with the strength of his mind alone.

Andrew’s gift was quite potent. He was capable of throwing a fully loaded bus over 100 yards away, crushing automobile frames, or simply projecting waves of pure telekinetic force capable of bowling over cars and people with ease.

In addition to his ability to manipulate matter, Andrew learned through trial and error to utilize his telekinetic gifts in a few novel ways. By focusing his telekinesis upon himself, he could levitate himself and even fly at moderate speeds.

He also discovered how to shield himself from physical harm, rendering him effectively invulnerable to physical impact.

Finally, through some unknown means Andrew developed a strong empathic bond with both Steve and Matt. Whenever Andrew felt a particularly powerful emotion, both Steve and Matt became immediately aware and were often drawn to his side.


Video

The trailer, also done in the “direct footage” style of the movie.


History

Andrew Detmer was a Seattle born teenager, who lived a sad and tormented existence. His mother, Karen, was slowly wasting away due the to the cancer that had invaded her lungs.

His father, Richard, had been a fire fighter before an injury had forced him to retire from the force. In his grief, Richard turned to alcohol, and began to orally and physically abuse Andrew.

As his home situation worsened, Andrew became more and more withdrawn. Soon, he became virtually invisible at school. The only exception to this situation seemed to be with a particular group of boys who tormented him whenever they crossed paths.

Whether it was boredom or a calculated move, Andrew made a decision that would eventually alter the course of his life. He cobbled together his savings and purchased a old shoulder mounted video camera, and began to record everything in his life.

The very first thing he recorded was his father attempting to break into his bedroom and assault him. When Richard realized that his actions were being recorded, he reluctantly left his son alone.

Later on that day, Andrew got a ride to school with his cousin Matt, who was the closest thing Andrew had to a friend. Matt was everything that Andrew wanted to be: tall, good looking, strong and most importantly confidant.

Last blow

As the two drove to school Matt tried to persuade Andrew to emerge from his shell and actually try to meet people. Andrew initially balked, but after spending the entire day being bullied and ridiculed for carrying around his camera, Andrew eventually agreed to accompany Matt to a “rave” later on that week.

Eventually, after dodging a local group of thugs who hung out at a nearby park, Andrew returned home and reviewed the events of the day. As he sat quietly, pleased with himself and his new “toy”, his father stormed into his and caught him unaware.

Before Andrew could react, Richard struck him hard across his head and hurled him to the floor, all the while warning him never to lock him out of his room again. As Richard left the room, he didn’t even notice that Andrew had left his camera on and had recorded the entire incident.

Moreover, the one thing that Richard didn’t know what that this would be the final time that he would strike his son with impunity.

EDM

On the night of the rave, everything seemed to be running to plan. Matt picked up Andrew fashionably late, and the two arrived at the party when it had hit full swing.

Matt led Andrew directly into the center of the din, but promptly abandoned him in the attempts to force him to mingle among the gyrating bodies within. Matt’s only piece of advice was to “lose the camera.” Andrew promptly ignored his cousin, and began to film the events of the rave, wandering from person to person.

A particularly attractive girl drew Andrew’s attention to her while she danced provocatively upon a raised platform. Andrew began filming her with earnest, until her rather large (and perturbed) boyfriend noticed him.

The angry young man immediately confronted Andrew and slapped him hard across the head and nearly broke his camera. Andrew, not knowing what to do, retreated in shame and found himself standing outside of the rave alone and despondent once more.

While he fiddled with the camera, Andrew found himself approached by a young, good-looking African American youth. The youth, who introduced himself as Steve, told Andrew that his cousin had asked him to come find him in order to record something “cool” that they found.

Unidentified Object

With little else to do, and more than a little flattered that Steve (who was one of the most popular boys in school) knew who he was, Andrew followed Steve quietly deep into the woods that surrounded the warehouse that contained the rave.

Andrew Detmer (Dane DeHaan) crushing a car

The two quickly found Matt, who was clearly inebriated, who led them to a large hole in the ground that was emitting a strange high pitched sound. Andrew filmed the whole, but in a moment of impetuousness, both Steve and Matt plunged into the hole to discover what was causing the sound.

Left with little choice, Andrew followed them down into the darkness. To his surprise, it didn’t remain dark that long.

Andrew found Steve and Matt staring with wonder at a large crystalline object that pulsed with an inner blue light. The three surrounded the object, with exclamations of excitement, each trying to surmise what it was.

Andrew recorded the entire proceeding, but as the three drew nearer to the object, it’s soft blue light rapidly altered to an angry red.

Steve reached out and touched the object, and as he did the sound emanating from it grew even louder and higher in pitch. Before the teens could react, each and every one of them were stricken with mind numbing pain and nosebleeds. As the pain reached a crescendo, Andrew passed out and dropped his camera.

Holy %$^#… I can fly!

When and how the three got out of the hole was a blur to Andrew, but the one thing he did know was that it took a couple of weeks for him to completely recover. But during that period of recovery, Andrew (along with Steve and Matt) discovered something.

Somehow, someway, the object had altered him. Somehow, he and his friends had developed the ability to move objects with the strength of their mind alone.

The three spent weeks discovering what they were capable of and what their practical limits were. Without even having to say it, the three kept their abilities to themselves, even while being filmed by Andrew (who had gotten a new camera after losing the original in the cave).

Eventually, when they grew curious enough, the three decided to return to the hole and try to figure out why they had gained their strange new abilities. The trip back to the hole was uneventful, but when they arrived, they discovered that the hole/cave had collapsed in on itself, and that the local authorities had cordoned off the area for safety.

Without answers, and little else to do, the three teens did what most teens would do with their abilities: they played pranks on the people who surrounded them. Initially, each boy would struggle to even hold a baseball aloft, but as they continued to push their abilities, they grew stronger and stronger.

Eventually they were strong enough to lift objects as large as cars and they eventually learned how to harness their strength to fly. And as a side-effect, with each new discovery, each prank and/or joke, the three developed a close bond that Andrew had never experienced before.

Warning Signs

However, nothing lasts forever. One day as the three laughed and joked, a particularly aggressive motorist in a souped up truck pulled up directly behind Matt’s car. Andrew who was sitting in the backseat, called the boys attention to the driver behind them and despite the other’s urging decided to play a joke on the stranger.

With the simple phrase of “Abracadabra”, Andrew waved his hand and unleashed a wave of telekinetic strength into the pickup truck. Sparks flew across the front of the truck as it careened off the road, down a hill and came to a stop up-sided down in a shallow lake that rested below.

Matt and Steve jumped into the lake and rescued the driver, who needed to be hospitalized, and upon discovering that he would live, fiercely admonished Andrew. Matt insisted that the three boys had rules, and that they would never use their powers against living people again. Andrew begrudgingly agreed, but a subtle under current of resentment was clear.

Over the next couple of days, the three attempted to mend fences between the group and decided that they would fly around the world together after they graduated high school. Andrew suggested that they go to Tibet, in order to meet the monks who resided there.

When the other two boys began to chide him, Andrew quieted down and mumbled that he wanted to see them because of the peaceful nature of the monks and the surroundings. Andrew wasn’t surprised when he saw the look of understanding flash across Matt’s face, and was grateful when his cousin agreed to make the trip with him.

Talent Show

Time continued to trudge on, and Andrew’s life didn’t become any less complicated. His wonderful mother grew sicker and sicker, while his father’s money dried up. It got to the point where they couldn’t afford her medication any longer.

Andrew retreated into the use of his powers and his obsession with filming his life. He practiced day and night with his power, and continued to grow stronger and stronger with each day.

Andrew also found himself spending more time with Steve, and the two shared their live stories. After hearing about the state of Andrew’s life, Steve encouraged him to enter the school talent show in order to gain popularity.

Chronicle poster

Andrew immediately balked at that idea, stating clearly that he had no talents. Steve merely smiled and raised an eyebrow at Andrew. Andrew looked at him dumbly for a second or two, until a slow smile spread across his face as well as understood Steve’s gist.

On the night of the show, Andrew went from a relative unknown to the most popular kid in school in a span of five minutes. He entertained the audience with a seemingly impossible display of magic tricks, juggling, and tightrope walking.

Monica

But the entertainment didn’t end there. After the show, Andrew when to celebrate at a house party, where a rather drunk Andrew entertained the crowd by decimating opponent after opponent at “Beer-Pong.”

As his euphoria hit heights he never knew it could, Andrew was approached by his classmate Monica, who led him upstairs away from the others and into a secluded bedroom of the house. The two seemed to be on the verge of a moment of intimacy, when Andrew’s excitement (and the alcohol) finally got to him.

Even as Monica prepared to perform fellatio upon him, Andrew vomited all over her. She ran out of the bedroom at the same moment when Steve came up to see if everything was okay. Seeing Andrew’s predicament (and being drunk himself), Steve tried to share a laugh with his friend.

Unfortunately, Andrew could only see that Steve was laughing at him. Humiliated, drunk and angry, Andrew stormed out of the party.

The Last Straw

Days past, and Andrew refused to have any contact with his friends. As he watched his mother grow weaker and weaker, he became more and more withdrawn and hostile. It was during this time that his father discovered that Andrew had bought his new camera.

Richard confronted Andrew in the basement, shouting with rage over Andrew’s spending his hard earned money on toys. Unable to listen to his father’s vitriol any longer, Andrew lashed back out angrily, calling his father an idiot.

Before Andrew could react, Richard was striking him and choking him in a rage. Andrew struggled weakly at first in his father’s grasp as the two wrestled, but as his anger grew so did his strength. Finally, he ignored Matt’s rule and unleashed his telekinetic might against his father.

With ease, Andrew manhandled the man that had tormented him his whole life and slammed him first into a wall and then threw him across the room. Richard landed with a sickening crunch, and groaned in pain while Andrew told him with venom that “I COULD CRUSH YOU.”

To his credit, Andrew stormed out of the house and flew into the clouds above rather than finishing his father off.

Steve

He hovered there shaking for an indeterminate amount of time, when Steve suddenly flew up to meet him. Steve looked visibly shaken and nervous as the two boys hovered in the middle of a thunderstorm. Andrew just watched Steve as he tried to console and apologize to him, but Andrew didn’t want to listen.

Instead, he hurled back angry words at Steve and ordered him to leave him alone. Steve refused to leave, as thunder rumbled about them, and continued to plead and argue with his friend. But Steve’s words only proved to feed the already erratic flame of Andrew’s rage, and as the storm final broke, Andrew lashed out blindly at his friend.

Whether or not Andrew called a bolt out of the blue, or simply pushed Steve into the path of an already existing tongue of lightning the result was hauntingly the same. Steve died instantly at the hands of one of his best friends.

Downward Spiral, part 1

Steve’s funeral was a tear-filled affair. Andrew lurked along the edges of the event watching it dispassionately from deep within the shadows. As the funeral came to a close, Matt broke away from the crowd and angrily confronted Andrew.

He had no way of being sure, but Matt intuitively realized that Andrew knew what had happened to Steve. Horrified and in denial, Andrew refused to answer Matt outside of denying any direct responsibility in Steve’s death.

As their argument grew more heated, Andrew turned his back on his cousin and rocketed into the sky, flying away at speeds that Matt couldn’t hope to match.

Andrew waited silently, for Matt and the others to disperse. When they had, he returned to Steve’s grave and privately wept and begged for his friend’s forgiveness. When Steve failed to answer his prayers, Andrew left for home once more.

Downward Spiral, part 2

Life returned to normal for Andrew, which is to say it sucked again. Once again, he was a nobody at school. Everyone had heard about what happened with Monica, and the bullies had yet another reason to tease him.

Andrew spent a lot of time wandering, thinking about his life and wondering what he could do to change it. He continued to practice and use his powers, and began to study about human and animal evolution. He began to draw similarities between himself and the Apex Predators of the animal kingdom, and eventually truly began to believe it.

Andrew Detmer (Dane DeHaan) and the other two Chronicle leads

One day, after being taunted by one of his many tormentors, something in Andrew snapped. Instead of walking away quietly, Andrew stalked his tormentor and after calling to him, tore out several of the bullies teeth with a gesture.

When he returned home that evening, he overheard exactly how desperate his father was to get the money for his mother’s drugs. Before heading out to the drug store himself, Andrew found himself confronted by his cousin who had flown into Andrew’s bedroom through an open window.

I want a new drug

The two boys quickly got into a verbal disagreement, as Matt accused Andrew of using his power to hurt the boy in school that day and breaking their rules. Instead of backing down, Andrew pushed Matt back and asked him what he was going to do even if he did.

Angered by Andrew’s defiance, Matt attempted to strike his younger cousin with a closed fist. To his dismay Andrew held him at bay with little to no visible effort. Shaken, Matt retreated from Andrew’s bedroom and into the night.

Andrew eventually made it to the drug store, and tried to use what was remaining of his savings to purchase the drugs that his mother needed. Unfortunately, he didn’t have enough. Broke and desperate, Andrew decided to steal the money that he needed.

His first target was the group of thugs that frequented the park close to his home. He approached them in disguise (even though they saw right through it), and in a display of fury and raw power, cut them down within seconds. He then moved onto robbing a gas station due to the fact that the thugs didn’t have enough cash on them.

Unfortunately, for both Andrew and the attendant, he botched the robbery. When the attendant pulled a weapon Andrew inadvertently caused it to fire into one of the holding tanks and caused an explosion large enough to render him unconscious and the attendant dead.

Birth of a Villain

Andrew returned to consciousness in an expensive hospital bed while listening to his father berate him once more. Apparently, while he was unconscious he father had been searching for him at the bequest of his mother.

While they were both away from home, she had quietly passed away in her bed, alone and afraid. Andrew’s father obviously blamed him for her loss, and somewhere deep inside, Andrew did as well.

All of this mixed with the pain, shame of the past few days, Steve’s death and the deep burning rage that had festered within him for years finally exploded out of Andrew in a blaze of power. Even as his father’s angry fist dropped towards him, Andrew caught it in an open hand and blew the hospital room apart.

Andrew rose menacingly out of the hospital bed and dragging his still breathing father by a foot, flew slowly out of the charred remains of the hospital room and into the night sky. He didn’t go far though, he simply flew to the roof of the hospital and waited patiently. You see, he could feel Matt coming and he didn’t want him to miss this.

When Matt arrived, Andrew held his father out over the edge of the building and simply let go. He watched with satisfaction as his father fell to his death. His satisfaction quickly turned back to rage though, when Matt rose out of the crowd and caught Richard’s limp form before he could be crushed against the ground.

Matt, part 1

Andrew flew away gracefully, all the while being surrounded by helicopters, bright lights and sirens. With little conscious effort and thoughts of pure malice, Andrew swatted the vehicles out of the sky, smashing buildings and people alike.

All the while, he focused his thoughts on his cousin, who was following down below, acting like one of the lesser species that had created them.

Andrew eventually grew impatient with the chase, and lifted Matt’s car into the sky shaking it violently the entire time and eventually drew Matt out. He watched as Matt placed his girlfriend gingerly on the ground (she had accompanied Matt to the incident) and then approached him in the sky.

While the two hovered in the din above the Space Needle, Andrew listened to Matt beg him to stand down and stop the madness that seemed to have taken hold of him. The entire time, all Andrew could think of was how weak his cousin was.

With a final thought of that he was the Apex Predator, Andrew finally attacked Matt. He struck him with a bus full of civilians and the battle was joined. The two battled maniacally across the city, crashing through buildings and throwing whatever wasn’t bolted to the ground at one another.

Matt, part 2

As the police finally managed to corral the battling youths, Andrew’s injuries and fatigue finally started to weigh upon him. Anger mixed with desperation within him, as with the strength and focus of a berserker warrior, Andrew unleashed his full might against the city that surrounded him.

Men and women alike were tossed about like rag dolls. Cars were flipped and for all intents and purposes disintegrated. Even worse, the buildings that surrounded him rattled and shook, raining glass and debris on the people around them as Andrew shook the city to its core.

If Andrew had even bothered to look behind him, he would have seen his cousin and best friend in the world struggle with the emotion that raced within him. He would have heard him implore him to stop. He would have seen Matt’s face become rigid when he made up his mind.

And he would have seen Matt use his own telekinetic strength to tear a massive iron spear from a nearby statue and hurl it through his back.

Andrew didn’t even get a chance to feel the explosion of pain in his gut as the spear ripped through him. Instead, all went blissfully black as his pain receded in his final moments.

Epilogue

Some time later, Matt found himself standing deep in the mountains of Tibet, at the foot of a monastery with Andrew’s camera. He spoke quickly and quietly to the camera, expressing his love for his cousin and vowing to not only figure out what had done this to them, but to use his own powers to help anyone that needed it.

With that, he pointed the camera at the temple and said, “You made it,” before flying away into the quiet Tibetan sky.


Description

Andrew was a teen-aged caucasian boy, with dirty blonde hair and piercing blue eyes. He has average looks and a slight frame. In essence, Andrew wasn’t the type of kid that stood out in a crowd.

The only thing that was instantly memorable about Andrew’s appearance was the awkwardness he projected (mostly when speaking to girls) and the almost haunted air he held about him.

Andrew dressed like a typical teen under most normal circumstances. In the one case that he decided to use his powers publicly, he took his father’s firefighter gear (including the face-mask) and used it as a disguise to conceal his identity.

Unfortunately for him, it didn’t help him conceal his voice or the battered backpack that he carried around.


Personality

Andrew had all the hallmarks of an individual who could have a psychotic episode. He was a loner, and felt incredibly awkward in nearly every social setting.

He was picked on relentlessly by the local school bullies. His mother was essentially absent from his life due to sickness, and his father had degenerated from a heroic figure into a drunken abuser.

With every new blow to his personality, Andrew retreated and became at first desperate and eventually hostile. Upon coming to the realization that his gifts actually made him more powerful than everyone around him, he developed the attitude that he was an “Apex Predator.”

At that point, like some bullied teens that acquire a weapon, Andrew snapped and became as violent and angry as his abusers. He began to see the normal mortals that surround him as “insects” and ultimately disposable.

But in reality, all Andrew truly wanted was to be accepted, loved and at peace with himself and the world around him. Given another option, it is highly probable that he would not have degenerated into the mass murderer that he became.


Quotes

(To his father while his father attempted to break into his room) “I bought a camera and I’m filming everything from here on out !”

Andrew: “I just want to record all the stuff we can do, you know ?”
Steve: “Yeah but it’s like… all the time. You don’t feel it’s a little weird ? Like it puts a barrier between you and everything else ?”
Andrew: “Uhmmm… I don’t know. Maybe I want a barrier.”

(After forcing an aggressive driver off of the road) “I don’t understand how you guys can be so angry ?!”

(About travelling to Tibet) “I think it would be really cool. Peaceful.”

“It’s different, because you’ve always had friends, and people always wanted to talk and be around you. I’ve never had that. Before this, I barely even talked to Matt and we’re cousins.”

(While pinning his father against a wall after receiving a beating) “I could crush you, you know that. I’LL CRUSH YOU !”

“Please believe me Steve… I don’t know what I did. I lost control, and I’m sorry. This thing has become a part of me and… I miss you Steve.”

“The lion doesn’t feel guilty when it kills the gazelle. You don’t feel guilty when you squash a fly. I just think that means something.”

“I’m an apex predator.”


DC Universe History

Andrew would have made a fascinating foil for the Teen Titans, but ultimately works better in a world where superhuman abilities are not a common as found in the DC universe.

Perhaps the best place for Andrew to show up would be in one of the Earth One scenarios. Of the two, clearly Metropolis is the better location where he could battle the new-found Superman for control of the city.


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Game Stats — DC Heroes RPG Print Friendly

Tell me more about the game stats

Andrew Detmer

Dex: 02 Str: 02 Bod: 04 Motivation: Thrill of Adventure to Nihilist
Int: 03 Wil: 04 Min: 06 Occupation: Student
Inf: 02 Aur: 02 Spi: 06 Resources {or Wealth}: 001
Init: 007 HP: 025

Powers:
Empathy: 05, Flight: 06, Mental Blast: 09, Skin Armor: 05, Telekinesis: 12

Bonuses and Limitations:

  • Empathy: Range Bonus (+1FC), Limited to intense emotions (-1FC), Limited to Matt and Steve (-1FC);
  • Flight: Contingent on Telekinesis (-1FC);
  • Mental Blast: Area of Effect Bonus (+3FC), Contingent on Telekinesis (-1FC);
  • Skin Armor: Contingent on Telekinesis (-1FC), Only effective vs perceived danger (-1FC);

Skills:
None demonstrated.

Advantages
None demonstrated.

Connections:
Matt Garetty (High), Steve Montgomery (High)

Drawbacks:
Age (Young), SIA to Recording his Life, Minor Rage, Miscellaneous (Pushing abilities causes nosebleeds – 0 pts), Serious Rage, Socially Inept

Genre:
Real

By Bryan Gittens

Source of Character: Science Fiction Film – Chronicle (2012), directed by Josh Trank, written by Max Landis, portrayed by Dane DeHaan.

Write-up completed on the 6th of August, 2012.

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