5701 in-depth character profiles from comics, games, movies

Lady Blackhawk of the Birds of Prey (DC Comics)

Lady Blackhawk

(Zinda Blake)


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

Context

The Blackhawk is a group of elite military pilots. It appeared in 1941 as published by Quality Comics. The Blackhawks were part of the characters later purchased by DC Comics and ported over into the DC Universe.

There have been many versions and timelines when it comes to the Blachawks, whether due to reality reboots or alternate reality/non-continuity versions. This means that there also were multiple versions of Lady Blackhawk.

However, here we keep things simple as *only* her appearances in Birds of Prey during the latter half of the 2000s are covered.


Background

  • Real Name: Zinda Blake
  • Other Aliases: Queen Killer Shark
  • Marital Status: Single
  • Known Relatives: None
  • Group Affiliation: Birds of Prey ; formerly the Blackhawks
  • Base Of Operations: Platinum Flats
  • Height: 5’8” Weight: 135 lbs
  • Eyes: Blue Hair: Blonde


Powers and Abilities

One of the best pilots in the world, Zinda is able to fly just about any aircraft.

She’s also a skilled fighter, although she favours more of a brawling combat style. Furthermore she’s a skilled marksman, usually wielding a pair of .45 pistols.


History

Determined to become the first female member of the famed World War II Blackhawk unit, Zinda Blake learned to pilot a range of aircraft, and trained herself in combat and weaponry.

Despite their rules forbidding female members, after Zinda had saved them a number of times, from threats like the Scavenger, they made her an honorary member. She adopted the name Lady Blackhawk.

Lady Blackhawk (Zinda Blake) dual-wielding .45 pistols

She became an obsession of the Nazi pirate Killer Shark, who frequently kidnapped her, using a drug to brainwash her into assuming the identity of Queen Killer Shark, battling her comrades a number of times until freed from the effects of the drug.

Afterwards she retained little memory of what happened while under the drugs’ influence, but recalled them the next time she was exposed to the drug.

Lady Blackhawk (Zinda Blake) in a bar brawl with soldiers and sailors

She continued to fly with the Blackhawks through the war and afterwards, until she was caught in a time-warp caused by the Zero Hour event. Stranded in the future, she was accepted into Guy Gardner’s informal team, which included former Green Lantern Arisia, millionaire adventurer Buck Wargo, and the half-human, half-tiger Tiger-Man.

Let’s do the time warp again

As one of the original Blackhawks, she inherited a stake in the modern Blackhawk Inc.. However, they wouldn’t let her fly anything important without going through a long process of retraining.

Thus, Zinda happily accepted an alternative offer from Oracle (Barbara Gordon), to become the pilot for the Birds of Prey. She developed close friendships with Oracle and fellow Birds Black Canary and Huntress.

It was Zinda who suggested the team name. While mainly the pilot, Zinda began to take more of an active role in missions, especially after Black Canary retired from the group.

Lady Blackhawk (Zinda Blake) recruitment poster

She briefly quit when Spy Smasher II usurped control of the Birds, punching Spy Smasher by way of resignation. But Oracle soon forced Spy Smasher to back off, and Zinda returned to the group.

The shark is a very deadly beast

After a brief encounter with a youthful looking Killer Shark, Zinda tracked him down with Huntress. However, they were overcome and Zinda was again brainwashed into becoming Queen Killer Shark.

Her captor turned out to be the grandson of the original Killer Shark, himself a genius in marine engineering. He had inherited most of his predecessor’s paraphernalia.

His grandfather had not, however, revealed the location of his amassed booty. Therefore, the new Killer Shark drugged Zinda so she could lead him to it. She did so, but managed to break free of his control with Huntress’s help, handing Killer Shark over to the authorities.

Lady Blackhawk (Zinda Blake) fights mobsters


Personality

Loud and brash, Zinda has a big personality, enjoying brawling and partying in equal measure. A generous and open friend, and an implacable enemy, she doesn’t particularly like being confined, or taking orders from those she doesn’t like. While she trusts Oracle, she’s resistant to being ordered about by anyone else.

She adapted quickly to the new time period, her only real problem being the loss of her friends. She maintains a cheerfully outgoing persona, though, dealing with her grief in her own time.

Lady Blackhawk (Zinda Blake) and the Blackhawk crew, sepia photograph


Quotes

“I don’t like to gossip, but that gal’s gone crackers.”

“HAWWWKAA !” (the Blackhawk’s traditional battle cry)

Oracle: “You speak Spanish, by the way ?”
Lady Blackhawk: “I can order beer in 30 languages.”
Oracle: “Nice if you’re thirsty. Anything else ?”
Lady Blackhawk: “What else is there ?”
Oracle: “Best damn pilot in the country and she happens to be a sot. Disgraceful.”
Lady Blackhawk: “Ornery, crankipated boss, gone loco from keyboard fever.”

“Well, butter my butt an’ call me a biscuit !”


Sharing

The links to follow us and/or subscribe to our monthly newsletter are at the bottom of this page.



Game Stats — DC Heroes RPG Print Friendly

Tell me more about the game stats

Lady Blackhawk

Dex: 06 Str: 03 Bod: 04 Motivation: Thrill of Adventure
Int: 05 Wil: 05 Min: 06 Occupation: Pilot
Inf: 06 Aur: 05 Spi: 06 Resources: 010
Init: 019 HP: 050

Skills:
Acrobatics: 04, Martial Artist: 05, Vehicles (Air): 10, Vehicles (Land): 07, Weaponry (Firearms): 06

Advantages:
Expertise (Cooking, Scuba diving), Familiarity (WWII-era history and planes), Language (Pashto), Rich Friends (Oracle)

Connections:
Birds of Prey (High), Blackhawk Inc. (Low), Guy Gardner (High)

Drawbacks:
None demonstrated

Equipment:

  • .45 Pistols (x2) [BODY 04, Projectile weapon: 04, Ammo 08, R#02]
  • She’s also been shown to have heavier weaponry available, in whichever vehicle she’s using at the time. Examples include the SPAS-12 shotgun [BODY 04, Projectile weapons: 06 (Diminishing), Range: 03, Ammo: 08, R#03, Advantage: Scattershot, Limitation: Projectile weapons has No Range – use the Range given next instead, Drawback: Very long reload time] she pulled from the armoury in the boot of her car (itself marked with the Blackhawk design used on her planes).
  • Aerie One – This was the first plane she flew for Oracle. Acquired from Blackhawk Inc., this Cessna Citation X was outfitted with leading edge technology provided by Ted Kord. Able to make itself invisible to standard tracking (and to the human eye), it could also project up to 250 decoy radar images of itself, flying on separate flight paths.
    It could project a Virtual Armor, a force field which could resist Superman’s heat vision for a few seconds, although this was resource-heavy and could not be maintained for long. It could also project feedback which could neutralize the instruments and weapons of other planes, leaving their engines unaffected. The plane’s ID is 630CX.
    [STR 10 BODY 12, Electromagnetic Pulse (Instrumentation and weapons only): 10, Flight: 09, Force Field (Serious Power Burnout): 08, Illusion (False radar images only): 15, Invisibility (visual and radar): 12, Radar Sense: 18, Radio Communications (Scrambled): 20, Hardened Defenses, R#02]

Lady Blackhawk (Zinda Blake)'s Aerie-1 jet with its force field on

  • Aerie Two – This helicopter was for use in more urban areas, but had much the same stealth technology as the Aerie one, as well as missiles set on either side. It was shot down as part of Spy Smasher’s takeover of the Birds.
    [STR 07 BODY 08, Flight: 07, Illusion (False radar images only): 15, Invisibility (visual and radar): 12, Projectile Weapons: 10, Radar Sense: 15, Radio Communications (Scrambled): 15, Hardened Defenses, R#02]
  • She used another small plane later, but it only lasted a few pages before being shot down, and didn’t exhibit any unusual capabilities, so assume she can get access to a regular plane at a moments notice.

Lady Blackhawk (Zinda Blake)'s Aerie-1 corporate jet

By Gareth Lewis

Source of Character: DC Comics (covers up to Birds of Prey #118)

Helper(s): Wikipedia, Darci, Sébastien Andrivet, capita_senyera, DouglasPWz.

Lady Blackhawk (Zinda Blake)'s Aerie-2 helicopter

Subscribe to our MINI-NEWSLETTER !

One bare-bones e-mail per month. Plain text. Short. To the point. Learn more.