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Supersonic (Astro City comics) rescues an US space capsule during the Silver Age

Supersonic

(Dale Enright)


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

Background

  • Real Name: Dale Enright
  • Other Aliases: ’Sonic
  • Marital Status: Widower
  • Known Relatives: Caroleen (wife, deceaed)
  • Group Affiliation: None
  • Base Of Operations: Unnamed suburb outside of Astro City, formerly Astro City and Phoenix, Arizona
  • Height: 6’0″ Weight: 200 lbs
  • Eyes: Blue Hair: White


Powers and Abilities

Supersonic at the height of his career possessed numerous superhuman abilities. His abilities are physical – speed, strength and durability, as well as mental – genious intellect and the ability to hear parts of the electromagnetic spectrum. His abilities are quite diminished in his elder years.

He was capable of flying at supersonic velocities and his top speed seems to have allowed for space travel. Enormously fast, he was also able to use his speed to generate a super-cyclone. His most powerful ability seems to have been a vast superhuman strength, allowing him to strenously move planetoids, which likely makes him one of the most powerful heroes in the world.

His durability allows him to withstand incredible physical punishment (he’s well above being bulletproof; he also might be more resistant towards fire). He has, at least once, suffered massive blood loss and extensive organ damage, after which he was declared dead, only to recover on the autopsy table.

An aged Supersonic (Dale Enright) in flight

A genius, Supersonic was an incredibly creative tactician and a superior engineer. He would come up with far fetched and amazing plans on the spur which would actually work. During one such occasion he managed to travel back in time to defeat the Kirlian Man (by means unknown).

For unknown reasons he can hear radiowaves (radio and CB transmissions) and regularly listens in while flying through the air. In later years, he has developed his gardening skills as a hobby, and is quite adept at growing begonias and roses.

See the game stats section for a discussion of Supersonic’s abilities at his height.


History

Dale Enright was an engineer working for Hillman Holdaway Aircraft in Phoenix, Arizona when a wind tunnel accident involving experimental turbines imbued him with superpowers. Calling himself Supersonic and adopting a jet motif, he became a crimefighter in 1958 who enjoyed a long and storied career.

He fought a wide range of super-powered criminals, including the Red Dahlia, Lady Lethal, the Kirlian Man, and Mr. Teleport; and confronted the Radium Ants, the Ogliarchons, and other threats. Rather than simply rely on his superpowers, Supersonic used his analytical mind and engineering knowledge to outwit nearly all of his opponents.

He faced enemies all over the globe, often defended Phoenix and Astro City, ventured into space, and even traveled through time on at least one occasion.

While living in Arizona, Enright formed friendships with a young woman named Caroleen and local police lieutenant Ed Robbins. Enright hid his dual identity as Supersonic from his friends, even after his relationship with Caroleen became romantic. The observant Robbins did eventually discover Enright’s secret, but kept this information to himself for decades.

In 1966, Lady Lethal seemingly killed Supersonic, who suffered massive blood loss and extensive organ damage. Although clinically dead, Enright recovered while on the autopsy table.

Supersonic vs. the Kirlian Man

Over the years, Enright’s mental agility began to wane, either due to age, some sort of power change, or perhaps simply “one too many knocks to the head.” The plans and wild ideas he employed to defeat his foes no longer came to him so easily.

Realizing that his physical and mental prowess had diminished, Enright retired from superheroics in 1982. Caroleen and Dale settled down in Phoenix, where they lived together until Caroleen died from a terminal illness.

After Caroleen’s death, Dale relocated to Astro City, hoping that in a city with so many superheroes, he would never be required to put on his costume again. However, he was coaxed out of retirement in 2004 by Ed Robbins to combat one of Ominuss’ rampaging robots in the Hartley neighborhood of Astro City, at a time when all of the city’s other superheroes happened to be unavailable.

Supersonic managed to defeat the robot through brute force and sheer will, but returned to retirement immediately afterward, having regained a lost old friend.


Description

Supersonic was a slenderly built, yet athletic, male that wore a silver suit that presumably reduced friction and provided him with some protection against attacks. He was often seen with a smile on his face, hinting at a love for hard adventures. His name was derived from the power of jets, which were impressive in his earlier days.

In his elderly, retired days, he is seen bearded, relaxed and wearing casual clothing.


Personality

Everything used to be a game in the old days. Challenging, exciting and worth winning in style. He was never at a loss for a plan, no matter how convoluted. He attempted not to repeat his feats and tried to top his own game. And it always worked perfectly, because he had the energy, the brains and the ingenuity to do it.

He would play with his enemies and use their own abilities to defeat them. He would live the life of a movie star and a superhero. He would try any weird sci-fi idea in his fight against evil men, and he would succeed.

For unknown reasons, however, one day he couldn’t do it anymore. His mind was what made him an adventurous hero and retaining only the physical abilities he saw little choice but to retire. His wife didn’t mind at all, but he sure did.

The simple joy of being with her eventually made up for his most of his wish to be a superhero, but it got tougher once she died. He had to leave the city, and accept that with all the other heroes in Astro City they wouldn’t need him and he should retire in peace.

Now, he will very reluctantly step in only if called for and nobody else is there to answer the call. He will save the day out of necessity and blame himself for everything that could have been done better – still, if nobody dies it was a success regardless of material costs. Afterwards he will return to a well-earned retirement until needed again.

He now thinks of himself as a fossil, and is content to live in anonymity, even if he actually still possesses all the qualities of a great superhero. At the same time he is also at peace with himself and how he has lived his life. If pushed into battle, he can be stubborn and determined enough so that the hero from the glory days will temporarily resurface.

Now his fondest wish is to live a peaceful life and enjoy gardening – there can be no doubt that he has earned it.

Apparently too free a spirit to enjoy being part of a superhero organization, he has mostly worked alone, or with temporary allies. Of everybody he has met over the years, he seems to retain contact only with retired police captain Ed Robbins nowadays.

Still, if the veteran heroes knew his secret identity, the legendary Supersonic would likely be welcome into their network.


Quotes

“Had to start handing some out. Nothing fancy — even if I’d been a kid still, my head was ringing too much for that. Just wade into it — through it — just do damage. Just do damage. [bram]— keep pounding [krom][skamm]— just keep pounding — until something gives. Until I wasn’t slamming into armor any more, but through it — through wiring, self-repairing circuitry — right to its heart. [ktssshh] It gave a faint, ladylike cough — a long, low mechanical whine — and that was it. I could rest, catch my breath — and hope the hammering in my chest slowed down by christmastime. There was a day I’d have made it tie itself into a pretzel, say thank you, and spit out all its master’s plans.”


DC Universe History

Supersonic is a human Red Tornado analogue with inspiration from Marvel’s Whirlwind characters as well as Torpedo (considering the similarities between their costumes). His whole personality and powers are actually a perfect fit with the lyrics of Bonzo Dog Doodah Band’s Urban Spaceman.

Supersonic well follows the tradition of many powerful Golden Age superheroes who were blessed with many vaguely-defined abilities that seemed to surface as the story required it.


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Game Stats — DC Heroes RPG Print Friendly

Tell me more about the game stats

Supersonic

Dex: 06 Str: 15 Bod: 12 Motivation: Unwanted Power
Int: 06 Wil: 06 Min: 05 Occupation: Retired superhero, Ex-engineer
Inf: 06 Aur: 06 Spi: 07 Resources {or Wealth}: 004
Init: 020 HP: 045

Powers:
Flight: 15, Invulnerability: 18, Sealed Systems: 15, Superhearing: 10

Notes:
Supersonic might also have Time Travel, Regeneration and Repulsion abilities, but these would likely be Marginal powers. A flat out Omni-Power is also possible.

Bonuses and Limitations:
Invulnerability has a delayed roll (GM decision)

Skills:
Gadgetry: 06, Martial Artist: 04, Scientist: 08

Advantages:
Expertise (Gardening), Lightning Reflexes

Connections:
Police Captain Ed Robbins, rtd. (High)

Drawbacks:
Age (old), Secret Identity

Equipment:
Supersonic costume [BODY 06, Flame Immunity: 02]


The golden age hero

Supersonic, during his heyday, used to be a legend. He regularly defeated his opponents using extraordinary science and inventive, creative uses of his powers. He regularly employed Power Tricks. A robot would be defeated by draining it by rigging a giant induction coil or by whisking it into the stratosphere with a super-cyclone. An impenetrable force field would be defeated by time travel so that he would already be on the other side when it was first erected.

During this time his Motivation was Thrill of Adventure. The legend has it that Supersonic is as powerful as a jumbo jet and as swift as a military fighter plane. In fact, he was much more powerful than that.
While Supersonic’s physical and mental abilities have diminished somewhat over time, his current strength, speed, and other power levels are still formidable.

His greatest feat ever was putting Pluto back into its orbit ; this requires a STR score of at least 60 APs. The golden age Supersonic thus seems to have possessed the Increased Reserves Shtick (see the New Rules File – Schticks), making him one of the mightiest superheroes ever. The Golden Age Supersonic had the following stats (Mental stats, Flight and Superhearing might have been even higher than this):

Supersonic (Golden Age)

Dex: 10 Str: 20 Bod: 14 Motivation: Thrill of Adventure
Int: 08 Wil: 08 Min: 07 Occupation: Superhero, Engineer
Inf: 06 Aur: 06 Spi: 06 Resources {or Wealth}: 006
Init: 034 HP: 080

Powers:
Air Control: 15, Flight: 30, Invulnerability: 18, Sealed Systems: 15, Superhearing: 20, Superspeed: 06

Notes:
Supersonic might also have Time Travel, Regeneration and Repulsion abilities, but these would likely be Marginal powers. A flat out Omni-Power at quite high AP levels is also possible. Flight might have been as high as a full 45 APs.

Bonuses and Limitations:

  • Air Control may only be used in Conjunction with Flight (-1)
  • Invulnerability has a delayed roll (GM decision)
  • The top three APs of All his Skills are Powered Skills (-1)

Skills:
Gadgetry: 09, Martial Artist: 07, Scientist: 11

Advantages:
Area Knowledge (Astro City & Phoenix), Genius, Lightning Reflexes, Schtick (Increased Reserves)

Connections:
Police Captain Ed Robbins (High), likely several superheroes and organizations (Low)

Drawbacks:
Secret Identity

Equipment:
Supersonic costume [BODY 06, Flame Immunity: 02]

By Dr. Peter S Piispanen

Source of Character: Astro City comics

Helper(s): herocopia.com, Darci, Roy Cowan, Niles Calder, Adam Fuqua

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