Time Trapper

The Time Trapper is a fictional character, a supervillain in stories published by DC Comics. The Time Trapper's main enemies are the Legion of Super-Heroes.

The Time Trapper's main powers are depicted as vast control over time itself. The Time Trapper's lair has been located at the end of time.

Time Trapper
Time Trapper
Interior artwork from Who's Who: The Definitive Directory of the DC Universe vol. 1, 23 (January, 1987 DC Comics)
Art by Keith Giffen
Publication information
PublisherDC Comics
First appearance(as Ty. M. Master) Wonder Woman #101 (October 1958); (as Time Trapper) Adventure Comics #317 (February 1964) (first mentioned) / Adventure Comics #318 (March 1964) (cameo appearance) / Adventure Comics #321 (June 1964) (full appearance)
Created byRobert Kanigher (Time Master) and Edmond Hamilton (Time Trapper)
In-story information
Notable aliasesCosmic Boy, Lori Morning, Superboy-Prime
AbilitiesTime manipulation

Publication history

While the character first appeared as "The Time Trapper" in Adventure Comics #317 (February 1964) in a story written by Edmond Hamilton, a similar character named "The Time Master" had appeared earlier in Wonder Woman #101 (October 1958) in a story written by Robert Kanigher. In Super Friends #17 (February 1979), writer E. Nelson Bridwell wrote a story that hinted that the two characters were one and the same. Although usually depicted in early stories as wearing a hood that hid his entire face in shadow, the Time Trapper wore a mask that revealed the lower half of his face in a rare non-Legion appearance wherein he sought revenge on Superman for helping the Legion defeat him years earlier.[1]

Fictional character biography

The Time Trapper was originally a strange robed warlord from the extremely distant future, well past the time of the Legion of Super-Heroes. In his early appearances, the Time Trapper (also known as Paras) created a strange "Iron Curtain of Time" that prevented the Legion from going into their future. He also commanded a vast number of slaves and had a henchwoman named Glorith, whom he eventually murdered.[2]

The Time Trapper (as The Time Master) appeared in 1958 to challenge Wonder Woman and Colonel Steve Trevor under the alias T.Y.Master by creating a diabolical "fun house". Wonder Woman and Steve Trevor were transported to various disasters throughout time when opening a door before defeating the Time Master by Wonder Woman vibrating through the doors. The villain then admitted defeat and disappeared, possibly returning to the "Iron Curtain of Time".[3]

Later, it was revealed that the Time Trapper was a member of the fascist but well-intentioned race of Controllers.[4] The Time Trapper was defeated by the Legion and it was believed that his menace ended when the villain Darkseid removed almost all of his power during the Great Darkness Saga.

Later retcons claimed that the Time Trapper was not a Controller at all, replacing this with a series of wildly contradictory origins. These various backstories include him being the Legionnaire Cosmic Boy,[5] Lori Morning,[6] Superboy-Prime,[7] the living embodiment of Entropy in the Universe,[8] and a sentient alternate timeline.[9]

Time Trapper is killed by Parallax in Zero Hour: Crisis in Time #1.

One of the more noteworthy stories involving the Time Trapper came after the reality-altering mini-series Crisis on Infinite Earths and the 1986 revamp of Superman's origin, which removed Superboy from Superman's and the Legion's history. Given the problems this posed for Legion continuity, it was later revealed that the Time Trapper created a pocket universe from a slice of time in the distant past, and altered events in this reality so that an Earth resembling the pre-Crisis one was formed, complete with its own Superboy. The Time Trapper then further manipulated the timestream so that whenever the Legion would travel into the past to visit the 20th century (or Superboy visited the Legion's future), the two would be directed into each other's worlds.[10] However, the "pocket universe" lacked a Kryptonian Supergirl, and thus was not a perfect answer to patching Legion continuity. (The "pocket universe" was later revisited and made the point of origin for a non-Kryptonian Supergirl, also known as Matrix).

Four Legionnaires, (Duo Damsel, Brainiac 5, Saturn Girl, and Mon-El) were involved in a conspiracy to destroy the Time Trapper, against the Legion's regulations. They managed to reach his citadel at the end of time and seemingly destroyed him by using the Infinite Man against him. During this attack, Duo Damsel's second body was killed and Mon-El was put into a coma.[11]

Following the five-year gap in Legion history, Brainiac 5 learned that the Trapper's essence had survived in Mon-El's mind. Mon-El then murdered the Trapper in the Pocket Universe, which caused a chain reaction throughout time and resulted in the sorcerer Mordru dominating the universe for a time.[12] Mordru's former sidekick Glorith, through a magical spell, managed to take the Trapper's place in history and it was revealed that the Time Trapper had originally engineered the creation of the Legion in order to halt the inevitable rise of Mordru.[13]

However it is eventually revealed that the Time Trapper had managed to survive and was probing Glorith's mind in an effort to regain his power. Enraged by this violation of her person, Glorith confronts the Time Trapper in the remains of his Pocket Universe and literally consumes him, effectively becoming the Time Trapper.[14]

Zero Hour

The Time Trapper appeared to have been killed by Parallax during the 1994 Zero Hour storyline, but was apparently reconstructed with the universe at the climax of that story. He was also revealed to be Cosmic Boy. Keeping a promise he had made to the pre-Zero Hour version of Cosmic Boy, he did not intervene to ensure the creation of the post-Zero Hour Legion, but after they were formed, he briefly bedeviled them, with memories of all of his previous incarnations intact.[15] The identity of this incarnation of the Time Trapper remains unconfirmed; some evidence suggests that it may be a future version of Lori Morning.[6] In the introduction to the Zero Hour hardcover collection, writer Dan Jurgens said he intended it to be the alternate version of Batgirl who was erased from continuity at the end of the series.[16]

The Time Trapper later states that he made countless attempts to separate Superman from the Legion and erase him from the timeline, but that these attempts never lasted. The Trapper claims to have confused the Legion with "pocket dimensions and alternate history", implying that he was responsible for the creation and existence of the "Batch SW6", "Reboot" and "Threeboot" incarnations of the Legion.[17] He also reveals that he is the one who created the crystal tablet that stated Superman to be of Earth origin.[18]

Final Crisis

The Time Trapper's plan came to fruition in the 2008 miniseries Final Crisis: Legion of 3 Worlds by Geoff Johns and George Pérez. He uses Superboy-Prime, which he views as a corrupted Superman, as a tool to destroy the link between Superman and the Legion.[19] He brings Superman and the Legion founders to the end of time, where he attempts to kill them and is revealed to be an older Superboy-Prime.[7] However, during the battle, Saturn Girl watches as the Trapper's "S" scar on his chest gains a slash across it as it simultaneously happens to Prime in the past. With this evidence, Brainiac 5 theorizes that the Trapper is in fact an alternate, sentient timeline whose identity changes constantly as the true timeline marches on, explaining the multiple identity changes he has gone through in each incarnation. In order to weaken the Trapper, the founders combined their powers, using the cracks in reality at the end of time to bring in many alternate Legionnaires to fight him. The Trapper was knocked out and brought back to the Legion's time. The Trapper tried to convince Superboy-Prime to join forces with him to destroy the Legion. However, Prime refused to believe that the Trapper was his future self and punched him, creating a blinding flash that sent Prime back to Earth Prime and destroyed that incarnation of the Trapper.[20]

Powers and abilities

The Time Trapper has complete control over future time. He is able to freeze it, alter it, and even separate parts of it, thereby creating his own pocket dimensions. He cannot, however, alter events in the present time.

Other versions

Super Friends

In February 1979, Time Trapper appeared to defeat the Super Friends. During the investigation, Wonder Woman suggested that the Time Master and the Time Trapper were the same person. Superman deduced that the Time Trapper wanted to get rid of all superheroes throughout time, particularly the Legion of Super-Heroes. Time Trapper kidnapped and transported the Wonder Twins in the past by trapping Jayna on Krypton and Zan on a water planet near the star-sun Neryla. With the help of Queen Hippolyta, the Super Friends separated into small teams to locate and rescue the Wonder Twins. Returning to the present, the Super Friends defeated The Time Trapper who then disappeared. Superman believed he was imprisoned by the Controllers from his world.[21]

In other media


  • The Time Trapper appears as the main antagonist in the animated film JLA Adventures: Trapped in Time, voiced by Corey Burton. He is freed from his skeletal hourglass prison called the Eternity Glass by Lex Luthor (who had been thawed out in 30th century Earth by Karate Kid and Dawnstar). From there, he is enslaved by Luthor and forced to take him back in time as well as send his fellow members of the Legion of Doom further back in time to change events so that baby Kal-El would never have been raised by Jonathan and Martha Kent. However, a few members of the Justice League were able to follow and the others faced off against Time Trapper who displayed his immense power. Once Dawnstar and Karate Kid made it so that Luthor was freed from the ice in the present instead of the future, Time Trapper erased the alternate Lex from existence, freed himself, and used the Eternity Glass in an attempt to mold the present day in his image. However, thanks to Dawnstar's light energy combating his dark matter composition, the League and the Legionnaires were able to separate the Trapper from the Eternity Glass, and he was forced back into his prison. Dawnstar and Karate Kid took the hourglass back to the future, to ensure he wouldn't harm the present (or their past) again.


  • The Time Trapper appears in the teaser of issue 7 of All-New Batman: The Brave and the Bold (which is based on Batman: The Brave and the Bold). He is seen fighting Batman and the Teen Titans until he is defeated by them.

See also


  1. ^ Superman 385-387 (1970)
  2. ^ Adventure Comics #338 (October 1965)
  3. ^ Wonder Woman (vol. 1) #101 (1958)
  4. ^ DC Limited Collector's Edition #55 (1978)
  5. ^ Legion of Super-Heroes (vol. 4) #61 (Sept. 1994)
  6. ^ a b Legionnaires #64 (September 1998)
  7. ^ a b Final Crisis: Legion of 3 Worlds #4 (May 2009)
  8. ^ Legion of Superheroes (vol. 4) #4 (1990)
  9. ^ Final Crisis: Legion of 3 Worlds #5 (Sept 2009)
  10. ^ Action Comics #591 (August 1987)
  11. ^ Legion of Super-Heroes (vol. 3) #50 (September 1988)
  12. ^ Legion of Super-Heroes (vol. 4) #5 (March 1990)
  13. ^ Legion of Super-Heroes (vol. 4) Annual #1 (1990)
  14. ^ Legion of Super-Heroes (vol. 4) #13 (November, 1990)
  15. ^ Legionnaires #60-61 (May–June 1998) and Legion of Super-Heroes (vol. 4) #104-105 (May–June 1998)
  16. ^ "I’m not saying, but if you suspect the long hair makes it a female, perhaps with red hair, who once wore a black costume with a yellow bat symbol, well… you’d be right." https://crisisonearthprime.com/zero-hour/zero-hour-collections/
  17. ^ Action Comics #864 (June 2008)
  18. ^ Action Comics #858-863 (December 2007 - May 2008)
  19. ^ Final Crisis: Legion of 3 Worlds #1 (October 2008)
  20. ^ Final Crisis: Legion of 3 Worlds #5 (July 2009)
  21. ^ Super Friends #17-18 (1979)
Constance Forslund

Constance Forslund (born June 19, 1950) is an American actress whose performances include a revival of Clare Boothe Luce's The Women on Broadway and the films The Way We Were and The Great Bank Hoax.

In television movies, Forslund portrayed Ginger Grant in The Harlem Globetrotters on Gilligan's Island and Marilyn Monroe in This Year's Blonde, one of a series of three movie specials under the "Moviola" name. She also appeared on such television series as Fantasy Island, Taxi, One Day at a Time, Trapper John, M.D., CHiPs, Magnum, P.I., The Love Boat, Murder, She Wrote, It's A Living and ER.

Controllers (DC Comics)

The Controllers are a fictional extraterrestrial race existing in the DC Universe. They first appear in Adventure Comics #357 (June 1967), and were created by Jim Shooter, Mort Weisinger, and Curt Swan.

Cosmic Boy

Cosmic Boy (Rokk Krinn) is a fictional character, a comic book superhero in the 30th and 31st centuries of the DC Comics Universe. He is a founding member of the Legion of Super-Heroes, and was the original leader in all incarnations of the Legion.

End of an Era (comics)

"End of an Era" is an American comic book story arc that was published by DC Comics, and presented in Legion of Super-Heroes vol. 4, #60-61, Legionnaires #17-18, and Valor #22-23 (August–September 1994). It was written by Mark Waid, Tom McCraw and Kurt Busiek, with pencils by Stuart Immonen, Ron Boyd, Chris Gardner and Colleen Doran. A tie-in to the Zero Hour: Crisis in Time miniseries, it is the final story arc in the Legion of Super-Heroes' original timeline, and marks the end of 36 years of unbroken Legion continuity.


Glorith of Baaldur is a fictional character appearing in stories published by DC Comics. Her primary foe is the 30th century team known as the Legion of Super-Heroes, and she was a major presence in Volume 4 of the Legion of Super-Heroes title -- during the "Five Years Later" era of Legion continuity. Originally a minor villain who made one appearance in the 1960s, Glorith became a central figure in DC's attempts to repair the continuity problems created when it removed the original Superboy from continuity following the Crisis on Infinite Earths miniseries.

Lar Gand

Lar Gand, known mainly as Mon-El (and alternatively as Valor and M'Onel), is a fictional character appearing in American comic books published by DC Comics, commonly in association with the Legion of Super-Heroes, Superboy, and Superman. The character has been reinterpreted over the years, but in all versions, he serves as a hero with abilities similar to those of Superman, sometimes serving as a substitute for him.

The first live-action version of the character was introduced in Season 2 of Supergirl, played by Chris Wood. He was part of the main cast until he left at the end of the third season.

Legion of Super-Heroes (1958 team)

The 1958 version of the Legion of Super-Heroes (also called the original or Preboot Legion) is a fictional superhero team in the 31st century of the DC Comics Universe. The team is the first incarnation of the Legion of Super-Heroes, and was followed by the 1994 and 2004 rebooted versions. It first appeared in Adventure Comics #247 (April 1958) and was created by Otto Binder and Al Plastino.

Legionnaires 3

Legionnaires 3 is a four-issue comic book limited series published by DC Comics in 1986, the second limited series to feature the Legion of Super-Heroes. It was written by Keith Giffen and Mindy Newell, pencilled by Ernie Colón, and inked by Karl Kesel. The series pits the Legion's three founders against one of their deadliest enemies, the Time Trapper.

List of Legion of Super-Heroes enemies

This is a list of fictional characters from DC Comics who are enemies of the Legion of Super-Heroes.

Lori Morning

Lori Morning is a fictional character in DC Comics' Legion of Super-Heroes.


Mordru (also known as Mordru the Merciless) is a fictional supervillain appearing in books published by DC Comics. Created by writer Jim Shooter and artist Curt Swan, Mordru first appeared in Adventure Comics #369 (June 1968).

Mordru is the most prominent Lord of Chaos and is fated to survive even after the end of the universe, although he is usually shown as a powerful wizard. While he is sometimes depicted as a present-day adversary of the Justice Society of America and Amethyst, Princess of Gemworld, Mordru's primary foes are the Legion of Super-Heroes in the future world of the 30th and 31st centuries. He is arguably the team's most powerful enemy.

Neon (comics)

Neon (Celeste McCauley, a.k.a. Celeste Rockfish) is a fictional character in the 30th and 31st centuries of the DC Comics Universe, and a member of the Legion of Super-Heroes. She first appeared after the "Five Year Gap" in Legion of Super-Heroes (vol. 4) #6, created by then-inker and co-writer Al Gordon.Celeste is the niece of long-time Legion rival Leland McCauley. She studied at the Science Police Academy and eventually became a private detective, opening her own agency called the Rockfish Detective Agency. Dawnstar became her partner under the alias of "Bounty."

Sun Boy hired Celeste to investigate the hiring of Roxxas by Earthgov. This led her to the Legion of Super-Heroes, which was in the process of reforming. Later she confronted Roxxas directly and was severely injured. Her Green Lantern powers then emerged, healing her. Afterwards the Legion invited her to join the team and she accepted.

She was transformed into a Darkstar during Zero Hour before disappearing from existence.

Celeste has made one appearance since then, in Final Crisis: Legion of 3 Worlds, where she appeared to help the Legion fight the Time Trapper.

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Shanghalla is a fictional planetoid in the 30th century DC Comics Universe. Its name appears to be a portmanteau of Shangri-La and Valhalla.

Shanghalla is a memorial planetoid for the greatest heroes of the Galaxy. The deceased former members of the Legion of Super-Heroes are buried there alongside other great heroes of the galaxy. The Legion has had a relatively high death toll, especially compared to other comics at the time.

Among those entombed there are:

Ferro Lad - died saving the galaxy from the Sun-Eater. His funeral was the first appearance of Shanghalla.

Invisible Kid - crushed to death in the grip of Validus.

Chemical King - received a lethal dose of radiation preventing a massive nuclear device from starting another world war.

Karate Kid - died fighting Nemesis Kid.

Superboy - (the pocket universe pre-Zero Hour Legion Superboy) - died stopping the Time Trapper from destroying Smallville.

Magnetic Kid - sacrificed himself to open the Archmage's seal on Zerox.

Blok - murdered by Roxxas.

Laurel Gand - died from taking the brunt of a massive Khundish bomb, saving Weber's World.

Triplicate Girl - one of her three bodies was killed by Computo in Adventure Comics #340 (in the pre-Crisis timeline).Additionally, Lightning Lad was interred there for a time after being apparently killed by Zaryan the Conqueror, but he was later revived by the sacrifice of Proty (or replaced by Proty, according to v4 Legion).

Post-Zero Hour it included:

Kid Quantum - died when his stasis belt malfunctioned.

Colossal Boy - died fighting Dr. Regulus.Not only Legionnaires are enshrined on Shanghalla; other great heroes from the galaxy have been interred there as well. Most of these were one-offs which were just names put in by the writer or artist on a tomb in the background of a panel, but on occasion they were mentioned elsewhere. None of these were ever seen in action.

Leeta-87 - tragic hero, defeated countless villains but died when she slipped on a "banyo-fruit peel". This "joke" was revived in the v4 Legion Annual #1 when Ultra Boy discovered his acting ability performing a stage play tragedy based on her life.

Braino of Mrynah - All we know is what his tomb tells us, that he was the "noblest being of all time." In the v4 Legion, Matter-Eater Lad had Polar Boy don a costume of Braino (basically just a giant fake head, similar in appearance to the Coneheads) in an attempt to plead insanity during a court case. Though this attempt failed, it actually did play a role in getting the charges against him dismissed.

Hate Face - the face of a devil, the soul of an angel.

Mog Yagor of Vasmeer - killed by a "space beast".

Nimbok of Vaalor - betrayed and murdered by a sorcerer pretending to be his friend.

Beast Boy of the Heroes of Lallor - not to be confused with Beast Boy of the 21st century DC Universe.The name "Shanghalla" became part of the 30th century lexicon, for example, when facing down Legionnaire Impulse (Kent Shakespeare), The Persuader says, "Give my regards to Shanghalla" as a way of implying he was going to kill him.

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Team Titans was a comic book published by DC Comics that spun out of DC's New Titans series. It began in September 1992 and ended in September 1994. The Team Titans were first introduced as a shadowy group stalking the Titans. Their backstory was revealed in New Titans Annual #7 by writer Marv Wolfman, and were popular enough to merit their own series, which Wolfman also wrote. Phil Jimenez and Jeff Jensen took over writing duties with issue #13, and co-wrote the book until its cancellation.

The Exaggerated Death of Ultra Boy

"The Exaggerated Death of Ultra Boy" is a story arc that was published by DC Comics, and presented in Legion of Super-Heroes vol. 2, #273–275 and #277–282 (March–December 1981). It was written by Gerry Conway, Roy Thomas and Paul Levitz, with pencils by Jimmy Janes and Steve Ditko. It depicts the long odyssey of Ultra Boy, who is incorrectly presumed to be slain in battle.

By the story arc's conclusion, retired member Superboy would return to the ranks of the Legion of Super-Heroes, and the questions surrounding Reflecto—first mentioned in "The Adult Legion" story as a future member destined to die—were finally resolved.

The Greatest Hero of Them All

"The Greatest Hero of Them All" is a story arc that was published by DC Comics, and presented in Superman vol. 2, #8, Action Comics #591, and Legion of Super-Heroes vol. 3, #37–38 from August through September 1987. It was written by Paul Levitz and John Byrne, and pencilled by Byrne, Greg LaRocque and Mike DeCarlo. The story arc was DC’s first attempt to correct the inconsistencies in Legion history created when the original Superboy was removed from mainstream DC continuity in the Man of Steel limited series.

In the aftermath of the Zero Hour and Infinite Crisis miniseries, this story is no longer canonical.

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