Golden City (comics)

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Golden City is a fictional city that appears in comic books published by Dark Horse Comics, and is part of the Comics Greatest World imprint. It was created by Team CGW. Golden City first appeared in Comics' Greatest World: Golden City Week 1, in 1993. It is the home and base of operations for Catalyst: Agents of Change.

Location[edit]

A small West Coast town turned burgeoning superhero Utopia; transformed by a young superwoman's extraordinary vision. No crime, no poverty, no pollution. An exclusive community; progressive, clean, and efficiently run. Golden City is the best of humanity personified; home to the gods. But there is trouble in this paradise: dreamers, the homeless, the hopeless, and the dying all see Golden City as their personal panacea. Roads are backed up for miles in all directions with those who want to move to Golden City.[1]

Golden City is located in northwestern California. In the Comics' Greatest World Sourcebook, it is said to be on West Coast of the United States. The Titan Special confirmed this and showed it to be near the Oregon border.

History[edit]

This character history covers the entire published history of the Dark Horse Comics and Comics' Greatest World environ Golden City.

Grace[edit]

Golden City was originally just another small American town on the California coast, but that was before the woman called Grace arrived. Becoming the town's mayor and "founding mother," Grace turned Golden City into a "megalopolis" and "a contemporary utopia" [2].

At one point it is said Grace was one of the first "magick people," rising out of "their midst to lead them" [3]. However, this is stated in a fairy tale being told by a woman to her son. On a side note, if the information in the fairy tale can be taken at face value, Titan was not the first hero to join Grace in Golden City.

Titan and Golden Boy[edit]

Frank Wells, a teenage runaway and metahuman, finds his way to Golden City and is trained by Grace to become Titan. He was eventually given a boy sidekick named Elmore Meyer AKA Golden Boy.

Golden Boy was a public relations tool and having no apparent powers, he was more of a liability than an aid to Titan. On Golden Boy's first solo mission he was captured and tortured, resulting in the loss of an eye. Grace then retired the boy, having his mind erased by her aide Madison.

Over the next few years, Titan proved himself, but as he saw it "in the end, Grace betrayed me... betrayed Titan!" [4]. The betrayal came with Grace's announcement to the world of a hero for the new age of Golden City, Rebel.

Catalyst[edit]

Warmaker, a former United States soldier turned supervillain, is sent by the government to be imprisoned in The Vault, a super-prison located in Golden City. He escapes (or is allowed to escape by Grace) and begins a rampage.

He faces the heroes of Golden City, including newcomers Mecha and Ruby, causing massive amounts of destruction to the city, until Grace arrives to face him. She easily defeats Warmaker, but Titan attacks him for no reason. Warmaker strikes Titan knocking him into Rhapsody, the local healer, who falls into a crater and is killed.

Grace uses Warmaker's escape and the death of Rhapsody as a rallying point and announces Golden City’s secession from the United States.

War of Secession[edit]

After Grace refuses to kill Vortex, the US Army attacks. The heroes of Golden City, now officially teamed together as Catalyst, battle both ground troops and aircraft while simultaneously protecting the city and its citizens from debris and fallout from the radioactive weapons being used by the army.

An armored super-soldier called Grenade is sent in by the army. He battles and is defeated by Titan, Warmaker, and Ruby, before self destructing releasing radiation into the wheat field battleground. Negative media coverage forces the government to reach a settlement with Grace.

Will To Power[edit]

Titan leaves the team to work for the government. This begins a downward spiral for him and he becomes progressively more and more demented. Grace takes the command of the situation placing Titan in the Vault. He escapes and confronts the Catalyst team.

Realizing they are outgunned, Grace sends Titan to face down the man from the Vortex. Then, she teleports to Cinnabar Flats to warn Vortex of Titan’s impending arrival. Vortex kills Titan as vengeance for the death of Lt. Anderson, his friend. Taking Anderson’s body, he reenters the vortex, leaving Grace to safeguard his base.

Law[edit]

Main article: Law (comics)

Having faked the death of Grace, the villain Law manipulates his way into power as Golden City's new ruler. He slowly weeds out Grace loyalists, killing Madison and driving Mecha and Warmaker out of Golden City.

Law then has a large gate built at the entrance to Golden City, this Judgment Gate is powered by "the essence of the Maelstrom" and will mutate, enhance or kill all that pass through it [5]. Less than 10% of those who pass through the gate are enhanced.

He then has the President of the United States kidnapped and imprisoned in The Vault, as well as annexed the state of California as a refuge for all those enhanced by the Maelstrom.

Before the full extent of Law's plans is revealed he is killed by a Predator, commonly known as one of the aliens from the Predator movies. Grace and her allies then begin the task of "putting Golden City back together" [6].

Notable Citizens[edit]

City Officials[edit]

  • Grace: The mayor and later monarch of Golden City. She is the founder and leader of Catalyst and a formidable hero in her own right.
  • Madison: Grace's second in command and the apparent leader of the council. Madison is a telepath and has the ability to control other people's minds. He is killed by the madman Law in his takeover of Golden City.
  • The Council: The ruling body of Golden City in the weeks after the disappearance of Grace. They are killed by agents of Law when they refuse to make him the dictator of Golden City.
  • Law: Grace's Replacement as monarch of Golden City. He is a villain who uses treachery and murder to rise to power. He is killed by a Predator.
  • Phillip: Law's right hand man.

Members of Catalyst[edit]

  • Titan: One of Golden City's first heroes, an egomaniac. After leaving Golden City he becomes more and more a loose cannon, eventually becoming a villain.
  • Mecha (Art Thomason): a non-enhanced human and former United States soldier bonded with the battle armour of Vortex.
  • Ruby (Real name unknown): A young woman with the ability to disintegrate anything she touches.
  • Rebel (Matt and Mark Morrissette): Identical twins who share an energy absorbing power. Matt is more controlled, where Mark is a loose cannon.
  • Warmaker (Elvis Westbury): US soldier turned criminal turned hero.

He has a nano-technology based battle suit which generates weapons for him.

Villains[edit]

  • Golden Boy: Titan's former side-kick.

Became a villain after a botched mindwipe from Madison. He is killed by the NSC.

  • Sabrinna: A chronomorph. She aids Law in discrediting Warmaker and later replaces US President Bill Clinton.
  • Redline: A speedster, works for Law.
  • Pouch: Has the ability to store energy. Transports Maelstrom energy from Nevada to Golden City to power the Judgment Gate, but the process kills him.

Civilians[edit]

  • Rhapsody: An enigmatic woman with the ability to heal with the slightest touch.

She was killed during the battle with Warmaker.

News Outlets[edit]

  • KCGT
  • Golden City Guardian

The Citadel[edit]

Headquarters of Grace and Catalyst. The Citadel appears to be a large tower set on top of a hill in the center of Golden City. It actually continues down into the hill, going down at least to the hill's base. There are many labs and living quarters, as well as The Vault, a metahuman prison, located within the bowels of the Citadel.

The Vault[edit]

Super-prison located under The Citadel. In later appearances it is called Citadel Prison.

Known Inmates[edit]

Character Real Name First appearance Crime Status Notes
Prisoners of The Vault
Warmaker Elvis Westbury CGW: Golden City Week 1 Unspecified Reformed Super-Soldier, First ever Escapee
Titan Frank Wells CGW: Golden City Week 3 Became Unstable Deceased
Flood Catalyst: Agents of Change 6 Unspecified Probably Deceased Creates/Controls Water
Corona Amy Catalyst: Agents of Change 6 Unspecified Probably Deceased Light based powers; In love with Madison
Gazer Titan Special Psychopathic killer Probably Deceased Ended Golden Boy's career
"Titan Clone" Catalyst: Agents of Change 6 Uncontrollable Probably Deceased Catalyst Recruit
"Armor Guy" Catalyst: Agents of Change 6 Unspecified Probably Deceased Claims to be radioactive under armor
"The Glitch" Catalyst: Agents of Change 7 Unspecified At Large Ability to turn invisible
Psycho Agents of Law 2 (mentioned only) Unspecified Probably Deceased Maybe one of the unnamed villains above
Ignition II Will To Power 4 Incarcerated Fire control, Not executed by Law.
President "Bill" William Clinton Out of the Vortex #? Not a criminal Unknown kidnapped and imprisoned by Law.

During his control of Golden City, Law had all the prisoners in The Vault executed except for three. Of these three, only Ignition is identified.

The Judgment Gate[edit]

A mechanical device created by scientists working for Law, it is powered by energies from The Maelstrom and has one of three effects on all who pass through it: "enhancement, mutation, or death as the Maelstrom energy decides" [7]. It is the gateway from the outside world into Golden City open for all who deem themselves worthy to pass through. Only 7.6% of those who pass through the gate gain abilities and of those, most are "insignificant abilities." The rest are killed or mutated, with the mutates executed by Law's troops, "and still they come." [8]

Gate Crossers[edit]

Character Powers/Mutations Status Notes
Agents of Law #3
Man in Wheelchair Pyrotechnics Terminated
Agents of Law #4
Unnamed Man Giant w/ "blisters" Alive
Elderly Vagrant Woman Creature Terminated Unable to breathe air
Elderly gentleman Psionic Powers Alive
Child Large unbreakable gem No longer living organism Spontaneously Combusted
Middle-aged Man Gryphon-like Creature Terminated
Agents of Law #5
Billy's Mom Celestial Beauty, Flight Alive
Billy Brown creature with claws Terminated
Woman Can Sterilize with a touch Alive Never shown mentioned only

Tent City[edit]

A refuge camp surrounding Golden City. It is the base of operations for Law's army, Division 13, and Grace's freedom fighters.

Bibliography[edit]

  • Comics' Greatest World: Golden City Week 1-4
  • Out of the Vortex 3-5
  • Catalyst: Agents of Change 1-7
  • Will to Power 7-9
  • Agents of Law 1-6

References[edit]

  • [1]^ Dennett, John, ed. Comics' Greatest World: Sourcebook. March 1993. Dark Horse Comics and Advance Comics.
  • [2]^ Eury, Michael. "Letter of the Law" from Agents of Law 1. March 1995. Dark Horse Comics.
  • [3]^ Giffen, Keith and Lovern Kindzierski. Agents of Law 3. May 1995. Dark Horse Comics.
  • [4]^ Richardson, Mike. "Prologue Sequence" to Will To Power 11. August 1994. Dark Horse Comics.
  • [5]^ Giffen, Keith and Lovern Kindzierski. Agents of Law 4. June 1995. Dark Horse Comics.
  • [6]^ Kindzierski, Lovern. Agents of Law 6. September 1995. Dark Horse Comics.
  • [7]^ Giffen, Keith and Lovern Kindzierski. Agents of Law 5. July 1995. Dark Horse Comics.