Volcana (DC Comics)
Volcana as depicted in Superman: The Animated Series.
|First appearance||Superman: The Animated Series'|
|Alter ego||Claire Selton|
|Supporting character of||Superman|
Fictional character biography
DC Animated Universe
The supervillainess known as Volcana was originally named Claire Selton. As a teenager, Claire showed an aptitude for pyrokinesis — the ability to start fires with one's mind. Her parents sent her to Metropolis' Center for Paranormal Studies so that she could learn to control and develop her power, but she was soon spirited away by government agents who had big plans for her. According to the director of the Center, the agents "stripped away her past, code-named her Volcana, and tried their hardest to turn her into a living weapon."
Volcana wouldn't go along with the plan. She escaped from the agents, became a hunted fugitive and survived the only way she could: by stealing. Following the fire activity on a ship, Volcana contacts her fence Donnie to find a way to get her out of town and to meet at the "usual place." After the call with Volcana, Donnie was approached by three men in suits who ask him about where the "usual place" is. Superman later had a run in with Volcana where they had a brief fight before Volcana escaped. When Volcana arrived at the "usual place" to meet with Donnie only to run into Kurt (one of the three men in suits) who mentioned that he was the one who originally kidnapped her. Before Volcana can retaliate, she is hit by a powerful flame retardant by the other agents and captured. Superman later arrived at the same spot and managed to interrogate one of the men that worked for Kurt. Volcana ended up held in a gas tank in an underground facility where Kurt states that he will sell Volcana to another government where they will dissect her and discover the source of her abilities. When Superman arrives, he points out that Kurt is doing this for his own reasons as his "Project Firestorm" was shut down. During Superman's fight with Kurt's men, the gas tank that Volcana was in was damaged enough for her to break out. Volcana managed to wreak havoc on the facility to take revenge on Kurt with her attacks igniting several hydrogen tanks. The explosion managed to stun her while Superman evacuated the endangered combatants. Superman placed her on a deserted island where Superman delivered her food in exchange that she stayed on the island and didn't harm anyone.
She later made a cameo appearance in the episode "Unity", having a brief fight with Supergirl. It is not explained why she left the island or why she returned to villainy despite having been on good terms with Superman.
Justice League and Justice League Unlimited
Volcana made appearances in the episodes "Only a Dream" and "Hereafter" of Justice League, voiced again by Peri Gilpin. In the episode Only a Dream Volcana is incarcerated at a Metropolis jail and takes advantage of a prison riot to escape with fellow villain Firefly. She shows a willingness to kill using her powers in this episode, which brings the character to a more sinister level than before.
It was established that the government project that created her was part of a long-running collaboration between the U.S. military and major corporations to secretly experiment on metahumans and alien technology. An early version of Project Cadmus existed in the wake of Superman's attempted invasion of Earth while under Darkseid's control, producing the metahuman teenagers of the Royal Flush Gang and the creature Doomsday that fought the Justice Lords. The Justice Lords' attack gave Cadmus renewed focus under Amanda Waller, as the government realized it had no way to counter an attack by the Justice League should they go rogue, and led to the creation of Galatea and the Ultimen.
She has also appeared as a member of Gorilla Grodd's Secret Society and was seen battling the invading forces of Darkseid in the series finale. In this episode she is shown to fly under her own power, which is probably how she left her island to rejoin society. Volcana witnesses Darkseid's return and was saved by Star Sapphire and Sinestro. She is one of the survivors alive at the end of the battle and was last seen taking advantage of the "five minute head start" the Justice League gives her after fighting with Darkseid ceased.
Volcana has only made two single appearances in the Superman Adventures comics' based on her original appearances on the DC Animated Universe, in issues 20 and 41 respectively.
In other media
In 2007, Volcana received her very own action figure as part of Mattel's Justice League Unlimited action figure line. The figure was released as part of a three-figure pack with Hawk and Green Arrow and is about 10 cm tall. However, due to poor distribution of many of the 2007 assortments of JLU action figures, Volcana quickly became one of the rarest and most sought after pieces in the Justice League line.
- "Fearful Symmetry". Justice League Unlimited.
- "Legacy". Superman: The Animated Series.
- "Wild Cards". Justice League.
- "A Better World". Justice League.