Waverider (comics)

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The Matthew Ryder version of the character
Publication information
Publisher DC Comics
First appearance Armageddon 2001 #1
(May 1991)
Created by Archie Goodwin (writer)
Dan Jurgens (artist)
In-story information
Alter ego Matthew Ryder
Team affiliations Linear Men
Abilities Ability to time travel at any time
Can access a person's aura and see their future
Quantum energy blasts
Lightspeed flight

Waverider is a fictional superhero in the DC Comics universe, a time traveler who was merged with the time stream, created by Archie Goodwin and Dan Jurgens. The first version of the character, Matthew Ryder, first appeared in Armageddon 2001 #1 (May 1991).[1]

A second version of the character first appeared in Convergence: Booster Gold #2 (July 2015) as a reborn version of the pre-Flashpoint Booster Gold. After his transformation, he is instrumental to saving the multiverse in Convergence #8. His powers are the same as the original Waverider but with the knowledge and history of Booster Gold.

Fictional character biography[edit]

Armageddon 2001[edit]

In the year 2030, the world had been ruled by a villain named Monarch, who destroyed all of the Earth's superheroes. Matthew Ryder, a scientist, who remembered the time he was a child and was saved by a superhero from a collapsing building, decided to fight back at Monarch's dictatorship. Matthew discovered that Monarch may have been a former hero, so Matthew built a time machine to travel back to the past to find out which hero would become Monarch. Unlike previous test subjects who had died when they tried the time machine, Matthew survived. However, he was merged with the time stream and was given numerous powers, two of them being to travel through time at his own free will and to predict a person's future. With his new powers and appearance, Matthew took up the superhero name, Waverider.[2]

Making his way into the year 1991, Waverider predicted the futures of numerous heroes, however none of them turned out to be Monarch. When Waverider accidentally came into contact with Captain Atom, the interaction of their powers resulted in a massive amount of temporal energy being unleashed. This created an opening in the quantum field which allowed Monarch, who had been monitoring Waverider's actions the whole time, to travel back in time to ensure his own existence. When Monarch later killed Dove, her partner Hawk became enraged and beat Monarch and unmasked him, only to see that Monarch was Hawk himself.[3]


Soon, Waverider and various heroes he gathered defeated a demonic being called Abraxis.[4] Later, while Waverider was traveling through the time stream, he encountered himself as Matthew Ryder, who was from the year 2030, although Matthew was still a regular human and he had not become Waverider since Monarch's future reign had been erased. Following this, the two of them joined the Linear Men- a group that contained time traveling beings who protected the time stream. Despite the Linear Men's policy of non-intervention in the timeline - to the point that the previously actively interfering Waverider was discouraged from preventing Superman's death during his first battle with Doomsday - Waverider came to Superman's aid when he discovered that Doomsday had returned to life and was now working with the Cyborg Superman. Recognizing the danger of Doomsday's existence, Waverider showed Superman a detailed vision of the past to explain the circumstances of Doomsday's origin as a genetically engineered being capable of evolving to overcome anything that proved capable of killing him, as well as discovering that Doomsday's hatred of Superman was due to Doomsday's traumatic origins on Krypton leaving him with a deeply rooted hatred of Kryptonians. The two heroes seemingly defeated the monster by taking him to the end of time, where the imprisoned Doomsday was destroyed by entropy as the universe itself collapsed.[5]

Later, during Zero Hour, Waverider was subsequently killed by Extant, who had evolved from Monarch.[6] However, the human Matthew Ryder was still alive and was soon contacted by Metron, who told Matthew that he had to become Waverider and that he was the only one who could use time travel to save the universe. Matthew was then transformed into a new version of Waverider and took the role his previous self did-helping a select group of heroes defeat Extant and Parallax's effort to recreate time according to their own design by triggering their own Big Bang with the aid of Damage.


See also: 52 (comics)

Junior and Georgia, two descendants of the villain Doctor Sivana, had rebuilt their father's sphere of Suspendium, which was able to let them travel in time. Although they were able to open a gateway in the past, they ultimately had to suspend their experiment. Right before shutting down the machine, they saw Waverider in the timestream but failed to recognize him.[7] Later, Waverider was seen talking with the dying Time Commander-one of the former time traveling villains he tried to recruit in his efforts to save the timeline. Skeets, infected and controlled by Mister Mind, then arrived and killed the Time Commander. He then asked Waverider where and "when" Rip Hunter was in the time stream. When Waverider refused to tell, Skeets brutally tortured Waverider and later implied that he killed him and was wearing his skin.[8]

Linear Woman[edit]

Black Beetle, Despero, Ultra-Humanite, and Degaton had intended on finding Rip and killing him, so then the time stream would no longer be guarded. Black Beetle took his allies to a destroyed Vanishing Point and revealed that Rip and the Linear Men were never in agreement about how to handle time and that Rip, tired of the Linear Men's interference, locked them away in a cell at Vanishing Point. The four villains then found the cell and tore it open, seeing an alive Matthew Ryder and Liri Lee in it.[9] Black Beetle asks the Linear Men to help bring Waverider back to life. But Supernova prevents Black Beetle from succeeding and he sends the Time Stealers back to the present, although Black Beetle escapes and the Linear Men go with him.[10] They then teleport through time to search for Waverider's corpse in the Earth's future desolate wasteland. After Black Beetle finds Waverider's corpse, he double-crosses them, revealing his plan to use Waverider's power to become invulnerable.[11] Black Beetle attempts to fuse with Waverider's corpse's power but is thwarted by Supernova. Instead, Liri fuses with Waverider's corpse to become Linear Woman, after which Black Beetle escapes. Rip and the rest of the Time Masters arrive however Linear Woman refuses to agree with Rip's rules of time travel and teleports herself and Matthew through the timestream.[12]


As the pre-Flashpoint Booster Gold is dying due to excessive time travel; his son Rip Hunter has the New 52 Booster take him to Vanishing Point, where the original Booster is taken to a secret room and surrenders his body to the time stream and then emerges as a new version of Waverider. Waverider then takes the other Booster and his sister, Goldstar, to the planet Telos where they resurrect the godlike version of Brainiac responsible for the Convergence crisis and convince him to undo it.[citation needed]

Powers and abilities[edit]

Waverider can time-travel as he wishes, and is always capable of accessing the time stream and monitoring it. He can also access a person's aura, and by touching them he can predict their most likely future at any time in their life. When he first received his powers, his entire appearance was transformed from a normal-looking man into a being with fire-like hair and yellow skin with a black outline along the back of his body. Waverider can also fly at lightspeed, can fire quantum energy blasts, can be come invisible, and also has the superpower of intangibility.

In other media[edit]


Waverider as he appears in Justice League Unlimited.
  • Waverider appeared in the animated series Justice League Unlimited as a member of the super-sized Justice League. He had no speaking appearances and only made very brief cameos in a few episodes, most notably in season 1, episode 1, "Initiation"; season 2, episode 8, "Hunter's Moon"; and season 2, episode 12, "Divided We Fall."
  • In the TV series Legends of Tomorrow, Rip Hunter's timeship is called the Waverider, with Gideon serving as the ships' A.I.[13]



  1. ^ Manning, Matthew K.; Dolan, Hannah, ed. (2010). "1990s". DC Comics Year By Year A Visual Chronicle. Dorling Kindersley. p. 250. ISBN 978-0-7566-6742-9. Armageddon 2001 was the DC Comics event of the summer...Written by Archie Goodwin and Denny O'Neil, and drawn by penciler Dan Jurgens, Armageddon 2001 chronicled the birth of time-traveling hero Waverider. 
  2. ^ Armageddon 2001 #1 (May 1991)
  3. ^ Armageddon 2001 #2 (October 1991)
  4. ^ Armageddon: Inferno (April 1992)
  5. ^ Superman/Doomsday: Hunter/Prey (January 1994)
  6. ^ Zero Hour #2 (September 1994)
  7. ^ 52 #26 (November 2006)
  8. ^ 52 #27 (December 2006)
  9. ^ Time Masters: Vanishing Point #3 (November 2010)
  10. ^ Time Masters: Vanishing Point #4 (October 2010)
  11. ^ Time Masters: Vanishing Point #5 (December 2010)
  12. ^ Time Masters: Vanishing Point #6 (February 2011)
  13. ^ Mitovich, Matt Webb (January 21, 2016). "Legends of Tomorrow EP Spills a Secret Behind the Big Lie — Plus: Grade It!". TVLine. Retrieved May 20, 2016. 

External links[edit]