hard light

Doctor Light (Kimiyo Hoshi)

Doctor Light is a fictional comic book superhero in the DC Comics universe.

Kimiyo Hoshi is a distinct character from the DC villain of the same name. She has, however, crossed paths with the villainous Doctor Light on several occasions. During their first encounter (Suicide Squad #52 (April 1991) ) they briefly ended up in each other's body; a description of their most recent meeting (Green Arrow vol. 3, #54 (November 2005)) appears below.

Character biography

Kimiyo Hoshi, a thoroughly unpleasant and selfish woman, was the supervising astronomer at an observatory in Japan, overseeing a group of male astronomers charting the unnatural effects of the Crisis on Infinite Earths. (She is also a medical doctor, as shown in Justice League Annual #3 (1989) and Justice League America #55 (October 1991).)

As the Crisis continued, Hoshi's fascination with the phenomenon grew into an obsession while the men grew concerned for their safety. Disgusted by their mounting fear, Hoshi arrogantly insulted them and ordered an evacuation, leaving her to study the Crisis alone through her telescope.

Meanwhile, the Monitor, a being linked with all positive matter, senses his enemy, the Anti-Monitor, absorbing yet another positive-matter Earth with his antimatter cloud. In order to tip the scales for the heroes of the positive universe, the Monitor activates one last warrior.

He sends a devastating beam of energy from the star Vega to Earth, which strikes the observing Hoshi, leaving massive destruction in its wake. Granted the power of photonics and the name Doctor Light, Hoshi is assigned by the Monitor to guard one of the vibrational forks needed to save the Earth. Teen Titans member Starfire and Outsiders member Halo set out to destroy the machine. Since Doctor Light can't speak to them in English, she resorts to blasting them away from the machine. Superman is the first to communicate with her, given his knowledge of most of Earth's languages.

Once the Earth's heroes and villains are brought aboard the Monitor's satellite, the Japanese-speaking Katana takes over as Kimiyo's translator.

Doctor Light, granted the ability to understand English, accompanies several heroes to the anti-matter universe to confront the Anti-Monitor. She and Superman soon discover the machines that the villain has deployed to destroy the remaining Earths. The Anti-Monitor ambushes the Man of Steel; Doctor Light defends Superman as best she can. Supergirl arrives, and sacrifices her life, allowing Doctor Light to carry the unconscious Superman to safety.

Seeing Supergirl's sacrifice makes Doctor Light realize how selfish she has been, and she resolves to change.

When Harbinger summons her to fight in the final battle, Doctor Light is ready. As the other heroes barrage the Anti-Monitor, she absorbs the energy of a gigantic star that he is using as a power source. Scoring the first fall of the Anti-Monitor during that battle, she blasts a gaping hole through him.

In the post-Crisis continuity, Supergirl was written out of existence, so it is explained that Doctor Light was inspired by the other heroes.

She is potentially one of the most powerful superheroines in the DC Universe, but she has not tapped into the heightened levels of power she used during the Crisis. (Although few remember those events, Doctor Light is one of the few who do, seeing as how she once mentioned in Showcase '96 #9 (October 1996) that she's faced "Anti-Matter Gods".)

Doctor Light has joined the Justice League a few times over the years, most notably as a member of Justice League Europe during the latter half of its incarnation. (She was also a one-time ally of the Outsiders and was briefly part of an incarnation of the Doom Patrol.) During her time on the Justice League Europe, she believed that her anti-social attitude during the Crisis was due to the food she regularly ate, after Power Girl is diagnosed with a similar condition. However, it is revealed that her behavior in Crisis was, in fact, her genuine behavior. While a member of the Justice League, Doctor Light formed significant friendships with The Flash (Wally West) and Power Girl. There is a protracted period of animosity with the member of the Global Guardians known as Rising Sun. His romantic endeavours win out and the two enter into a relationship

Infinite Crisis and after

In Green Arrow vol. 3, #54 (November 2005), following his recovery from the mind-wipe he suffered at the hands of the Justice League, Arthur Light, the villainous male Doctor Light attacked Doctor Hoshi and drained her of her powers.

It appeared that her de-powerment was temporary; in Infinite Crisis #5 (February 2006) she used her powers to aid in the evacuation of Tokyo, Japan. In that same issue she was warned by Bart Allen, in the costume of the Silver Age Flash, of the escape of an enraged Superboy-Prime. She was later seen in Infinite Crisis #7 (April 2006) battling the evil Doctor Light.

A flashback in Action Comics #838 (June 2006) reveals that Doctor Light and The Ray, heroes possessing solar-based powers, took part in an unsuccessful attempt to re-activate Superman's powers.

However, an article discussing the destruction of Star City (and, by extension, Kimiyo's depowerment) appeared at the 52 website, which is designed to complement the weekly comic series. The article places a date on the city's destruction, which was depicted in the final 2 Pre-OYL Green Arrow arcs, specifying that the event took place on May 15th. Problematically, this dating places the story after the events depicted in Infinite Crisis.

Given this dating, Kimoyo's depowerment took place during the events of 52 - Week 2 which, given Kimiyo and Green Arrow's appearances at the end of 52 - Week 1, would appear to make sense, although it in turn makes nonsense of information contained in Green Arrow vol. 3, #54, where it is revealed that Kimiyo has not used her powers for two years.

The story arc also concludes with Green Arrow experiencing a strange multiplying effect that places the story during Infinite Crisis, not two weeks after the event's conclusion. (Several other characters in the DCU experienced this effect in the issue of their titles that immediately preceded the OYL jump.)

Kimiyo Hoshi appeared in costume in 52 Week 35, alongside various other heroes. All are assisting the injured victims of Lex Luthor, who had caused a rain of 'supermen' by deactivating their powers. She is also shown in 52 Week 50, in the climactic battle of World War III.

Dr. Light appears in World War III: United We Stand, the fourth issue of the World War III mini-series that coincided with 52 Week 50. She is one of the first wave of heroes who confront (and are taken down by) Black Adam. He grasps her neck with such force that she instantly blacks out; he throws her aside.

Geoff Johns has revealed on his message board that he is working on storylines involving Doctor Light.

Oracle invites Kimiyo to join the Birds of Prey (issue #100), but she was not selected to take part in the first mission. She does, however, appear in Birds of Prey #113 (January 2008), assisting Oracle by scanning the electromagnetic spectrum for any evidence that might lead her to the parties responsible for an influx of hi-tech weaponry being smuggled into Metropolis. She is, however, unable to locate any such evidence.

Gail Simone has confirmed in a chat on comicbloc.com that Kimiyo's children have not been retconted out of existence by the recent changes to DC continuity (that resulted from Superboy-Prime tampering with reality during Infinite Crisis).

Powers

Doctor Light has the ability to manipulate ambient light for a variety of purposes. She can absorb all forms of illumination, and release that absorbed energy as blinding flashes of light, or destructive laser beams. She can refract lightwaves to create holographic images. Doctor Light can focus photons into "hard light" (a fictional form of energy which acts like a solid object), and fire blasts of pure force or create protective barriers. She can fly by riding lightwaves. She can also turn into light. Her weakness is that she needs a light source to fuel her powers, and being placed in an area of absolute darkness severely weakens her abilities.

Appearances in other media

Hoshi has appeared periodically in the Justice League Unlimited animated series on Cartoon Network. She has speaking roles in the episodes "Epilogue" and "The Great Brain Robbery" and is voiced by Lauren Tom. As well, her history is hinted at in the episode "Flashpoint," in which she is seen carrying Superman to safety after he tries to stop the fusion cannon.

Other versions

Teen Titans Go #48 has Killowat stuck in another dimension. That particular world is menaced by the Teen Tyrants (Teen Titans) and protected by The Brotherhood of Justice (Brotherhood of Evil). Kimiyo Hoshi is one of the Brotherhood's members.

Bibliography

List of titles

Significant appearances

  • Crisis on Infinite Earths #4 (July 1985); "And Thus Shall the World Die" - Hoshi is given superpowers by the Monitor. She becomes the fourth Doctor Light.
  • Justice League #1 (May 1987); "Born Again" - Doctor Light is given a Justice League signal device by Maxwell Lord (who is not officially connected to the League) in hopes she will join. Later, as Hoshi is giving a speech to the United Nations, the organization is attacked by terrorists (privately sent by Lord). Hoshi activates the signal device and joins the Justice League in defeating the terrorists.
  • Justice League #4 (August 1987); "Winning Hand" - Light, angry at Lord's deception to get her to join the League, quits.
  • Justice League Annual #3 (1989); "Around the World with the Justice League" - Hoshi joins the Japanese embassy of the Justice League in a non-superhero role.
  • Justice League America #54 (September 1991); "The Boot!" - Doctor Light rejoins the Justice League.
  • Justice League America #56 (November 1991); "Look Homeward Leaguers" - With their UN charter revoked and the League in flux, Doctor Light returns to Japan.
  • Justice League Spectacular #1 (March/April 1992); "Teamwork" - After the break-up of the former Justice League teams, Doctor Light is recruited by Green Lantern to help defeat the reorganized Royal Flush Gang. The heroes decide to recreate the Justice League branches and Light joins the new Justice League Europe.
  • Justice League Europe #37 (April 1992); "Changing" - Doctor Light gets a new costume.
  • Justice League Quarterly #7 (Summer 1992); "Time to Enjoy the Light" - Rising Sun of the Global Guardians woos Doctor Light.
  • Eclipso: The Darkness Within #2 (October 1992); "Brilliant Men" - A small group of heroes, including Doctor Light, saves the rest of the world's heroes who had been "eclipsed" by Eclipso.
  • Superman: The Man of Steel (February 1993); "Funeral for a Friend, Part 3: Funeral Day"; Superman (vol. 2)'' #76 (February 1993); "Funeral for a Friend, Part 4: Metropolis Mailbag II" - Doctor Light is among the heroes at Superman's funeral.
  • Justice League International vol. 2, #63 (April 1994); "Visions of Death" - Doctor Light becomes leader of Justice League International.
  • Justice League International vol. 2, #67 (August 1994); "Family Troubles" - With the dissolution of the European branch of the League, Doctor Light resigns to return to her children in Japan.
  • Showcase '96 #9 (October 1996); "Illumination" - After defeating a group of armored people who had come to upset one of her experiments, Hoshi decides she is both a scientist and a superhero.
  • Final Night #1 (November 1996); "Dusk" - After the sun is destroyed by the Sun-Eater, Doctor Light joins other former League members (the group was disbanded at this time) to help save the Earth.
  • JLA: Our Worlds at War #1 (September 2001); "A Date Which Will Live in Infamy" - Having joined the Outsiders, Doctor Light and the team battle Imperiex's scouts at the South Pole.
  • Wonder Woman vol. 2, #174-175 (November 2001-December 2001); Doctor Light is recruited by Wonder Woman, along with a large group of female superheroes, to battle Circe and her group of female supervillains.
  • Doom Patrol vol. 3, #4-6 (March 2002-May 2002); Doctor Light, along with Metamorpho, Elongated Man and Beast Boy, took part in a short-lived Doom Patrol team.
  • Identity Crisis #1 (August 2004); "Chapter One: Coffin" - Doctor Light attends the funeral of Sue Dibny.
  • Green Arrow vol.3, #53-54 The villain Doctor Light Steals Kimiyo's powers and leaves her badly injured and close to death.
  • Infinite Crisis #5 Kimiyo's powers have somehow returned to her, as she is seen using them to aid in the evacuation of Tokyo.
  • Teen Titans Annual #1 Kimiyo is helping with rescue efforts of Blüdhaven after Chemo was dropped on it.
  • Infinite Crisis #7 Kimiyo battles the evil Doctor Light.

External links

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