Real Name: Melissa Hanover
human mutant, mutate, magic-user, or otherwise;
her true identity was known only to the Squadron Supreme;
US citizen without a criminal record
Group Membership: Formerly the Redeemers
(Black Archer/Wyatt McDonald, Foxfire/Olivia Underwood, Haywire/Harold
Danforth, Inertia/Edith Freiberg, Lamprey/Donald McGuiggin, Mink/Julie
Steel, Nighthawk/Kyle Richmond, Pinball/Chester
Michael Redstone, Remnant/Frank
Edwards, Shape/Raleigh Lund,
formerly the Squadron Supreme (Arcanna Jones, Blue Eagle/James Dore Jr., Doctor Spectrum/Joseph Ledger, Haywire/Harold Danforth, Hyperion/Mark Milton, Inertia/Edith Freiberg, Power Princess/Zarda Shelton, Michael Redstone, Thermite/Sam Yurimoto, Whizzer/Stanley Stewart)
Affiliations: Arcanna Jones, Cerebrax, Master Menace (Emil Burbank), Professor Imam,
Enemies: Ape X (Xina),
Nth Man (Thomas
Lightner, originally from Earth-616);
formerly Squadron Supreme
Known Relatives: None (specifically noted as unmarried)
Aliases: "Moonpie" (nickname used by Thermite), "Moon" (nickname used by Inertia)
Base of Operations: Unrevealed;
formerly Squadron City, Cosmopolis, USA;
formerly Richmond Manor, New Troy, USA;
First Appearance: Squadron Supreme I#10 (June, 1986)
Powers/Abilities: Through unrevealed ways, Moonglow
gained the power to generate and project powerful three dimensional
audio-visual-tactile-olfactory-(and presumably gustatory) illusions via
affecting the perceptions of others. Deeply insecure over her actual weight
and appearance, her powers allowed her
to give herself any appearance she desired, using it to appear as an
Amazonian-type woman in her dealings with the Squadron. She could also
use her powers to make people believe she had a different set of super
powers altogether, successfully tricking the Squadron Supreme into
believing she could fly and manipulate gravity while in actuality she
turned herself invisible and simply called forth whatever illusion she
felt appropriate for the situation. Moonglow must actively concentrate
on generating her illusions, if she loses consciousness they vanish
Though she longs for adventure and excitement but can easily lose her nerve when things get too dangerous. Hanover tries to mask her true feelings by acting self superior and arrogant as Moonglow. The fear that someone sees her for who she really is, is accompanied by a deep sense of shame.
Though out of shape and reluctant to engage in actual combat, she did receive some hand-to-hand training from Nighthawk (Kyle Richmond).
(Squadron Supreme I#11 (fb) - BTS) - Even before she received or discovered her powers, the frumpy Melissa Hanover longed for excitement, afraid she was destined to live a life of boredom.
(Squadron Supreme I#12 (fb) - BTS) - After mastering her powers and taking on the codename Moonglow, Hanover generated an illusion that made everyone around her believe she was actually an attractive, tall, blonde bombshell.
(Squadron Supreme I#7 - BTS) - At an unrevealed point in time after she found himself empowered, Moonglow was noticed by Professor Imam. When Nighthawk came to Imam in hopes of recruiting super-powered allies to fight the Squadron and their Utopia Program, the Professor handed Nighthawk a power pyramid that would guide him to those who could help him.(Squadron Supreme I#10 - BTS) - Using the pyramid, Nighthawk and his allies Pinball, Remnant and Mink traveled the country recruiting six superhumans sympathetic to their cause, including Moonglow. Now calling their group the Redeemers, the ten member team trained in secret at Nighthawk's luxurious New Troy manor. During this period, they kept close tabs on the Squadron's whereabouts and activities.
(Squadron Supreme I#10) - During one of their regular meetings, the Redeemers watched a recent news report on the death of Tom Thumb and the introduction of the Hibernaculum, designed to preserve life even in the face of certain death. They then all shared what they'd learned about the Squadron and how they could use it to speed up the team's downfall. Moonglow added that Power Princess had taken over Squadron leadership from Hyperion without any explanation. Nighthawk then turned the subject to how the ten of them were going to overthrow the Squadron.
(Squadron Supreme I#10 - BTS) - During the meeting, it was
decided that Moonglow and Redstone would infiltrate the Squadron,
literally by applying for a job as members of the Squadron Supreme.
(Squadron Supreme I#10) - Learning that Squadron members Blue Eagle, Shape and Whizzer were making an appearance at a civil service building in midtown Cosmopolis, the two simply walked into the job agency and introduced themselves to the heroes, claiming they wanted to join. Intrigued, the Squadronners wanted Redstone and Moonglow to demonstrate their abilities. When Redstone lifted a car over his head with no visible effort and Moonglow made them believe she could control gravity itself, the Whizzer decided they definitely had potential and could be of use, seeing as the Squadron was greatly understaffed. Redstone and Moonglow were blindfolded and taken to the team's hidden base Squadron City.
(Squadron Supreme I#10 - BTS) - Moonglow and Redstone
departing with Whizzer and the others made TV headlines. When Nighthawk
and Black Archer watched the report, the archer was most pleased, seeing
as this meant they only had to sneak in three more members. Later at
Squadron City, with Redstone and Moonglow in their temporary guest
quarters, the Squadron Supreme discussed what to do with their two new
applicants. Whizzer proposed a trial membership, while Arcanna cautioned
that a thorough background check was in order. The zealous Blue Eagle
suggested they'd subject the two to the b-mod device that turned the
Squadron's former enemies in the Institute of Evil into loyal members of
the team. In the end, it was decided to not only let the two of them
join without altering their minds, the Squadron would also launch a
nation wide recruitment program to enlist other superhumans who might
not know they'd be welcome to join.
(Squadron Supreme I#11 - BTS) - In the weeks that followed, Moonglow and Redstone were joined by their fellow Redeemers Haywire, Inertia, and Thermite who were all admitted to the Squadron on a provisional basis as well.
(Squadron Supreme I#11) - During a series of "capture the flag" training sessions with the Squadron, the team was split in squads of two. Redstone, Moonglow, Blue Eagle and Shape squared off against Lamprey, Haywire, Inertia, Thermite and Foxfire. Moonglow used her powers of illusion to make it appear as if she was tangling in the air with Lamprey, who quickly noticed something was off. In the end, Moonglow's illusions allowed her to slip past the opposition invisibly and capture the flag. Afterwards, Moonglow apologized to Redstone for almost blowing their cover by using her real powers. Michael assured her no one important noticed. Minutes later, on the shuttle back Squadron City, Whizzer announced to the new recruits they'd best get ready for a special assembly that night. As it turned out, the Squadron had arranged a special press conference during which the five recruits were officially inducted into the team. During the swearing in ceremony, Moonglow couldn't help but feel hypocritical, swearing allegiance to the Squadron while they were actually actively trying to destroy them from the inside out. Still, she was relieved the Squadron didn't discover anything incriminating when researching her background. Now a full fledged member, Moonglow was granted full access to the team's databanks.
(Squadron Supreme I#11 - BTS) - The ceremony was watched
by Moonglow's fellow Redeemers who were overjoyed to see their teammates
were now in.
(Squadron Supreme I#11) - Later that night, using her newly gained security clearance as a Squadron member, Moonglow went to Tom Thumb's labs and accessed all the plans on the b-mod device, Squadron City's location and defenses and sent it via modem to Master Menace and the Redeemers, in hopes they could come up with a way to counteract the effects of the brainwashing device. She was surprised by the arrival of Ape X (Xina), but figured a simple illusion would keep the cybernetic simian from noticing her. As she left the premises, she couldn't help but feel exhilarated and grateful to Nighthawk for saving her from a life of boredom.
(Squadron Supreme I#11 - BTS) - Even though Ape X was
fooled by Moonglow's illusions, Tom Thumb's sentient computer program
A.I.D.A. wasn't. Concerned about Moonglow's actions, A.I.D.A. informed Ape X of
what had just occurred. Ape X reviewed the security tapes and was
shocked to find A.I.D.A. was right. This discovery tore apart Xina's b-mod
altered mind: the treatment prevented her from betraying any Squadron
member under any circumstance, but Moonglow had betrayed the Squadron
and should be reported, yet she couldn't tell on her because of the
b-mod directive. This insolvable dilemma eventually rendered Ape X
Further, having seen the result the sharing of the information had on Ape X, A.I.D.A. elected not to pass on the information to anyone else.
(Squadron Supreme I#11) - After completing her task, Moonglow assured the other newly inducted Redeemers she'd finished her assignment without anyone seeing her. Inertia had her doubts though, causing Moonglow to rhetorically ask if she took her for an incompetent. Concerned Moonglow might be a bit too full of herself, Inertia decided to visit the lab the following day and wipe some memory banks with her powers.
(Squadron Supreme I#11 - BTS) - Nighthawk and the other Redeemers were contacted by Master Menace who had used the b-mod design schematics that Moonglow had sent to construct a device that undid the mental reprogramming. Figuring out they needed someone to test it out on, Haywire was contacted to lure Lamprey to a spot where the Redeemers and Master Menace were waiting. Lamprey was overpowered and subjected to the treatment, returning the energy vampire to his dangerously unstable former self. Deciding Shape would be a suitable second candidate, Redstone and Thermite were asked to bring him to the Redeemers' Harbor City hideout. The duo got their simple-minded teammate to accompany them with the promise of a picnic. Once safely away from the Squadron (but actually followed by Blue Eagle), Thermite quickly encased him in a block of ice that Redstone carried to the Redeemer base. Redstone brought in Shape, who was still squirming and screaming that this wasn't the picnic he was promised. He put him in the machine anyway. Meanwhile, Black Archer and Remnant spotted and captured Blue Eagle. After a brief discussion, it was agreed to subject the Blue Eagle to the mind control device, though Nighthawk demanded they'd only use it to erase his memory of what he had seen here. Remnant and the Black Archer held the struggling Eagle in place while the behavior modification began. Still, even this minor violation of his former teammate's mind left the conscientious Nighthawk feeling he'd just sold his soul.
(Squadron Supreme I#12 - BTS) - Worried that Shape might inadvertently give the game away because of his limited understanding of the situation, Moonglow decided to shadow him.
(Squadron Supreme I#12) - Moonglow watched Shape visit the still catatonic Ape X, telling his old friend Xina all about what had happened to him during the day he was deprogrammed. Figuring this would prove problematic down the road, Moonglow cast an illusion, making Shape believe Ape X awoke from her coma and talked to him. "Ape X" told Shape the Squadron was out to kill him and that he should only trust new members like Moonglow which the gullible adventurer accepted without question.
(Squadron Supreme I#12) - A year after the Squadron had officially taken over America, the team came back to Washington to report the results. Moonglow and the other Redeemers and unbrainwashed members felt somewhat uneasy standing with the Squadron as Power Princess proudly announced the Squadron Supreme had achieved all it had set out to do, before officially opening the first Hibernacle, designed to keep anyone dying or recently dead in cryonic suspension until a cure for their ailment could be found.
(Squadron Supreme I#12 - BTS) - Nighthawk and the remaining Redeemers, using information supplied by Moonglow, traveled to Squadron City, penetrated its magical cloak and waited around for the Squadron to return from their Washington ceremony.
(Squadron Supreme I#12) - As soon as they landed on their airfield, the Squadron Supreme spotted Nighthawk and his Redeemers. Much to their surprise, Moonglow and the others switched sides. However, in the opening moments of their inevitable confrontation Dr. Spectrum managed to trap the hands of all his opponents in force bubbles. Once Spectrum had been taken out by Inertia, however, Moonglow was free to join the fight. She sought out the extremely pregnant Arcanna (who had chosen to keep her pregnancy a secret from the team by magically hiding the signs.) All the sudden excitement of the Redeemer battle caused Arcanna to go into labor, even as Moonglow used her illusions to trick Arcanna into thinking she was being crushed by gravitational forces. As Arcanna, in obvious pain, dropped her own illusion and revealed her pregnancy, Moonglow wasn't sure how to respond, figuring the witch might be trying to trick her. Moonglow kept Arcanna trapped underneath the illusory gravitational dome. Shape spotted the two women fighting and asked Moonglow what she was doing. This distracted Hanover enough for Arcanna to slowly crawl out of the illusion while leaving one of herself behind as to not raise suspicion. Turning invisible, Arcanna approached Moonglow and knocked her out. Hanover immediately reverted to her true self upon losing consciousness, leaving Shape to wonder why Moonglow looked different when she sleeps. Moonglow recovered in time to witness the conclusion of the battle, which stopped after Hyperion decided to disband the Squadron. Later, once more in her illusory form, she and the other surviving Squadron and Redeemer members visited the morgue to grieve for those who did not live through the encounter.
(Squadron Supreme: Death Of A Universe I#1 - BTS) - Terribly ashamed of the fact her true, frumpy form had been revealed, Moonglow hung around Squadron City for several days, preferring to keep herself invisible to avoid having to face her peers. Unbeknownst to Moonglow and everyone else on Earth (except for Professor Imam and Master Menace), Earth-616's Nth Man had entered their reality and was slowly starting to grow and devour all he encountered out in space. Imam alerted Hyperion (who was meeting with the president and the newly instated cabinet) and asked him and Power Princess to come to his Temple of Contemplation.
(Squadron Supreme: Death Of A Universe I#1) - Moonglow, invisibly, watched from a distance as young lovers Haywire and Inertia frolicked about in Squadron City's Kingston Park. Annoyed at her predicament and afraid she would be judged by her fellow teammates, Moonglow turned away, dropped her spells and, showing her true form, walked off.
(Squadron Supreme: Death Of A Universe I#1 - BTS) - After meeting with Imam, the Squadron leaders learned of the unknown menace from space rapidly approaching Earth. Imam accompanied the two heroes back to Squadron City.
(Squadron Supreme: Death Of A Universe I#1) - Moonglow attended the general Squadron meeting called by Hyperion and Power Princess after they returned with Imam. Initially, the team wasn't convinced with Hyperion's claim of a calamity that took precedence over discontinuing the Utopia initiative, with the rebellious Redstone even claiming it was all a ruse so Hyperion would not have to relinquish power. However, Imam was able to convince Moonglow and the others the threat to Earth was quite real. It was then decided to seek out Master Menace's help, figuring he was the only one with the scientific expertise to help save Earth. As Hyperion flew off to meet his archenemy, he told Moonglow and the others to pack for a weeklong excursion into space.
(Squadron Supreme: Death Of A Universe I#1 - BTS) - Master Menace was already aware of the threat to Earth, even before he was visited by the Scarlet Centurion, ruler of 40th century Earth. Even as the two evil geniuses discussed the matter, Hyperion approached Menace's citadel. After dealing with the defense systems, Hyperion managed to get Menace and the Centurion to help him save Earth. The villains disappeared into the future to build machinery that would trap and deflect the Nth Man to another dimension. After 15 years in the 40th century, Menace and the Centurion returned, their mission a success.
(Squadron Supreme: Death Of A Universe I#1 (fb) - BTS) - Concerned with Arcanna's wellbeing, seeing as she'd just given birth to her son Benjamin Michael a week ago, Power Princess ordered the Squadron's magical member to stay behind. The outraged sorceress was approached by Moonglow who was deathly afraid about going into space and facing what she felt would be certain death. The two decided to switch identities, with Hanover allowing Arcanna to assume her identity as Moonglow (while carrying around her newborn son, Benjamin)
(Squadron Supreme: Death Of A Universe I#1) - Posing as Arcanna, accompanied by Jones' husband and children, Moonglow saw the Squadron off before disappearing to parts unknown.
(Squadron Supreme: Death Of A Universe I#1 - BTS) - Just as the Nth Man was about to overtake the Squadron Supreme's ship and all hope seemed lost, Arcanna revealed herself to Power Princess who, though somewhat irked by Jones disobeying orders, was happy she'd at least be spending her final moments with someone she actually liked.
Comments: Created by Mark Gruenwald (writer), Paul Ryan (pencils), Sam de la Rosa (inks)
Mark Gruenwald's decision to have the gorgeous Moonglow turn out to be a homely, somewhat unattractive woman is a move that always reminded me of the way Mastermind (Jason Wyngarde) used his powers in Uncanny X-Men leading up to the Dark Phoenix incident. It makes perfect sense, though... If your power is creating illusions, why not allow yourself to look better than you do?Moonglow received profiles in the Official Handbook of the Marvel Universe II#12 and The Official Handbook of the Marvel Universe Master Edition I#15.
Since Moonglow "was relieved the Squadron didn't discover anything incriminating when researching her background," one wonders what sort of events in her background she might have been concerned about.
In the early 1980s, DC Comics had Batman resign from the Justice League of
America over political differences. The Batman then went on to form his own
team of heroes, the Outsiders. The Outsiders included Geo-Force (a man with
earth-based powers), Halo (a flying young woman with light-based powers) and
by the mid-80s, they added Looker (a plain-Jane woman who was transformed into
a statuesque beauty with mental powers).
Considering the parallels between the JLA and and Squadron, I'd say this all could be considered a parallel with Nighthawk forming his Redeemers, with Redstone as Geo-Force and Moonglow as sort of a combination of Halo/Looker; although none of the other Outsiders had Redeemers counterparts.
Unless otherwise specified, all locations and beings related in this profile refer to Earth/Reality-712 versions.
Thanks to MarvellousLuke for image clean-up.
Profile by Norvo.
Moonglow should not be confused with
images: (without ads)
Squadron Supreme I#10 p14, panels 5&6 (Moonglow pretends to have power over light and gravity);
Squadron Supreme I#11, p12, panel 7 (Moonglow stealing the plans to the b-mod device);
Squadron Supreme I#12, p9, panels 6&7 (Moonglow manipulates Shape);
Squadron Supreme I#12, p32, pan5 (Moonglow true form revealed);
Squadron Supreme Death of a Universe I#1 p67, pans1&2 (Arcanna reveals she has impersonated Moonglow)
Squadron Supreme I#10 (June, 1986) - Mark Gruenwald (writer), Paul Ryan (pencils), Sam de la Rossa (inks), Ralph Macchio (editor)
Squadron Supreme I#11 (July, 1986) - Mark Gruenwald (writer), Paul Ryan (pencils), Sam de la Rossa (inks), Ralph Macchio (editor)
Squadron Supreme I#12 (August, 1986) - Mark Gruenwald (writer), Paul Ryan (pencils), Sam de la Rossa (inks), Ralph Macchio (editor)
Squadron Supreme: Death of a Universe (November, 1989) - Mark Gruenwald (writer), Paul Ryan (pencils), Al Williamson (inks), Ralph Macchio (editor)
First Posted: 08/25/2014
Last updated: 01/30/2015
Any Additions/Corrections? please let me know.
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