Giganta in Wonder Woman (Vol. 2) #175.
|First appearance||Wonder Woman (Vol. 1) #9 (Summer 1944)|
|Created by||William Moulton Marston|
|Alter ego||Dr. Doris Zeul|
|Team affiliations||Injustice League
Secret Society of Super Villains
|Abilities||Size manipulation (increasing)
Superhuman strength and durability, and limited invulnerability when in giant form
Giganta is a fictional character appearing in DC Comics publications and related media. A longtime enemy of Wonder Woman and an occasional foil for The Atom, Giganta possesses the superhuman ability to increase her physical size and mass, effectively transforming into a giantess. Her first appearance (Wonder Woman #9, volume 1, published in 1944), written by Wonder Woman creator William Moulton Marston, presents her as a brutish strongwoman. Later adaptations (including appearances on Hanna-Barbera's popular cartoon series Challenge of the Super Friends in the 1970s) introduced Giganta's size-changing ability, a feature which has been retained to date.
Giganta was introduced as a foe of the Golden Age Wonder Woman, first appearing in Wonder Woman #9 (volume 1). In the story, a scientist named Professor Zool artificially mutates an ape named Giganta into a malicious red-haired strongwoman. The mutation machine goes haywire and somehow reverts the world to an earlier stage. Giganta joins a primitive tribe to attack Wonder Woman, but is defeated. When the world gets to the Golden Age of humanity, Giganta causes trouble by encouraging a rebellion, which Wonder Woman stops. When the world returns to normal, Giganta is still in her "strongwoman" form. Giganta is ultimately subdued and captured by Wonder Woman and taken to Themiscrya for rehabilitation. In issue #28, she joins a rebellion of prisoners held on the island started by the Saturnian slaver Eviless, thereby becoming a member of the criminal team Villainy Inc. Eviless steals Wonder Woman's lasso and kidnaps Hippolyta. She joins with the Atlantean Queen Clea to cause trouble. Giganta is not seen again in the comics until 1966, in Wonder Woman #163 (volume 1), in which her origin is revamped to include another member of Wonder Woman's rogues' gallery, Doctor Psycho. This appearance also premiered a short-lived update to her look, giving her waist-length blond hair and an even larger physical stature..
Giganta is Dr. Doris Zeul, who suffers from a fatal blood disease. She captures Wonder Woman and plans to put her "life-essence" into Wonder Woman's body using an experimental machine. Interrupted by Wonder Girl halfway through the experiment she ends up with her consciousness in a test animal gorilla named Giganta.
Desperate to return her mind to a human body, Zeul the gorilla abducts a comatose circus strongwoman named Olga with size-changing abilities through unknown means (though Olga was comatose due to a mysterious shaman) and uses the machine to successfully transfer her mind into that body, keeping the villain name "Giganta".
Following her transformation, Giganta allies herself with Queen Clea and the modern incarnation of Villainy Inc. in an attempt to conquer the lost world of Skartaris. Villainy Inc. is defeated by Wonder Woman, but Giganta is subsequently seen as a member of several criminal groups, including the Secret Society of Super Villains.
As part of the Society, she takes part in the "Battle of Metropolis", a confrontation with multiple heroes, including Elasti-Girl, the size-changing member of the Doom Patrol. The Society ultimately loses this battle.
When Diana Prince noted that Giganta's intellect reduces as she grows in size, compelling the villain to become less rational and more prone to violence, she was corrected by her colleagues in the Department of Metahuman Affairs. They implied that Giganta has overcome that limitation and retains her full intelligence at any size.
Giganta, along with The Cheetah and Doctor Psycho, engage in a battle with Donna Troy (who has assumed the identity of Wonder Woman one year after the events of Infinite Crisis), as part of a search for, as they term it, the "real" Wonder Woman (Diana of Themyscira). The villains continue their quest, holding Troy hostage in order to draw Diana out for a rescue attempt and contend with the current Wonder Girl, Robin, and Diana herself in the guise of government agent Diana Prince. Giganta and her allies also battle Hercules, with the giantess being felled by the legendary champion.
Giganta is a teacher at Ryan Choi's Ivy Town University. Infected and controlled by M'Nagalah, the monstrous Cancer god, she was sent to seduce and capture Ryan Choi, the new Atom, in the process even going so far as to swallow the miniature hero alive (he escapes, and also discovers that she has a tongue piercing). Now free of M'Nagalah's control, a seemingly repentant Dr. Zeul retains her position at Ivy University and has approached Ryan for a second chance, despite the bizarre circumstances of their first meeting.
Before their second date, the Atom is approached by Wonder Woman on behalf of the Department of Metahuman Affairs and asked to wear a wire on his date with Dr. Zeul. After professing her desire to reform, she is informed that Ryan is wearing a wire and tears off the roof of the restaurant to see Wonder Woman and Ryan talking - unaware that Ryan had removed the wire. A fight between Wonder Woman and Giganta ensues. Wonder Woman quickly knocks Giganta out but Ryan intervenes to stop Wonder Woman from beating her further, after admitting she had lost her temper - they realize that Dr. Zeul has disappeared. Whether she heard or saw Ryan's actions to stop her from getting further injuries is yet to be seen.
Giganta is also a member of Libra's Secret Society of Super Villains, during the Final Crisis and is shown as a thrall of Darkseid alongside several other super-powered women. She is now called Gigantrix. Over the course of the series she fights as one of the new incarnations of the Female Furies with Wonder Woman, Batwoman and Catwoman. She is possessed by the spirit of the fury Stompa, and only freed when Supergirl smashes the skull-and-crossbones mask from her face.
Giganta is attacked by Diana while on her way to a date with Ryan Choi, implying that their relationship has survived despite earlier difficulties. Mellower than in her appearances in the All-New Atom series, she seems to accept and respect the shortcomings brought by their different lifestyles, going so far to help Wonder Woman in a mission, reasoning that, with Ryan being a superhero, they should both be used to putting their heroics in front of their private lives.
Most recently, Bane hires her on as one of the new members of Secret Six. The team also includes the shrinking killer, Dwarfstar, who recently hired Deathstroke and his Titans to kill Ryan Choi. Giganta initially seems unaware of this fact, admitting to Dwarfstar that she is dating the Atom (much to Dwarfstar's amusement). Following a disastrous mission to Skartaris, Amanda Waller reveals the details of Ryan's murder to Giganta. After luring Dwarfstar to her bedroom with the promise of sex, Giganta strips him of his belt (the source of his powers) and beats him into submission. She is last heard covering Dwarfstar's mouth with duct tape to stifle his screams, telling him that she plans on keeping him alive so that she can prolong his suffering.
In September 2011, The New 52 rebooted DC's continuity. In this new timeline, Giganta appears as a member of the Secret Society during the "Trinity War" storyline. She assists Vandal Savage and Signalman into tracking Pandora. When the three villains attack Pandora, Pandora successfully subdues Giganta. Her costume combines elements from her original and One Year Later costumes.
After her first encounter with Pandora, Giganta returns for revenge following the conclusion of the Forever Evil storyline. During their fight, Pandora looks into Giganta's soul, and reveals her origin story. Doris Zuel was a bullied child with a blood disease, but cured herself with a radical procedure that gave her her growth powers. A side-effect of the untested operation was that it reduced her intellect.
Giganta is later recruited by agents of S.H.A.D.E. to serve as a supernormal asset, fighting vampires and other monsters. She is tempted by the offer of a pardon for her crimes almost as much for the chance to kill things, which she admits to enjoying.
Later, Wonder Woman and Steve Trevor tracked Giganta down to a Los Angeles museum. Giganta had been stealing mystical artifacts for unknown reasons. Wonder Woman managed to defeat the giantess. She was then taken into custody. When Steve Trevor interrogated Giganta in Belle Reve alongside Amanda Waller, he discovered that Giganta had been recruited by Darkseid to steal the artifacts. She told Steve Trevor where to find the remaining artifacts. She also revealed that she, Steve, and Wonder Woman have had a long history together, suggesting that many of her past appearances pre-Rebirth are still part of the current continuity.
Giganta has the ability to increase her size from 6'6" to several hundred feet. These powers seem to have been given to her magically since the magical power stealing Black Alice is able to copy her powers.
Though strength and durability are not at superhuman level until she grows, she is still a formidable foe possessing some training in personal combat. As a giant, she is strong and durable enough to take on Wonder Woman.
Giganta's suit is specialized to grow with her and enhances her invulnerability. Even at normal size, it is bulletproof and resistant to extremes of heat and cold.
Giganta is also a brilliant scientist who now retains her full intelligence at any size.
In the 'Odyssey' storyline that ran through issues 601-614 of Wonder Woman, Giganta was one of many characters re-imagined in the alternate reality created by the goddess Nemesis. She was part of a trio - along with Artemis of Bana-Mighdall and Barbara Minerva - of dead Amazons resurrected by the Morrigan to hunt Wonder Woman.
Giganta possessed no size-altering power, instead relying upon enormous natural strength (enough to shatter a stone statue and throw a school bus) and a double-headed axe to fight. She dressed in Amazonian battle-garb decorated with leopard print, in a callback to her original costume, and stood over six feet tall.
Giganta is eventually won around to Diana's side after being shown the truth of the Morrigan's lies. She joins her in attacking their stronghold, killing Bellona with her axe even as her flesh is melted from her bones by the goddess' magic.
Giganta was featured as a member of the Legion of Doom in Alex Ross' maxi-series Justice. Here she is in her traditional costume, though she briefly disguises herself as a nurse and wears hunting gear in her first appearance. She attempts to assassinate the Atom in his office using a sniper rifle, but Palmer is distracted by a phone call and is instead hit in the shoulder. Later in the hospital, Giganta tries to smother the Atom to death with a pillow, though he escapes using his belt and knocks Giganta out a window by getting in her eye. Later, when the Legion toast their apparent victory, she is seen talking with Gorilla Grodd about his suspicions towards Lex Luthor and Brainiac's goals. When the Justice League storm the Hall of Doom itself, Giganta fights the League as a whole rather than any particular target. In the end she is defeated by Rita Farr of the Doom Patrol. Her origin is more in-line with that of her Golden Age and DC animated universe counterparts, having originally been a gorilla altered into a human, though she has no known connections with Gorilla Grodd or Gorilla City itself.
In the Flashpoint universe, two conflicting versions of Giganta existed. In Lois Lane's tie-in miniseries, she joined with the Amazons' Furies, as they had taken over the United Kingdom, and ambushed the resistance. Here her appearance resembled that of her 'Odyssey' counterpart, and she seemingly possessed no super-powers. She was last seen fighting against Grifter on London Bridge, parrying his gunshots with twin swords.
Conversely, in Hal Jordan's miniseries, Giganta appears in her traditional, original costume, and is capable of growing large enough to grasp and crush fighter jets in her hands. When she is about to kill Hal while he struggles to control his damaged plane, Giganta is shot in the eyes by Carol Ferris, collapsing and playing no further role in the fight.
Giganta is referred to by name only in the Lois Lane series, so the two conflicting versions may be reconciled by assuming that the giantess may in fact just be another magically-powered Amazon with a similar costume.
An illusion of Giganta appears in the second story arc of the comic book based on the Wonder Woman TV series, though she did not have any appearances in that television series. She, along with several other enemies, was created by Doctor Psycho in order to battle Wonder Woman. Similar to her more recent comic counterparts, Giganta had the ability to grow to immense heights.
Giganta was set to appear in the second volume to The Legend of Wonder Woman, a retelling of Wonder Woman's origins by Renae de Liz and Ray Dillon. However, DC cancelled the project under unknown circumstances. De Liz later posted preliminary artwork featuring Giganta on Twitter.
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