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The Phantom Stranger is a fictional character from the paranormal origins unspecified fighting against the mysterious and the occult forces in various books published by DC Comics, and sometimes from his Vertigo label.

Publication history

The Phantom Stranger appeared for the first time within his eponymous series, output in August / September 1952, and created by John Broome and Carmine Infantino: This lasted six numbers. After an appearance in Showcase #. 80 (February 1969), has become the star of another series in May-June of 1969 that lasted until February-March of 1976. The first three numbers were composed of reprints with new short stories, but new stories have become from the fourth number, produced by Len Wein, Jim Aparo, Neal Adams, Tony DeZuniga and others. In these stories, while the past of the Stranger has remained a mystery, the writers added a cast of semi-regular characters who work alongside: a blind seer named Cassandra Craft who assists (appeared for the first time in 17), an alchemist / magician named Tannarak (appeared for the first time in 10) that before was his enemy and then helped him against the Dark Circle (appeared for the first time in 20), and a sorceress demon named Tala who will become his main enemy (which appeared for the first time on 4). The stories make allusions to a romantic attraction between the Stranger and Craft, but in the end he leaves her, deciding that she can not be part of his life. Doctor Thirteen appeared in early issues, usually as an enemy of the Stranger, believing the latter a crook.

However, the Phantom Stranger is best known for his role as a supernatural helper for the other heroes, such as the Justice League. The League offered him to become a member, even though he initially declined before accepting. This makes unclear the actual date of his admission. It was not, as has been reported in some reports, a simple honorary member. He has claimed responsibility for two times its member status when the other components of the League challenged his contribution, particularly during the vote on the re-admission to the League of Wonder Woman. She then confirmed his status as a member later, at a later adventure League. The Phantom Stranger has also supported its membership in the mini-series JLA / Avengers when the League doubted that he was there to help them.

The Stranger was also the protagonist in a miniseries of 1987. This series depicting him as an agent of the Order Lords. For refusing to help them in their war against the Lords of Chaos, they temporarily deprived him of his powers. In this series also it appears in Eclipso of Chaos Agent robes. However since then no other story has provided the sources for these events, and may no longer be in continuity due to alterations of reality occurred during Zero Hour and Infinite Crisis.

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