Ripley Hunter (Time Master)

Yet another trailer has been revealed this week, the Arrow and The Flash spinoff Legends of Tomorrow. You can find most of the characters who’ll appear in the new team already on this blog, but there are still a couple we don’t know yet. First of all, Rip Hunter, portrayed by Arthur Darvill: he’s the time traveler that arrives from the future to put the team together in order to stop the machinations of Vandal Savage and protect the timeline. This is Hunter’s first live action appearance, and he’s not exactly an easy character to portray…especially becuase in the comics there is more than one version of him, living at the same time. The show’s version looks more like the second, but everything remains to be seen yet. In the meanwhile, let’s see who Rip Hunter is in the comics.

In his first appearance, Ripley Hunter was a brilliant yet absolutely normal man, a researcher specialised in quantum mechanics. His studies, however, proved to be extraordinary, as he was the first human being ever to discover a way to travel through time: he used this knowledge on the first time machine in history, the Time Sphere, and after a succesful trial, he nicknamed himself the Time Master and started exploring the timeline. Hunter also formed a team, composed of his ladyfriend Bonnie Baxter, her brother Corky and his best friend Jeff Smith: together, they traveled through time to learn from the past and to collect lost knowledge, but eventually their mission grew in proportions, as they discovered some unspoken threats able to destroy the entire timestream. During one of their travels, in fact, they raced to the dawn of time itself, only to discover an unusual pyramid releasing lethal radiations. Unable to destroy it, Hunter and the others came back to the present, where Rip were recruited in the Immortal Man‘s team, riphuntercomics1the Forgotten Heroes: together with Superman, the Forgotten managed to destroy the pyramids scattered through time and to prevent the alien invasion they were the vanguard of. After the Immortal Man was “killed”, the Forgotten Heroes scattered, but a greater threat emerged as the Multiverse started collapsing. The source of the destruction was the cosmic being Anti-Monitor, and Hunter led an army of heroes to the dawn of time to destroy him. The battle resulted in the destruction of the Multiverse and the creation of New Earth, a single universe different from all the previous ones, but the Anti-Monitor still lived. Hunter joined a group of cosmic heroes, and allied with villains such as Brainiac and Darkseid, finally destroying the enemy and saving the new universe. As he soon realised, however, Rip Hunter was apparently the only being in existence who had memories of the previous universe, and nobody else, his fellow time travelers included, even remembered he had ever existed. Alone and out of his time, Hunter witnessed a new version of him be born in New Earth, only to understand ita wasn’t his universe anymore. When he tried to come back to a dimension that didn’t exist anymore, he was contacted by the Linear Men, the police guarding over time, and was offered a place among them. Now a guardian of time, he started a brand new life far away from everything he had never known.

The Rip Hunter born in the new universe was slightly different from the original. First of all, he was born in a different time, in the 25th Century, and he was the son of Michael Jon Carter, an actor that would have become the heroic Booster Gold by traveling to the past. Any other detail about his early life remains unknown as, upon becoming a time traveler like his pre-Chrisis version, Hunter decided to erase from history all data about his true name, birthplace or any other information that could have led his enemies to travel through time and kill him as a newborn, or to kill his parents to prevent his birth. Being the inventor of time travel, Rip Hunter helped his own riphuntercomics2father to reach the past and become the hero he was destined to be, and assisted Booster Gold in some of his adventures through time (all the time keeping his kinship with him a secret); he also assisted Buddy Baker, the Animal Man, in the same way. During his travels, however, Hunter discovered the evidence of a cataclism that would have invested the entire timestream from an unspecified era, something beyond any imagination, that had to be stopped before it ever occured. His investigations on the phenomen brought to his attention the existence of a secret group, the Illuminati, manipulating governments, corporations and religions, dating back to the 11th Century. The head, founder and éminence grise of the Illuminati was the immortal Vandal Savage, one of the planet’s most dangerous villains, an immoral genius who manipulated history since the dawn of mankind. Hunter soon discovered that Savage and his Illuminati would have been the direct cause of the disaster he had forseen, so he elected him to his personal nemesis, and started hunting him down in every age of human history, in the attempt to foil his plans before they even came to his mind. Problem was that in this new universe, time corrected itself every time something (or someone) ripped through its structure, so Hunter had to devise always new methods of traveling through time if he wanted to continue his personal crusade against Savage and his Illuminati. Unfortunately, tracking down Savage led Hunter to prehistoric times, an age in which finding new means of time travel wasn’t exactly an easy task. Stranded in a hostile time with no tech at disposal, Rip Hunter had all the time in the world to think of a way to come back to more civilized times…before reality collapsed once again.

In every reality, universe or era, Rip Hunter is a man sooner or later condemned to solitude, a lonely hero who guards over a time-space continuum only he and a few others can perceive. Brilliant and inventive, he’s the inventor of tech-based time travel, and he uses his knowledge of the timestream to protect a reality far too often exposed to deadly risks. Charming yet edgy, Hunter is more than determined to risk everything for the accomplishment of his personal crusade (being the preservation of time for the first Hunter or the defeat of the Illuminati for the second), and he uses his remarkable genius, an impressive number of high tech gadgets, a sharp tactical mind and mastership over several forms of unarmed combat to reach his goals. A lone ranger who protects history, the Time Master has saved reality as we know it countless times, modifying events so that nobody even knows he has done something, a hero that succeeds when no one knows he has ever intervened.

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6 Comments

  1. […] to the already impressive roster. In Pilot, the newly formed team finds out that their recruiter Rip Hunter has been disobeying the Time Masters to pursue his mission, and as a result he’s been […]

  2. […] Eve obviously isn’t too happy to be “rescued” by a rogue Time Master such as Rip Hunter, but she eventually helps him and his team with his mission out of gratitude. The character is a […]

  3. […] episode of Legends of Tomorrow, new character to speak about. In Progeny, Rip Hunter brings the team to the future, in order to cripple Vandal Savage‘s forces a few decades […]

  4. […] one…and since the very first episode, Pilot. While recruiting the heroes for his mission, Rip Hunter brings them to his time ship, called the Waverider…and that’s the character […]

  5. […] see that her costume is pretty faithful to the comics. We don’t know if she’ll join Rip Hunter‘s team or if she’ll be just a momentary ally, but here she is. The character already […]

  6. […] 5‘s Force Field Belt, a battle suit that granted him super-strenght, and last but not least Rip Hunter‘s Time Sphere. Finally, he was ready to travel to the past and start his life […]


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