LeTonya Charles (Cyborgirl)

cyborgirlfilmThe four-part CW crossover was aired last week… and, well, it could have been surely worse, but it could also have been a lot better. Anyway, in the part of Invasion! that aired on Arrow we met a brand new villain, Laura Washington, portrayed by Erica Luttrell: nicknamed Cyber-Woman by Ragman, she’s a former scientist at Van Horn Industries, who started stealing cybernetic components to implant on herself… and among those, there’s obviously the one the team needs to stop the Dominators. Powerful enough to make short work of Wild Dog, she’s however no match for The Flash and Supergirl, who defeat her in a blink. The character, albeit an original one, is nearly identical to another established villain who slightly differs in the name, Cyborgirl, and she’s clearly based on her (maybe, due to the comic series she originally appears in, her real alias was not available for tv… who knows). Anyway, let’s take a look to the original Cyber-Woman, Cyborgirl.

LeTonya Charles was born in Washington, D.C., a girl from the suburbs who had more ambition than wits. When a new, strongly addictive drug named Tar was created (a derivative of Bane‘s Venom), LeTonya was intrigued by its side-effects: the drug drastically augmented the strength and the durability of who made use of it bringing them to superhuman levels, even increasing the size of the druggies turning them into hulking monsters known as Tar-Freaks. Seeking an opportunity to obtain power, LeTonya started using Tar, and when an improved version of the drug, Super-Tar, was produced, she became addicted to that as well. Super-Tar indeed increased strength, durability and aggression even more, but it had a devastating lethal effect on the body, and three usages were more than enough to kill an adult. Unable to restrain herself, LeTonya ended up destroying her body with the cyborgirlcomics1drug, and she brought herself to the verge of death… but she was luckier than most of the other Tar-Freaks, as she had someone who cared for her and could actually do something to help her: her aunt, Sarah Charles. Sarah was a scientist at S.T.A.R. Labs, part of the team who had repaired the heroic Cyborg after he was severely damaged in a battle: wanting to save her niece, Sarah operated on her, replacing the damaged parts of her body with cybernetic implants and managing to save the girl’s life by turning her into another cyborg. Sarah, of course, hoped that her niece would have used this second chance she was given to do something good with her life… but she was tragically wrong, as LeTonya didn’t change simply out of gratitude, quite the opposite, she saw the cybernetic implements as a chance to gain even more money and power than with Tar. Naming herself “Cyborgirl”, she put herself on the market as a super-villain for hire, and she surely didn’t lack job offers.

After some solo (mis)adventures, her first assignment surely was something to be remembered, as she was hired by Queen Clea, the Atlantean ruler of Venturia, to be a part of her team, Villainy, Inc., entrusted with the mission of invading the hidden nation of Skartaris. Along with her teammates (the second Doctor Poison, the giantess Giganta, the three-faced Trinity and the sorceress Jinx) she attacked the magic country of Skartaris, and she proved to be pivotal to the plan, as Trinity used her as a portal to access the mainframe of the capital city Shamballa and start a cyber-attack to overthrow the ruler, Travis Morgan. Trinity, unfortunately, had a plan of her own, and she used Cyborgirl against her will to follow her own agenda (to rewind time, nothing less): ironically, it was the intervention of Wonder Woman, who defeated Villany, Inc. and prevented the downfall of Skartaris, that also saved Cyborgirl, infected by Trinity’s virus. LeTonya, however, didn’t learn the lesson this time either, and as soon as she recovered from the damage she came back in action, joining the Secret Society of Supervillains cyborgirlcomics2led by Lex Luthor. It turned out that Luthor was actually Alexander Luthor Jr., a former interdimensional hero who wanted to manipulate the villains in the team to restore the destroyed multiverse. She joined also the version of the team led by Libra, but also this team disbanded miserably, as Libra was controlled by the New Gods of Apokolips. Despite these bad experiences, nothing seemed to work on Cyborgirl to make her change her ways… until the government announced that they would have exiled all supervillains on Earth to a planet in another galaxy, called Salvation. Simply terrified by the perspective, Cyborgirl surrendered to the Justice League of America, being imprisoned, but avoiding to be sent away. As soon as the emergency subsided, however, she broke free and started looking for a job again: a new team, the Cyborg Revenge Squad, was just waiting for her…

LeTonya Charles is a greedy and ambitious young woman, an incorrigible criminal who always seeks her personal gain over everything else, oblivious to the people caring about her and even of the risks. As Cyborgirl, her cybernetic implants grant her superhuman strength, speed, durability, reflexes and stamina, her senses are enhanced, she can interface with any digital and electronic device or system, and she possesses a variety of implanted weapons including plasma cannons, electromagnetic waves emitters, laser guns and more. Cyborgirl uses a power she was given to have her life saved to endanger the life of others, using her talents to steal, rob and kill: unworthy of her skills, incapable of learning from her previous experiences, she’s a criminal when she had infinite chances to be something more… quite a waste.


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