Turtle (comics)

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The Turtle
Publication information
Publisher DC Comics
First appearance All Flash #21 (December 1945)
Created by Gardner Fox
Martin Naydel
In-story information
Team affiliations Secret Society of Super Villains

Turtle is the name of two fictional supervillains appearing in American comic books published by DC Comics, who were primary enemies of Flash.

Publication history

The first Turtle appears in All Flash #21 and was created by Gardner Fox and Martin Naydel.

The second Turtle appears in Showcase #4 and was created by Robert Kanigher and Carmine Infantino.

Fictional character biography

Turtle (Golden Age)

The original Turtle was a 1940s villain who used tricks of slowness in battle with the Golden Age Flash (Jay Garrick). His main weapon was slow, deliberate planning. After a few clashes with the Flash, the Turtle faded from the public scene.[1]

Years later, the Turtle Man carried on his legacy. After the debut of the third Flash (Wally West) in recent years, the original Turtle returned, now with the younger Turtle Man as his henchman, to take over Keystone City from underground. A final clash with Wally and his allies resulted in the Turtle destroying his own headquarters, and apparently himself with it.[2]

Turtle Man (Silver Age)

The Turtle Man (sometimes calling himself simply the Turtle) was the first gimmicked rogue fought by the second Flash (Barry Allen) and appeared in Central City shortly after Barry's debut as Flash. Originally using his natural slowness as a weapon, such as returning to rob a bank vault later to place people off guard, this Turtle Man was also a scientific genius (and independently wealthy) who created fantastic devices based on slowness. After robbing the bank he painted his shadow on the wall, fooling the Flash into crashing into it. In his first appearance he was captured by the Flash while trying to escape via boat and arrested. This is apparently true both Pre- and Post-Crisis. Turtle Man only had a handful of battles with the second Flash. In more recent years, the original Turtle from the 1940s returned and met his "successor". Impressed with the latter's scientific talent, the first Turtle allied himself with him in an attempt to take over Keystone City. A lab accident seriously crippled the Turtle Man during this time. After the third Flash (Wally West) and his allies had found the Turtle's underground headquarters, the original Turtle seemingly killed himself while the younger Turtle Man was taken into custody.[2]

Later, the Turtle Man reappeared again, seemingly cured from his severe injuries, and having developed the ability to 'steal' speed, slowing others around him to a crawl no matter how fast they were moving.

During the Infinite Crisis, Turtle Man was part of the Secret Society of Super Villains led by Alexander Luthor, Jr. (posing as Lex Luthor), using his speed-stealing abilities to negate the power of speedsters and thus make it harder for the heroes to track the Society.[3]

DC Universe

In Scott Snyder’s “Justice League” Series, the Turtle is revised as believing in a opposing energy to the Speed Force, known as the “Still Force”. Each time he accessed this power, it aged him. Now a hatchling (described as “The Fourth Generation of his line”), he is finally attuned to the Still Force, and grants Gorilla Grodd (now a member of Luthor’s Legion of Doom) total control of it to combat the Flash. [4]

Powers and abilities

Turtle is a good criminal strategist.

Turtle Man wears a device that enables him to project a forcefield which can stop bullets. His shell is also a body armor which can expand to cover his head and also has some jets in them. Turtle Man also has a ray device that he uses to make people move slower as well as a laser that causes the optic nerves of a person to see everything moving faster than them.

Other characters named Turtle

There had been other villains who called themselves Turtle:

In other media


  • Turtle appeared in the Justice League Unlimited episode "Flash and Substance." His statue made a cameo in the Flash Museum. Turtle was also seen in the bar where Flash's rogues gallery hang out.
  • Turtle appears in the 10th episode of the second season of The Flash, portrayed by Aaron Douglas.[7] This version is a meta-human named Russell Glosson who can drain the potential kinetic energy from his immediate surroundings and all those around him, sapping their speed as well as slowing down their awareness that time is passing while he moves at normal speeds. After his wife attempted to leave him, he uses his abilities to steal rare valuables with significant emotional value to the owner, "reasoning" that people do not truly appreciate the value of their things. After witnessing Flash rescue his girlfriend Patty Spivot from danger during a slow-motion escape – the Flash's speed allowing him to remain aware and to move while the Turtle employs his powers, but only with great effort – he chooses her as his next "valuable treasure" to steal. After a difficult struggle, Flash incapacitates Turtle at an archive where Glosson's ex-wife worked before he killed her, and the criminal is imprisoned in the particle accelerator in S.T.A.R. Labs. Turtle is then secretly killed by the Earth-2 Harrison Wells, who was attempting to steal Flash's abilities by analyzing the Turtle's brain tissue.


  1. ^ All-Flash #21
  2. ^ a b Showcase #4
  3. ^ Flash Vol. 2 #219. DC Comics.
  4. ^ Justice League Vol. 2 #4 (July 2018) DC Comics.
  5. ^ Star-Spangled Comics #17. DC Comics.
  6. ^ Adventure Comics #122. DC Comics.
  7. ^ Abrams, Natalie (January 11, 2016). "The Flash casts Battlestar Galactica alum Aaron Douglas as The Turtle". Entertainment Weekly.

External links

  • Turtle at DC Comics Wiki
  • Turtle Man at DC Comics Wiki
  • Turtle at Comic Vine
  • Turtle Man at DC Comics Wiki
  • Hyperborea entry for the Turtle
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