Tis the season for more robotic and cyborg characters! This week we get one of the most popular characters that I think a lot of folks know from the Teen Titan cartoons. He’s part man, part machine, all hero, it’s Cyborg! How does someone get to have all those technological wonders grafted to themselves? Let’s find out!
Born to Silas and Elinor Stone, young Victor’s parents saw him more as a test subject than as a child. Conducting experiments on their own son they increased his intelligence to genius levels. Victor would be put off by this and rebel by befriending Ron Evers, a young man known for getting in trouble. While Victor enjoyed breaking away from his parents he didn’t much care for Ron’s trouble making and more violent ideas. Athletics would prove another rebellious act against his parents and one he thoroughly enjoyed and excelled at.
During a visit at his parents’ workplace of S.T.A.R. Labs, their device that opened a portal to another dimension exploded. This explosion would kill Elinore and nearly took Victor with it if his father wasn’t able to keep what little was left of his body alive. Once again, Victor was the experiment of his parent by becoming the test subject of many cybernetic implants to keep him alive. Waking to what felt like a nightmare, Victor now had a body that was mostly mechanical instead of organic with most of his face gone as well.
To make matters worse, his favorite outlet of sports is taken away due to the advantage his new prosthetics give him. Even though he feels disconnected from humanity, hearing that his former friend Ron has taking to domestic terrorism causes Victor to utilize his new abilities to stop Ron from attacking the U.N Headquarters. This garners him publicity as a hero and gains him the attention of the Teen Titans. The teams welcomes him and he feels connected to these others who are sometimes not quite so human either and that’s not just okay but loved.
Victor was older than many of his fellow teammates and often took on a mentor relationship with them. Unfortunately this protective mentality would get Victor blown apart and put back together many times over and over. This causes a disconnect within Victor again and he starts to find solace in being more machine than human. This would put the world in danger when an alien technology named Technis arrives and uses Cyborg as an entry point to attempt to take over the Earth. Assimilating with Technis, Victor would become Cyberion, aiding in their cause of universal domination. Beast Boy, Victor’s best friend, would see this and be shattered at seeing what his friend had become and left behind.
When Technis is finally defeated, Victor is separated and left with the traumatic experience of feeling Technis die. Now with no friends or family, Victor would fall into the remains of the Technis programming and start growing to be a threat to many planets. No longer really in control, his programming would begin abducting former and current Teen Titans to try and bring his friends back together. Meanwhile many super teams were working together to fight off the Cyberion that Victor had become. Beast Boy is able to appeal to what little is left of Cyberion to have Victor aide them as much as possible, since all he can do is free them, they realize how little of Victor is really doing all this. Raven is able to find Victor’s soul and reunite with his computer mainframe but the soul rejected this corrupted machine. They were able to find him an Omegadrive suit, a golden shapeshifting metal body that allowed Victor a new lease on life.
This new body allowed Victor to look completely human and transform into the more traditional look of his old prosthetics even though his entire body was actually machine. He would end up in a merging with the hero Firestorm to fight off a threat but the battle would damage him and he’d be rebuilt over the course of the year by Teen Titans allies, Marvin and Wendy. He’d awaken to a whole new team and take on his role of mentor yet again. He would learn that while he was being repaired, he still served as someone to talk to and a shoulder to cry on. Even when not conscious, Victor would still be helping the Teen Titans as best he could. He took his mentor role as more of a home base operator instead of going in the field.
Now that he was no longer a field operative for the Teen Titans the Justice League of America invited him to join them. He was with them for a short time but then returned to the Titans to create Titans East. This team would not last and he’d return to the Teen Titans as an advisor. When the Teen Titans fell apart yet again, he’d join back up with the Justice League and use his skills to help rebuild the Red Tornado.
Cyborg in the cartoons shows have been my favorite interpretations of Cyborg since he has such a positive disposition. There’s going to be a Cyborg movie being made in the coming years. I hope we get the fun-loving Cyborg of these cartoons but who knows what kind of interpretation we’ll get.
DC Comics Presents #26