Real Name: Dinah Lance
Voiced by Morena Baccarin
The daughter of Dinah Drake—the first woman to don the leather and fishnets of Black Canary—Dinah Lance adopted her mother's costumed identity following her retirement. Trained by Ted Grant—also known as the masked vigilante Wildcat—she grew to become his most skilled student, using a mixture of martial arts and boxing to take on any opponent. Unlike her mother, however, Dinah possesses the mutant ability to project ultrasonic blasts from her vocal chords; this "canary cry" can be used to destroy buildings and stop adversaries in their tracks, which is a valuable asset if her hand-to-hand skills are useless against a more powerful opponent.
Having joined the Justice League during their recent reformation, Black Canary now finds herself fighting crime on a global scale, which is a new plateau for the street vigilante. However, she has excelled in her new role as global protector, and remains one of the League's most valued members, either solo or with her new boyfriend Green Arrow.
Paul Dini on an aborted Black Canary appearance on BTAS (circa 1998): “The FOX network, on the assumption that kids won’t watch a kid’s show unless kids are in it, soon began insisting that Robin be prominently featured in every episode. When FOX changed to title from Batman: the Animated Series to The Adventures of Batman and Robin, they laid down the law—no story premise was to be considered unless it was either a Robin story or one in which the Boy Wonder played a key role. […] A potentially intriguing Catwoman / Black Canary team-up was interrupted in mid-pitch to the network by their demand, ‘Where’s Robin?’ When the writers asked if they could omit Robin from just this one episode, FOX obliged by omitting the entire story (courtesy of Batman: Animated).”
Bruce Timm on Black Canary: “The ‘Black Canary hooker’ first appeared in an episode of The New Batman Adventures [‘The Ultimate Thrill’]. Batman and Batgirl are on the phone discussing a case, Batman says, ‘Are you sure your sources are good?’ [and] Batgirl says, ‘Depends on your definition of good’ as we pan to two sulky prostitutes. Darwyn Cooke boarded the scene, thought it’d be funny if one of the hookers looked kinda like Black Canary. Shane Glines did the model based on Darwyn Cooke’s board sketch.
“Cut to several years later: I’m getting ready to design Black Canary for JLU, suddenly I remember the old Black Canary hooker design, dig it up, and, damn, it’s still pretty damn good. Swap the mini-skirt for a one-piece, trade in pumps for cuffed boots, [and] voila, one less character to design from scratch.
“And for the continuity-minded out there, no, Dinah doesn’t have any street-walkin’ skeletons in her closet. [I] figure Black Canary was already around as a superhero in the TNBA days, [and] the hooker based her look on Black Canary’s. Yeah, that kinda works (courtesy of DrawingBoard.org).”
Bruce Timm on Black Canary’s famed fishnet stockings: “Sadly, no fishnets—I’m afraid someone would have to spend a fortune creating a special ‘mapping’ CG program for it to be done adequately in animation. Take my word for it, they’re hard enough to draw in a still image! The grayish, ‘nylon’ color was the best compromise we could come up with (courtesy of Toon Zone).”
Black Canary Image #2 (Unused STAS Design) | Black Canary Image #2 | Black Canary Image #3
Black Canary Image #4 | Black Canary Image #5 | Black Canary Image #6
Black Canary and Catwoman Image | Birds of Prey Image
Commentary coming soon!
Images courtesy of Toon Zone, The Bruce Timm Gallery, timmfans, Comic Art Fans, and The World's Finest.
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