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Lori Lemaris
Lori Lemaris (Action Comics 310)
Information
Real name: Lori Lemaris
Species: Merfolk
Mermaid
Atlantean
Homeworld: Earth
Universe: Earth-One
Relatives: Britt Lemaris (father)
Omra Lemaris (mother)
Lenora Lemaris (sister)[1]
Ronal (husband)[2]
Two Unnamed Children[3]
Base: Tritonis, Atlantis
Lori Lemaris (Superman 129)
Lori Lemaris (Action Comics 269)
Lori's Children (Superman's Girl Friend Lois Lane) 1

The lovely brown-haired Atlantean mermaid from the city of Tritonis (on the continent of Atlantis),[4] who, prior to her marriage to the extraterrestrial merman surgeon Ronal, was one of Superman's love interests and remained one of the Man of Steel's most trusted friends. Lori had two children with Ronal.[5]

Recalling her wistfully, Clark Kent describes her as the kind of girl he's always dreamed of marrying – a girl of rare beauty and courage with eyes as blue and mysterious as the sea and a voiced tinged with the slightest touch of a foreign accent.[6]

As a Mermaid (a fish-tailed Atlantean), she is incapable of walking on land. And so, Lori Lemaris has customarily employed a wheelchair during her brief sojourns in the surface world, thus concealing her mermaid tail beneath a blanket so as not to arouse undue attention.

Lori Lemaris' status among her fellow Atlanteans is not entirely certain. Several texts portray her as an ordinary Atlantean citizen. At least one text, however, describes her as Atlantis' queen[7] and two others describe her as Atlantis' Ruler.[8]


Background Information

On the parallel-universe of Earth-One, Lori Lemaris is a descendant of Nar Lemaris, the Atlantean scientist who performed the miraculous biological conversion that transformed the Atlanean people (from the city of Tritonis) into a population of mer-people.[9]

As a young child, Lori was prone to lying and would also develop a fascination with the surface world and wish to be able to live on the surface. To this end, she tricked her new friend, Superboy into thinking that she was 2000 years old, a lie that the Boy of Steel would see through. He would trick her on his own, by telling her he was developing a device to allow her to breathe on the surface. In reality, Superboy would create a device that would prevent Lori from lying. In the end, Lori's father Britt would fear for the surface world's discovery of Atlantis and erase the memories of Superboy, Lana Lang, and Lori, to maintain the secret of Atlantis' true existence.[10]

Sometime later, through unexplained reasons, Lori would end up on an island caught in a space time warp where various victims of plane crashes and ship wrecks live in peace. There she would once again meet Superboy, this time in his civilian identity of Clark Kent.[11]

When Lori was older, she begin posing as a crippled woman living on the surface, being able to live outside of water by nightly sleeps in salt water. She began this ruse, because once every hundred years, an Atlantean is chosen to visit the surface world to learn of the surface people's progress during the preceding century. It was during her visit, that Lori Lemaris attended Metropolis University at the exact same time that Clark Kent was a senior there. Kent dated her steadily during this period, captivated by her courage and haunting beauty, falling, day by day, ever more hopelessly in love with her.[12] Clark decides to give up being Superman to marry her. He revealed to Lori his secret identity. Lori, however, tells Clark that she can’t marry him, and that she had to return to her native country. Heartbroken, and curious as to why Lori had to return home every night at the same time, he investigates and discovers Lori's mermaid secret. Lori, in turn, revealed that she knew that he was really Superman all along, because of her telepathic powers, but promised to keep the knowledge of his identity a secret. Yet, because they are both from different worlds – a man and a mermaid, Lori believes that they could never be wed and that her first duty was to return to her people. After a parting kiss underwater, the two bid farewell.[13]

However, this would not be the last time their past romance would affect their lives. Not quite a year later, Clark Kent while on assignment for the Daily Planet, overhears fishermen talking about a mermaid encounter. Curious to know if it's his old college sweet heart, he decides to investigate. He finds her and asks her to reconsider his marriage proposal. She agrees to go out on a date with him one more time to make up her mind. After they go to dinner and the Opera and then decide to head back to the ocean to play. Unfortunately, Lori would be injured by a fisherman, leading to a full out paralysis. In order to cure his love, Superman would take her to Atlantis, then travel across the universe to find a doctor that would be able to heal her. He would find the alien merman named Ronal, who would cure Lori. However in the process the two mer-people would fall in love. Superman, while heartbroken, would accept their romance and return to the surface. The next day, as Clark Kent he asks Lois Lane out on a date.[14] Although no longer lovers, Superman and Lori would remain friends.

Having found true love with Ronal, Lori would then attempt to try the first of many attempts to set Superman up with his current love Lois Lane (perhaps out of some guilt wanting to ensure Clark is happy). Her first attempt to make Superman propose to Lois, takes place when Perry White sends Lois and Clark on an undersea assignment. But Clark is not a susceptible as Lori had hoped. After a few more unsuccessful attempts, Clark realizes what Lori was doing, and meets with her. He tells her to stop meddling in his romantic life and let him pick his own wife.[15] This doesn’t deter Lori. She would meddle again in Clark’s life, being unsuccessful again.[16]

Being a friend of the Superman Family, Lori would seek the aid of Superman's cousin Supergirl to help destroy weapons that threatened to destroy Atlantis. Through the course of this adventure Supergirl would fall in love with the merboy Jerro but become embarrassed when she realized her romantic thoughts were public knowledge among Lori's people due to their natural telepathic abilities.[17]

Lori would participate in a hoax attack on Atlantis, with Superman posing as a villain named Mero, as part of Supergirl's surprise 16th birthday party.[18]

When Mr. Mxyzptlk would use his powers to transform Jimmy Olsen into a wolf-man, Lori would be one of the women that Superman would have kiss Jimmy in the hopes of breaking the curse.[19]

Shortly thereafter, when Supergirl would be inducted into the Legion of Super-Heroes from the 30th century, she would ask Lori and Jerro to help test out a force-field device they gave her as a gift to see if it blocked out Kryptonite radiation. To this end, Lori and Jerro would find a chunk of Kryptonite and toss it into the ocean for Supergirl to test out her devices.[20]

When Lori reached out to Superman, asking him to travel back in time to prevent the sinking of Atlantis, Superman agreed, but knew that he would be unable to change history. This little jaunt through time, would however lead Superman to saving the lives of his younger self and parents in a parallel universe during the destruction of Krypton.[21]

Over the years, Lori (occasionally aided by her husband, Ronal) as an ally of the Superman family, would have many adventures, with Supergirl,[22] Jimmy Olsen,[23] Superman,[24] Lois Lane,[25] and Lana Lang.[26]

Lori had the people of Atlantis construct a "Super mergirl" museum in her honor of Supergirl when Superman revealed her to the world.[27]

After aiding Supergirl in capturing Lex Luthor,[28] Lori would find herself exiled to the Phantom Zone along with Lois Lane. Meanwhile, Lana Lang has been influenced by a mood altering broach. Superman would free Lana from its control and rescue both Lori and Lois from the Zone.[29]

Lori would also time-travel on occasion, accompanying Supergirl to the 30th century to attend the funeral of Lightning Lad who at the time was seemingly killed battling Zaryan the Conqueror.[30] Returning to her own era, Lori would give Lois Lane a tour of Atlantis.. During the tour, Lois would be briefly transported back in time, just before Atlantis sank beneath the ocean. After Lois's return Lori would alleviate Lois's concerns that she was responsible for the catastrophe.[31]

When Superman is stricken with amnesia and rendered powerless by Red Kryptonite he would take on the identity of ‘Jack White.’ Dumped into the ocean by a jealous rival for Sally Selwyn's love, ‘White’ would be rescued by Aquaman who would bring the Man of Steel to Lori to be nursed back to health.[32]

When Superman is seemingly killed, by Luthor and Brainiac, Lori would mourn Superman's supposed death.[33]

Civil War has broken out on the continent of Atlantis! The nations of Tritonis and Poseidonis have come to the brink of war. Lori risks coming to the surface again to enlist Superman's help. The Man of Steel and Aquaman soon find out that Lori and her people were under the control of a giant jelly fish owned by Ocean Master. The two heroes defeat Ocean Master and the creature, freeing Lori and the others.[34]

After Lori’s clashes with Dr. Zodiac who stole seven mystical coins from Atlantis, she was aided by Superman and Batman who ensured their safe return.[35]

Shortly before the impending Crisis, Lori would help alleviate Superman’s concern’s after he dreams that mankind has destroyed the world.[36]

July 1985 – The skies overhead have turned red. Weather around the world is out of whack. All the signs point to the coming of Armageddon. Deep beneath the ocean, Atlantis is experiencing ecological disasters. Lori is on hand, defending her homeland.[37]

When the final five parallel worlds (Earth’s One, Two, Four, S and X) were shunted in the Netherverse that was created by the Monitor, Lori would be among the many heroes dispatched to witness the slowly merging realities. On board the Monitor's Satellite, she would pledge herself to Harbinger and Alexander Luthor Jr. (of Earth-Three) to saving the remaining multiverse alongside Aqualad, and Aquagirl.[38]

Attempting to return to her home kingdom, Lori would be shocked to find that the time-warping new-reality of a partially merged Earth-One and Two, has caused the Atlantis she knew to be replaced with ancient Atlantis of Arion's time – above the waves. Below the surface, the Atlantean cities of Tritonis and Poseidonis have been transplanted to what appears to be the new Earth of the future. She is with Aqualad, Tula (aka Aquagirl) and Aquaman who is looking for Mera. Aquaman speeds away continuing his quest. They are all observed from the shadows by an occasional ally of Aquaman, Dolphin (an underwater super-powered girl with extra-terrestrial origins) who follows stealthily from behind.[39] The aquatic based heroes converge on the Atlantis that is above the waves.[40]

A short time later, Lori would have the painful duty of telling Aqualad that Tula had died after the two had battled Chemo.[41]

Following the merger of the remaining multiverse into one universe (aka the New Earth), Lori , Aquaman, Garth, and Mera defend Atlantis from the Anti-Monitor's final attack. While protecting Mera from the Anti-Monitor's shadow creatures, Lori would be killed.[42]

As the universe settles into itself and the battle is won against the Anti-Monitor, in Atlantis, Aquaman, Mera and Aqualad mourned the loss of Lori Lemaris and Tula.[43]


Powers and Abilities

Powers

  • Atlantean Physiology: Being a mermaid, Lori can develop human legs on land and the lower half of a fish when in water. She can swim at incredible speeds and can withstand the pressure of the ocean at great depths.
  • Telepathy: Lori Lemaris' extraordinary mental powers also enable her to make sea creatures obey her telepathic commands or to tune in on the thoughts of criminals imprisoned in the Phantom Zone.
  • Mind Reading: Like many Atlanteans, Lori Lemaris has mastered the art of reading minds and of communicating telepathically. She can perform these feats over very long distances, thus enabling her to read Superman's thoughts or summon him by telepathy even while she is in Atlantis and he is in Metropolis, a great distance away. It was by reading Clark Kent's mind that Lori first discovered that Clark Kent is Superman.


Abilities


Weaknesses

  • Asphyxiation: Although Lori Lemaris, like other Atlanteans, is physically capable of surviving out of water, to remain in perfect health her body must be immersed in salt water at least ten hours a day.


Notes

  • Lori Lemaris was originally introduced in Earth-One continuity in Superman, #129 (May, 1959).
  • This version of Lori Lemari, including all history and corresponding appearances, was erased from existence following the collapse of the original Multiverse in the 1985–86 Crisis on Infinite Earths limited series.


Trivia

Lori had a brief romantic relationship with Clark Kent. Like Clark's other girlfriends, Lois Lane and Lana Lang, she too bears the "double L" initials.


Reference

  1. Lenora is revealed in Action Comics, #284/2 (January 1962).
  2. As revealed in Superman, #135/2 (February 1960).
  3. As revealed in Superman's Girl Friend Lois Lane #55/2 (February 1965).
  4. As revealed in DC Comics Presents, #5 (January 1979).
  5. As revealed in Superman's Girl Friend Lois Lane #55/2 (February 1965).
  6. As revealed in Superman,129/3 (May 1959).
  7. As revealed in Superman, #156 (October 1962).
  8. As revealed in Superman, #154/1 (July 1962) and Action Comics, #300 (May 1963).
  9. As revealed in Adventure Comics, #280 (January 1961). Although the story says that it was Atlanteans who were transformed, by implication from later stories, we know that that it was specifically those from the city of Tritonis located on the continent of Atlantis.
  10. As revealed in Adventure Comics, #280 (January, 1961).
  11. As revealed in Superman: The Secret Years, #2 (March 1985).
  12. As revealed in Superman, #129/3 (May 1959) and Superman: The Secret Years, #2 (March 1985).
  13. As revealed in Superman, #129/3 (May 1959) and Superman: The Secret Years, #3 (April 1985). See also: The Great Superman Book: The Complete Encyclopedia of the Folk Hero of America! (October, 1978).
  14. As revealed in Superman, #135/2 (February 1960).
  15. As revealed in Superman, #138/3 (July 1960).
  16. As revealed in Superman, #139/1 (August 1960).
  17. As revealed in Action Comics, #269/2 (October 1960).
  18. As revealed in Action Comics, #270/2 (November 1960).
  19. As revealed in Superman's Pal Jimmy Olsen, #52/3 (April 1961).
  20. As revealed in Action Comics, #276/2 (May 1961).
  21. As revealed in Superman, #146/2 (July 1961).
  22. As revealed in Action Comics, #278/2 (July 1961); #284/2 (January 1962); #290/2 (July 1962); #297/2 (February 1963); #298/2 (March 1963); #304/2 (January 1963); #302/2 (July 1963); #303/2 (August 1963); #307/2 (December 1963); #312/2 (May 1964); #319/2 (December 1964); and #325/2 (June 1965).
  23. As revealed in Superman's Pal Jimmy Olsen, #53/2 (June 1961); #55 (September 1961); #63 (September 1962); #70/3 (July 1963); and #81 (December 1964).
  24. As revealed in Superman,#148/3 (October 1961); #154 (July 1962); #154/2 (July 1962); #156 (October 1962); #158 (January 1963); #157/2 (November 1962); Action Comics, #295 (December 1962); #310 (March 1964); #309 (February 1964); #312 (May 1964); #313 (June 1964); #365 (July 1968) and #366 (August 1968).
  25. As revealed in Superman's Girl Friend, Lois Lane, #28 (October, 1961); #31/2 (February 1962); #44 (October 1963); and 56/2 (April 1965).
  26. As revealed in Superman, #204 (February 1968).
  27. As revealed in Action Comics, #285 (February 1962).
  28. As revealed in Action Comics, #286 (March 1962).
  29. As revealed in Superman's Girl Friend Lois Lane, #33 (May 1962).
  30. As revealed in Adventure Comics #304/2 (January 1963).
  31. As revealed in Superman's Girl Friend Lois Lane, #42 (July 1963).
  32. As revealed in Superman, #165/2 (November 1963).
  33. As revealed in DC Special Series, #5 (November, 1977).
  34. As revealed in DC Comics Presents, #5 (January 1979).
  35. As revealed by World's Finest Comics #268 (April/May 1981).
  36. As revealed in Superman, #408 (June 1985).
  37. As revealed in Crisis on Infinite Earths, #4 (July 1985).
  38. As revealed in Crisis on Infinite Earths, #5 (August 1985).
  39. As revealed in Crisis on Infinite Earths, #6 (September 1985).
  40. As revealed in Crisis on Infinite Earths, #7 (October 1985).
  41. As revealed in Crisis on Infinite Earths, #10 (January 1986).
  42. As revealed in Crisis on Infinite Earths, #12 (March 1986).
  43. As revealed in Crisis on Infinite Earths, #12 (March, 1986).
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