Maxima (comics)

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Maxima Maxima
Maxima as seen in The Death of Superman graphic novel. Art by Dan Jurgens.
Publication information
Publisher DC Comics
First appearance Action Comics #645
(September 1989)
Created by Roger Stern
George Pérez
In story information
Alter ego Maxima of Almerac
Team affiliations Justice League
Superman Revenge Squad
Abilities Super-Strength, Flight, Telekinesis, Mind Control, Optical Force-Beams, Force field-Generation, .

Maxima is a fictional character from the DC Comics Superman titles. She was created by writer Roger Stern and artist George Pérez.[1]



  • 1 Biography
  • 2 Personality and motivations
  • 3 Powers and abilities
  • 4 Other versions
  • 5 Other media
    • 5.1 Superman: The Animated Series (1996-2000)
    • 5.2 Smallville (2001-2009)
  • 6 Notes and references


Oldest child of the Royal family of the planet Almerac, the fiery-tempered Maxima came to Earth in search of a suitable mate, leaving behind Ultraa, her betrothed. She and Superman are genetically compatible; she could give him what no Earth woman could – children. She was infuriated when Superman rejected her offer, saying he had no desire to father despots.[2]

Maxima later found herself reluctantly working with Brainiac who had destroyed Almerac with the Warworld. She turned against him, and helped Earth’s heroes defeat him, subsequently joining a reformed Justice League for her own reasons after the League saved Almerac from Starbreaker. As a Leaguer, she helped in the fight against Doomsday, and when that version of the League disbanded, she became a member of Captain Atom’s Extreme Justice. She considered both Captain Atom and Amazing-Man as potential mates, but neither were interested. During the period of her flirtation with Captain Atom, an angry jilted Ultraa attacked him. Maxima eventually stopped the brawl and sent Ultraa back to Almerac.

She offered herself to Superman again, hoping that her recent good deeds would offset her earlier ruthlessness.[3] Superman, now married to Lois Lane, was even less interested in her proposal than before. Angry and humiliated, she joined the Superman Revenge Squad. She swore that Superman had rejected, humbled and humiliated her for the last time, and threatened that the next time they meet, it would truly be war.[4]

However, in her next appearance, during the build up to the Our Worlds at War crossover, Maxima and the ‘Chosen People of Almerac’, as she phrased it, showed up in Earth’s solar system where they met up with Superman and fellow JLA member, Green Lantern. Superman and Green Lantern were just beginning to investigate the disturbing disappearance of Pluto and the even more distressing engine ion trail associated with Warworld, when they stumbled across Maxima, her people, and the supervillain Massacre.

After a battle full of wounded pride, Maxima eventually conceded her position when Almerac’s rendezvous showed up using a Boom Tube. She explained that she was leading her people to safety from Imperiex, the force that conquered her world. Massacre had seemed to meet his death,[5] however, somehow Maxima came across him and described her association in these words: “Massacre serves only me now.[verification needed] To save her people, she allied herself with Darkseid’s son, Grayven, who was taking them to regions unknown. This was also being undertaken without the knowledge of Darkseid. Maxima left Superman with the following words: “Mark my words, when Imperiex comes for your precious homeworld, you’ll see alliances you’ve never dreamed of.[verification needed]

All that Maxima warned eventually came to fruition as she and a myriad of other characters (both heroes and villains) formed alliances with Earth and Apokolips in an effort to destroy Imperiex.[6]

Maxima ultimately met her demise in a heroic effort to put her ship between the destructive beams of Brainiac 13’s Warworld which would have resulted in the destruction of the entire universe.[7]

Personality and motivations

Overall, portrayal of Maxima varied by writer. In her appearances in the various Superman titles, Maxima was typically depicted as a haughty and shallow individual with only self-centered motivations, lacking any real depth as a character. By contrast, in her appearances in the comic book series Extreme Justice and Steel, Maxima was developed as an individual with a warrior’s sense of honor and a strong countenance of noble pride that had its humorous moments in relation to other characters. This was evident during Extreme Justice #10 and #11, where Maxima hosted the bachelorette party for Captain Atom’s fiance, Plastique, wearing a stylish and elegant “red carpet” dress while everyone else wore jeans to the event that was held in the party room of a humble Tex-Mex restaurant. This occurred again in later issues of that series, where she’s visibly uncomfortable from seeing newly joined members, Zan and Jayna, gorge themselves on jelly donuts, hamburgers, French fries, and other assorted fast foods at a mall food court.

Powers and abilities

As a scion of the Blood Royale of Almerac, Maxima commands a vast array of powers that come from selective breeding and years of gene therapy. In her first face to face encounter with Superman[8] she displayed a high level of psionic powers, such as psychokinesis and seemingly hypnotic mind control. Maxima possesses superhuman strength, enhanced stamina, and massive durability, as well as some degree of superhuman speed.[8] Through skillful application of her Psionic powers Maxima has been shown to emit powerful Optical beams (that can stagger even Superman), and can create nearly impervious forcefields. She is also able to channel her Psionic powers internally to boost her physical strength (to a level approaching Wonder Woman and Superman). In the first battle with Doomsday in Adventures of Superman #498, Maxima is the only one in that incarnation of the Justice League that was able to actually hurt and withstand blows from Doomsday, besides Superman.

Other versions

An alternate history where Superman marries Maxima after Lois dies was presented as an Elseworlds story[9] that was part of the Armageddon 2001 crossover in which Waverider looked at possible futures of DC characters.[9] In this scenario, Superman is overcome with grief from the death of his wife Lois Lane, after their unborn child causes her death from internal bleeding when it kicks in her womb. Apparently, even a half-Kryptonian child was too much for a normal Earth woman to bear. Blaming himself and grief-stricken, Superman exiles himself from Earth once again, and is ready to die in space when he comes across one of the many enemies of Almerac. He is saved by Maxima, who at this time is unwillingly engaged to the Krenon cyborg De’Cine. Following on the advice of her handmaiden Sazu, she pretends to become more tactful and ‘nice’ in order to win Superman’s heart, but in the process, she truly falls in love with him. At the end, she and Superman leave Earth forever to protect it from a potential reprisal from the Krenon Empire after the death of De’Cine. As they leave, Maxima remarks what fine children they would have.

Other media

Superman: The Animated Series (1996-2000)

Maxima from Superman TAS Maxima

Maxima from Superman: The Animated Series.

Maxima appeared in the episode Warrior Queen, voiced by Sharon Lawrence. According to the official episode description, “Maxima, Queen of Almerac, chases Superman as a potential mate. She takes the Man of Steel up to her planet, where, as she prepares to marry him, Superman educates Maxima that a mate isn’t something to take, but a person who is won over and loved.” Maxima is not impressed and literally drags Superman to her planet, only to find herself deposed. Superman helps Maxima regain her throne, and she allows him to return home. Fortunately, whatever disappointment she has is quickly dispelled by the sudden arrival of the destructively rambunctious bounty hunter, Lobo whom she judges with giddy delight as an adequate substitute to woo in her violent way.

Many changes were made to the character in her animated interpretation. Her appearance changed from George Pérez’s exotic beauty to something almost Kirbyesque (sort of a redheaded Big Barda). Her personality became much more bratty. Finally, of her myriad powers, only her strength and durability remained, she was also seen to be capable of metal manipulation (seen when she turned a piece of metal into a sword) and opening teleportational portals with a high-tech bracelet.

De’Cine (voiced by Miguel Ferrer) also changed from an inhuman alien cyborg to an Almeracian courtier.

Smallville (2001-2009)

Maxima will appear in the episode “Instinct” on the CW drama Smallville’s eighth season.[citation needed] She will attempt to kiss Clark Kent, and may use the alias “Melissa.”[citation needed]

Notes and references

  1. ^ First appearance: Action Comics #645 — released September 1989.
  2. ^ Action Comics #652.
  3. ^ Superman: The Wedding Album, Man of Tomorrow #7.
  4. ^ Man of Tomorrow #10.
  5. ^ Superman #106.
  6. ^ Man of Steel #115.
  7. ^ Man of Steel #117.
  8. ^ a b Action Comics #651.
  9. ^ a b Adventures of Superman Annual #3.

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