Triumph is a fictional character, a former superhero in the DC Comics universe who first appeared in Justice League America #92 (September 1994), and was created by Brian Augustyn, Mark Waid and Howard Porter, though the character is primarily associated with writer Christopher Priest. He is not to be confused with fellow DC Comics property, the Golden Age hero Captain Triumph.

Via a retcon in a three part story running through Justice League America #92-94, he was revealed to have been a founding member of the Justice League, serving as their leader. On his first mission with the fledgling Justice League, Triumph seemingly “saved the world”, but was teleported into a dimensional limbo that also affected the timestream, resulting in no one having any memory of him. He also starred in a significant portion of the Justice League Task Force comic (issues #0 and 16-37).

The character Triumph (real name: William MacIntyre, sometimes spelled William McIntyre) was portrayed as a hot-headed, arrogant, and self-righteous individual who felt he was “denied his destiny” to become one of Earth’s greatest heroes. When he first returned from the dimensional limbo to the modern era, Triumph’s meeting with Justice League International quickly devolved into a violent confrontation. His attitude would ultimately result in his expulsion from the Justice League Task Force. Alternatively, it could be seen that J’onn fired Triumph because of Triumph regularly not consulting J’onn. Dissatisfied with the infrequency of JLTF missions, he founded a second team to fight perpetrators of violent crime. In JLTF #30, Triumph receives a wishing candle from Neron, which The Ray and Gypsy unwittingly light in JLTF #35. Writer Christopher Priest has stated that this lighting gave Triumph back his lost decade of life and that his soul now belongs to Neron, explaining his future appearances as an evil character.

Fall from Grace

Later during DC’s 1990s resurrection of the JLA ongoing series, Triumph later came under the influence of a malign 5th dimensional imp named Lkz similar to the one possessed by golden age Justice Society member Johnny Thunder. Triumph mind-controlled his former Justice League Task Force teammates Gypsy and The Ray, striking at the newly reformed JLA. The combined forces of the JSA and JLA were required to stop the rampaging Thunderbolt and subdue Triumph.

At the end of this arc, the Spectre transformed Triumph into ice and prepared to smash him with a hammer, but was stopped by a compassionate plea by the angel Zauriel.

His ice form was stored in the Justice League headquarters. Grant Morrison, the writer of this story, later destroyed the headquarters, but forgot to remove Triumph, presumably killing him in the process.

Love Life

Christopher Priest has since revealed[1] that Triumph was written as gay, though it was never officially stated in comics because he “didn’t have an appropriate storyline to deal sensitively with that issue, but that was my subtext for his emotional center: how out of place and out of sync Triumph was with the DC Universe.”

However, Triumph’s co-creator Bryan Augustyn wrote a story in DC’s Showcase series about Triumph’s girlfriend, a fashion designer named Melissa. Likewise, Priest seemed to be building up a chemistry between Triumph’s Justice League Task Force teammate Gypsy and the magnetic hero, culminating in a kiss.[2] Additionally, Triumph was rather forcefully rejected by Fire (Beatriz DaCosta) after making romantic advances.[3]

Whatever the case, Triumph’s love life remains a mystery for future writers to solve.


Though not fully elaborated, Triumph’s powers were said to be control over the electromagetic spectrum. This power gives Triumph what he calls 360 degree hyper senses or what could be described as a form of electromagnetic psychometry which allowed him to perceive and interpret in all probability the entire electromagnetic spectrum. With this unique sensory ability Triumph could ‘hear’ TV and radio signals and decode satellite transmissions. Triumph also displayed advanced electromagnetic energy manipulation and it was even remarked by Superman that he could kill Superman himself by siphoning, or cutting off the solar energy from his cells to the rest of his body.

Triumph can bend the electromagnetic energy around him for offensive purposes. For instance, he can store energy in his hands and send it through metallic wiring as a powerful electric current. He can project powerful electric blasts from his eyes capable of melting thick plastic or rubber objects, or even shred tough steel alloys like confetti.

Finally, he possesses vast superhuman strength, sufficient to defeat Steel with no apparent effort, and to fight Superman hand-to-hand.

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