Terry McGinnis is the protagonist of the television series Batman Beyond.
During encounters with the Justice League, both hostile and friendly, Amanda Waller developed a great admiration for Batman and came to believe that someone like him would always be needed. As she watched Batman age, she realized he wouldn't be around forever and the Dark Knight would have to retire or someone would finally kill him. Drawing on her old Cadmus contacts, Waller devised a scheme to give Batman a genetic "son" who would likewise be compelled to take up a life as his successor. After obtaining a sample of Batman's DNA, a young couple was found that were almost identical psychological matches to Batman's father and mother: Warren and Mary McGinnis. During an apparent routine flu inoculation, Warren was administered a nanotech solution that over-wrote his reproductive DNA with Batman's. A year later, Terry McGinnis was born as a genetic son of Mary and Bruce Wayne.
Knowing that genetics were not the only factor in creating Batman, Waller later hired an assassin to murder Terry's parents at the same age and under very similar circumstances as his predecessor to try to recreate these conditions. The hired assassin, knowing what the murders had done to Batman and realized that she would be dishonoring everything he stood for, refused to subject another child to the same horrors. When Waller realized she had crossed a line, she scrapped the project.
Shortly after the failed assassination, Warren and Mary had another son, Matt.
Terry was once a member of a street gang run by Charlie "Big Time" Bigelow, and had his fair share of run-ins with the Gotham Police Department in his early teens, even serving a three-month stint in juvenile hall.
As he returned to high school, however, he shed some of his worst habits and acquired a girlfriend, Dana Tan. Terry still had trouble relating to his father, Warren McGinnis, who accused him of being irresponsible. On what proved to be the last night of Warren's life, Terry stormed out of the house after an argument.
While defending Dana from another street gang, the Jokerz, Terry found himself being chased by them to the outskirts of Gotham City. He fled onto the grounds of Wayne Manor, where an aged Bruce Wayne appeared and assisted him in defeating the Jokerz. The strain of the fight placed substantial stress on Bruce's heart, and he collapsed. Terry helped Bruce into the mansion and, in the process, stumbled upon the entrance to the Batcave.
Bruce kicked him out, but Terry returned home to find it covered in Jokerz graffiti, and discovered his father had been murdered. Grief-stricken, Terry looked through his father's belongings and found a disk that Warren had taken from his employer, Derek Powers, the new head of Wayne-Powers. Realizing there was more to his father's death than first appeared, Terry rushed back to Wayne Manor and demanded to be let in.
As Bruce examined the disk in the Batcave, Terry noticed the latest-generation Batsuit Wayne had used before retiring. The disk revealed that Powers was making a deadly nerve gas to sell to the government of Kaznia, but Bruce refused to get involved and ordered Terry to go to the police. On the way, Terry encountered Powers himself, who knew the disk had to be somewhere and it was taken. Terry managed to escape from him, however, and ran off.
Returning to Wayne Manor, he tied up Ace and stole the Batsuit. When Bruce discovered the theft, he admonished Terry through the suit's communicator, but Terry was adamant on confronting Powers. Bruce retaliated by shutting the suit down, in the middle of a confrontation with Powers' security guards. Terry pleaded with Bruce for a chance to prove himself, and persuaded Wayne to re-activate the suit and let him carry on as Batman for the time being. Bruce's decision resulted in the sabotage of Powers' operation; the stores of the chemical weapon were lost in the Gotham River, along with Mr. Fixx, Powers' henchman, whom Terry discovered had murdered Warren. Powers himself was inadvertently exposed to his own weapon, and the radiation therapy necessary to save his life mutated him into the villain Blight.
Convinced that there was still a need for a Batman, Bruce visited Terry and his mother early one morning at their home and under the pretext of paying back a previous act of kindness hired Terry as his personal assistant. Terry ran various errands and took care of various tasks for Bruce Wayne in his civilian identity. In part, this was a cover for secretly training him as Gotham's new Dark Knight. Terry's job also allowed him to earn much needed money to help support his family since his father's death.
Crime fighting CareerEdit
Terry quickly found himself walking in the footsteps of his mentor in many ways. Like Bruce, he amassed his own rogue's gallery of villains, including Derek Powers' mutated form Blight, the assassin Curaré, the shape-changing Inque, sound engineer Shriek, the telekentic high school nerd Willie Watt, former psychologist Spellbinder, and the Royal Flush Gang. At one time, Terry also found himself taking after his mentor in getting entangled without meaning to with a woman who was in reality a criminal — Melanie Walker. After this encounter, Bruce related by telling Terry of his own complicated relationship with Selina Kyle.
Terry also gained a collection of allies. These included Barbara Gordon, the first Batgirl and now the Commissioner of Police. Terry's most valuable ally by far was school friend Maxine "Max" Gibson, who stumbled on his secret identity when they were both threatened by a rogue student, and turned her considerable brains and energy to his aid. Max had first-class skills with research, data retrieval, and computer hacking. More than that, she helped Terry maintain his "normal" life as a high-school student, and was always there with a sympathetic ear. (Terry jokingly called her his "Alfred" after she ordered him never to address her as "Robin")
But Terry was different from Bruce in many ways. Unlike his mentor, he had a childhood (of sorts), and also faced the demands of a normal youth his age: a school career, a girlfriend, and the responsibilities of an eldest son in a family which included his mother Mary and his kid brother Matt. It was often a greater strain than Bruce had ever faced to maintain his secret life with these other responsibilities, but it was also a source of solace that he wasn't alone.
Terry occasionally faced some of his mentor's old enemies, including Mr. Freeze, whose disembodied head survived for more than 40 years in cold storage before he was resurrected by Derek Powers; a group of super-strong teenagers using steroids made from Bane's venom; the longevous Ra's al Ghul; and somewhat inevitably, the Joker himself, proving to be undoubtedly Terry's greatest challenge. Having cheated death by transferring his consciousness into a microchip implanted in Tim Drake, the Joker returned to menace Gotham in the 2040s, combining all his old cunning and dangerous unpredictability with a much-stronger genetically engineered body and a wealth of technical knowledge.
At first, the young Dark Knight and the old Clown Prince of Crime both made the mistake of underestimating each other; Terry dismissed the "clown" as an ineffective prankster, while the Joker dismissed the "Bat-Fake" as a "rank amateur" dependent on advice from the elderly Bruce Wayne. Both were proven incorrect, but Terry turned the former into a truism to win the day, putting a final end to the Joker; this earned him the heartfelt respect not only of Bruce, but also of Barbara, Tim, and presumably the rest of the Justice League Unlimited.
Also like Bruce, Terry came to prefer operating alone. Like the original Batman, he was once offered membership in the Justice League by Superman. Though he may have been more tempted than Bruce was at the time, Terry eventually declined, put off by the other Leaguers' willingness to endanger his own life. In the process, however, he almost single-handedly saved Superman, and in turn the world, from an alien invasion, likewise earning the respect of the League (and possibly even greater admiration from Aquagirl).
Terry continued to don the cowl for the next fifteen years, after leaving high school. Bruce eventually trusted him enough to continue Batman's crusade against crime on his own. He managed to preserve his relationship with Dana Tan, who was also let in on his secret. Like Bruce Wayne, he also became a prominent member of the Justice League, seemingly becoming their leader in Superman's absence.
When Terry reached his early 30's, he discovered a shocking truth. When Bruce, in failing health, required a tissue donor so his kidneys could be cloned for a transplant, Terry was checked for compatibility and told he was a perfect match. This led Terry to investigate, discovering that he was Bruce's genetic son all along. Disillusioned, he believed that his whole life had been a lie, that Bruce had planned everything from the beginning and "trapped" him into becoming Batman. But then he confronted Amanda Waller, who told him the truth about Project Batman Beyond.
Waller would go on to tell Terry that his life was still his to choose, but he was worthy of being Batman. Waller emphasized he was not a clone, but the son of Batman. Maybe Terry was not as smart as Bruce, but he was every bit as compassionate and devoted to justice. She also enforced upon him that Bruce's way wasn't always the best, and Terry should take care to keep his friends and family close.
Armed with this advice, Terry reconciled with his biological father, prepared to propose to Dana, and returned to the role of Batman with renewed purpose and perspective.
Powers and AbilitiesEdit
- Highly skilled Martial artist'
- Batsuit: State-of-the-art Batsuit which automatically conforms to his size. The Batsuit features new gadgets such as glider wings, "thrusters" on the boots and even a cloaking device.
- Enhanced strength by a factor of ten, ultimately allowing him to lift up to 1700 lbs.
- Minimal reduction (or increase) in flexibility.
- Forearm spikes can extend out.
- Enhanced visual assistance that allows him to see in the dark (visual from the Batsuit can be fed back to the main computer in the Batcave; it can also receive visual from the main computer, allowing for superior tactical planning). The visor can also serve as digital binoculars and an infra-red filter as well as a scanner.
- Personal communicator allows Terry to keep in constant contact with Bruce at the Batcave.
- Enhanced ballistic protection.
- Significantly resistant to heat, electricity, water, and vibrations, but only slightly resistant to radiation.
- Built-in rebreather for underwater combat/exploration.
- Dispensable Batarangs with a range of auxiliary functions, such as producing electric shocks. However, there is a limit to the amount of Batarangs the Batsuit can dispense; Batman has run out on at least one occasion.
- Disk can be fired from the top of the wrist.
- Electrical discharges throughout the suit that can be activated by pushing the button on the belt.
- Wrist-mounted laser capable of melting metal and stunning his opponents.
- Grappling guns built into the forearms.
- Flashbang grenades.
- Smoke pellets.
- A lock decipher.
- Launchable tracers.
- Retractale Tweezers.
- A frequency scanner to pick up hot spots.
- A retractable PIN or password decipherer in the form of a key on the right index finger.
- Retractable wings under the arms to glide on.
- Rocket boots enabling limited flight.
- Electromagnetic pads in the soles of the boots enabling him to cling to walls and ceilings.
- Sensitive touch microphone on index and middle fingers that permits eavesdropping through solid surfaces.
- Sensors that work as a polygraph.
- Drug identifier, utilized by dipping fingers into the substance.
- Built-in cloaking device that enables almost complete camouflage. It allows camouflage extending into the visible light and infrared frequencies of the electromagnetic spectrum. A countermeasure used by Commissioner Barbara Gordon to this in one incident where she was hunting Batman down was through tracking him using an ultraviolet light to illuminate him.
- Retractable claws which can be used to slice or facilitate climbing.
- Can uplink with the Batmobile for remote piloting.
- A remote kill function that can externally deactivate the suit from the Batcave.
- The belt buckle also serves as a buzz saw to get out of a room quickly or to cut through denser material.
- Season One
- "Black Out"
- "Dead Man's Hand"
- "The Winning Edge"
- "Disappearing Inque"
- "A Touch of Curaré"
- Season Two
- "Earth Mover"
- "Lost Soul"
- "Hidden Agenda"
- "Once Burned"
- "Hooked Up"
- "Mind Games"
- "Terry's Friend Dates a Robot"
- "Final Cut"
- "The Last Resort"
- "Sneak Peek"
- "The Eggbaby"
- "April Moon"
- "Sentries of the Last Cosmos"
- "Where's Terry?"
- "Ace in the Hole"
- Season Three
- "King's Ransom"
- "Big Time"
- "Out of the Past"
- "Speak No Evil"
- "The Call"
- "Curse of the Kobra"
The Zeta ProjectEdit
- "Future Shock"
Justice League UnlimitedEdit
- "The Once and Future Thing Part One: Weird Western Tales"
- "The Once and Future Thing Part Two: Time, Warped"