Growing up, Ted was extraordinarily bright. He was good at science, business, and everything else he tried. In college, he received degrees in Physics, English Lit, and Theoretical Mathematics. He considered joining his father's business, Kord Omniversal Research and Development, Inc, of Chicago, but overall, he had no real direction.
When Ted's uncle made an attempt to take over the world, Ted set out to stop him, recruiting the help of his archaeology teacher Dan Garrett - the first Blue Beetle, who could call on superhuman powers from an ancient scarab he had found in Bialya. In the course of the adventure, Dan was fatally wounded and asked Ted to carry on the legacy of the Blue Beetle, passing the scarab onto him. However, Ted couldn't get the scarab to work for him, and eventually set it aside, electing to go ahead without it.
Ted trained himself to his physical peak, constructed an aerial vehicle affectionately nicknamed the "Bug", made himself a Blue Beetle costume, and set out to establish his own identity as a superhero, using his wit, agility, and a large number of gadgets to stop evildoers.
After losing his wife, Ted's father neglected Kord Omniversal, letting it become a shell of its former self. Ted revitalized the company, building it up until it became one of the top R&D companies in the USA, rivaling S.T.A.R. Labs.
During the Crisis on Infinite Earths, Ted was recruited by the Monitor to help fight the Anti-Monitor's shadow-demons. Ted discovered that Dan's scarab was able to utterly destroy the shadow-demons, but was sent back when the Monitor found the scarab couldn't be used as he wished. Ted kept fighting in the Crisis, but lost hold of the scarab in the turmoil, and couldn't find it in the aftermath.
The scarab resurfaced some time after the Crisis, apparently having resurrected Dan Garrett and sent him on a crazed rampage. When Ted confronted Dan and the scarab, the scarab spoke to him, telling Ted it wanted him as its new host, and offering him the use of its powers. Ted refused, and helped Dan break the scarab's control over him, shattering the scarab's physical form and letting Dan die a final death, leaving Ted to grieve for his mentor one final time.
Ted's father eventually recovered enough to take back Kord Omniversal, but the company was devastated by Carapax, one of Ted's villains. Ted left to make his name in the superhero business.
Ted joined the Justice League as it was being reformed in the wake of Operation Humiliation, and often served as the pilot for the League's many vehicles. As part of the JLI, Ted met and befriended Booster Gold. The two had their differences, but served together for many years and had a bond that went beyond their wisecracks and buffoonery.
Ted's mouth and sense of humor often got him into trouble with other members of the League, especially the women. However, behind his jokes was a sincerity of heart, the knowledge of his responsibility as the Blue Beetle, and a desire to make the world safer for all.
Following his time on the League, Ted reasserted control of his business from his father, eventually making Kord Omniversal a subsidiary of Wayne Enterprises. He retired from super-heroics for a short time but occasionally helped the Birds of Prey with funding and technology, becoming friends with members of the team. While working with the Birds, Ted discovered that he had a heart condition, limiting the amount of exertion he could manage without endangering his health.
During Identity Crisis, Ted led a team in search of Heatwave, one of the initial suspects in the murder of Sue Dibny. Soon afterwards, he came into possession of Dan Garrett's scarab, which Hawkman had rediscovered in a Middle Eastern pyramid, untouched. However, the scarab was inert, as it had been when Ted had first received it from Dan, and did not respond to him.
A little while later, a shipment of Kryptonite was stolen from one of Kord Omniversal's warehouses. Ted's various friends and allies looked into it for a while, but soon returned to their own lives. If that hadn't been enough, Ted was then set upon by a gang of the Madmen.
With Booster's help, Ted set out to investigate the Kryptonite theft. In so doing, he unwittingly ran up against the shadows of the impending Infinite Crisis. During the course of his investigations, he lost the scarab to the wizard Shazam, saw Booster blasted by a bolt of energy from Brother Eye, which landed Booster in hospital, and witnessed the beginning of the Rann-Thanagar War. However, Ted found that no-one else, apart from Wonder Woman, seemed willing or able to hear what he'd discovered about the theft, leaving him to go it alone.
On the trail of his last remaining lead - a bug placed on him by the Madmen - Ted tracked the signal from the bug to Checkmate headquarters in Switzerland, where he discovered a series of files that held the identities, strengths and weakness' of all of Earth's heroes. There, he confronted the mastermind behind Checkmate - its Black King, and Ted's one-time friend, Maxwell Lord, who planned to kill Earth's metahumans using Brother Eye and the O.M.A.C.s, making the planet safe for humanity. Seizing his opportunity when Checkmate's files were unexpectedly deleted, Ted made a break for it - but was brutally beaten by an OMAC and locked up. After being offered a chance to change sides by Max, he told Max to "rot in hell" and was shot and killed by his former ally.
Barbara Gordon, who had been a close friend of Ted's, established a memorial in his name, with further plans on the way. The Blue Beetle name survived, too; Hispanic teenager Jaime Reyes became the new guardian of the Blue Beetle scarab, following in Dan and Ted's footsteps as the third Blue Beetle.
The Blue Beetle of the 27th century, sensing a massive temporal disruption caused by Ted's death, traveled back in time to save Ted, recruiting Dan, Jaime, and Booster to assist him. Together, they succeeded, managing to rescue Ted from Checkmate before Max could kill him. To preserve the timeline, however, no-one in the present could know Ted was alive.  However, this led to the creation of a timeline where Ted's death had not alerted any of his former allies, and instead Maxwell Lord had managed to activate the O.M.A.C. Project in its entirety, effortlessly subjugating the populace of New Earth. To erase the altered timeline, Kord fought his way back to the Time Sphere, which he programmed to send him to his death with Lord. However, a figure has since then reappeared, holding several pieces of Blue Beetle paraphernalia, prowling around a K.O.R.D. Industries warehouse. The figure then laughs in Kord's distinct "BWA-HA-HA-HA!".
When a Black Power Ring takes possession of his corpse, Ted Kord, unable to locate Booster Gold due to his new time-travelling duties, lures him in the open by targeting Daniel Carter and Rose Levin, his 21st century ancestry. He is able to successfully pierce the Supernova costume shields with a Black Lantern BB Gun, and holds Supernova in place while beating Blue Beetle (Jaime Reyes) and staving off Skeets' attack, until Booster arrives. He then moves in for the kill, hoping to rip out Booster's heart.
He battles all of them, but is unsuccessful in killing anyone except a neighbor who complained about the noise from the fight. Jaime and Booster remove Rose and Daniel from the scene, and head to a KORD Industries warehouse where one of Ted Kord's hidden bases is located, to collect special equipment to fight the Black Lantern. Booster discovers that someone had accessed Ted Kord's hidden base a few months before his remains were reanimated. However, the only people, to Booster's knowledge, who have authorization to access it are Booster Gold and Kord himself. They then head back, where Ted's corpse battles Booster until he is attacked by a light blast from a gun designed by Ted Kord himself, tuned to simulate the emotional spectrum. Separated from the ring, Booster seizes his remains before the ring can reanimate them, takes them into the Time Sphere, and deposits them in a small grave at Vanishing Point Fortress
Maxwell Lord, the former head of Justice League International and the murderer of Ted Kord, is restored to life and uses a device to amplify his mind control powers to erase his existence from the minds of almost everyone on the planet. He also influences the superhero community into believing Ted committed suicide, which enrages Booster Gold, one of the few who could remember of Max existence and also the best friend of Ted.
Later, Power Girl after regaining her memories about Max exhumes the corpse of Ted Kord so Dick Grayson can examine it. Dick refuses, still unconvinced about the existence of Maxwell Lord, but Batman arrives to reveal he remembers Lord as well. He and Dick examine the body with Batman making Dick realized Ted was actually murdered. Thus, putting the fiasco and Ted's memory at ease
Powers and AbilitiesEdit
Genius-Level Intellect: (IQ 192)
- Gifted Inventor: Rivaling Batman's inventive mind, Ted was the creator of many inventions and crime-fighting technologies, like his solar-powered "Bug" vehicle, BB gun, and many more. He also ran a company, Kord Industries, which produces hundreds of new technologies.
Skilled Acrobat: Kord was an accomplished acrobat, who more often than not, utilized this greatly into his hand-to-hand fighting style.
Martial Artist: Had studied with several martial arts masters, and can out-fight just about any group of thugs or criminals with his fighting skills alone.
Espionage Expert: skilled at espionage.
Ted originally had the strength of a man his height and weight who engaged in regular intensive physical exercise. However, the discovery of his heart condition limited what he could safely exert.
- Baby-Bugs/Snoopies: Small bug-shaped flying surveillance drones used for spying or for hazardous areas e.g. radiation zones.
- Radiation Suit: The "Bug" also contained a radiation suit similar to his standard suit.
- The Bug, a multipurpose 80% solar powered beetle-shaped craft, capable of operating in air and water and built with a mobile lab, blasters, magnetic manipulators, grasping "claws" and defense shields.
- Beetle Gun: could produce a blinding flash or a blast of compressed air capable of knocking down several grown men. He also had other weapons and gadgets in the "Bug" to deal with larger numbers of opponents.
- In Ted's Charlton Comics origin, and again in his first DC origin, the Blue Beetle Scarab was lost with Dan. However, when Ted appeared in Crisis on Infinite Earths #3, he had the scarab in his possession. This was resolved following Infinite Crisis. 52 Week 52 confirmed that Ted had the scarab during Crisis on Infinite Earths, while Blue Beetle (vol. 2) #8 (2006) explained where Ted had got the scarab by retconning his origin. In Ted's new origin, Dan had managed to pass the scarab on to him, but Ted found he couldn't make the scarab work for him.
- In The OMAC Project, Ted mentions that he has a brother, though this is not confirmed.
- 426 Appearances of Theodore Kord (New Earth)
- 177 Images featuring Theodore Kord (New Earth)
- 17 Quotations by or about Theodore Kord (New Earth)
- Character Gallery: Theodore Kord (New Earth)
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|Justice League member|
This character is or was a member of the Justice League of America, or the Justice League in any of its various incarnations, sworn by a duty to act as guardians of America and the world by using their skills and/or superpowers to protect Earth from both interstellar and domestic threats.