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Gregorio de la Vega (New Earth)

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Gregorio de la Vega was recruited by the Guardians of the Universe, the creators of the Green Lantern Corps, who planned to create their successors, a race of new Guardians on Earth. One Guardian and a Zamaron, channeled their powers into the "Millennium Project." Gathering ten individuals together and teaching them about the nature of the cosmos, they endowed their "Chosen" with immortality and Metahuman powers. Gregorio was one of these ten. As a minor magician, his magical powers were heightened by the procedure and he became Extraño. The Chosen formed the New Guardians, and took it upon themselves to fight evil wherever it lurked on Earth.

De la Vega was openly gay with a lively, jovial attitude. He referred to himself as "Auntie" and usually imparted parent-like advice to his teammates. Extraño eventually acquired a powerful crystal skull, which amplified his abilities.

Extraño helped his team defeat a number of supervillains while trying his best to assist them with personal problems, proving to have an earnest sense of justice and love of life that made him popular with his teammates. On one mission, he was attacked by an "AIDS vampire" called the Hemo-Goblin. He was subsequently confirmed to be HIV-positive but it's unclear whether he was infected by Hemo-Goblin or had already been infected prior to the attack.

Although the Guardians continued as a team for some time, their island base was attacked and consumed by the villain Entropy. It was unknown if Extraño survived.

Powers

  • Extraño is quite possibly DC Comics' first openly gay super-hero. Unfortunately, Extraño was portrayed as resembling nearly every stereotype of a gay man, initially wearing loose colorful garments and playing the role of comic relief. His flamboyant characterization elicited various responses from readers, from amusement to hatred. Perhaps as a reaction to the comments of readers, Extraño was redesigned to wear a more traditional, "masculine" superhero costume. He may, in fact, be the very first openly gay superhero. This distinction is usually given to Marvel Comics' Northstar. While Northstar came out a few years after Extraño was introduced, he was a much more popular character who existed for ten years prior and was implied to be gay in some appearances.

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