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Quote1 My name is Hunter Zolomon. Despite what the public believes, I am the fastest man alive. I am Zoom. But I am not a Rogue. Far from it. I have taken the name and colors from Eobard Thawne -- the time traveler known as Professor Zoom -- in order to terrorize my friend. Wally West. The Flash. I suffered through tragedy. I lost my family to it. I understand the depths it will drag one down to. And only by surviving it does one become stronger. I will recreate myself to help my friend and in turn -- the world. I will do anything to make the Flash a better hero. Quote2
-- Hunter Zolomon src

Hunter Zolomon is Zoom, a speedster super-villain and enemy to the Flash who became the third Reverse-Flash. Originally working as a metahuman profiler for the KCPD, he was crippled by Gorilla Grodd and gained powers through an accident with the Cosmic Treadmill. Zolomon lost his mind and dedicated his life to making former friend Wally West a better hero through tragedy.

Origins

Hunter had a troubled relationship with his parents, who rarely spoke to each other or to him. On the day Hunter was to leave for college, he came home to find the police laying siege to his house. His father was a serial killer, and when his mother told the police, Hunter's father killed her. After refusing to give up, his father was killed by the police.

Hunter Zolomon 001

Hunter Zolomon

Hunter became obsessed with understanding the criminal mind, studying psychology and criminology in college, then joining the F.B.I. along with his girlfriend Ashley, whom he later married. One case resulted in Ashley's father being killed (Hunter had thought the criminal they were after would not use a gun).[1] Ashley left him shortly thereafter, and the F.B.I. terminated his employment. Hunter was also left with a damaged knee due to the case, requiring a cane for walking.

After arriving in Keystone City, he got a job as a profiler, working with the police in their Department of Metahuman Hostilities. His work put him in constant contact with the current Flash, Wally West, and the two became good friends. His insight was critical in solving a number of cases, but he always resented being stuck behind a desk.

Transformation into Zoom

Hunter was severely injured in an attack by Gorilla Grodd in Iron Heights[2]. The injuries left Hunter paralyzed from the waist down. He asked Wally West to use the time-traveling Cosmic Treadmill in the Flash Museum to prevent this from occurring. West refused, saying that he could not risk damaging the timestream. Zolomon then broke into the museum and attempted to use the treadmill himself. The resulting explosion destroyed the museum and shifted Hunter's connection to time. He could now alter his personal timeframe, giving the effect of super-speed.[3]

Zolomon decided that West had refused to help because, unlike the previous Flash Barry Allen, West had never suffered personal tragedy. Zolomon decided that if he became the new Zoom and killed West's wife (Linda Park), this would help the Flash become a better hero. Flash succeeded in defeating Zoom, preventing Linda's death, but his attack caused a miscarriage of their twin children. Zolomon was forced into a temporal anomaly and ended up in a comatose state, continually watching the death of his father-in-law.

Zolomon's ex-wife, Ashley Zolomon, replaced him as profiler and spent a lot of time attempting to communicate with him. Due to a car accident, Ashley was hospitalized for some time.[4] It was around this period that Zoom awoke from his coma, out of concern for Ashley. He cautiously chose to remain in his cell, however.

Rogue War

Zoom was driven out of his self-imposed imprisonment by Cheetah in an attempt to both harness super-speed and induct him into the growing Secret Society of Super Villains. The two shared a minor romance, but nothing serious happened as Zoom considered himself to still be married to Ashley.[5]

Zoom later infiltrated the already-growing "Rogue War" between Captain Cold's Rogues, the Trickster's reformed Rogues, and the Top's brainwashed rogues. Quickly spiriting his estranged wife Ashley out of danger to the home of Linda Park, Zoom returned to the battlefront to dispatch Captain Cold, claiming that the "Man Who Mastered Absolute Zero" was wasting the Flash's time with his longstanding, self-aggrandizing methods of villainy.

Zoom was not done. As the Flash and Kid Flash (Bart Allen) attempt to contain the battle, Zoom throttled Kid Flash and threatened to snap his neck in a manner reminiscent of what Barry Allen had done to Eobard Thawne (Professor Zoom). Before Zoom could kill Kid Flash, however, Professor Zoom himself arrived on a cosmic treadmill, with Jay Garrick chained to the front end.

A battle ensued between the two Flashes and Kid Flash against the two Zooms, but in the end, the two Zooms accomplished what they intended. They grabbed the Flash and jumped onto the treadmill. Zoom then forced the Flash to watch their first fight, in which Linda was severely injured and miscarried. Zoom felt that Wally West should be made to focus on the feelings of sorrow and loss from this experience and told Professor Zoom to rewind it so that he could watch it again. But as the scene started to rewind, West's uncle and mentor Barry Allen appeared, riding his own Cosmic Treadmill and saying that he had been looking for Professor Zoom.

Barry Allen removed West from immediate danger, telling West that he was here to return Thawne to his proper place in time, and that no matter how bad it seemed, West could win this if he "just pushed himself a bit". He and Thawne then disappeared through time. Zoom, enraged, began to run around the world, building up speed, with which to kill Linda. Wally rushed to catch up, but he was a step or two behind. At the last minute, he realized what Barry's advice meant and put on a final burst of speed, pushing himself, and hitting Zoom in the back. Zoom fell forward and was caught in the sonic boom which he himself used to kill Linda's babies (this ended up creating a “fissure in time” that restored Linda's pregnancy, just in time for her to give birth). Zoom ran for the treadmill, but West forced them back to their mutual present. Along the way, they viewed scenes of Zoom's life. Zoom realized his mistreatment of Wally and briefly apologized before slipping into the timestream. He was later seen as a ghost-like figure apologizing to his wife.

Zoom returned during the Infinite Crisis event as the Secret Society of Super Villains's chief speedster, but with his recent epiphany, a phase of his life as a character has ended.

One Year Later

Main article: One Year Later

Zoom later appears at the sacking of Rome, being approached by Bart Allen's grandmother, to help her protect Bart from a great tragedy that the villain Inertia was setting up.[6] It is unknown whether Zoom traveled to this time period himself, or if he became stranded there after his last encounter with Wally West.

He was also pursued by the Justice League in an attempt to locate Sinestro after Batman (Bruce Wayne) and Green Lantern (Hal Jordan) learn of the existence of the Sinestro Corps.[7]

Zoom is pursued by the Justice Society of America into Atlanta. Damage is banned from the city, but enters anyway seeking revenge. During a scuffle, he ends up taking Zoom hostage until being talked down by Liberty Belle. Disappointed that Damage is not "improving", he throws a sharp pipe to kill him. Liberty Belle uses her superspeed to catch it and toss it back, knocking Zoom unconscious.[8]

Hunter became a member of Libra's Secret Society of Super Villains.

Final Crisis

Main article: Final Crisis

In Final Crisis: Rogues' Revenge he frees Inertia from his paralysis, inflicted previously by Wally West, hoping to make him his apprentice as a new Kid Flash, teaching how to "improve" his own life and the ones of others by inflicting great tragedies. Inertia learns the lesson too well, and claiming himself to be "Kid Zoom", the new master of tragedies, turns over the Flash's Rogues and Zoom altogether. Employing the time stream manipulation powers Zoom granted him against his master, he reverts the body of Zoom to the crippled, broken body of Hunter Zolomon, stripping him of his powers.[9]

The Flash: Rebirth

Main article: The Flash: Rebirth

After being depowered, Hunter was re-imprisoned in Iron Heights. When Eobard Thawne is imprisoned after a failed attempt to destroy the Flash Family, Hunter proposes another partnership.[10]

Rebirth

Flash War

Main article: Flash: Rebirth

At some point, Hunter was broken out of prison by Eobard Thawne, and taken to the 25th century by Thawne, to work together against the Flashes. Due to being in the 25th century during the Flashpoint, Hunter remained unaffected by the changes to the timeline. He was not de-aged and retains all of his pre-Flashpoint memories, despite now existing in the post-flashpoint timeline.[11] While in the 25th century, Hunter and Thawne gained control of the Temporal Courts, a force dedicated to investigating changes to the timeline, and Thawne used futuristic technology to restore Hunter's ability to walk.[11]

After a disagreement, Thawne ran back in time to the 21st Century, leaving Hunter stranded in the 25th Century. From the 25th century, Hunter was able to see Thawne's repeated deaths, feeling guilty for not going back to the past with him. Hunter then realizes that Thawne had been right all along and that the Flashes do not deserve to become better heroes. This anger causes his powers to return, and his Zoom suit manifests around him.[11]

Hunter then decides to send the Renegades to the 21st century to capture Iris West for questioning for the murder of Eobard Thawne. When attempting to capture her, they are confronted by Barry Allen, Wally West and Wallace West. During the battle, Wally West has a "temporal seizure". The Renegades promise to care for him if Iris agrees to come back with them, to which she agrees, although Barry and Wallace also travel to the 25th century with them. Hunter manipulated the energy signatures of the group, separating Wally from the rest of the group. He informs Wally that all of the forgotten speedsters are lost in the Speed Force and that the only way to save them is to destroy it.[12] Hunter proceeds to manipulate Wally, feigning the loss of his powers and claiming that he only wishes to help Wally rescue those who have been lost, in particular Wally's lost children, Irey and Jai West. Wally, after protecting Hunter from the distrustful Barry Allen and Commander Cold, proceeds to try and break the Speed Force, with Barry pursuing him. Hunter then disappears in a flash of light, the world around him soon disappearing. [13] After the two Flashes run fast enough to enter the Speed Force, it is revealed that Hunter's plan was actually to have the two destroy the Force Wall, which held back various energies. Appearing and incapacitating the Justice League, Hunter then explained to the two that he knew the true whereabouts of the missing speedsters, but that he'd decided to become the new Flash to protect the world. Donning the original Flash suit used by Barry Allen, Hunter demonstrated the abilities he gained from the Sage Force and Strength Force.[14]

Powers

  • Speed Force Conduit: After tricking Barry Allen and Wally West into breaking the Force Barrier, Zoom gained access to the Speed Force - a mysterious cosmic force that pushes time and space itself forward. Being a Speed Force Conduit radically accelerates all aspects of Hunter's being.[15]
    • Superhuman Speed: Zoom is able to move at immense speeds, fast enough to keep up with Wally West. Zoom was also able to instantaneously incapacitate the Justice League and the Titans before any of them could react.[14]
    • Superhuman Reflexes: Zoom possesses reflexes far greater than a normal human being. This allows him to easily react to danger and events, and perceive the world in slow motion.[15]
    • Superhuman Stamina: Zoom's body can handle the stress of moving at superhuman speeds for extended periods of time without getting tired or weak.[15]
    • Superhuman Agility: Zoom's agility, balance, and bodily coordination are enhanced to superhuman levels. This allows him to easily make sharp turns and leap far distances while moving at superhuman speed.
    • Speed Force Aura: Zoom's body is surrounded by a "friction cushion", which provides protection from the nastier elements of their speed, including friction, airborne particulate matter, kinetic impacts, G-Force and the like.
      • Superhuman Durability: Zoom is capable of resisting tremendous kinetic impact forces that could easily crush or kill a human, without suffering any serious external or internal injuries, making him much more durable than any human.[15]
    • Accelerated Healing: Like all conduits of the Speed Force, Zoom is capable of regenerating from injuries much faster than any normal human.
    • Electrokinesis: Zoom's body generates large amounts of electrical energy that he draws from the Speed Force. This Speed Force lightning emanates off of him, especially when he moves at super-speed.[15]
    • Enhanced Senses: The Speed Force grants Zoom enhanced senses that allow him to perceive the world at a rate attuned to his reaction speed.[15]
    • Time Travel: By running fast enough, Zoom is able to jump into the timestream and travel throughout it. He used this ability to enter Hypertime.[15]
  • Sage Force Conduit: After tricking Barry Allen and Wally West into breaking the Force Barrier, Zoom also gained access to the Sage Force - a previously untapped cosmic force that radically enhances the minds of its conduits.[14]
    • Enhanced Intellect: As stated by Zoom, the Sage Force enhances his mind, making it greater than the mental capacity of any normal human.[15]
    • Telekinesis: The Sage Force grants Zoom the ability to telekinetically manipulate the movement of objects and others at will.[15]
    • Telepathy: Zoom is able to use the power of the Sage Force to telepathically invade the minds of others.[15]
  • Strength Force Conduit: After tricking Barry Allen and Wally West into breaking the Force Barrier, Zoom also gained access to the Strength Force - a previously untapped cosmic force that radically enhances strength of its conduits.[14]

Abilities

Weaknesses

  • Power Limitation (Formerly): At a certain point in his career, Zoom couldn't vibrate his molecules like his speedster enemies enough to phase through solid matter. Because of this the Flash was able to gain a considerable distance on Zoom because Zoom would need to run around the physical blockades.

Related


Footnotes


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Flash Villain(s)
This character, team, or organization, is or was primarily an enemy of any or all of the various incarnations of the Flash. This template will categorize articles that include it into the category "Flash Villains."

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Secret Society of Super-Villains member
This character is or was a member of the Secret Society of Super-Villains, a cadre of super-villains who band together to accomplish feats no one super-villain can do alone, in any of its various incarnations. This template will categorize articles that include it into the "Secret Society of Super-Villains members" category.