- I think it's time to try... defying gravity...
- -- Maxine Hunkel src
Maxine Hunkel is the granddaughter of the original Red Tornado, Abigail "Ma" Hunkel, an honorary member of the Justice Society and current caretaker of their headquarters. Maxine grew up idolizing her grandmother's allies in the JSA.
As a young girl, Maxine was once kidnapped by T.O. Morrow, the mad scientist who created the second Red Tornado, a powerful android. He injected her with Red Tornado technology nanobytes, though their effects did not manifest until years later.
Cheerful, bubbly, and extremely intelligent (4.0 GPA and a 1300 SAT score in high school), Maxine is a 19-year-old student at Harvard University and an avid fan of musical theater, particularly the play, Wicked. However, her talkative nature and know-it-all personality often alienate her peers and leave the young woman isolated. Her outcast status causes her to suffer from atypical depression.
In recent months, she has begun to manifest unusual superhuman abilities. A sneeze demolished her grandmother's garage and, the next day, she awoke inside a tornado five hundred feet off the ground. The young woman soon realized that she has the power to manipulate wind.
When the Justice Society decides to expand its ranks and provide training to new heroes, Maxine is one of the first recruits on their list. She is invited to join the team by Power Girl and Mr. Terrific and accepts through extreme amounts of excitement (her motormouth response nearly causes them to revoke the offer). Shortly afterwards, she is introduced to the rest of the JSA and her fan girl personality becomes evident in her bubbling reaction to meeting her heroes, particularly fellow teen Stargirl. As a way to ease her pain over seeing Mr. America's death, Stargirl takes her to a room full of colorful fabrics, and (playing on Maxine's college major and interest, the theater) asks her to select her new outfit.
In her 'rookie phase' with the Justice Society, she helped defeat the Fourth Reich, assisted the Justice League during the Lightning Saga, and fought the Heartbreak Slayer when he attacked Justice Society headquarters. Along the way she visited the Fortress of Solitude and teamed up with the android Red Tornado.
- Aerokinesis: Maxine possesses the power of wind manipulation. She is able to mentally summon cyclones and whirlwinds, project powerful bursts of air, and glide through the air on wind currents.
- Deflection: She is able to deflect approaching objects with ease.
- Cyclone Creation: She can create massive tornadoes, huge cyclones that react to the environment by themselves or bend to her will. Likewise she can create smaller twisters to blow down doors or small enough to gently blow loose clothing and hair.
- Air Blasts: She can force wind outwards in an air blast cone, direct blows and in larger areas around herself.
- Flight: She can either glide on wind currents or create a direct cyclonic wind beneath her to guide her flight.
- Maxine Hunkel first appeared as a superhero in Kingdom Come, though she took the name Red Tornado after her grandmother. Her costume is radically different from her New Earth-version, though she does use the same logo, a stylized whirlwind. Red Tornado wore them as hair pins, while Cyclone has a smaller version of them on her chest.
- Maxine officially debuted as Cyclone in Justice Society of America #3, honoring both the Red Tornado and her former sidekicks, the Cyclone Kids (Maxine's aunt and uncle).
- Maxine is quite possibly Stargirl's biggest fan, and once talked about her for three hours.
- She owns a pet monkey named Frankie (after L. Frank Baum, author of The Wonderful Wizard of Oz).
- Maxine is not the first Golden Age legacy character to use the code name Cyclone. The first was a Nazi agent known as Der Zyklon (German for Cyclone).
- 95 Appearances of Maxine Hunkel (New Earth)
- 17 Images featuring Maxine Hunkel (New Earth)
- 2 Quotations by or about Maxine Hunkel (New Earth)
- Character Gallery: Maxine Hunkel (New Earth)
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Justice Society of America member