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Quote1 Followers of the Flame, you shall see tonight how the avenger consumes its enemies! Quote2
-- Zara src

As a young girl, the Arab named Zara was sold into slavery by her own father. This led her to despise all men in power; as an adult, she would revenge herself upon them by starting the Cult of the Crimson Flame, which wooed the daughters of those men into worshiping a strange and ruthless God of Fire.

Positioning herself as the Cult's high priestess, Zara terrified her followers into obedience with a number of fire-related theatrics. Any who defied the Cult were "cursed" with illness and insanity (in reality, stress from the Cult's terror-tactics) if not assassinated outright. Thus did Zara attain a worldwide following, her influence reaching as far as Washington, D.C.

Eventually, the Cult met its match in Wonder Woman, who began investigating at the behest of a Senator's daughter. All of Zara's attempts to rout this investigation failed, and the Amazon Princess would eventually scuttle the Cult by forcing Zara to admit all its secrets under the Lasso of Truth.[1]

Zara was then sent to Transformation Island to be reformed of her criminal ways. On at least one occasion, however, she escaped to join Eviless' Villainy Inc.[2]


Abilities

Equipment

  • Flame Capsules: Zara's most commonly-used invention was a capsule that used hydrogen to create fire which could be seen but not felt, and vanished without trace. These were often combined with invisible ink to create "phantom" messages meant to intimidate the Cult's enemies.
  • Flame Fetters: Shackles designed to self-destruct if forced, burning off the captive's hands and/or feet.
  • Projector: Supplied the image and voice for the "God" of the Crimson Flame.
  • Sun Reflectors: These mirrors were installed on the Cult's central temple in the Arabian Desert to dazzle and confuse unwanted strangers.

Weapons

  • Scimitar: In close combat, Zara's preferred weapon was a scimitar with a burning blade. This sword doubled as an initiation prop for the Cult; prospective members were expected to swear on it that they would kill even their own kin.
  • This version of Zara, including all history and corresponding appearances, was initially erased from existence following the collapse of the original Multiverse in the 1985–86 Crisis on Infinite Earths limited series. However the ending of Convergence retroactively prevented that collapse, saving all the alternate realities, though in an "evolved" form. Even though versions of the character may have since appeared, this information does not apply to those versions.
  • Though she refers to herself as an Arab and headquartered the Cult of the Crimson Flame in the Arabian Desert, Zara's accent is stereotypically French, and her skin-tone implies at least some European ancestry. This may indicate she hails from one of France's Arab colonies, such as Algeria.

Related


Footnotes


Villainy Incorporated 001
Wonder Woman Villain(s)
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This character is or was primarily an enemy of Wonder Woman and the Amazons in any of her various incarnations. This template will categorize articles that include it into the "Wonder Woman Villains category."