DC Animated Universe
JL logo

"If you call me 'girlfriend', I'm gonna dropkick you into the next county."[1]

Black Canary (real name Dinah Laurel Lance) was an aggressive martial artist with a supersonic voice who joined the Justice League after the Thanagarian invasion.


Joining the League[]

Dinah Lance was one of the many Justice League members who joined after the Thanagarian invasion. She was trained by Wildcat, and was one of the League's best hand-to-hand fighters.

Arrow and Canary[]

Green Arrow soon noticed the shapely blonde bombshell, and decided to stick around to meet her. Canary used this infatuation when she recruited him on a personal mission: trying to persuade Wildcat to get out of Meta-Brawl fighting.

Black Canary and Green Arrow visited Wildcat, but he didn't budge. With this approach not working, Black Canary opted to destroy the Meta-Brawl instead. During the fight with some of the Brawl's fighters, Black Canary took to a different plan: she proposed to the Meta-Brawl's owner, Roulette, to fight Wildcat herself. Should she win, Wildcat would be banned from all events, should she lose, nothing would change. Roulette accepted.

Green Arrow had a different plan. He used knock out gas on Black Canary and took her spot in the ring. Wildcat was opposed to fighting the less-skilled Green Arrow, but after some taunting words by Green Arrow, Wildcat gave everything.

Green Arrow and Black Canary romance

The beginning of Green Arrow and Black Canary's romantic relationship.

The two men fought a one-sided battle, with Green Arrow taking punch after punch. Black Canary watched in horror, stopped from interfering by Roulette's guards. The fight reached an eerie climax as Green Arrow fell, seemingly killed by the abuse. Rushing to Green Arrow and professing her love for him over his dead body, he turned out to be alive. He explained he used a stunner to trigger a metabolic stasis so that he would appear to have died in the fight. Wildcat resigned from the Meta-Brawl with disgust over (seemingly) killing someone, whilst Canary took down the ring and the stands with her canary cry. Later, they returned to the Watchtower, where Wildcat was getting help from J'onn, and Black Canary and Green Arrow officially began their romantic relationship.

Protecting Mandragora[]

Green Arrow and Black Canary were assigned to assist Agent Faraday in guarding crime lord Steven Mandragora from the Huntress and ensure that he made it to the intended grand jury hearing. A series of verbal exchanges as well as Canary punching Mandragora resulted in Faraday putting them on perimeter watch.

Coincidentally Mandragora's thugs, as well as Huntress, arrive at the safe house at the same time. Huntress did not come alone, she brought Question. Arrow and Canary were already alerted to the possibility that they might encounter Huntress as the latter had personal history with Mandragora. The four heroes fight, leaving Mandragora free to escape with his thugs Tony and Cecil.

Arrow and Canary overcame Question and Huntress, but not in time to prevent Mandragora's escape. Now with Mandragora on the loose it became urgent to recover him. Thinking Question knows where he has gone, Arrow pressed Question for information. Question turned over a key, but Green Arrow saw through the misdirection.

On Black Canary's motorcycle, the Green Arrow and Black Canary tailed Question's Pontiac in the hopes that it would lead them to Mandragora. Question spotted them with ease, so he tried to lose them by using a car trailer ramp to launch his vehicle up to the tracks above street level and Canary followed suit. Question and Huntress in the car narrowly dodged the oncoming train. It was only due to Arrow requesting an emergency transport that he and Canary beam out just before the train crushed Canary's motorcycle. The loss of her bike infuriated Canary, but at least they were able to catch up to Question and Huntress in the docks.

Arrow and Question engaged the voluminous Mandragora first, but he fended them off with ease. Canary took her shot by using her sonic cry on him, which similarly failed to do anything except shred his jacket and shirt. Canary was soon drained and fell to the ground.

Mandragora then seized the helpless Canary, grabbing and holding her up by her long blonde hair as Canary struggled in pain. However, Huntress then emerged aiming her crossbow at him. He dropped Canary and turned to face Huntress. If not for the Question, then Huntress might have killed her parents' murderer, yet it was also the appearance of Mandragora's son Edgar that further turned her away from killing the crime lord.

Ultimen invasion[]

When the Founding Members of the Justice League turned themselves over to federal custody during the Cadmus crisis, those still aboard the power drained Watchtower faced an assault from an army of Ultimen clones. Canary was one of many Leaguers to engage the clones in battle. She used her canary cry but was overtaken by Shifter from behind.

Glamour Slam[]

Roulette was out for revenge and used Sonar to place Black Canary and several other female Leaguers (Fire, Vixen, Hawkgirl and Wonder Woman) under mind control to fight in the new Meta-Brawl "Glamor Slam," which meant all girl cage fights. With the help of the Huntress, they were all freed and Roulette was defeated. Afterward, she offered to get Huntress back into the League, but Huntress turned the offer down.

Darkseid's invasion[]

During Darkseid's second invasion of Earth, Black Canary fought off parademons in Rome with Green Arrow, Doctor Light and Bizarro. She took out several of them with her canary cry.

After the invasion, Black Canary, Green Arrow and the rest of the Justice League went after the super villains they had previously teamed up with.

Powers and abilities[]

The Black Canary had as one of her powers the Canary Cry, an ultrasonic scream capable of anything from incapacitating an opponent to wrecking a building. She has stated that doing the Cry too close to someone has the ability to kill them. However, Black Canary cannot hold her Cry out for too long, for it leaves her exhausted.

Black Canary is very skilled at hand-to-hand combat, having been trained by former League member Wildcat. She has been shown to match with or defeat Green Arrow, Huntress, Fire, Vixen, or even Hawkgirl. She could even hold her own with Wonder Woman who is much stronger and possesses a lifetime of combat experience due her life with the Amazons.

Background information[]

  • In DC Comics, Dinah Laurel Lance is the second Black Canary. Her mother, Dinah Drake Lance, was the first. While her mother uses an artificial ultrasonic scream, Dinah Laurel has a metagene that is recessive in both of her parents, causing her to have a real Canary Cry. Dinah was trained by League members, including Wildcat, who were old friends of her mother. Despite her mother's opposition, Dinah took up the Black Canary mantle, operating out of Gotham City with a day job at the family florist business.
  • According to Paul Dini, during the early development of Batman: The Animated Series, there were originally plans for a Catwoman/Black Canary team up episode. However, the episode went unproduced as Robin was omitted from its story, and since Fox Kids changed the name of the series to The Adventures of Batman & Robin, they denied the episode's production since the rule insisted that Robin had to be featured properly in each episode of the series.[2]
  • Black Canary's character model in Justice League Unlimited is based on a background character who appeared in The New Batman Adventures episode "The Ultimate Thrill," and the flashback sequence in Batman Beyond: Return of the Joker, while being questioned under Batgirl. Storyboard artist Darwyn Cooke had the idea of making the background character (implied to be a sex worker) look like Black Canary. Later on, when Bruce Timm was designing Black Canary for Justice League Unlimited, he reused that model, making some minor adjustments.[3]


Justice League Unlimited


  1. Wayne, Matt (story) & DeMatteis, J.M. (teleplay) & Dos Santos, Joaquim (director) (March 11, 2006). "Grudge Match". Justice League Unlimited. Season 2. Episode 9 (airdate). Episode 35 (production). Cartoon Network.
  2. A potentially intriguing Catwoman/Black Canary team-up was interrupted in midpitch to the network by their demand, "Where's Robin?" When the writers asked if they could omit Robin from just this one episode, Fox obliged by omitting the entire story.

    Paul Dini, Batman Animated, Robin section

  3. Bruce Timm forum post (Drawing Boards, 2004)

External links[]