Long Shadow was a former member of the Ultimen. As with the rest of the team, he was genetically engineered by the U.S. Government to be a powerful team of superheroes obedient to them, unlike the Justice League.
Notably unlike his teammates, Long Shadow was more cool-headed, humble and didn't let superhero fame go to his head. He still retained his admiration of the heroes of the Justice League, considered them as his role models and continued to desire an alliance with them.
Long Shadow wanted his team to join the Justice League, but the other Ultimen, despite some of whom originally also admired the League, were against it. Unlike the rest of the group, who had been enjoying their newfound fame, wealth, and popularity, Long Shadow earnestly wanted to join the Justice League to help more people and be a better hero. Long Shadow's efforts were constantly rebuffed and mocked by his teammates.
After helping the League, Long Shadow developed somewhat of a crush on Wonder Woman. While the attitudes of the rest of the Ultimen and the Justice League were at odds with each other, Long Shadow's humility and admiration earned a good friendship with Wonder Woman, who became a sort of mentor figure to him. They even worked together to take on Bizarro and Giganta, where he took out Giganta while Wonder Woman took on Bizarro.
Long Shadow had memories of having been born unusually sickly and small, and his parents, being scientists experimenting with growth hormones, had developed a growth formula that in time gave him the power to become a giant. However, Long Shadow later learned that these had been implanted memories and he had only been alive for about a year.
Then one night, the team was being held over for examination by Project Cadmus after Wind Dragon abruptly developed a new superpower in their earlier mission, surprising everyone (including himself). While waiting in their shared examination room, Long Shadow suddenly developed a new power of his own; Super-hearing. This allowed Long Shadow to eavesdrop on a conversation between Maxwell Lord and Professor Hamilton that revealed the true origin of the Ultimen; They were merely the current batch from a perennially doomed experiment of creating superpowered clones with implanted memories.
Upon discovering this devastating news, Long Shadow and the other Ultimen rebelled and tried to find answers. Unlike the others who went on a rampage, Long Shadow did what he could to begin rescuing civilians trapped in the office building that the Ultimen were attacking. During the ensuing battle, Long Shadow was forced to choose sides between his teammates or the Justice League. In the end, he was able to convince Wind Dragon to stand down, just as Wind Dragon was about to defeat Superman.
When Amanda Waller showed up to take the captured Ultimen away, the League chose to stand with Long Shadow, refusing to let Waller's goons take him away. Waller eventually relented, but not before taunting Batman and insinuating that there was more to Cadmus than meets the eye.
Though he was forced to part with his original team, Long Shadow finally achieved his dream when the Justice League formally inducted him into their ranks in gratitude for the courage he had shown. It is unknown how long he lived due to his cellular breakdown, but an earlier estimate by Professor Hamilton gave him as little time as a month. Presumably, he was able to live the rest of his short life as a hero among the Justice League, and he was given a hero's funeral.
Although Long Shadow was forever remembered as the Ultiman who truly became a hero, his name and legacy would not be entirely spotless as long as the notorious Project Cadmus continued to exist. After Long Shadow was out of the picture and presumed dead, Cadmus manufactured an army of Ultimen clones, including Long Shadow, in order to support Galatea's attack on the Justice League Watchtower. While retaining the Ultimen's powers and expertise in using them, the clones were essentially mindless, possessing no free will so as to be used only as living metahuman weapons of destruction (which, ironically, was what the original Ultimen feared the government wanted them to be all along). The clones served to distract the League while Galatea went after the Watchtower's reactor. However, the assault failed as the League successfully defended their home in a massive battle.
Powers and abilities
Long Shadow had the ability to grow beyond his normal size, much in the same way that super villainess Giganta did. It is unknown what his maximum size was, but he was able to stand one (giant) head over Giganta during a prison break. Despite his super-size ability, he usually fought at human size where his naturally large body frame gave him a degree of superhuman strength in his own right.
During this episode, Long Shadow developed a secondary power — super-hearing. This allowed him to overhear information from another room regarding the Cadmus Project when his other teammates couldn't. Developing a new superpower wouldn't be unusual for an Ultiman, as Wind Dragon had suddenly developed an ice-related "freeze wind" power during their battle with the magma creatures.
Before the Ultimen escaped their base, they discovered fully grown clones of themselves, inside of test tubes. During the Ultimen invasion of the Watchtower, dozens of Ultimen teams were unleashed against the Justice League when Superman went against the Cadmus Project but were defeated.
- Like the other members of the Ultimen, Long Shadow was based on an original character from the old SuperFriends show. In that respect, Long Shadow was a reference/update to Apache Chief, another giant-sized superhero of Native American origin. However, as an artificial human, Long Shadow has no genuine Native American background beyond his implanted memories. Also unlike his SuperFriends counterpart, he requires no phrases to activate his powers. (Apache Chief would shout the magic phrase "Eh-neeek-chock" to activate his power and grow to fifty feet tall.)
|Members of the Justice League|
|Batman • The Flash • The Green Lantern • Hawkgirl • J'onn J'onzz • Superman • Wonder Woman|
|Aquaman • The Atom • Atom-Smasher • Aztek • B'wana Beast • Black Canary • Blue Devil • Booster Gold • Captain Atom • Captain Marvel • Commander Steel • The Creeper • The Crimson Avenger • Crimson Fox • Dove • Dr. Fate • Dr. Light • Dr. Mid-Nite • Elongated Man • Etrigan • Fire • Green Arrow • Gypsy • Hawk • Hourman • Huntress • Ice • Long Shadow • Metamorpho • Mr. Terrific • Nemesis • Obsidian • Orion • Plastic Man • Question • The Ray • Red Tornado • Rocket Red • Sand • Shining Knight • Speedy • Stargirl • Starman • Steel • S.T.R.I.P.E. • Supergirl • Johnny Thunder • Thunderbolt • Vibe • Vigilante • Vixen • Waverider • Wildcat • Zatanna|