DC Animated Universe
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"You age gracefully."
"You have no idea...
J'onn J'onzz
— Vandal Savage

Vandal Savage, originally Vandar Adg during the age he was born in, was an immortal Metahuman who lusted for power and fought the Justice League for it.



25,000 years ago, his prehistoric tribe witnessed an asteroid fall to earth. While his fellow tribesmen ran away from it in fear, Vandar Adg walked up to it and slept by it, as the night was cold and it provided warmth. Where the rock came from was never known, but its radiation and heat transformed him for life. Only a couple decades later did he realize he would never age — while his brothers, sisters, and tribesmen grew elderly and eventually died, Vandal remained the same as he did since he exposed himself to the meteoroid — never changing physically. This transformation also granted him miraculous bodily abilities, such as instant healing. His impeded aging afforded him the chance for unlimited education, and he took advantage of this to learn as much as possible throughout the ages.[1]

World War II[]

The Justice League first encountered Vandal Savage when they returned to Earth and found it altered as a result of his tampering with history (apparently at the moment Savage's actions changed history, six of the League were protected by Green Lantern's ring as he moved the Javelin they had been using). Having invented a time machine, Savage sent a "gift" to his younger self during the era of World War II: a laptop computer containing schematics for advanced technology, and knowledge of the future that would help him overcome the Allies. Using this information, Savage supplanted Adolf Hitler, placing him in suspended animation, and took control of the Nazi German regime. With his highly advanced technology, as well as knowledge of future events such as D-Day, the Axis Powers easily defeated the Allies. As a result, Vandal Savage became the undisputed dictator of the world.

However, the Justice League (minus Batman) were unaffected by the time distortion, being protected by Green Lantern's shielding at the time. After arriving on Earth and meeting this timeline's version of Batman, the League traveled back in time through Savage's time portal and prevented Savage's plans from happening, managing to destroy the laptop. They also thwarted his attempted airborne invasion of the United States, and they assumed Savage was killed when one of his planes crashed into the Atlantic Ocean. In order to cope with Savage's failure and the loss of their leader, the Nazis reinstalled Hitler, and thus the war ended as an Allied victory. Due to the League's actions, Savage's reign was stopped in its infancy.

Dictator of Kaznia[]

Savage showed up again to face the Justice League in the early 21st century, initially posing as his own grandson to conceal his immortality from public knowledge. As the head of Kaznia's space program, he oversaw its substantial contribution to an International Space Station, and became sufficiently well-regarded by the King, Gustav, to become affianced to Princess Audrey, the heir to the throne. After poisoning Gustav with the help of a treacherous maid and an alliance with rogue Colonel Vox, Savage induced Audrey, his trusting fiancée, to take up her father's crown and rule Kaznia. This allowed Savage to reveal his plan to the world: an orbital rail gun mounted on the space station allowed him to fire asteroids at any location on Earth with pinpoint accuracy and devastating effect.

Luckily, Green Lantern, Flash and J'onn J'onzz boarded the station in time to set it to self-destruct — but not before a final asteroid was fired at Paris, France. On Earth, Batman and Wonder Woman freed Audrey from Savage's clutches, and Batman managed to change the asteroid's target to Savage's own headquarters. Civilians escaped, while Savage was buried under the rubble — but, like the immortal being he was, he rose up again, popped his bones back into place and lived on. Audrey had him arrested on the spot, promising he would pay for his crimes. Savage sneered that no one could kill him and invited her to do her worst, and Audrey intended to do just that.



The reformed Vandal Savage of 30,000 years into the future.

When Superman was inadvertently thrust forward 30,000 years into the future, by a blast from Toyman's disintegration device, he met the future Vandal Savage, who was the only person left alive on Earth. After he had been flung forward Lobo had replaced Superman on the team, and the team had, at some point, battled Savage while he controlled a weapon capable of controlling gravity. He defeated them and activated it, which shifted Earth's gravitational field and killed off the rest of the human race, while he once again survived. In cruel irony, Savage learned to be careful what he wished for. He had taken over Earth, but his despotism was not remarkable as there was no one left on Earth to rule over.

After 25,000 years of thirsting for power, Savage finally began to evolve in character as well as in strength and intellect. Over the next 30,000 years, his long isolation and self-reflection led him to see the error of his ways and the pointlessness of it all, Savage became a warm and humble person with a kind heart. He built himself a comfortable home in the ruins of Metropolis and kept himself busy with various hobbies, such as rediscovering agriculture, reading self-help books, restoring portions of the city through archaeology, and building several advanced inventions. Although one of these inventions was a starship capable of taking him off Earth, he decided to stay, feeling he deserved to be punished with his isolation.

Another had been a version of the time machine he had used before. He did not finish it, since it wouldn't allow him to travel back to any time when he was already alive. However, he gained a unique chance to undo his past mistakes when Superman came to the future. Since he had been moved from the past into the future, Superman was not present from that time forward and could use the time machine to return to a point after his time skip to stop the younger Savage.

Savage fades

"Thank you, my friend."

Together, they completed the machine, and Savage sent back the only friend he had made in millennia in order to stop his younger self from destroying the world. Later, Savage saw the world restore itself to life as he himself faded into the new timeline, thanking Superman for correcting his mistakes.

Powers and abilities[]

Savage was immortal, meaning he did not age and had healing abilities that allowed him to survive any injury that would maim or kill a normal human being.

Being a prehistoric man, he was already exceptionally strong before his transformation and had survived the hazards of his age to become a contributing member of his tribe. It was unknown, but likely that the meteoroid increased his strength to superhuman levels.

The transformation did not directly increase his knowledge, however indirectly as he took advantage of his long life to seek vast knowledge, a genius-level intellect, and great technological inventiveness, which includes the invention of a time machine.

Finally, because Savage had literally "all the time in the world," his plans, when sprung, were always well-prepared in advance and difficult to upset.

Background information[]

  • In the comics, Savage's original name was Vandar Adg, the chief of a Cro-Magnon tribe called the Blood Tribe. Also, his age was given as over 50,000 years, not 25,000 as stated in the series. He originally appeared in DC Comics during the 1940s, as an enemy of Alan Scott, the first Green Lantern, before becoming a recurring enemy to the Justice Society.
  • In the course of his long life, he claims to have ruled hundreds of civilizations under hundreds of names, including the Egyptian Pharaohs Khafre (Khafra) and Cheops (Khufu), Macedonian King Alexander the Great, Roman dictator Julius Caesar, Mongol Emperor Genghis Khan, as well as hundreds of other notorious historical figures, such as the pirate Blackbeard, Vlad Tepes (aka Count Dracula) and serial killer Jack the Ripper.


Justice League

Justice League Unlimited

Batman Beyond


  1. 1.0 1.1 McDuffie, Dwayne (writer) & Riba, Dan (director) (October 18, 2003). "Maid of Honor, Part I". Justice League. Season 2. Episode 7 (airdate). Episode 33 (production). Cartoon Network.

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