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Who is DC’s Mister Terrific and has he ever appeared in the DCU?

It's fair play for what might be the DCU's newest hero.

Mister Terrific DC Comics
Image via DC Comics

With James Gunn and Peter Safran taking the reins at DC, some lesser-known DC characters will undoubtedly be brought into the forefront like Gunn did with characters in The Suicide Squad and through his Marvel work in Guardians of the Galaxy. Since rising to the top of DC’s ranks at the beginning of November, Gunn has posted images of two lesser-known DC characters, posting Lobo last week and posting Mister Terrific more recently.

DC fans who only watch the movies might not be aware of DC’s Mister Terrific, as he has never appeared in any of the films. So let’s take a look at Mister Terrific and his history in DC Comics, and let you know if he has appeared in the DC Universe so far. 

Who is Mister Terrific?

Mister Terrific is a superhero created by John Ostrander and Tom Mandrake who was first introduced in Spectre Vol. 3 issue #54 in June 1997. As far as DC superheroes go, he is definitely one of the newer ones of the bunch. His real name is Michael Holt in DC Comics and in addition to possessing a genius-level intellect, he is also an Olympic Gold Medalist, usually in the decathlon. He does not possess any powers that a human would not have, he is not an alien and was not dropped into a radioactive barrel of Terrific-sludge. 

If you were to pick a counterpart on the Marvel side, he is very similar to Tony Stark, except instead of creating metal suits, he has his T-Sphere technology. His T-Spheres are his own designs and he can control them with his mind or his voice, using them as investigative aids or in combat to take out his enemies. In addition to his T-Spheres, he also has his T-Mask, which allows him to communicate with his T-Spheres, instantly apply his costume, and be rendered invisible to electronic detection.

His suit is one of the most iconic designs in DC Comics, often appearing in a black and white jacket with red trim, with ‘Fair Play’ embroidered on the side, with his T-Mask concealing his secret identity as Michael Holt. The word ‘Terrific’ is also embroidered on the back of his jacket. Holt also runs a company called Holt Industries and he is a millionaire. Mister Terrific is usually a member of the Justice Society of America and he has been the head of the team multiple times. 

Has Mister Terrific appeared in the DC Universe?

Mister Terrific in Arrow Echo Kellum
Photo via Warner Bros. Television

While Mister Terrific has not been in any of the live-action films, he has had television appearances in the DCU, as Mister Terrific was introduced in the CW Arrowverse in Arrow, where he was played by Echo Kellum. He was in the show for a few seasons, although he did not often suit up as Mister Terrific and he had more screen time as the tech genius, Curtis Holt – yes they changed his name. While his costumed self was a rare appearance, Mister Terrific’s costume was similar to his costume in the comic books. Michael Holt has also been in multiple animated movies and television shows over the years. 

Now that you know all about Mister Terrific, the only question is why Gunn posted a picture of the hero on Twitter. You have to wonder if the character is going to be featured in a group film, like a future Justice Society of America movie, a solo Mister Terrific movie, or another series featuring the character. Interestingly, Gunn’s post is not the only thing pointing to Mister Terrific being a frontrunner for a DCU project as he was created by John Ostrander. Gunn was influenced by Ostrander’s run on Suicide Squad for his own film, The Suicide Squad. He obviously likes Ostrander’s work, so much so that he even gave the creator a cameo in the film. 

It would not be too surprising if we were to get a Justice Society of America movie soon, especially as their debut in Black Adam was well received. We could get Hawkman (Aldis Hodge), Atom Smasher (Noah Centineo), Cyclone (Quintessa Swindell), or maybe even Doctor Fate (Pierce Brosnan), to fight alongside Mister Terrific. Black Adam certainly seemed to be setting up a few different DC projects, including a Justice Society-led spinoff. But as for any official confirmation as to which characters James Gunn will be using in the DCU in the future, we will, unfortunately, have to wait and see.

Tristyn Akbas
About the author

Tristyn Akbas

Tristyn Akbas is an SEO writer for We Got This Covered. He graduated from the University of New South Wales, with a Bachelor's Degree in Film and Writing. Tristyn specializes in the geekier side of writing and is always up to date on the latest movies, TV, comic books, and video games. He particularly likes anything superhero or horror-related, and in his free time, you'll find him earning PlayStation trophies.