How did Hawkman get his powers? ‘Black Adam’ character origin, explained

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Photo via Warner Bros. Pictures

Warning: The article contains spoilers for Black Adam.

Now that Black Adam has made its way into theaters, the Dwayne Johnson-starring film has brought with it an entire superhero team in the Justice Society, whose leader is Aldis Hodge’s Carter Hall, better known as Hawkman, but where did the mace-wielding vigilante get his powers in the first place?

Though Johnson plays the titular role in the latest installment of the DC Extended Universe, Black Adam also introduces the world to four other superpowered beings: Hodge’s Hawkman, Pierce Brosnan’s Kent Nelson/Doctor Fate, Quintessa Swindell’s Maxine Hunkel/Cyclone; and Noah Centineo’s Al Rothstein/Atom Smasher.

Black Adam doesn’t necessarily walk audiences through the origins of each Justice Society member. However, there’s enough exposition in the film itself and some prequel comic books that tie into the movie to give fans a sense of where these heroes came from.

How did Hawkman get his powers?

In the case of Hawkman, he started out as an archeologist and museum curator named Carter Hall. At some point, he became the vessel for the reincarnation of Khufu, who in DC comics is an ancient Egyptian prince. There was a real-life Egyptian pharaoh called Khufu as well, and he led the ancient civilization during the 25th century BCE, according to Encylopedia Britannica.

With Carter taking on the persona of Hawkman, he recruits other superpowered beings—including Doctor Fate and Atom Smasher—to form the Justice Society.

Some of the powers Hawkman has includes flight, reincarnation, super-strength, super-speed, super-durability, and accelerated healing, according to the DCEU Wiki. Using a rare and exotic mineral known as Nth metal, Hawkman’s helmet, wings, and spiked mace grants the hero special abilities. This includes protective properties and the mace that allows him to critically weaken enemies without killing them.

If you want to learn more about Hawkman, there is a Black Adam prequel comic book, Black Adam – The Justice Society Files: Hawkman #1, available on DC’s website.

Of course, you can check out Black Adam now at a theater near you.