So I’ve been seeing a lot of people in the YJ tag going “Who the hell are the New Gods?” “Why are they NEW?” “What’s their connection to Sphere?” “This was just a filler episode” “What is up with that Power Ranger Mecha thing they did?” “I’M CONFUSED!”
I’m not going to go much in-depth about them, this is pretty much a quick 101 (and its already a lengthy read) on who the New Gods are and it explains some stuff from YJ. If you want something more in-depth read the New God article in Wikipedia.
The whole New Gods concept was created by Jack Kirby (co-creator of Captain America, FF4, X-Men, Hulk, and Marvel’s Thor among other characters) lets see how can I explain them… New Gods are the people of New Genesis and Apokolips. The New Gods are basically a race of godly beings that inhabit the planets of New Genesis and Apokolips.
The reason why they call themselves New Gods is because they along with New Genesis and Apokolips came to being when the Gods from old myths died. It is heavily implied in the first issue from the old comics that they came to be after Ragnarok happened.
NEW GENESIS AND APOKOLIPS
New Genesis: Is a planet inhabited by the peaceful and I guess you can call them the good New Gods. They are ruled by a being called Highfather which is pretty much the Odin to their Asgard except he’s more spiritual and peaceful. The planet is full of life, it is surrounded by forests and beautiful flora and fauna, the only urban place in there is Supertown which floats in the planet’s surface as to not to affect the ecosystem (Supertown is also were most of the New Gods live). There are other being in the planet who share it with the new Gods, like the Bug people who the New Gods initially thought as subhuman but eventually came to know and like.
Apokolips: This is the planet of the bad New Gods, this is the planet Desaad (ugly guy with the hood and deformed arm that was in YJ) comes from. This planet is dark, mostly barren of life, full of lava, and is pretty much a dystopian horror. It is ruled by a tyrant named Darkseid (One of the most powerful villains in the DC universe), who every inhabitant of Apokolips is blindly obedient to (mainly because they’re conditioned to fear and respect him, also he’s really fucking powerful and his omega beam is crazy as fuck). Apokolips is the worst place you can go to, when an Apokaliptian is born he is taken to a place called the “orphanage” which is a training facility were Apokalip’s children go to be broken, and they either die or become ruthless fierce warriors. It is run by Granny Goodness whose name is ironic since she beats them, humiliates them, tortures them (physically and psychologically), makes them fight each other to the death, whips them, etc… All while she tells them “Granny loves you”.
Desaad: This guy is quite nasty. He is Darkseid’s second in command and his chief master torturer. He is big on doing crazy science experiments and takes great pleasure in torturing people. So much pleasure in fact that he had invented thousand upon thousands of torture devices each one with its own unique function of torture.
Other inhabitants of Apokolips: The Female Furies commanded by Granny Goodness and are the elite warriors of Apokolips, Darkseid’s mindless soldiers the Parademons, and other people that are kidnapped from other worlds which along with other worthless Apokoliptians are called ‘lowlies’. Lowlies are the lowest class in Apokolips and they are used for sport, are constantly mistreated, not to mention most of them are abused until they die.
Darkseid and his minions are a big deal BTW, the Justice League has never been able to truly defeat them, only hold them back. Mainly because Darkseid is near omnipotent and his minions populate the whole planet, and most of them are brainwashed to do anything for Darkseid’s favor.
The people of New Genesis and Apokolips, are pretty much locked eternal war with each other. They had a peace treaty were Highfather gave his son to Darkseid and Darkseid gave one of his sons to Highfather. Darkseid’s son Orion grew up to be a warrior and has a short-fuse, but a good guy. He was prophesied to be the one that kills Darkseid (which is why Darkseid wants him dead). Highfather’s son was named Scott Free by Granny Goodness (as a joke since he was a slave that was trapped in her Orphanage), Scott had natural talent for escaping and overcoming seemingly impossible traps and often overcame any obstacle Granny put on him. While trying to escape the orphanage. One day he and another female fury called Big Barda eventually escaped Apokolips which prompts Darkseid to call off the truce between Apokolips and New Genesis. Scott eventually became the Super hero and escape artist known as Mister Miracle and he with his wife Barda are members of the Justice League.
Forever People: They consist of Vykin, Bear, Serifan, Dreamer and Moonrider, and are a team of teenagers from from New Genesis. they are pretty straightforward, and peace loving and profess non-violence as a creed which is why the avoided a lot of conflicts with Superboy (however they won’t hesitate from kicking bad guy butt). In the comics their whole mission is to beat Darkseid in the discovery of the Anti-Life Equation and end the war between Apokolips and New Genesis.
Here’s series of blog posts explaining the Forever People, kind of lengthy but a really interesting read.
BTW Young Justice is their first animated appearance :)
Infinity Man: When the going gets tough, the Forever People become one with the source and summon him. In the comics he wasn’t really a controllable robot like they made him out in YJ, and his relationship with the Forever people was less of a Megazord and Power Rangers and more of a Captain Planet and the Planeteers (except that in the Forever people’s case they disappeared).
NEW GOD TECHNOLOGY
Motherbox: In the words of Sonny Summo “Motherbox is more than a machine. If Gods made I-Pods that were alive? Way beyond that." Made by the scientist Himon in New Genesis. They are pretty much living computers and used by New Genesis inhabitants to teleport, open boom tubes, energy manipulation, and heal the injured. They communicate with a PING! sound that is understood by their users. In YJ Vykin of the Forever People has a Motherbox and uses it to heal Sphere. Also Motherboxes have a unique relationship with their owners, they are loyal to them and unconditionally love them and they tend to self-destruct when their owners die (which I think was one of the reasons the Forever People were a bit reluctant to leave Sphere with Superboy especially since it had their Motherbox within).
Fatherbox: The Apokolips version of the Motherbox, and makes a TING! sound when it communicates. In YJ Deesad uses a Fatherbox to corrupt the Infinity Man and at the end it was what Wolf destroyed.
Boom tube: An extra-dimensional point-to-point tunnel-like portal used to travel from one place to another. Boom tubes are used by New Gods to travel interstellar distances quickly. Their name comes from the tube-like shape of the portals and the sound they make when they appear which is a loud BOOM.
Examples of boomtubes can be found when Sphere arrives to earth, when the Forever people first appear, and when Intergang retreats.
They also made many appearance throughout the DCAU cartoons, as a matter in fact Superman TAS’s “Apokolips…Now!” and Justice League Unlimited’s "Twilight" and "The Ties That Bind"episodes are a good introductions to the New Gods.
Super-Cycle: Sentient vehicle by New Genesis, in the comic it was found by the YJ and named by them. The super-cycle was capable of flight, teleportation, and had the power to phase through solid matter. In the show it is what Superboy’s Sphere turns into.
New Genesphere: I don’t think I’ve seen any of this in the comics or previous shows, the whole Sphere thing seems to be made for the YJ show.
OTHER IMPORTANT STUFF
The Source: “A cosmic essence or being that is the ‘source’ of all that exists”. They never really say exactly what the source is in the comics, but think of it like their own version of the force. Highfather always consults the source for wisdom and some new Gods use it to draw strength and power from it. The Forever People in YJ became one with the source to form the Infinity-Man.
The Source Wall: A wall in the DC Universe that lies on the edge of the known universe. Beyond the wall lies the source. The wall is passable but so far no one has been able to do it and all of those who have tried have been trapped in it. Among those trapped are the the bodies of evil creatures, would-be conquerors and curiosity seekers from all across the universe.
Anti-Life Equation: The equation for total control over the free will of sentient beings, Darkseid is looking for this equation as it will make him supreme rule of everyone and everything in existence.
In Final Crisis Darkseid finds the Anti-Life equation which is given as loneliness + alienation + fear + despair + self-worth ÷ mockery ÷ condemnation ÷ misunderstanding x guilt x shame x failure x judgment n=y where y=hope and n=folly, love=lies, life=death, self=dark side and by inserting into people’s minds Darkseid “gives them the mathematical certainty that life, hope and freedom are all pointless.” and thus can make them his willing subjects.
I am not sure why Dreamer refers to the residents of Apokolips as God of Anti-Life, she probably meant that they were Gods of enslavement and destruction while New Genesis favored freedom and life.
So yeah now that the team has Sphere and a Motherbox capable of Boom tube transportation, not to mention the Light is in cahoots with Apokolips, yeah things will get pretty interesting!