Wednesday, September 18, 2019

Who's Who: Tornado Twins

Tornado Twins
by Russell & Siskoid

Real Name: Don and Dawn Allen
Super-Power(s): Superspeed
Planet of Origin: Earth
Relationship to Legion: Allies/Precursors

Legion Log
The Tornado Twins were a good-looking and well-behaved brother and sister team who became darlings of mass media in Metropolis late in the 30th Century. They burst onto the scene with unspecified super-powers and quickly began to respond to emergencies in a flash, more efficiently even than the Legion could. Although neither would admit to anything other than their real names,  they were photogenic and quick with "sound bites". Karate Kid especially became jealous of the Tornado Twins, who stymied the Legion by "stealing" their spotlight in a somewhat antagonistic way.

After several days of this, the Tornado Twins and the Legion actually came to blows, and the Legion was defeated (based on them not knowing the true nature of the Tornado Twins' powers).

On the UP-sponsored Flash Day held at the end of the week, Don and Dawn Allen admitted publicly that they were descendants of Barry Allen and that they had been using super-speed. To help celebrate their renowned ancestor on the inauguration of his special day, the Tornado Twins had arranged with a biogenetic scientist to temporarily recreate in them the super-speed abilities of their ancestor (with no adverse side effects, apparently). They had then gone about trying to raise awareness of the Flash by "stealing" the spotlight from the Legion. They apologized to the Legion for their "grand-standing," saying it was all for a good cause.

After their temporary super-speed powers faded away, the Allens remained friends with the Legion, even attending the wedding of Duo Damsel and Bouncing Boy.

The last time the Tornado Twins crossed paths with the Legion in a notable way in the original continuity was when a robotic assassin attempted to kill them. The robot had been programmed by Professor Ivo to kill all descendants of the Justice League. This attempt was of course thwarted by the Legion.

During the so-called Five-Year Gap, Dominator-controlled EarthGov had the Tornado Twins executed for suspected sedition.

After Zero Hour, the Tornado Twins are the children of Barry Allen and Iris West, born to the couple during their time in the future. Don and Dawn are raised in an era of extreme xenophobia, where metahuman activity is unwelcome. Growing up hearing the stories of their heroic father from their mother, and having inherited their father's super-speed, they decide to operate as superheroes in secret. During this era, they meet a time-travelling Wally West, who inspires them to fight the 30th Century's prejudice against metahumans, and fought a secret Dominator invasion 15 years before such events happened in the previous timeline.

By the time of the Legion's Reboot, the Tornado Twins are retired and married. Don Allen marries Meloni Thawne; they are the parents of Bart Allen (AKA Impulse). Dawn Allen marries Jeven Ognats, and gives birth to Jenni Ognats, who would become the Legionnaire XS. President Thawne, a corrupt descendant of the supervillain Professor Zoom, arranged for the Twins' murder several months after their children's birth.

After Infinite Crisis, the Tornado Twins were born on Earth-Prime, and when they and their families (Bart and Jenni having already been born) became the target of Professor Zoom, who was attempting to sabotage Don and Meloni's marriage, both families escaped to Earth-247 (the Reboot timeline) and the Twins died soon after in unknown circumstances. Both cousins were reunited with their grandmother Iris, and both also rapidly aged to teenagers within days, one to become Impulse, the other XS. Notably, Wally West's twin children would also become known as the Tornado Twins.

After Rebirth, a confrontation with Eobard Thawne showed a future in which the Tornado Twins were villains. They hated Barry because his duties as Flash had caused him to spend almost no time with them. It is later revealed to be false, as their displayin the Flash Museum correctly shows them as heroes, not villains.

The Tornado Twins are referenced in the Batman: The Brave and the Bold animated series; in the episode "Mayhem of the Music Meister", their names appear along with a lot of other unrealized/obscure team-up possibilities. They are also alluded to on the Young Justice animated series; in the episode "Bloodlines", Bart Allen touches Iris West's pregnant stomach and playfully refers to the unborn children as "Dad" and "Aunt Dawn", and they make an actual appearance in Young Justice: Outsiders. Tangentially, Jessica Parker Kennedy portrays Nora West-Allen, the future daughter of Barry Allen and Iris West on The Flash television series, an amalgamation of Dawn Allen and XS.

Important Tornado Twins stories:

Adventure Comics #373
(reprinted in The Legion of Super-Heroes Archives Vol. 8
and Showcase Presents: The Legion Vol. 4)
 The debut of the Tornado Twins

Superboy/Legion of Super-Heroes #200
The Tornado Twins attend the wedding of Duo Damsel and Bouncing Boy

Legion of Super-Heroes Annual (v2) #1
The Tornado Twins are targeted by a former Justice League foe

Legion of Super-Heroes (v4) #17
The Twins are executed by the Dominators

Flash (v2) #92
Don Allen is Bart Allen's father

Legion of Super-Heroes (v4) Annual #6
Dawn Allen is XS's mother; the Twins fought the Dominators some 15 years before

Flash (v2) #114
Wally West meets the Tornado Twins

The Life Story of the Flash GN
The Tornado Twins are part of the Flash's legacy

Flash (v2) #148
The Tornado Twins meet Wally West again
Final Crisis: Legion of 3 Worlds #3
The complicated multiversal history of the Tornado Twins (click for bigger image)
Flash: Rebirth #1-2
Eobard Thawne shows the Flash a future in which his children are villains

Batman: The Brave and the Bold animated series

The Tornado Twins are referenced

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