Superhero Sunday: Silhouette – Black Cambodian Shadow Melter

Silhouette in New Warriors

Silhouette (aka Silhouette Chord) – Silhouette’ Chord’s origin story is super shady, but also not too far off from what happened to many women in Cambodia around the Vietnam War. Silhouette is the daughter of a Black  American soldier Andrew Chord, whose Army troupe came across a temple in Cambodia in 1966 while they were on a mission there.

At the temple, the men discovered a villainous woman Tai, who restrained the men and convinced them to marry the women in her cult in order that they bear children with powers to rule the world. Most of the men agree, and Silhouette’s father-to-be takes his new Cambodian bride and Tai’s own daughter Miyami back to the U.S., where they have two children.

Right? Shady.

But anyway, after Miyami faked her and her children’s’ deaths to escape the influence of Tai, she left the kids to be raised in Chinatown in New York.

Silhouette in action with the New Warriors
Silhouette in action with the New Warriors

Her powers manifest as an ability to melt into the shadows, becoming a shadow herself, and to teleport via shadows. Basically she can “Bamf!” etc. like NightCrawler.  Mastering these abilities, she becomes simply Silhouette and she and her brother Aaron (Midnight Fire) take to the streets of Chinatown as vigilantes.

During one of these jaunts, Silhouette is shot by police gun fire and she becomes paralyzed, unable to walk. This doesn’t stop her though. She dons arm-braced crutches and leg braces to stay in the fight, becoming an expert at fighting with them and often wielding them as weapons. She becomes a welcome addition to the superhero team the New Warriors.

Long-haired Silhouette looking angsty

She first appeared in New Warriors #2 in 1990, and we haven’t seen much of her since a brief appearance in Secret Avengers in 2010, during which she declared her stance against the Superhuman Registration Act.

Silhouette, her brother Midnight Fire, and her later lover Night Thrasher, son of her father’s Army buddy, are the only other children we know of that were born from Tai’s trickery. They are unique as the only Black Cambodian superheroes in comics.

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2 thoughts on “Superhero Sunday: Silhouette – Black Cambodian Shadow Melter”

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