San Diego's First Superhero
Electrical Absorption: Super Bolt’s most basic Metahuman ability was to absorb and store electrical energy. He could store absorbed energy for several hours, and seemed to have no upper limit on how much he could absorb.
Electrical Projection: Super Bolt could project bolts of electricity from his hands (and only his hands), using the energy he had stored in his body.
Enhanced Resilience: Super Bolt possessed a very limited amount of enhanced healing and durability. This made him able to stand up to the rigors of superhuman combat over the short term, as well as allowing him to recover more quickly from injuries.
Law Enforcement Training: Thanks to his police training, Super Bolt was a skilled investigator and criminologist.
Veteran Superhero: Although he learned on the job, Super Bolt became a skilled superhero with knowledge in various fields from the numerous cases he worked on, as well as a skilled superhuman combatant.
Electrical Engineering: Super Bolt became a self-taught engineer, in an attempt to better use his powers.
Armored Costume: Although his initial costume was not, various incarnations of Super Bolt’s costume would include body armor and protective measures of various kinds.
Bolt Batteries: In order to keep himself from becoming ‘drained’ in the heat of battle, Super Bolt learned how to build special reusable electrical storage units (which he called ‘Bolt Batteries’) that he could quickly drain to keep fighting.
Metal (Former): Early in his career, Super Bolt would be painfully drained of his electricity whenever he touched a piece of grounded metal. He eventually learned to overcome this weakness through concentration.
Water: Super Bolt was unable to maintain a charge if completely soaked in water or similar fluid.
Electric Shielding: Super bolt had a hard time shocking foes who shielded themselves with nonconductive materials like rubber, or who used electromagnetism to alter the trajectory of his bolts.
Dennis Dougherty’s earliest memories were of watching Allied superheroes on newsreels when attending the cinema with his parents. Fascinated by these amazing do-gooders, Dennis wanted to be just like them, fighting against fascism and evil, standing up for the american way!
While Dennis’ childhood dream faded with time, his fascination never did. America was waking up to the notion that superhumans were here to stay, and that the world would be a very different place with them in it. Unable to become a superhero directly, Dennis did the next best thing he could think of, becoming a police officer in the San Diego Police Department.
Unfortunately, not everyone in the emerging superhuman population was interested in truth and justice. In the autumn of 1962, San Diego got its first ever superhuman, the notorious criminal calling himself The Electric Death. With his array of deadly lightning weapons, The Electric Death enacted a crime spree that left all of San Diego checking their bank accounts and deposit boxes.
Young Officer Dougherty was among one of the officers to respond to these robberies, and for attempting to stop the masked criminal, he was blasted with a beam from an electrical ‘death ray’. Dennis dropped to the ground, seemingly dead.
However, Dennis had more life in him than anyone knew. He was actually part of the new generation of Metahumans; a dormant AGM Metahuman, his potential for powers waiting for a near-death experience to awaken them. After Dennis’ ‘miraculous recovery’ in the hospital, he discovered that he could absorb and store electrical energy, projecting it back out from his hands as lightning bolts!
Imbued with ‘strange powers’ from the ‘mysterious energies’ of Electric Death’s ray gun, Dennis knew that he must use his powers for the good of his city. He put together a costume, and became Super Bolt, the Electric Protector of San Diego!
As a masked vigilante, Super Bolt’s public reception was initially mixed. Unlike the Allied superheroes, Super Bolt worked without government sanction or oversight; he could be anyone underneath that mask, even a criminal! However, as time wore on, his good deeds eventually won the public over.
Super Bolt acted as a hero for many years, enjoying a fruitful career (including an unlicensed cartoon series based on his exploits, called The Adventures Of Super Bolt). However, it came to an end in 1984, when he battled The Electric Death for the last time. Super Bolt had gotten Electric Death help for his Tesla impulses some years before, but the aging supervillain began to suffer from Alzheimers. Forgetting his reconciliation with his former foe, Electric Death wired himself into an electrical battlesuit with a damaged AI that began to rampage across the city.
The battlesuit killed scores of people as it raged across San Diego. Super Bolt was unable to stop the battlesuit without killing his old foe and now friend. Emotionally devastated at the toll the city paid and the sad ending to Electric Death’s life, Super Bolt hung up his mask and retired from superheroics.
As Dennis, he also retired from the SDPD, wishing only to be left alone in his remaining years. Although he had successfully kept his double life a secret for all those years, he did so at a price; he had no one close to him. Friends and romantic partners had to be kept at arms length, for fear of discovering his secret, or being potentially targeted by his enemies.
Super Bolt died of a heart attack in 1994, aged 55, dying alone in his home. His heart attack was thought to have been caused by physical stress caused by his superhero career. He was honored post mortem by the city of San Diego, remembered as its first (and some would say best) hero, having saved countless lives, inspiring others to do good.
As Super Bolt wasn’t a government registered hero, he was ineligible to be buried at the Hall Of Heroes at Fort Valhalla. Instead, the City of San Diego created a special burial memorial for him in Balboa (and later Memorial) Park, The Tomb Of Super Bolt.