|Real name||Doris Zuel|
|Debut||Wonder Woman v1 #9 (June 1944)|
|Created by||William Moulton Marston|
|Affiliations|| Injustice League|
|Abilities||Can grow to gigantic size, Strength increases in proportion with her size|
|Played by||see In other media|
Giganta was introduced as a foe of the Golden Age Wonder Woman, first appearing in Wonder Woman #9 (volume 1). In the story, a villainous scientist named Professor Zool artificially evolves an ape named Giganta into a malicious red-haired strongwoman. Giganta is ultimately subdued and captured by Wonder Woman and taken to Transformation Island for rehabilitation. In issue #28, she joins a rebellion of prisoners held on the island, thereby becoming a member of the criminal team Villainy Inc.
Giganta is not seen again in the comics until 1966, in Wonder Woman #163 (volume 1), in which her origin is revamped to include another member of Wonder Woman's rogues gallery, Doctor Psycho. This appearance also premiered a short-lived update to her look, giving her waist-length blond hair and an even larger physical stature. It would eventually be revealed that this Giganta belonged to Earth-Forty effectively removing her from Earth-One continuity.
In the current DC Universe, Giganta is Dr. Doris Zeul (a name that tips its hat to Professor Zool, a key figure in the Golden Age Giganta's origin). Appearing in the modern continuity for the first time in 1997 in Wonder Woman #127 (volume 2), Zeul captures a comatose Wonder Woman and holds her at a secret research facility. Suffering from a fatal blood disease, Zeul plans to use an experimental machine to transfer her "life-essence" into Wonder Woman's body. Interrupted by Cassandra Sandsmark halfway through the experiment, Zeul seemingly dies. Her assistant Branson discovers that Zeul is in fact not dead, but instead had her essence stored in the transference machine's buffer module, which then channeled her consciousness into one of the lab's test animals, a gorilla named Giganta.
Desperate to return her mind to a human body, Zeul/Giganta then abducts a comatose circus strongwoman named Olga. Though the subsequent events have never been detailed in the comics, Zeul apparently succeeds in transferring her mind into Olga's body, and, presumably, Olga's mind into the body of the gorilla.
When she next appears, the red-haired Giganta demonstrates the ability to grow to gigantic size, like the animated Super Friends version. In Wonder Woman #1 (volume 3), it was revealed that Olga already possessed this power when Zeul stole her body. The source of the ability is unknown, though it may be related to a shaman who placed Olga in a coma prior to her abduction by Zeul. Whatever the case, the ability appears to be mystical in nature, as Giganta has been shown (in The All-New Atom) to be aligned with the forces of magic. More proof of her powers being mystical in nature is the fact that Black Alice was able to tap into her powers.
Following her transformation, Giganta allies herself with Queen Clea and the modern incarnation of Villainy Inc. in an attempt to conquer the lost world of Skartaris. Villainy Inc. is defeated by Wonder Woman, but Giganta is subsequently seen as a member of several criminal groups, including the Secret Society of Super Villains and Injustice League Unlimited. As part of the Society, she takes part in the "Battle of Metropolis", a confrontation with multiple heroes, including Elasti-Girl, the size-changing member of the Doom Patrol. The Society ultimately loses this battle.
When Diana Prince noted that Giganta's intellect reduces as she grows in size, compelling the villain to become less rational and more prone to violence, she was corrected by her colleagues in the Department of Metahuman Affairs. They implied that Giganta has overcome that limitation and retains her full intelligence at any size, a theory backed up in the conclusion to the Who is Wonder Woman? storyline.
One Year Later
Giganta, along with The Cheetah and Doctor Psycho, engaged in a battle with Donna Troy (who has assumed the identity of Wonder Woman one year after the events of Infinite Crisis), as part of a search for, as they term it, the "real" Wonder Woman (Diana of Themyscira). In the following issue, the villains continue their quest, holding Troy hostage in order to draw Diana out for a rescue attempt; they also contend with the current Wonder Girl, Robin, and (though they don't realize it at first), Diana herself, in the guise of government agent Diana Prince. In issue 3, Giganta and her allies also battle Hercules, with the giantess being felled by the legendary champion.
Giganta has also appeared in the pages of the The All New Atom, currently employed as a regular teacher at Ivy Town's University. Infected and controlled by M'Nagalah, the monstrous Cancer god, she was sent to seduce and capture, Ryan Choi, the new Atom, in the process even going so far as to swallow the miniature hero alive (he escapes, and also discovers that she has a tongue piercing). Now free of M'Nagalah's control, a seemingly repentant Dr. Zeul retains her position at Ivy University and has approached Ryan for a second chance, despite the bizarre circumstances of their first meeting.
Before their second date, the Atom is approached by Wonder Woman on behalf of the Department of Metahuman Affairs and asked to wear a wire on his date with Dr. Zeul. After professing her desire to reform, she is informed that Ryan is wearing a wire and tears off the roof of the restaurant to see Wonder Woman and Ryan talking - unaware that Ryan had removed the wire. A fight between Wonder Woman and Giganta ensues. Wonder Woman quickly managed to knock Giganta out but Ryan intervenes to stop her from beating her further, after admitting she had lost her temper - they realize that Dr. Zeul has disappeared. Whether she heard or saw Ryan's actions to stop her from getting further injuries is yet to be seen.
Giganta was seen as a member of Libra's Secret Society of Super Villains, and at the end of Final Crisis #3 she is shown as a thrall of Darkseid alongside several other super-powered women. She is now called Gigantrix. Over the course of the series she fights as one of the incarnations of the Female Furies with Wonder Woman, Batwoman and Catwoman. She's possessed by the spirit of the fury Stompa and only freed when Supergirl smashes the skull-and-crossbones mask from her face. In Final Crisis Doctor Light stated he was going on a date with Giganta, although there is evidence to prove he was not boasting of lying (a fact implied by his continuing remarks to the presumed sexual prowess needed to satisfy her). In Wonder Woman #36, Giganta's attacked by Diana while on her way to a date with Ryan Choi, implying that their relationship's survived despite earlier difficulties. Mellower than in her appearances in the All-New Atom series, she seems to accept & respect the shortcomings brought by their different lifestyles, going so far to help Wonder Woman in a mission, reasoning that, with Ryan being a superheroes, the should both be used to putting their heroics in front of their private lives.
Giganta was a member of the Secret Society, working with Vandal Savage and Signalman as they track the mysterious Pandora. When they found Pandora, Giganta attacked but was defeated and blinded in one eye. She appeared later, recovered, as she and other villains attacked Steve Trevor.
Powers and Abilities
Giganta has the ability to increase her size from roughly 6'6 to several hundred feet. These powers seemed to have been given to her magically since if it were by science she would not be able to achieve that size. It is presumed she works out since Giganta also features strength greater than that of her body size. Her strength is higher than an average woman's but it is not superhuman until she begins growing. Giganta is also a brilliant scientist who now retains her full intelligence at any size from normal to maximum.
In other media
Super Friends TV series
Giganta was first seen outside comics as a powerful member of the Legion of Doom in the 1970s animated series Super Friends. In the TV series, she has the ability to grow to giant size (with accompanying superhuman strength) simply by willing it (at the time, she did not yet possess this ability in the comics). She typically dresses in a leopard skin two-piece loincloth, presumably treating them so that they grow with her when she uses her powers to achieve her gigantic stature. She wears large, bangle-like bracelets and anklets, and she is always barefoot. Her muscular body is a side effect of her powers.
In the Challenge of the Super Friends TV series, it was revealed that Giganta was a normal woman who was horseriding when she witnessed Apache Chief using magic dust. The latter used it to grow larger so he could fight off a grizzly bear. Giganta stole the dust and used it on herself, gaining the ability to transform into a powerful, 50 foot tall giantess. The dust not only gave the two size changing powers, but influences personality as well. Because Apache Chief was brave when using it he became one hundred times more brave. Because Giganta had evil thoughts, it made her more evil.
She later appeared in the Super Friends short episodes "Revenge of Doom" and "Two Gleeks Are Deadlier Than One".
Giganta was voiced by Ruth Forman.
Legends of the Superheroes
In keeping with the show's decidedly low budget, she doesn't showcase her ability to grow in size, and instead bends a prop steel bar around Riddler's neck for a "superstrength" effect.
She returns in "The Roast" and is interviewed by "Rhoda Rooter" (who is an impression of gossip host Rona Barrett). Rooter interviews Giganta and the Atom about their recent engagement.
Justice League TV series
Giganta also appeared in the Justice League animated series in an episode featuring the Secret Society, with an origin somewhat similar to that in the comics. In this version, she was a small female ape transformed by Grodd into a human woman who can grow to giant proportions but Grodd referenced that he was able to offer Clayface the best of both worlds (implying that Giganta was originally able to grow in size).
In "Secret Society", Giganta helped The Shade escape from the Justice League. During her first confrontation with the Justice League, she defeated Wonder Woman and even toppled the Man of Steel. Later at Gotham Field, Superman almost defeated her but she manipulated him by asking "Wouldn't hit a woman, would you?" Fortunately, Wonder Woman had no problem delivering the final blow.
Justice League Unlimited
In the episode "Ultimatum" she attempted to break Grodd out of prison with the help of Bizarro; she manipulated him by playing his girlfriend. She was defeated by Wonder Woman and the similarly powered Ultimen member Long Shadow (who was himself a thinly veiled homage to Apache Chief).
She then becomes Grodd's devout follower and has, in Justice League Unlimited, become a returning member of the new Secret Society (based on the Legion of Doom). While on a mission for Grodd as a backup, she ended up comatose after the Martian Manhunter tried to read her mind. However, in the episode "The Great Brain Robbery", Giganta is seen among the rest of the Secret Society, apparently fully recovered. When the Secret Society became divided between Luthor and Grodd, she sided with Luthor, angry with Grodd for shutting off her mind and cheating on her with Tala. At the end of the series, Giganta sacrifices a few seconds of her allotted five minute head start reward (for helping the League) and plants a fast kiss on the Flash. Giganta is voiced by Jennifer Hale.
Unlike her more brutish characterization in the comics, in Justice League Unlimited, Giganta acts in a more feminine manner, but is still eager for battle, according to Hale.
She appeared in the spin-off comic book Justice League Unlimited #38, trying to go straight so she could spend time with The Flash. She reveals her intentions angrily once he announces that he is going on a date.
- ↑ Crisis on Infinite Earths: Absolute Edition