1468 - M'gann M'orzz is hatched on Mars, the child of the White Martian terrorists that scorched the Martian surface. She is placed into stasis along with her tribe.
3 years ago - Human astronauts disturb the Martian stasis chamber, and M'gann's tribe go to Earth posing as alien heroes the Hyperclan. they attack the Justice League, decimating it's ranks, forcing Martian Manhunter to assemble a new League. When he finds M'gann, he takes her in to begin teaching her in both the Martian and Human tradition. She meets Emma, the daughter of J'onn's friend King Faraday and models much of her human behavior after her.
1 year ago - M'gann makes her first public appearance as Miss Martian when she, Natasha Irons & Traci Thirteen save Superman from Metallo. J'onn J'onzz introduces her to the Teen Titans. She goes with them into space to save Donna Troy.
In a world where most of the main superheroes all have teenage sidekicks, it's kind of amazing that it took as long as it did for Martian Manhunter, supposedly the heart and soul of the Justice League, to have one of his own. The truth, though, is that while J'onn is a hugely important character to the League, he's actually never had an incredibly strong mythology of his own. It took some pretty clever lateral thinking from Geoff Johns to come up with the Maiden from Mars, but in doing so he created a legacy character brimming with potential.
Miss Martian's Comic History
Following 2005's Infinite Crisis, all ongoing series published by DC jumped ahead 1 year in their continuity, and most of the books suffered for it, Teen Titans included. It was set up that during that one year jump the Titans took on over a dozen new members, many of them completely new character concepts spun out of existing heroes. One of those character concepts was Miss Martian, apparently a sidekick for the Martian Manhunter. Of all those new characters M'gann was one of the only ones who managed to stick around as a full-fledged new member of the Titans, and was evenually tequipped with a serviceable backstory when we discovered that she was actually a White Martian. She would continue to serve on and off for the remainder of the book's run, although she never quite made it beyond the role of well-liked side character.
It wasn't until 2010 when the animated series Young Justice began to air on Cartoon Network that Miss Martian really became the fantastic fan-favorite character she is today. Her character on the series filled a role similar to Wonder Girl in the original Young Justice comic, but her personality was completely faithful to her own appearances in the Teen Titans.
DC would reset it's entire continuity a year later in the New 52 and the Teen Titans were almost completely wiped out of existence, and the animated series was canceled despite it's loyal fan base because they weren't selling enough tie-in toys. Miss Martian was just one more casualty in an era that made it difficult to be a fan of DC. They're turning it around, though; Young Justice was brought back for a very serviceable third season, and Miss Martian was featured in a solid Titans series by Dan Abnett. Clearly DC knows they have something special with M'gann, and we're going to continue to see her.
Our Miss Martian Story
We had to skew somewhere between the comics and the animated series to get our version of M'gann just right. The problem is that the specific backstory of her predecessor, Martian Manhunter, varies a little depending on which version of his story you're following.
In our timeline, Martian civilization was wiped out hundreds of years ago in an atrocity staged by the White Martians. M'gann therefore has to be similarly time-displaced. Our solution is to make her the offspring of the tribe that wiped out the Green Martians, but too young to have been a part of it. This means that after the White Martians awakened on Mars and attacked Earth and wiped out most of the Justice League, J'onn actually finds an infant White Martian. She is a child of the terrorists that destroyed his planet, committed genocide on his people, and very likely killed his family and yet, in an act of profound forgiveness and compassion, J'onn takes M'gann in, and begins to telepathically raise her with those same values. It's just such a fantastic moment for J'onn, and sets up M'gann to be such a great character on her own.
This means that M'gann is actually only a few years old, but maturing is probably a very different process for a race of telepaths. In the cartoon it's stated that she's 48 Earth-years old, but it makes just as much sense for a few years to be more than enough for her to be a Martian teenager. This actually gives her a lot in common with Superboy, who is technically only 5 years old.
Which of course brings up another point; a huge part of M'gann's appeal in the animated series is her fan-favorite relationship with Superboy. This is largely because her early role on the show was adapted from Wonder Girl's role in the original Young Justice comic. The comic relationship between Connor and Cassie is one of the great romances in comics, which means that M'gann will just be a close friend to both of them, but I personally think there's something very likeable about that idea. If you really M'gann to be linked to someone romantically, there are probably quite a few possibilities that no one has considered yet.
To introduce M'gann to the outside world, we had her team up with Natasha Irons and Traci 13 to save Superman from Metallo. This is an adaptation of the 'Hungry Ghosts' story from Action Comics #806-808, with M'gann taking over for Cir-el, a short-lived version of Supergirl that we're not using in our timeline. It's a very cool way to bring in all three characters, and gives each of them a solid foundation of friendship right at the very beginning of their stories. M'gann will then go on to join the Teen Titans, making more lifelong friends as she goes.
Miss Martian's Costume
M'gann's costume has more or less stayed the same since her introduction, although there seemed to be some inconsistency as to whether or not it had a plunging neckline that followed the red cross on her chest. You see her drawn this way pretty often, but it's always remarkably forced, to say nothing of being pretty inconsistent with her character. The best versions of her getup always cover her right up to the neck, where her costume meets her cape. The animated series basically created the ideal version of this.
Of course, it also created a solid alternate take on the costume as well. In the show, the young heroes are essentially the Justice League's covert operations team, so all the characters had alternate stealth suits. M'gann is morphing her body into her outfit anyway, so she simply shifted into a black jumpsuit with a blue hooded cape and red detailing. As the show jumped forward in time this became her default costume. If I had to pick, I'd say my favorite look is the classic white top and blue skirt, but one of the cool things about a shapeshifting hero is that she's free to slide back and forth at will.
It's also worth pointing out that all of these looks, even her green skin, are disguises. Her natural body is a monsterous White Martian. There have been more than a few takes on the character that show her starting to choose a new default form that starts to embrace her White Martian heritage. It's a clever idea, but ultimately it might be just as important for M'gann to be able to live in the form that she feels is true to her.
Miss Martian's Future
Earlier we mentioned that Miss Martian has returned to regular comic continuity in the pages of Dan Abnett's Titans run. In it she serves as a liasion between the Titans and the Justice League, but as the series goes on she becomes more and more integral to the team. It's an interesting characterization in a pretty cool book. What I really like about her appearance here is the look they came up with for her. It's a more mature design for M'gann but it's absolutely something you could imagine her wearing once she's been around for a few more years, as she and her friends mature into adults.
For her part, M'gann is a core member of the current lineup of Titans. She will, along with her teammates, soon engage in a battle against Prometheus, and move their headquarters back into Mount Justice, where they will again take the name Young Justice, making room for a new, younger group of heroes to become the new Teen Titans.
What's next for M'gann, then? She's a character that's always been defined by her relationships with others. Her best friends are all maturing into the heroes of the future, and she will be right there beside them, always ready to adapt herself into whatever her friends need.
Allies & Teams
We are absolutely doing Vandal Savage. Best of luck trying to concoct a DC continuity without him... he touches literally everything. You'll probably see him up before the year is over... he just has by far the longest continuity of any character we've done, and it takes a while.
Conversely... No, we're not doing the Immortal Man. He was in there at one point, but ever so often I'll be in the middle of adapting a character to the timeline, and I realize that they have literally no effect on anything. Even if their own story is kinda cool, sometimes I just have to admit that this story doesn't actually make the overall fabric of DC better; they're just vestigial cool ideas. Now, that doesn't mean that the character isn't capable of adding to DC. Every c-list character is just one great writer with one great idea away from being huge. It's just never happened to the Immortal Man.
Of course... maybe that great writer is you, and that great idea is the one you just described. You're touching on some ideas that are pretty common to the heroes of DC; the question of how much the heroes should interfere in the destiny of mankind. You see the Justice League dealing with it a lot, and of course there's that fantastic run Kurt Busiek did in Superman (655 to 677, I think) that asked a lot of those questions. The problem you'd be running into is that you're kind of hard-pressed to make people care about Immortal Man. I don't think he's ever really managed to hold onto a reader-base.
But I always say, every character is someone's favorite character!