- ...I shall not be moved.
- — Bronze Tiger src
Ben Turner is Bronze Tiger, one of the world's greatest martial artists. He studied with Richard Dragon under the O-Sensei, and was later brainwashed by the League of Assassins. This made him one of the world's deadliest killers. He would later resist their programming, and become a full-fledged superhero.
Ben Turner grew up in an upper middle class black neighborhood in Central City. At the age of 10 he killed for the first time when he woke up and found a burglar assaulting his parents. Ben grabbed a carving knife and stabbed the man repeatedly until he died, shocked by how good it felt. He turned to martial arts at the age of 13, beginning with Tae Kwon Do, as a means of teaching himself discipline and control over his homicidal urges. This was not enough to control his anger problems, and he soon turned to crime. Knowing that this path would lead him to jail, Ben began traveling the world to find guidance. The master Kirigi took him in as a student, but Kirigi was cruel and tried to exploit Ben's violent nature for his own agenda. Ben left hoping he could find someone to help him achieve inner peace.
Turner became a student of the O-Sensei, a legendary martial arts instructor in Japan. O-Sensei took a second student named Richard Dragon, and Ben became close friends with Richard. Their lessons included combat, history, philosophy, and science. When their training was finished, O-Sensei sent them to find their destiny. They were immediately recruited by Barney Ling, an agent of G.O.O.D., who used them to break up a slave ring in Sudan. Dragon and Turner decided to start their new lives in New York City, traveling with the O-Sensei's god-daughter Carolyn Woosan. They are attacked when they get there, and Carolyn is kidnapped by a spy called the Swiss. Turner is shot in the leg so he cannot help Dragon. He recovers on crutches while Dragon goes after Carolyn. The Swiss sends goons to finish Turner, and he nearly dies, but Dragon intervenes and saves him. Following this battle, Dragon and Turner set up their own martial arts school in Manhattan. Their school was attacked several times while Ben was crippled. Dragon used Lady Shiva as his partner instead of Ben while fighting Doctor Moon, Guano Cravat, and Slash.
Turner is targeted by mysterious assassins. Barney Ling promises to give Richard Dragon intel if he will go on another mission for G.O.O.D.. Dragon takes Shiva and Turner to the Caribbean, where they defeat Preying Mantis. Ling reveals that Ben's sister was murdered, and Ben inherited a logging company. Dragon and Shiva help him take down the culprit, a logger named Hatchett. Ben takes custody of his newphew Benjamin, Jr.. He is attacked by another assassin, the Silent Samurai. Ling sends the trio on an undercover mission to deal with the Samurai in China. Shiva and Turner are captured by Madame Sun until Dragon releases them. Ben is poisoned in an attack by the League of Assassins. Dragon and Shiva trace the poison to a killer named Viper in Mongolia, but Viper dies before they can get an antidote.
League of Assassins
Richard Dragon discovered that Turner has been brainwashed into becoming the Bronze Tiger by Prof. Ojo, then used by Barney Ling (who turns out to be a traitor). Dragon and Turner prove to be equals in the fight, which only ends when Ling is accidentally knocked out a window.
Later, Turner and Dragon are hired by King Faraday to work for the CBI (Central Bureau of Intelligence). Assigned to take down the League of Assassins, Dragon and Turner are discovered by the League, who kill Turner's fianceé, Myoshi, and proceeded to brainwash Turner. Turner was rid of his demons by channeling them into the identity of the Bronze Tiger, a masked assassin working for the League.
During this time, he also trains the assassin David Cain's daughter, Cassandra, together with other members of the League. As the Bronze Tiger, Turner developed a fearsome reputation in the world, his identity remaining a secret to everyone but the League.
As the Bronze Tiger, Ben was feared around the world, and the Sensei was smart enough to ensure that Ben hardly ever took off the mask, sending him on a new mission as soon as he finished another. For a time, his identity was secret and he became one of the world's most wanted criminals, the Bronze Tiger being a professional assassin, killing on three continents. Bronze Tiger was at one point sent to murder Kathy Kane, the Batwoman. Shortly after he fought and defeated Batman, another assassin killed Kane. When Turner's memory started to return, the League of Assassins turned against him and after a fight, he was soon taken to a hospital. While recovering, the League of Assassins tried to murder him, but he was saved by Batman, who interrogated him about the murder of Kane, but Turner's memory had not fully recovered.
Learning of Bronze Tiger's true identity, King Faraday set up a rescue squad of Rick Flag and Nightshade. They retrieved the Tiger, and he was deprogrammed by Amanda Waller, who would later run the Suicide Squad.
Main article: Legends
Amanda Waller and Rick Flag put together a new Suicide Squad, and Bronze Tiger as their first recruit. Flag trusts Bronze Tiger, and uses him as security when they recruit Deadshot. They are sent to destroy Brimstone at Mount Rushmore, and Bronze Tiger knocks out Enchantress when her evil persona has finished its work. He stays with the team for personal reasons when the prisoners are released. Waller sends them to rescue or kill Captain Boomerang when Boomerang threatens to expose the Squad. Bronze Tiger is sent to take down G. Gordon Godfrey, but Godfrey uses his persuasive powers to make the Tiger a mind-controlled slave.
Main article: Suicide Squad: Trial by Fire
Bronze Tiger becomes a permanent member of the Suicide Squad living in Belle Reve, because Amanda Waller promises to help him regain his memories. He is second-in-command under Rick Flag, and helps keep the inmates in line. Their next mission is destroying the terrorist group Jihad in Qurac, and Bronze Tiger is selected to deal with Thuggee assassin Ravan. Bronze Tiger breaks Ravan's back, and Ravan demands an honorable death, but Bronze Tiger insists that he does not kill anymore. When Belle Reve is attacked by the Female Furies of Apokolips, Bronze Tiger tries to fight Stompa and is defeated. He goes undercover as the supervillain Wipeout when they take down the racist vigilante William Hell. Ben poses as a butler in Russia's American embassy when the team goes undercover in Moscow. This leads to a battle with the People's Heroes, and Bronze Tiger defeats the speedster Bolshoi. Waller relieves Flag of his command after this mission and puts Bronze Tiger in charge. Bronze Tiger takes Enchantress to Madame Xanadu for help controlling her powers, and Xanadu tells him that Enchantress is a ticking time bomb. He is given a ring to control her. Warden Economos sends the Suicide Squad to destroy Manhunters during Millennium. They do not receive public credit for this mission. Bronze Tiger is about his ability to take command, and the androids break his leg during a fight. Waller relieves Tiger and puts Flag back in charge, when Flag proves himself against Batman.
Turner develops a relationship with Vixen, while Flo Crawley, a part of the Squad's support crew, nurses a crush for him. Meeting Ravan again later, Turner convinces him to join the Squad, and the two become an effective fighting duo. The almost corrupting nature of the Squad eventually leads to Rick Flag's departure from the Squad and seeming death in a nuclear explosion. Turner becomes the leader of the team, in which he excels, often disobeying direct orders to save the lives of his men (even if they were "expendable"). The Squad member Duchess, in reality the Apokilptian soldier Lashina, betrays the team and takes many, including Flo, home to Apokolips. Flo does not survive the kidnapping.
Later Turner is confronted for his actions by his superiors, and in the ensuing meeting, Turner's mind snaps. He flees, traveling back to the East (leaving Vixen in the process), where he spends some time as a janissary. Shortly afterwards, the Suicide Squad is disbanded and Amanda Waller is sent to jail.
Eventually, after a year, Amanda Waller reforms the Squad and again recruits Turner. In the missing year, Turner had become a deeply troubled man, who distances himself from Vixen and was constantly egging on Ravan to confront him. In one mission shortly after the team had reformed, Vixen is hurt, and this unlocks Turner's feelings for her once more. He mostly returns to his old state of mind. Vixen later leaves the team, and she and Turner part on good terms.
In the team's last mission, the Squad struggles to free a small island nation from the tyranny of its seemingly immortal ruler. The team must pass through a forest known for causing hallucinations. While the others experience their own mind-trips, Bronze Tiger faces himself. Defeating himself, and thereby exorcizing his demons, Turner once again becomes a complete person. The tyrant is later defeated by Waller.
Justice League Task Force
Shortly after leaving the Squad, Turner was summoned to be part of the short lived Justice League Task Force and assist Bruce Wayne locate Shondra Kinsolving and Jack Drake. Turner travelled to the island of Santa Prisca and teamed-up with Green Arrow and Gypsy. Despite their failure to rescue the kidnapped people, the adventure brought him and Gypsy together, after which their relationship would develop further. He later becomes her mentor in martial arts.
Cassandra Cain begins a search for her birth mother, who she believes is Lady Shiva. She tracks down Turner in Detroit, where he has opened the "Tiger Dojo". Both are able to come to terms with Turner's involvement in Cassandra's training, and he expresses his pride at her becoming a hero.
Bronze Tiger rescues Rick Flag from a secret Quraci prison, where Flag had been imprisoned for four years. Notably he is seen wearing a variant on the costume he wore while with the League of Assassins, complete with a tiger head mask (reportedly he wears the mask to prove it no longer has any power over him). Afterwards, Amanda Waller appears at the Tiger Dojo, revealing to Ben that she leaked the information about Flag's whereabouts. She then enlists their aid in tracking down a supposedly rogue Suicide Squad team, a team which in reality was being run by Flag and Turner at Waller's behest.
Powers and Abilities
- Martial Arts: The Bronze Tiger possesses no metahuman powers, but is a renowened master martial artist with lightning-fast reflexes and great strength. He has mastered several fighting styles such as Boxing, Hapkido, Jeet Kune Do, Jujutsu, Judo, Karate, Kung-Fu, Muay Thai, Savate, Silat, Vale Tudo, and Taekwondo. He has bested notable martial artists such as Batman and fought Richard Dragon to a standstill. He is on the fighting level of Lady Shiva, who acknowledges and respects his skills. He is also an adept acrobat and has extraordinary stamina. Bronze Tiger's fighting prowess has given him the reputation of being a lethal weapon.
- Aikido: Turner is known to have mastered Aikido.
- Karate: Turner is known to have mastered Karate.
- Kung Fu: Turner is known to have mastered Kung Fu.
- Tae Kwon Do: Turner has studied Tae Kwon Do.
- Hapkido
- Jeet Kune Do
- Jiu-Jitsu: Turner is known to have mastered Jiu-Jitsu.
- Judo: Turner has studied Judo.
- Savate
- Chi Manipulation: Bronze Tiger's mastery of martial arts has made him skilled in Chinese meditative techniques which he uses to enhance his concentration and channel his chi to increase his healing and recovery time. He is adept enough to teach these skills to others and sense the chi of others.
- Although this character was originally introduced during DC's Earth-One era of publication, their existence following the events of the 1985–86 limited series Crisis on Infinite Earths remains intact. However, some elements of the character's Pre-Crisis history may have been altered or removed for Post-Crisis New Earth continuity, and should be considered apocryphal.
- Ben Turner was created by Dennis O'Neil and Jim Berry as a character in their 1974 novel Dragon's Fists. O'Neil later adapted him as a DC Universe character in 1975 when he was writing the series Richard Dragon, Kung-Fu Fighter.
- 177 Appearances of Benjamin Turner (New Earth)
- 91 Images featuring Benjamin Turner (New Earth)
- 7 Quotations by or about Benjamin Turner (New Earth)
- Character Gallery: Benjamin Turner (New Earth)
- Suicide Squad #38
- Richard Dragon, Kung-Fu Fighter #1
- Richard Dragon, Kung-Fu Fighter #2
- Richard Dragon, Kung-Fu Fighter #3
- Richard Dragon, Kung-Fu Fighter #4
- Richard Dragon, Kung-Fu Fighter #5
- Richard Dragon, Kung-Fu Fighter #7
- Richard Dragon, Kung-Fu Fighter #8
- Richard Dragon, Kung-Fu Fighter #9
- Richard Dragon, Kung-Fu Fighter #10
- Richard Dragon, Kung-Fu Fighter #11
- Richard Dragon, Kung-Fu Fighter #12
- Richard Dragon, Kung-Fu Fighter #13
- Detective Comics #485
- Detective Comics #489
- Legends #2
- Legends #3
- Legends #4
- Legends #5
- Legends #6
- Suicide Squad #1
- Suicide Squad #2
- Suicide Squad #3
- Suicide Squad #4
- Suicide Squad #5
- Suicide Squad #6
- Suicide Squad #7
- Suicide Squad #8
- Millennium #4
- Millennium #5
- Suicide Squad #9
- Suicide Squad #10
- Justice League Task Force #5
- Justice League Task Force #6
- Suicide Squad #38
- Richard Dragon (Volume 1)
League of Assassins member
|Justice League member|
This character is or was a member of the Justice League of America, or the Justice League in any of its various incarnations, sworn by a duty to act as guardians of America and the world by using their skills and/or superpowers to protect Earth from both interstellar and domestic threats.
Suicide Squad member