Rick Tyler was born the child of Rex Tyler. Rex was a successful hero and businessman, but he wasn't a very a good father. When Rex wasn't spending time with business, he was out doing his superhero work, as addicted to it as the substance that he created that gave him his powers; Miraclo. This meant that Rick rarely saw his dad, even on his birthdays, and eventually, Rex wasn't even sure of the age of his son.
It was no surprise that although Rick would develop into a well-balanced teen, he was consistently looking for his father's guidance and approval. Yet Rex could not see the role model Rick really needed, and he tried to push Rick's education to its limits, an endeavor that Rick didn't wish to pursue, and he constantly felt inferior to his father.
Rick became the second Hourman when the Crisis on Infinite Earths threatened all of reality, and he used one of his dad's Miraclo pills to save the life of Beth Chapel, whom he grew quite fond of. His father strongly disapproved of Rick's actions, knowing the addictive effects of Miraclo and tried to prevent Rick from taking up the Hourman mantle. Nonetheless, Rick ended up trying to join a team of other 2nd generation heroes known as Infinity, Inc. Although Rex was able to temporarily dissuade his son, Rick still tried to convince his father otherwise.
Matters became worse, however when Rex, along with his teammates in the Justice Society of America sacrificed themselves to fight eternal Ragnarok in Limbo. When Northwind and Beth Chapel came to tell him of the news, Rick fled in grief. He was later kidnapped by the new group Injustice Unlimited, themselves former members of the Injustice Society and used as a hostage against Infinity Inc. Rick was able to escape, but in the process, seemingly killed the Wizard.
Rick had a hard time forgiving himself, although it would later be revealed that the Wizard was in fact still alive. Rick gave up the Hourman identity almost as soon as he assumed it, angrily unmasking before a press photographer. Luckily, Lyta was able to prevent the photo from being taken and took Rick away, trying to console him.
Nonetheless, Rick wore his Hourman outfit another time to attend the court hearing for the villain Mister Bones, although Rick feared he himself was just as bad as Bones, suspecting that the Miraclo pills had simply worked on an already violent urge when he killed the Wizard. Eventually though, Rick returned to his Hourman identity, wearing an outfit similar to his father's in honor of him. Shortly afterward, Infinity Inc. disbanded.
Eventually, Rex and the rest of the JSA returned from Limbo and he and Rick were reunited. In the meantime, Rick had contracted leukemia due to the prolonged exposure to Miraclo. With the help of Rex's old teammate, Johnny Chambers (aka Johnny Quick), both Rex and Rick learned to tap into their superhuman powers without the use of Miraclo, using Chambers' mind-focusing technique instead.
Father and son would only spend a short time together when the villain Extant killed Rex and some of his allies from the Justice Society during the event known as Zero Hour. Shortly afterward Rick endured another tragic blow when his sweetheart, Beth Chapel (as Dr. Midnight) was slain by Eclipso.
Rick remained retired from the superhero business for some time, during which he met the new android Hourman. This android had been engineered by his time traveling father from Rex's own DNA. Although Rick initially intensely disliked the new Hourman, he was saved by the android when he transported Rick into the Timepoint (a place where time stands still), so that he would be spared from an unidentifiable alien illness.
The two would grow closer when the android then cured Rick of his cancer and bestowed upon him two gifts. Rick was now able to occasionally see one hour into the future, as well as being given an hour with his father in the Timepoint. The Hourman android had plucked Rex out of the timestream seconds before he was killed fighting Extant. When the hour in the Timepoint expired, however, Rex would be sent back in time, where he would fight and die. The transportation to the Timepoint would be activated by a button in Rick's Hourman gloves.
Now cured of all his illnesses, Rick resumed the mantle of Hourman (adopting a new costume in the process), using the non-addictive form of Miraclo, and joined a makeshift JSA in defeating the Ultra-Humanite. Rick remained with the JSA after this battle and began growing close to Jesse Chambers, who was the JSA's business manager and also the superheroine Jesse Quick. Rick is still close to his mother and has a strained relationship with his cousin Rebecca who runs his father's company TylerCo.
When the JSA traveled with Hawkman to the Middle Eastern country of Kahndaq to stop Black Adam, Rick was severely injured by one of Nemesis' swords. Realizing that he would die from the massive blood loss unless he was quickly operated on, Rick saw no choice but to transport himself to the Timepoint where his father was. Rick quickly swapped places with his father, and the Timepoint held Rick and his wounds in stasis. Rex was returned to the regular world and was left with no means of returning to the Timepoint nor any idea how he could save his son.
The answer once again came in the form of the android Hourman, who transported Rex and several other JSA members to the Timepoint, amongst them the latest Dr. Mid-Nite (Pieter Cross), who was able to save Rick's life. The time used to save Rick also meant that Rex's time was up and that he would have to return to fighting Extant. Rick, however, tried to take his place, so that his father could live again. Instead, the android Hourman sacrificed himself so that both Hourmen may live. Rex retrieved the damaged Hourman parts and is trying to rebuild him, while Rick continues to operate with the JSA.
While returning once more to Kahndaq to face the Spectre, Rick's friend Jakeem Thunder tried to trap the Spectre inside his magical pen but was instead himself thrown into the 5th Dimension. Rick, Mr. Terrific and Stargirl ventured into the 5th Dimension and rescued Jakeem from the thralls of Qwsp.
Rick is part of the newly reformed Justice Society of America and is married to Jesse Chambers; now going by the name Liberty Belle.
Rick later left the JSA to help form its sister All-Stars team. He was a valuable member of that team, under the leadership of Powergirl, until it disbanded. He has since returned to the JSA full time.
Rick eventually fathered a son, Johnny Tyler, with his wife. He cried tears of joy upon learning of his wife's pregnancy.
- Limited Precognition: (Formerly)
- 60 Minute Time Limit: After a 60 minute time period, the "AQP" burns itself out, and the waste toxins generated need to be eliminated in the bloodstream over about a 24 hour period.
- Drug Addiction
- Miraclo: Hourman derives all his superhuman abilities from the "miracle vitamin" Miraclo. An active ingredient is a special form of phosphorus, which bonds temporarily with the ATP in muscle cells to create an "Adenosine Quad-Phosphate" which energizes the cells.
- Superhuman Strength: The energy released gives the subject increased strength.
- Superhuman Durability: The energy released gives the subject limited invulnerability.
- Superhuman Stamina: The energy released gives the subject heightened stamina.
- Superhuman Agility: The energy released gives the subject increased agility.
- Night Vision: The energy released gives the subject the ability to see at night.
- Aquatic Adaptation: The energy released gives the subject the ability to breathe underwater.
- Although this character was originally introduced during DC's Earth-Two 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 no longer apply.
- Rex and Rick both wore an hourglass around their necks given to them by the Hourman Android. It was filled with energized tachyons, time in its most basic form.
- Before Johnny was conceived, Rick feared how the Miraclo in his bloodstream would affect a baby and stopped using it until Jesse got pregnant.
- 230 Appearances of Richard Tyler (New Earth)
- 62 Images featuring Richard Tyler (New Earth)
- Quotations by or about Richard Tyler (New Earth)
- Character Gallery: Richard Tyler (New Earth)
Justice Society of America member