When the planet Wolfholme, home to peace-loving diplomat Rik Sunn, was destroyed by the Sauroid Empire, he gave into the pleas of his (now-deceased) family to join the Navy and defend Earth and what remained of the human race against their attackers. A skilled pilot who had turned his back on flying in the hopes of averting a galactic war, Sunn and a ragtag group of recruits became The Sun Devils, an elite military group that instead went to the front lines of that war in hopes of preventing the kind of Armageddon that could come from the Sauroids having a Starcrusher—a weapon of galactic-scale mass destruction.
As the story wore on, Sunn's teammate and lover Anomie 'Annie' Zitar was revealed to be a Sauroid sleeper agent, and his remaining faith in the decency of people seemed shattered, leaving his political extremism to take over. The team, torn between their fairly moderate politics and their desire to follow their leader and to see the mission through, ultimately captured the Starcrusher and faced a hard choice: to deactive and destroy the weapon, or to use it, and destroy the Sauroid Homeworld where Emperor Karvus Khun was hiding out. Ultimately the team broke with Sunn, overriding his authority and choosing the moral high road. The Starcrusher was to be captured, but not used—except that the Earth government then used it remotely to destroy the Sauroid Homeworld anyway, alienating themselves from the Sun Devils and leaving the team without allies.
Whether or not Khun escaped the homeworld was at first unclear, but decades later, Sunn was still chasing the Sauroid dictator through time and space, when his chase came to an end. He found his enemy nearing the end of his life from natural causes and old age, invalid and hiding out on a personal spacecraft with his caregiver grandson. Sunn, by then, had been shunned by the rest of the Sun Devils who considered him an obsessive and traveled only with Scyla's daughter Sarique. The two ended up in the 20th-Century DC Universe, where they plotted to kill Khun but were stopped by Superman. Sunn, eventually, used a grenade belt to sacrifice himself, killing Khun and destroying the Sauroid craft in the process, but Superman flew Sarique to safety.
Transportation: Mark IX Eagle-Class Starfighter
Weapons: Starfighters, blaster guns
- The Sun Devils' original reality designation is unknown.
- Dan Jurgens was never intended to write any of the series; this happened later, when Conway had to bow out.
- The series, which was originally set in a time and place outside the mainstream DC Universe, was later incorporated into the DCU proper in an issue of Superman (volume 2) written and drawn by Jurgens and inked by Steve Mitchell, who inked the second half of the Sun Devils series.
- An inkling of what Jurgens would do next can be seen in issue 3, page 15, where a security guard can be seen wearing a blue-and-gold uniform with a headpiece and goggles. The guard looks remarkably like some of the "early" sketches for Booster Gold's costume that were recently included in the back of the 52 Pick-Up hardcover.
- In spite of their relatively low profile in DC History, The Sun Devils were recently included in one of Rip Hunter's blackboards (it said, "The Sun Devils will save us all") and in The Brave and the Bold (Volume 3) #8 when The Flash entered the timestream and saw various time-travelers and characters from the future, including John Fox and Booster Gold.