It has been a long time since I did another Outsiders Bio and I still have a lot of members to go. The current Didio run seriously blows…so I think it is time to look at the Outsiders comics of past. Today I will be talking about a character who recently returned from the dead and joined the Justice League. But prior to her death, this character was the team leader of the Outsiders. I am talking about Jennifer-Lynn Haden aka Jade
To give you a quick background on the character, Jennie-Lynn Haden is the daughter of the original Green Lantern Alan Scott and the villainous Rose Thorn. Her mother did not tell Alan about Jennie’s birth and gave her up for adoption along with her brother, Obsidian. Her powers comes from her father’s exposure to the magical energies of the starheart which was passed down to her. Jennie and her brother tried to join the Justice Society when they discovered who their Dad was but they were rejected and instead joined the team known as Infinity, Inc and she has been a superhero ever since.
She first encountered the Outsiders just after the new version of the team formed in 2003’s Outsiders (Volume 3) #2. New York City is attacked by Gorilla Grodd and his army of gorillas and the new Outsiders struggle against them. New York, of course, is also the home of our green skinned hero. When a plane is about to go down, she uses her green energy to create giant parade balloons!
That is the last we see of Jade in this battle. At the end of the issue, Nightwing discusses the forming of the new Outsiders team with Batman and mentions that Jade has decided to stay with the team…so one can assume she was asked to join off panel.
The first thing I noticed about Jade is the fun things she makes with her energy like a battering ram!
And heat sensing masks!
Otherwise she stayed mostly in the background in the early issues of volume 3 but one can see clearly she is one of the most experienced members of the team – only Arsenal and Nightwing having been heroes longer then her and she is not new to teams either, being a former member of Infinity, Inc.
And her potential leadership shows in fight scenes with just the other female members…
In Outsiders (Volume 3) #14, it is Jade who is left to fend for herself against the Fearsome Five and she refused to go down even with a broken arm.
But as one can imagine the broken arm leaves her in a less then perfect mood. She ends up confronting Nightwing directly about his leadership style afterwards.
This took some guts seeing as how Nightwing was being emotionally detached at this time and acting more and more like Bruce Wayne than Dick Grayson.
Sidelined due to her broken arm, Jade delivers some news to Arsenal and Nightwing when she returns to the team in issue 16.
Unfortunately for Jade, the team votes against her in their first adventure with Jade as leader when she says they should try to focus on Super villains and leave the child abduction thing to the police. They decide to team up with America’s Most Wanted and follow the case that Grace had been investigating with the missing children. Despite the undercutting of her leadership, Jade lends a hand in the case *pun intended* without any complaints.
But besides being a good leader, Jade couldn’t keep a lid on her team’s hormones.
Not long after, Arsenal discovered that someone had been tampering with their computer systems – someone that had to be a member of the team. Despite being the leader, it isn’t she who does the interrogations of each member, but Arsenal. She expresses how much she cares about the team during her interrogation.
This shows a leader the complete opposite of Nightwing, who wanted to make sure he didn’t trust and care for the team. I like the contrast between the two leaders.
Because of how much she cares for the team, she attacks the eventually discovered trader – Indigo aka Brainiac 8 – with all she’s got. But her attack fails to do any damage.
The betrayal of Indigo left the team in shambles and demoralized. Like any good leader, Jade knew that changes needed to be made to bring the team back. First thing she did was bring in a new recruit, Captain Marvel Jr.
followed by blowing up their old headquarters so they could start fresh. She’s an intense leader!
Jade’s leadership style seems to have changed since Indigo’s betrayal. She decides to lean toward Nightwing’s idea of a team that is just a team and nothing more. She makes that clear to the other members when they reconvene in Outsiders (Volume 3) #29.
We don’t really get to see much more of Jade’s new leadership style as in the next issue Donna Troy shows up and recruits her to fight a war in space chronicled in Infinite Crisis. Sadly, Jade perishes in that war and the series fast forwards one year later long after her death. Recently, she returned from the dead during Blackest Night only to join the Justice League instead of the Outsiders.
During her time in the Outsiders, Jade grew from a tag along member to full fledged leader. Being one of the veteran heroes of the team, she took the reigns of leadership from Nightwing but her leadership skills didn’t really shine through until after the team came back from the horrible betrayal of Indigo. It’s unfortunate we didn’t get to see more of her leadership before her death, but prior to her death Jennie-Lynn Haden was the 23rd member and team leader of the Outsiders.