Who is DC’s Most Awesome Japanese Superheroine?

DC has a plethora of amazing characters at their disposal, but for some reason it shies away from letting it’s secondary heroes shine. 2016 brought about the unconventional Suicide Squad movie that featured DC’s own band of merry misfits. Sure, everyone know the Joker, who let’s face it was a bait and switch villain but I’m kind of, sort of okay with that because it showcased lesser known characters and brought them to the general public. 

Amazingly, DC threw in one of its most underrated heroes- Katana. This is a huge step forward in the right direction because the list of Asian characters is so easily exhausted. She might not have said much and was reduced to a bad ass piece of eye candy, but she was there. Non-comic book fans probably haven’t even heard of her before now and many people may be scratching their heads and asking themselves who she is.

                                                        Who is Katana?

Photo credit from left to right: Katana Issue 1 by David Finch, Karen Fukuhara as Katana from Suicide Squad (2016), and Katana in DC Super Hero Girls

Tatsu Yamashiro a.k.a Katana is a Japanese woman who grew up under ordinary circumstances with a finesse for the martial arts. She pursued martial arts with the encouragement of her parents. After her marrying her husband, Maseo, things took a turn for the worse when his brother murdered him and his and Tatsu’s children in jealous rage. His brother, Takeo had also been in love with Tatsu and had also become a member of the infamous yakuza. Defeating Takeo, Katana took up his sword, “Soultaker” which contained her husband’s soul and came underwent extensive samurai training. Eventually, she became a member of Batman’s team, the Outsiders and later, the Suicide Squad and the Birds of Prey on a never-ending quest to maintain justice in the world. Katana also received her own short-lived title during the New 52. Katana can also be seen on DC Super Hero Girls.

With such a rich history, it would be great to see Katana highlighted more in the future of the DCU. I think that she would bring diversity and become a great symbol of feminism, joining other superheroines like Wonder Woman and Batgirl/Oracle. It’s important for young girls, especially Asian-American girls to have a strong role model that looks like them. When you see someone who looks like you it’s easier to picture yourself becoming more like them in the future and it helps you feel more at ease in your own skin. That’s why Katana deserves an Asian-Pacific Heritage Month spotlight.

What do you think? Would you like to see more of Katana? Share your thoughts in the comments below!

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