Captain Cold: Who is the Leader of the Rogues?

Chillin’ Like a Villain

Vandal Savage: Who are you to stand up against me, Vandal Savage, Destroyer of Empires!
Captain Cold: Leonard Snart, Robber of ATMs!”

Legends of Tomorrow “River of Time” (Season 1, episode 14)

A bank is closing for the night. Tellers help the last few customers while the guards keep watch. A waiting client checks his watch, nods, and places a hand in his pocket. A trio wearing ski masks burst through the doors, yelling at everyone to get on the ground.

The clients and tellers comply, but a guard jumps to his feet. A high pitched whine is heard as a blue beam freezes the ground in front of him. He slips and crashes into a wall. Looking up, he sees a customer brandishing a high tech gun. The guard goes for his gun, but another beam freezes him solid. Captain Cold turns to the tellers and demands their cash.

Captain Cold is Flash’s most popular foe. Originally a run of the mill ice villain, he became a threat equal to Lex Luthor or Bane. So who is he? How did he get his powers? How did a villain join the Justice League? Let’s find out.

Going Rogue: Captain Cold’s Backstory

Snart:Once the armored car called 911, we had 182 seconds before any cop could be on the scene. No one could get there fast enough to stop us. But something did. And you lost your cool. You know the rules, we don’t shoot guards or cops unless it’s the only option. We don’t need the heat.

The Flash “Going Rogue” (Season 1, Episode 4)

Captain Cold debuted in Showcase #8 in 1957. He was created by John Broome and Carmine Infantino.

Len Snart was the son of an abusive cop. He ran away from home and became a thief. Snart was caught by The Flash and swore revenge. He spent his prison sentence studying The Flash, eventually discovering the hero has a weakness to cyclotron emissions. Snart designed a gun to harness those energies and escaped from prison.

He quickly learned that his new gun could freeze water into ice. He became a supervillain called Captain Cold and attacked The Flash. Despite landing a few hits, Captain Cold lost and was arrested.

After a few more goes at the Scarlet Speedster, Captain Cold realized he needed help. He reached out to other villains who had been beaten by The Flash and put together a new supervillain team called The Rogues.

Rogue’s Revenge: Captain Cold’s History

Snart: “He broke my sister’s heart. Only fair I break his.

The Flash “Family of Rogues” Season 2, Episode 3)

Captain Cold and The Rogues were a force to be reckoned with. While never able to kill The Flash, they are capable of holding off the Justice League for a time. Captain Cold ran a tight ship and bonded with his team. Snart’s closest ties were his sister, Golden Glider, and his best friend, Heat Wave.

Snart’s family issues came back to bite him. Golden Glider stole a spare Cold Gun and went on a crime spree with her lover, Chillblaine. He eventually tired of Glider and killed her, leading Captain Cold to kill him in revenge. 

Captain Cold’s father also tried his hand at replacing his son. A villain called Libra tried to put together his own incarnation of The Rogues and ordered them to assassinate their predecessors. The Snart men fought, arguing the entire time about the elder’s abuse and who was to blame for Glider’s death. Captain Cold wasn’t cold-hearted enough to kill his father, but he had no compunction about passing that task off to Heat Wave.

Rogue’s Redemption: Captain Cold’s Modern Stories

The Atom: “Really? We’re trying to save the world and you’re lifting wallets?
Snart: “It’s called multitasking.

Legends of Tomorrow “White Knights” (Season 1, Episode 4)

Captain Cold and The Rogues changed over time. They were still murderers and thieves who wanted to kill The Flash, but they were willing to help the heroes during major crises. Villains, but of a lighter shade of evil.

The New 52 imprint upgraded Captain Cold’s powers. He stole a gene splicer that fused his Cold Gun to his DNA. He convinced the rest of The Rogues to do the same with their weapons with mixed results. Most of them suffered disfiguring injuries, and a few were driven mad. That bad call led to The Rogues ousting Captain Cold as their leader.

Forever Evil saw Captain Cold reach the big leagues. The supervillain community was united by the Crime Syndicate of America, an evil Justice League from a parallel universe. Captain Cold was one of the few villains to balk at their authority and fought the CSA alongside Lex Luthor, Black Manta, Black Adam, and Bizzaro. Their ragtag team defeated the CSA and a grateful world pardoned them for their earlier crimes. The Justice League even offered Captain Cold a spot on the team, which he accepted.

Absolute Zero: Captain Cold’s Powers and Personality

[Captain Cold has frozen Johnny Quick’s leg]
Captain Cold:You think that hurts? [CRACK] Wait until it thaws out. See, The Flash and me got mutual respect. That’s the difference between you and him. Besides having two legs.

Forever Evil

The Cold Gun is Captain Cold’s signature weapon. It’s easy to mistake it for a bog-standard ice gun or freeze ray, but the Cold Gun stops motion, freezing the target to absolute zero. This allows Captain Cold to create structures out of ice, freeze targets without killing them, and stop The Flash cold. Fellow ice villain Mr. Freeze has claimed that Snart is the only villain to master absolute zero.

Captain Cold’s cryokinesis developed when a gene splicer fused him to his Cold Gun. These powers are as strong as the gun, but far more versatile. Cold can now manipulate ice with a gesture instead of having to aim a weapon. If all that isn’t enough, he has also created a Black Ice Gun that can damage a speedster’s connection to the Speed Force.

Captain Cold is a professional. He holds himself and The Rogues to a strict code of honor. They don’t kill without a reason, take or deal drugs, and they focus on the score instead of revenge schemes. Cold and The Flash have morphed from enemies to rivals over the years. 

The Actors Who Play Captain Cold

Dick Ryal – Challenge of the Super Friends
Lex Lang – Justice League: Unlimited
Steven Blum – Batman: the Brave and the Bold
Alan Tudyk – Young Justice
Matthew Mercer – DC Superhero Girls
James Arnold Tyler – Justice League: The New Frontier
Danny Jacobs – Justice League: The Flashpoint Paradox
Michael Champion – The Flash (1990)
Wentworth Miller – The Flash (2014), Legends of Tomorrow

Didya Get All That?

A cold-blooded crook

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