ByAlexander Sly Shaddix, writer at
A huge geek with a passion about Superheroes, yet still find time for Fantasy and Sci-Fi. DC specialist.
Alexander Sly Shaddix

She is one of the best martial artists in the DC Universe and has a killer voice. She's kicking ass and taking names in style. She is Dinah Laurel Lance (sometimes Dinah Drake), the Black Canary. Compared to other superheroes, Dinah is a quite an unknown character. She is not as popular as her lover and sometimes husband Oliver Queen, yet she still had a number of appearances.

Animated TV series appearances of Black Canary include:

  • An appearance on the Justice League Unlimited cartoon, voiced by Morena Baccarin (yes the one from Gotham and Deadpool)
  • Another appearance on Batman the Brave and the Bold, voiced by Grey Delisle
  • An appearance on Young Justice, voiced by Vanessa Marshall

Live-action TV series appearances of Black Canary include:

  • An appearance on the short-lived Birds of Prey TV series, played by Rachel Skarsten
  • A small role on the TV series Smallville, played by Alaina Huffman
  • And a significant role on the joint Arrow and Flash Universes, played by Caity Lotz (The Canary), Katie Cassidy (The Black Canary) and Juliana Harkavy (the second incarnation of the Black Canary)

Dinah also had a number of cameo appearances in the animated , though they are too minor and uncredited.

Dinah's exposure minimal, meaning not much is known about her outside of these appearances. So without further ado, let's jump right into the 10 facts you might not know about the .

10. She Became A White Supremacist Against Her Will

[Credit: DC Comics]
[Credit: DC Comics]

During a pivotal point in DC comics history, a time when the Green Lantern and the Green Arrow had a road trip around America, Dinah happened to be in Mount Rainer, Washington. There, she was attacked by a biker gang that left her unconscious, to die alone in the wild.

Fortunately for her, a man named Joshua happened to be nearby, saving her from a slow and painful death. Unfortunately for her, he happened to be a white supremacist, cult leader, and a hypnotist, who managed to hypnotize Dinah to help him with his cause.

The hypnosis only broke when she was forced to execute Ollie, the Green Arrow. Free from the hypnosis, Dinah was disgusted by what she did, staying in the area to help the local Native American populations rebuild.

9. She Wasn't Originally Blond

[Credit: DC Comics]
[Credit: DC Comics]

During her first appearances as Dinah Laurel Lance, it was revealed that she wasn't actually blond, but instead wore a blond wig to further hide her identity. A few years past and she apparently got too bored having to bother herself with a wig, bleaching her hair to her classic blond instead. The New 52 reboot seems to make her a natural blond.

8. She Was Brutally Beaten, Kidnapped And Tortured, Leaving Her Barren

[Credit: DC Comics]
[Credit: DC Comics]

During an investigation on a drug dealer and crime lord, Dinah became careless and got herself captured. The drug dealer, realizing who he had made his captive, tortured her mercilessly. During the torture, Dinah lost her Canary Cry and her ability to conceive. There also was a possibility she was sexual assaulted.

Olie, enraged, killed the drug dealer, but the damage was already done. The incident left Dinah mentally devastated, and would haunt her for many years.

7. She Is A Pop Singer

[Credit: DC Comics]
[Credit: DC Comics]

During her most recent solo series, titled Black Canary, Dinah becomes the front woman of a Pop band called "Black Canary." The band is actually a crime fighter group spearheaded by Dinah herself. Together, they tour the world in order to fight crime and bring justice around the globe. They are also known as the world's most dangerous band.

6. She Is A Team Player

[Credit: DC Comics]
[Credit: DC Comics]

Dinah, although a strong-willed and hard-headed person, is still is a good team player and a leader of several groups. She was a member of the Justice League of America, Justice League International, the Birds of Prey, the Black Canary Band, Justice League Task Force, The Network, Team 7 and her first incarnation (her mother) was also a member of the Justice Society of America.

Dinah frequently found herself either a leader or in an important leadership position in said groups. She was even the chairperson of the Justice League for one of the most trying times for the organization.

5. She Trains Her Canary Cry With A Harmonica

[Credit: DC Comics]
[Credit: DC Comics]

Singing is not the only musical talent Dinah Lance possesses; she is also a musician. Well, a harmonica player, but a musician nonetheless. While people initially wrote it off as just a hobby, it was later revealed to be far more than that. Dinah plays her harmonica in order to train her breathing technique allowing her to have a better control of his Canary Cry ability. It is also said that her training with her harmonica helped her increase the strength of her Canary Cry.

4. She Is A True Expert Of Martial Arts

[Credit: DC Comics]
[Credit: DC Comics]

If you thought that Batman was a good fighter, prepare to get your mind blown. First and foremost, Dinah was trained by Wildcat, a.k.a. Ted Grant, who in his own right is one of the best fighters in the DC Universe. She was also trained by another very deadly DC martial artist, Richard Dragon, as well as training with Lady Shiva, the DC Universe's deadliest assassin.

At this point in time, Dinah is confirmed to be a master of Aikido, Capoeira, Dragon-style Kung Fu, Hapkido, Judo, Jujutsu, Krav Maga, Muay Thai, Savate, Tae Kwon Do and Wing Chun. She also trained with Diana Prince, learning the basics of the different Amazonian martial arts and has also been trained extensively in pressure point fighting. She also seems to have a history with cage fighting and is a boxing champion.

3. She Speaks Japanese

[Credit: DC Comics]
[Credit: DC Comics]

Of all skills someone would expect of a superhero, language skills are usually the last ones. While languages would be useful in a covert operation, in open hero brawls they serve no purpose. Yet, the blond bombshell learned to speak Japanese.

To be honest, the utility of this skill lies in her partner, Katana. Katana, as seen in the Suicide Squad movie, often speaks exclusively in Japanese. In order to better communicate with her partner, Dinah had to learn to speak Japanese herself.

2. She Had The Most Killer Of Weddings

[Credit: DC Comics]
[Credit: DC Comics]

Every superhero couple dreams of finally marrying the love of their life. Some superheroes even manage to not die before their weddings. Dinah and Ollie were of the latter group of heroes and managed to have a happy and wonderful wedding. Their wedding was a huge event in the DC comics, as nearly every superhero in the DC Universe attended the wedding. The reception, however, was crushed by nearly all of the DC Universe's supervillains. The fight that ensued is one of the most epic fights in DC comics at the time, with so many heroes and villains fighting that we still can't identify all the characters present.

Fun fact: In one of the panels of the comic book we see a badger (yes, a badger) attacking the villain Phobia. No one knows who and why is there that badger, as he is confirmed to not be Beast Boy. If you want to see the badger with your own two eyes click here.

1. She Is A Biker, Kinda

[Credit: DC Comics]
[Credit: DC Comics]

The first thing that comes to mind when someone says "Black Canary" is her on her bike. Yet, her relationship with her bike is a little complicated. In her earlier comic books Dinah was a little obsessed with her bike. She got really upset every time it got destroyed and she nearly died trying to protect her bike from a gang. She later got a few more bikes, all of which were destroyed in some of her superhero stints. She even had a bike made by Superman himself, which she managed to destroy nonetheless.

It seems that at some point, the writers of her comics realized that her relationship with her bikes became unhealthy, so they dialed back her usage of her bike and her obsession with them.

This article is one of a series of articles about DC superheroes and supervillains:

  • If you want to learn more about the Darkseid click here.
  • If you want to learn more about the Green Arrow click here.


Which DC superhero would you like me to write about next?


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