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  • The Question
  • The question
  • The Question
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  • Pages: 8
  • As conceived by Ditko, the Question was an adherent of Objectivism during his career as a minor Charlton hero, much like Ditko's earlier creation, Mr. A. In a 1987-1990 solo series from DC, the character developed a Zen-like philosophy.
  • The main question is: What is the real quality of life and how can we bring some into our lives? This question can be divided into: 1. * What is the real quality of life? 2. * How can we bring some quality into our lives?
  • Janette's leaving rekindles an old relationship.
  • The Question, similar in design to the Balloon-Head Conductor, is a tuxedo-clad character with a pink balloon for a head. Appropriately, the Question's balloon head has a big question mark where its face should be. In the "At the Dance" sketch on The Muppet Show episode 115, George the Janitor asks Mildred if he can pop the Question. She says yes, so he does.
  • thumb|270px|The QuestionThe Question ("Die Frage") ist der Titel einer Geschichte aus der The Adventures of Professor Obligado-Reihe der Mirage Studios.
  • The Question is a wrestler who left his federation and decided to become a detective. He works in and around New York City, dealing with violent and unpredictable criminals. Wears a mask that make it appear as if he has no face, both to conceal his identity and to unnerve the criminals he tracks. Decided to come to the Lock Wrestling Federation because he felt that there were many problems there, problems that no one had the stomach or even the ability to truly clean up. Works off of no one's agenda but his own.
  • A young Qua boy walks into the cave, without a word, bearing a basket of cloth-wrapped dry white bread - a small loaf. He sets the basket on the edge of the spring. Fulton glances at the boy. "Thank you." The boy ponders the offworlder for a moment. He seems about to speak, a question on the tip of his tongue, but he stops himself, turns and walks away. Fulton watches after the boy, as he leaves, then looks towards the basket. A sweet-smelling mist begins to roll into the cave through vents low on the rock walls. Fulton sniffs the air, quickly looking around. "What in the-?" Think...
  • The Question was, according to the Teselecta's computer, "the first question, the oldest question in the universe, hidden in plain sight". It was the organising principle for the religious movement known as the Silence, who believed that "silence will fall when the Question is asked". Accordingly, they called themselves the "Academy of the Question." More specifically, the Silence believed that
  • A classic Charlton character created by Steve Ditko who later migrated over to DC. The Question first appeared in the backpages of Blue Beetle vol. 5 #1 (June, 1967). Vic Sage was a television reporter for Hub City when he was visited by his friend and former professor Aristotle "Tot" Rodor, who had invented an artificial skin he called "pseudoderm." Unfortunately, Tot had discovered that pseudoderm occasionally became toxic when exposed to open wounds and he decided not to produce or distribute the material. His partner decided to continue to manufacture pseudoderm anyway and, to stop him, Tot provided a "mask" of pseudoderm to Vic to use in his investigations. Thus the Question was born.
Char
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dateposted
  • November 1998
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Name
  • The Question
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  • Hub City
Alter Ego info
  • Charles Victor "Charlie" Szasz, "Q"
Traitor Game History
  • Traitor Game History
Roles info
  • TG XIV - NPC
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  • First TG Appearance
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  • Traitor Game Rivals
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  • Justice League
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  • Erratic, skeptical, and unrelenting nature makes The Question an extremely effective investigator. Well trained martial artist and hand to hand combatant and espionage expert.
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  • DC Comics
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  • Detective
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  • The Question
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  • The Question
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  • Thequestion.JPG
Alter Ego
  • Alter Ego
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  • Pages: 8
  • As conceived by Ditko, the Question was an adherent of Objectivism during his career as a minor Charlton hero, much like Ditko's earlier creation, Mr. A. In a 1987-1990 solo series from DC, the character developed a Zen-like philosophy.
  • A young Qua boy walks into the cave, without a word, bearing a basket of cloth-wrapped dry white bread - a small loaf. He sets the basket on the edge of the spring. Fulton glances at the boy. "Thank you." The boy ponders the offworlder for a moment. He seems about to speak, a question on the tip of his tongue, but he stops himself, turns and walks away. Fulton watches after the boy, as he leaves, then looks towards the basket. With a small nod to himself, he turns his gaze towards the spring. Spirits? Nonsense. Thoughts cruise up and down his mind, but he quickly shakes them off, deciding its best to focus on that which needs to be thought upon. A sweet-smelling mist begins to roll into the cave through vents low on the rock walls. Fulton sniffs the air, quickly looking around. "What in the-?" The mist smells like orange blossoms - and it tends to put you at ease. It does not harm you, or render you unconscious. It simply makes you feel...content to be. Fulton turns his gaze back at the spring. Tilting his head slightly back, he closes his eyes, and feels calmness sweep him over. You hear the sound of feet padding into the cave through the entrance, and rapid, raspy breathing. Fulton opens his eyes quite slowly, not at all startled, and glances towards the entrance, looking for the source of the sounds. Opposite the spring from you stands a wolf with gray fur, strong haunches and bright blue eyes that study you with brilliant intensity. Thanks to the effects of the mist, it doesn't seem to surprise you at all, really, when the creature speaks: "You seek the wisdom of the guides?" "I do." Fulton replied simply, staring at the wolf. The wolf's tongue lolls out, a look that might almost be mistaken as mirth on its face. "What is your question?" Fulton says, "Can you tell me what I need to do about Fagin? Grim? I mean, this whole thing. It's... too much. I just don't know what to do. I don't know if what I'm asking is even a proper question, but it is what drove me here." The wolf begins to pad around the spring, approaching to within about four feet of Fulton - close, but still out of reach and, presumably, in a position of unthreatening demeanor. "Such questions are of the material world, and not of much use to the spirits. They are transient things. Your troubles...are deeper than that. Ask the true question." Fulton shakes his head. "What... true question? I know nothing more than that which bothers me, and that's..." Pauses, seeming to think for a few moments. "Fagin, and Grim, both of them and their goonies. Me being here is probably a mistake..." The wolf breathes in silence for a few moments before speaking again. "You being here is a good thing. You are confused. You are harried. You must take time to breathe and know yourself, your thoughts, and find your question. I will return...when you know the question." The wolf turns and pads out of the chamber - fading into invisibility as he goes. Fulton stares after the wolf, until it dissapears. He moves back, until reaching the curved-wall, and leans against it. He closes his eyes. True question? What can that be? Think, Joe, think! Your own voice seems to echo back in the cave, through the caverns: "Think, Joe, think!" Fulton tilts his head back, feeling the hard stone agaisnt his scalp. What can there be? There is nothing! What do this spirits know, anyway? Fagin is the problem! Messer and Jest need help, because of Fagin, therein lies the problem. What question? Think! Think! Think! think...think... Fulton's mind wanders off, in his memory, to all that has occurred in his life, until now. The look on his father's eyes when he told him he was leaving to become an adventurer. All his small jobs, meeting Jest, meeting Messer, and so on and forth. What is the question? There has to be one... Think... Another figure walks into the cavern, vaguely Fulton-shaped, but wrapped in shadows. Fulton feels the presence and opens his eyes, looking at the shadowy figure. The Fulton-shade drops to one knee on the other side of the spring. "Jesus, what a mess." Fulton watches quietly, confusedly. The Fulton-shade stares across at Fulton. "Oh, great, you've gone mute on me." Fulton swallows. "Who- Who are you?" He says, unaware of how low his voice is. The Fulton-shade replies, "You, I guess." Fulton stands up, slowly, staring at the shadow-covered figure. "Me? What are you talking about? I am-" Pauses, reminding himself of what this place is. "Ah, of course. So you are me. And why are you here? To tell me what the supposed question is?" The Fulton-shade tilts its head. "You know the question. Look inside your heart. Into your mind. It is there." Fulton shakes his head stubbornly. "No. I tried looking, but found nothing. I am telling you, there is nothing. And if you are me, you know that. Absolutely no question. All problems are material, the world is material. No offensse to the spirits, but they've got me confused with normal people." Folds his arms. The Fulton-shade laughs. "Yeah. Right. You're more normal than you know. The only difference is superficial. You seem to get chased around and shot at more than the usual mortal." Fulton says, "So I do. Which happens to be the problem. See? You yourself have found the true question. Material question." The Fulton-shade asks, "You were staring up at the sky. Why?" Fulton squints, slightly amazed at this. "Well, uhm.." Pauses, actually lacking of an answer. "What kind of question is that? I look at the sky because I'd rather look at that, than the ground. Bah, that's a real dumb question. The sky is calming, soothing, while the ground reminds me of those material things I wanna forget." The Fulton-shade rises to his feet. "You are closer to the true question than you believe." Fulton shakes his head, absent-mindedly stepping back. "Stop trying to confuse me, cuz' it won't work. I just answered you, and proved to you how the material holds questions, only." The Fulton-shade asks, "If that which is material holds questions, then what does the sky contain?" Fulton says, "Well, it certainly is not the answers, if that's what you want me to say. If the sky had the answers, I would not have felt the need to come here." The Fulton-shade says, "Nah, I was just being pithy." Fulton lets his arms drop to his sides, shaking his head. "Look, I think I'd know more about myself than spirits would. So, I tell you, there is no question. At least, no spiritual question. I mean, really, what are spiritual questions? I don't even know what a spiritual question could be. Like, 'Is there a god?' or something? Gimme a break." The shade chuckles, shaking his head in a facsimile of his originator. "Gimme a break. Don't tell me you never wonder if it's worth it to run. If it's worth it to fight. What it all means. Where it all leads." Fulton clenches his hands into tight fists. "No, I have not. I don't care about that either. It's worth fighting to stay alive, yes. It's worth running for the same reason. And the meaning of it all, well... That I do not know, and do no care to know, for I have the answer to the other two." The shade shrugs insubstantially. "That's a rationalization if I ever heard one. You do care. It is the question. A simple question: Why bother?" Fulton says, "You know, for someone who is supossed to be me, you sure are stubborn. I already told you, to stay alive, and there ain't no better answer than that." The Fulton-shade says, "If that ain't the pot calling the kettle black, I don't know what is. If it's just about staying alive, why the hell do you care what happens to Jest? What happens to Messer? If all you cared about was staying alive, why would you sign on with those people in the first place? It is, in fact, a really dangerous line of work." Fulton says, "Because I wanted to live an adventerous /life/. My life. I don't care about anyone else's. Jest and Messer are allies, and companions. If I have to choose between them and I, I choose myself!"" The Fulton-shade raises his hands as if to defend himself. "Whoa, Joey boy, no one's asking whether you'd pick them over yourself. But...funny thing is, you put yourself in harm's way on Demaria. Didn't you?" Fulton says, "What are you implying? Of course I did. Why would I not? It was... adventerous." The Fulton-shade chuckles. "It was suicide. But you bought Messer and Jest time." Fulton shrugs. "So what? That wasn't the actual purpose..." Pauses. "...The reason I stayed! Man, you really are dumb. Come on, if you are me, then you know this." Chuckles nervously. "Keep 'em coming, boy, I have an answer to one and all." The Fulton-shade nods. "Those aren't answers. Those are pat, practiced excuses. You and I know the truth." Fulton says, "Yes, I know the truth. I only care for myself. Why in the world would I care if this people, who I hardly know, make it or not?" The Fulton-shade claps his insubstantial hands. "Hallelujah! We come full circle! Why bother, he asks!" The shadow fades. Suddenly, a foot-long iguana materializes on the rock ledge of the spring, flicking its forked tongue at Fulton. Fulton glares. "Wha- You tricked me!" Watches it dissapear, immediately feeling the Iguana's presence. He glances at it, shaking his head. "This is ridiculous." The lizard rolls its eyes at Fulton. "Are you really doing them any good, hiding on this planet? Fulton ponders the answer, then speaks. "Probably not. So... so what?" The lizard twists its head to the left. "Real adventurous, skulking around in the spaceport, yeah?" Fulton shrugs. "I am... waiting." The lizard chuffs a laugh. "For what?" Fulton says, "For the right time to leave." The lizard asks: "When is that? Fulton says, "When I feel it's safe." The lizard chuckles. "Safe? Mr. Adventure?" Fulton says, "I may like adventure, but am no fool. I treasure life dearly. And if you must know, the right time was a few day, until that hunter lost trail, or calmed down, or something." The lizard fixes its orb-like eyes on Fulton. "The time has come. You must go and seek your comrades - friends - whatever you choose to call them. The future awaits." Fulton says, "What future? Death?" Slowly, the mist fades - taking the lizard along with it. Fulton says, "Dammit! Don't you dare leave! I want an anwer!" The word echoes: Answer...answer...answer... Fulton shouts quite loudly. "Come back!" Back...back...back... Stargazer arrives from Twisting Passage. Fulton lets his fists open, calming down. "Very well, spirits. I will go. I have no idea where, but I will." Walks over to the basket with bread. Picking it up, he turns to the exit, noticing Star. "Oh, hello." Stargazer strides into the chamber, glancing around. He brings his attention back to Fulton. "Are you all right?" Fulton gives Stargazer a small smile. "Yes..." Nods. "I am. Thank you, Mister Stargazer. I think I'm done here." Stargazer nods. "I am curious. What animal is your guide?" Fulton says, "Well, first there was a wolf, then a lizard." Stargazer clasps his hands behind his back. "Which one advised you on your path?" Fulton says, "The lizard. I don't see what that has to do with anything, though. Does it matter what my guide was?" Stargazer nods. "Yes, if you wish to know the significance of the creature." Fulton nods. "Yeah, I guess I do." Stargazer says, "You say it was a lizard, yes?" Fulton nods. "Yes. An..." Thinks back on the many animal books he read. "An Iguana, I believe." Stargazer begins to pace slowly around the cavern, tracing the markings on the wall with his fingers. "The lizard's medicine is the medicine of dreamers. He can help you see the shadows of your dreams, which can be your fears, your hopes - even that which you are resisting with every fiber of your being. But always, it follows. The lizard teaches us to pay heed to our dreams, for they may guide us." Fulton sighs. "Of course.." He says relunctantly. Stargazer smiles, coming to a stop and glancing toward Fulton. "Did you find your answer?" Fulton says, "I'm not sure. That remains to be seen, still." Stargazer nods. "Good luck in your journey." Fulton nods as well, smiling. "Thank you, for everything." Stargazer says, "Of course." Fulton turns and walks over to the exit, stopping and glancing back. "Have a good day, Mister Stargazer." Stargazer nods, going back to study the markings on the walls. Fulton heads into Twisting Passage.
  • The Question is a wrestler who left his federation and decided to become a detective. He works in and around New York City, dealing with violent and unpredictable criminals. Wears a mask that make it appear as if he has no face, both to conceal his identity and to unnerve the criminals he tracks. Decided to come to the Lock Wrestling Federation because he felt that there were many problems there, problems that no one had the stomach or even the ability to truly clean up. Works off of no one's agenda but his own. In October 2008, the true identity of The Question was revealed to be "The Talk of the Town" Alan Fernandez
  • The main question is: What is the real quality of life and how can we bring some into our lives? This question can be divided into: 1. * What is the real quality of life? 2. * How can we bring some quality into our lives?
  • Janette's leaving rekindles an old relationship.
  • A classic Charlton character created by Steve Ditko who later migrated over to DC. The Question first appeared in the backpages of Blue Beetle vol. 5 #1 (June, 1967). Vic Sage was a television reporter for Hub City when he was visited by his friend and former professor Aristotle "Tot" Rodor, who had invented an artificial skin he called "pseudoderm." Unfortunately, Tot had discovered that pseudoderm occasionally became toxic when exposed to open wounds and he decided not to produce or distribute the material. His partner decided to continue to manufacture pseudoderm anyway and, to stop him, Tot provided a "mask" of pseudoderm to Vic to use in his investigations. Thus the Question was born. However, most early stories tended to show the Question mainly as a mouthpiece for Ditko's Objectivist philosophy, similar to his Mr. A stories. Like most Charlton comics it folded when the company went under and was bought by DC. When DC decided to reboot some of the characters it had acquired from Charlton it was decided that the Question was to get a whole new image for his next series, which debuted in 1987. In the beginning of Dennis O'Neil's series the Question is viciously beaten by Lady Shiva, then shot in the head with a pellet gun and Left for Dead. Shiva, however, rescues him and takes him to train with Richard Dragon, who also provides him with a new Eastern philosophical outlook. When he returns to Hub City he finds his old flame Myra is now married to the drunken mayor and the crime is worse than ever. O'Neil's series has partly been collected into six trade paperbacks. Eventually, after a few years he decides to leave Hub City. He reappeared in 52 as the mentor to Renee Montoya before revealing that he was dying of lung cancer. He died in issue #38 (March, 2007). Renee assumed the mantle of the Question in issue #48 (June, 2007), with the help of Tot and Richard Dragon. She continued the mission he had been working on before his death: Investigating the Religion of Crime and Intergang. She appeared in two limited series, The Question: Five Books of Blood and Final Crisis: Revelations, and eventually became the second feature in Greg Rucka's Detective Comics. While combating Vandal Savage in the Detective Comics feature Renee was forced to take from him the "Mark of Cain," supposedly the mark placed by God on Cain to forever label him as a murderer and an eternal subject of ridicule and scorn. The 2010 Detective Comics annual edition revealed that she had indeed been marked. She now bears a scarred cross on her face and is viewed with shock and distrust by all she meets, but she has refused the offered means of removing the Mark, either giving it to another or committing suicide, as her tenure as the Question has given her maturity, outlook and philosophy to handle the Mark. As of the New 52, the Question seems to have been completely reinvented, appearing in the Free Comic Book Day oneshot as one of the beings on the Rock of Eternity, punished along with The Phantom Stranger and Pandora for undisclosed sins. His punishment is that his name and face will forever be forgotten; that's not a mask any more. The Vic Sage Question also appeared in Justice League Unlimited, in which he was a fan favorite. Indeed, while Question had been around for decades before JLU, it was his appearances there that skyrocketed his popularity amongst comics fans. Also, the character of Rorschach in Watchmen started out simply being The Question, until DC vetoed the use of existing characters and Alan Moore was forced to create an original Objectivist conspiracy theorist instead. As a Shout-Out, one canonical comic, written by Moore, has the Question reading Watchmen and commenting on Rorschach's methods--then trying them and getting his ass kicked, ultimately concluding, "Rorschach sucks." * Adaptation Distillation / Adaptation Displacement: Even though JLU's Question is far different from the regular DC Question, fans still love him. However, the flip side is some fans expect the comic Question to be identical to his animated appearance and are confused by his different personality points. * Affirmative Action Legacy: Renee Montoya, who is a Hispanic lesbian. * The Alcoholic: Fifty Two opens, and occasionally goes back to, Renee as a heavy drinker trying to forget what happened in Gotham Central. Creator commentary reveals that the intention was for Renee to be an actual alcoholic at this point, and not simply on a brief or minor bender. It was only with the help of Vic Sage that she was able to pull herself together. * Author Appeal: Greg Rucka, the predominant writer for the Question storyline in 52 and the author for her three subsequent appearances (The Question: Five Books of Blood, Final Crisis: Revelations and the second-feature in Detective Comics) was the author to originally develop the Montoya character in Gotham Central and has a history of writing strong female characters. * Author Tract: The Ur Example in comics. Steve Ditko often used the comic as a soapbox for Objectivism during its Charlton run, though to a lesser degree than the similar character Mr. A. * Awesomeness By Analysis * Badass Longcoat: With his trenchcoat and fedora, he is pretty awesome. * Badass Normal: Neither Vic Sage nor Renee Montoya have any superhuman powers or even gadgets, their sole technological gimmick being their mask. Still, they manage to face off against monsters, mutants and aliens with advanced technology on a semi-regular basis. * Bad Cop, Incompetent Cop: Hub City is a Wretched Hive unmatched in the DC Universe, and that includes the ever-hated Gotham City. The FBI yearly analysis lists Hub City's police department as the most corrupt department in the country, and even the honest cops currently trying to improve the department have bad history; the current straight-arrow chief only became a crusader for integrity because of what he encountered when he was out shaking down local criminals and businesses for the bribes they owed him. * The Blank: Practically the Trope Codifier. * Bunny Ears Lawyer * Butterfly of Death and Rebirth: Not a real butterfly, but rather Vic's last words are telling Montoya how she has to change "...like butterflies." * Cain and Abel: In Final Crisis: Revelations, a limited series written by Greg Rucka that takes place within the larger Final Crisis story, the Question and Huntress combat, amongst others, Vandal Savage. Here it is revealed that Savage is the Biblical Cain, who committed the first murder and is worshipped by the Religion of Crime as a messianic figure and the bringer of all crime, and he is now using the Spear of Destiny to enslave The Spectre and conquer the world. * Canon Immigrant: Montoya was created as a side character for Batman: The Animated Series. She has come a long way. * Canon Invasion: The Question was originally owned by Charlton Comics before said company was bought out by DC. The character was introduced to the main DC Universe Post-Crisis. * Cartwright Curse: Montoya's friends and partners tend to have a short lifespan. * Catch Phrase: 'Obvious, in hindsight'. At least, for the Justice League Unlimited version of the character. * Characterization Marches On: Her sexuality is a defining character trait for her under Greg Rucka, but when Renee Montoya was originally created for Batman: The Animated Series the plan (According to background info in the series bible) was that she was originally intended to be driven in her own fight on crime by the memory of her dead husband. The same source also says that she butts heads with Batman over his methods, whereas in-series she admires him and understands why he acts outside the law. * Coat, Hat, Mask: Montoya usually does not even have the coat; she just wears the mask and hat over whatever she was wearing that day. Covers and such usually depict her in the blue suit, though. In the Denny O'Neil series Vic Sage had a tendency to do that, too; in one particular issue he sported a leather jacket and a cap. * Conspiracy Theorist: JLU Question. The full extent of his theories have not been revealed, but he believes in a single, all-encompassing cabal of powerful individuals who have ruled the earth since Ancient Egypt, currently connected to such diverse phenomena as crop circles and boy bands. He hasn't figured out how it all ties together, but he's convinced that it does. There is also a hidden background to the plastic tip on the end of shoelaces, aglets, whose true purpose is sinister. * Costumed Nonsuper Hero * Cut Himself Shaving: Vic's explanations of why he did not have a face could be downright hilarious. * Deadpan Snarker: To varying degrees in most incarnations. Especially so in his DC comic book appearances. * Despair Event Horizon: This is what prompted Charlie to leave Hub City in the finale of his solo series and to wander until he became a regular in 52. In the latter series, Vic Sage dies of cancer in a truly godawful manner, groaning in a haunting fashion, and leaves Renee alone just outside the gates of Nanda Parbat. She seems okay, but without Charlie she is so lost and alone that she does not even know who she is. * Driven to Suicide: The 2010 Detective Comics annual edition reveals that, as a child, Renee once tried to kill herself when she began to question her sexuality and confronted the religious implications. Her introduction in Fifty Two featured her drinking heavily after the events of Gotham Central, and her narration implies that she is literally trying to drink herself to death. * Dying to Be Replaced: Renee Montoya and Vic Sage were added to the cast of 52 with the specific intention of killing Vic and replacing him with Renee. The series was a smash critical and financial success, as were subsequent stories to star Renee as the Question, but the decision did generate some controversy for the seemingly unnecessary killing of a well-established character just to give his replacement motivation and a title to bear. * Heroes Want Redheads: Myra, Vic Sage's love interest, was a redhead, and even Montoya has a history with the new redheaded Batwoman. * Heroic Bastard: He does not make a big deal of it, but Sage is well aware that, since he was raised in an orphanage, it is extremely likely that he is a literal bastard. * Hot Chick in a Badass Suit: Renee's preferred attire. * How Dare You Die on Me!: Happens in the finale of 52, after Renee's girlfriend Kate is kidnapped and stabbed through the heart. Luckily, she makes it. * Ice Cream Koan: Averted, especially during the O'Neil run, as he was quite well schooled in philosophy and would often include a recommended reading list at the end of issues. * Insult Backfire: * Intrepid Reporter: Sage's day job; his beating at the hands of Lady Shiva came when the subjects of his investigation were trying to lure Sage himself into a trap, and were surprised when the Question came instead. Of course, that raises serious doubts about their intelligence, since they were unable to make the logical assumption that Sage was the Question, not even when Sage disappears the same day Question does after this attack. When the Big Bad, Reverend Hatch, figured it out, everyone else was just convinced he was nuts because he also thought Sage was a ghost returned to haunt him (or a messenger sent by either God or the Devil). * Law Enforcement, Inc.: At one stage Myra was considering sacking Hub City's notoriously corrupt police force and hiring biker gangs to enforce the law. * Legacy Character: Why he started is a mystery known only to him, but Vic Sage helped bring Renee Montoya back from alcoholism and despair and trained her in his ways of combat and thought. When he succumbed to lung cancer, she assumed the mantle of the Question and has returned to Hub City to continue his fight. * Mark of Shame: After her last encounter with Vandal Savage, where she was forced to take from the him the "Mark of Cain," Renee now bears a cross scarred into her face that causes everybody to view her with shock and disgust. * Name of Cain: The new Batwoman, Katherine "Kate" Kane, was introduced in the Renee Montoya/Question storyline of Fifty Two, and it took several weeks for anybody (Even Renee) to make even the slighest connection between Kane and Cain. * Nice Hat: His fedora. * Obfuscating Disability: Richard Dragon. * Orphanage of Fear: As Charles Victor Szasz, Vic grew up in one. * Palette Swap: Rare non videogame example. Both versions are able to slip into their disguise at a moment's notice by simply activating the gas, which changes the color of their clothing and hair, as well as bonding the mask to their face. * Platonic Life Partners: Both Renee and Vic, and later on Renee and Huntress have this dynamic. * The Power of Trust: One JLU comic book had a story where the paranoid Question tries to find which member of the League had planted a bomb. He refuses help from the other heroes since he distrusts all of them. It turned out to have been done by himself, under a villain's mind control. Obviously An Aesop about the fact that sometimes you just have to trust others. Extra points for having The Question rescued by Martian Manhunter, his prime suspect. * The Professor: Professor Aristotle Rodor, although he is less about making inventions and more about helping out Vic. * The Rashomon: The Question Quarterly #5 is one of these. It starts with the Question punching the mayor in the face, then several characters speculate on why he did it, with each version drawn by a different artist. Izzy O'Toole tells a standard Film Noir story, a pair of crackheads claim that the Question was a disfigured psychopath, and the Mayor herself finally explains that he knocked her out to prevent a desperate deal with a group of gunrunners to bring in some money to the city. The Question finally shows up and tells them they are all wrong. It turns out he went against his uncompromising nature and made the deal himself. He just did not want Myra to meet the criminals face to face for fear they would double cross her. * Reality Ensues: Vic Sage was a heavy smoker and, even though he ditches the habit early in O'Neil's run, when he appears in Fifty Two he has developed advanced lung cancer. There is no miracle cure, there is no alien healing technology, he just slowly wastes away physically and mentally before dying in the snow outside Nanda Parbat. *sob* * Real Men Wear Pink: In some adaptations, Vic shows an unusual fondness for pop music, specifically the type favored by middle-school girls. He starts singing it to himself while breaking into a building. In several of the Ditko and early Cowan stories, the gas turns the Question's shirt salmon. * Redheaded Hero: Vic, although the gas that bonds the pseudoderm also changes his hair color to black and his clothes to blue. * Religion of Evil: Montoya's main bad guys generally come from the Religion of Crime (which they prefer to call the Dark Faith or the Way of Sin), who have an obsession with an old girlfriend and who Sage had been following for months before they met. * Sex for Solace: Renee admits that she has a well-established pattern of dealing with emotional trauma, namely getting drunk and then hopping into the first bed she can find. Charlie helps her confront this part of herself and a significant part of her character arc comes when she is able to deal with loss emotionally instead of falling back into old habits. * Smoking Is Cool: No. No it is not. * Sword Over Head: In one memorable scene, the Question warns a hoodlum about to drop an innocent off of a very tall building. "Drop her and you're going straight after her." The unfortunate innocent is dropped: the Question rushes the thug and leaves him hanging by his finger-tips over certain death. Question: "I told you what would happen if you dropped her, didn't I? (waves)...Bye." He then walks away, only to turn back seconds later and pull the thug to safety. However, he then delivers a Crowning Moment of Awesome as he pummels the tar out of the now tearfully-grateful thug: "Just one thing: don't THANK me. Don't EVER thank me." He then walks off, musing to himself, "I'll never be played by Chuck Norris. Or Charles Bronson." * Token Minority: After some complaints about the complete lack of minorities in the Birds of Prey, author Gail Simone has confirmed that she will be using Renee as a guest star in an upcoming storyline. And of course, this news went over very well with fans. * Vigilante Man: The Mikado * Villainous Rescue: Lady Shiva saved Vic's life, after she had viciously beaten him, because she said he had a "warrior's passion". * What a Piece of Junk!: Vic Sage used to drive a beat-up VW Bug. That had a Porsche racing engine in it. Awesomely enough, this is completely doable in real life. * What the Heck Is An Aglet?: The famous line from Justice League Unlimited: "The tips at the end of shoelaces are called aglets. Their true purpose is sinister." * What the Hell, Hero?: "You have purchased that with blood money. You've let a killer go free in exchange. You should both be ashamed of yourselves. And if he were here right now... Charlie would be, too." * What You Are in the Dark: Literally. After Vic's death Renee becomes listless and undriven, and undergoes a ritual in the darkness of a cave, trying to figure out who she is. It is only after days spent in pitch black that she is able to figure that out. What does she see? "Good question." * Who Shot JFK?: "There was a magic bullet. It was forged by Illuminati mystics to prevent us from learning the truth!" * Wretched Hive: Hub City; it is worse than Gotham.
  • The Question, similar in design to the Balloon-Head Conductor, is a tuxedo-clad character with a pink balloon for a head. Appropriately, the Question's balloon head has a big question mark where its face should be. In the "At the Dance" sketch on The Muppet Show episode 115, George the Janitor asks Mildred if he can pop the Question. She says yes, so he does.
  • thumb|270px|The QuestionThe Question ("Die Frage") ist der Titel einer Geschichte aus der The Adventures of Professor Obligado-Reihe der Mirage Studios.
  • The Question was, according to the Teselecta's computer, "the first question, the oldest question in the universe, hidden in plain sight". It was the organising principle for the religious movement known as the Silence, who believed that "silence will fall when the Question is asked". Accordingly, they called themselves the "Academy of the Question." More specifically, the Silence believed that ... on the Fields of Trenzalore, at the fall of the Eleventh, when no living creature can speak falsely or fail to answer, a question will be asked — a question that must never ever be answered: "Doctor who?"Dorium Maldovar The Silence planned to kill the Doctor, whom they believed was the only one who knew the answer to the Question. At one point, they attempted to do this by turning Melody Pond into a weapon to kill the Doctor. Her first attempt was in 1938 Berlin and then again in 2011 on the beach of Lake Silencio. Although this attempt also failed, the Silence (as well as the rest of the universe) believed it was successful. Unbeknownst to the Silence, the Doctor had used the Teselecta to fake his death at Lake Silencio. (TV: The Impossible Astronaut, Let's Kill Hitler, The Wedding of River Song) Dorium Maldovar told the Doctor that "silence will fall when the question is asked" was a poor translation. A better translation would be "silence must fall..." Although the Teselecta's databases were unable to identify the Question, Dorium claimed to know it. According to him, the Question was actually, "Doctor who?" (TV: Let's Kill Hitler, The Wedding of River Song) Some of the events described in Maldovar's "prophecy" seemingly came to pass when the Eleventh Doctor and several companions were drawn to Trenzalore by the Great Intelligence, but these events were not what the "prophecy" actually referred to. On Trenzalore, a future version of the Doctor's TARDIS was found, but the doors were sealed and the only way to enter was by answering the question, "Doctor who?" — uttering the Doctor's true name. The Great Intelligence threatened the lives of the Doctor's companions in order to force him to reveal the answer; however, he did not need to as River Song, due to being a non-corporeal data ghost at this point in time, and who was aware of the Doctor's true name, was able to utter it from outside the TARDIS, opening the doors and preventing the Doctor from having to reveal the secret. (TV: The Name of the Doctor) The question was actually a transmission being broadcast across all of time and space, making it the "oldest question in the universe," and was used as a code by the Time Lords on Gallifrey who were sealed inside a pocket universe. They were transmitting the message through a crack in time on the planet Trenzalore, asking the Doctor to speak his true name in order to let them know that it was safe to emerge from the pocket universe. Along with the Question, the Time Lords also transmitted a Truth Field which enveloped the town of Christmas so that the Doctor could not lie if he were to answer the Question. This prompted a siege on the planet by a host of alien races who wanted to prevent the start of another time war, but they were held off for almost 900 years by a combination of the Doctor and a force field that had been put in place by the Papal Mainframe. In response to this, Tasha Lem commissioned a faith change and established the Church of the Silence, dedicating it to the cause of maintaining the Doctor's silence and keeping him from speaking his name. However, the Kovarian chapter, an offshoot of the Church, went to more extreme measures in their attempts to prevent the Doctor from speaking his name and releasing the Time Lords, travelling back along his timeline and attempting to kill him retroactively. One of their attempts on the Doctor's life involved the destruction of his TARDIS, although this attempt backfired on them and ended up creating the very cracks in time through which the Time Lords were calling. The conflict on Trenzalore eventually boiled down to the point that only the Daleks remained at war with the Church and the Doctor. The Doctor, having run out of regenerations and convinced of his foreseen death on the planet, intended to let the Daleks kill him, but Clara Oswald believed that the future could be changed and implored the Time Lords to help the Doctor. Ultimately, she became the one to answer the Question, although she stated that the Doctor's real name was simply "the Doctor," and that the meaning behind that answer was a sufficient-enough reason for the Time Lords to give him their support, which they then did by changing the future and granting the Doctor a brand new regenerative cycle, thereby allowing him to defeat the Daleks and survive the battle. (TV: The Time of the Doctor)
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