SPY SMASHER III

 
Full Name: Katarina Armstrong
Codename: Spy Smasher
Nationality: American
Organization: CIA
Occupation Agent

Creator: Gail Simone
Time Span: 2007 - 2015
ABOUT THE SERIES

       Katarina Armstrong, aka Spy Smasher, is an agent with U.S. Intelligence.
       Which agency, you ask? Apparently, all of them. She has valid credentials for virtually every one of the government's alphabet soup members. FBI, DOD, CIA, BAT, etc. She also has membership rights to the U.K.'s MI-6. And she is a proud member of Checkmate, which in the DC Comics universe is a major player in fighting international terrorism as well as out-of-control meta-humans.
       How she got her codename of Spy Smasher and what her background is remains a mystery but it is not a far stretch to believe she inherited the right to the name as her last name, Armstrong, would make her likely the granddaughter of the original Spy Smasher, Alan Armstrong, likely the product of the product of his and Eve Corby's marriage. If so, she inherited more than just his name but also his good lucks, blond hair, and his incredible athleticism and marksmanship.
       There are important differences between this Spy Smasher and the original. Whereas the first one was a solo act, never getting involved with any group and preferring to go it alone and unauthorized, the second one is more of a team player. Well, as long as she is allowed to lead the team. Following is not something she does, ah, ever.
       When Katarina Armstrong walks into a room, she owns it. She would not have it any other way. She is not friendly about it. She is not particularly loud about it. It is a fact and she knows it and she makes sure everyone else there knows it as well. And if someone has the temerity to challenge her, she has the skill set to back up her chutzpah and enough enjoyment of the rough stuff that it is also a pleasure. Impressive lady. Spooky, but impressive.
       During the times she has been active, she has worked with the Birds of Prey group led by Oracle (formerly Batgirl), Checkmate, and the Secret Six. She has come up against Dick Grayson (formerly Robin and Nightwing) while he was a covert agent. She has definitely gotten around. Sometimes she loses and sometimes she is tied but usually she comes out on top and when she doesn't, it is seldom nice for those around her.
       Armstrong certainly lives up to her codename of "smasher".

COMIC BOOKS AND GRAPHIC NOVELS

Number of Issues:16
First Appearance:2007
Last Appearance:2015

       So far Katarina Armstrong, Spy Smasher, has never had her own comic series nor even a mini-series or one-shot. She has always been a "guest star" in someone else's magazine. But when she shows up, she does so with style and with a take-charge attitude. Usually her roles have been as a order-giver but when she is forced into action, she definitely shows she has what it takes.

1 Blood & Circuits Part 1: A Chance To Do Good Blood & Circuits Part 1: A Chance To Do Good
Published by DC Comics
Contributors: Nicola Scott (artist), Gail Simone (writer)
Copyright: 01/2007

From Birds of Prey #100: The Birds of Prey are involved in breaking a person out of a Mexican prison but that is not what Spy Smasher wanted to happen.

2 Blood & Circuits Part 2: Broken Wing Blood & Circuits Part 2: Broken Wing
Published by DC Comics
Contributors: Nicola Scott (artist), Gail Simone (writer)
Copyright: 02/2007

From Birds of Prey #101: -

3 Blood & Circuits Part 3: Freedom of Motion Blood & Circuits Part 3: Freedom of Motion
Published by DC Comics
Contributors: Gail Simone (writer), Nicola Scott (artist)
Copyright: 03/2007

From Birds of Prey #102: -

4 Blood & Circuits Part 4: Truth Or Dare Blood & Circuits Part 4: Truth Or Dare
Published by DC Comics
Contributors: Nicola Scott (artist), Gail Simone (writer)
Copyright: 04/2007

From Birds of Prey #103: -

5 Whitewater Part 1: Crystal Ascension Whitewater Part 1: Crystal Ascension
Published by DC Comics
Contributors: Nicola Scott (artist), Gail Simone (writer)
Copyright: 05/2007

From Birds of Prey #104: -

6 Whitewater Part 2: Permafrost Whitewater Part 2: Permafrost
Published by DC Comics
Contributors: Gail Simone (writer), Nicola Scott (artist)
Copyright: 06/2007

From Birds of Prey #105: -

7 Whitewater Part 3: Storm Front Whitewater Part 3: Storm Front
Published by DC Comics
Contributors: Nicola Scott (artist), Gail Simone (writer)
Copyright: 07/2007

From Birds of Prey #106: -

8 Whitewater Part 4: A Heart Encased In Glass Whitewater Part 4: A Heart Encased In Glass
Published by DC Comics
Contributors: Nicola Scott (artist), Gail Simone (writer)
Copyright: 08/2007

From Birds of Prey #107: (says it is Part 3) -

9 Whitewater Epilogue: Swan Song Whitewater Epilogue: Swan Song
Published by DC Comics
Contributors: Nicola Scott (artist), Gail Simone (writer)
Copyright: 09/2007

From Birds of Prey #108: -

10 Stone Cold Knockout Stone Cold Knockout
Published by DC Comics
Contributors: Gail Simone (writer), Nicola Scott (artist)
Copyright: 10/2007

From Birds of Prey #109: -

11 The Fan Club The Fan Club
Published by DC Comics
Contributors: Tony Bedard (writer), Nicola Scott (artist)
Copyright: 11/2007

From Birds of Prey #110: -

12 The Reptile Brain Part 1: Blood Calls To Blood The Reptile Brain Part 1: Blood Calls To Blood
Published by DC Comics
Contributors: J. Calafiore (artist), Gail Simone (writer)
Copyright: 11/2010

From Secret Six #25: -

13 The Reptile Brain Part 2: Forced Merger The Reptile Brain Part 2: Forced Merger
Published by DC Comics
Contributors: J. Calafiore (artist), Gail Simone (writer)
Copyright: 12/2010

From Secret Six #26: -

14 The Reptile Brain Part 3: Masked and Masked Again The Reptile Brain Part 3: Masked and Masked Again
Published by DC Comics
Contributors: J. Calafiore (artist), Gail Simone (writer)
Copyright: 01/2011

From Secret Six #27: -

15 Nemesis Nemesis
Published by DC Comics
Contributors: Tom King (writer), Mikel Janin (artist)
Copyright: 08/2015

From Grayson #9 -

16 A Ghost From The Tomb A Ghost From The Tomb
Published by DC Comics
Contributors: Tom Seeley (writer), Mikel Janin (artist)
Copyright: 12/2015

From Grayson #13 -

MY COMMENTS

       I would not have included Katarina Armstrong, aka Spy Smasher (II), in the compendium since she was always a supporting character and this site is devoted to series. However! Since she is so obviously a descendant of the original and has taken up his moniker and is such a kick-butt personality, I could not resist. I would like it if she did get a gig of her own, however short it might be but until then, I will enjoy the few times she has shown up.
       One things that is appealing about her is that she is so decidedly her own person. She is not a copy of "granddad" by any means. He was, well, a nice guy and that adjective would seldom be applied to the younger one. But she is unique and that makes her fun.

GRADE

My Grade: B

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