Tuesday, September 14, 2010

H'ronmeerca'andra (Saturn)

Millennia ago, the people of Ma'aleca'andra (Mars) began to explore and supervise life on other worlds in the Sol solar system. A series of artificial globes, each roughly the size of the planet Mercury, were constructed around the world H'ronmeerca'andra. Circling the planet more commonly known as Saturn, the globes were established to mine hydrogen and serve as manufacturing centers for the Martian people. Each dome was filled with a habitable atmosphere, allowing Martians to settle there, and protected by a ring of floating fortresses.

Never a populous people, the Ma'aleca'andrans began to clone themselves, in order to create a workforce for the globes. Red-skinned clones were engineered specifically for the Saturnian environment, but treated as equals among the Green Martian race. White-skinned "Saturnians" were produced to mimic their White Martian masters, but treated as slaves.

Civil war broke out among the Ma'aleca'andreans, and their Saturnian "offspring" were brought into the conflict. Fortresses fell and globes cracked, sending whole civilizations into space to die. The debris from this war was so great, it made up what are now called the "Rings of Saturn." Finally, the remnants of the White Martan race were exiled into the Still Zone aboard their mammoth mothership, not to be seen again until the appearance of The Hyperclan on Earth in modern times.

Unfortunately, the war did not end there. Race hatred between the White and Red Saturnians continued, even after the last of the Green Martians returned to their native planet. Within the remaining globes the races separated. Red Saturnians took to arid plains, and used the name Desert Dwellers once favored by their Green Martian progenitors. White Saturnians gravitated toward colder climates, and were dubbed the Polar People (not unlike the more humanoid Pale Martian Pole Dwellers that were themselves presumably related to White Martians.) Over time, the Saturnian races began to forget that one another existed, and separate tribes descended into barbarism. Population growth and the migration eventually brought them back into contact, and conflict, over a rare source of natural vegetation known as the Garden of Bhok.

A period of peace arrived with a Red Desert Dweller named Jargon the Mighty, who wore an organic jewel upon his brow. With this birthstone, he could "read" people's inner emotions. He saw Red and White Saturnians as brothers, and his mixed followers built a civilization around the Garden of Bhok. This was the only Saturnian property capable of producing abundant vegetation, and with it came power for Jargon. The Saturnians residing in the other, harsher globes were forced to send emissaries to Jargon for food, and in return Jargon was crowned their king, He declared an end to all war, which lasted for many centuries.

Over time, science helped Saturnians produce their own food in isolated gardens, and allowed them the ability to chart their own course anew. The flames of war reignited, causing then King Jaxx to seal off the Garden of Bhok from the conflicts. By this time, his kingdom was predominantly red-skinned, with only learned White religious teachers called "ghani" allowed within. Jaxx's own nephew, Jogarr, grew to detest the monarchy that ruled the Garden, and was exiled to prevent dissension within the kingdom. Outside, the Polar People found a potent leader in General Synnar, who cut a bloody swath through Desert Dweller forces. Jogarr, made a political hero by his exile, was elected Minister of War for the Reds, thanks to the democratic system that he had founded.

Eventually, Jaxx's wife Jarlla gave birth to Jemm, the first child since Jargon born with a birthstone of power upon his forehead. Jemm was proclaimed Lamah, savior-son of Saturn, yet the wars did not end. Years passed, and a new means of "peace" was created. Dubbed the Atom-Buster, the Reds had created a device capable of incinerating the entire "planet." Jogarr was captured, and Synnar laid claim to the device. While Jogarr toiled 300 miles below the surface in the mines, Synnar activated his new toy, and ended most all life in the Garden of Bhok and beyond. Befriended by the cretinous Borah, Joggar followed him in a rebellion against their Polar People captors after communication with the surface was cut off. Returning from the mines, they found what was left of their world, and the remaining Red Saturnians made plans to build a "space ark" to travel to a new home. Synnar, driven mad after witnessing the devastation he caused, attacked and was killed by Joggar. The Reds were carried to one of the moons of Jupiter, which they christened "New Bhok." Jogarr continued as Minister of War, while the red-skinned Bishop Rahani became the chief spiritual leader, and a new president was elected.

Meanwhile, the surviving Whites, mostly female, took their armada to the stars. They were led to New Bhok by an Earthman named Claudius Tull, who then nearly drove the Polar People race to extinction in his quest for power. Tull was killed, and peaceful relations between Whites and Reds were initiated through the efforts of Prince Jemm. Monarchical governance returned, and Jemm was set to marry the White Saturnian Princess Cha'rissa to symbolically unite the races as one people. Sabotage endangered this process, but eventually Jemm was accepted as king of all Saturnian races. During his reign, Jemm has involved the Saturnian people in the Rann-Thanagar War, confronted the people of New Krypton over their misconduct, and allowed the telepathic Lanothians to colonize the moon Titan. These Titanians will become a prominent people among the United Planets by the 30th Century, and Legion of Super-Heroes co-founder Saturn Girl (Imra Ardeen) will be amongst them. However, there has been no confirmation of the continued existence of H'ronmeerca'andrans at that point in history.


will_in_chicago said...

Well done, Frank! I like the way that you worked the history together.

As for Mars and its different versions, I do like the Mars and Mars II angles, with J'Onn having seen his homes devastated twice. (As to why he was on Mars when Dr. Erdel's device picked him up, maybe there was a boom tube/dimensional gateway/whatever between Mars and New Mars -- and J'Onn in his grief wandered blindly from devastated world to devastated world.

I would hope that the Saturnians do show up in the 30th Century.

LissBirds said...

Nice overview, and a good background to any reading on Jemm that I might take on. All of this has the stamp of Edgar Rice Burroughs all over it, too.

I'm trying to figure out if Synnar is the same Synnar was causing trouble in the recent Mystery in Space miniseries last summer. He went by "Synnar the Demiurge." He didn't resemble any Saturnian that I've ever seen, though.

The only thing that bugs me about trying to tie this all together (although m.c. has a nice rationalization) is that Martians were capable of interplanetary travel millenia ago. If they acheived space travel thousands of years ago, that would mean they are so far advanced beyond any known civilization in the DCU, almost to the point of absurdity. Plus, it flies in the face of Silver Age J'onn J'onzz being stranded on Earth, when they just could've sent a ship over to pick him up. But then again, everyone was dead. And then again, his parents were alive. Then again, he did travel back to Mars and came back to Earth.

Ugh. I'm going to stop thinking now.

Diabolu Frank said...

Thanks, Will!

Liss, I haven't read any of the "Demiurge" stuff, but I assume that Synnar is the one that originated in Jim Starlin's Hardcore Station mini-series from about a decade back. General Synnar was a White Saturnian who was killed in a flashback by Joggar (a.k.a. when J'Onn presumably killed Blanx.) The Synnar from H.S. was a big red guy (a.k.a. a typical Starlin villain.)

As for interplanetary travel by Martians, remember, according to DeMatteis, J'Onn J'Onzz traveled through space and time to the tune of hundreds of thousands of years. It seems to me the best way to resolve the discrepancy is to have had Martians devolve and go "native" by the time of J'Onn J'Onzz (which is the only clear explanation for Saturnian isolation, as well.)

LissBirds said...

Ah, I always forget about the "pulled through time" aspect. Then again, there's a lot to keep straight. And I know all the quirky things like T'omm and whatnot in 'Tec and House of Mystery got wiped in the Crisis.

Hmm...I kind of like Mars as advanced and developed rather than tribal and warring, only because I think of Mars as a better place than Earth. But then again, there's no place for Blanx if everyone got along. I'm liking the semi-amnesiac version of J'onn presented in American Secrets more and more, only because it fixes continuity mistakes by just not addressing them at all. But my brain can handle a multiple choice origin, if I try hard enough.

LissBirds said...

Oh, and about Synnar, yes, he spends time around Hardcore Station, so that's got to be him. He kind of wears a big cloak, now, I think.