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The Religious Affiliation of Comic Book Character
Joel Aaron Weinberg
Houston
of Relative Heroes

From: "Who's Jews in the Marvel & DC Universe?", posted on Orthodox Union website (OU.ORG - Your Gateway to the Jewish Internet), (http://www.ou.org/ncsy/projects/kp/5763/kpwint63/thing.htm; viewed 20 December 2005):

The Thing may be the heaviest hitter to announce his Jewish roots, but he's far from alone. There are plenty of fellow Israelites in tights to join him at the Seder table... There are others... DC has Ragman (yes, there is a character called Ragman), Joel and Aviva Weinberg of Relative Heroes...
Relative Heroes issue #1, featuring the Weinbergs

From: Ronald Byrd, "Houston" page on "Gay League" website (http://www.gayleague.com/gay/characters/display.php?id=75; viewed 21 December 2005):

Real Name: Joel Aaron Weinberg
Occupation: High school student; briefly adventurer
Base of Operations: Berkeley, California
Gender: Male
Orientation: Gay
First Appearance: Relative Heroes #1
Outed in: Relative Heroes #4, #6

History
The son of Oren and Deborah Weinberg, Joel is an ordinary fifteen-year-old boy with unusual relatives and friends; his eleven-year-old sister Aviva has electrical powers, his adopted brother sixteen-year-old Tyler Gilford can become invisible, Aviva's sixteen-year-old baby-sitter Damara Sinclaire can project mystic pheremones which influence others, [etc.]...

When Oren and Deborah die in an automobile accident, Joel represses his grief by deciding that he and the others should become super-heroes, and he convinces them to join him on a trip to Metropolis to meet Superman; Aviva, Tyler, Damara, and Cameron use the code-names Temper, Blindside, Allure, and Omni, respectively, while Joel calls himself Houston, apparentlyas a reference to the phrase, "Houston, we have a problem." Among their adventures along the way, the group stops at a diner in Bludhaven (home territory of Nightwing), where a mysterious teenage boy named Rive flirts with Houston. Rive apparently follows the Weinbergs to Metropolis and is present when Allure mesmerizes several bystanders into helping the group enter a government base to rescue Omni from the aliens who have come to claim him and Chloe; Rive is inexplicably immune to Allure's power, but he assists as part of the crowd, anyway. During a confrontation with Omni's alien race, Houston's grief about his parents finally breaks through his reserve, and he, Omni, and the other Weinbergs abandon the super-team concept and return to California. Following his parents' funeral, there are rumors of Joel and Rive dating, but nothing else is known of their relationship.

Skills
Houston is a reasonably skilled leader and, as owner of a large comic book collection, possesses a great deal of knowledge about super-heroes; according to his own self-analysis, his skills include "computers, basic stealth, automotive, swimming and politics." Rive's immunity to Allure's mystic pheremones presumably indicates that he has super-powers of some sort, but no other information about him is as yet available.

Additional Notes
Relative Heroes created by Devin Grayson and Yvel Guichet.

Discussion

From: "Passover Wave! Ragman and--?" message board started 13 April 2006 on official DC Comics website (http://dcboards.warnerbros.com/web/thread.jspa?forumID=29209087&threadID=2000071426; viewed 1 June 2006):
hateradereloaded
Posted: Apr 13, 2006 10:10 AM

Any other Jewish Superheroes besides RAGMAN?...


mrblisterfists
Posted: Apr 13, 2006 10:29 AM

...Superman's a Jew, as are the Weinbergs...


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Webpage created 21 December 2005. Last modified 1 June 2006.
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