Meteorite in flight. Art by Mark Bagley
|First appearance||Thunderbolts #48|
|Created by||Fabian Nicieza|
|Alter ego||Valerie Barnhardt|
Fictional character biography
Valerie Barnhardt was the daughter of former New Warriors pilot Sprocket and the super villain Cardinal. Valerie's parents, who were mercenaries at the time, had a drunken one night stand in Rhodesia. Josh left Amelia with the bar tab and disappeared never knowing that Amelia was pregnant from their one night stand.
Amelia was never a very nurturing mother and she and Valerie would often clash. When Valerie was a teenager Amelia sent her to military school (presumably financed by the mercenary jobs). Later Valerie joined the Air Force as a pilot. Valerie was raped by her commanding officer. In response to this Valerie severely injured and/or crippled the officer and was jailed as a result. The Air Force took the commanding officer's word over hers and she was incarcerated.[volume & issue needed]
The Commission on Superhuman Activities offered her a pardon on the condition that she served as a member of their team the Redeemers and fight the Thunderbolts. They gave her the name Meteorite and a suit that was able to create "Hard Air" which was patterned after the powers of Colin Hume aka Windshear a former member of Alpha Flight. With this suit Meteorite could fly, generate a force field around her body or extend the field outwards to use as an offensive weapon.[volume & issue needed]
After the battle with the Thunderbolts the Redeemers moved into the Thunderbolts headquarters of Mount Charteris in Burton Canyon, Colorado where they were trained by Captain America and were under the supervision of S.H.I.E.L.D.[volume & issue needed]
The Redeemers were ambushed by Graviton and several members were sadistically murdered. Meteorite was sent to die in the vacuum of space. Her body was recovered weeks later by S.H.I.E.L.D. and Sprocket asked for a DNA test to confirm Cardinal was Meteorite's father. Cardinal didn't know he had a daughter until Sprocket visited him in prison and told him of Valerie's death. Anger over her death and his illogical blaming of Hawkeye for the continued Redeemer program was part of his motivation to rejoin the Crimson Cowl's Masters of Evil and ultimately the Thunderbolts.[volume & issue needed]
Powers and abilities
Meteorite had the ability to generate an aura of unknown energy, which condensed ambient air molecules into a protective shield of "hard air". Her force field could be used to deflect physical attacks, or rapidly extended to attack others. The energy aura that created her air shield also allowed her to fly at incredible speeds.
- Meteorite was also the name used by Karla Sofen aka Moonstone during the Thunderbolts original masquerade as heroes. Karla dropped the name and went back to Moonstone once the team turned on Baron Zemo.
- The identity was originally used by Ned Lathrop of the mutant group the Resistants. Ned Lathrop had also used the identity Lifter.