Blue Beetle: Will the Animated Series Introduce Ted Kord and Dan Garrett?

The new animated series could continue the events of the 2023 movie.

DC fans got an unexpected piece of news on Friday, with reports that a Blue Beetle animated series centered around Jaime Reyes / Blue Beetle is in the works. While the project is not yet officially confirmed by DC Studios, reports are indicating that the series will continue the events of 2023's Blue Beetle movie, with Jaime actor Xolo Maridueña and the film's cast in talks to reprise their roles. It has already been confirmed that the events of Blue Beetle will carry over into James Gunn and Peter Safran's "reset" DC Universe of canon, which begs an interesting question regarding this animated follow-up.

Could the Blue Beetle animated series finally play off of the film's Easter eggs and introduce DC's two previous Blue Beetles, Ted Kord and Dan Garrett?

Who Are Ted Kord and Dan Garrett?

Originally created by Charles Nicholas Wojtkoski, Dan Garret made his debut in Fox Comics' Mystery Men Comics #1 in 1939. At the time, he was characterized as a rogue patrolman who fought crime on his own, with the help of a blue bulletproof suit and a beetle-shaped calling card. He became a popular pulp hero, also appearing in comic strips and even a radio serial. During the Silver Age of Comics, a newer version of Dan was published by Charlton Comics, with his name changed to Dan Garrett and his origin story reimagined. (The original Fox version of "Dan Garret" later entered the public domain, and was published with the superhero name Big Blue.) Charlton's version of Dan Garrett was established to be an archaeologist who gained powers from the Scarab. He has sporadically been resurrected and alluded to in DC's comics, largely in relation to Ted Kord.

Created by Steve Ditko in a backup feature of 1966's Captain Atom #83, Ted Kord carried a lot of the spirit and status quo of Fox's Dan Garret, fighting crime with a string of bug-shaped weapons (including a bug-themed ship, which could be seen in the Blue Beetle trailer). When DC acquired Charlton's heroes in the mid-1980s, Ted was subsequently integrated into the main DC Universe, getting his own solo series in the late 80s. He subsequently joined the Justice League International, becoming one of the team's most prolific members, and the best friend of fellow superhero Booster Gold. In more recent years, Ted became a friend and ally to the Birds of Prey. In Countdown to Infinite Crisis, Ted was brutally murdered by Maxwell Lord, and spent his final moments wondering if and how he would have a successor. He later was resurrected in the events of Brightest Day, but appeared sporadically up until the DC Rebirth reboot.

(Photo: DC)

Will the Blue Beetle Animated Series Introduce Ted Kord and Dan Garrett?

The Blue Beetle film already included a bit of the built-in legacy of the titular mantle, with the film's opening credits sequence being a smattering of newspaper clippings and in-universe bulletins about their adventures, and their comic-accurate costumes on full display. The absence of Ted, in particular, looms large over Blue Beetle, as the film sees Jaime put in the middle of the fight between his sister Victoria Kord (Susan Sarandon) and his daughter Jenny Kord (Bruna Marquenzie) to control the future of his company, Kord Industries. For most of the events of Blue Beetle, Ted is believed to be presumed dead, and is only shown in an abstract painting of the Kord family (looking an awful lot like Jason Sudeikis, who was a popular fancast for the role). In the film's post-credits scene, a choppy video message on a monitor confirms that Ted is alive — but no one is around to hear it.

At very least, it seems reasonable to assume that the Blue Beetle animated series might follow up on this search for Ted, especially given Jenny's connection to him. The question of whether or not the Blue Beetle animated series might introduce Ted is something else entirely, and depends on when the project comes out in relation to to DC's already-announced Booster Gold show. After all, Ted and Michael Carter / Booster Gold have a distinct relationship in the source material, and many have theorized that he will make even a cameo appearance in Booster's long-awaited solo show.

With animation now at play with Blue Beetle, it's not entirely impossible to imagine the onscreen introduction of Dan Garrett as well. Time travel or even a well-time flashback sequence could give us a better look at Dan and his Golden Age status quo, without worrying about the budgetary constraints of doing it in live-action. And with Gunn and Safran already confirming that DCU characters will reprise their roles across both live-action and animation, the theoretical casting of Dan could keep the character in their back pocket, if a Golden Age story is eventually told in live-action.