As powerful as a jumbo jet and as swift as a military fighter plane, Supersonic battled America's enemies for nearly a quarter of a century (1958-1982), tackling mobsters, enemy agents, aliens and more, on Earth and beyond. He retired in the early 1980s, but reluctantly donned his costume once again (2004) to save Astro City from a rampaging robot.
Dale Enright was an engineer working for Hillman Holdaway Aircraft in Phoenix, Arizona when a wind tunnel accident involving experimental turbines imbued him with superpowers. Calling himself Supersonic and adopting a jet motif, he became a crimefighter who enjoyed a long and storied career. He fought a wide range of super-powered criminals, including the Red Dahlia, the Kirlian Man, and Mr. Teleport; and confronted the Radium Ants, the Ogliarchons, and other threats. Rather than simply rely on his superpowers, Supersonic used his analytical mind and engineering knowledge to outwit nearly all of his opponents. He faced enemies all over the globe, often defended Phoenix and Astro City, ventured into space, and even traveled through time on at least one occasion. He even died once, beaten to death by Lady Lethal, but that proved temporary.
While living in Arizona, Enright formed friendships with a young woman named Caroleen and local police lieutenant Ed Robbins. Enright hid his dual identity as Supersonic from his friends, even after his relationship with Caroleen became romantic. The observant Robbins did eventually discover Enright’s secret, but kept this information to himself for decades.
Over the years, Enright’s mental agility began to wane, either due to age, some sort of power change, or perhaps simply “one too many knocks to the head.” The plans and wild ideas he employed to defeat his foes no longer came to him so easily. Realizing that his physical and mental prowess had diminished, Enright retired from superheroics. Caroleen and Dale (now married, his identity known to her) settled down in Phoenix, where they lived together until Caroleen died from a terminal illness.
After Caroleen’s death, Dale relocated to Astro City, hoping that in a city with so many superheroes, he would never be required to put on his costume again. However, he was coaxed out of retirement by Ed Robbins to combat one of Ominuss’ rampaging robots in the Hartley neighborhood, at a time when all of the city's other superheroes happened to be unavailable. Supersonic managed to defeat the robot through brute force and sheer will, but returned to retirement immediately afterward.
Dale Enright spends his retirement focused on gardening and other domestic activities.
Enright’s fateful turbine accident gave him several superpowers, including: Supersonic Flight: As his super-heroic name suggests, Enright is able to fly at extremely high speeds, attaining even supersonic velocities. He has used his incredible speed to produce a variety of effects, such as generating a “super-cyclone.” Superhuman Strength: In his prime, Supersonic once pushed Pluto back into its orbit. During his most recent exploit, he was capable of battering through a giant robot with his fists. Increased Durability: Supersonic can endure incredible physical punishment and appears resistant to fire. Regeneration: In 1966, Lady Lethal killed Supersonic, who suffered massive blood loss and extensive organ damage. Although clinically dead, Enright recovered while on the autopsy table. Whether his powers were solely responsible or, as in the case of many deaths in superhero comics, there were special circumstances involved is unclear. Enhanced Senses: Supersonic can receive and hear radio and CB transmissions.
Abilities: In his prime, Enright was an incredibly creative tactician, able to concoct imaginative strategies to defeat his enemies. He is also a trained engineer and a hobbyist gardener.
Strength level: The extent of Supersonic's current strength is unknown, but he has been observed lifting objects weighing several tons.
A handful of other abilities have been attributed to Supersonic, but their origins are unknown:
Time Travel: Enright mentions traveling back in time to defeat the Kirlian Man, but it’s unclear whether this was accomplished through creative use of his supersonic speed (such as vibrating at the correct speed or flying fast enough to break some sort of “time barrier”), a device he built or borrowed, or some other innate undocumented power. Bulletproof: Bullets have been observed bouncing harmlessly off of Supersonic’s chest. It’s possible that Supersonic’s costume is bulletproof, but it’s more likely that he is simply very durable or this power is another application of his supersonic speed (perhaps vibrating at a frequency capable of repelling bullets)
Did Supersonic help out in the defense of Astro City during Madame Majestrix's Invasion? (in Astro City: The Dark Age Book One #4 - the double page battle scene on pages 10 and 11),
Based on the year(1959) and the sharp angle of the turn, Supersonic is also the likeliest candidate for the flying figure seen on the title page in Kurt Busiek's Astro City Vol. 1 #2.