TW Villain: The Infernal Empress Picture

Before one looks at the present character, one must understand the cosmology of Samantha West's world, of her universe and the realities beyond it.

Put simply, all of reality is composed of three "layers" to it. Beyond reality sits absolute nothingness, where the only things that "exist" in that infinite nonexistence are creatures that gnaw at the fringes of reality, parasitically absorbing reality itself to sustain their existence, primordial cosmic leeches and forces of pure consumption and corruption. On top of all reality, forming its surface and insulating the realities and universes below it is the plane of existence known as the Aetheral Realms. These are the realms of the gods, the pantheons and mythologies that humanity has come to know, higher beings and primordial elemental personifications. The Olympians are but one of many numerous such pantheons that reside in this plane of reality. Below the Aetheral Realms are the Middle Realms, the countless nigh-infitinte permutations of the universe and space-time. This is where every other reality and alternate reality exist, where time flows in a continuous loop and cycle, neverending. And below even this reality, sitting at the center of all existence, a hub through which every reality and alternate reality flows and connects to, that binds and unites all existence, are the Infernal Realms. These are the hells and underworlds of all mythologies and folklores, combined together in a single vast dimensional plane.

The Middle Realms have no governance. It exists ungoverened, the pantheons merely fiddling with it. The Aetheral Realms are governed by a council of skyfathers, the definitive rulers of each pantheon. But the Infernal Realms are unique, as they have only one ruler. Though each of the various underworlds and hells have their own rulers associated with them, all these dark gods and devils acknowledge one above them all, one who rules over them and the entirety of the Infernal Realms, one who has no direct equivalent in any mythology or pantheonic folklore in the Middle Realms. One who is simply call "Empress."

The Infernal Empress is old, more ancient than even the pantheons themselves. Only she knows how she came to be, and she is one of thew beings old enough to know the secrets of creation itself, of the ancient history of reality that was before the gods and titans came into being. She is more powerful than any single skyfather, and a match for the entire collective of skyfathers that govern the Aetheral Realms. And at her disposal are countless infamous demons, devils, and dark gods: Satan, Surtur, Ahriman, Beelzebub, Hel, Hades, Yomi, Mephistopheles, and so on and so forth.

And yet, one thing must be clear: the Infernal Empress is not evil, or even that bad strictly speaking. Though she takes the role of antagonist to Thunder Woman and her allies, the Infernal Empress does not do so because of hatred, petty vengeance, nihilism, or wanton thirst for destruction. She does so simply because. She has no reason to justify why she does what she does, no reason to reduce herself down to some insignificant human motivation or understanding. At best, its all just a game to her. Life and time are a cycle of events, and she is but one of the catalysts for these events and changes. By being who she is, she maintains and supports reality itself.

Such a powerful and titanic entity has been a frequent adversary for Thunder Woman. She is beyond Samantha's ability to directly fight, as even Zeus is vastly underpowered in contrast to the Empress. So Samantha has found that she must play along to the games and schemes of the Empress; that is the key to winning. So far, Thunder Woman has had a winning track record against the Empress, unheard of even by the skyfathers. This is why the Infernal Empress continues to remain interested in Samantha West and her adventures, always behind the scenes manipulating events as part of her vast and incomprehensible game with the superheroine.


The Infernal Empress, Thunder Woman, and related characters are (c)