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For other versions of Silk Spectre I, see Silk Spectre (disambiguation).

Sally Juspeczyk was the first Silk Spectre and founding member of the Minutemen.

Biography

Early life

Family Tragedy

Sally Juspeczyk was born on August 3rd, 1920 in Skokie, Illinois. Her father was an insurance salesman. When Sally was eleven years old, her older sister, Linda, died in a car accident. This incident devastated her and the family, and as a result, their relationship was permanently damaged.[1]

Escaping to New York

When she was sixteen years old, Sally ran away from home and heads to New York City, never returning to her parents, though she does maintain contact with her sister Bella. Sally found the experience liberating, but worried about ending up dead in an alley

Despite her young age, Sally managed to survive life alone in the city for three years by taking jobs as a waitress and a burlesque dancer.[1] Despite several prostitution opportunities, she avoided having to sell her body.[2]

Meeting Larry Schexnayder

While dancing at Stage Left, Sally met Larry Schexnayder, a former Hollywood press agent. Too naïve to perceive him as creepy for hanging out at clubs with younger women, she hired Schexnayder as her agent. He gave her money and a home, which she found attractive.[1]

Becoming Silk Spectre

In 1938, after reading about Hooded Justice, Sally decided to become the first female costumed adventurer, in the hopes that the publicity will launch her modeling career, and possibly pave the way to Hollywood films. She even changed her surname to "Jupiter" to hide her Polish heritage. Larry Schexnayder helped Sally launch her costumed adventuring career, recognizing that a female superhero could attract great media attention if properly handled, which would help foster her celebrity status.

In December 1938, Sally, now going by Silk Spectre, made her crimefighting debut. Unknown to the public, Schexnayder staged the criminal case using an actor to attract the attention of the press. The police were also in on the trick.[1] Schexnayder would continue to hire numerous actors and professional wrestlers to portray criminals so Sally could foil their "crimes" before conveniently placed cameras until she can learn how to take care of herself and fight crime for real.[3]

As Silk Spectre's reputation grew, she was seen as a sex symbol whom villains and criminals didn't really mind getting caught by. She had apprehended a criminal named Claude Boke after attempting to rob a liquor store. Upon his arrest, Boke mentioned that he preferred to be beaten by her than two old fat cops. The magazine Daily World had an article about her shortly before the founding of the Minutemen.[4][2]

Minutemen

Captain Metropolis sent a letter to Larry with an invitation to join the Minutemen, a group of costumed heroes. Although at first, Sally thought it was a ridiculous idea, Larry thought it would be a good move P.R.-wise.[2]

More celebrity than a vigilante, Silk Spectre provided a cover for Hooded Justice's homosexuality by being his glamorous girlfriend and started going out with him after their Christmas party.[5]

On October 2nd, 1940, after a meeting of the Minutemen, she was sexually assaulted by Edward Blake, alias the Comedian. He was stopped by fellow Minuteman Hooded Justice, who posed as her boyfriend, and gave him a vicious beating.[6] The event would have a profound impact on Sally's life; her agent, Larry, persuaded her not to press charges against the Comedian for fear of damaging the group's image.[7] In retrospect, she thought that she also contributed to this event.[2]

In an interview, she admitted that she didn't really like The Silhouette, a.k.a. Ursula Zandt, who was pestering her about her Polish heritage.[2] When Zandt's lesbianism was outed by the press, and Sally voted her out, feeling happy she left. In retrospect she thought it was unjust, as she wasn't the only homosexual in the group.[2]

Sometime around 1948[8] Larry sent her a note expressing his concerns about the decline of the Minutemen, CM and HJ's relationship that comes out to the public, the drinking problems of Mothman, and Nite Owl becoming like "a big bouncy boy scout"; and his wish to quit the team and cooperate together - essentially, a marriage proposal.[2]

Ursula was soon murdered by the Liquidator and Sally held themselves responsible. Sally, having her own source, proceeded alone to his hideout. She killed him and disposed of his body in the bathtub. She waited for C.M. and H.J. and after scolding for their hypocrisy (both of them being homosexuals and still voting Silhouette out), she announced her wish to quit.[9]

After Ursula's funeral, Sally visited her grave and confessed her hatred for her, her guilt and what she did to the Liquidator, as she felt she owed it to Ursula. There she met with the Comedian who had returned from the war a bit changed. He narrated his experiences and explained that he had to forgive himself.[9]

Retirement

Having retired from crime-fighting Sally married (or rather "partnering up" with) her agent, Schexnayder,[7] while keeping in touch with Hollis Mason, Byron Lewis and Nelson Gardner. Most importantly she kept in touch with Blake, and shortly after the ceremony they were copulating in the restroom.[10]

In 1949 she gave birth to her daughter Laurel Jane, commonly known as Laurie.[7] It was known to both parents that Laurie was not Laurence's child, but the Comedian's, and this led to conflict in the family, and divorce in 1956.[11] While not explicitly stated, it is implied that Sally's second sexual encounter with the Comedian was consensual, and that, despite it all, she did have feelings for him.

As for Laurie, she came to accept that her mother's incomprehensible affair with her would-be rapist is something she could never understand, but it's something too complicated to condemn her mother about. Her deep devotion to her flawed mother is exemplified by Laurie's insistence on using their real surname of Juspeczyk and not the assumed Jupiter.[12]

In 1960, with the arrival of Doctor Manhattan considered the birth of the real super-hero, Sally and other former adventurers were asked their opinion. Sally expressed skepticism about his abilities and wished to see herself.[13]

By 1962 Sally was living in a Los Angeles villa with her daughter where Hollis would pay them a visit. Concerning the book he was writing, Nelson Gardner called Sally Jupiter at nights "crying his heart out". When Hollis came to discuss the book Sally scolded Hollis, and how she appeared vain and shallow in her youth.[10]

When Laurie was 13 years old, she invited her old friends, Nelson, Hollis and Byron home. She was angry at Hollis who asked Laurie if she had read the book and said that her daughter was too young for it and Hollis held an apologetic stance. They were joined by Byron who took a leave from the institute and seeing his condition, Laurie asked if this is her future as well.[2]

Events of Watchmen

After her retirement, was able to move to an upscale retirement community in California, Nepenthe Gardens, and maintain an upper-class lifestyle.[12] She read about the Comedian's death. She was visited by her daughter who did not wish to attend the funeral.[6]

When the news mentioned that two mysterious costumed adventurers rescued tenants from a building fire, Hollis Mason called her after many years. That moment a woman of Acme Manicure tended her nails. Her prosperity is shown in contrast to Hollis Mason's working-class circumstances in a phone conversation between them.[14]

Legacy

She was said to have been an action heroine version of a pin-up girl and, even in her old age, she seemed proud of her sex symbol status, apparently enjoying male attention as indicated by her career as a dancer. However, she seems to have some serious self-esteem issues related to this quirk, considering that she felt responsible for the Comedian assaulting her and she was pleased to learn that a Tijuana bible that was based on her, despite her daughter's disapproval of it for being highly demeaning.

During her entry to the Minutemen, Mason noted that her lifestyle (drinking, swearing and mode of dress) would embarrass polite and reserved Captain Metropolis.[7] Of all the original Minutemen members, Sally was undoubtedly the most financially savvy. She stated in the Probe interview that her venture as a costumed heroine was motivated almost entirely by money, and she saw the entire act as merely a stepping stone to a lucrative career as a film star, and starred in Silk Swingers of Suburbia.[2] Although her hoped-for Hollywood career never materialized, she accumulated enough money from modeling to purchase a luxurious house.

Laurie did not forgive her mother for wanting her become her "heir" of sorts. Sally convinced her to exercise so that she would mature and take her place, but Laurie was reluctant to take up this career and used to bitch about it.[2] Eventually, she saw the Keene Act as a redemption, but still considered her 10 years with the Crimebusters to be lost years.

Rorschach did not think much about her and called her a "whore dying in a California rest resort". The reason for this would be because of her sex-symbol status, and Rorschach was anti-sexual. Also, he didn't approve of her accusing the Comedian, whom he considered a patriot; he just called the rape a "moral lapse". He didn't think much about her daughter, Laurie.[12]

Trivia

  • Sally is noted to be one of the most beautiful women in the world. She has medium length auburn hair that is normally pinned up in front, blue eyes, fair skin, long legs, and the big bap.
  • Her measurements were 36-24-36.[2]

References

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