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Department of Extranormal Operations

The Department of Extranormal Operations (DEO) is a government agency in the DC Universe appearing in American comic books published by DC Comics. It was co-created by Dan Curtis Johnson and J. H. Williams III and first appeared in Batman #550 (1998). The agency was the focus of the Chase series. It is featured in the Supergirl television series.

Department of Extranormal Operations
Publication information
PublisherDC Comics
First appearanceBatman #550 (1998)
Created byDan Curtis Johnson and J. H. Williams III
In-story information
Type of organizationFederal Law Enforcement Agency

Fictional organization historyEdit

The role of the DEO is to monitor those with extranormal superpowers and to prevent any threat to the general public.[citation needed] However, in Action Comics #775 there are a couple of rogue agents[original research?] being defeated by Superman. Manchester Black, the leader of The Elite, suggests they are responsible for the creation of fellow team member Menagerie, saying that "These guys run a triple black alien immigration service that takes the galaxies' cast-offs an' turns them into weapons for the highest bidder. The West Nile glop in New York is one of theirs from the Microbio Division."[citation needed]

The DEO was responsible for the "orphanage" seen in Young Justice, in which Secret was kept,[citation needed] although a later conversation between Director Bones and Agent Chase suggested the conditions in which she was kept were not official policy.[citation needed] Another such orphanage was seen in the 1999 Titans series.[citation needed]

The DEO has protected important aspects of Washington D. C. from telepathic intrusion.[3]

A rogue department of the DEO manages to convince Green Lantern to scan various heroes presumably to detect a body-hopping super villain. Instead, the data is used to create a new version of Amazo. Chase, Mr. Bones, Green Lantern and other heroes shut down the division. Amazo is destroyed and Green Lantern deletes the relevant information.[4]

Batwoman becomes a reluctant agent of the DEO after the agency learns her identity. Mister Bones, director of the DEO, believes himself to be the illegitimate son of Col. Jacob Kane, Batwoman's father.[5][6] DEO agents discover that Beth Kane, Batwoman's identical twin sister, is alive and capture her. Bones blackmails Batwoman into helping the DEO uncover the secret identity of Batman in exchange for Beth.[7] Batwoman and her allies are unable to rescue Beth, and Bones attempts to kill her. Agent Asaf, suborned by Batwoman, shoots Bones in the head and frees Beth. Asaf then claims that Bones was mentally unbalanced. (Bones is brain-damaged but survives.)[6]


Executive directors

Other intelligence agenciesEdit

In other mediaEdit


In the 2011 film Green Lantern, the DEO appears as an agency under the secret support of Sen. Robert Hammond. His son Dr. Hector Hammond is given the assignment of doing the autopsy of Abin Sur. One of the main heads is Dr. Amanda Waller.



  • In the 2015 CBS/CW television series Supergirl, the Department of Extra-Normal Operations employs Kara Zor-El's adoptive sister Alex Danvers as a scientist and operative. This iteration of the agency is led by former CIA agent Hank Henshaw (later revealed to be J'onn J'onzz in disguise after the real Hank Henshaw was presumably killed while on assignment). Thanks to J'onn, the DEO now is less prejudiced against non-humans and focused on battling rogue extraterrestrials in addition to occasional criminal, metahuman and terrorist threats. It is learned in season two that Superman was a member of the team. Through Supergirl's alignment with superheroes from a parallel Earth (Earth-1), the DEO is aligned with S.T.A.R. Labs and accessing their technology for dealing with their own metahuman and parallel universal threats. In Season 4, Alex has been named as the new director of the DEO from J'onn.
  • At the end of the four-part crossover between Supergirl, The Flash, Arrow and Legends of Tomorrow, titled "Invasion!", Kara speaks with the succeeding President of the U.S. of the Earth-1 universe Susan Brayden; she informs the new chief executive that the United States government on her universe (Earth-38) founded the DEO for monitoring and countering extraterrestrial threats, and the president agrees that her administration would establish their own agency in response to the Dominators' attacks.

Video gamesEdit

The DEO had a brief appearance in the intro level to Batman: Arkham Origins Blackgate, where they acted as adversaries to both Batman and Catwoman, the former due to mistaken association with the latter, and the latter due to stealing classified data.


  1. ^ Detective Comics #763
  2. ^ Superman #681
  3. ^ JLA #19 (June 1998)
  4. ^ DC Secrets and Origins 2000
  5. ^ Batwoman Vol. 2 #17 (April 2013); Batwoman Vol. 2 #19 (June 2013).
  6. ^ a b Batwoman Annual #1 (June 2014).
  7. ^ Batwoman Vol. 2 #20 (July 2013).
  8. ^ Detective Comics #763
  9. ^ Superman #681

External linksEdit

  • Smith, Zack (November 3, 2006). "Chasing The Past: Looking Back on "Chase" with Johnson". Comic Book Resources.