Character Appearances

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Universal Rules

  • Optional
  • This field records the appearance of any characters in the story who the indexer thinks are worth indexing, along with brief notes about them.
  • Characters should be separated with a semi-colon (;).
  • Many of the more specific rules regarding how to record information in this field are superhero-centric and do not apply to most other genres.
  • Square brackets should be used for aliases, secret identities and "also-known-as" information which clarify which character if it's ambiguous ("Flash [Barry Allen]" and "Flash [Jay Garrick]"). This also includes characters who assume more than one identity during a story, such as Batman [Bruce Wayne; also as Blair Graeme]. Roman numerals ("Flash I" and "Flash II") should not be used.
  • For characters that have changed over time due to re-boots or changes or multiple realities, the general rule is to index them as they are described in the comic at the time it was published. For instance Superman in Action #1 (1938) is indexed simply as Superman not Superman (Earth-2). If it is obvious from context or explicitly stated that the character is from another earth, this information can be included in parentheses. There is also information about how to index characters from multiple earths or timelines at Indexing Variant Characters.
  • The older form where different versions of a character were numbered - Wildcat II - is not allowed and should be corrected to the named form - Wildcat [Yolanda Montez]

Standard Format for Groups and Notes

  • Parentheses (round brackets) should be used for notes about the character's role in the story: "Superman (origin)". Common notes about character roles are origin, introduction, death, cameo, and villain. Multiple notes should be separated with a comma: "Superman (introduction, origin)". Abbreviations, such as O for Origin, should not be used.
  • Parentheses (round brackets) should also be used to identify the name of an actor or model portraying a character in a photo. The words "photo of" should be used within the parentheses to clarify the relationship ("Superman (photo of George Reeves)").
  • Square brackets are also also used to show members of a group. The groups name is listed, then an open square bracket, then the characters, then a close square bracket. Note that many comics currently in the database (including those from Norway) do not follow this convention but use round parentheses instead. Unless an indexer has specifically been told by the Senior Editors that they can use parentheses, square brackets must be used.

Rules Regarding Photographed Characters

  • If both the character and the photographed subject/actor/model portraying the character are known, then enter:
  • If the character is known but the photographed subject/actor/model portraying the character is NOT known, then enter:
  • If the photographed subject/actor/model portaying the character is known but the character is NOT known, then enter:
 ? (photo of SUBJECT)
  • If the photographed subject/actor/model IS the character, then enter:
  • If neither the character nor the photographed subject/actor/model portraying the character are know, then do not enter anything.
Photographed Characters


* Sam Zabel; Mr. Lupicinus; Cynthia; Moxie; Toxie; Tisco
* Jimmy Olsen 
* Jimmy Olsen (origin, death) 
* Red Tornado [Ma Hunkel] (cameo) 
* Green Lantern [Hal Jordan]; Green Lantern [Alan Scott] (cameo)
* Batman (photo of Adam West)
* Batman [Bruce Wayne] (of Earth-2)

Standard Form

* Justice League of America [Green Lantern [Hal Jordan] (origin); Superman [Clark Kent] (Earth-1)];
* Justice Society of America [Superman [Clark Kent] (Earth-2); Flash [Jay Garrick] (cameo)]

Alternate Form

* X-Men--Jean Grey; Rogue; Beast; Nightcrawler; Kitty Pryde; GUESTS: Nick Fury; SHIELD;
* Agent Daisy Caruthers [Dugan]; VILLAINS: Sentinels; Zigfried Trask; CAMEOS: The Consortium;
* CAMEO FLASHBACK: Dietrich Trask; Wolverine; Cyclops; Iceman; Angel; Storm; Gambit

Photographed Character

* Photograph of Adam West portraying Batman: Batman (photo of Adam West)
* Photograph of Tarzan portrayed by an unknown model: Tarzan
* Photograph of Joy Lansing portraying an unknown character: ? (photo of Joy Lansing)
* Photograph of Roy Rogers: Roy Rogers (photo)


  • Links to external sites pre-approved by the Board or by Policy List vote will be allowed in the future. In order to add such a link, an indexer must select a link source from a dropdown menu populated with the list of pre-approved sources, and the link they enter must point to a page on the selected source that is directly related to the GCD record it is being appended to. The pre-approved sources should be well-established, actively maintained sites that provide information that supplements (not merely repeats) information in our own indexes. Examples include Wikipedia, the Internet Movie Database, or the Digital Comics Museum. Wikipedia links, if used, shall be the first entry in the pre-approved source list.

(end of definition)

Policy Votes Affecting This Topic - 2018-09-27 - 2019-04-03

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