Word Geek Wednesdays: Cadre

 Welcome to Word Geek Wednesday, where we explore words in the context of pop culture! Our word today is...

ca·dre /ˈkä-drē/ n. a small group of people specially trained for a particular purpose or profession

This is the perfect word when you want your group of highly trained professionals sound cool and mysterious. Robert O'Riordan's Cadre book series features one such group, the eponymous Cadre, said to be the most cold-blooded law enforcement unit in the known universe.

But there's also a second definition, one that tends to be leaned on more:

ca·dre /ˈkä-drē/ n. a group of activists in a communist or other revolutionary organization

Now that sounds even more menacing, which makes it a badass callsign for a team of ne'er-do-wells in places like comic books. In an interesting coincidence, the Big 2 (Marvel Comics and DC Comics) each have their own teams called "Cadre"!

DC's Cadre is a group of supervillains introduced in 1985 in the pages of Justice League of America #235. This oddball team of Black Mass, Shatterfist, Crowbar, Fastball, Nightfall, and Shrike fought the members of the Justice League at the behest of their leader, the nigh immortal Overmaster.

Their funky powers (one is literally just a superpowered baseball pitcher) were no match for the JLA, and they basically retired to the island of irrelevance, with one of their last cameos being a beatdown by Superman and Batman in the Justice League Unlimited animated series.

Marvel's Cadre, on the other hand, first appeared in the pages of Web of Spider-Man Annual #9 in 1993. Composed of siblings Vortex, Dementia, and Shard, this Cadre were the spawn of the Nephilim-like Hellbent and used their powers to tussle with Spider-Man and Moon Knight.

Now let's see you use this in everyday conversation! Have a word you would like me to check out? Leave them in the comments below!

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