Bulletman was originally a character from Fawcett comics. When DC acquired the Fawcett characters, Bulletman and Bulletgirl were among them. He was incorporated to the pre-crisis universe of earth-S and later became one of the golden age heroes from the main universe, but always keeping an strong connection to Captain Marvel, also originally a Fawcett property. The character Bulleteer is based in Bulletman.
Young Jim Barr became an orphan when his father, police Sergeant Pat Barr, is murdered by gangsters. Jim vows to devote his life to eliminating crime from that moment on. Unable to pass the police physical because of his inadequate physique, Jim stays true to his vow by becoming a police forensic scientist and ballistic expert, the later earning him the nickname “Bullet”.
Jim tried to develop a serum to eradicate criminal intentions within a person, a “crime cure” as he explains it. He tried the serum on himself first and discovers his muscle mass and brain power have both increased. Jim next invented a gravity regulator helmet (which was shaped like a bullet) that enables him to fly and deflect bullets. He took his discoveries and fashioned a costume to become the crime fighting Bulletman.
Jim’s lab assist, Susan Kent, was the daughter of a police officer he often worked with and the two became involved. As his girlfriend, Susan discovered Jim’s alter ego as Bulletman and wanted to share in his cause. He makes another gravity regulator helmet for her, which enables her to become his partner Bulletgirl. As Bulletman and Bulletgirl the two made a formidable fighting team and were often known as the “Flying Detectives”. The two would go on to fight such villains as the Black Rodent, the Black Spider, Dr. Riddle and the common gang of Nazi saboteurs. The duo would eventually add Bulletboy and Bulletdog (their pet) to the Bullet Family.
As Bulletman, Jim was a founding member of the Crime Crusader Club along with Bulletgirl, Minute Man and Captain Marvel Jr.
Before Crisis on Infinite Earths, Bulletman and Bulletgirl lived on Earth-S in the DC Universe along with the other Fawcett heroes. During this time Bulletman was part of the Squadron of Justice (along with Bulletgirl, Spy Smasher, Ibis, Mr. Scarlet and Pinky), which would meet the Justice League of America (Earth-1) and the Justice Society of America (Earth-2) in what was called a “Crisis on Multiple Earths". The three teams fought King Kull and villains from all three Earths.
In Post-COIE, Jim Barr continued to be one of the Mystery Men of World War II along with his girlfriend Susan Kent. Jim was among a small group of heroes of the 1940s called upon by the wizard Shazam to aid in his fight against his daughter Blaze and the Seven Deadly Enemies of Man. Blaze was defeated and Shazam contained the Seven within ridiculous containment shells. It is yet to be mentioned if Bulletman was a part of the All Star Squadron during WW II or part of another team (Crime Crusader Club) combining all former Fawcett heroes.
After a long absence, Jim would turn up in Fawcett City, older, but with some celebrity status surrounding him. He would appear on Whiz Radio with fellow heroes, Alan Armstrong and Jack Weston. The three talked about a battle with Captain Nazi towards the end of World War II. When Shazam was held captive in hell, an aged Bulletman helped Ibis and the Marvel Family recapture the Seven Sins let loose by Blaze. They would be equally successful in freeing Shazam as well.
It’s revealed that his wife, Susan Kent Barr, has passed away some years ago, but the two had a daughter, Deanna Barr. Deanna, now a grown woman and airforce test pilot, had disappeared along with a secret jet. Jim asked Captain Marvel for help in finding her and clearing the accusations surrounding her. Captain Marvel located Deanna flying the secret jet and attempting to sell it. His interference almost ruined Deanna’s true plan of identifying traitors within the Air Force. The two begin to date after this, much to her father’s disapproval. Jim’s displeasure goes as far as hiring thugs to kidnap Captain Marvel (as Billy Batson). By the power of Shazam and the appearance of Gangbuster, Batson is rescued and discovered the length of Jim’s sordid involvement.
Old newsreel footage of the 1940s turned up implicating Bulletman conspiring with Nazis in sinking the Normandie ocean liner in . However, Jim was actually on a secret assignment in with the golden age Starman (Ted Knight) when the Normandie had sunk. Jim goes on the run and heads to see Ted Knight. Sarge Steel enlisted Captain Marvel to bring Jim Barr into custody. The current Starman at the time, Jack Knight, would battle Captain Marvel in in order to prevent him from arresting Jim.
Jim next sought out Jack Weston ( Minute Man), who issued the assignment in , in hopes he would be released from his signed oath of secrecy. This would enable him to reveal details of his secret mission in order to establish his alibi. However, Jack was shot by Neo-Nazis while attending Captain Nazi’s trial in , thus preventing Jim from saying anything. At a news conference in for Jim, a elderly man named Edouard Laslo (a shape-shifter) revealed himself as the one impersonating Bulletman in the fake newsreel footage. The conspiracy was revealed to be the work of Wolf Krieger, the brother of Captain Nazi. Jim was cleared of all charges.
Skills and Abilities
Due to the experimental "crime cure" serum that Jim ingested, he gained super-strength and increased mental intelligence. Jim possesses some amount of invulnerability due his increased strength, which protects him when he crashes through buildings and flies at great speeds. It is unknown if these abilities have decreased with age.
Gravity Regulator Helmet
Flight – The helmet allows the wearer to defy gravity and directional maneuverability even at sonic speeds.
Deflection – An invisible electromagnetic field emitted from the helmet repels approaching objects (such as bullets) from striking the wearer.
In Batman: The Brave and the Bold, a flashback in the 1940's shows Bulletman fighting the Weeper in order to stop him from activating a machine that made people cry. Weeper was telling his story about how he got defeated in a battle with Bulletman to the Joker.