In March 1941, Weisinger moved from Standard Magazines to National Periodicals primarily as editor of the Supermanand Batman titles. Among his earliest jobs, however, was the task of “dream[ing] up some new characters” - these resulted in the line-up of More Fun Comics #73, and took the form of Aquaman, Green Arrow and Johnny Quick. Weisinger returned to his job at National after his discharge from military service in 1946, and resumed his editorship of the Superman comics, the Batman titles and others. His tenure was marked by the introduction of a variety of new concepts and supporting characters, including Supergirl, Krypto the Super Dog, the Phantom Zone, the bottle city of Kandor, the Legion of Super-Heroes, and a variety of types of kryptonite. Pitted against Superman’s wits was Lois Lane, and under Weisinger’s editorship stories in which she sought to prove that Superman was Clark Kent abounded. Weisinger “enjoyed surprising the readers,” and to that end introduced a number of “live personalities… real people” into the comics, including Candid Camera’s Alan Funt, This is Your Life’s Ralph Edwards, Steve Allen, Ann Blyth and Pat Boone among others. Weisinger was particularly “proud of having dreamed up the "imaginary story” gimmick to motivate otherwise impossible stories,“ and for "having conceived the idea of DC’s first giant anthology - The Superman Annual.” Weisinger lived for much of his life in Great Neck, New York, and stayed there until his death from a heart attack on May 7, 1978. He was posthumously named as one of the honorees by DC Comics in the company’s 50th anniversary publication Fifty Who Made DC Great.
One of the most grim Superman stories, written by Edmond Hamilton (co-creator of the original Starman), takes place in Action Comics vol.1 No.300. Trapped in the distant future by the Superman Revenge Squad, Superman is left powerless by Earth’s bloated, aged, now-red sun. His one hope for salvation lies in the Fortress of Solitude, accessible only by a veritable death march across a dried-up ocean bed populated by strange and deadly creatures.
The story goes a long way towards establishing – as do many stories in 1963 – Superman’s resourcefulness and toughness, qualities left uncelebrated as long as he possesses his tremendous powers. This must have been an engaging read for fans who had become accustomed to Superman juggling suns for amusement.
Famously, Superman Under The Red Sun contains a massive continuity error which was repaired in later reprintings: Finding his Fortress abandoned and the Bottle City of Kandor – whose science he hoped to use to return to the modern day – presumably relocated and enlarged, he uses Red Kryptonite to shrink himself sufficiently to use a left-behind Kandorian rocketship to break the time barrier. As many readers pointed out, Kryptonite only affects super-powered Kryptonians, and Superman was powerless under the red sun of Earth’s distant future…
New trailer for the latest DC Universe Animated Original Movie: Superman Unbound. This film is based on 2008 story arc Superman: Brainiac. Although I am not the biggest fan of the art and coloring right now, I am excited to see Supergirl in another animated feature. I hope she kicks just as much ass as she did in Superman/Batman: Apocalypse. :]
Inarguably the most well-known of the entire catalog of Imaginary Superman Stories, “The Amazing Story of Superman-Red and Superman-Blue” is one of the rare tales which imagines happy endings across the board for everyone. Even Lucy and Jimmy put down their knives and settle down into happy, supportive connubial bliss. (Superman vol.1 No.162)
The ethics of the Supermen’s Anti-Evil Ray were objectionable to me when I first read this story as a kiddewink, and they still don’t hold up. Surely Superman would be a champion of free will. But, then again, perhaps this was the result of a cost/benefit analysis to which I have no particular insight. Also, Luthor got hair.
Please note that the twin-phenomenon is back, with BOTH the Superman/Lois and Superman/Lana pair producing a boy and a girl each. Would they count as cousins or half-siblings, do you think?
For the record, besides finding an antidote for Kryptonite, eliminating crime and evil, restoring Kandor AND rebuilding the planet Krypton, plus marrying their mutual sweethearts, the Supermen also find a new home for the entire race of Atlanteans (who knew they were even looking?).
This sounds like a headcanon, but it isn't. I just want people to know that Nightwing got his name from a story Clark told him about a Kryptonian superhero. I think that's awesome.
Yeah I know! Superman told him about Van-Zee. Van-Zee took up the mantle Nightwing to safeguard the bottle city of Kandor. He fought alongside Ak-Var, a fellow Kandorian, who was known as Flamebird. On several occasions Superman and Jimmy Olsen took up the titles Nightwing and Flamebird, respectively.
But do you know who Van-Zee got his name from? He named himself after the Kryptonian god Nightwing. Let’s see if I remember the legend… The god Vohc-the-builder was tasked with decorating Krypton with magnificent works of art every day by his father Rao. Rao instructed his daughter Flamebird to destroy Vohc’s creations every day to further push his creativity. Rao tasked Nightwing with hunting down and destroying all the evils on Krypton, which hid in the shadows. This prohibited Nightwing from entering the daytime, his entire world was night. For a time, Vohc-the-builder and Flamebird were in love. Vohc-the-builder was thankful that Flamebird constantly spurred him to reimagine his works. Nightwing was isolated from most of the other gods since he was trapped in darkness and the other gods stayed in the light. Vohc-the-builder pitied him. So he created twilight for Nightwing and introduced him to Flamebird. Nightwing and Flamebird fell in love. The next day Vohc-the-builder made a colossal momument of his love for Flamebird. While she appreciated and admired his work she must do her duty and destroy. And so she did. This enraged him and he transformed into Vohc-the-breaker. He became the immortal enemy of Nightwing and Flamebird as well as the rest of the Kryptonian pantheon.
I have this fic idea that could either be really cracky or freaking glorious that’s a crossover between Danny Phantom and Superman.
So it turns out that Maddie has another sister- Lois Lane (because OUAT family tree logic fucked me up for all eternity), and the Fentons are going to visit her. It turns out that Lois and her husband Clark (or Richard or both if you’re an SR fan) have adopted a girl. She spends the first night at a friend’s house, so the Fentons won’t get to meet her until the next day.
That night, the citizens of Kandor attack Earth in a mass invasion, and Zod declares that if anyone from Earth can beat him in one-on-one combat, the Kryptonian forces will back off. Lois, Clark, and Richard go into a frenzy trying to contact their daughter, but she apparently left her friend’s house after the announcement. Danny, meanwhile, is discussing strategy with Jazz because they both understand that in the Bad Future, Dan had to have killed Superman somehow, but Danny promised himself he’d never figure out how he did it.
Things are tense the next day, and the girl is still missing. Lois, Richard, and Clark go into Reporter Mode and learn that their daughter visited Lex Luthor in his prison cell. The three go to interrogate Lex, but he won’t tell them anything except that he knows the girl’s birth father (Vlad, but Lex won’t say it’s him).
While they’re talking with Lex, it turns out that someone has taken up Zod’s challenge: a girl in black and white. The fight moves too fast and is too far away for anyone to get a good shot of them, but finally, Zod’s body crashes to the ground.
Lois, Clark, and Richard have made it back to the Daily Planet by this point, and as the Kandorian ships leave Earth’s atmosphere, a girl in black and white stumbles in. There’s blood all over her and yep, that is definitely a heart in her hand.
Danny recognizes her first. “Danielle?” he asks, confused and astonished as to why she would be there, not to mention why she would choose a room full of reporters to go to after fighting an alien.
Danielle looks at Danny for a moment, confused as to why he’s there, before she passes out and transforms back to her human self. Lois, Richard, and Clark all run up to her, fussing over their daughter and how the hell did she get superpowers is this a new thing?
As it turns out, she went to Lex knowing he knew Vlad and asked for advice because she doesn’t exactly come up with ways to kill people in her spare time. Good ending: he told her to reach into Zod’s chest and rip his heart out. Angst ending: he told her she would need kryptonite to do this, and Danielle, not knowing one of her dads is Kryptonian, intangibly put a piece of kryptonite in her body and can’t get it out, so she can never be around Clark again.
Also, I imagine interactions between Dani and Lex being very tense, because he knows she’s a clone (maybe Vlad and Lex even collaborated to perfect the cloning process) and mocks her about it.
I've got a subject I'm fairly sure you haven't been asked about, before. What do you think about Krypto? Where and how does he fit into Superman's narrative and the larger DCU? Do you miss Morrison's direwolf Krypto as much as I do? And, most importantly, is he a good boy?
YES HE IS A GOOD BOY, YES HE IS
His role is very simple: he’s Superman’s dog. That’s all that’s needed, he’s just a flying dog in a cape. Same as Kandor is a ship in a bottle and the Fortress is a basement where he keeps all his stuff, Krypto is just a normal part of a normal life, but he’s the version of that a superman has. I was definitely onboard for the direwolf, but generally proposals at making Krypto look more alien don’t work for me, since he’s supposed to be recognizably the silly super-version of a normal household dog. Insomuch as there’s an emotional depth unique to Superman’s mythology for Krypto, it’s that he’s the first other Kryptonian being Kal meets - one even personally close to him - but he can’t tell him anything about Krypton. But that’s a single story of material at best; he’s Superman’s very nice dog who also saves the day sometimes, and that’s all that’s needed.
I could stand to see the Doghouse of Solitude make a comeback though.
Superman and his pal Jimmy find themselves trapped in Kandor, and so adopt the disguises of Nightwing and Flamebird in order to stop some Kryptonian crooks, depite the Man of Steel bring robbed of his wonderful powers in Kandor’s artificial environment. This is not only part of 1963′s general theme of Superman fending for himself without his superhuman abilities, but the introduction of a persistent component of the franchise. If nothing else, the second stage of Dick Grayson’s superheroic career was – before retconning abolished these old Silver Age stories – directly informed by these alternate identities…
Superman and Jimmy playing Batman and Robin means, of course, that they must also have their own Ace the Bathound, thus the somewhat goony-looking “Nighthound.” Seems to me there’s a potential series in Nighthound and Swifty teaming up …
(Superman vol.1 No.158 and Superman’s Pal Jimmy Olsen vol.1 No.69)
I’ve just written up the debut of Nightwing and Flamebird – Superman and Jimmy Olsen’s Batman-and-Robin-style identities when they have to fight crime in the Bottle City of Kandor – for The Chronological Superman. I didn’t really like N&F when I was a kid (although that was a different pair, as depicted in Superman Family), but the idea has since really grown on me.
Were I in charge of the Superman titles, I’d definitely bring this back. It seems to me that it could serve a really interesting purpose. I figure, every now and again, Superman visits Kandor specifically to play the Nightwing role, in part to keep his fighting skills sharp, inasmuch as he doesn’t have powers in Kandor.
But, more to the point, I expect he’d do it in order to be wounded, beaten and in pain. From Superman’s perspective, it would be disrespectful to the ordinary humans who frequently put themselves in danger to help others – firefighters, search-and-rescue, police, many of his allies in the Justice League – to not take the same kinds of risks as they do and have similar experiences, even if it’s only once-in-a-while. Superman’s invulnerable, so to really understand the bravery of everyday humans, he’d need to push himself to his mortal limits, and occasionally get a split lip or a bruised rib…