The Chronological Superman 1956: If I’m being truly honest, I have to admit that Superman’s Pal Jimmy Olsen doesn’t do much for me as a comic (not for its first couple of decades, anyway). Jimmy’s formula is weird and bears many variations, but all in all I find it sluggish and repetitive in a way even other books of the Silver Age aren’t. Hard words, my friends, but I stick with ‘em.
This infamous panel, however, will never fail to bring me some measure of delight. (Superman’s Pal Jimmy Olsen No.12)
This is a personal favorite story. Jimmy attends a wrestling event and, offended that wrestling is fake (!!), dresses up as Elastic Lad to teach some wrestlers what’s what. This also includes him messing with The Ugly Superman, who swipes Jimmy’s elastic fluid (Superman’s Pal Jimmy Olsen vol.1 No.54).
This story is reprinted a few years down the road with additional pages, so I’ll cover it more in-depth then (so I can discuss the individual wrestlers. They’re terrific, every one of them)
“Now, as part of the celebration of the 100th birthday of Jack Kirby, DC collects Kirby’s entire runs on these four series—THE NEW GODS, THE FOREVER PEOPLE, MISTER MIRACLE and SUPERMAN’S PAL JIMMY OLSEN—In a single volume. These comics spanned galaxies, from the streets of Metropolis to the far-flung twin worlds of New Genesis and Apokolips, as cosmic-powered heroes and villains struggle for supremacy, and the world-conquering Darkseid adventured across Earth for the deadly Anti-Life Equation.
Collects SUPERMAN’S PAL JIMMY OLSEN #133-139 and 141-148, THE NEW GODS #1-11, THE FOREVER PEOPLE #1-11, MISTER MIRACLE #1-18, plus later stories from NEW GODS #4 and DC GRAPHIC NOVEL #4.”
It’s a big year for imaginary super-offspring, and – I believe, anyway, I’d need to research this before I declare myself 100% confident in this next sentiment – it’s the first time imaginary super-offspring have gotten names!
The plot device of Superman and Lois (or any other pairing) having super-children is a relatively recent invention anyway*, but even the super-twins who debuted last year in the “Mr. and Mrs.Clark (Superman) Kent” imaginary story serial didn’t have names at first.
So, Mrs. and Mrs Clark (Superman) Kent are proud to announce the birth of their twins Larry and Carole**, as per Superman’s Girlfriend Lois Lane vol.1 No.23, and their super-daughter Lola in a different imaginary story from Superman’s Pal Jimmy Olsen vol.1 No.56.
(Larry and Carole are the third pair of super-twins in these stories, but are not to be confused with the unnamed twins from an earlier Imaginary Story, or the twin children of lookalikes Van-Zee and Sylvia DeWitt, who are Lili and Lyle. Twins run in the family, it appears)
*(In 1949 (Superman vol.1 No.57), Superman met Lois 4XR, Lois Lane’s identical lookalike great-great-etc-granddaughter, who may have been his offspring as well – hard to say since everybody in this future world (the 30th Century, of course) boasted super-powers regardless of their heritage. Anyway, the reason I mention this is not only because Lois 4XR is a possible super-offspring of a Lois/Superman pairing, but also because the story was lightly rewritten, redrawn, and run a second time in Superman’s Girlfriend Lois Lane vol.1 No.28, released in October 1961!)
**”Larry” and “Carole” seem like such arbitrary names for the super-twins, particularly since we reside in a world of Jonathan, Christopher and Joseph Kents, and their predecessors Jor-El Kent and Kal Jr, etc, all of whom make particular sense either in-continuity or out. It only eventually dawned on me that it’s “L(arry)” for “Lois” and “C(arole)” for “Clark.” Nicely played, old Superman comics, nicely played …
A story from Superman’s Pal Jimmy Olsen vol.1 No.58 in which Jimmy appears to be getting into clinches with all sorts of Hollywood bombshells gives artist Al Plastino a chance to practice his celebrity likenesses (or bust out a lightbox)