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NUM-INOUS COMICS PT. 2

This essay is a very belated response to a " part 1 " published in February 2015. The gist of that essay was a response to a corre...

Thursday, January 26, 2017

UNTIMELY RUMINATIONS #1

The end of 2016 also brought the end of the oldest comics-oriented fan-apa in the U.S., CAPA-ALPHA, of which I was a member. The apa will continue in an electronic format but I chose to terminate my participation with the conclusion of the paper format.

I'm also in the process of sussing through a lot of the old apa-zines I accumulated. I only want to keep stuff that I think I may use for reference later, including my own works. However, I'm egotistical enough to want to preserve a few observations I made back in the olden days, possibly to build on said insights later

Here's something I wrote (with a little language clean-up) back when the 1996 SUPERMAN cartoon premiered.

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I agree that SUPERMAN has not proven to have a "vision at work." Maybe it's because it's harder for creators to agree on what Superman means than Batman. As a very loose comparison I can see more agreement on Batman's meaning within the works of Englehart, Miller, and O'Neil-- different as each writer may be from each other-- than I see regarding Superman's meaning in works by Maggin, Moore and Byrne. I did get one mythic buzz from the first episode, though. In the concluding scene between Superman and Luthor-- largely copied from a similar scene in the LOIS AND CLARK premiere-- there's a line where Luthor says something about "owning" Metropolis. The line itself is not special, but it made me realize that Luthor stands in the same position as the somewhat corrupt master of Fritz Lang's film METROPOLIS. This character, name of Fredersen, controls the city in a ruthless manner, but he's brought back to a sense of common humanity by his son Freder. In the cartoon Superman becomes a more combative version of this "son" figure. I don't know that anyone ever explored the Luthor-Superman relationship as being between "evil father and righteous son" in a sustained manner. However, there is a weird Jerry Siegel tale in which Luthor journeys through time and space to Jor-El's Krypton. There the villain seeks to inveigle Superman's mom into marrying him instead of Jor-El, with the idea that when he Luthor returns to his own time and space, Superman won't be able to interfere with anything his "father" does. It's a pretty weird story, even for 1960s Weisinger-Superman, but it may contain a dollop of psychological truth.


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