Tag Archives: Superman

Superman on Trial

LOS ANGELES (AP) — DC Comics will retain its rights to Supermanafter a judge ruled Wednesday that the heirs of one of the superhero’s co-creators signed away their ability to reclaim copyrights to the Man of Steel roughly 20 years ago.

The ruling means that DC Comics and its owner Warner Bros. will retain all rights to continue using the character in books, films, television and other mediums, including a the film reboot planned for next year.

DC Comics sued the heirs of artist Joe Shuster in 2010, seeking a ruling that they lost their ability to try to reclaim the superhero’s copyrights in 1992. U.S. District Court Judge Otis Wright II agreed, stating that Shuster’s sister and brother relinquished any chance to reclaim Superman copyrights in exchange for annual pension payments from DC Comics.

Shuster and writer Jerry Siegel created Superman, who made his comic book debut in 1938 in Action Comics (hash)1. Both men battled for increased compensation for the superhero throughout their lives and Siegel’s heirs have also fought DC for a stake in copyrights to Superman.

Shuster’s heirs had argued that the copyright agreements could be terminated under provisions that allowed creators of works made before 1978 a mechanism to reclaim their rights. Wright ruled that the decision by Shuster’s sister to accept higher annual payments created a new agreement and the pre-1978 rights no longer applied. Continue reading


The New 52s: One Year Later – Action Comics

If you asked me a year ago what is the worst thing comics have ever done I would have told you something along the lines of DC ruining Superman.  One year and 24 issues (12 Superman and 12 Action) later and I am coming off that statement a bit.  In fact I really enjoy the Superman title I think George Perez started a good book and Jurgens has continued and improved the title.  Grant Morrison, not so much.  Morrison is a great writer and maybe that is the problem, he is talented and he is creative and he is trying to make Superman his own.  Superman belongs to the people, not Grant Morrison.

I despised Issue #1 of Action Comics more than I have ever disliked anything in print before.  Mostly because I love Superman so much, to watch it be torn apart I felt like the South Park kids after they seen Indian Jones and the Crystal Skull and brought George Lucas And Steven Spielberg up on criminal charges.  Issue #2 was not any better.  Superman’s early attitude and cockiness is something I can not warm up to or get use to in this title.  Society’s distrust and reluctance to welcome Superman is something I found irritating at first but have accepted as not only part of the story, but an interesting change from perfection and happiness that I have read for the past 30 years.

Beyond a rough start I think issues #5 and #6 just got plain confusing, in the middle of a cross issue story line they just up and dropped into a new story set in a different timeline of the DC Universe with characters we don’t know.  Looking back on this another year from now it will probably make some sense, DC has a way of back telling a tale and having it make sense in a Momento sort of progression, Continue reading

The New 52s: One Year Later – Superman

One  year ago I tore Superman’s relaunch apart.   Now, I am wrong about as often as Jimmy Olsen says “golly, gee Mr. Kent” so you know there is no way will ever have to comeback on my initial review.  Usually I just stew in secret, but this claim was made in public.  Hey! Even four readers is public.

I read the first two issues of Action Comics, the first title of the Superman line to see the shelves and my ability to read anything Superman without bias was clouded in my utter disdain for the aforementioned experience.  A year away and a dozen issues of  Superman have given me some reason to reconsider.

Now I won’t make this all my fault, I blame Grant Morrison who wrote Action Comics issues 1 & 2.  This isn’t about Action, but I still stand by my initial claim that they were terrible.  He wrote Superman with a Batman-edge, he was gritty and pompous, almost vain.  I was so offended that Superman was written anything but a boy scout I didn’t even try to read Superman # 1 for what it was, I read the first few pages and threw it away.  Now looking back and reading the first 12 issues I have to admit, I was wrong… wrong for not giving Superman Comics a fair shot.

George Perez’s initial kick-off run and Dan Jurgens’s continued efforts of a more mature and developed Man of Steel have been nothing short of amazing.   Continue reading

A Few of Greatest Comics I Have Ever Read

(in no particular order)

Peter Parker: Spider-Man

Vol 2, Issue #35 (Nov 2001)

“Heroes Don’t Cry”

Peter Parker: Spider-Man – A young kid believe Spider-Man visits him, his imaginary friend if you will.  It’s the comic version of an after school special.  The young boy uses his Spidey-Friend as an escape from his abusive house hold where his father hits his mom.

I am not really one for the softer-side of comic stories but this one really touches your heart.  As the young boy tells Spidey he can’t be friends because it is time to grow up and move with his aunt after a terrible incident at home Spider-Man removes his mask.  I have never fully understood the implication to be that Spider-Man is in us all or that Spider-Man is black (like the boy) because that this is how the boy imagines him.  One of the best “un-Superhero” stories I have read.  It was also released right after September 11th so a story like that in a time when the whole world felt horrible was a real change of pace. Continue reading

D.C. Hates its Fans aka The Fall of DC

The DC 52 reset was supposed to clean the slate, bring in new readers, fix the confusion caused by a decade of tie-ins, crossovers and cross franchise epic storylines that they said was limiting growth.

For 6 months it was working.  Titles stayed fairly to themselves, you could buy just one title and read what you enjoyed most, and from the feedback in numbers DC was selling again.

Then new-DC resumed to old-DC ways.

This past month we started with “Night of the Owls” and it will carry across all Batman related titles to tell a tale of Gotham’s long forgotten secret society.  And now newly announced this will roll into the fall as such, than DC has planned for us, the “Prince of Gotham” another cross title Nightwing story that will bring Dick’s character into his own.

If I want to read Batman or Nightwing or Batwoman, let me read them.  Don’t force me to read JLA, Red Hood and Dark Knight just to understand an issue that has invaded my timeline.

DC just couldn’t resist ruining a good thing.  And they have lost a reader.  Doubtful they will care, nor will they notice one less subscriber.  But how many readers are thinking the same thing?  How many people are realizing it is now business as usual?  And when does DC announce the New 52s was all just Clark Kent’s big dream and we just read a giant 24 month crossover?

I give up DC, you have conned me for the last time.  I am joining Comics Anonymous tomorrow.

Gotham Chronicles Issue #0

Continue reading

Here Lies Superman

It seems a bit unfair to only give it a few issues to pan out, but the relationship is over.

  • I can take the story change/reset.
  • I can handle the costume change.
  • I can take Superman and Lois not being an item.

But these changes in Superman’s personality do not bode well with me.  Superman is an icon of purity, he is a full-grown boy scout.  He helps old ladies cross the street, he rescues cats from the tree.  In the years since 1932 Superman has never been case as a jerk, sure he is a jerk to criminals, but he is a jerk all the same.
As I said, I have given this 3-issues; Superman #1 and Action Comics #1 and #2.  The 52’s in general have been good, and to be honest, the Superman story is not poorly written, just a poor image of the Man of Steel.  I had originally said Superman was a rehashed image of Batman, I take that back, Batman fights what Gotham’s Finest can not handle.  Superman has spent the majority of his time apprehending the common criminal and threatening them with extreme punishment.  No wonder that Metropolis hates him, hoodlums are a job for the Metropolis PD.  Right now he is acting like a man in a cape running around finishing children’s puzzles while trash talking to the 4-year old trying to work it out alone.
Now let’s not make this about “real life,” comics should be about imagination, but hanging a mobster hundreds of feet up and being threatened with a one way trip to the concrete was wishfully a young maturing mistake, in the more mature version of Kal-El in the Superman Comics he threatens car-jackers with being tossed into the water to drown, then reconsiders and threatens to launch them into space.  So now Superman is judge, jury and executioner?  Or maybe just threatens people with death to make them fess up.   If a cop does this we want them removed from their patrol and they sue the city.  Besides opening any criminal case up to a confession under duress, Superman is acting above the Morals of Society.
Had this been the storylines to Resurrection Man or one of the other new or re-imagined lesser lines I would have no issue with morality.  But Superman was invented around morality and what is right and wrong.  Superman is not supposed to be a vigilante.

Action Comics #1 (2011)

So Superman in jeans, hmmm.  Well you know what I can accept costume change.  Batman has had numerous redesigns, Superman has been more minor tweaks for the most part.  But if you look back you will see several times where they deviated drastically, think the “Death of…” or the electric look.  Very different changes, but easy enough to comeback, even a dramatic entrance, sort of like Jordan coming back with the 23 jersey from halftime.  They can try a new outfit and work the traditional in with little effect on “history.”

I love Superman, I grew up with Superman.  I have watched him change over the years, I watched him die, I saw him wed, I even followed the electric blue and red line with pretty solid interest.

This smells like your roommates dirty Nikes after football in the rain and left in the hallway on a hot August afternoon to really ripen the atmosphere of a 2-bedroom brick building in college.

Imagine the Superman Returns team deciding to take over the comic… yep that is what we have.  No, I take that back, it’s worse.

I think DC sat down to brainstorm Superman and agreed he IS DC.  Batman is big, but Supes they feel needs to be the flagship.  They talked about Batman’s popularity and discussed what makes him successful and said, let’s make that the next Superman. What?!?! Yep.

Superman is an asshole.  There it took only 2 full blogs, but I swore, I tried to hold back and make this one a bit more family friendly but how else do you describe it.  Superman taunts, he terrorizes confessions out of criminals and he actually beats them until they say they did it.  Wow, when did Brainiac pull the whole Bruce Wayne/Clark Kent brain switcheroo?

I don’t know what is going on but this is really reminiscent of the “bad” Superman of Superman III.  I found that entertaining because they set the Golden Boy image and you knew that was an effect of the chemical kryptonite Gus gave him at the Key ceremony for Smallville.  This, this is the honest to goodness Jerk Superman in denim.

There is not much I can say about the book, you really need to read it for yourself.  I subscribed to this one back in the summer when I heard about the relaunch, this will likely be my first subscribe.  I am going to give the book a few issues to iron out, but I don’t see this relationship going much past 2nd base.

I see a Pa Kent conversation coming soon very much like you would expect, but Ma and Pa would have never raised Clack to be an arrogant jerk.  Bad move DC.

NEXT: Detective

%d bloggers like this: