COLLECTED EDITIONS – SUPERMAN: THE MAN OF STEEL VOLUME 8

(Collected Editions is a listing of the various trade paperbacks, hardcovers, omnibuses, etc. that are in my Superman collection.  The goal is to not only inventory my collection of trades, hardcovers, etc. but also to display said collection and produce something resembling a resource for other Superman readers, collectors and fans.)115- Man of Steel Vol. 8 A 116- Man of Steel Vol. 8 B

Nuts and Bolts

  • Released on January 31, 2013
  • Original Price $16.99
  • 240 pages
  • Cover by John Byrne, George Perez and Jerry Ordway

Contents

  • Checkmate! from Action Comics #598
  • He Only Laughs When I Hurt from Superman (Vol. 2) #16
  • Tin Soldiers! from Adventures of Superman #439
  • Element 126 from Action Comics #599
  • Cries in the Night from Superman (Vol. 2) #17
  • The Hurrieder I Go from Adventures of Superman #440
  • Different Worlds, Chapter One: First Date… from Action Comics #600
  • Different Worlds, Chapter Two: Fallen Idols from Action Comics #600
  • Different Worlds, Chapter Three: Broken-Mirrors from Action Comics #600
  • Different Worlds, Chapter Four: Battle! from Action Comics #600
  • Different Worlds, Chapter Five: This Hollow Victory… from Action Comics #600
  • Untitled Lois Lane Story from Action Comics #600
  • Games People Play from Action Comics #600
  • A Friend In Need from Action Comics #600
  • The Dark Where Madness Lies from Action Comics #600
  • Return to Krypton from Superman (Vol. 2) #18
  • Pin-Up Gallery from Action Comics #600

Notes

  • The cover is a mash-up of John Byrne and George Perez art from the secondary cover of Action Comics #600 and some interior art from Adventures of Superman #440.  While I would have preferred an original cover, specifically one by Jerry Ordway, this one works just fine.
  • Besides, they broke the original Ordway cover theme with the previous volume of this series.
  • Action Comics #598 was the first appearance of Checkmate.  That organization would get its own title soon a month after this issue hit the stands and would last for 33 issues, all written by Paul Kupperberg.
  • Superman #16 was the first Post-Crisis appearance of the Prankster.  It was also the first Post-Crisis appearance of Morgan Edge.
  • Oh, and that Supergirl that showed up on the final page of that issue?  Yeah, she leads to something big.
  • Personal note: I have a very vivid memory of getting Adventures of Superman #439 at the Super Fresh grocery store in Trexlertown, PA.  I read most of it in the parking lot while waiting for whoever was driving that day (my mother, my sister, my dad…I don’t remember) to get back to the car.
  • There was a sixteen page Bonus Book in the middle of Action Comics #599 that is not reprinted here.  The story itself was a 14 page Jimmy Olsen story titled The Karma Baggers.  The Bonus Book program was designed to give new talent a shot at writing and drawing comic stories.
  • The Silver Banshee makes her second appearance in Superman #17.  We get a little more of her back story here and meet her brother.  This story will be resolved in Superman #23, but not by John Byrne.  Roger Stern and Mike Mignola produce that story.
  • Oh, we also get to see Jimmy’s mom towards the end of this issue.  This had been a low-level sub-plot for a few issues and the final revelation was a surprise.  The fact that she turned out to be so…attractive was also something of a surprise.
  • I guess you could say that Jimmy’s mom has got it going on.
  • Adventures of Superman #440 is a fun issue.  Seeing Superman all giddy because of his date with Wonder Woman humanized the character and was very endearing.
  • Superman also gets Batman’s report on the scrapbook that was sent to him in Superman #5.  This was significant because after this Batman knew that Superman was Clark Kent and Superman revealed that he knew Batman was Bruce Wayne.
  • Superman also learns that the scrapbook was his mother’s.  It was taken by Lex Luthor’s men in Superman #2.  Eventually we learn that Amanda McCoy sent Clark the scrapbook after being fired by Lex Luthor.
  • Action Comics #600 was a huge deal when it came out in February of 1988.  This was the comic book end of Superman’s 50th Anniversary celebration that also included a cover story in Time Magazine, a television special on NBC and an exhibition at the National Museum of American History, which is part of the Smithsonian complex in Washington, D.C.
  • The books was made to look like the Eighty Page Giants that were popular in the sixties and seventies.
  • The date between Superman and Wonder Woman which led to the fight with the Fourth World characters was an exciting story that ended with the two heroes parting as friends.  The timing of this story being reprinted at the end of 2013 when the Superman and Wonder Woman of the New 52 are involved romantically could be good timing or a calculated move to capitalize on that relationship or both.
  • The Lois Lane story was scripted by Roger Stern.  This would be the first story he would write/script for the Superman titles.  A few months later he would write the main story from Superman Annual #2 and soon after that he would start writing Superman with the previously mentioned issue 23.
  • When I first read Games People Play I had no idea that Maggie Sawyer was a lesbian.  I had yet to read issue fifteen but more importantly I was 12 and such things tended to go over my head.  This is my favorite story from the issue.  The writing was very strong and it was a good confrontation between Lex and Maggie.
  • The final issue in this collection resulted, in part, to the Zero Hour event in 1994.  It’s not a direct cause and effect relationship but Dan Jurgens did cite this story as one of the reasons he wanted to iron out the continuity.
  • Hawkman and Hawkwoman play a key part in that story.  A year later Tim Truman wrote and drew the prestige format Hawkworld, which rebooted Hawkman for the Post Crisis world.  That series took place in the then present day DCU, so the ex-patriot Katar Hol that gave Superman a ride to Krypton didn’t exist anymore so that story suddenly “didn’t happen”.  This sort of thing rubbed Dan the wrong way and between that and some other continuity problems that had cropped up since the Crisis on Infinite Earths went down Zero Hour was born.
  • I am really glad they included the pin-ups from Action Comics #600, which included the first Superman work of Jon Bogdanove. 
  • Personal note: My sister Mary gave me my first copy of Action Comics #600 for my birthday in 1988.  She gave me that, a copy of World of Smallville #2 and a tape with three of the Fleisher animated shorts on it.  I was born on February 29th, so getting those comics and cartoons on my birthday and then getting to watch the NBC special that night…well, I was a happy Superman fan that year.
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