Episode 66: November 1990

Welcome to the sixty-sixth episode of From Crisis to Crisis: A Superman Podcast! This podcast has a simple premise; examine just about every Superman comic published between Man of Steel #1 in 1986 to Adventures of Superman #649 in 2006 in an informative and hopefully entertaining format.

Part index. Part commentary. Part history lesson. All podcast.

All right, folks, listen up. Before listening to this episode you will want to grab a cup of coffee, call in sick to work and clear your schedules because this episode is a MONSTER. Not only do the boys have a special guest this week in the form of podcast host extraordinaire Jon M. Wilson but also because the Superman books with the November 1990 cover date are all part of the Krisis of the Krimson Kryptonite storyline. This is an epic story arc that not only runs through Superman #49, Adventures of Superman #472 and Action Comics #659 but also Starman #28 as well. In Krisis Lex Luthor receives a gift from Mr. Mxyzptlk; a piece of Red Kryptonite. The Red K robs Superman of his powers and the Man of Steel has to suddenly deal with threats like Mammoth and a prison riot at Stryker’s Island without his abilities. If that wasn’t enough but Lois’ mother is sick again and needs to lean on Clark for support. So things aren’t going all that good for Superman but at least he has back up in the form of Starman, Gangbuster, the Guardian and a suit of armor built by Professor Hamilton.

After those four issues Jon, Jeff and Mike talk about Superboy: The Comic Book #10, the Superboy television series as well as covering Elsewhere in the DCU and Elsewhere, Elsewhere.

Oh, and there are tangents. Lots and lots of tangents, so heads up on that.

By the by: you can hear Jon on both Amazing Spider-Man Classics and Teenage Wasteland: An Ultimate Spider-Man Podcast.

Next Week: Jon Wilson returns! The final chapter of Krisis of the Krimson Kryptonite! A BIG questions is asked. Superman teams up with not one but two Green Lanterns! Finally, the death of Lex Luthor!

No additional scans this week.  Things have been crazy and Mike just didn’t have the time.  They will return soon, though.  Promise

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Seriously, let us know what you think.

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  1. Another great episode, guys. Michael, I really get a kick out of your recollections of when you bought a particular issue because I do the same thing with this era of comics. Much like how hearing a hit song from days gone by sends many people back to their youth, I can look at these covers and recall exactly what was going on in my life when these stories were released.

    Man, was this a long episode. It makes me wonder what we’re in for come 1995-2000 when there are four Superman titles, Superboy, Supergirl, Steel and JLA. Even if the last four only get the truncated treatment that Superboy: The Comic Book has been getting, that’s a lot of comics to cover.

    And I have to agree with your pick for this time frame as your “Silver Age.” The Death of Clark Kent seems to be a fair marker for the end of that era, what with Dan Jurgens’ departure as artist. What’s your Bronze Age? Up until the wedding/Superman Blue?

    Since it came up this episode, has Wolfman ever said what the original plan was for that storyline where Lex gave Lois the medicine for her mother? I agree that it’s strange that it was ignored after Adventures 424, only to be brought up here and then never mentioned again.

  2. penfold says:

    Wow, huge episode. But if ever there was a storyline that deserved it, this’d be the one. Until Superman #75 anyway… which, in my opinion, deserves an episode unto itself.

    Hey Michael, I know you sometimes lament the longer episodes but there’s a time and a place for them, and this was definitely it.

    Good episode all around, in my opinion.

    – t

  3. Michael Bailey says:

    The only reason I sometimes lament the longer episodes is because they take longer to edit. The episode came out at three hours, but there was five hours of audio to go through. This isn’t a complaint, more of an observation. You are right; sometimes a longer episode has its place. Last night Jeffrey and I recorded what we assumed was going to be a standard episode and we ended up having this epic conversation about the adventures of Superman issue. So it happens.

  4. Jeffrey Taylor says:

    I think we deftly managed to mention the underlying issue in that Adventures book without overtly taking a stance on the issue. This will be in episode 68.

  5. Ah, yes… the drunk driving/pull-the-plug issue. I can’t help but think that if that issue had happened in the current era, where message boards and blogs freak out over anything controvercial, the reaction would have been far more heated and ugly than when it was published. I count the issue as one of my favorite Jurgens stories, but I can just see some far-right blogger stirring up a frenzy over the fact that Superman issue directly addressed a family pulling the plug on a patient who stood no chance of recovery.

    When you consider that the internet has freaked out about far less when it comes to comics in recent years, it’s sadly not that far-fetched. And that’s a shame because writers deserve the same freedom Jurgens had to incorporate issues like that without being taken down for merely raising said issues.

    Shifting gears, Michael, you made an excellent point in the last episode regarding how Adventure Comics would have likely been very different had Legion of 3 Worlds been completed on schedule. As that would have likely led to Conner’s solo title debuting in February rather than July, it would have probably meant at least five more months of Johns on Conner, and perhaps even changes to the whole of New Krypton.

    I recall that Matt Idelson said that the original plan was for a 3-month buildup after “New Krypton” and before Superman left Earth for “World of New Krypton.” There was also mention that some ideas intended for Adventure ended up being moved over to “Superman.” All of that had me wondering if the Mon-El storyline ended up as a quick patch job and that perhaps the original plan would have been for Conner to be the real “fill-in” for Clark. (Delay WONK by three months and start the first Conner storyline in Jan or Feb and you can get through that arc in enough time for him to take Clark’s place in Metropolis.)

    I guess someone will one day have to corner Geoff or Matt at a convention and ask them what the original plans were.

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