BIZARRO WORLD – CLASSIC WHO’S WHO

(originally published in Who’s Who: The Definitive Directory of the DC Universe #2, April 1985)

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If you would like to hear a really awesome podcast talking about this entry check out Who’s Who: The Definitive Podcast of the DC Universe hosted by Rob Kelly and the Irredeemable Shag.  You can find the episode where they cover this entry HERE.

Bizarro WorldWelcome to another installment of Who’s Who Classic, a regular feature here at the Fortress where every Monday I will present an entry from the original series of Who’s Who comics that DC published between 1984 and 1988.  Superman was well represented in those series and I wanted to share the entries with you just in case you have never seen them.  Today’s entry am Bizarro World!

COLLECTED EDITIONS – SUPERMAN: THE MAN OF STEEL VOL. 5

(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.)

Man of Steel Vol. 5A Man of Steel Vol. 5BNuts and Bolts

  • Released on November 11, 2006
  • Original price is $19.99
  • 208 pages
  • Cover artist Jerry Ordway

Contents

  • Introduction by Mike Carlin
  • “To Laugh and Die in Metropolis” from Superman (Vol. 2) #9
  • “Gang War Part 1: From the Streets to the Streets!” from Adventures of Superman #432
  • “…A Walk on the Darkside!” from Action Comics #592
  • “The Suicide Snare” from Action Comics #593
  • “The Super Menace of Metropolis!” from Superman (Vol. 2) #10
  • “Gang War Part 2: a tragedy in five acts” from Adventures of Superman #433
  • “The Name Game” from Superman (Vol. 2) #11
  • “Gang War Part 3: Shambles” from Adventures of Superman #434
  • “The Circle Turns” from Adventures of Superman #435
  • Cover Gallery

Notes

  • The introduction by Mike Carlin details his own history with Superman (he and the big guy go way back) and how he came to edit the Superman titles.  I have very few real life heroes but if I made a list Mike Carlin would be on it mainly for his contribution to Superman but also because he edited the books during my formative years.
  • Leading off with the main story from Superman #9 was a strong way to open this trade.  However…
  • Metropolis 900 Milesis missing.  For those that only read these issues in this trade there was this amazing Lex Luthor story in the back of Superman #9 called Metropolis 900 Miles.  The story was pretty simple; Lex stops by a roadside diner and makes an indecent proposal to one of the waitresses.  The ending solidified that this Lex Luthor was E-V-I-L.  And that story is not in this book.  Which is disappointing.
  • I mean it would have fit nicely right before Superman #10.
  • Seriously.
  • It would have.
  • Anyway…
  • The placing of issues is once again eyebrow raising in this trade.  I liked that they put Action Comics #592 and #593 one right after the other.  It just makes sense.  Again, however…
  • Gang War, the three issue storyline that ran through Adventures of Superman #s 432-434 is not put one right after the other.  I think this was a misstep.  The story flows much better when read altogether and this was a good opportunity to do that.  Not the worst thing that could happen but still.
  • This collection contains the first appearance of Gangbuster.  It is not the first appearance of Jose Delgado.  Neither is Adventures of Superman #432, by the way.  Two editions of Who’s Who got that wrong.  Jose first appeared in a blink and you’ll miss him panel in Adventures of Superman #428.  This might seem nit picky, but I produce a blog about Superman so this sort of thing is to be expected.
  • This collection also contains the first Post-Crisis appearance of Mr. Mxyzptlk.  It’s very keen.
  • The final issue in this collection is Adventures of Superman #435, which not only has an amazing cover by Jerry Ordway but also marks the last issue in Marv Wolfman’s run on the title.  It was kind of a lackluster end too but according to Wolfman he was burned out at this point so that makes sense.  It’s a shame too because his Pre-Crisis Superman work was amazing and there were so many elements of his twelve issues that I liked quite a bit.
  • The cover gallery is full sized this time out, which is also keen.

To follow the series as it progress check out the following links:

THE 2012 CHRISTMAS HAUL

Yesterday was Christmas and as usual it was awesome.  Rachel and I slept in (which will change when we eventually have kids, so I am enjoying that while I can) got up, made some breakfast and soon the opening of presents began.  It was a light year because money has been kind of tight but Rachel managed to snag me some great presents, a few of which are Superman related.

X-Mas 2012 AIt may surprise some of you to learn that I don’t own all of Smallville on DVD.  There are a few reasons for this.  Actually there is one reason for this; I am cheap when it comes to buying DVDs.  Unless I ABSOLUTELY have to have it the week it comes out I will go years without buying a movie or a season of a television series because I know down the road it will be cheaper.  So the Smallville box sets (at least the back half of the series) have eluded me thus far.  Target had these for a good price so I put them on my wish list.  Lo and behold Rachel got them for me.  Now all I need is Seasons 7 and 10 and I’ll have the whole series.

For the record I will be watching these fairly soon.  Even though I can’t recall seeing any of Season 7 and only a handful of episodes from Seasons 8 thru 10 I know enough to dive into these without having to wait to get the seventh season.  I’m looking forward to it too.  My feeling is that these will go down much better now that the series has been over for well over a year now and all of the problems I had with it are firmly in the past.  I’ll let you know if this is the case.

X-Mas 2012 C X-Mas 2012 BRachel also got me a nice shirt and sleep pants set.  Technically they aren’t an according to Hoyle set and were bought at two different stores but she thought they would look good together and so they are mine.  These will be my, “It’s really cold today” lounging clothes.

And that is pretty much it.  A modest haul but a haul nonetheless.  As always my wife got me some great stuff and most of the presents were Superman related.  I hope everyone had a good holiday and got everything they wanted as well.

Normal service resumes tomorrow.

More to follow…

CHRISTMAS 2012

Back in 2008 I made a post around Christmas time pertaining to this plate.  It is a bit…raw in terms of humor but I thought it might be fun to post it again and maybe make a tradition of it.  Oddly enough it is a tradition I have stuck to over the years.

Enjoy and know that I am probably going to Hell for his.

Superman has a rather pleasant look on his face and is inviting Batman to come in.  Secretly he’s thinking, “Great Rao, Bruce, get that batarang out of your ass and join the party.”

Why is Plastic Man giving Hal Jordan a back rub?

Plastic Man is also checking out Superman’s behind.  It’s why he wears the sunglasses, by the way.  That way he can just stare and stare and no one will notice.

Hawkman is not having a good time because Hawkman NEVER has a good time.

Hawkgirl is about five seconds from telling Carter that he needs to stop being such an ass and have a good time or so help her Ra she is leaving him and shaking up with Green Arrow.  She doesn’t care that Green Arrow is with Dinah because secretly Dinah’s into that kind of thing and Hawkgirl knows this.

Wonder Woman is enjoying herself because the pagan nature of the Christmas tree appeals to her upbringing.

Aquaman really wants to ask Zatana out.  Zatana doesn’t even know he’s alive.

Zatana…I really have nothing here.  Zatana is just having a good time and misses her Dad.  I mean he’s dead, right?  Has DC retconned that yet?

Captain Marvel doesn’t get any of the jokes that Ollie tells, but he laughs anyway so he doesn’t look like a dork.

Barry so wants to call him out on that.

Ollie is secretly thinking how awesome it would be to bag Hawkgirl and Black Canary at the same time and be part of a Pretty Bird Sandwich.

Dinah wants to leave Ollie for Hawkgirl.

What…in the hell…is Red Tornado drinking?

J’onn is on his fifth Manhattan and is getting to be a bit of a jerk.

Batman is thinking about how he is an orphan because Batman is ALWAYS thinking about the fact that he is an orphan and everyone wants to tell him to knock that crap off but he has those files on how to kill them so they keep quiet and Batman really, really likes that.

MERRY CHRISTMAS, EVERYONE!

DC COSMIC CARDS – FAMOUS COVERS

Another Friday, another set of scans from the DC Cosmic Cards set.

Cosmic Cards Action Comics A Cosmic Cards Action Comics B Cosmic Cards Comic A Cosmic Cards Comic B

The cover gallery thing is something that the first series of Marvel trading cards did, so it makes sense that we would see it with the first DC set as well.  It is hard to write about the covers to Action Comics #1 and Superman #1 because they are so iconic at this point.  Both are equally awesome and serve different functions.  Action Comics‘ cover was designed to grab a eight to ten year old’s attention and show them something they might never have seen before.  Superman‘s cover is there to say, “HEY!  SUPERMAN IS IN THIS COMIC!  BUY IT!”  So I can’t choose one over the other.

Now you’ll have to excuse me because this fence isn’t going to sit on itself.

More to follow…

FCTC EPISODE 150: NOVEMBER 1993 PART 2

Episode 150: November 1993 Part 2

Welcome to the ONE HUNDRED AND FIFTIETH 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.

One hundred and fifty episodes.

From Crisis to Crisis has made it to the one hundred and fiftieth episode mark.

And Mike has yet to kill Jeff.

It truly is a miracle.

Anyway, the boys are back with their 150th episode.  Most shows would make a big deal out of this.  Mike and Jeff are going to buck that trend.  They are doing their best to get back on track.  So this time out they close the books on the Superman titles with a November 1993 cover date.  In ADVENTURES OF SUPERMAN #506 Cadmus comes after Superboy and Superman gets involved.  The boys like to call this a back door pilot because…well, it’s a back door pilot.  Then in ACTION COMICS #693 we find out the final fate of the Eradicator and boy is it weird.  This is also a back door pilot of sorts but in an equally weird way.  Finally Mike leads you through Elsewhere in the DCU.

Quick note for those seeing this soon after it hits the Internet; as next week is Christmas (hello, future people) there will be no episode.

You can subscribe to the show in two ways. First there is the RSS Feed and there is also the iTunes link.

If you want to comment on the show or contact the hosts you can always private message Mike and Jeff, at the Superman Homepage, leave comments here or at the Homepage or here or email them by clicking this link.  All questions, concerns, fears, trepidations and cheap shots are welcome.

Next time: A special episode focusing on the first few episodes of LOIS AND CLARK: THE NEW ADVENTURES OF SUPERMAN.

COLLECTED EDITIONS – SUPERMAN: THE MAN OF STEEL VOL. 4

(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.)

Man of Steel Vol. 4A Man of Steel Vol. 4BNuts and Bolts

  • Released on August 24, 2005
  • Original cover price $19.99
  • 192 pages
  • Cover by Jerry Ordway

Contents

  • Introduction: Superman or Superboy?
  • Rampage! from Superman (Vol. 2) #7
  • Homeward Bound from Adventures of Superman #430
  • Better Dying Through Chemistry from Action Comics #590
  • A Twist in Time from Legion of Super-Heroes (Vol. 2) #37
  • Future Shock from Superman (Vol. 2) #8
  • Past Imperfect from Action Comics #591
  • The Greatest Hero of Them All from Legion of Super-Heroes (Vol. 2) #38
  • They Call Him — Doctor Stratos from Adventures of Superman #431
  • Cover Gallery

Notes

  • As you can see this edition was signed by Marv Wolfman.  This is what happens when I don’t think ahead.  Then again when I had him sign this at the 2006 DragonCon I couldn’t have known that one day I would have wanted to post the cover to this site.  Oh well.
  • The introduction gives a break down of why they had to tell the Superboy story reprinted in this book.  There is no credit given so I don’t know who wrote it.
  • This was the volume of the Superman: The Man of Steel series I was most looking forward to when it came out as it contains the two issues that really kicked off my Superman collection/addiction.  Superman #8 and Action Comics #591 were the books that started it all for me and the recoloring done for this trade really makes them pop.
  • It’s funny that I have complained about the reordering of the issues in past volumes and yet feel they should have led this trade off with Adventures of Superman #430 followed by Action Comics #590 and then the Rampage story from Superman #7.  I think the flow would have been smoother because you have Superman disappear at the end of Superman #7, pop up on the last page as Clark Kent, go on two adventures and then reveal what happened between those pages.  There is no perfect way to do it but I think Homeward Bound and Better Dying Through Chemistry would have been solid ways to open the trade.
  • On the other hand the Rampage story and the events of Superman #8 and Action Comics #591 are referenced in Homeward Bound so that shoots my theory down quite nicely.
  • I am glad they included the Legion of Super-Heroes issues for this volume.  While it wouldn’t have ruined the collection if they were left out it is still good to see them included.  It gives you the whole story in one convenient package and the final fate of the Pocket Universe Superboy is quite moving.
  • Still I am slightly jealous of those who are reading this story for the first time in its complete form.  Those issues were impossible to find during my teenage years so it wasn’t until 1996 or so that I was finally about to own them.  Darn buying all of my comics off of the newsstand in 1987.
  • Going back to how this book should have been arranged (which I still feel bad about discussing since I usually don’t like playing armchair editor) ending this volume with the Dr. Startos story was…a mistake.  It is such a weak story.  Again, you could have included that before the first Legion story and lost nothing in terms of the continuity of events.  Sure it would have ended things on a depressing note but at the same time the final pages of the second Legion issue are so strong that giving us sub-par Erik Larsen art and a pretty lame villain right after that just feels wrong.
  • The page count of this trade is smaller than the last.  That must be why they went back to the full page cover galleries instead of putting a bunch of covers on one page.

To follow the series as it progress check out the following links:

More to follow…

THE DEATH AND RETURN COVER GALLERY

While my constant Death and Return coverage might be over I can still revisit the event every once in a while, especially when I am suddenly able to do something I wasn’t able to do before.  So here are all of the covers from the Death and Return of Superman saga presented in chronological order just in case you wanted to see some hi-resolution scans of them.

This is my first gallery for the site and I am loving it.  The only problem I am currently having (which might be resolved in the future) is that if you click on an image and hit next button it goes to the next image I uploaded, not the next image in the gallery.  My dreams of being able to scroll through the gallery in the order I placed the images in have been dashed for the moment.  Still, it looks really neat and I am so glad I figured out how to/can finally do this sort of thing.

When you look at all of the covers in order you really get the enormity of this story.  Starting with the one page teases at the end of the November 1992 cover dated books going all the way through the November 1993 cover dated books where most of the sub-plots and character arcs from the story are resolved the creators involved told a truly epic story.  Was it perfect all the way through?  No, but no story or project on this scale will be perfect from start to finish.  It was entertaining and not only served to re-energize the Superman titles and bring in a whole bunch of new readers but also to remind us why Superman is the greatest hero of all.  Sometimes you have to lose something to realize how special it was.  Luckily they brought him back in fine fashion.

Enjoy the covers.  They are from my own collection, which is why you see the wear marks and in some cases some signatures.

More to follow…

YOUTUBE TUESDAY – LIGHT UP THE TREE, MR. PRESIDENT!

Welcome back to YouTube Tuesday, the day of the week where I get to be really lazy and instead of posting anything of substance I distract you with a shiny video.  With Christmas fast approaching (it’s only a week away now) I am in a holiday mood. 

As this is the week before Christmas and Christmas falls on a Tuesday this year there will be no YouTube Tuesday next week.  I have a tradition I have stuck to for the past few years in regards to what I present on Christmas Day, so that’s a lock as far as what I am going to post.  So this week I will do my final Christmas themed YouTube video.  Ladies and gentlemen, I present…Light Up The Tree, Mister President!, a Power Records classic.

Keep an ear out for the moment when the acid Clark took before the record began finally kicks in.  It’s around the 1 minute 39 second mark.

httpvh://www.youtube.com/watch?v=05xHOH8NW9g

From what my sister Jane tells me I had this record (or at least the compilation record that had the Superman, Batman and Wonder Woman Christmas stories on it) as a kid.  She sent it to me for Christmas around 2005 or so.  I have it around here..somewhere…in the Phantom Zone that is my collection these days.

I really have to get organized this coming year.

Merry Christmas, everyone.

More to follow…