Clark wonders if it's too late to renegotiate his contract.

DC Retroactive: Superman – The 80’s

includes reprint of Superman #352

DC Comics (October, 2011)

WRITER: Marv Wolfman
ARTIST: Sergio Cariello
LETTERER: Pat Brosseau
COLORIST: Andrew Elder
EDITOR: Ben Abernathy
“DESTINY” CREATORS: Marv Wolfman & Bernie Wrightson

Tired from overwork as Superman, Clark’s attempt at sleep is interrupted by Destiny, who tries to convince the hero to work for a being called “The Dread”. To do so, Destiny shows Superman what is to come in the post-Crisis on Infinite Earths DC Universe. However, the Man of Steel refuses to sell out the human race, and still believes in his fellow heroes. This proves to be the right answer, because “Destiny” is really the Harbinger, and this is a prelude to the Crisis.

What they got right: At the risk of reading too much into this story, it sounds like Wolfman is having his say about the post-Crisis DC Universe, especially the more recent events like Amazons Attack, Blackest Night, and the whole Parallax business with Hal Jordan, and nearly calls out Identity Crisis by name. “Destiny” treats it as a time without hope and clearcut “black and white” heroes and villains. THIS is the Superman I know and love, and seeing him again makes me happy.

What they got wrong: The comic is all talk, no real crimefighting. No Superman being Superman. It’s just a lot of talking and flash forwards. I want to see Superman fighting supervillains. Also, like the 70’s Batman Retroactive, this story takes place AFTER the reprint, the first meeting of Superman and Destiny, which is a bit annoying to follow. Granted, I sort by DC comics for continuity, so this could just be me.

And now the reprint:

If I made a Gloria Estefan reference, would any of you get it? Is it an obscure CD?

Superman #352

DC Comics (October 1980)

WRITER: Marv Wolfman
INKER: Frank Chiaramonte
LETTERER: Shelly leferman
COLORIST: Adrienne Roy
EDITOR: Julius Schwartz

It seems that Superman is doing everything for everybody. That doesn’t sit well with Destiny, who forces Superman to not use his powers, showing him and the people of Metropolis that they can do some things for themselves.

I couldn’t find anything wrong with the comic, outside of the same problem I had with the new story, but I was as annoyed as Superman was up to the end. I have to give Wolfman credit for spinning this story. The only other time I’ve seen this story was an episode of The Powerpuff Girls, but while that was played for laughs (and the people in Townsville are generally morons), this was a straightforward story of why Superman shouldn’t try to solve everyone’s problems. I very much enjoyed it.

I also wish they had reprinted the back-up story, but they didn’t.

Recommendation: This is my Superman, although I didn’t get to see him fighting supervillains (in fact, only a couple of “normal” villains show up in the reprinted story). It’s still worth at least reading.

Hopefully this is remembered in the next reboot.

Tomorrow’s Comic> Godzilla: Gangsters & Goliaths #3

About ShadowWing Tronix

A would be comic writer looking to organize his living space as well as his thoughts. So I have a blog for each goal. :)

2 responses »

  1. Siskoid says:

    I was disappointed because Wolfman cheats! Other Retros have featured issues that could (aside from the art and production) fit into the comics of the era. Not so here. We have a pre-Crisis Superman flashing forward to post-Crisis events Wolfman would never have been privy to at the time. He even muddles the Crisis timeline (at least, it seems that way to me).

    And as far as flashing to all the crossover events, well, those are often the very worst bits of the last 27 years!


  2. […] murderer, two kids wanting to help with their computer skills (I need to get to those), or people coming together to stop mobsters trying to destroy a neighborhood as part of a land grab, all of them inspired by Superman to do […]


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