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Old 12-19-2011, 11:27 PM   #80
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Default Re: What was Mark Waid's issues with the 1986 retelling?

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Originally Posted by theMan-Bat View Post
Mark Waid's Superman: Birthright was definitely not truer to the Golden Age Jerry Siegel Superman than John Byrne's The Man of Steel. The Jerry Siegel Golden Age foster father Kent was elderly, described as kind, loving and guided Clark with the foster parents advice to Clark to use his powers to assist humanity. Mark Waid's Jonathan Kent in Superman: Birthright is far younger and blonde (obviously to resemble actor John Schneider on the Smallville TV show), is cold, distant, barely spoke to Clark rather than encouraging and guiding Clark into using his powers to assist humanity. The Jerry Siegel Golden Age Luthor didn't meet Superman until he was an adult and hated him because he powers were a threat. Mark Waid's Lex Luthor in Superman: Birthright is from Smallville and met Clark as a boy and blames Clark for his baldness. Mark Waid's Superman: Birthright was actually closer to the Silver Age, as well as the Smallville TV show, with the House of El on Krypton from the Silver Age, Lex coming from Smallville and having been friends with Clark as in the Silver Age and as on the Smallville TV show, and blaming Clark for his baldness as in the Silver Age, a younger Jonathan and Martha Kent as in the Smallville TV show, etc.
I didn't say that Waid's Superman was identical to the Golden-Age Superman, or even that he was closer to it than Byrne's version. Both of them had a sort of intimidating righteous badass act going on that other versions didn't, so you can't really claim that there was no influence. Waid is more familiar with wide variety of Superman lore than any of us, so it makes sense that he drew his favorite elements from all across it when launching Superman for the 21st century. I could enumerate the many ways in which Byrne digressed from the Golden Age, but I don't think that would really be a fruitful exercise. I will maintain that Waid's characterization is closer to the spirit of the character, but that doesn't just include the Golden Age stuff.
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Originally Posted by theMan-Bat View Post
This Superman in a t-shirt and blue jeans by Grant Morrison and Rags Morales is the opposite of returning to his Golden Age roots, same as the drastically redesigned costume by Jim Lee, same as Luthor being already hairless when Superman first meets him,
All entirely aesthetic changes.
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same as Clark Kent working at a rival newspaper to Lois and Jimmy,
I thought including the Daily Star was a clever tribute to the Golden Age version and the rivalry added an interesting new dynamic, but to each his own.
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same as Lois thinking Superman is a trouble-making menace to Metropolis, Clark Kent's persona being a poor slob with messy hair, wrinkled untucked shirts, no tie, etc.
Clark was designed to look inconspicuous. Since many large corporations have abandoned dress codes for their employees altogether and very few require neatly combed hair or ties, it makes sense that a modern Clark would look a bit slobbish next to his original incarnation.
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And people trusted the Golden Age Jerry Siegel Superman as a hero. In Action Comics #6 (1938) by Jerry Siegel, the newspaper headline for World Herald says "Entire Town Saved by Superman" and Evening News says "Superman Wars on Injustice", etc.
Lots of people trust him in the New 52 continuity and lots of people mistrust him in the Golden Age. The higher level of mistrust leveled at Superman in Morison's run is probably a more realistic representation of how people react to an entity flying (or leaping) around and acting like Superman, especially the Golden Age Superman.

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John Byrne's The Man of Steel and his preceding Superman run is evidence to the contrary. Byrne's influences definitely included the Golden Age Jerry Siegel Superman comics, as I pointed out and gave examples of in my first post on the thread, as well as Richard Donner's Superman: The Movie, the George Reeves Adventures of Superman TV series, the Fleischer Superman cartoons and even some Silver Age Superman comics (Ed Hamilton and Wayne Boring's heavyset business suited con-man Luthor, Bill Finger's Lana Lang, Lori Lemaris, Otto Binder's Lucy Lane, Bizarro, etc.), and Jack Kirby's Superman's Pal Jimmy Olsen and New Gods comics from the Bronze Age with Dan Turpin, Darkseid, etc.
I'm not disputing that, but don't pretend Byrne is the only Post-Crisis writer to take some cues from the Golden Age.


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Neil Gaiman prefers the Silver Age to Bronze Age Lex and his use of the snide "skinny Kingpin" remark also doesn't make it a fact.
Making Lex a generic criminal CEO at the expense of displaying his scientific genius is pretty crappy characterization, and "skinny kingpin" does seem to summarize it succinctly. That's not to say a brilliant mind like Lex's couldn't also amuse itself with running a corporation and it does provide a nice explanation for how he gets the funding for projects that don't seem to have much non-Superman-killing utility (and tend not to be very good at that), but Lex is a scientist and inventor first and foremost. Maggin, Waid, and Morrison all got this right.


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Originally Posted by theMan-Bat View Post
I don't believe that Dan DiDio had Superman rebooted so drastically because of the lawsuits with the Siegel estate over ownership. Dan DiDio has had Wonder Woman rebooted just as drastically without any lawsuits with the Marston estate over ownership. Dan DiDio's orchestrated DC reboots are simply attempts to boost sales. Grant Morrison, Jim Lee and George Perez (all lead by Grant Morrison's vision) are trying desperately to make Superman as modernized, edgy and kewl as they can, disregarding what was always so successful and iconic about Superman since inception, radically changing the personalities and appearances of the iconic Superman characters, to the point to where Lois Lane has a boyfriend and thinks Superman is a trouble-making menace to Metropolis.
The current run on Action Comics is set early on in Superman's career, and it's pretty clear that they're moving toward more established character relationships, unless Lois never having dated anybody before Superman was a major plot point in the classic series that I missed.
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This Jimmy Olsen looks like Justin Bieber. He doesn't even have Jimmy Olsen's freckles.
An aesthetic change, and an admittedly stupid one. I'd blame Morales quicker than I'd blame Morrison.
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This Superman is camera shy. Grant Morrison's Clark Kent worked at a rival newspaper to Lois and Jimmy.
It's taking a different direction with the backstory than previous comics have, but is there really any reason to think that either of those couldn't be true of the early careers of other Clarks and Supermans?
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Grant Morrison's angry Superman tyrannously threatens the citizens of Metropolis to "Treat people 'right' or expect a visit from me." Dictating above Metropolis, creating fear, rather than trust.
That's pretty much the sort of thing Golden Age Superman would do all the time. (See: earlier posts from both of us on this thread). Superman's ultimately about inspiring hope, but he's certainly not above intimidating those who threaten the innocent.

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This Superman wears a t-shirt, blue jeans and later wears body armor instead of the classic iconic costume recognized by generations.
I'm not really gonna defend the new look, but I suspect that was an executive decision at DC, and its effect on the story is pretty minimal. I'm sad to say it, but the era of "lol how come he wear his underwear outside his pants" is over, and the era of "lol how come he finally started wearing his underwear inside his pants" has begun.

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