Saturday, May 16, 2009

Superman vs. a War

Superman and Norvell's detachment is sent to the frontlines.

Superman, it is important to note, is in full military uniform and has nothing identifying him as Superman. How is this different from Clark being in military uniform? Obviously he isn't wearing his glasses, but it just doesn't seem like he's trying very hard to keep his identity a secret anymore and he's only been Superman for like a week.

We are treated to the obvious "Why do you manufacture weapons when they kill people? And now here you are at war, and you don't want to die how ironic!!" exchange between Superman and Norvell that may or may not have been groundbreaking stuff in 1938 but here is just tedious.

The company sets up camp, while Superman dons his costume once more and speeds to the enemy encampment with a singular purpose: to take a photo of the opposing generals who are "hilariously" discussing how impenetrable their lines are.

Having taken the photo Superman commits perhaps his biggest dick move thus far and mails it to The Evening News in Cleveland Ohio. What the HELL, Clark? You were sent to this war by your paper. The Daily Star. In Metropolis. What are you even DOING?

Following this we are shown the beautiful, mysterious, alluring, dangerous, exotic, and never seen again after this page Lola Cortez who, fearing that army officers are on to whatever it is she's up to hides some evidence in Lois' hotel room.

Thus, Lois is framed for espionage and immediately sentenced to meet the firing squad. Awesome! Clark learns of this by listening in on someone else's conversation, as always, and rushes to the scene as Superman! Just as the men fire he leaps between Lois and their bullets shouting what I'm sure you all remember as his most famous of catchphrases:


Superman takes Lois in his arms and leaps the execution wall, responding to the executioners' cry of "You can't do that! It's impossible!" with a smug "Thanks for letting me know!" Hey, he's not so uptight after all.

Carrying a doe-eyed Lois in his arms, Superman stumbles across a torturer in the midst of plying his wicked craft. Allowing no injustice to go unpunished Superman lifts the "torturing devil" above his head and throws him like a javelin where the man no doubt dies somewhere offpanel.

Remembering the point of this story, Superman returns to the camp to check on Norvell and finds his regiment under attack from a villainous pilot. Seriously, this guy is so evil he's shown shouting "Die! Like crawling ants!" as he strafes the encampment. I suppose it makes sense, they had to make him obviously devil-grade evil in the few panels he's alive for (oops, spoiler) in order to make Superman killing him seem justified. And kill him Superman does!

Afterwards Norvell is shown pumping his fists in triumph and shouting "Good! That finishes my nemesis!" What's it gonna take before this guy gets it? No damn plane is gonna kill Superman.

Seeing Superman alive Norvell begs to be allowed to return to the U.S., which Superman allows on the condition that he doesn't make any more weapons. Agreeing, and meaning it, Norvell goes home. That seems a little easy, but I guess the true horrors of war are enough to stop any war monger in their tracks. Which is why we don't have wars anymore.

Superman realizes there is one more thing he must do before his mission is complete, and kidnaps the two armies' commanding officers telling them to fight it out and settle this thing once and for all.

Oh for God's sake

Realizing they have no reason to fight, the two men shake hands and the war ends. Kent goes back to The Daily Star where Editor observes that since he's been gone, Superman seems to have retired. But Clark knows different!

Next time: Superman has never met a mine shaft he didn't like...until now!!!

But seriously, why did he send that photo to Cleveland? What an asshole.

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1 comment:

  1. Hey, Clark's not an asshole! The writers are.