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Old 02-21-2019, 06:28 AM
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Johnny Unusual Johnny Unusual is offline
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Action Comics #5

Written by Jerry Seigel, Drawn by Joe Shuster

Back to some truly classic Superman. How classic? This one feels, in many ways, like the most generic premise for a classic Superman adventure, minus any gangster: a damn is going to burst and only Superman can save the day. I will say, in its defense, this is the first time we see Superman not battle a villain but dealing with a force of nature. And with Superman much weaker than he would become, this is a bit of a big deal. Also, this is the first time he saves a train with his bare hands, which is an iconic act of heroism for Supes. Let's begin!

I like that font. It's not the more famous version, but I still like it.

We start with the situation that will be central to the story: a damn is on the verge of collapsing and people are leaving town before the worst happens. I'm also glad the comic took the time to show us telegraph lines. That was essential. This feels like a Mark Trail that couldn't be bothered to draw the animals.

The story is supposed to go to reporter Clark Kent, but Lois, feeling envious of Kent's great story, decides to steal it from him by telling him a lie and going off to get the story for herself. And her lie?


Clark seems genuinely excited about this. Like, way too excited. If this is Clark playing the rube again for Lois' benefit, he is leaning too far into it. Lois rushes to Valleyho (tee hee), while Clark heads to the hospital. When he finds out he's been had, he returns to work with an awful surprise.

I really with Superman's line in the second panel was "Now to get that LAST PAYCHECK!" Also, you have been fired. I mean, I guess maybe you can do things freelance, but I feel like the presumption is "If I can get the story, I can get my job back", which seems a bit presumptive. But maybe that's how the job market worked in the late 30's.

Anyway, Superman uses his super speed to catch up with and outrun the train. On his way to Valleyho, he discovers...

And, for the first time, Superman uses his super strength and endurance to rescue a train.


When Lois arrives in town, she's the only one willing to stay for a story when it looks like the damn dam is about to give. Meanwhile, Superman tries to hold it together for as long as he can.

Superman finally lets it go, but as he's about to leave, Superman encounter's Lois getting caught in the flood.

Wow, if I could parse what was going on in panel 42, I bet I'd be impressed by the art. Is that supposed to be the beach? The sky? I have no idea.

Anyway Superman rescues her...

And based on this picture, runs up and down the beach at least once. I'm also not sure what "He catches up with it's beginning..." (like, he returns to it's source, maybe?) but he does outrace the flood, which is good. Lois and grateful and expresses it with a kiss.

I love that I feel like there's a multitude of ways to read "Lady! ------ Please!" Like "yes, please" but weird or "Lady, please, you're embarrassing yourself" or "Lady, please, are you serious?" Nonetheless, even Superman is impressed with Lois' pucker handling skills. The two pitch a little woo (Superman says "I've got to bring you back to safety... where I'll be safe from you" and Lois remembers how Superman used to scare her but now she loves him. Lois asks him not to go, but Superman suggests that they'll meet again.

Back at the office, the tone between the two becomes quite different.

Wow! On both ends. First of all, Clark ends with a total Milhouse move. "I wasn't happy with how you betrayed me-- STILL LIKE ME!" Look, I get it. You want water to be under the bridge. But she also got you fired in an act of selfishness. So maybe at least hash it out a little before "duh, I still likes you, do you like me?"

Lois, meanwhile, is absolutely awful to Clark. Is he acting a little spineless? Sure. Are you understandably upset that your reporting skills are being overlooked for some goober? Fine. But you fucking got him fired and are not the least bit remorseful in potentially ruining a man's livelihood for your own gain. You are being the bad guy, here. It's one thing to scoop Clark. That's the game. But that assignment was specifically given to Clark by a clearly unstable boss. You don't have to accept Clark's "like" but even an inkling of remorse for nearly ruining him would be just great. I mean Lady! -------- Please!

Next time: A soldier in the army gets Superman's powers.

Until next time...

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Old 02-21-2019, 07:44 AM
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Octopus Prime Octopus Prime is online now
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Default A super-man is a clumsy portmanteau

Iím reading Loisí last line in Paul F. Thompkinsí-as-The Smooth Criminals voice.

And you canít stop me!
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