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  1. #1576
    Astonishing Member phantom1592's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Tzigone View Post
    Probably doesn't hurt that I don't like those. I mean, I like Max teaching Bart, but don't care about his past. Am firmly in the camp of wanting the JSA on another earth and very much prefer silver/bronze age Hawks.
    Well, I prefer the Earth2 team ups as well, with all the JSA in their near-prime as 'different' versions of the classic JLA... but I don't think we'll ever see that again. But even without the JSA/Earth 2... there are plenty of 'past heroes' that prove Superman wasn't 'the first'.


    I've always been a big fan of Superboy… and honestly I think he's integral to Clark Kent. One thing Smallville I think demonstrates is The only way the 'Clark Kent' disguise works is if he's using it since he was a kid. He needs to be wearing the glasses as a kid... People shouldn't even be able to picture a Clark kent without glasses. he needs to be disappearing when things get dangerous... The idea that wallflower Clark could actually be Superman should be ridiculous to anyone who knows him... If people can see a picture of Superman and immediately think of high school star quarterback who was faster and stronger than normal people and look at a yearbook with the exact same face... it just falls apart for me. I need young clark using that disguise long before High School ever starts.

  2. #1577
    Incredible Member OpaqueGiraffe17's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by phantom1592 View Post
    I have zero attachment to Superman being the 'first superhero'. He can be the best and most powerful and most inspiring... but I've seen way too many stories with the JSA or flashbacks to ancient Egypt and stuff and the heroes that Hawkman has been.... Max Mercury's from the past...

    Clinging to the 'meta' concept of Superman being first, tosses too many other concepts that I love.
    Totally agree. I realized how much I hated that overrated detail back when Superman Unchained came out, and I saw a bunch of complaints about how it revealed that Wraith was around before Superman. I just realized how restricting that detail is for the dc universe.
    And it. Adds. Nothing.
    It doesn’t make Superman a better character. Him being first isn’t what makes him special. All it does is make the dc universe more limited and less interesting.

  3. #1578
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    Quote Originally Posted by phantom1592 View Post
    Well, I prefer the Earth2 team ups as well, with all the JSA in their near-prime as 'different' versions of the classic JLA... but I don't think we'll ever see that again. But even without the JSA/Earth 2... there are plenty of 'past heroes' that prove Superman wasn't 'the first'.


    I've always been a big fan of SuperboyÂ… and honestly I think he's integral to Clark Kent. One thing Smallville I think demonstrates is The only way the 'Clark Kent' disguise works is if he's using it since he was a kid. He needs to be wearing the glasses as a kid... People shouldn't even be able to picture a Clark kent without glasses. he needs to be disappearing when things get dangerous... The idea that wallflower Clark could actually be Superman should be ridiculous to anyone who knows him... If people can see a picture of Superman and immediately think of high school star quarterback who was faster and stronger than normal people and look at a yearbook with the exact same face... it just falls apart for me. I need young clark using that disguise long before High School ever starts.
    The disguise would fall apart the minute someone notices the connection between Clark, Smallville and Superboy.

    Never mind Super Baby would be impossible to cover up.

  4. #1579
    Uncanny King-Kamalu lemonpeace's Avatar
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    This is probably not an especially controversial "hot take", and i may have already said this before (now that i'm thinking about it) but, I think western comic book storytelling culture could learn a lot from the storytelling culture of manga; particularly the importance and the art of endings. in keeping with the theme of this thread tho, let me get specific to make it a little spicier: One Piece is a perfect example of how much of a disservice comic storytelling culture does it's characters by not challenging their creatives (and by extension their readers) with an endgame. and spicier still, just because you're characters have been in circulation in perpetuity does not make them good, it may make it easier to consider them iconic, but it does not make them in and of themselves good characters. overall, not that spicy but it something i was thinking about, and I wanted to get the thought off.
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  5. #1580
    Astonishing Member jetengine's Avatar
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    Making clark literally the first is pointless because unless you ruthlessly ensure nothing contradicts it you'll always get a writer who countermands it out of narrative reasoning or favouritism. At least in the Golden Age group you can put any OC and just say "They werent super popular"

  6. #1581
    Astonishing Member phantom1592's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Agent Z View Post
    The disguise would fall apart the minute someone notices the connection between Clark, Smallville and Superboy.

    Never mind Super Baby would be impossible to cover up.
    Not really, I wasn't very sociable in school, but out of my small group I personally know 2-3 people who moved to New York and 2 that moved to Chicago. Those big metropolis' tend to draw a lot of people. No reason to automatically assume that there is a connection.

  7. #1582
    Astonishing Member phantom1592's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by jetengine View Post
    Making clark literally the first is pointless because unless you ruthlessly ensure nothing contradicts it you'll always get a writer who countermands it out of narrative reasoning or favouritism. At least in the Golden Age group you can put any OC and just say "They werent super popular"
    Reminds me of the X-Men. I remember that originally they pushed Charles Xavier as one of the very first mutants. His father worked on atomic bombs or something and since Hiroshima and the atomic tests... mutants were starting to appear. Hence the whole 'children of the Atom' concept. Characters like Apocalypse and Wolverine however KIND of screw over that concept completely. You can't proclaim something as the first... then have stuff that happened before them.

  8. #1583
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    Quote Originally Posted by phantom1592 View Post
    Not really, I wasn't very sociable in school, but out of my small group I personally know 2-3 people who moved to New York and 2 that moved to Chicago. Those big metropolis' tend to draw a lot of people. No reason to automatically assume that there is a connection.
    We are also talking about a guy who looks like Superman, has been said to be friends with Superman and is fairly well known due to being an award-winning journalist. Some fans have even suggested that Perry does know Clark is Superman. There are just too many holes in the secret identity for it to really work.

  9. #1584
    Astonishing Member jetengine's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by phantom1592 View Post
    Reminds me of the X-Men. I remember that originally they pushed Charles Xavier as one of the very first mutants. His father worked on atomic bombs or something and since Hiroshima and the atomic tests... mutants were starting to appear. Hence the whole 'children of the Atom' concept. Characters like Apocalypse and Wolverine however KIND of screw over that concept completely. You can't proclaim something as the first... then have stuff that happened before them.
    Exactly. Hell Apocalypse has a bunch of Victorian mutants ffs. Thats barely a 100 years away from Charles debut.

  10. #1585
    Incredible Member docmidnite's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by jetengine View Post
    Making clark literally the first is pointless because unless you ruthlessly ensure nothing contradicts it you'll always get a writer who countermands it out of narrative reasoning or favouritism. At least in the Golden Age group you can put any OC and just say "They werent super popular"
    I don’t think he should literally be the first, unless they put him back in 1939, but if they went by “first of his century/era” it could work.

    For example...

    Black/Teth Adam, first hero of Old Kingdom Egypt, Nabu/Dr. Fate, first hero of Middle Kingdom Egypt, Prince Khafu/Hawkman, first hero of New Kingdom Egypt, etc.

  11. #1586

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    Quote Originally Posted by jetengine View Post
    Exactly. Hell Apocalypse has a bunch of Victorian mutants ffs. Thats barely a 100 years away from Charles debut.
    They have far expanded that now too. Selene > Apocalypse > original Four Horseman > Exodus > Logan > Mystique > Destiny > Magneto > Charles

    Destiny is literally the only one who was getting pretty old before she died. Magneto had his lifespan reset at least twice. Mystique's shapechanging makes her near immortal.

    There are other mutants that predate Charles too, I just couldn't remember them all.

    ---------------------------------------------------------------

    But I was just pointing out that these kinds of things accumulate over time as more writers add more historical characters to the timeline or make adjustments. I hope DC isn't going to make the timeline that rigid, it kind of stifles creativity a bit!
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  12. #1587
    Moderator Frontier's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Agent Z View Post
    We are also talking about a guy who looks like Superman, has been said to be friends with Superman and is fairly well known due to being an award-winning journalist. Some fans have even suggested that Perry does know Clark is Superman. There are just too many holes in the secret identity for it to really work.
    The physical resemblance isn't necesarilly always remarked upon in-universe. Some versions of Clark Kent present a very different physicality compared to Superman.

  13. #1588
    Ultimate Member Ascended's Avatar
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    The secret identity holds up fine until you bring in the idea of facial recognition tech.

    Because we know the secret, its easy to think that other people in-universe would jump on it. Oh, that Kent guy is a white dude with dark hair, and he works for the Planet and has written about Superman! Obviously they're the same guy even though there's probably dozens of dark haired white guys at the Planet, not to mention the millions in Metropolis alone! No, that's not what people are going to think. Nerdy, introverted, "forget he's in the room with you" Clark Kent is far too shy and quiet and awkward to have a double life, much less secretly be the greatest hero who ever lived.

    And no one is thinking that Superman has a secret identity in the first place. No one puts it together because no one is looking.

    Perry would figure it out, because he's Perry. Lois *did* figure it out, very early on, but could never prove it. Jimmy is....well he's Jimmy, stuff goes over his head all the time. Nobody else really interacts with both Clark and Superman enough to put it together. Lex, depending on the history and version, might if not for his ego. His own self-image prevents him from accepting that a god among men would live a life like Clark Kent's. Lex knows, deep down, but he can't rationalize it.

    Facial recog could be a problem, but the answer to that is a very simple "Kryptonian computer virus skews the data."

    I spent more than ten years working in a place where celebrities and world leaders would visit. And without the makeup, lighting, and pomp and circumstance you expect to surround them, they're pretty hard to notice. For Clark, who goes a lot further to protect his identity than a baseball cap and sunglasses and changes every aspect of his mannerisms, voice, speech patterns, etc., I can totally believe he could fool the world.

    Some folk say "all it would take is one person figuring it out." No. One person figuring it out is a lunatic on the internet throwing around stupid conspiracy theories. We debunk stuff that is far more proven, with far more people supporting it (climate change); one person saying Superman is Clark is just gonna get laughed out of the room.
    Last edited by Ascended; 01-11-2020 at 01:54 PM.
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  14. #1589
    Extraordinary Member SiegePerilous02's Avatar
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    I also don't think Superman having a secret life as a normal civilian is even public knowledge, is it? I think everyone just assumed he lived up at the Fortress when he isn't actively adventuring. People don't notice Clark Kent or think he might be Superman because there is no reason for them to think he'd work as a journalist.

    He's otherwise just a very good actor to fool everyone else. Even goddamn Batman couldn't see it, they had to catch each other changing clothes to figure it out. In real life the disguise wouldn't last nearly as long, especially around people he interacts with as both identities, but this isn't real life.

  15. #1590
    Astonishing Member phantom1592's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ascended View Post
    Perry would figure it out, because he's Perry. Lois *did* figure it out, very early on, but could never prove it. Jimmy is....well he's Jimmy, stuff goes over his head all the time. Nobody else really interacts with both Clark and Superman enough to put it together. Lex, depending on the history and version, might if not for his ego. His own self-image prevents him from accepting that a god among men would live a life like Clark Kent's. Lex knows, deep down, but he can't rationalize it.

    I don't like Perry knowing. I don't see why he would. He's not a world famous investigative reporter... He's the editor in chief. He's a BUSY MAN. He's not out chasing clues and running down leads... he's fact checking and layout checking and assigning a dozen different reporters stories and juggling the advertisers and doing everything he can to keep the paper in business (admittedly a job that gets HARDER as time goes by.) He's basically the same job as J Jonah Jameson... and nobody assumes that he's 'too good' not to realize Peter was Spider-man…

    Dude's got too many plates spinning in the air to get a hand-wave 'of course he'd know...' I like to think the disguise is better than that. If Jimmy doesn't figure it out, despite having a good relationship with both.... Perry certainly shouldn't who rarely spends any time with Superman and is too distracted to probably look Clark in the eyes while on two separate phone calls.


    Quote Originally Posted by Ascended View Post
    Facial recog could be a problem, but the answer to that is a very simple "Kryptonian computer virus skews the data."

    I spent more than ten years working in a place where celebrities and world leaders would visit. And without the makeup, lighting, and pomp and circumstance you expect to surround them, they're pretty hard to notice. For Clark, who goes a lot further to protect his identity than a baseball cap and sunglasses and changes every aspect of his mannerisms, voice, speech patterns, etc., I can totally believe he could fool the world.

    Some folk say "all it would take is one person figuring it out." No. One person figuring it out is a lunatic on the internet throwing around stupid conspiracy theories. We debunk stuff that is far more proven, with far more people supporting it (climate change); one person saying Superman is Clark is just gonna get laughed out of the room.
    I still love the story where henry Cavill was hanging out around grand Central Station in NY wearing an actual Superman t-shirt and nobody recognized him because he combed his hair different and wore glasses. That's just life.

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