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  1. #1
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    Default Clark/Superman duality

    any good issues or storylines where it plays with the idea of who the real identity is between Clark/Superman? Personally I think Clark is the real character Superman is the disguise

  2. #2
    Father Son Kamehameha < Kuwagaton's Avatar
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    I think there are many possible perspectives, but to me it involves forming two different questions: whether one is a part or merely facade, and which if any identity is dominant. Any situation is quite viable and can play to a creator's strong suits as well as reader expectations. The best and most succinct pov I've seen this week was being able to relate to Clark while aspiring to be Superman in the classic status quo. I'm glad to have no "true" answer.

    I think the best example of Clark as a disguise is All Star Superman. Bendis right now is doing a great job of writing one character with different facets instead of breaking it up by identity or questioning one especially.
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  3. #3
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    DC Comics Presents#50 gave a slight look at the Pre-Crisis set up. The premise of the story is that somehow Superman and Clark were separated into two separate beings and at first neither is aware of it ever being different. We basically see Clark as a fully formed character since he has no powers or other identity to hide. Superman is a little less chummy with his supporting cast since he seems to only remember them from interactions with him as Superman (an without any sympathy that came from Superman also sharing Clark's interactons with them).

    Pre-Crisis also has a story arc that ran from Superman#295-299 where Superman finds that his powers don't work for him as Clark. He believes this is psychosomatic and sets up over two issues a test- all of one issue (I think it was supposed to be a week) he is 100% Clark full time and the next issue he is Superman 100& full time while he tries to decide if he could live the rest of his life with only one identity. Like the issue above we get a bolder Clark since he figures if Clark is either his future or soon to be gone there is no reason to play up his non-Superman personality traits.

    And one more Pre-Crisis is the story where the Earth-2 Superman marries his Lois. The marriage occurs when Superman is removed from the picture by a magic spell which creates a Clark like the one in DC Presents #50. This Clark doesn't remember being Superman and thus doesn't continue his meek act. This more assertive, Superman-without obvious powers is who Lois falls for.

  4. #4
    Fantastic Member OpaqueGiraffe17's Avatar
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    The Clark/Superman dichotomy is a huge part of what makes the character interesting. Unlike some here, I’m not married to any specific interpretation. I don’t think there is a single end all be all way to go about it. And in my mind, that’s a good thing. That means the character is versatile. I’d love to see the multiverse go all out and give us new spins on the idea. Maybe one where it’s more of a Jekyll and Hyde thing. Or maybe one based on the Kill Bill interpretation. As for the main canon, as much crap as heroes in Crisis gets, I rather like the ambiguous angle they went with. Maybe even he isn’t sure which is a charade.
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  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jon Clark View Post
    DC Comics Presents

    And one more Pre-Crisis is the story where the Earth-2 Superman marries his Lois. The marriage occurs when Superman is removed from the picture by a magic spell which creates a Clark like the one in DC Presents #50. This Clark doesn't remember being Superman and thus doesn't continue his meek act. This more assertive, Superman-without obvious powers is who Lois falls for.
    I've always felt that the Earth 2 Superman was closer to the 'Clark Kent' end of the spectrum than his Earth 1 counterpart was.

    He grew up being totally unaware of his alien origins. In fact, I believe that in the Golden Age, Superman was totally unaware that he even arrived on earth in a rocketship, let alone that he's from the planet Krypton - because in the classic Superman # 61, when Superman goes back in time to witness Krypton's destruction and traces the rocketship back to earth, he's surprised by the fact that the Kents found him in a rocket.

    So he basically grew up believing that he's a human being named Clark Kent, who happens to have extraordinary powers. And it is as Clark Kent that he makes the decision to put on a costume and help people as Superman.

    The 'mild-mannered reporter' may be a total act in the Golden Age, but this version of Superman self-identifies as Clark Kent first and foremost. The notion of Kal-El is non-existent at this point.

    So it makes sense that, eventually, this Clark would feel comfortable marrying Lois Lane and living a more normal human life in his civilian identity, rather than treating it as an act or as some kind of 'project'.

  6. #6
    Savior of the Universe Flash Gordon's Avatar
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    They're both the same dude. Different facets. "Clark Kent" who has a desk job and pays taxes, is a facade- but there are real elements that Superman brings to Clark.
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