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Thread: Pete and Lana

  1. #1
    Mighty Member Tzigone's Avatar
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    Default Pete and Lana

    My Superman reading has been limited. I only started reading DC (occasionally read Marvel until Brand New Day, when I dropped it) in 2015. I intentionally went with back issues, for binge-reading ease. Read some newer stuff since. I really enjoyed Tomasi Superman for the family dynamic, but would have liked more of the DP. Liked competent Jimmy of a certain era. But I've only read scattered issues from golden age through present, is my point.

    And I wasn't around when so many things happened, so I don't know how the fans liked or disliked them. I'm doing a build-my-own-reboot for DC. Just to world-build in my head, for fun. But when it comes to minor characters, I don't always have ideas. I usually try to find out what fans think, and get recommendations for what they think is the best to read for those characters and such.

    I have not read any of the issues where Pete and Lana are a couple, because all I heard about them is a very unhealthy dynamic where Lana considering him second-choice and tries to break up Clark and Loisí marriage.

    I have seen occasional other post-Crisis issues with her (and Silver Age issues with him) where they were not an item and each seemed to be good people, but they werenít romantically involved.

    Are there any issues where they have a healthy romantic relationship? Does anyone ship them?

    Does anyone have particular characterizations of the characters they like? I donít like either of them being bad guys or bad people. I deeply dislike when reboots or retcons or revisits-after-long-absences make for heroes (usually minor ones) or hero supporting characters into villains or losers. So many writers seem to think a character can't be interesting without being either immoral or having a deeply rooted psychological issues.

    On the topic of individual characters:

    Pete, obviously, was a very minor character for a very long time. His silver-age self was very one-note. But it was a likable one note. I'm one of those people that really doesn't enjoy reading about characters that I don't like - unless it's a love-to-hate thing.

    Lana, of course, has much more history to her. I read a post somewhere once about how their was no definitive version of an adult Lana Lang. And I think it's true. She was created to sub-in for Lois, and with Lois there, something else needs to be done with her. But not her and Lois fighting over the guy, please. So I'm not really into her being a reporter. I've seen her as such in some bronze age comics. And then she popped up in a '90s Superboy where he met silver-age-Superboy. She was likable there.

    I'm really more interested in developing her teenage self as a non-Lois-expy. I kind of prefer Lana and Pete as people in Clark's teenage years, not adult ones. Sure, they see each other if they are in Smallville at the same time. Go to the same gatherings, maybe get dinner and drinks and catch up. If we're set in the appropriate era, then they're Facebook-friends. Maybe trusted secret-keepers. But not part of Clark's day-to-day adult life.

    Actually, when I thought about it, I couldn't think of any fictional, mixed-sex trios where there was no dating or romantic interest, so I thought that'd be a good idea for those three. Though, of course, they weren't a trio in the old comics at all. Some of the new ones have indicated it, though. But then that might alienate people because Lana is pretty much defined as teenage-love-interest. Even though in the silver age Superboy often seemed to have no interest (mirroring silver age Superman).

  2. #2
    Ultimate Member Digifiend's Avatar
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    Pete hasn't been used recently, and Lana became a superhero, Superwoman, only to have her title derailed by the Superman Reborn event and get depowered when the book was cancelled. Lana's romantic partner nowadays is John Henry Irons, aka Steel.

  3. #3
    Mighty Member Tzigone's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Digifiend View Post
    Pete hasn't been used recently, and Lana became a superhero, Superwoman, only to have her title derailed by the Superman Reborn event and get depowered when the book was cancelled. Lana's romantic partner nowadays is John Henry Irons, aka Steel.
    Thanks for the info. Knowing what she is now is good. But it's still not one version that everyone agrees on or loves, even in the broadstrokes. Is there anything in particular you wish had been done with her in the past or a version you liked best?

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    Astonishing Member superduperman's Avatar
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    To be fair, the whole "she tried to derail their marriage" thing appears to be one writer and he wasn't very popular.
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  5. #5
    Astonishing Member DochaDocha's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by superduperman View Post
    To be fair, the whole "she tried to derail their marriage" thing appears to be one writer and he wasn't very popular.
    Said writer also retconned the origin of Lana's son's name. Lana named her son "Clark" because Superman saved him. Said writer later claimed Lana named the son after Martha's maiden name. Argh.

  6. #6
    Mighty Member Tzigone's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by superduperman View Post
    To be fair, the whole "she tried to derail their marriage" thing appears to be one writer and he wasn't very popular.
    I did know that. There are certain writers for other characters I don't like, either. Unfortunately, unlike Lana, aspects they introduced (that I hated) got picked up on and kept for the characters. The one who used to be my favorite is often-times unrecognizable from what he was in the era I most liked him (Devin Grayson and Nightwing for writer/character pairing I hated).

    I just don't know of any other writer (or more accurately, any other storyline) that wrote Pete and Lana as a couple. Which is why I asked if anyone liked them as a couple. If any other writer wrote them well, I'd be interested in recommendations so I could read about it. It's not an element that moves me, but if there are any fans, put forward your recommendations.

  7. #7
    Father Son Kamehameha < Kuwagaton's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Tzigone View Post
    Thanks for the info. Knowing what she is now is good. But it's still not one version that everyone agrees on or loves, even in the broadstrokes. Is there anything in particular you wish had been done with her in the past or a version you liked best?
    I thought her fight with Clark over Lois, and subsequent move to Metropolis for Lexcorp, were good for her character. Her character arcs were she wasn't an expy were often a little... pathetic? Like she was a character who deserved a lot of sympathy from an audience that had better to do. Her death under Moore was touching but that's what I mean, it was the desparate puppy and not her just being a good character. I liked her as a reporter, and thought she was a great part of the underrated Superman III, but dating Clark in the bronze age wasn't that interesting.

    When she perceives Lois as not being the one for Clark, it takes her from the sad and craving puppy to a more realistic phase. She's the unrequited yes, and yes she did settle, but she's matured and wants better for Clark. Of course, all he can realize is that she once wanted him, so even as best human friends he can't see her as truthful through the harshness towards his wife.

    She had a NICU baby with Pete and I can't really remember what ultimately happened. But before the Austen run with the tension and around the time of Y2K, there was a good Man of Steel issue on their friendship.

    Of the whole supporting cast, Pete is probably the most forgotten. I don't even think he mattered after his plot thread in Washington.
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  8. #8
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    Has Pete been mentioned since Rebirth, or did he go the way of Jonathan Carroll?

  9. #9
    Mighty Member Tzigone's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by seismic-2 View Post
    Has Pete been mentioned since Rebirth, or did he go the way of Jonathan Carroll?
    He showed up with Clark was reviewing his memories in Action Comics 977 (June 2017 publish date). High school or maybe junior high "best friend 1a" to Lana's "best friend 1b."

    It's right after New52 and New Earth Clark merged. I think the issue is set up to show us his new backstory?

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