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  1. #331
    Ultimate Member Sacred Knight's Avatar
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    Yeah, we just simply disagree at a base level. I don't think any of that is true, not for Lana. There's no evidence on the page that the connection began because of strength or physical ability on Clark's part and I find that important. Its not like its highly explored, its indeed subtle, but its established that they notice one another in the way that you make eyes at someone across the room, despite not much more than acquaintances. If that subtlety is not enough in a single issue story for the individual to buy in, fair enough, I respect that, but I just don't see it accurate to say its all based on power. If anything the Lana story is based more on who he is in his heart. Which is pretty true for most stories about Lana and Clark growing up. That they get together after he rescues her, I mean hey, its a factor. Someone saves you obviously that's going to matter. Its no different than when Clark famously saves Lois, be it from a helicopter or a space plane or whatever depending on what origin we're looking at, but its simply not a case where she didn't even know he existed before he beat up some guys trying to assault her and he "won" her. It was something she was obviously thankful for and it did add to the attraction, but it wasn't the start, it just snowballed from there.

    But yeah, we're just at a complete stalemate. I mean if you have more to add I certainly will read and digest it, I'm not trying to be a "last word" guy, I just don't think either of us want to keep going in circles, heh.
    Last edited by Sacred Knight; 08-22-2019 at 03:15 PM.
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  2. #332
    Astonishing Member Vordan's Avatar
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    I gotta side with Sacred in regards to Lana. With Lana she clearly liked Clark before seeing his powers, but she also has goals beyond just being Clarkís girlfriend. She wants to expose the bullies and she takes on a very active role there. Sheís no passive prize for Clark to win, she does have agency. Clark saving Lana from the rapists isnít any different to me then Clark saving Lois from falling to her death. Lana isnít interested in Clark because of his powers, sheís clearly drawn by the goodness he exudes.

    But Yodaís right about Millerís writing problems in regards to Lori. Lori does nothing. She has no goals, no real personality, nothing at all to her besides ďClark strong, me bed ClarkĒ. Thatís the relationship between the two, and I donít feel like Iím exaggerating here. Lori is utterly passive, she does nothing to help Clark in any way, she IS just a prize that Clark wins.

    That said thereís something else that should be brought up: Both women have had sexual assault dangled over them. Lana with the bullies, Lori with her father. If Lois or Diana are threatened with rape in issue 3, Iím going to have a problem. Iím already seeing a pattern here that I donít like, but so far havenít found too offensive.
    Last edited by Vordan; 08-22-2019 at 03:44 PM.

  3. #333
    Mighty Member Yoda's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sacred Knight View Post
    Yeah, we just simply disagree at a base level. I don't think any of that is true, not for Lana. There's no evidence on the page that the connection began because of strength or physical ability on Clark's part and I find that important. Its not like its highly explored, its indeed subtle, but its established that they notice one another in the way that you make eyes at someone across the room, despite not much more than acquaintances. If that subtlety is not enough in a single issue story for the individual to buy in, fair enough, I respect that, but I just don't see it accurate to say its all based on power. If anything the Lana story is based more on who he is in his heart. Which is pretty true for most stories about Lana and Clark growing up. That they get together after he rescues her, I mean hey, its a factor. Someone saves you obviously that's going to matter. Its no different than when Clark famously saves Lois, be it from a helicopter or a space plane or whatever depending on what origin we're looking at, but its simply not a case where she didn't even know he existed before he beat up some guys trying to assault her and he "won" her. It was something she was obviously thankful for and it did add to the attraction, but it wasn't the start, it just snowballed from there.

    But yeah, we're just at a complete stalemate. I mean if you have more to add I certainly will read and digest it, I'm not trying to be a "last word" guy, I just don't think either of us want to keep going in circles, heh.
    Ok, I'm going to give it one more shot because the bolded parts kinda distill where we're disagreeing.

    There's the "your guy Kent" scene, which she denies there being anything between them. For argument's sake, even though that scene is couched in "all the amazing things he's doing" - his abilities are clearly what Miller sees as making him special - I'll grant you that hints at interest. Though it's paper thin, focused on what he can do that others can't, not his beliefs or his values which could have been established pretty easily had Miller wanted to there. Lana's retort could have been based on his personality or something. I still see it as rooted in his physical abilities.

    Their first actual interaction in the book from Lana's perspective is the bus scene. She doesn't approach him in any romantic way. There's no hint of flirting, no expression of interest from her beyond that they can work together to get the bullies. At this point we're at about 6 panels 3/4's of the way through a 64 page the book. Then there is 3 pages of the attempted rape, him beating them up, and flying away. They talk on the roof and he literally asks her out before she even hits the shingles. The subplot with the bullies is now done! Problem solved, they just needed a harder beating. Forget the photos, gathering evidence. Let us not speak of truth or justice again. But boom! Lana's head over heals for him. She'll sleep "tight" all right. And they can "bone up" on their reading. From there its speed reading, him saying all she does is talk so good thing he likes the sound of her voice, which come on man. Football stardom, etc. There's nothing in there to establish she loves him for "his heart" because there's nothing to show that in the book. It's only his powers from that point on. That is the story Miller is telling.

    On the page, her falling for him, the actual "romance" and attraction is not based on his heart or values. As presented on the page it is only rooted in his being Superman. Yes, she approached him to team up to go after the bullies. But the only way that leads to their relationship is through him saving her. That is the catalyst. That is the where the Miller's focus is and that is what is given the "screen time." Their romance as presented on the page is only through his strength and powers because that is what Miller values here. That is what he sees as what attracts all these women to Superman.

    And as an aside can we retire the "its one issue, what is he supposed to do" thing? Because we all know that there are plenty of writers that could establish a believable relationship in one issue. Max Landis of all people did a better job of it with Clark and Cheetah and Jeph Loeb did it with Lana in For All Seasons in about as many scenes.
    Last edited by Yoda; 08-22-2019 at 04:05 PM.

  4. #334
    Mighty Member Yoda's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Vordan View Post
    I gotta side with Sacred in regards to Lana. With Lana she clearly liked Clark before seeing his powers, but she also has goals beyond just being Clark’s girlfriend. She wants to expose the bullies and she takes on a very active role there. She’s no passive prize for Clark to win, she does have agency. Clark saving Lana from the rapists isn’t any different to me then Clark saving Lois from falling to her death. Lana isn’t interested in Clark because of his powers, she’s clearly drawn by the goodness he exudes.

    But Yoda’s right about Miller’s writing problems in regards to Lori. Lori does nothing. She has no goals, no real personality, nothing at all to her besides “Clark strong, me bed Clark”. That’s the relationship between the two, and I don’t feel like I’m exaggerating here. Lori is utterly passive, she does nothing to help Clark in any way, she IS just a prize that Clark wins.

    That said there’s something else that should be brought up: Both women have had sexual assault dangled over them. Lana with the bullies, Lori with her father. If Lois or Diana are threatened with rape in issue 3, I’m going to have a problem. I’m already seeing a pattern here that I don’t like, but so far haven’t found too offensive.
    I acknowledge it is a matter of degrees. It’s not a one to one comparison. But the themes are the same. The goals are interesting point, because once she becomes his girlfriend they disappear completely.

    There’s also the girl that the bar fight is over. The townie tries to force her to drink so he can show her how busy they can get grabs her and she begs him to leave her alone.
    Last edited by Yoda; 08-22-2019 at 04:29 PM.

  5. #335
    Astonishing Member DochaDocha's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Vordan View Post
    Clark saving Lana from the rapists isn’t any different to me then Clark saving Lois from falling to her death.
    I largely agree with you, but as the narrator from Law & Order says, "Sexually-based offenses are considered especially heinous." From a narrative standpoint, Miller doesn't agree, and that's one of the many places where he has a disconnect with his fans.

  6. #336
    Mighty Member Yoda's Avatar
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    It's not the actual act of saving that is the issue. It's the use of it in the narrative. He literally asks her out immediately afterwards. Compare it to Birthright, which yes is a longer narrative, but when he saves Lois she hands him her card because she recognizes that he's a massive story. It's not that she can't be attracted to him or flirt with him when she interviews him after that, he's Superman. It's that in YO, the rescue is all in service of her falling in love with him. It is all about power for Miller. The "investigation" ends with that scene. They don't fall for each other because she sees he has a good heart, and together they take down the bullies with truth, the way it's presented is its because he's super strong. Their love grows over a montage of how awesome he is because he has powers. Lois isn't presented that way in the good modern retellings, that is the narrative that tries to undermine her as a superpowered gold digger essentially. Which is probably the direction Miller will take next issue.

  7. #337
    Astonishing Member DochaDocha's Avatar
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    I figure many people think sexual assault is just tasteless to write fiction about other than in rare cases, and is especially tasteless if it's used so that the main (male), non-victim character can react to it. I have a lot to say on this, but it's neither here nor there, so I'll comment no more.

  8. #338
    Astonishing Member Soubhagya's Avatar
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    I have to admit this was way better then i expected. A decent improvement in dialogue which was horrendous in the last issue. The millitary academy part was good. Imo the best part was the underwater action. The fights had an epic feel to it. Even the ones where he was going about rescuing people. Miller in his prime would have made a killer origin. I like a number of these ideas.

    I have read some comments here. And i have to agree with those who say Lori is boring. Lori is usually my second favorite love interest after Lois Lane. I liked the exotic design. But the character was quite bland. Clark's superior was a nice character.

    One note i liked i was when Superman said/thought he has seen his world die. He won't let it happen here when saving the kingdom. I like it. It gives off a vibe of an 'otherwordly' or 'legendary hero' feel to Superman. Even as a baby he was extraordinary. Plus, Krypton is elevated from being just a backstory to be a part of Superman's psyche.

    Finally, is Superman the king of Atlantis now? Unless, i am forgetting that kingdom was called Atlantis where the king had to flee after seeing the might of Superman. He leaves for that in the end. Superman: King of Atlantis. Sweet! I can also imagine that he stays in Atlantis. I am quite sure, i won't like the next issue. This issue had an exotic feel to it. But next issue would be right within Metropolis. I dread the appearance of Lois and Diana too.

  9. #339
    Obsessed & Compelled Bored at 3:00AM's Avatar
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    I must admit I have been pleasantly surprised by this story. It's not necessarily how I view Superman, but this is a fascinating new approach to Clark's early years. I think the lion's share of the credit has to go to Romita, though. From what I've gathered, he's doing the vast majority of the plotting, then doing the art for the entire thing, with Miller simply adding his often cringe-worthy dialogue on top.

    I was initially wary of this whole idea, but the results have been pretty interesting thus far.

  10. #340
    Mighty Member Adekis's Avatar
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    I've really been liking this series a lot more than I thought. I still think that putting Clark in Navy SEAL training is a kind of stupid idea, because, well, if he wasn't honorably discharged when he was, he'd have to be dishonorably discharged (and quite possibly jailed) later, or else become something entirely antithetical to what Superman is. Which hey, fair point to Miller and Romita, they never really seem to entertain that possibility, but again, the military thing just seems to work out a little too conveniently for Clark for my tastes considering what a commitment it would be, if he didn't get kicked out so early.

    Then there's Lori Lemaris. Lori, Lori, Lori.

    Listen. I love Lori for one reason and one reason specifically: my fiancee is disabled. She uses a wheelchair. She loves going swimming. And like Clark Kent and Lori, we met in college. To me, the wheelchair, college, and the traditional mermaid imagery, are the three substantial markers of Lori Lemaris. This story had none of them. I still got a kick out of seeing her, for sure. But like, making her this Greek Mythological figure who's a daughter of Poseidon who wants to avoid being his incest bride, that's unusual. It's effective within the bounds of this story specifically, but it's weird. I also value the times when Lori fits into the Aquaman mythos, and there is one references to Uniting the Seven Nations of Atlantis or whatever, but that's pretty thin on the ground, frankly.

    These are nitpicks. Within its own standalone framework, I like this story a lot. It just doesn't satisfy my own criteria for what I'd want to see in a Lori story, given how much I like her.

    And again:

    It was our darkest hour. All hope was lost. And LO! a beacon of LIGHT shone through! It was a surface man... a SUPERMAN,
    MIGHTY beyond all words! Words... the hero's mind spoke to us... with a voice STRONG and SURE...
    "I have SEEN a world destroyed," he boomed, "I will not bear witness to such a thing again. Join me now... In the RISING!"
    This is absolutely legendary, like something out of an ancient prose epic. Often gravitas is attempted in comic books, but so often it comes across, like a lot of Stan Lee's work, as being less the words of an epic poet than a carnival barker. And I don't mean to disparage Lee by any means of course! He's a legend in the industry! But there's always something of a wink at the camera in his overwrought descriptions. Here though, Frank Miller delivers gravitas like the hammer of God, making Superman come across as a truly mythic figure, and I am here for it, 100%!
    "You know the deal, Metropolis. Treat people right or expect a visit from me."

  11. #341
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    Quote Originally Posted by Vordan View Post
    I gotta side with Sacred in regards to Lana. With Lana she clearly liked Clark before seeing his powers, but she also has goals beyond just being Clark’s girlfriend. She wants to expose the bullies and she takes on a very active role there. She’s no passive prize for Clark to win, she does have agency. Clark saving Lana from the rapists isn’t any different to me then Clark saving Lois from falling to her death. Lana isn’t interested in Clark because of his powers, she’s clearly drawn by the goodness he exudes.
    .
    I keep seeing people try to make this comparison to Superman saving Lois and it’s just a completely inappropriate comparison for a multitude of reasons.

    Lois Lane is not a passive character. Despite being saved a lot by Superman, she is quite literally a subversion of the damsel in distress trope because his act of saving her is almost always preceded by her taking ACTION and being part of the action in a very substantive way. She is not the passive princess waiting in the tower for the Prince to come. She’s already fighting the dragon when Superman shows up. There is literally no instance in 80 years where Lois is a passive figure. And this is SUPER important.

    Miller is not writing Lana as a woman of action. She’s a passive figure upon which action happens around and she’s treated as an object to violate as a way to show Clark’s powers. But that’s where the characterization stops.

    Lois Lane being an active participant/aggressor and being saved by Superman because she was so brave is not remotely the same thing as poor Lana being treated as an object subjected to sexual Assault from multiple men. I really need people to understand that these two things are not remotely the same message because the comparison is honestly alarming to me.

  12. #342
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    Quote Originally Posted by Nelliebly View Post
    I keep seeing people try to make this comparison to Superman saving Lois and it’s just a completely inappropriate comparison for a multitude of reasons.

    Lois Lane is not a passive character. Despite being saved a lot by Superman, she is quite literally a subversion of the damsel in distress trope because his act of saving her is almost always preceded by her taking ACTION and being part of the action in a very substantive way. She is not the passive princess waiting in the tower for the Prince to come. She’s already fighting the dragon when Superman shows up. There is literally no instance in 80 years where Lois is a passive figure. And this is SUPER important.

    Miller is not writing Lana as a woman of action. She’s a passive figure upon which action happens around and she’s treated as an object to violate as a way to show Clark’s powers. But that’s where the characterization stops.

    Lois Lane being an active participant/aggressor and being saved by Superman because she was so brave is not remotely the same thing as poor Lana being treated as an object subjected to sexual Assault from multiple men. I really need people to understand that these two things are not remotely the same message because the comparison is honestly alarming to me.
    Nope.

    Lana got in over her head by investigating and getting proof of the bullies actions. Sounds like the type of story Lois is built on. The difference is that most of the crooks Lois would encounter weren't depicted as the type to brutalize women. Kill them sure, but between the Comic Code and the writing style of earlier ages you weren't going to have Lois beaten badly or sexually assaulted in any story. I'm sure if Miller or Alan Moore rewrote a lot of Lois stories from the 1940's or post 1970 for a "modern" audience there are plenty of places Lois might have been in a situation like Lana's without breaking the logic of the story (IOW without the rape or beating being a gratuitous scene obviously added despite not fitting the situation).

  13. #343
    Father Son Kamehameha < Kuwagaton's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Yoda View Post
    I get what you are saying. But in this case, beyond the fact that I should have known better, I think my expectations were in line with how this was marketed for the last year plus. They have pushed it as a “definitive” origin for Superman unconnected to The Dark Knight Returns in the vein of Batman Year One. It was publicized by Frank Miller himself and others as a look at Superman’s early life through his relationships with three women. Namely it was supposed to hit three points in his life through the lens of these relationships. Not just be another origin story. They actually went out of the way to distance it from Miller’s past work for a very very long time because of his reputation and books like Holy Terror. He practically went on an apology tour trying to promote this at the Superman 80th anniversary panels. More generally, the Black Label is supposed to be evergreen collections that are marketed as literature basically.

    It wasn’t until like a week or two before #1 dropped that they changed that tune and now it’s the origin of DKR’s Superman. Mind you, it’s still being solicited as a “definitive” origin of Superman in a line of evergreen books. So my expectations were more or less in line with what I was being sold. Expecting something that isn’t regressive or outright offensive in that context isn’t asking to much I don’t think. This won’t become a definitive origin obviously. It’s likely to be forgotten in a few years like Miller’s other modern work, this issue ensured that more or less, but I don’t think coming into this expecting more given how it was marketed is out of line. A little naive and overly optimistic, maybe. But I was only buying what they sold me.

    Second, with the way comics are ordered you order these books months in advance. Compounding that, where I get my books I get a solid discount to prepay when I order. So I bought these books months before the first one even went on sale. I don’t have option to vote with my wallet for these two issues. It's not a movie or a television show where the sales are more in line with the quality of the content. Stores and consumers ordered these books months in advance, so saying #1 sold well based on the orders so it must not be bad is a very weak argument. Those sales were made in like March before we saw anything and before they switched up the marketing.

    And finally, how is the fact that this is a character from the 30’s relevant to this book or expectations of Superman comics in general? Modernizing the content and stories is how we got here in the first place. Miller isn’t writing a 1930’s Superman story. He’s writing a “definitive” origin. Having it steeped in sexism and racism opens it to criticism. And Plenty of 80’s creators are capable of “blowing the doors off” older characters. That’s generally how this whole medium evolves. That type of effort is often celebrated and rewarded and it’s particularly warranted where said character, like Lori, is marketed as being central to the narrative. Neil Gaiman continues to evolve and has a successful career in comics and tv because he does. His older and newer work is still being adapted. Grant Morrison did exactly that with Action Comics and All Star Superman. And Morrison didn’t retain the casual sexism and racism that the Golden and Silver Age books he was basing his stories on included.
    I remember the first announcements back in summer 2017 and I'm sure everything about the approach to selling this has morphed and molded along the way. When it started missing the earliest proposed dates I figured it was Doomsday Clock shenanigans or decreased priority. Either way for me that took off the edge of relevance.

    Gaiman and Morrison... I think if you took 100 credited writers from 1982 to 1987, Miller's peak from the looks of it, almost none of them compete with Gaiman or Morrison. I don't hold the best in the business against others really. Almost no one can do those things on their best day so I don't see a lack of trying. Tbh I don't think Born Again, Year One, or Elektra would be what they are without those game changing (and two of my very favorite) artists.

    Also, I think the medium evolves through fresh blood. Vita Ayala, Mags Visaggio, GL Yang, and more. There are a number of breakout artists too, no disrespect to JRJR either.

    Quote Originally Posted by Adekis View Post

    This is absolutely legendary, like something out of an ancient prose epic. Often gravitas is attempted in comic books, but so often it comes across, like a lot of Stan Lee's work, as being less the words of an epic poet than a carnival barker. And I don't mean to disparage Lee by any means of course! He's a legend in the industry! But there's always something of a wink at the camera in his overwrought descriptions. Here though, Frank Miller delivers gravitas like the hammer of God, making Superman come across as a truly mythic figure, and I am here for it, 100%!
    Yeah, it's like he shifts to that gear from first every once in a while still, where dialogue goes.
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  14. #344
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jon Clark View Post
    Nope.

    Lana got in over her head by investigating and getting proof of the bullies actions. Sounds like the type of story Lois is built on. The difference is that most of the crooks Lois would encounter weren't depicted as the type to brutalize women. Kill them sure, but between the Comic Code and the writing style of earlier ages you weren't going to have Lois beaten badly or sexually assaulted in any story. I'm sure if Miller or Alan Moore rewrote a lot of Lois stories from the 1940's or post 1970 for a "modern" audience there are plenty of places Lois might have been in a situation like Lana's without breaking the logic of the story (IOW without the rape or beating being a gratuitous scene obviously added despite not fitting the situation).
    She’s a passive participant as the scene plays out. Period. The fact that Miller weakly tried to graph some of Lois’s traits on her (thinly and lazily I might add) does not character building make. She’s not a fully realized character.

    And just for the record, there absolutely ::was:: the implication of sexual assault as a threat in plenty of those early stories with Lois. And there is an AU (Superman: Kal) where she’s brutally raped and beaten while she screams for Superman and he can’t get to her. It’s an AU you rarely hear about because it’s ::that:: disgusting and reviled.

    The idea that sexual assault is now needed to make these stories palatable is offensive and ludicrous. Attempted rape is not character building. Attempted rape does not belong in a Superman comic. The “real world” excuse here and the justification that the only reason we didn’t see Lois raped years ago was because it was against the “comics code” doesn’t change that the code exists for a REASON. Rape is not some modern, edgy toy that you just throw out there to play with in order to show what a hero Superman is. Rape is not some “modern” tool that we should just accept in our stories as a short cut to show how vile some men are and I’m honestly disgusted that people seem to think it is.

    And, frankly, the fact that Lana didn’t even warrant a mention in the second issue makes her non character even worse.

  15. #345
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    I think its amusing that alot of peoples response to the bad writing is "Well your just 'woke' so meh"

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