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  1. #31

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    Lot of my favorites are origin stories. Iím a sucker for them and I really think Supermanís got one of the best. But they are by nature hard to argue as essential since there are so many of them. Plus I donít want my list to be half full of origins so Iíll leave them out.

    -Superman TAS
    -Superman II since Iím leaving our origins
    -Death/Funeral/Reign saga
    -For the man who has everything by Alan Moore
    -Red Son
    -All Star Superman
    -Luthor: Man of Steel

  2. #32
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    I've seen a couple people say Superman TAS and that is just a complete and utter cheat.

  3. #33
    Ultimate Member Ascended's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Kuwagaton View Post
    he thing is that he doesn't beat them up, he outsmarts them. Whether you think he's more powerful than them or not, the difference between what he believes and what they believe is the difference between them living and dying. They call him to a duel to kill him on air, so he shows up and takes them out with as little force as possible and shows their leader how it feels to be a victim of their methods without actually using their methods. He believes that dreams save us, so consequently he spares them to show them another way. They got a second chance. Should Superman... not give that when he can?
    I don't want to derail the thread, and I don't want anyone to feel like they need to defend that story. If y'all like it, more power to you.

    But for me, personally, yeah Superman scares the Elite but doesn't kill them, he shows what their methodology feels like from the other end. Generally, that'd be enough to support his code, sure. But Action 775 was all about defending Clark's choices, specifically and with examples, not just as a vague ideal but as an actual socio-political issue with direct implications on people, and it fails to validate Clark's viewpoint. Even worse, despite losing the final fight, the Elite actually win the debate. Clark's unable to prove them wrong, even on one point.

    Every single argument Clark offers, the Elite easily counter and Clark never, ever has a viable reply. He doesn't win the debate. All he does, at best, is show the Elite that being murdered is scarier than being the murderer. And that's not enough to justify his argument.
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  4. #34
    Father Son Kamehameha < Kuwagaton's Avatar
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    Yeah, I get you. It's an old story now that's been discussed millions of times. It's just interesting in the fact that it seems like Must There Be, World Without, What's So Funny, and Camelot Falls are some of the few comics to become really popular by questioning the relevance of Superman.

    Although I think it's a problem answered better by some writers like Morrison in not addressing his relevance but by making his strength more understandable. McCloud is really a highly suspect intelligent guy when it comes to comics, and here's his explanation for the Strength story that never seems to come up nearly enough:
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  5. #35
    Astonishing Member stargazer01's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jcogginsa View Post
    I've seen a couple people say Superman TAS and that is just a complete and utter cheat.
    not really. depends how you see a story to be. Smallville show is a whole young Clark story, for instance. It's all a personal experience.

  6. #36
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    Quote Originally Posted by stargazer01 View Post
    not really. depends how you see a story to be. Smallville show is a whole young Clark story, for instance. It's all a personal experience.
    Still a cheat.

  7. #37
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    I actually thought about including "22 Stories in a Single Bound," SUPERMAN ADVENTURES 41 (March 2000)--by various. But I ruled that out as a cheat, because it's 22 single pages stories--which is 15 stories more than the seven story limit. My own sensibilities couldn't allow me to do that. But to each his own.

    For my list I wanted to stick with comic book stories that are essential to who Superman is as a character. Maybe when I get around to doing an honourable mentions list, it will be there.
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  8. #38
    Astonishing Member manwhohaseverything's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Kuwagaton View Post
    Sorry to truncate such a long post because I know how time consuming it can get. But the point on vengeance is that while yes, he is above it, his mindset is that we can and should all be. Is that wrong or contradictory to what the character generally stands for? He states that his loyalty is to the dream. If you like One Piece as well, I'm sure you were able to understand what it meant for Luffy to stand for his dream against Bellamy even if it made him look completely foolish, and then how beating Bellamy later didn't contradict that. To assume that Superman puts himself above anger doesn't make any sense as a criticism of the story because he's definitely angry with the elite. It's just that the anger isn't what drives him.

    Again, I think it's a story that somehow makes people overthink it. Superman is the church? That's not what this story represents by the author's intention or how it's conventionally read. Some of the questions you bring up are associated ideas but aren't what Kelly asks or answers.
    You might have misunderstood. Luffy never did defend his dream with Bellamy. He orders zorro to not lift a finger, he himself doesn't say much and he allows them to beat him up. He beats bellamy for cricket, not for his ideal. Simply put, bellamy was in his way. Luffy prefers to let his actions and its consequences speak for his ideals. Bellamy's change was due to luffy's going to the sky island and bellamy getting proof of it from golden pillar and the bell ringing. That's the man of action i know and love.Luffy didn't give a damn about what others thought of him, his ideals. Superman is the reverse. He wants people to see him as an example. Hence, the spectacle. If i am right, i will be proven right.People will come to realise on their own. Meanwhile, i am gonna do what i believe is right.As said, there is a difference between a leader and someone with a messiah complex. Here, clark behaves like the latter.

    Luffy will always let people make their own choices and never expects anything. But, if you are in the path of what he thinks is the right thing to do, get ready for a conflict of anytype. "people think my values are outdated. Well, i don't particularly care. their life, their liberty.i am gonna do what i believe in. If its true, then i will be. If i am false,then i am wrong i wil be the one needing correction" .Luffy never says idiotic things like "i am above anger and vengeance". In fact, luffy and his crew all embrace their sins.

    Well, the story comes of as the former in regards to lethal means. Why? It doesn't address lethal force as an outcome at all in anyways. Furthermore, it doesn't do a thing to address the dictatorships. Sure, clark says armed revolution and executions aren't right. He also isn't going to intervene. But, then what? People just suffer and clark does nothing . Nor does it takes into account people like hitman or jason todd. Is throwing these guys in jail really justice? Sure, they might be outlaws. But, so was clark. See, in one piece there are 5 types of justice represented by five admirals to tackle the complicated concept of justice . One of which who has yet to be introduced.

    It was just a general comparison, it isn't literal . For eons, the church set itself as the moral authority for people by imposing himself as their example . Superman himself is seeking to do the same. He doesn't let people have a say in their own ethics. The results of that was the formation of rigid social norms. You could argue it is inevitable since humanity as a whole seeks for guidance in a way, its human nature. But, then the tendency nietzsche was tackling by declaring "god is dead" is precisely this. He wants humanity to be masters of their well.As long a superman is written like that batman or spiderman will always be the better idea. Why? Their power, their will and their responsibility. Not the responsibility of a guardian who flies.

    Edit- i don't want to derail the thread as well. I have a tendency to do that, which i am terribly sorry for and ask apologies for from other posters. I am just never going to like that kind of superman and take him seriously.I like man of action whether he is a farmer, reporter, firefighter . So, let's agree to disagree.Luffy is brought precisely because luffy and clark originally valued the same things - dreams. Luffy hates hand holding leadership. I believe, superman of the old was like that as well.

    It's funny how Superman used to be about a conflict set in the middle like one piece. Where clark is a vigilante who fights both viglantes and authorities. Now, he is basically not a vigilante and talks like about setting an example and being moral authority of people and does so. Superman has been watered down so much that. Many fans and writers themselves think the older books were the simple ones, not the modern ones. When the reverse is the truth.

    Sorry tomasi, there is nothing simple about the goldenage. It might look that way but looks are deceiving. So is one piece.
    Last edited by manwhohaseverything; 04-12-2020 at 12:04 AM.

  9. #39
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    Quote Originally Posted by Kuwagaton View Post
    Yeah, I get you. It's an old story now that's been discussed millions of times. It's just interesting in the fact that it seems like Must There Be, World Without, What's So Funny, and Camelot Falls are some of the few comics to become really popular by questioning the relevance of Superman.
    Eh, everyone loves a good deconstruction. And as Clark's popularity has dropped over the last thirty years, it's given writers plenty of meta-commentary to use.

    I'm not against a deconstruction story or questioning Superman's relevance, I just think 775 misses the mark and ultimately says that Superman is not only wrong, but can't even make a good argument for himself.

    I agree with the idea of making the strength of a character more understandable though. That's usually far more fun than the alternative. And hell, deconstructing the hero has become such a common practice these days it's nice just to get something else.
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  10. #40
    Savior of the Universe Flash Gordon's Avatar
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    Siegel/Shuster Action Comics
    Miracle Monday
    Last Son of Krypton
    For The Man Who Has Everything
    Jack Kirby's Superman's Pal, Jimmy Olsen
    All Star Superman
    Morrison's Action Comics
    Last edited by Flash Gordon; 04-13-2020 at 03:32 PM.

  11. #41
    Astonishing Member Adekis's Avatar
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    I just want to say, it's really starting to bug me that in lit criticism, which originated the term, "deconstruction" is a way of reading any given text to illustrate inconsistencies, whereas in fandom, "deconstruction" almost exclusively means "a story which took a cartoon premise more seriously than it's designed to be taken, and now it's depressing, edgy, and / or thought provoking". I mean, you can do a lit criticism deconstruction of a super-hero comic, but nobody ever means that when they use the term, it seems. Just a stray thought.

    Anyway, my favorite Superman stories are!

    Jerry Siegel and Joe Shuster's Superman The Dailies: 1939-1942 - I actually find Golden Age comic books a little hard to read, but in newspaper strip form, the stories flow like a downhill river! As a direct delivery of the Original Superman in his purest form, this book shaped my fandom a lot when I was a kid, and it's probably the reason why there are so many Golden Age influenced books on this list.

    Grant Morrison's Action Comics # 0-18 - A nigh-perfect blueprint for the Man of Steel, cutting through the navel gazing common to Superman books at the time and leaving in its place a dynamic, Golden Age inspired moral clarity. I wish later Superman had followed this one's lead more!

    Superman: the Man of Steel # 80 - 82 - A version of the Golden Age written for a more modern audience, where Superman fights Nazis. This story is emotional, action-packed, and stands among my favorite Superman stories of all time.

    Miracle Monday - A Bronze Age story that's allowed to go into far more depth than comics often did back then. It's definitely not perfect, but it was important to me to get at least one representative of the Bronze Age onto this list!

    Batman v Superman: Ultimate Edition - This might be contentious, but while Batman v Superman is almost ludicrously uninterested in being "fun," I think it's cathartic instead, which is, you know, another useful kind of thing a story can do. As a movie, it illustrates things about Superman that no other story on this list does. While the moral clarity of the other listed Superman stories is my preferred mode of operation for the Man of Tomorrow, I think the questioning in BvS is also extremely helpful in its own way. I don't generally like the trend of quote-unquote 'deconstructions' of the character, but to me, BvS pulls off what none of that type of story seems to manage in comic form. It never makes Superman look bad as a character, and in the end it soundly reaffirms him, and everything he stands for.

    Supreme: Story of the Year - This isn't even really a Superman story, but it's about Superman. Alan Moore's famous "apology" for all the dark comics he wrote during the eighties is a vibrant love letter to the Silver Age and a cutting critique of overly-edgy books. I have no idea why it hasn't been kept in print this whole time, but anyone who can should read Supreme # 41 - 52. I understand Moore kept up on the title after that point, but that arc is I think really the purest form of what Moore was going for.

    Er, I feel like I should have something from the post-Crisis era - not counting that Golden Age throwback! But the fact is, the thing I like most about that era is Metropolis itself, the city given a character it more usually lacks, and the supporting cast living and memorable than at any other time in Superman's history, in my opinion. Superman himself and the stories are not at their peak during the '86-'99 period there! Which makes it hard to pick a favorite story from that period.

    Not only that, there are other stories from other eras I might consider instead! But I won't. Instead, I'll just sign off, because it's 8:03 in the morning where I am, and I haven't slept all night!
    Last edited by Adekis; 04-13-2020 at 06:03 AM.
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  12. #42
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    The topic is "essential stories." Which I read either of two ways 1) essential to who Superman is as a character or 2) essential to me as a reader (like a desert island story). I guess for some people their Superman is a deconstructed one--but to me that's non-essential. I don't need all the stories that took Superman apart. Maybe on the desert island or in my quarantine room where I have only these seven stories (and not a massive library of collected works, just seven ragged floppies), to keep me company, then I would deconstruct what's in each story to pass the time. I don't need a whole 'nother story to do that for me--I have enough imagination and intelligence to do it on my own.
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  13. #43
    Father Son Kamehameha < Kuwagaton's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Adekis View Post

    Jerry Siegel and Joe Shuster's Superman The Dailies: 1939-1942 - I actually find Golden Age comic books a little hard to read, but in newspaper strip form, the stories flow like a downhill river! As a direct delivery of the Original Superman in his purest form, this book shaped my fandom a lot when I was a kid, and it's probably the reason why there are so many Golden Age influenced books on this list.

    Grant Morrison's Action Comics # 0-18
    Right on. Obviously the whole Morrison run deserves a nod, too, but the newspapers are ignored to the point that's almost criminal to me, haha. I feel like the comics hit their groove after a few years but the newspaper strips always read better and more consistently, and the format is designed to literally pick up a hardcover from any left panel on any page and start getting a full story.

    I just don't necessarily have a favorite story.

    Quote Originally Posted by Jim Kelly View Post
    The topic is "essential stories." Which I read either of two ways 1) essential to who Superman is as a character
    I like your list because it does that and I started seeing how influential and essential go hand in hand as ideas so I can get a better appreciation for a list being made up of just the really famous stories.

    My honorable mentions would be Camelot Falls, Adventures of Superman#599, and Man of Steel#61-62. And of course like three dozen others if I sit here and think.
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  14. #44
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    I envy you guys' ability to remember issue numbers. There have been done-and-one issues I loved but I couldn't tell you which title they were in, much less what issues.
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  15. #45
    Astonishing Member manwhohaseverything's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Kuwagaton View Post
    Right on. Obviously the whole Morrison run deserves a nod, too, but the newspapers are ignored to the point that's almost criminal to me, haha. I feel like the comics hit their groove after a few years but the newspaper strips always read better and more consistently, and the format is designed to literally pick up a hardcover from any left panel on any page and start getting a full story.

    I just don't necessarily have a favorite story.
    I've read somewhere that siegel and shuster were more excited about the newstrip than the comic release. In those days an opportunity in newstrips, were valued more than comics.

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