View Poll Results: Who is the definitive Superman writer?

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  • Jerry Siegal

    5 8.20%
  • Otto Binder

    0 0%
  • Grant Morrison

    22 36.07%
  • Alan Moore

    4 6.56%
  • Mark Waid

    2 3.28%
  • Kurt Busiek

    3 4.92%
  • Eliott S! Maggin

    4 6.56%
  • John Byrne

    4 6.56%
  • Cary Bates

    2 3.28%
  • Mark Millar

    0 0%
  • Dan Jurgens

    7 11.48%
  • Jack Kirby

    1 1.64%
  • Geoff Johns

    2 3.28%
  • Other

    5 8.20%
  • See Results

    0 0%
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  1. #61
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    Quote Originally Posted by Vordan View Post
    In all seriousness I think Byrne is terrible, Jurgens is mediocre, Tomasi was extremely uneven with high highs but low lows, and both Johns and Taylor had a few good ideas but way more toxic ones. Johns has let himself become the nostalgic fanboy he used Prime to mock, and Taylor is the most banal writer I’ve ever seen, his entire schtick is “big wholesome chungas moment for Reddit to cream itself over, followed by someone dying an idiotic death to ‘show the stakes’”. Yet I’m fine with others thinking any of these are the best since preference is subjective.
    I 100% agree with this.

  2. #62
    Ultimate Member SiegePerilous02's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Vordan View Post
    Tell me who your favorite is and I’ll tell you why you’re wrong

    In all seriousness I think Byrne is terrible, Jurgens is mediocre, Tomasi was extremely uneven with high highs but low lows, and both Johns and Taylor had a few good ideas but way more toxic ones. Johns has let himself become the nostalgic fanboy he used Prime to mock, and Taylor is the most banal writer I’ve ever seen, his entire schtick is “big wholesome chungas moment for Reddit to cream itself over, followed by someone dying an idiotic death to ‘show the stakes’”. Yet I’m fine with others thinking any of these are the best since preference is subjective.
    Pretty much in agreement, though I do not have much experience with Jurgens to say if he's really mediocre. I tried the first couple issues of Rebirth Action Comics and they didn't do it for me, but I'm sure his 90s stuff was better. But just a casual glance at it...doesn't seem like it'd be my jam.

    Byrne was definitely bad though. His one good contribution was Maggie Sawyer.

  3. #63
    Father Son Kamehameha < Kuwagaton's Avatar
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    Byrne came away from the experience with a lot of regret. There were few real missteps but it's always sounded like part of it was not being able to control some of the things he wanted to control. Who knows... I do think he was really helped by editorial and maybe needed a bit more, and that Wolfman was a lot more helpful than I've seen him mention.

    Aside from his very good art and unbeatable work rate, Byrne was just a great world builder. He fleshed out Krypton and Metropolis in big, coherent ways and made a number of neat characters that stuck around for quite a while. He restored and strengthened the Fourth World ties. And he also set out using other DC characters from day one, which is why I like him if we're talking about just the character. He made it clear where Superman stood among heroes and why he stood that way. His main idea was combining Reeve and Reeves which is a nice high concept take, but then he also had a good renaissance man/science action hero thing. A little paternal like Reed Richards, which of course backfired going into the late 80s and 90s. Although I don't really think it should have because every other character being a Wolverine or a Batman was and is definitely a problem.
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  4. #64
    Mighty Member Johnny Thunders!'s Avatar
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    Otto Binder has no votes despite Braniac, Kandor, the Legion, and the Imaginary Story concept being credited to him. Tough crowd!

  5. #65
    Father Son Kamehameha < Kuwagaton's Avatar
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    It's tough as he goes so far back. Maybe the massive bulk will help as he comes on right where the golden age omni collections just ended. Though he's pretty decently collected already.

    Morrison has just been kicking that much ass here.
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  6. #66
    Mighty Member Johnny Thunders!'s Avatar
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    Yeah there is just a point of no return with some old comics and creators. Their moment passes!

  7. #67
    Astonishing Member WallyWestFlash's Avatar
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    Dan Jurgens by a long shot for me. He is the definitive Superman writer.

    I would put John Byrne up there too, as well as some other Triangle year Superman writes like Roger Stern.

    Geoff John's has also written some pretty decent Superman arcs.
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  8. #68
    Astonishing Member WallyWestFlash's Avatar
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    I'm surprised Jeph Loeb isnt on the list. He wrote Superman for a big part of the start of the 2000's as well as For all seasons.
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  9. #69
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    I might not be a big fan of what John Byrne did with Superman in the late 1980s, but his SUPERMAN & BATMAN: GENERATIONS (the first two series, not as much the third series) are the best fun I had with comic books at the turn of the century. For me that's the real John Byrne Superman.
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  10. #70
    Extraordinary Member Vordan's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Kuwagaton View Post
    Byrne came away from the experience with a lot of regret. There were few real missteps but it's always sounded like part of it was not being able to control some of the things he wanted to control. Who knows... I do think he was really helped by editorial and maybe needed a bit more, and that Wolfman was a lot more helpful than I've seen him mention.

    Aside from his very good art and unbeatable work rate, Byrne was just a great world builder. He fleshed out Krypton and Metropolis in big, coherent ways and made a number of neat characters that stuck around for quite a while. He restored and strengthened the Fourth World ties. And he also set out using other DC characters from day one, which is why I like him if we're talking about just the character. He made it clear where Superman stood among heroes and why he stood that way. His main idea was combining Reeve and Reeves which is a nice high concept take, but then he also had a good renaissance man/science action hero thing. A little paternal like Reed Richards, which of course backfired going into the late 80s and 90s. Although I don't really think it should have because every other character being a Wolverine or a Batman was and is definitely a problem.
    Yeah while I don’t love a lot of the specific changes Byrne made, the attitude he had of “I’m going to flesh out and build up a lot of the corners of Superman’s world that have never gotten much focus” is something I think the character needs right now. So hopefully someone will come around who will take on that task and I’ll enjoy their creative choices.

  11. #71
    Fantastic Member Jon-El's Avatar
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    I’m pretty much a diehard Bronze Age, pre Crisis, Superman fan. Fortress with the key, Superboy & the Legion, secret identity, mad scientist Luthor, Kryptonite, all that mess. However, I thoroughly enjoyed Byrne’s run on the books. I feared I wouldn’t but ended up looking forward to every issue. I thought the books continued to be strong after Byrne left. The period from 1986 - 1993 is one of my favorites.

  12. #72
    Mighty Member Johnny Thunders!'s Avatar
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    I decided to read my copy of Generations. I have the first 2 series but I’m missing 2/3 of the last chunk.
    The first issue roars by and is called “The Vigilantes.” Byrne draws like Shuster and Bob Kane. I really like the Batman and Captain America team up from this time. The 50s chapter looks like Dick Sprang and aging the heroes in real time is a great idea.

  13. #73
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    Of all the writers on that list I think the only one I think who's done some serious long lasting damage to the character is John Byrne. I've seen the idea put out there that Superman never got in on the 70's/80's deconstructionism but I disagree; John Byrne's Superman IS the deconstructionism of Superman.

    In the 80 years of Superman's existence it feels like Superman is seriously being eyed up for long term replacement either from his cousin or his son and I think the roots of that stems with John Byrne trying to assert that he's really Clark Kent wearing Superman as a mask. It's one of the simplest Man vs Society angles but he didn't really seem to agree with it and instead of just accepting that he threw it in the trash and reversed it. Which I think questioned a lot of people belief that he was really dedicated to the Superhero life. He's thrown so much unnecessary doubt and confusion into the nature of the character and it's at this rate probably never going to recover from it.
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  14. #74

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    Quote Originally Posted by Kuwagaton View Post
    Byrne came away from the experience with a lot of regret. There were few real missteps but it's always sounded like part of it was not being able to control some of the things he wanted to control. Who knows... I do think he was really helped by editorial and maybe needed a bit more, and that Wolfman was a lot more helpful than I've seen him mention.

    Aside from his very good art and unbeatable work rate, Byrne was just a great world builder. He fleshed out Krypton and Metropolis in big, coherent ways and made a number of neat characters that stuck around for quite a while. He restored and strengthened the Fourth World ties. And he also set out using other DC characters from day one, which is why I like him if we're talking about just the character. He made it clear where Superman stood among heroes and why he stood that way. His main idea was combining Reeve and Reeves which is a nice high concept take, but then he also had a good renaissance man/science action hero thing. A little paternal like Reed Richards, which of course backfired going into the late 80s and 90s. Although I don't really think it should have because every other character being a Wolverine or a Batman was and is definitely a problem.
    Speaking as someone who enjoyed Byrne's reboot (although I didn't really know it was a reboot at the time!), I have a hard time pointing the finger at anyone other than Byrne for any missteps that may have happened along the way.

    For the most part, Byrne had almost complete autonomy when it came to Superman. I know in recent times he likes to paint a picture that he was limited in his control over the character and that he was perfectly willing to write Superman without the reboot in place. But this is disputed by others who were around at the time. There were some things he absolutely was not allowed to do, such as use the exact Krypton from Superman: The Movie (which was due to copyright/royalty concerns) and have a pregnant Lara come to Earth only to die of Kryptonite poisoning (which if I remember correctly was because Lara was going to be buried on the Kent Farm in secret and DC felt this was too morbid as well as too deviant from the original mythology). But generally he was left to his own accord, which was part of the reason why Wolfman left a year in - he felt that he was essentially writing Byrne's ideas. Further, part of the reason he took the gig (his first major gig after leaving Marvel) was because he was getting a "clean slate" with the character. Now, MAYBE he would have ultimately accepted doing Superman with or without the reboot. But I have no doubt part of why he took it was because he was able to do it from virtual scratch.

  15. #75

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    Quote Originally Posted by The World View Post
    Of all the writers on that list I think the only one I think who's done some serious long lasting damage to the character is John Byrne. I've seen the idea put out there that Superman never got in on the 70's/80's deconstructionism but I disagree; John Byrne's Superman IS the deconstructionism of Superman.

    In the 80 years of Superman's existence it feels like Superman is seriously being eyed up for long term replacement either from his cousin or his son and I think the roots of that stems with John Byrne trying to assert that he's really Clark Kent wearing Superman as a mask. It's one of the simplest Man vs Society angles but he didn't really seem to agree with it and instead of just accepting that he threw it in the trash and reversed it. Which I think questioned a lot of people belief that he was really dedicated to the Superhero life. He's thrown so much unnecessary doubt and confusion into the nature of the character and it's at this rate probably never going to recover from it.
    Byrne modeled his Clark Kent after George Reeves' interpretation of the character. In those terms, I feel his Clark was perfectly fine and not outside the scope of what had been seen prior.

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