23 March 2012

Superman: A Physical Marvel

Hes not Human!----Thank Heaven he's apparently on the side of law and order! - Governor.

In the first Superman Comic created by Jerome Siegel and Joe Shuster, Superman's life is briefly gone over and we see his first triumphs over evil. As a baby Superman was sent down from a distant planet to Earth, his parents died when the other planet was destroyed due to old age. He was raised by caretakers they were astonished with his strength. Although his strength wasn't the only super power he had, he could also leap very far distances, run faster than the speed of light, and could fly. As a teenager, when Superman started to mature, he realized all of his super powers. Superman's first triumph takes place with him saving a women from being electrocuted. He has to break into the Governor's room and show him a signed confession from the criminals who are tied up in the front yard. Superman gets old enough to land a job as a reporter, but of course he can't be Superman, he has a secret identity as Clark Kent. His boss asks Clark to report on Superman any chance he gets, of course he will be able to. Clark Kent asks Lois Lane out on a date, she finally decides to give him a chance and says yes. Once the two are on their date, Butch tries to cut in between the two, Clark doesn't cut in and Lois has to dismiss Butch by herself. Lois leaves the date running away from Clark, who according to Lois is spineless. The taxi cab she got into was then ran into a ditch by Butch and his friends, Superman then has to rescue Lois. Superman deals with Butch and his friends and takes Lois lane to the city. Clark is sent to Washington D.C and finds out about a scandal between a senator and a lobbyist. Later when the senator and lobbyist meet, Superman shows up and takes care of the lying lobbyist. The comic then ends with to be continued.. In the comic, Superman was shot and stabbed, but both didn't affect him because of his tough skin. Which is why he is believed to be inhuman.
Emberto Eco's, "The Myth of Superman" best relates to this comic. In "The Myth of Superman", Eco discusses how the creators have the problem of straddling the line between mythical hero and literary hero. Superman seems to be mythical because he is seen as "inhuman". When he is stabbed and shot and doesn't die it gives the effect that he will not die due to any humanly thing. Also, he starts off like other mythical heroes, he is a child and then he is an adult and we don't get much detail after that. The problem with the literary part is that Clark Kent has feelings for Lois Lane which is a human trait. Also, if Superman was a myth this one comic would have went over his whole story and their wouldn't be more stories published later. 

I can now say that Superman is the first comic book I've ever read and it wasn't half bad. The story was entertaining and even though i knew that he wasn't going to die, its interesting to think the people around him still can. 

Typicial Batman!

     Bruce Wayne is looked at as a simple man living a boring and moderate life. Meanwhile people don't he is the one behind the mask of Batman. Batman the hero that always conquers good and comes to the rescue and saves the day. In this first issue Batman comes into the picture on a mission to solve a murder, and ends up stopping the bad guys with a "sock".
     Batman is informed that there was killing of Mr. Lambert, with a knife in his back and his safe broken in too and took a piece of paper. Then next on the list was Steven Crane which was killed and the criminal broke into his safe and stole a piece of paper too. But what he did not know was Batman was waiting for him on top of the roof. The criminal and his accomplice were stopped in there tracks. Batman killed them and took the paper they stole out of the safe. After Batman reads the paper, he takes off to his next destination Mr. Rogers house. By the time Batman got there he found Rogers in a gas chamber and breaks in and rescues rogers before it is to late. Then the true villain came out, the one who has been behind this whole plan. It is Stryker!
     Batman figured out Stryker was behind this all because the paper he took from the criminal was a contract between Lambert, Crane, and Rogers which was a business contract. Stryker wanted to kill all his other business partners so that way he can make more money and have it all. Of course Batman saves the day again.
      I thought this article was good and it is always nice to have the ending of good conquering evil. I just feel like Batman is so predictable and always knows what to do next. He can beat up anyone and seems to never be defeated. Guess I just felt like it was another typical Batman mission.

22 March 2012

Superman the Unquestionable Hero

Superman began with the story of a world doomed for destruction. A world that was inhabited by super human beings. A desperate father in a last attempt to save his son's life shipped his baby off of the planet. As luck would have it, Superman landed on Earth and was discovered. It took no time at all for Superman to discover that he had super powers, and an even shorter time after that to decide that he would use them for good. Anybody that encountered Superman out of uniform would never have the wildest guess that he was a super hero. He took on the role of a shy, stuttering reporter named Clark Kent. Clark Kent struggles to even snag a date with his co-worker Lois Lane. When he finally manages to ask her out he ends up running her off later in their date with his cowardliness. Unbeknownst to Lois, he saves her from the man that took her from him in the first place. What Clark Kent lacks, Superman makes up for. Superman fights off multiple bad men in this very first comic by doing what no other normal man would be able to do. He smashes through doors, both wooden and metal, his skin breaks a knife, and he scares a man half to death by jumping from building to building with him in tow. Nobody questions Superman as a hero.
In Scott McCloud's book Reinventing Comics, he mentions that in order to make people look at comics in a more positive way many things must be changed about the way comics are made. One of these that are mentioned is gender balance. I think by Superman, emphasis on man, just having that name hurts the chances of women super heroes being able to make it. Especially when the comics are written with women always having to be saved from something.

He Da Man!!!!

This Classic Superman comic starts out with Superman's planet being destroyed, or blown up and the only way to save Superman is to have his parents send him to planet Earth. Somebody finds him and sends him to an orphanage, but it isn't long until they realize that there is something different about this young man. He has super human strength, and can run and jump faster and higher than anything known to man.
In this comic we find out that Superman's secret identity is Clark Kent and that he works at the newspaper as a reporter. He goes around saving peoples’ lives, brings peace, and justice, one day at a time, while still doing his job.  He is the man!
In the comic Clark Kent gets the courage to ask Lois on a date. On this date Clark and Lois are dancing when a man named Butch decides that he wants to cut in and have a dance with Lois. Clark lets him (because of course he does not want to fight nor show that he has superpowers) and Lois is very upset. She calls him a coward, jumps into a cab and drives home. On her way home Butch follows her, and steals her. But to her surprise and probably relief Superman is there to save her.
The differences between Superman, and Clark Kent are…. Superman is bold and not afraid of anything. He goes around saving people’s lives and brings justice to the people. He is not afraid to stand up for himself and not afraid to put himself in dangers way all to help others. On the other hand I don’t think  Clark Kent  is a cowered as Lois explains it. He is scared to stand up for himself, and for those around him because he does have superpowers in which he cannot use in front of others.

The Beginning of a Legend

    In Action Comics #1 Superman makes his first appearance in the world of comics. His story begins when he is a baby and is send off to earth to escape the destruction of his planet. Then the story skips through time and we are introduced to the new hero with supernatural abilities. In his first appearance as a hero we see him with a woman racing through as he is trying to talk to the governor in order to save an innocent life. Superman then is forced to knock down the door as he is first turned down. Then to show his great strenght he knocks the governor's metal door. We also see his powers as he gets shot and the bullet ricochets off his skin. Then we see Superman save the day when he delivers a confession to the governor that will save a life. Clark Kent is then called by his boss in The Daily Star, in which he is assigned to cover the reports of Superman. Clark using some irony replies back "If i can't find out anything about this Superman then NO ONE CAN!" Superman is once again on duty after hearing of a man beating his wife. He takes care of the problem and even has enough time to change into Clark Kent before the police arrive. Later on Lois Lane is first introduced as Kent nerviously askes her on a date. Lois accepts and then the story is skiped to later that night were Clark and Lois are dancing. Another plroblem is presented once again as another man intimidates him when he wants to steal Lois from him. Clark as the whimpy guys backs off and Lois slaps the man and takes off. Superman is once again needed as the bad guy is chasing after Lois and eventually kidnaps her. Superman manages to save Lois and he advises her to not print the story. Back in The Daily Star Lois ignores Clark for his cowarly act the night before. Clark once again is assigned another job but ends up in Washignton D.C.. In Washignton he sees suspicious activities and decided to investigate. He finds out that one of the senators had been commiting corruption by trying to pass a bill. Superman then tries to gain information from Alex Greer, Senator Barrows' complice. Not getting any information, Superman takes off with Alex leaping into the night.
    In Up, Up, and Oy Vey Simcha Weinstein analyzed how Jewish tradition helped shape Superman. Many people even argue that he is Jewish as there are many characteristics that make him look Jewish. But reading the comic for the first time, we cant really see how Suprman is Jewish. Its not untill we examine it that connections can be made. Even though his escape from Krypton was only introduced briefly, we can still see how it can be compared to the story of Moses. In the video The Death and Return of Superman its explained how superheroes are handed powers like if they were candy. We can see how this happens as Superman starts with the ability to leap, incredible strength and incredible speed. Today, Superman's powers seemed to have increased as he can basically do anything he wants.

World's Smartest Detective And A Background Check On The Man of STEEL!

DC comics published Action Comics #1 in June 1938; it was the first issue of the Action Comics. It also featured the first appearance of most remarkably the Jerry Siegel/Joe Shuster creation Superman.

In a nutshell, Superman was: Rocketed as a baby from the exploding planet Krypton Kal-El raised by the farmer Jonathan Kent and his wife Martha Kent. Kal-El –now Clark Kent grew to manhood on Earth, whose yellow sun and lighter gravity gave him fantastic super powers! In the city of Metropolis, he poses as mild-mannered news reporter Clark Kent, but battles evil all over Earth and beyond --as Superman: Man of Steel!

Detective Comics Issue No. 27 was the first comic book where Batman was featured. With no detailed story, the comic starts with Lambert and Bruce Wayne talking to each other when a sudden killing of a businessman grabs their attention. The son gets blamed for killing his dad as the police find his fingerprints on the knife. Meanwhile, another millionaire businessman gets murdered. So, these series of murders makes Batman investigate the issue and in the process of the third businessman being killed, he stops the murderer and gets evidence. Only to discover that the person behind all the killings was the businessmen’s partner whose plan was to be the sole owner. Batman a man of smart, wit and a knack for doing the perfectly right thing, Batman is distinctive compared to other super heroes, as he does not posses special powers. He keeps his town safe with the help of his fancy gadgets, his money, but also his dexterousness is credible.

All this while we have been reading and comprehending about comics, but by getting the opportunity to actually read such legendary comics is mind-boggling. To me both the Superheroes are par. These characters have been around for about 7 decades now, and in this time span, they have changed, developed, grown stronger, more invincible and have stayed immortal (at least for some). Having to choose between the two is hard as they do pretty similar things: fight crime to protect mankind, which make them the champion of the oppressed. These comics and the messages sent across make me agree a 101% to Weinstein and 'How Jewish History, Culture and Values Shaped the Comic Book Superhero'. The formats of these comics give justice to McCloud’s analogy of comic books too. Reading the very first editions of the world famous Superhero’s has been the most EPIC part of this course!

But, Superman lifting a car? Not a big deal in today’s comics, but when it’s the Man of Steel lifting a car drawn on a “very fine”-rated 10-cent-issue of Action Comics No. 1, the deal is the biggest in comics history: over 2 million US dollars. Hence, making it a little more special!

Talk about new beginnings........

Heroism in Disguise

In the first comic, Superman in Action Comics #1, of the mythical Superman, Eco relays the message that Superman is a mythical character. Throughout the encounter of the story, Superman does not claim any sort of weakness, which prolongs the tale and the mystery of the character for later comics. Although the presence of any weaknesses does not exist in the first comic, he declares and develops an ongoing love life. As its assumed, mythical creatures do not assume these types of lives; so, Super man was categorized in the genre of Literacy.

As the first comic unfolds, the creation and early life of Superman is unveiled. Everything from his arrival to earth, from the infant/early childhood years, to the transitions he faced as an adult are told in this first comic. In his early years, Superman’s parents were faced with triumph and adversity, when the pain staking decision of sending their son off for essential survival and keeping him was weighing on them, as their home planet was being attacked.

As his first encounter, Superman saves an innocent woman. As this woman is being falsely accused of murder, Superman comes to her rescue. Using his lightening fast speed, he races to the governor with proof of her innocence, which makes newspaper headlines all over.
Superman’s secret identity is crucial to him and his well being. As a cover, Superman has a steady, regular job as a journalist at a local newspaper. His assignment at the paper was to observe and report any and all Superman headlines and appearances that he came across. His alias name was Clark Kent, so that no would suspect his secret obligation.

As his second encounter in the first magazine, a knifed man appears and is causing all kinds of havoc for the city. As expected and imagined, Superman once again, comes to the rescue. After a fierce battle, Superman disarms the bad guy, just as law enforcement arrives. As the Police scatter onto the scene, Superman transforms back into his alias Clark Kent the journalist, trying to catch the latest gossip.

Throughout the chain of events, Clark develops an interest in fellow co-worker Lois Lane. After many rejections and plenty of disinterest, Lois Lane finally agrees to an evening out with Mr. Clark, As the night unfolds, Lois is approached by another man and constantly challenges Clark for the attention and company of the pretty lady. Clark has no wish to challenge the other man, and comes off as though he doesn’t care about Lois and the competition of another man for attention.

Later in the story, as Lois gets into danger, Superman comes to her rescue, despite their rocky history. As anyone would, Lois reports her encounter to her superior at the papers where the story is run. Clark overhears here encounters as the day drags on and is saddened when he is no longer recognized by her for the remainder of the day. This comic is the beginning of an epic tale of heroism, love, triumph, sadness and despair; this comic started the beginning of a legend, the legend of Superman.

Superman: The Man, The Myth, The Legend

Jerry Siegel and Joe Shuster wasted no time in building up the character of Superman. In the first comic of Superman we are introduced to him as Krypton is exploding and his scientist father places him in a spaceship which crash lands on Earth. The comic fast forwards to Superman the hero. He busts into the Governor’s house and proves the innocence of a woman sentenced to death. This is when all his incredible powers like flight, super strength, and his bullet proof skin are shown. The next day we meet Clark Kent, Superman’s secret identity. Clark is a nervous and shy reporter for a newspaper and is desperate to keep his two lives separate. Clark is sent to report on a domestic violence call and upon arriving he switches to Superman and saves the woman from her raging abuser and promptly changes back to Clark Kent before the police arrive. That night he goes dancing with Lois Lane, his co-worker who he likes, but the night is cut short when Lois storms out because Clark would not stand up for himself or her when a man forced his way in between Lois and Clark. The men go after Lois, but before any harm befalls her superman shows up to save her. The next day Clark apologizes, but Lois does not listen. Then Clark is sent to Washington DC where he discovers that a Senator is talking to an infamous lobbyist. Superman then confronts the lobbyist and takes him on an extreme excursion over buildings and telephone wires and arrives at Washington DC and that is where comic one of Superman concludes.
It cannot be denied that while reading Understanding Comics by Scott McCloud closure was definitely employed, but I would say that it is a much smoother process while reading a “true blue” comic like Superman. Understanding Comics, despite McCloud’s efforts, communicates its points through its words; the pictures where somewhat random and did not connect to following panels. It was the words that needed closure in order to express McCloud’s ideas. Reading Superman it was easier to follow and see how closure works because the pictures were telling the story and words enhanced it. It helped to refine my understanding of closure and its importance in comics.
I really loved the first installment of Superman. Not really the story, but how Siegel and Shuster put together Superman with such limited resources and how this one idea turned into such a phenomenon. There really is not character development; they go from baby Superman to grown up Superman in a matter of just a few panels and this is why Smallville was such a success because we finally got to see Clark grow up and see how he became Superman. The comic took off like it did, as discussed, because of its timing with the changing political climate in Europe and America’s need for a charge of patriotism in the 1930s. I think the comic has lasted because Superman represents the good that most every person wishes they could do themselves. Superman only uses his powers for the common good of man, and it proves the ability people have to do good.

Where the Obsession With Superman All Began...

In the beginning comic "Superman" The character starts off as an infant with exceptional strength and power. As Superman realized that he had unnatural powers, he decided he needed to use them for good. Superman as a normal person was known as Clark Kent, who was portrayed as an ordinary man with an ordinary job as a newspaper reporter. The comic starts off with Superman saving the life of a woman who was wrongly accused of a murder, who was going to get electrecuted. After superman saved this woman's life by finding out who the real killer was, Clark Kent's boss demanded to find Superman and write a juicy story about him. Clark Kent agreed to write a story about him. Clark has a crust with his co-worker Lois Lane, and he begins to take her to a dance, where he gets in an argument with Butch. Butch runs Lois Lane off the road, and then Superman comes to the rescue and saves Lois Lane. Superman grabs Butch and hangs him on an electric pole as punishment for abducting Lois.
Reading this comic was very interesting because he is not the modern day superman that we all know of. Superman in this comic has Super strength and speed, but the modern day superman has more super powers such as flying. This Comic was also a little cheesy but it still made superman popular, which is important.
In the book Understanding Comics by Scott McCloud he writes a chapter on closure, which we use when we read this comic. Since this comic has a lot of action, we use our imagination to create how he defeats his enemies. If we didn't read Understanding Comics then we would'nt understand how we made up what superman did in between the panels.

Superman Laying a Foundation for Future Supers

The Clark Kent phenomenon is introduced as a man in his Superman costume. Superman called on the Governor to help a women who was wrongfully accused of murder prove her innocence. The mistake was immediately fixed after Superman presented the evidence to the Governor. Kent then went to his day job as a newspaper reporter. He is interested in a women named Lois, and that day he invites her on a date. As they are dancing a man named Butch comes up to them asking if he can dance with her. Lois wanted Kent to stand up for her and not let this man take control of the situation. However, Kent did not and that disappointed her. She later called him a coward and jumped into a cab leaving Kent behind. Butch and his friends then followed the cab and ran it off the road and then retrieved Lois. Luckily, Kent had changed into Superman. He then stood in front of Butches car who did not stop forcing Superman to jump over the car and chase after it. He then picked up the car, grabbed Butch, and gave him a wedgie with Butches underwear hanging by a electric pole. He then rescued Lois and asked her not to write a report about this for the newspaper. The following day Kent went to work trying to talk to Lois who was ignoring him. Kent's boss later asked him to get a good picture for the front page of the newspaper. Kent ends up going Washington D.C. where he finds Senator Barrows having a suspicious conversation with Alex Greer (Kent snaps a picture of the two men). Kent hears their conversation and picks up on where they will be meeting later on that night. He goes to where they are meeting and finds out that they are discussing about a bill that will be passed. After their conversation Greer leaves where Superman retrieves him and carries him by the foot across telephone wires to the capitol.

This comic involves a lot of closure because it jumps from situation to situation. This refers back to what Scott McCloud discussed in Understanding Comics about closure. McCloud believes that without closure comics would be unreadable which is proven within the first Superman comic. Closure plays a huge role and without it this particular comic would be unreadable. In one particular part Superman was giving Butch a wedgie and the next panel Butch was hanging by a light pole with a wedgie. Closure helped you understand that Superman placed Butch there hanging by his underwear. Both panels were separated and the readers were able to see both panels and perceive it as a whole.

Superman seems like a FBI agent on steroids. Superman immediately had a positive identity in the public eye. After helping that women getting out of prosecution everyone looked at Superman as a hero and on the governments side. His true identity Clark Kent is the exact opposite of his secret identity. That is why Lois considers Clark a coward, and is not interested in him. Clark is probably trying to be the exact opposite of Superman so that way no one ever realizes who he truly is. In a sense Spiderman and Superman are a lot alike. They are probably a lot alike because all of the other superheros were created after Superman. Superman laid the foundation for future Superheros and everyone has followed the rules of superheros. Many superheros fall under the same category and that is why I have never been completely intrigued by superheroes because they are very much the same which makes them very predictable.

And so the men in tights begins!

The beginning of Superman starts with Clark Kent already grown and in character. He is introduced as he  so forcefully wakes the governor up in hopes to save a woman's life from prosecution, which he is successful in doing. After he goes back to his secret identity which is an ordinary man who works for a newspaper, there he is a reporting photographer. After Superman's first rescue of the woman he is hot news and his boss asks him to catch him. Kent makes the joke "If I can't catch Superman, NO ONE CAN!" With this the reader almost gets a sense of his hidden identity.
Clark Kent then asks a co-worker, Lois, to go on a date with him dancing. As everything is normal on the date a trouble maker who goes by Butch and his hoodlum friends get involved when Lois turns down a dance with Butch. She thinks of Kent as a coward for not fending up for her. As Lois storms off to the cab, shortly into her trip home Butch runs the cab off the road and threatens her to get into his car. Superman is secretly watching from above and joins in on the action. He stops the car, picks it up and forces everyone out by shaking the car upside down. Lois is not aware of his secret identity and then admires this Superman character. The next day at work Lois is still "cold" towards Kent. This again puts Superman on the spot and intrigues his boss even more. Who then sends him to seek out new exciting stories, but of course he takes a detour to Washington D.C.
Kent goes to a congress sitting where he finds the senator and Alex Greere, a lobbyist, secretly talking in public which the senator does not appreciate after asking not to speak with Greere in public. Superman gets in costume and eavesdrops on their planned conversation that night, he hears Greere making deals on influencing a sly bill being passed and takes action. He flies with Greere, running on phone lines, jumping from building to building and the legend of Superman begins.
This was the very first Superman comic made and I think that it was obvious. It was a little cheesy but definitely had the tools to pull the readers in. He isn't formally introduced but straight away goes into action, which gives you an idea what the story will be like. In all of Superman's rescues he shows off a new trait that he has as a super hero, which is better for the readers to understand Superman's super powers. As he has a hidden identity it isn't confusing to figure out because of the sarcasm behind some of his comments. His first rescue he knocks down the door and in the second picks up a car full of people which shows his super strength, and the last rescue he flies and has incredible balance running on the wires. Not to mention he can't get hurt because of his super tough skin. I think this comic wasn't very technical compared to todays comics, being that it was the first Superman, but it definitely set the bar for super heroes and gave comics a new perspective. After this super hero comics can now have standards to live up to in terms of super heroes, and action. In Scott McClouds understanding comics he talks about how narrowly comics are looked at as being childish and only about super heros. Being introduced to comics community with Superman does give you a sense that comics are about super heroes from the action and illustrations. If comics were more then super heroes you would question then why aren't all of the other stories made into books instead? Why not save comics for the super heroes only?

It's a Plane, It's a Bird, NO, It's SUPERMAN!!

It’s a plane, it’s a bird, NO, it’s SUPERMAN!
Superman is his name and comics are the game! Great comics are born from amazing beginnings and one comic in particular started a phenomenon. In the very first original superman (the beginning, Action comic One), superman began not with his history but with him ready to save society. The comic starts out with him trying to help a woman being accused of murder, and murder she did not do. Superman finds the real murderers and decides to deliver them to the governor’s house. In a way back when the comic was starting out, superman wasn’t “the man” yet, so it wasn’t possible to see the governor just like that. Even though, it was difficult didn’t mean it wasn’t impossible for superman. He pushes through to see the governor, and makes his first damsel in distress case (if that’s a way to put it). He tells the governor that the real murderers are located outside and the woman is innocent. A day later it shows the man behind the superhero’s identity, Clark Kent. His life hides his true identity with the help of his job as a reporter. After the world knowing of superman’s presence, Clark Kent (superman) gets assigned to cover to all of superman’s stories. Even with the help of his job and connections, he than starts to hear about a woman whom is getting beaten by her husband and he decide to save her. In the comic, he changes to superman quickly and when his job is done, he quickly changes back to Clark Kent. This gives it a really interesting image for the comic.
In the comic, as well, Clark Kent has a love interest and her name is Lois Lane. In the comic, Clark asks Lois to go out on a date with him, and of course Lois says yes. As they go on out to their date, it didn’t take long for trouble to stir. Lois and Clark decide to dance and soon a man comes over to cut in. Clark had no objectives but that did not satisfy what Lois thought. She threw a fit due to Clark not defending her, but rather him being OK with it. So, Lois left but it wasn’t long after that a couple of men followed after Lois and before you know it; superman is there to rescue her from the crazy men. The next day after, Lois excited in joy, talks about how she met superman and the love triangle begins. A new panel scene begins where Clark travels to Washington D.C for a job. As he is in Washington D.C, he runs into men whom are senators, but as he begins to listen to their conversation, he notices that the senator is talking about a bill that he finds quite interesting. As superman, he talks to the senator and asks him why he won’t explain his bill and such. The comic is to be continued from there.
The setup of the comic story is nothing like up to date comics today. The artwork and story line had an efficient amount of straight to the point work, and it wasn’t about the history or in depth sequences, it focused on the very short but right to the point matters of the situations. Also, the world crisis matters were based on real life events and real life criminals rather than fictional crisis events and fictional evil. After looking at the very first comic, I’ve noticed that there were a few similarities and methods that McCloud used in Understanding Comics. A quick view of this was when McCloud talks about craft and the six method steps. He mentions subject-to-subject, scene-to-scene and aspect-to-aspect. As you look at the first comic of superman, it uses some methods of those, and closure can be a part of that aspect due to the acceptance of superman’s double lives and his purpose towards saving the world. Now, that's amazingly interesting!

Clark Kent is Dull...but WOW look at Superman!

“A physical marvel, a mental wonder, Superman is destined to reshape the destiny of a world!” (1). The beginning of Superman is in the first issue made by Jerome Siegel and Joe Shuster in Action Comics No. 1. Clark Kent’s childhood and adolescence is given in short and his decision to use his extraordinary powers for good follows thereafter. Starting off by saving a woman who was going to be falsely electrocuted, Superman manages to stay undercover once his uniform is off and he is back to being Clark Kent the next day reading the latest news. Kent is later asked to cover the upcoming stories that this new hero Superman happens to be in. A shy and dull “human,” Kent convinces Lois to go on a date with him; later that night as they are dancing, another fellow intends to charm her more than he had been doing. Lois is offended by Kent’s cowardliness and takes off reassuring her dislike for him. That same night the fellow and his accomplices plan a conspiracy to kidnap Lois, but Superman of course, is out to the rescue and after a battle with the enemies safely takes her back to the city advising her not to share anything with the press. Swept off her feet by her previous encounter with Superman, Lois is even colder with Clark Kent. Similar to Scott McCloud’s point made in his text Understanding Comics, we humans see each other in everything so we are able to identify with cartoons; Superman as the ideal charmer is portrayed in the comic. To end the first issue of this superhero comic, Superman battles against a suspicious deal made between a man and a senator. The hero proves his superpowers to the man and threatens him so he will confess of the conspiracy they were up to. 
Superman seems to have wrapped the world around in complete admiration with his powers. Knowing the fame that Superman gained in America, it is interesting to read the first issue. Siegel and Shuster manage to reveal their inner personalities through the double identity of this superhero. The authors captivate the new readers attention with this “Sensational” character who promises to conquer the world and get rid of evil. Like McCloud simplifies in his text, the reader is inclined to pay more attention when they can relate themselves to the superhero or rely on him for salvation. Superman’s double identity also allows for the reader to experience the excitement between a normal and ideal figure.  

The Simpler the Better!!!

In the first comic of Superman,”Action Comics #1,” lets the reader in on a small portion of Superman’s life when he was a baby. He was sent in a space craft that his father built to save Superman from the self-destruction of his home planet. When he was on Earth, he was found by a motorist and placed in an orphanage. As a baby he had already acquired his super strength. We are then reading about the future, when Superman or also known as Clark Kent is an adult and is a reporter for a newspaper company. Superman saves a lady in distress as he going to the governor’s house with a very important message. (This is the first story of Superman saving a person that we are told) Superman is confronted by the Governor’s butler and he is refused the privilege of speaking to the governor at this time. But have no worries reader, Superman uses his awesome power of strength to get to the governor and he even brings the butler with him. The governor is asleep but awaken when Superman tears the steel door off the wall. Superman tells the governor that Evelyn Curry is innocent and he has a signed confession. She is 15 minutes away from being executed unless the governor calls it off. The butler must’ve felt that Superman is a threat to the governor because he reveals a concealed gun and aims it directly to Superman. The butler threatens to shoot Superman if he takes another step in his direction and of course Superman steps toward him. But the bullet doesn’t penetrate his skin, instead it ricochets off. Superman then presents the governor with a paper that is a signed confession from the real murders. The governor calls off the execution and spares an innocent life. The next day when the update of Evelyn Curry’s innocents is announced in the daily newspaper, Clark is called into his boss’s office. The boss gives Clark the responsibility of reporting on Superman. He wants him to find some information and take some pictures of Superman in action as an attempt to spice up the newspaper because it is dull. Just as he walks out of the boss’s office, a co-worker tells Clark that there is a wife beating in progress. Clark leaves the office to attend to the wife beating but doesn’t arrive to the address as Clark but as Superman. He throws the husband around like a rag doll and makes him faint. Shortly after the husband faints, Superman puts his street clothes over his costume and the police appear at the apartment. Clark returns back to his job and gets the courage to ask Lois Lane to dinner, which she accepts. Later that night the couple appears at a restaurant and is dancing. A man named Butch is at the restaurant with his two buddies and notices Lois. He decides to cut in and tries to dance with Lois. He tries to encourage Clark to fight him but Clark doesn’t fight him because he must keep his identity concealed. Lois is furious with Clark for not defending her and slaps Butch. She decides to leave in a taxi and confesses to Clark that she don’t pay any attention to him because he is a spineless coward. Butch and his buddies follow Lois’s taxi. They ram the taxi and force it into a ditch. They retrieve Lois and put her in the back seat of their car. Superman is standing down the road, in the middle waiting for them. Butch, who is the driver of the car, doesn’t slow down as he gets closer to Superman. But Superman hurdles over the car and beings to run after it. He picks the car up and literally shakes all the passengers out of it. Butch runs away on foot and is caught by Superman, who hangs Butch from a telephone pole. Superman then takes Lois to the outskirts of the city and reassures her that the incident will not be in the newspapers tomorrow. The next day, Clark apologizes for their dinner date but is given the cold shoulder from Lois. Clark’s boss sends him on travel to San Monte to report on the current war but instead he is going to Washington D.C. He attends a congressional session and witnesses a lobbyist talking to a senator. He takes a picture and over hears them talk about meeting at the senator’s house tonight at 8:30. Superman watches the two gentlemen talk as he stands outside the window. The gentlemen are talking about a bill that is going to be finalized. The lobbyist leaves the resident of the senator and is confronted by Superman. Superman picks the lobbyist up and gets on top of the capital building. Superman asks the lobbyist if he should jump to another building and the lobbyist pleads no. Superman doesn’t listen to the numerous pleads and jumps for another building. The comic ends without telling the reader if Superman completes the jump onto the other building or if he falls short.

After reading Scott McCloud’s book, “Understanding Comics- The Invisible Art,” there are numerous of things that are noticed, that are mentioned in the book. One thing that McCloud focuses on is closure, closure is when there are parts of something and we piece them together and make a new meaning of them. There are at least three incidents that I noticed that go on without explanations. They are that we aren’t told if Butch gets down from the telephone pole, we are also unaware of how Lois Lane gets home from the outskirts of the city and we don’t know if Superman completes the jump to the other building or falls short. Another way that we can relate the “Action Comics #1” to “Understanding Comics- The Invisible Art,” is by understanding that Scott McCloud focuses on the simplicity of the language in comics on the second chapter. He is stating that the language and the art in comics are simple. Even sometimes things are represented by icons. There are also motion lines in “Action Comics #1” in some panels, but they are used to show that there is movement in the panel.

I found the first edition of “Action Comics #1” interesting. I’ve read comics before and some of the art is complex. Don’t get me wrong, I am not saying that the art is awful; no it is a treat for your eyes. But the art in first edition is simple and it still is a treat for your eyes. What I’m trying to say is that plain and simple isn’t bad but is sometimes just as good as complex art; a prime example is the “Action Comics #1.” I enjoyed how the storyline had a lot of details to it but somehow the creators wrote the story within 13 pages. I adored this comic so much that I read all the stories in the “Action Comics #1” and “Detective Comics #27.”


Janelle McGee
In “Superman” Action Comics #1, Superman is created. The story of Superman begins on the background of Superman where we learn about his childhood life and where Superman came from. The Superman story then transitions to Superman as an adult. The adult Superman’s first encounter as a super hero was saving a woman being terrorized by means of electrocution because the woman was wrongly accused for committing murder. We find out that Superman has a secret identity. That secret identity is a regular guy who works at the newspaper also known as Clark. Clark’s responsibility while working at the newspaper was to observe all of the Superman Headlines and report every appearance that the super hero would make. The next encounter for Superman deals with a woman being abused by a man. As Superman deals with the situation, the cops show up. Superman does not want his secret identity to be revealed, so as soon as the cops showed up, Superman changed into his every day attire to become Clark. Clark has a thing for Lois Lane. Since Clark is also Superman, Clark also has Superman’s muscles and good looks. Clark built up the courage to ask Lois Lane on a date, Lois is asked to dance by another man, and Clark ruins things by not really caring that another man wants Lois. This proves why Lois was never really interested in Clark. Once Lois gets into danger, Superman comes to save the day as expected. Being that Lois works with Clark at the newspaper, she informed the boss about her encounter with Superman, which hurt Clark’s feelings because Lois did not pay attention to Clark the whole day. Superman is a super hero. Whenever there is a problem, he comes to save the day. Predictable, but exciting. The very first comic of Superman portrays that Superman has no weaknesses. In the Myth of Superman, Eco relays the information that Superman is mythical. Superman lets us know that he may not have weaknesses in the first comic, but that he at least has a love life which lets us the readers know that he is still human. Being human categorizes Superman in the literary genre. Comic writers were bordering the line between mythical and literary heroes. For a while, the variations become much more unclear about the mythical and literary heroes, which is why Eco is says that comic is in danger of losing its population.
My opinion is that Superman is unpopular today because people have seen so many comics throughout the American culture, that Superman has just become boring. You can’t have a superhero with no weaknesses, and when that superhero does have weaknesses they have to be kept. The superhero can’t just have a weakness and then acquire a new super power the same time villains find out what the weakness is. I thought that the Superman story was entertaining so I did not dislike reading it.