Thursday, December 29, 2011

Grandpa Geek

Exclusive Preview: Retelling Superman's Origin Story in Action Comics No. 5 | GeekDad | I have been reading comics for a couple of decades, starting with The Death of Superman. Since then, I’ve gone back and read older stories from the ’80s and before.
Oh, dear. When you talk to me about the Death of Superman, my first thought is the one from 1961. I actually have to search my memory to find another one, and even then I mentally stumble across his near-death from Virus X (the one where he revealed his secret identity by writing it on the surface of the moon) before I remember so-called Doomsday.

I forget my classics aren't everyone's classics, you know?

Then I hit this breathless praise:
This is the first time the DC new universe version has been told, and who better to tell this not-so-secret origin than superstar writer Grant Morrison and his equally super (see the pattern?) art team of Andy Kubert and Jesse Delperdang? Morrison has been steadily fleshing out the character’s beginnings since he first came on board with the Action Comics relaunch debut.
Yeah, I see what you did there. Sigh.

Superman's been around since 1938. In 1948 he finally learned the details of his own origin, that he is the last (or so he thought) survivor of another planet, known as Krypton. (We readers knew, but he didn't.) Between and since, there's been plenty of "fleshing out the character's beginnings", and just because Didio and Lee write pretty press releases doesn't mean it didn't happen.

Even Alan Moore remembered Lyla Lerrol when Superman Annual #11 ("For The Man Who Has Everything", 1985) came around, but I guess that's before your time too, isn't it?

Okay, I'm being unfair. I shouldn't dismiss a retelling of the origin story before I've actually read it: Goodness knows I've read several retellings of it already, and some of them I really liked. But the hyperbolic "nobody but Grant Morrison could have done this" really grates on my nerves. I can't think even Morrison would agree with such praise.

1 comment:

Rafa Rivas said...

I think Morrison is talented, but he needs a tough editor to remind them that readers don't have photographic memory. After 7 issues of any of his runs, you need to hire Adrian Monk to get the "Here is what happened".
I think that a number of writers could pull this origin, and given the talent pool DC currently has, I'd say that giving it to Morrison is not such a bad idea. Even thoug I don't like that he eliminated a lot of tradition, I think Byrne's man of Steel is tough to match.
Anyway, what are you gonna do? To us it's just another retelling of Superman's origin, but it's showbiz, DC has to advertise it as if it was THE retelling.