Archive for Lois Lane

Superman’s Secret Identity

Posted in Comic Books, Rants with tags , , , , , on November 24, 2014 by Charlie Brooks

Superman's Girlfriend Lois Lane #63Clark Kent’s glasses are both the most iconic and most ridiculed superhero disguise in comic book history. The disguise has been parodied in Saturday Night Live, called out as ridiculous in The Adventures of Lois and Clark, and called “the ludicrous glasses disguise” by David Goyer, one of the writers behind Man of Steel. How far can a pair of glasses and a changed hair style really get a person?

Well, actually, pretty far. Continue reading


Superhero Makeovers: Superman

Posted in Comic Books, Rants, Superhero Makeovers with tags , , , on October 22, 2014 by Charlie Brooks

It doesn't get much more iconic than Superman flying to the rescue.A physical marvel, a mental wonder, SUPERMAN is destined to reshape the destiny of a world!

It is very unlikely that even Superman’s creators Jerry Siegel and Joel Shuster expected those words from Action Comics #1 to come true. While not the first comic book hero with super powers, Superman is the character who defined what a superhero was. He had incredible powers, a flashy costume, a secret identity, and adventures that got weirder and weirder as time went on.
Continue reading

Lex Luthor: The Unsympathetic Protagonist

Posted in Comic Books, Random Blogness with tags , on February 17, 2011 by Charlie Brooks

Lex's wonderful new toy.I buy one comic a week. Twice every month, the means an issue of The Incredible Hulks, which, much to my delight, is currently a bimonthly book. As of late, the other half of the time has been spent catching up on Action Comics, which currently stars Lex Luthor and is written by Paul Cornell. It’s an excellent comic and quite fascinating because Lex Luthor violates everything I’ve learned about writing a protagonist. Namely, there’s nothing really likable about Lex, but the story is great anyway.

As a writer, I’ve always been taught that a likable protagonist is key to a story. Even if he’s not a good guy, if he can be funny or charming, the story can be successful. But Lex Luthor is neither funny nor charming. Really, he’s a total train wreck. He’s currently traveling the globe in a plot to conquer the world using residual energy left behind by Black Lanterns in the recent Blackest Night event. His first action in the story was to fire an employee for telling him that his demands are unreasonable. The employee flipped out and attacked him, so Lex had the employee executed later on. He’s also running around with a Lois Lane sexbot. No, there’s no ambiguity about it – he calls her Lois, she’s designed with some of Lois Lane’s DNA, and there is a scene where they’re lying naked in bed together. Moreover, the issue I read most recently involved Lex speaking with Death after he took a nasty fall, in which Death reveals one of his greatest sexual fantasies…which apparently involves some pretty kinky Lex-on-Loisbot action. And this isn’t Lex secretly lusting after Lois Lane – his fantasies all involve the robot version, even if the real Lois was made available to him.

I think one of the draws to Action Comics is just how messed up Luthor is. He’s an unlikable protagonist, but viewing his psyche and what he does when Superman isn’t around is like watching a train wreck. The other draw is definitely the Lois robot. For an android, she’s a fascinating character with a hidden agenda all her own. She’s got style, she’s got charm, and she’s got chain guns in her arms.

I can’t put my finger on exactly why Action Comics is a great read right now, although the psycho Lex and sexy Lois action-bot are definitely the two big draws. One thing is for sure, though – Paul Cornell is doing a heck of a job demonstrating that you don’t necessarily need a likable protagonist to tell a really good story.

What Would Superman Do?

Posted in Fiction, Short Stories with tags , , on December 22, 2010 by Charlie Brooks

Action Comics #1, the first instance of Superman being a dick.Italicized text is quoted from Action Comics #1.

He wakes up with a headache. He winces as his hand touches the soft spot on the side of his head. His alarm clock is Mom yelling, “Cory, get your ass down to the breakfast table!” Climbing out of bed, he notices that the sleeve of his Superman pajamas is torn.

SUPERMAN! Champion of the oppressed, the physical marvel who has sworn to devote his existence to helping those in need!

2008 was Clark Kent’s 70th birthday, and he felt like he should have died back in the 40s. Every day saw a trip around the world, saving people from everything from muggers to alien invasions. Not that it really mattered. For every damsel in distress that he saved, his super hearing picked up the dying screams of ten others dying of starvation halfway across the world. It would be okay if he could remain ignorant in his ineffectiveness like everyone else. Instead he got to be an omniscient four-color god. Continue reading

Rest in Peace, Superfriends

Posted in Comic Books, Rants, Those Blasted Superfriends with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on December 20, 2010 by Charlie Brooks
Click here for the first half of the episode. Technology allows me to share my pain.

Click here for the first half of the episode. Technology allows me to share my pain.

I might seem mean-spirited with these rants against Superfriends, but I only complain because of all the hours I spent watching and enjoying that show as a kid (proof that television rots your brain). This time around, I’m graduating to the more “mature” version of the show, Challenge of the Superfriends. I’ve been raiding YouTube for clips, and sat down and revisited one of the episodes of that series called “Rest in Peace.”

After a jazzy opening that reminds me that both Apache Chief and Giganta need to start wearing underwear when they rampage through a city, we start with a shocking scene: one of the Superfriends has been killed. The narrative takes its sweet time telling us who died, but it’s pretty obvious that the only major Superfriend missing from the crowd is Batman. He’s even got a bat-shaped tombstone, which kind of kills the mood by making me laugh out loud. Holy bat-funeral! Continue reading