All Star Superman

My Favorite Panels: Lex’s Realization

Comics are a visual medium, and one panel can leave an impression that lasts a lifetime. With that in mind, I thought I would run through some of my favorite comic book panels of all time.

I begin the journey with one of my favorite comics ever, All Star Superman. I think it’s the best Superman story ever written, and it may be one of the best comics ever. Any given page of this 12-issue series is a work of art, but my favorite panel is rather understated.

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Superman's Secret Identity

Superman’s Secret Identity

Clark 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.

When confronted with this question in the Silver Age, Superman writers came up with a goofy explanation involving super-hypnosis and Kryptonian glasses. They didn’t have to try that hard. There are legitimate and believable reasons that people don’t immediately recognize Clark Kent as Superman.

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New 52

Successes from DC’s New 52

In 2011, DC Comics kicked off the “New 52,” canceling all of their previous titles and rebooting their superhero universe with 52 titles in a brand new continuity. Despite an initial uptick in sales, it’s safe to call the experiment a failure, as the whole continuity got rebooted again in 2016 with “Rebirth.”

There were a lot of reasons why the New 52 failed, but it primarily boils down to a lack of consistently good writing. DC editorial tried to pick and choose from the old continuity, deciding that some things happened and some things didn’t, but never developed a consistent timeline that its creative teams could follow. Editors also heavily meddled in the direction of the books, often hamstringing talented writers. (Prime example: the excellent Gail Simone getting what should have been her dream project on Batgirl, only for the story to turn joyless and perfunctory as the character got sucked into Batman’s “Death of the Family” crossover.)

Despite its failings, the New 52 did have a few gems. Here are a few titles I found really enjoyable.

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Justice League

Crowning Moments of Awesome: The DCAU

When it comes to comic adaptations, the DC Animated Universe (DCAU) is pretty much the cream of the crop. Running for over a decade, the shared universe included Batman: the Animated SeriesSuperman: the Animated SeriesBatman BeyondJustice LeagueJustice League Unlimited, and various tie-in movies and comics. Each series was full of awesome moments.

A good number of the scenes below come from Justice League Unlimited, which is my favorite of the DCAU series, but that’s not intended as a slight to the other shows. Suffice it to say that most everything associated with the DCAU was awesome, and the shows generally got better as they went on.

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Death of Superman

The Original Death of Superman

The death of Superman is an iconic moment in comics that brought a new level of introspection and insight to comics. It should rightfully be regarded as a true classic.

Superman vs Doomsday

No, not that one. I’m talking about the original death of Superman, which was an “imaginary story” (basically DC’s version of Marvel’s “What-If” comics) that occurred in Superman #149.

Superman Kryptonite
All that plotting and the best line he could come up with was, “You’re in super-trouble?”

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