Reign of the Supermen #119: Ultra Superman

Source: Action Comics #256 (1959)
Type: The real deal (since retconned)Ready for your Wednesday dose of Silver Age ridiculousness? Ok, here we go...

"The Superman of the Future!" has the Superman of 1959 apparently switch places with that of 100,000 A.D. for a week on the heels of Professor Wright's time travel experiment. Lois Lane and special guest-star Dirk Folgar, European correspondent of the World News Press, are on hand to witness the experimental test and meet the Ultra Superman. This super-evolved version of Supes has an extra power, the ability to project images from his mind.
In this instance, he tells of four disasters recorded by history which he wants to prevent, though he doesn't know how they happened exactly. As the journalists follow him in a helicopter, he fails to stop the first three, as the disasters seem to happen BECAUSE he tried to prevent them. To stop a tornado from destroying a suspension bridge, he builds a giant windmill to provide a counter wind, only to cause an earthquake when he plants the thing on a fault line. Later, a ship is mistakenly hit by an atomic bomb, and Superman can't do anything about it because of kryptonite caught in the ship's net. And finally, while he saves an underwater city built for a movie (eat your heart out, James Cameron) from a whale...
...the waves make Lois stumble onto a torpedo launch button on the submarine shadowing Superman and the set is destroyed anyway. He then reveals that the fourth disaster is the assassination of the U.S. president, which is really too bad because he's just proven that history can't be changed! This is good news for Dirk Folgar, actually a master spy on American soil to carry out that assassination. Confident that he can't be stopped, he booby traps a few manhole covers and blows up POTUS' car. But wait, who's that coming out of the wreckage?
That's right, Superman. See, it was all a HOAX to prove rumors that Folgar was an assassin and smoke him out! The Ultra Superman is a fiction achieved by wearing an HD projector under a rude bald cap!
So let me get this straight... A man with super-hearing, x-ray vision, super smarts, etc. etc. thought the following was the best way to prove that Dirk Folgar was indeed the head of a spy ring:
-Made up a crazy story about a time travel experiment and colluded with a scientist to make it appear that a Superman from the future was in their midst.
-Beforehand, fabricated special effects sequences that he then had to recreate.
-Purposely caused a tornado and then an earthquake in a populated area just so he could destroy a bridge (which he would later have to rebuild).
-Purposely let an atomic bomb explode on a ship in the ocean (it had been emptied, but still... what about all the MUTANTS?).
-Purposely destroyed a super-expensive movie set the day before they started shooting (which again, he would later have to rebuild).
-Got permission for all this from the authorities, the military, and the movie studio, as well as the necessary (and sometimes armed) rides for the journalists.
-Put a dummy driver in the front seat of the presidential car and allowed it to explode on a city street.
-Oh, and the silly costume head and fingers.

Yes, I'm sure that was the only sensible plan.

Is it me, or does Superman seem really keen to perpetrate hoaxes? Especially for someone who works in journalism...


Matthew Turnage said...

In the Silver Age, Superman was so powerful he had to come up with these elaborate schemes just to keep himself from getting bored.

Kal said...

There is nothing better than the over elaborate explanations Superman would give. They were always totally beyond anything the reader could ever figure out.

Plus why does anyone from the future have big heads. I see us getting dumber, not smarter with each passing year.

Siskoid said...

I see us getting stronger carpal tunnels.

Max said...

Matthew's right, petty crap like this is just about the only thing keeping Superman from heat visioning cars from space.

I was going to point out your typo but rude baldcap fits.

Siskoid said...

I assure you, that's no typo.


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