Saturday, November 03, 2012

Reign of the Supermen #448: Three Generations of Superman

Source: Action Comics #327 (1965)
Type: Imaginary story
In a future which MAY or MAY NOT happen, Superman has had a son (Jor-El II) and he too, has had a son (Kal-El II) and they all live together in the same house with Jor-El II's wife. And in this future which MAY or MAY NOT happen, the wizened Superman has had to retire because repeated exposure to kryptonite has sapped much of his powers.
Furthermore, he's dropped the whole Clark Kent secret identity, because there are no crooks anymore, so no one would put his friends and family in danger in the name of crime. That's right, writer Edmond Hamilton apparently thought the trend over the later half of the 20th century was going the extinction of crime.
They even started demolishing prisons. Like the comic says over and over again, this future MAY or MAY NOT happen, so who knows! Older Superman fills kiddie Superman's head with all this historical nonsense, which makes for some dangerous roughhousing.
When Superman-middle has to leave on a mission to stop a meteor from hitting some planet, Superman-old and Superman-young go on an adventure together. Shhh, don't tell. The details aren't really important. Kal-El II sees strange men in lead suits stealing steel beams, and brings in his granddad in case crooks are making a comeback. These super-strong dudes are building some kind of base, and attack the Supers when they approach. So they have to use their mix of experience and lower-level powers to defeat what turns out to be robots controlled by alien invaders (this is the Silver Age, so it involves ripping minerals out of the ground and somehow building a highly-technical robot frequency jammer with them), who promptly pack up and leave after getting thwarted by a child and a senior citizen.

Of course, when they get home, Superman Sr. gets chided for filling his grandson's head with stories that will keep him awake and bouncing off the furniture (my mom gave me the same speech about watching the Incredible Hulk show when I was a kid). You know, if you don't want you son and your dad to play superhero, maybe you'd give some thought to getting them a new wardrobe...

1 comment:

Moriarty said...

You know... It all makes sense now. Geoff Johns isn't slowly turning the Guardians from GREEN LANTERN evil for no reason... he's actually keeping in line with SUPERMAN continuity.