Saturday, February 02, 2013

Reign of the Supermen #462: The Superman the Man Who Saw Superman Die Saw Die

Source: Superman vol.1 #399 (1984)
Type: Impostor(s)
AS PROMISED! The complete history of Colonel Future continues (and concludes) with this second and last outing for the character introduced by Paul Kupperberg in Superman #378, and this time, the story really is drawn by Eduardo Barreto! If you don't know Who Colonel Future is, you might want to get caught up in this week's Who's This? But if you're up to date, then you know life-threatening situations give the forcibly-retired hero visions of the future. So when he's almost hit by a car...
He feels he has to come out of retirement to save Superman's life. But there's no way Superman gets shot and killed by a normal gun, and immediately, the comic throws various human possibilities at us. Can YOU guess who actually gets shot? Is it... one of the United Charities collectors, dressed as Superman to canvas Metropolis?
Is it... Superman actor and Reign alumn Gregory Reed, helping out with the charity?
Is it... one of the crooks who steal Superman outfits from United Charities to rob Metropolis Square Gardens of the donations?
Any of these would make more sense than Superman actually getting shot, but Colonel Future once again shows that he may be a gifted inventor and extrapolationist, he's piss-poor at interpreting his visions. So instead of calling up Superman or something, he stages an attack on a nuclear power plant to lure the Man of Steel so he can trap him in a forcefield while the danger passes. So as in his first appearance, he appears to be a villain, and Superman again reacts with a jerking of his super-knees and refuses to talk things out. He damages Future's teleportation system in the ensuing fight and the Colonel escapes to... Metropolis Square Gardens by mistake. A great place to get cold-conked by Superman impostors.
With security guards on their tail, they take the time to dress Colonel Future up as one of them to confound the authorities. And when Future wakes up...
That's right, kids, HE'S the Superman who gets shot. TWIST! But wait, there's more! BANG, he falls over, but then Superman flies in and reveals Future really DIDN'T get shot because the Man of Tomorrow helpfully melted the bullet in its tracks. TWIST! But why did he collapse? Ah! Well you see, Future had a heart attack. Did this guy have a heart condition that never manifested itself EVERY OTHER TIME HE ALMOST DIED (remember, that's his shtick!)? I'm too busy looking at Superman giving him a super heart massage to really think too hard about it.
He comes to (hm... did he have another vision right then? We never find out) and once again, Superman is forced to wag a disciplinary finger at him for bungling his prophecy prevention plan.
And you know what? HE EVIDENTLY NEVER GOT BETTER. Because he was never seen again. Oh Superman, you're a crazy villain holding your writers hostage so they amend history in your favor, aren't you?


Martin Gray said...

I have this issue and still I guessed Gregory Reed! I wonder if Paul Kupperberg had Dream Girl's Legion of Super-Heroes debut in mind when he wrote this.

Siskoid said...

That's interesting, now I wonder too.