CREDITS: Written by Stan Berkowitz and Alan Burnett; directed by Nobuo Tomizawa (better known as a animator, he continued to do DC projects up through Superman vs. The Elite).
REVIEW: Sometimes, it's about the animation. The Prometheon is a gorgeous piece of Akira-like action about a giant monster akin to Gamera the heat-sucking turtle (that's EXACTLY how the giant behaves) with all of anime's shadowing, detailed destruction, and excellent liquid interaction. The bit where Superman's spacesuit melts right off him, the creature's sea landing and its effect on a cruise ship, Superman luring it to the city's reservoir and the various military attacks on it, all look terrific.
So what if the plot is so slim? I WOULD have liked a bit more closure at the end, lest we believe the giant is forever trapped in the lake (which can't be, it's sure to thaw, and besides, looks like Metropolis is built in a wasteland, they're gonna need some fresh water). The initial premise seems to be based on the film Armageddon, surely not the best flick to imitate. And I do hate the trope of the xenophobic military officer who won't listen to experts and makes bad things get worse. Hardcastle won't appear in MANY episodes, but even one may be too much. Perhaps I'm just flashing to the state of Superman/girl comics today and how that idea's become a dreadful cliché.
But that's not really what the episode is about. It's about big, gorgeous action, Superman paying tribute to kaiju movies with flair.
IN THE COMICS: General Hardcastle is original to the show, but his "type" is obviously inspired by Thunderbolt Ross from the Hulk comics, and would become an unfortunate mainstay of post-2000s Superman comics through General Sam Lane. The Prometheon may not be related to the Old Gods of Chaos imprisoned in the Source Wall, having smashed into it strapped to comets, but it sure does feel like it's related to them! The Wall is in the Promethean Galaxy, after all.
SOUNDS LIKE: General Hardcastle is voiced by Charles Napier, unmistakable face and voice on TV and in movies since the late 60s. He was the Space Hippie Adam on Star Trek, and yes, that's what I decided his claim to fame should be.
REWATCHABILITY: Medium-High - On animation alone. Story feels a bit incomplete, but it's gorgeous to look at.