Reign of the Supermen #471: Terra Occulta's Clark Kent

Source: Planetary/JLA: Terra Occulta #1 (2002)
Type: Elseworlds
This is the only Planetary story I've ever read, I have to admit (hey, Jerry Ordway art, this Elseworlds fan couldn't resist), but we've seen a lot of this premise over the years: Superheroes take over the world to make it a better place (if you like fascist utopias). I suppose the first sustained use of this idea was Mark Gruenwald's Squadron Supreme, but Wildstorm's Planetary is probably the most extreme. By combining the Planetary universe with the DCU, Warren Ellis gives us a world where most of the superheroes we know have been killed "for the greater good". For example, the Flash was dissected so Planetary could create superfast couriers, Abin Sur was killed on arrival, and Ray Palmer was taken out so his shrinking technology could be appropriated for medical science.

Three heroes were actually CREATED by Planetary's shenanigans, and in Terra Occulta, they're in league to take down the superhuman regime. There's Bruce Wayne, whose family opposed Planetary and were killed for it before his eyes. There's Princess Diana who left Amazon Island just as it was nuked by Planetary. And there's Clark Kent whose parents were murdered so Planetary could steal and retro-engineer the Kryptonian tech in baby Kal's space capsule. They operate under cover of darkness, in satellite blackouts and definitely not in costume.
Over the course of the story, Clark will learn the truth from Bruce "Mr. Blunt" Wayne, and together they'll attack Planetary's moon base. Alas, those guys didn't take over a world full of superheroes without taking a lot of precautions, and Clark is pwned early on, cut off from sunlight and breathable air. Alas...
Ellis' Bruce and Diana are more interesting, but I won't spoil their fates in case I ever go insane and start doing Reign of the Batmen/Wonder Women articles.

8 comments:

SallyP said...

I have never read this, but man oh man, that is sure some purty artwork.

Siskoid said...

Superman gets chumped (too powerful I guess), but Ordway gets to draw some pretty badass moments with Bruce and Diana.

snell said...

I would reccommend Planetary too you, especially as you won't have to wait 3 years for the final issue...

chiasaur11 said...

Agreed. Planetary is aces.

The protagonists are, naturally, a lot more likable than they are here. I mean, they're still Warren Ellis characters, but...

(I kid. Mostly.)

Siskoid said...

...but they aren't killing the Justice League, yeah, I get what you mean.

Planetary is, I believe, on my Old52 list, so some day...

snell said...

The odd part about the Planetary/DC crossovers is that Ellis makes them the bad guys, when the Planetary team is the good guys in their own series. Odd way to give your book exposure...

Loki said...

You'll probably find yourself wanting to read Planetary sooner than that - there's at least two other Superman analogues in it, in addition to a cameo by the High from Ellis' StormWatch (who you already covered, if memory serves).

Siskoid said...

Mmm... I don't think I have because the only Stormwatch I've read is Cornell's New52 effort.

 

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