Superman Retrospective ’86 – ’99 pt. 4
You can check out the previous installments of this rather lengthy series here: http://www.toonbarn.com/tag/mxysuperman/
This issue has Darkseid, who is the ruler of the butt-end of the universe a.k.a. Apokolips, enacting a nefarious plan in which he transports Superman to his planet using some sort of teleport beam or something. However, the mighty Darkseid is completely baffled by the fact that his teleporting rays didn’t bring Superman over. Instead, it brought some random jerk named Clark Kent. So he chooses to toss Clark into the place called Armaghetto, which is basically like a ghetto, but crappier and infested by a race of aggressive space bums and beggars.
Superman bides his time and tries to blend in with the space bums of Armaghetto for a while, until he sees Darkseid’s minions about to throw a beautiful bum-lady into a pit of fire for spreading subversive propaganda. After fighting a large robot with a psychic lizard inside, Superman ends up falling into the pit of fire himself. The last thing we see is Darkseid laughing his butt off at this sight.
This issue is kind of hilarious because Darkseid, a cosmic deity, was thoroughly fooled by Clark Kent’s ridiculous disguise. “But he has glasses! I ordered a man without glasses! Away with you!” I can’t remember if it’s later revealed that Darkseid was just pretending to be dumb for the benefit of The Phantom Stranger (oh yeah, he’s also there), but it’s pretty silly anyway.
Adventures of Superman #426
This issue is all sorts of crazy even by comic book standards. It starts with Superman losing his memory as a result of falling into a pit of fire in the planet Apokolips (because that’s what fire does?) The amnesiac Superman then hooks up with Amazing Grace, the bum-lady he saved last issue, who is also the leader of the oppressed masses in Apokolips’ slums. Things escalate quickly and Superman, now sporting a beard and a Roman warrior costume, inspires a social revolution against the tyrant Darkseid, leading literally millions of Hunger Dogs in battle.
And then once Superman’s followers are all neatly gathered in one place, Superman does a complete heel turn and watches as they get literally slaughtered by Darkseid’s parademons. It turns out Amazing Grace is working for Darkseid, and she somehow convinced Superman that he is Darkseid’s son (despite Superman not looking anything like a massive space Hitler made of rock and condensed hate).
Action Comics #586
Due to a series of wacky circumstances that occurred in the titles above, Superman now thinks that he’s the fruit of evil space god Darkseid’s loins, and has also tricked a bunch of space bums-slash-rebels into being slaughtered. Superman also hooked up with a woman called Amazing Grace, who was the one who actually brainwashed him into evilness using her suggestion-based power and also because she is kinda hot.
At this point, it turns into a daytime soap as Superman runs into the real son of Darkseid, the hero Orion, who attempts to convince Superman to come back to his senses, by punching the Kryptonian’s face, like, really hard. When the punch-based approach didn’t work, Orion pulls out his trump card: he takes off his helmet and shows Superman exactly what one’s face would look like if your dad is a butt-ugly stone monster. It turns out that Orion is so ugly that it shocked Superman’s brain back into remembering everything, making him good again.
The return of Superman’s memories also brought back all the people that he purposely sent to their deaths while he was still amnesiac and it was…oh wait, no that didn’t happen. They’re still dead, haha.
Superman then goes after Darkseid and cleverly turns the space dictator’s own deadly eye lasers (omega beams, he calls it) back at him. Darkseid goes “ha, nicely played” and just sends Superman back to Earth. The end.
And that’s the end of the Legends crossover! I was looking forward to re-reading this storyline and the first two issues didn’t disappoint, but this one was kinda weak. The end is very sudden and kind of a cop-out, and with the massacre at the end of last issue it feels like Superman already lost.
This issue has a guy named Bloodsport, who’s superpower is that he’s named after a Van Damme movie, going around Metropolis shooting guns and yelling something about Vietnam. Yes, he’s basically Walter from the Big Lebowski, only black.
When Superman appears and tells him to cut it out, Bloodsport makes a special gun materialize in his hand (which is another power that he has) nd shoots Superman with a kryptonite bullet. Superman is about to get executed Saigon style, when he’s saved by his pal Jimmy Olsen.
After getting rid of that pesky kryptonite bullet, Superman goes at it with Bloodsport again and beats him, but the guy has an ace up his sleeve: he’s carrying a bomb that will blow up like half the city. That’s when Jimmy saves the day again by bringing Bloodsport’s crippled brother, causing the villain to collapse in grief. So for the record that’s Jimmy 2, Superman 0.
That would be it for now. Stay tuned for the 5th part next week. I literally have a truckload of these comics so we can keep this going for a LONG time. In the meantime, you can add me on Twitter: @mrmxy or read the stuff I wrote for Cracked at http://www.cracked.com/members/Mxy