Tuesday, December 12, 2017

Recently Read: The Superman Chronicles, Vol. 9

In the second-to-last volume of DC's missed chronological reprintings of the adventures of Superman, cartoonist John Sikela does a good job attempting to keep the book looking like co-creator Joe Shuster's work.

Fortunately, Jerry Siegel's still writing every story and the work has a charm missing from today's interpretations. In this volume, Lois and Clark take on car dealers who purposely sell unsafe cars, take inner city kids out for a day in the country, rat out a fake astrologist, and help a budding baseball player start his career. This down-to-earth and humanist take on Superman is just what's missing in the stories I've read in the past several decades (although Grant Morrison's run started promisingly).

These are also the first reprinted stories I've read which use material created for the Superman radio show as orthodoxy. Jimmy Olson and the Fortress of Solitude are used in the stories as if they've already been introduced on the page; rather, they were apparently created for the radio show first and transferred to the comic books (and comic strip?). I'd love to hear from comics historians about this particular transference from radio to comics.

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