Friday, June 1, 2012

Action Comics #9

What is Earth 23 like? I'm excited to find out!

Let me start by saying I think the Little Man might be Mr. Mxyztplk of the New 52. I mentioned it in different non-Action Comics commentary, so I thought I would put it out here while I'm thinking about it. Also, the last story finished the big initial storyline and this one takes place on an alternate Earth, so I probably don't need a recap.

Can't a man hate black Superman for reasons other than his skin color? Like his annoying need to stop criminals? Stop snitchin', bitch!

Superman of Earth 23 handily defeats Lex Luthor on page one. Lex Luthor nearly has a stroke trying to convince Superman that he hates Superman because of everything about him and it's not about his race. Poor, misunderstood Lex Luthor. He doesn't hate Superman because he's black. He hates Superman because he's from Krypton! That's a totally different kind of racism. Get it right!

Superman investigates Lex's lair to see what he was up to and finds a giant cube which serves as a gateway between dimensions. This sounds like another object that is going to completely screw up DC Continuity!

"All right, Mister Morrison! Pull over and show me your writer's license. Do you have Didio's permission to fuck up continuity?"

While investigating the giant cube, some dimensional travelers step out of it.

These are alternate versions of Lois Lane, Jimmy Olsen, and Clark Kent. Well, they were alternate versions of Jimmy and Clark.

Lois and her now burned up freedom fighters are dimension hopping looking for help to stop some great evil from their Earth. Superman 23 believes that he can help them. Or her since the others have fried to a crisp. Or nearly. Clark is still clinging to life.

What happened? How did they come to Earth 23? The three friends developed a machine which could amplify their thoughts and create real objects. The power of their machine was not great enough for these objects to last though. And they wanted to create a Superman to solve all of the world's problems. So they needed funding. They went to Overcorp.

It's Mxyztplk! Is he in every world?

What they created was the ultimate product. The symbol ended up on everything. Everybody wanted to be associated with Superman. Everything became branded with its symbol. So Lois and Clark and Jimmy ran. They used their machine to jump from one reality to another. But the Superman of their Earth pursued them.

Is this why Tiny Titans was cancelled? This Superman destroyed their world?

Before Superman 23 destroys Superman Brand X, Superman 23 gets a call from his assistant about an intense situation in Libya. See, Superman 23 is also the president of the United States. But he can't deal with politics while he's saving the world! So he sends in his Brainiac double to keep peace on the world stage.

He doesn't actually look like that. Although there are probably people like David Icke of Earth 23 who catch glimpses of him like this and report it and they're called crazy and conspiracy theorists. But look! It's real! And only they know the truth!

Superman 23 and Superman Brand X blather and dance until Superman Brand X gets the upper hand and knocks Superman 23 across the room. That's when Luthor steps in with his "I told you so's".

In Swamp Thing #9, I posted a Young Ones pic. And now Lex Luthor uses the phrase, "Fascist Bully Boy," which I learned from The Young Ones.

With Luthor's help, Superman overpowers the Superman Brand. He traps it in-between wavelengths in Luthor's Transmatter Array (the thing it came out of in the first place). The fight is over. But since it's been trapped between wavelengths in some machine that allows people to go from one Earth to another, I imagine this Superman Brand X will wind up on Earth 1 sometime in the future. And Superman 1 won't have any idea what it is or how to defeat it. I imaging that's the main reason this story was told. It's the origin for a future Superman enemy.

The back-up story is a nice story about Superman 23 and his role as America's president. As Superman, he disables Qurac's Firestorm programs while discussing the situation with Qurac's president on his Bluetooth. After the mission is complete and the phone call is ended, Wonder Woman 23 has a few philosophical issues with Superman 23 being president.

For all you racists out there, you can still like Batman on Earth 23. He was white.

Action Comics #9 Rating: No change. I enjoyed both stories in this comic although I may have liked the backup story by Sholly Fisch a little bit more. Both stories dealt with the idea of a great power overstepping its bounds and going from a protector to a fascist. It's what Luthor has always seen in Superman and feared. And it's the question Wonder Woman is pondering at the end of the backup story. What is it about Superman that keeps him from crossing that line? And if he ever does cross it, will he know it? Will he make excuses for his abuse of power? Or will his Justice League friends keep him balanced?

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