Friday, November 27, 2015

Action Comics #46

Ain't these two just a couple of stinkers?

So there was a panel in the last issue of Action Comics that somehow slipped past me the first time I read it without a huge digression. My digression might not be as huge now but I'm going to pull it out anyway. That sentence was typed with a straight face.

What the fuck, Clark? What in the fucking fuck?!

So Clark Kent knows that Hiro is one of the worst kinds of criminal imaginable in a capitalist society and he's doing nothing about it? How many entrepreneurs and eager young inventors has Hiro ripped off and Clark thinks it's okay to give him a pass? Forget that Clark Kent is Superman. Clark Kent is a journalist! Well, he was. This alone proves that he's the shittiest journalist ever who doesn't give a shit about people in the way that Clark Kent and Superman used to give a shit about people. I guess it's okay to avert your eyes to Hiro's crimes because Hiro has helped Superman defeat bad guys who actually punch things. Those are, apparently, the worst kinds of bad guys ever! White collar bad guys like Hiro though? Totally cool. No big deal. Steal people's ideas and make millions of dollars off of them. Where's the harm, right Clark?

Fuck you, Clark Kent! And by "Fuck you, Clark Kent", I actually mean "Fuck you, Greg Pak." But I didn't want this to devolve into personal attacks!

Last issue, Superman tracked some Supremacist bad guys (unlikeable bad guys who need to be stopped unlike helpful, likeable bad guys who make millions off of their toys) to their wrath factory. In doing so, he's been infected with the angry black tar.

Oh boy. More angry Superman.

I suppose Superman was called a Boy Scout for too long and it rubbed people at DC the wrong way because they decided "Boy Scout" was being used in a derogatory manner (which--come on!--it totally was). Most thinking people proud of the character they were presenting to the world would have shrugged their shoulders and thought, "Fine. Superman isn't for you. But some people love Boy Scouts! Really, really, really love Boy Scouts! You know the people I'm talking about." But instead, the DC Powers That Be would rather be thought of as cool and hip. So their reaction was more like, "Oh? Oh? You don't like Superman like this? He's too gay, right? So gay! And by 'gay' we totally mean 'lame' even thought we're not supposed to use it that way anymore but it's still kind of cool and rebellious to use it that way and the type of people who hate Boy Scout Superman are the type of people we want to like Superman and they're the type to still call lame stuff gay! So, um, how about angry Superman who is angry and beats people up even when there's no need to beat them up? People seem to like Batman and Batman does that a lot! So maybe if we just wrote Batman but put an 'S' on his chest and called him Superman, would that make the jerks we want to please happy?! Let's try it! And while we're at it, can we institute a policy that all women at future office parties have to wear short skirts and no underwear?!"

I just realized at the end of that DC Powers That Be quote that I was really just writing my version of Eddie Berganza (which is probably a spot on impression of the real one!).

So some security robots show up to murder Superman and all of the test subjects including Lee Lemaris. Was that her name? Was she a mermaid?

I guess the angry black tar has made him more powerful? Or is this just his regular old non-powered power levels? I'm so confused by his abilities right now!

Superman defeats this batch of Supremacists and the police vocalize their appreciation of Superman doing their job for them. They would have to be idiotic jerks not to appreciate it! They're still getting paid and they didn't have to risk their lives? Superman is a cop's best friend! Although they might look bad because a vigilante did their job for them. But they'll be okay. Gotham cops suffer through that indignity on a daily basis.

Superman leaves the people he freed to be picked up and experimented on by John Henry. But it's okay that they'll be test subjects this time because they're not free to live their own lives at the behest of good people! It's totally different! Superman heads out to find Wrath so he can destroy this story arc and get his powers back! And hopefully let his hair grow out a bit because that buzz cut is not working for him.

Superman can now phase through shadows. Maybe he'll get to keep this power for awhile because remember how popular Superman was when he was made out of electricity?! People still clamor for those days! In ten years when Superman is an overpowered Boy Scout again, people will sit on their porches drinking Mint Juleps while daintily dabbing watermelon juice from their chin and sigh, "Remember tha days when Supahman was angry and could walk through shadows?" Then they'll sigh and go back to reading the new Batman by Scott Lobdell.

While in the shadows, Clark and Wrath are able to talk with each other. Wrath explains to Clark that the plan is to infect everybody with the angry black tar makes them feel more alive and can be used for good! Clark points out that maybe she should have called herself something other than "Wrath" if she wanted him to believe her plan was benevolent.

Lee follows Superman because Greg Pak seems to think Superman needs a powerful female and/or a thieving Asian sidekick on every adventure. That's fine. I just wish he didn't think Superman needed to have no powers, a haircut, and an angry attitude.

Superman is an undeadaphobe.

That's a pretty strange conclusion to jump to, Superman. Undead are easy vessels for Wrath to fill? Why would you think that? Frankenstein is a fully fleshed out personality just like every other unundead person you've ever met. Why should Frankenstein be easy to fill simply because he's an animated corpse? Seems like a prejudiced response to me!

Wrath appears to Lee to comment on the battle between Superman and Frankenstein. She points out that Superman isn't angry and brutal because of the angry black tar. The angry black tar just reveals the anger and brutality that was already within him. Normally, I'd argue that Wrath was a huge liar and that her underpants were on fire and that I couldn't wait until they burned away so I could get a glimpse of her secret bits. But Superman has been acting like a completely psychotically violent nutjob practically since The New 52 began. This angry punching persona is his natural state! And, judging by Dark Superman in Justice League, it's what everybody wants. I wish I were infected with angry black tar so that I could just give in and accept newfangled jerko Superman just like everybody else! I wonder if black tar heroin is the same as angry black tar? Even if it's not, it will probably stop me from caring about DC ruining Superman.

You can tell this is the angry bad Superman because of the tar goatee.

Action Comics #46 Rating: No change. Greg Pak continues to display his ignorance of Superman as a character. I suppose it's not his fault. He's writing the Superman the idiotic masses seem to want. He's less powerful so nobody has to worry about Marvel Fans pointing out how ridiculous his power levels are. He's angry so nobody will ever call him a Boy Scout again. He got a hair cut just in case people were making fun of his infantile spit curl. He's constantly battling by the side of a minority just in case people try to point out how overly white and male his adventures are. He's wearing a shirt and jeans so nobody is debating whether underwear should be worn on the outside or the inside. I guess those are the fixes Superman needed? And so what if he's not heroic anymore? Who cares if he's constantly battling personal problems and doesn't have time for anybody else? Who cares if he's not an inspiration to people to better themselves and fight for truth and justice and...well, maybe not exactly the American way since that way is violent and imperialistic. Who the fuck cares, right? I mean besides me.

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