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Author Topic: creative editing of entries of old stories?  (Read 4846 times)
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Super Monkey
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« on: March 10, 2005, 03:45:54 PM »

Ok, here is the problem. As I am writing the entry for U-Ban and his brothers, I notice a few things that were told as fact in tech story but were later re-conned. For example, littles things like the fact that the name Kryptonians didn't exist and wasn't use yet in the comics, instead Jor-El referred the people of Krypton as Kryptonites! So in order to avoid any confusion I just referred to them as Kryptonians and never quoted Jor-El. Not a big deal, but a bigger deal was the fact that this story was still using the Golden Age version of the origin. So while in the entry I wrote that they gain Superpowers like Superman once they landed on Earth. The truth is, if you didn't know, it didn't work that way. These were the 1st known survivors   besides Superman to ever appear in the comics. So when Superman ask them how they have the same powers as himself, U-Ban replies:

"Super-powers? How amusing! Where I come from, everyone has see-through  vision, extra-strength, and extra-speed!"

So I had to keep that bit of info out since that origin was re-conned during the Sliver Age.


So did I go about this is the right way, or should I have just kept the facts as they were written in the story itself, even though they contradict many other entries?
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« Reply #1 on: March 10, 2005, 04:13:04 PM »

It's a judgement call. I think either solution works fine.

This sort of issue also comes up in the entries in TGSB. I beleive that Fleisher usually notes contradictory information in the entries and if one version seems to be more canonical he dimisses the other one as probably inacurate, but he still mentions it, but I don't have my copy of TGSB with me so I can't double check that.

When your copy arives you'll probably see examples of how Fleisher deals with this problem and one solution would be to emmulate him, but if you choose a different soultion I don't think it wil matter much.
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The Starchild
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« Reply #2 on: March 10, 2005, 05:42:14 PM »

Quote from: "Super Monkey"
So when Superman ask them how they have the same powers as himself, U-Ban replies:

"Super-powers? How amusing! Where I come from, everyone has see-through  vision, extra-strength, and extra-speed!"

So I had to keep that bit of info out since that origin was re-conned during the Sliver Age.


I think you should have kept the facts as they were written in the story, because those are the events that happened at the time.  Here's an example of how Fleisher handles such things, this one taken from the massive Superman entry:

Quote from: "The Great Superman Book"
According to the earliest accounts, Clark Kent embarked on his super-heroic career as Superman only after reaching adulthood, and first learned of his extraterrestrial origins as late as November 1949.

In the years that followed, however, these early accounts underwent substantial revision.  In the newer version, Superman was portrayed as having battled crime and injustice as a youngster - as Superboy - prior to embarking on his adult crime-fighting career as Superman, and he was described as having learned of his extraterrestrial origins while still a boy by overtaking and photographing light rays that had left Krypton before it exploded.  In addition, it was stated that "Because of his super-memory, Superman can recall all the incidents of his childhood!"

Despite this revision, however, all the texts of the Superman chronicles agree that Superman has lived a double life since the onset of his super-heroic career, using his super-powers openly only as Superboy or Superman while concealing his true, extraterrestrial identity beneath the deceptive guise of mild-mannered Clark Kent.
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« Reply #3 on: March 11, 2005, 12:11:40 AM »

That sounds like a good idea, thanks.
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« Reply #4 on: March 11, 2005, 08:09:54 AM »

Great suggestions.  Re-reading Fleisher on Superman puts a whole different spin on some of my thinking about style and the treatment of retcons.

In an issue synopsis, I usually read mainly for plot and less for science  --often the weakest part of these stories --a mere "plot-device" used to prop up or propel the action/events.  It's only when reading a specific entry about, say, the origins of Superman's powers do I look to a historical consideration of their evolution or changes/retcons.  Not that they're aren't many strong "hard" science-fiction stories in the canon.  And not that these bits of plot-device aren't sometimes the parts of Superman I love the most. Cheesy

edit: Super Monkey, I tried to link your editorial note to the sub-category in Superman that deals with Super-powers, with little success.  What do you think about that idea?
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« Reply #5 on: March 11, 2005, 02:06:43 PM »

In my opinion, you'd be getting off on a tangent to explain all this in the story entry, so I'd avoid it.

The way I'd handle it would be to say, simply, that the three villains from Krypton arrive on Earth and, upon waking from suspended animation, exhibit powers identical to Superman's.  That doesn't contradict the story or later canon.

All the stuff about "Kryptonites" vs. "Kryptonians" and powers versus no powers should be covered in entries detailing the history of Kryptonites and Kryptonians.  Maybe there should be a second "Kryptonite" entry that says, "A resident of the planet Krypton. More commonly referred to as Kryptonians" and in the "Kryptonian" entry add a note like, "some texts refer to the residents of Krypton as 'Kryptonites.'"  And if it comes up in your synopsis of the story itself, you could do it like this: "All of we Kryptonites [sic] have these powers!"  (I love that little [sic] thingie!)

A good explanation for the term, if not the powers, is that anyone who lived on Krypton in Jor-El's time might have called themselves Kryptonites as a matter of preferrence (just as we couldmight call ourselves "Earthers," "Earthmen" or "Terrans"...all are correct) but after the planet's destruction that term was reserved for radioactive debris (after all, "kryptonite" the element did not exist until the place blew up!).  The villains, having been asleep for decades, would use the old term since they don't know any better.

Of course that's not canon, since it came from my head (more a pop gun than a cannon...heh), but it's fun.
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« Reply #6 on: March 30, 2005, 09:48:29 PM »

The reference to natives of Krypton as "Kryptonites" is identical to the very few times in Star Trek where natives of Vulcan were referred to as "Vulcanians" rather than the official term "Vulcans". In my opinion, the term "Kryptonites" shouldn't even be mentioned, as it's more or less irrelevant ... and to my knowledge it happened only in one story. Everybody knows that natives of Krypton are called "Kryptonians", and it should be left at that.
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« Reply #7 on: April 01, 2005, 01:06:04 AM »

Where's your scholarly spirit?  What of the poor novice who is not part of the "everybody" who knows this?  Do we leave him hanging, with no acknowledgement of the contradiction? Cheesy
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