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Author Topic: Superman's Durability  (Read 4956 times)
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Tonyman1989
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« on: May 06, 2005, 05:24:25 AM »

I heard that silver age superman can handle a blast that could destroy the earth. I did the math and that would be equal to a nuclear blast as strong as a 42 billion megaton nuke. Can he really handle this.
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Bill 9000
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« Reply #1 on: May 06, 2005, 11:32:51 AM »

Well, he's flown into the hearts of stars a lot of times ... that's enough to vaporize the Earth.
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Captain Kal
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« Reply #2 on: May 06, 2005, 04:59:53 PM »

In The Starry-Eyed Siren of Space, he took a supernova explosion and it only dazed him for a microsecond.

It was the Superman story immediately after O'Neil's Sandman Saga concluded.
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Captain Kal

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The Starchild
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« Reply #3 on: May 06, 2005, 05:12:46 PM »

So much for O'Neil's "de-powered" Superman!  They sure didn't waste any time ignoring that.
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Bill 9000
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« Reply #4 on: May 06, 2005, 06:39:35 PM »

In contrast, the Post-Crisis Byrne Superman could barely survive the ground zero detonation of a 40-megaton nuclear weapon.
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Captain Kal
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« Reply #5 on: May 08, 2005, 01:20:48 AM »

In later Bronze Age stories, Superman did better than just withstand supernova blasts.  On at least two occasions I know of, he circled around a supernova at super-speed and reversed it so strongly that it imploded into a black hole.  One occasion was in the new Brainiac origin.  I don't remember the story for the other occasion off-hand.

Given those multiple supernova invulnerability incidents, I did find it curious that he had to wear special protective armour to gather expanding radiation from a supernova when he enlarged Kandor.  That was the one Pre Crisis story I know of where he had troubles with a supernova.

And, yeah, Maggin and Bates ignored O'Neil's depowering.  Their take was Superman is supposed to be powerful to learn to work with it.  Alan Moore sure did.
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Captain Kal

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Bill 9000
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« Reply #6 on: May 08, 2005, 02:03:24 AM »

Quote from: "Captain Kal"
Their take was Superman is supposed to be powerful to learn to work with it.  Alan Moore sure did.

I personally don't see why it's so damned difficult to write about a character as powerful as Superman. As people have previously said, folks like Elliot S. Maggin, Cary Bates, Alan Moore, Marv Wolfman, Martin Pasko and many others were doing it for years before the overpriced "hotshots" of today started whining about how hard it is. Take a look at the story "How to Tame a Wild Volcano" from the Sandman saga. I know it was written by Dennis O'Neil, but just listen for a minute. Not a super-villain was to be found in this story (I discount the Quarrmer because he didn't really have that much of an impact on events in that issue). The story deals with Superman trying to save an island of villagers from an erupting volcano. Easy as pie for the Man from Krypton, you say? Normally, yes. However, what makes the job difficult is Supes having to do it while dealing with the island's knuckleheaded owner and trying to accomplish the job without trespassing and therefore breaking the law (which Superman is usually loathe to do). All this while trying to cover the event for an equally knuckleheaded boss (namely Morgan Edge) for WGBS News.

How do you write about a character as powerful as Superman? Like that ... that's how.
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Gangbuster
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« Reply #7 on: May 08, 2005, 03:44:23 AM »

Byrne's Superman was contradictory in that regard...

In The Dark Knight Returns, a nuclear weapon hurt him very badly, just as in other Byrne era stories. However, he was still able to fly near or through the Sun.

I guess they got around this by saying that he would be immune to solar reactions, since he was able to store the energy from them...
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